Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Retailing Spring

Spring has sprung! As the sun shines and the unpronounceable Icelandic volcano quiets down, The Retail Muse has found a few weird and wonderful items while trend spotting. Garden postcards, Heart attack burgers, runway sounds, bra sizes and carstaches. Nothing says spring like carstaches!

Monster Fast Food
The latest foodie trend seems to be the heart attack inducing burgers peddled by fast food companies. After the 2007 introduction of the mega Wendy's Baconater, now KFC brings out the "Double Down", a concoction of bacon and cheese and sauce between two pieces of chicken. These fatty, enormous calorie sandwiches are part of an extreme junk food movement. While definitely not healthy, they seem to be more of a shock fad than an actual dietary suggestion. Still, even the New York Times food critic got in the act, chowing down on the KFC burger, calling it a "new low". Is it any wonder that people are getting bigger and bigger? Which brings us to:

Bra Sizes
Yes it's true. Bra sizes are getting bigger. Manufacturers and retailers report there is a growing demand for bigger and bigger bras in response to the whole obesity epidemic. The median bra size a decade ago was 36C. Now demand is growing for DD, DDD, G Cups. According to "Fashion Gossip Weekly" some bra builders are looking to manufacture a K Cup.

Life in On Line Grocery?
The on line grocery business is growing. Well for FreshDirect anyway, a company that has built a profitable online business in delivering groceries to urbanites in New York and New Jersey. Unlike all the other companies that tried and failed, FreshDirect has been successful in focusing on heavily urban areas where convenience and lack of a car, makes shopping on line a great deal of sense. They are planning to expand into other high density areas in the country. Interestingly, the overall profits for FreshDirect is almost 10% - much higher than the 6.2% reported by Kroger, the largest US Supermarket. There's money in those online apples.

Fashionable Sounds
Wondering what to play at your next fashion show? Bach? Beethoven? Air Supply? compiled a list of the most played songs at fashion shows in Paris, Milan, New York and London. The top ten list included songs by Iggy Pop, Franz Ferdinand, Michael Jackson, Duran Duran and even the Beatles. Top songs (with video links) include:
Dimestore Diamond by Gossip
Shoes by Tiga
No You Girls by Franz Ferdinand

Tori and Dean and IKEA
IKEA is teaming up with Tori Spelling and Dean McDermott in their latest reality show venture. Tori and Dean will travel the country on a road trip (watch out all!), and somewhere along the way (at least for two episodes), IKEA will perform a kitchen makeover for a happy guest. Will Tori and Dean put the IKEA kitchen together themselves? Stay tuned.

Scratch and sniff
Germany is releasing scratch and sniff postage stamps (you remember postage stamps and letters right?). In four fruity flavors like lemon and blueberry. They even raise money for charity. You can see them here. Order some today and send a scented letter to your loved one.

Macho Grills
If smelly postage is not manly enough for you, check out Another of the ever growing category of "you can't make this stuff up", is giant mustaches that can be affixed to the grill of your muscle car. You can order the "Classic Black Stache", or the Hulk Hogan like "legendary Blonde", and so much more.. One can only marvel at the business acumen to come up with this idea, and who the buyers are. Slap on your stache and gun your engines!

Garden Postcards
Here's a great little product. It's a gift card that opens up to create a 3D Victorian garden. Sprinkle the included seeds and display in a sunny spot. Viola a small little postcarden. Great idea. You can find out more about this company (including wholesale orders) at

1 comment:

Tammy said...

Hi, I follow your blog and find your information interesting. I must add to your comment on bra sizes. While it is true that North American manufactures only have bras up to a DD, there are a plethora of European companies that have sizes that range to a J. I own a bra boutique in New Brunswick Canada and have a full store of these companies. These bras are not only highly functional but very very beautiful.

Working in the industry, what I am seeing as a trend is not so much obesity that is changing the demands of sizes but the volume of the bust. More and more I see women of all ages who are 28 and 30 inches around the rib cage but require an F cup. These are clearly not plus size girls.

You won't find these sizes in department stores but they can be found a-plenty in your small fitting boutiques.