Hoxton Monster Supplies
A colleague passed on these packs from the enigmatic Hoxton Monster Supplies. There are more packs on flickr which all have a great combination of wit and nice typography.
The brand has a charm somewhat lacking from other playful “fantasy brands” Take, for example, the online shop for trekkies which has started selling “Starfleet Academy” branded mugs, clothing etc.
As Brandfreak insightfully put it, this is gear that guarantees you won’t get laid. The most geeky message I found was one claiming the wearer to have triumphed in the “tri-dimensional” chess championships. The combination of chess and an obscure trekkie in-joke in this design is so powerful that it almost tears a nerd-hole in the fabric of space.
While there is no doubt a lucrative market for such fare, the homepage for the store is (in common with much digital shopping) rather dull, in contrast to the products being sold. This is probably down to technical restraints – “fields” and suchlike, which visually homogenize the selling space, but it sure makes the categories visual predecessors look more spirited…
As a lad (ok, young geek), I poured over the small adds in Marvel comics and Famous Monsters of Filmland. Intoxicated by more than the aroma of pulp printing, one stepped into another visual world, one unencumbered by taste, or neutered by true representations of the products on offer. In the dreary UK seventies, these ads from America suggested it was truly a promised land (for spotty boys).
Isn’t it odd, with all our technological advancement, that such memorable and distinctive design language has de-volved into the bland world of the Starfleet Academy shop? And that a category that was once the province of little boys is now the stuff of a “designer” Hoxton shop?