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Sweets in a jar
5 min read

Time For A Revival Business? The Trends Making A Comeback

The world now resembles The Jetson’s more closely than we ever could’ve imagined. For the younger generations, they’re natives who have known nothing different. A lot of the rest of us scramble to keep up with technology, at least with the bits that we feel are most relevant. 

On the flip side, some consumers are turning their back on aspects of the digital world. They can’t or won’t match pace and they long for the olden days. They search for things that fell out of favour or fashion decades ago that take them back to simpler, slower, and perhaps, more tangible times. We’re seeing the re-emergence of record stores, book stores and tea rooms in this vein. 

What other ventures have made a resurgence and which ones might be revived in the future?

This one’s for the comeback kids. 

 

Food 

Old-fashioned and retro sweets like rhubarb and custards, Nerds and Dweebs have seemingly come back for good with whole shops dedicated to jars and shelves of their sugary goodness. The Cereal Killer Cafe in London has also defied all odds and is still open, despite protests, to serve us up colourful and nostalgic bowls of Lucky Charms and Golden Grahams. 

You can’t beat a steamed jam roly-poly pudding or a treacle tart covered in Bird’s custard. And more and more of these are starting to appear on trendy restaurant sweets menus. The Caramel Tart Company in Dalston has centred its whole business around providing school dinner style desserts straight to your door via Deliveroo. If you’re not in the catchment area, whip up your own at home with another brilliant Bird’s invention that’s making a return – Angel Delight!

Wash it all down with a fizzy pop, freshly carbonated with your own hands from your SodaStream. Not only does it give you the retro vibes, you’re also saving plastic. 

Spoonful of cereal

What could be next?

It can only be a matter of time before trifle, pineapple upside-down cake, black forest gateaux, chocolate mousse and baked Alaska return to our kitchens and restaurants. We’ll also see more and more parts of the animal on our menus as ‘nose to tail’ eating promotes the ethical use of meat. 

Cheese fondue made a comeback around the turn of the century but the ‘don’t double-dip’ parties must be due another appearance anytime soon. And it is definitely about time that Terry’s rebuilt their Chocolate Pyramint

 

Fashion

Urban Outfitters has led the throwback wave with vintage clothes and streetwear. Sports brands like Fila and Champion are watching their bank balances boom for the first time in years. If you’re in your thirties, you’re probably cringing at the resurgence of these brands as well as scrunchies, over-sized jumpers and tartan. 

We also see the cyclical nature of fashion in interior design with rich velvets, luxe metallics and classic opulent pieces like chaise lounges and chandeliers being bang on-trend right now.

Velvet couch

What could be next?

Ripped denim and denim jackets come back in fashion every five to ten years without fail (but never, ever double denim). Grunge will turn to goth and unfortunately we’ll be wincing even more as neon-cyber-furry fashion rears its ugly head. 

 

Technology

Classic computer games and consoles will always be sought after. Think Donkey Kong, Space Invaders and Pac-Man. Record players and jukeboxes can’t fail to make any room look ten times cooler and they aren’t cheap or easy to get hold of in good condition. Polaroid cameras are also back in with the kids hardly being able to believe that we used to have photos in printed form. 

Retro arcade with scores

What could be next?

Today’s most popular video games will be the retro classics in ten or twenty years time. A few artists are starting to sell their albums in cassette format again meaning that we’ll also need Walkmans. VHS and VCRs can’t be far off a comeback. The minidisc player, however, can stay buried where it belongs. 

 

Toys

There’s nothing like the feeling of being reminded about one of your favourite toys or TV shows that you had as a child that you had long forgotten about. We’ve seen the return of vintage TV classics like Thunderbirds, The Care Bears, The Clangers and The Magic Roundabout being enjoyed by new audiences as much as wistful old ones. 

Polly Pocket ceased production in 1998 but has recently started up again. And the talking, blinking Teddy Ruxpin has reappeared, with a few upgrades. Fisher-Price has also cleverly capitalised on our sentimentality by bringing back the time-honoured cash register, chatter telephone record player and two-tune television. 

Toys laid out

What could be next?

It’s time for the revival of the 1990-2000 children’s shows and their related toys like Rosie and Jim, Bob the Builder, Brum, Tweenies, Rugrats and Pingu. 

 

Start your own comeback business 

If you carve out a small enough nostalgic niche for yourself there’s bound to be an interested audience. And retro items lend themselves to being marketed relatively easily. They’re visual, sharable, have talkability value and you can probably find specialist forums or social media groups dedicated to your items. Plus they support sustainability. 

If you have the passion to search for and source vintage goods, or the skills to repair them, then you could have a business right there. Start by scouring charity shops, car boot sales and eBay for inspiration and bargains. There could be a fortune to be made in your parent’s loft or garage. 

 

Could you latch on to the next big revival trend? Read our article on how to come up with good startup business ideas

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Sophie Cross

Sophie Cross is a freelance writer and marketer specialising in business and travel. She is the editor for London Revealed magazine and her clients include lastminute.com Group and Merlin Entertainments.

Comments (1)

  1. commented on

    Sophie is definitely correct in her Blog, vintage is the new fashion….

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