Topshop x Stranger Things collection review


Unless for some reason you are literally stuck in a parallel universe, you would have heard that the second season of the hit Netflix show Stranger Things has finally been released. The show itself is a perfect concoction of thrilling sci-fi goodness, childhood nostalgia and of course, early 80’s fashion. I like to think of it as a modern take on the outer space, alien like obsession seen in all the movies from the time, in which Star Wars had took the baton from the moon landing of the 60’s and thus a new theme of inspiration had been introduced. The whole aesthetic of the show is pleasing to look at without the plotline. Viewers have been taking inspiration from the different styles featured in the show, whether it be Barb’s variety of patterned shirts or Lucas’ striped t-shirt and cord jacket combo, there’s a style to suit any personality.

Since the show began, companies have piled up with all kinds of merchandise that we just need to have to get our Stranger Things fix as we waited for the new season to start, whether it be t-shirts, phone cases, or even a classic lunch box. Topshop had caught on this merchandise bandwagon and in recent weeks had been teasing some form of collaboration with the hit show all over social media, even redecorating their Oxford Circus store to look just like some of the well known sets from the show. The idea of a reliable clothing brand producing items based around the entire style and entity of one of my person favourite shows had me ecstatic to say the least, as I’m sure many others were too. However I noticed my excitement over this Stranger Things themed clothing line died down once I got my first look at the collection, so here’s why.

If you haven’t had a glance at the collection yet, let me put it into perspective for you. The range features eight t-shirts, two sweatshirts, two caps, two backpacks, two lunchboxes and a book all about Barb. Now I will admit, I admire some of the designs on the t-shirts, and I like the inclusion of accessories like the backpacks, however the collection as a whole just didn’t live up to my expectations. I mean, did Topshop really need to come out with a basic black t-shirt with the logo printed on it for you to be able to get your hands on it? When I think of this type of merchandise, I think back to when Primark released a collection of t-shirts with Love Island quotes on it. Everyone has seen this merchandise done before (at cheaper prices too), whether it be on websites such as Redbubble or Amazon, a graphic tee featuring the Stranger Things logo isn’t a particularly strange sight today.

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For a brand like Topshop, a brand who typically always delivers that bit more than most other retailers, it was disappointing to see quite a limited range with very little creativity representing not just themselves, but also this widely appreciated series.  When I think of what these two businesses have in common when it comes to their clothing and costumes, I think of attention to detail and relevance. Stranger Things represented the style of the early 80’s in a universal way with it’s wide spectrum in age from the cast, catering to each of their characters individual personalities and how their style would have been categorized at the time, whether it be nerdy, preppy or more mature. When you combine these key looks and styles with Topshop’s quality and designs, you get a well reflected and well replicated collection.

What I predicted would happen when taking into consideration what Topshop already sells and takes it’s inspiration from, would be that they created a line that was based on the key outfits worn in the show, a ‘get the look’ kind of collection (which I only seen once in the whole collection with Dusten’s red blue and white cap being replicated). Think about it, this collection launched in the middle of Autumn, even a week before Halloween, whilst many people are still trying to find a Halloween costume. Even so, if you’re just looking for a good winter coat, why not get the same one as your favourite character from your favourite tv show? The time period when the show is set features all kinds of items that are trending now, in fact, the 70’s and 80’s are huge trends alone and have been for a while now, so anything you do consider purchasing is easily wearable and won’t exactly be outdated anytime soon.

To conclude, I do like some items from this Topshop x Stranger Things range as individual items, however I just believe that they had so much more potential with this collaboration and yet they repeated what many other companies had done before with Stranger Things merchandise. I like the idea of having an interest of yours printed onto an item such as a t-shirt, however I don’t see the demand for 8 variations of said t-shirt. I hope these two brands collaborate again in future to recreate something a bit more personalized to the show, rather than basic styles of merchandise.

Thank you for taking the time to read this review, I will link the collection below for you to take a look and and decide your judgement on it. Also, I finished all of season 2 within two days and I HIGHLY recommend you do the same, I loved this season and I even think it topped the first one.

Topshop x Stranger Things collaboration:

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