Retro Owls Are Back To Roost!

Retro Staff Comments
Mr. Owl Tootsie Pop Messenger Bag

Retro Style Mr. Owl Tootsie Pop Messenger Bag

It’s no wonder that three of the world’s most popular owl characters were created in the 1970s.

First came Mr. Owl in 1970, who famously failed to answer the question “How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop?” in TV commercials.

Woodsy the Owl landed in 1972, helping the U.S. Forest Service remind kids to “Give a hoot – don’t pollute!”  Finally, Charlie the Owl brought his stuffy cleverness to the popular kids show, “New Zoo Revue” from 1972 to 1977.

The 1970s was definitely “The Owl Decade.”  Riding on the wings of the 1960s environmental movement and its anti-pollution goals, the owl swooped into the 70s as a cultural symbol of nature, purity and wisdom.  Soon the owl popped up as a design element in kitschy home decor and fashion.  Lamps, statues, planters, wall hangings, coin banks, mugs, belt buckles – owls were everywhere!  (Only in the 1970s could the owl-ful color combos of orange, brown and gold be truly appreciated!)

Awesome Owl Tray

Ceramic Yellow Owl Tray

Well, here we are in 2012 and owls have flown back into style.  We’re not just talking about the plaster owl statue in your grandma’s basement, but contemporary fashion that people actually wear and display in their homes.  Today there are more owls on fashion runways than in barns!  From discount stores to trendy boutiques, home stores to garden centers, you’ll find owls on dresses, jewelry, handbags and home decor like never before.

We even have evidence of this trend in our warehouse, where we’ve adopted several new species of retro owls.

Owl Quirkeys Key Caps

Quirkeys Key Caps

Adorable Owl Key Chain

LED Owl Keyring

Is the return of the owl just a cyclical fashion trend?  Has a generation captivated by the exploits of Harry Potter and his trusty owl Hedwig been swept up in the magic and mystery of owls?

Maybe we love owls because they have big eyes and a quirky, cryptic style, much like cats.  (One blogger describes them as “cats with wings.”)

Awesome Owls Mug

This Awesome Owls Mug features bright colors and big eyes.

Whatever the reasons, owls are back and better than ever – with apologies to Mr. Owl!


Last updated: Mar 22, 2012
Filed under: Retro Planet Products Tagged with: 1970s fashion, 1970s TV, animals, kitsch, owls, Retro Decor