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Friday, 10 June 2011

The age of austerity leads to new, successful initiative in The Netherlands: ‘back to the barn’ with Boer-Boer Underwear.

The age of austerity that has entered in many countries and the increasingly nationalistic, ‘back to your roots’ culture that has been caused by it, lead sometimes to surprisingly successful initiatives.  
One of those successful initiatives in The Netherlands is Boer-Boer (‘farmer-farmer’) underwear. The brand name sounds a lot like “Björn Borg” and that is no coincidence. Also the Boer-Boer underwear itself is a spitting image of the underwear of the famous Swedish tennisplayer and business man… but with a twist.
Instead of the colorful patterns and crazy colors that are offered by Björn Borg, the Boer-Boer underwear shows: crazy colors with… chickens, cows, pigs and sheep and even tire tracks of a tractor.
Boer-Boer Underwear Gentleman's models - Picture courtesy of Boer-Boer (www.b-boer.nl)

Boer-Boer Underwear Lady's models - Picture courtesy of Boer-Boer (www.b-boer.nl)
The underwear is very popular among youngsters from the Dutch country side, that wear it on the so-called ‘barn parties’: Parties were a farmer’s barn is used as a café annex discotheque and where a lot of youngsters from the countryside spend their weekends drinking beer and meeting their friends.
The attractiveness of this product is its ‘cheesiness’, recognizability and the feeling of nostalgia for a better-past-that-never-actually-existed. Feeling a farmer’s boy/girl in this computerized and social medialized age, gives a feeling of security and ‘grassroots’ in a world that evolves and changes ever quicker.
I can imagine that Björn Borg (the brand, not the man) is not very pleased to see this Dutch initiative.  However, instead of fighting the people behind Boer-Boer in court, Björn Borg should better take a look at it for its own next collection.

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