Squid Game boiler suits and Bridgerton corsets: What we bought in 2021

Squid Game boiler suits and Bridgerton corsets: What we bought in 2021

TikTok recipes, a return to the great British summer of sport, and TV hits such as Bridgerton and Squid Game all influenced what we bought in 2021.

So what exactly got tills ringing this year?

In January, the wisteria-clad mansions in Netflix drama Bridgerton sent eBay searches for the climbers up 300% compared to the year before, while searches for corsets and embroidery hoops also soared.

BBC One’s The Serpent - based on the true story of killer Charles Sobhraj preying on travellers exploring the “hippie trail” across South Asia – sparked searches for “shagpile rugs” and “halterneck tops” on eBay. John Lewis also reported a spike in searches for aviator sunglasses and sales of flared jeans.

In March Line of Duty also impacted our sartorial choices, with eBay searches for “police woman outfit” spiking by 440% when season six aired.

In terms of more formal wear, singer Ariana Grande’s wedding ensemble inspired a 600% surge in searches on eBay for “blusher wedding veil” after she posted pictures of her day in May.

After the Friends Reunion aired in June, journalist and author Dolly Alderton spotted a resemblance between Rachel Green’s dress in The One Where No One’s Ready and a green Whistles dress. Sales at John Lewis flew up by 400%.

During the Euro 2020 tournament, Jack Grealish seemed to be a firm fan favourite with a 526% increase in searches for ‘Grealish England Shirt’ in July. A further 920% rise was recorded in searches for “It’s Coming Home Bucket Hat”.

The FA via Getty Images

As Great Britain bagged a total of 65 medals at the Olympics, searches for “Team GB Kit” soared by 1,240%. The return of Wimbledon in July saw the comeback of strawberries and cream. Ocado noted a sales spike of 33% in the weeks of Wimbledon compared to the same weeks in the two months prior, and a 10% increase from 2019.

In September smash hit Netflix survival drama Squid Game arrived on screens and eBay saw 38 searches every hour for boiler suit costumes and a 1,900% spike in the first week of airing as viewers sought to dress like its play-to-the-death characters.

James Bond returned in No Time To Die and the film’s premiere saw searches for 007’s on-screen Omega Seamaster 300 watch soar by 171%. Searches for “pink velvet blazer” also spiked 485% after Daniel Craig wore one to the film’s London premiere on September 28.

Likewise, the Duchess of Cambridge stole the spotlight on the red carpet, wearing a shimmering gold sequin cape dress to the premiere and sparking a 73% increase in searches for “gold sequin dress”.

Getty Images

Cop26 might have grabbed headlines in October but eBay figures showed shoppers were purchasing more consciously all year round. Figures showed the number of customers buying a combination of new and used products on eBay UK has steadily increased over the past three years, up 12% from 2019, with 41% of eBay shoppers buying both new and used in 2021.

In December we stayed bundled up indoors as the weather chilled and the omicron variant gripped the UK. Naturally, we invested in comfier clothes. John Lewis reported searches for dressing gowns were up 31%, slippers up 27% and pyjamas up 31% on the week before.

Ecommerce marketplace OnBuy saw a 197% increase in sales of artificial Christmas trees amid growing concerns over the climate crisis and following data from the Carbon Trust suggesting that having a fake tree can be better for the environment as long as it’s used for seven years.

Food items that were snapped up off the back of TikTok food trends this year included feta cheese and pesto. Vegan fish products also received a boost in sales (29%) after the release of Netflix’s Seaspiracy.

With reporting by PA.

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