Category: 1980’s Trends

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Cabbage Patch Kids Dolls (1980’s)

It was 1979 when Xavier Roberts and five of his friends developed the Little People Originals dolls, a loveable but odd looking children’s toy that would soon become known as the Cabbage Patch Kids. Roberts, a sculptor from Georgia with a love for sculpting and quilting, was the manager of a craft store. Working part-time to put himself through college, he stumbled across a grand idea, a new way to market his dolls that would very quickly make him rich beyond his wildest dreams.

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Hacky Sack Footbags (1980’s)

Hacky Sacks, or footbags, were popular with youth in the United States during the 1980’s. During the peak of the fad, several million Hacky Sack footbags were sold sold each year. Surprisingly, the Hacky Sack had been invented nearly a decade earlier and footbags in general have been enjoyed by the public for many centuries.

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The Smurfs (1980’s)

The Smurfs, a comic and television franchise, centered on a group of small blue funny talking creatures called Smurfs. Popular in the 1980’s, they appeared on television, t-shirts, miniature models, games, burger boxes, and in toy stores throughout the United States. Many may not know it, but the Smurfs were created over a decade before their surge to success.

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Video Games (1980’s)

As early as the late 1940’s, missile defense systems employed by the United States government and run off of large mainframe computers, resembled a video game in both appearance and internal design. A couple of years later, Charley Adama created a “bouncing ball” program at MIT. By the late 1950’s university students in various colleges in the United States were using university computers to write rudimentary interactive games including popular collegiate hits such as tic-tac-toe and Spacewar. These developments built the base that the 1980’s video game craze was founded on.

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Rubik’s Cube (1980’s)

It has one correct answer and forty three quintillion wrong ones. It can be solved in 25 seconds or less. Its inventor became the first self-made millionaire from the communist bloc. Rubik’s Cube, or Magic Cube as it was known in its native Hungary, was invented in 1974 but took it took several years before the craze hit and swept throughout America. In 30 years, over 300 million Rubik’s Cubes had been sold.

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Crack Cocaine (1980’s)

Crack is cheap, easy to get, and highly addictive. It emerged in the mid-1980’s as the popular drug of choice because it was easy and inexpensive to manufacture making it readily available and cheap. In a 1986 Gallup poll, Americans listed crack cocaine as the most serious problem in American society.

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