Today’s Teens Are Totally “Clueless”

from the Washington Post: Brandon Singleton was 8 when he first saw the movie “Clueless,” and it changed his life. He was entranced by the paradise of teenage consumption that the 1995 film portrayed, a Hollywood world of valet parking and designer duds. So when he entered Suitland High School in Prince George’s County four years ago, he was determined to make it his reality.
Now 17, he wears Armani sunglasses inside his mother’s modest townhome on a recent afternoon as he rattles off a list of his favorite designer brands: Dolce & Gabbana, Coach and “a little Burberry here and there.” His first luxury purchase was a pair of shiny black Gucci pants that he bought freshman year for $450 — all the money he had received for his 14th birthday.
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Like my closet is so my comfort zone
Unlike the flannel-clad generation before them, today’s teenagers are indulging more than ever in luxury goods once marketed to adults — and paying grownup prices for them.
Designer labels account for about 7 percent of U.S. clothing purchases. But among teen purchases, the figure doubles to 14 percent, said Marshal Cohen, chief analyst with the marketing research company NPD Fashionworld. Marketing experts said those numbers reflect the increasingly sophisticated tastes of American teenagers, who spent $191 billion last year: They don’t drink just coffee. They drink grande skim vanilla lattes with extra foam.
The marketers have been quick to catch on. Some of the latest ads for designer Marc Jacobs feature youthful, freckled faces. Versace enlisted pop singer Christina Aguilera to showcase its couture. Dooney & Burke, which makes handbags, has signed teen singer-actress Lindsay Lohan as the face of the brand and is giving away her CDs at its flagship stores.

About David Burn

Co-founder and editor of AdPulp. I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. I worked for seven agencies in five states before launching my own practice in 2009. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.