The Summer Souvenir Craze: Bringing Vacation Vibes to Everyday Life

Last Updated: June 12, 2024By

The Summer Souvenir Craze: Bringing Vacation Vibes to Everyday Life

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Hey there! Can you believe it? Summer is still a bit away, but guess what? The summer vibes are already here with all those cool souvenirs popping up in stores! Think coral bracelets, quirky keyrings, and shell necklaces. These are totally the must-have accessories of the season.

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So, let me tell you about this amazing pop-up shop by Anya Hindmarch in west London. It’s like a mini-vacation in itself! Anya calls it her “love letter to the classic souvenir shops you find tucked away in favorite holiday destinations.” The outside of the shop looks all vintage with retro tiles and an old-school awning. Inside, it’s a treasure trove of goodies from fridge magnets to classic Kodak Gold film rolls. You’ll also find her famous raffia tote bags and some really cool upcycled shirts by Pikol, a London brand that uses Spanish souvenir glass cloths.

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The Rise of Fast-Fashion Souvenirs

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Not to be outdone, stores like Zara are all over this trend too. Their accessories section is bursting with ceramic shell necklaces and bracelets that look like coral. And then there’s Balenciaga with their latest it-bag, The Rodeo, covered in charms. We’re talking tasselled door key fobs and gaudy dolphin and heart-shaped keyrings that look like they came straight from a beachside stand. It’s like they’re giving a nod to that moment you realize you forgot to return the hotel key!

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One Person’s Trash…

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You know, what one person thinks is junk, another might see as treasure. Lucy Lethbridge, a writer, says souvenirs are all about taste. “Like, 50 years ago, people might have bought kitschy things because they thought they were beautiful,” she says. “Now, young people know kitsch is kitsch but they still love it because it’s kind of cool in a campy way.”

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While Balenciaga’s look might set you back £8,500, TikTok users have found a way to copy it for way less. They’re buying old bags from vintage sites and showing how to “Jane Birkin-ify” them. Remember Jane Birkin? She was all about covering her Hermès Birkin bag with cheap trinkets and stickers.

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Celebs and Souvenirs

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Pop stars like Dua Lipa and Lily Allen are into this trend too. They love decorating their bags with all kinds of little knick-knacks. On Depop, searches for bag charms are up by 29% this month. It seems like everyone wants to join the fun!

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Why We Love Souvenirs

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Henrik Lischke from Grazia thinks this trend is all about adding something unique to your look. He calls himself a “souvenir superfan” and loves wearing chunky beaded necklaces from Hydra and a feathered brooch from a gift shop in Scotland. “I love pieces that are specific to the area you find them in. They help add personality to a simple outfit. I’d much rather go to a souvenir shop than a luxury shopping mall,” he says.

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Even Olivia Singer from I-D, who usually rocks an all-black wardrobe, can’t resist a pair of cheap Eiffel Tower-shaped earrings she got in Paris. Her favorite souvenirs include a shell necklace from a beach holiday and a silver pyramid charm necklace from Egypt. “It’s a fine line between wearing souvenirs and looking over-the-top, but it’s nice to wear nice memories of things,” she says.

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Nostalgia and Personal Stories

Pikol’s founder, Dan Branston, is all about that nostalgia. He sources the glass cloths from car boot sales and loves a good faded cloth. “It has more of a back story. It makes you think about the person that brought it back in their suitcase from a holiday,” he explains.

Lischke thinks this trend is a response to the “quiet luxury” that’s been dominating fashion. “Souvenirs aren’t minimalist, but they do have forever appeal. People want to wear things that evoke joy. We are heading towards a loud fashion moment. Souvenirs are the first wave,” he says.

The Bottom Line

So, if you’re looking to spice up your wardrobe, maybe it’s time to hit up those souvenir shops and grab some trinkets. They’re not just fun – they’re a great way to keep a piece of your favorite vacation with you, no matter where you are!

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