Issue #119

Megan Hotson


Welcome to your weekly dose of TooXToo, this week featuring Anya’s curious collection of ice creams, Gym Sharks new barbershop, Patagonia’s new Amsterdam repair centre, and Suzuki UK’s new ‘good different’ campaign…

Anya’s curious collection of ice-creams

Anya Hindmarch is no stranger to exploring unconventional concepts. Playing with themes of nostalgia, applying them to the present – Hindmarch opened her fruit and veg grocery store last year, for example.

The latest iteration of Anya’s creative retail concepts is the Ice cream project pop-up – located in “The Village” in Chelsea – nestled amongst other stores that foster a strong feeling of locality, and township.

The Ice cream pop-up features a vast array of flavours – both sweet, and savoury, challenging what is or could be a conventional ice cream flavour.

Customers can order scoops of HP Sauce, Heinz Baked Beans, Lea & Perrins, Kikkoman Soy Sauce and Heinz Mayo flavoured ice creams… The idea behind what is easily the quirkiest ice cream parlour is to celebrate Hindmarch’s favourite brands – alongside her latest accessories collection, by taking products out of the pantry and into the freezer…

Anya’s play on favour and subverting where an idea or concept might be found is akin to Deliveroo’s cereal range released earlier this year. Deliveroo similarly played with a combination of sweet and savoury – creating sushi-flavoured cereal, to name but a few.

Both brands have played with the unexpected to create excitement around new product ranges – a novel way to engage consumers and add humour to their identity.

Gymshark’s new barber shop

Gymshark is due to open their new flagship on Regent Street this summer, but in anticipation – this fitness giant has just opened a barbershop designed to allow men to comfortably open up about their mental health.

Men will be able to talk to barbers who are trained in mental health in a free from judgment, safe space - all while receiving a penniless trim. The barbershop has been named ‘Deload’ – and is set amongst the eclectic, busy city streets of Shoreditch, a New Haven for customers to escape the buzz for a much needed ‘deload’.

The concept, and inspiration for the new barbershop came from the brand appreciating that men find it difficult to open up about their anxieties, or worries – but that they often confide in their barbers, because of the less confrontational, or intimidating approach of having a conversation in this laid-back setting.

Barbers from Curfew Grooming will giving men free haircuts until the 17th July, and Gymshark will be selling exclusive Gymshark Deload barbershop merchandise with all profits being donated to CALM, the mental health charity.

This venture from gym shark follows similar initiatives from brands making access to mental health support less stigmatised, and more accessible. For example – Self Space in Shoreditch aims to provide busy city dwellers with every day mental maintenance, on demand.

Not only are Gymshark championing mental health, but they are also showing that they are a brand invested in purpose driven action. Brands like this are set to succeed with today’s more conscious group of consumers who are passionate about brands that stand to raise awareness of important topics, specifically here – de-stigmatising men being open about their mental health. 

Patagonia’s new Amsterdam repair centre

Patagonia has partnered with Makers Unite, creating a new repair centre designed to be an open space to share with other like-minded brands.

Patagonia has been offering repair for a long time – with their repair facility in Reno, Nevada being the biggest apparel-mending center in the US. Patagonia are keen to repair “To keep more gear going for longer”, helping consumers to extend the life cycle of their garments to mitigate waste.

The novelty of this new design space is the addition of other brands who are implored to join and offer their own repair services to their customers too. Brands already part of the centre include Scotch & Soda Jeans – who for example are now having their denim repaired free of charge.

Greenwashing is a familiar tendency in the fashion industry. As consumers demand more transparency, and real tangible progress from brands there has been noticeable action by those like Patagonia who want to demonstrate a genuine, and long-term commitment to sustainable behaviour.

Repairing existing products for consumers is an easy way to convert good intentions into physical action – since the consequence of extending an items lifecycle not only benefits the planet, but the consumer who can take joy in continuing to own and wear their belongings without having to buy new.

 Suzuki UK celebrates ‘good different’ in their latest campaign 

Car adverts, or campaigns are synonymous with breathtaking scenery, or invigorating speed and motion. Suzuki UK have launched a new campaign that celebrates the perception its cars are different to anything else on the market…

The campaign has been dubbed ‘good different’ and characterises Suzuki as “the fun and friendly outlier, breaking category conventions by simplifying the over-complicated and giving customers what they need”.   


Creative Director at Iris, Ross Taylor commented on the direction of the campaign: "And, let's face it, the world doesn’t need another car advert driving through a city or a winding mountain road. Needless to say, it was one of the most fun and creative projects to work on, the way it should be, every time."

By straying from the norm, Suzuki are standing out from the crowd as a car brand that celebrates difference and creativity. This latest campaign also signals a cultural shift for Suzuki – one that diversifies their overall identity and future proofs their brand entering a new era.

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