• Kaity R.

Disney Parks merch gets trendy

Millennial Pink. Iridescent Blue. Popcorn Holders. These are of my must haves when it comes to my wide array of Disney Parks merchandise. But, as I sit here surfing through the latest Baby Yoda Valentine’s Day collection on Shop Disney, it hit me. When did Disney merch become...cool?

As a child, I would race to the front entrance of Magic Kingdom decked head to toe in my Minnie t-shirt, Daisy Duck visor and Mickey shorts. However, the second our vacation was over, so was my ridiculously gaudy wardrobe. Those moments would live on forever only in old photos that we mock and laugh over with wine at family gatherings. Surely, I would never have been caught in my Disney attire outside of that world, let alone plastered all over social media.

Flash forward to 2020. Gucci is the latest fashion house to partner with the Mouse on creating cool and chic items that not even Walt could have imagineered. With websites like Etsy and Red Bubble, fans were able to easily customize and design their merch exactly how they wanted it. Gone are the days at Downtown Disney where you had to pay extravagant prices for a “customized” shirt of preset list of characters with no originality. Why buy a generic and dated Mickey shirt, when you can pick any character you love, with any saying you desire that looks one of a kind?

While Disney may not always the quickest company to respond to the latest merchandise trends, they are incredibly observant. They knew there was a subculture out there that craved a way to show off the characters they grew up loving, but in a trendy way. Seemingly out of nowhere it was almost unavoidable to pass by a girl wearing her glitter Minnie Mouse ears throughout the parks. This led to Disney slowly introducing their retro collections. A perfect combination of nostalgia of the parks we grew up in along with the flashiness and bright colors of today.

I remember when Dooney and Burke first launched its Disney collection. I wanted so desperately to love this line. Unfortunately though at the time of its release, it still felt older and dated to me. I just couldn’t identify with this style. This was Disney’s first dive into the higher end fashion scene. However, as time went on, this collaboration would expand it’s offering and would truly pave the way for future partnerships with the classic Kate Spade, Colour Pop makeup line, Alex and Ani, and most recently Gucci, just to name a few. Disney has truly found a way to reach each and every member of its fanbase and continue to grow its empire.

Gone are the days of Disney Parks merch staying in just those parks. Disney has found a way to tap into our love of this brand and mesh it almost perfectly into our every day real lives. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to spend all my money to the new Minnie Floral collection.