When Equinox was formed by Chris Criscione in 1983, times were very different. Not just in the exhibitions industry, but at Christmas time too.
Where clients would be happy with just a painted back wall on their exhibition stands, kids were happy with BMX bikes, board games, and various other toys that were just nice, easy and simple. Whereas today, they’re all tuned in to the latest gizmos, gadgets, tablets and even mobile phones… all the things that you find people playing with on the latest exhibition stands…!
Back in ‘83, we had four channels to watch on TV, and one music chart. We had no internet, and we’d do Christmas shopping by actually going out and…doing shopping!
So just what was Equinox’s first Christmas like…?
Well, the toy craze of 1983 was the Cabbage Patch Kids. A series of dolls that apparently grew in the garden! They were the biggest selling toys at Christmas in 1983, and they were ugly things! But for some reason the kids went crazy for them, selling more than three million dolls, according to the Cabbage Patch official website.
Care Bears were also a favourite in 1983. The popular plush teddy bears were such a success they even starred in their own television special, and He Man & The Masters of The Universe was one for the boys based on the cartoon series and became one of the most successful boys toy concepts of all time. The ZX Spectrum computer was the must have home computer too, with a huge 16k of RAM and games that’d take between five and ten minutes to load.
The year 1983 also had some cool “toys” for adults too. Swatch watches were a big seller, the classic novelty straps and bright colours were a favourite among consumers that year, and in 1983, a Swatch watch cost just £25!
And of course, all the presents would be left under the real 6ft Christmas tree that would have set you back a cool £49.58.
How much for Christmas Dinner???
Once all the presents had been opened, mum would be slaving away in the kitchen making that incredible Christmas dinner. Roast turkey, potatoes, seasonal veg…all the trimmings, and litres and litres of gravy…to feed the family on Christmas day 1983 you’d be spending £11.75.
Later that afternoon, you tuned in to Top Of The Pops (everyone did, didn’t they?) to watch the Christmas special. This year, it was presented by Simon Bates, Janice Long, Mike Smith and Steve Wright. Slade (surprise surprise) were on stage to sing Merry Christmas Everybody, but it was Only You by the Flying Pickets who took the Christmas number one spot for 1983.
Sticking with TV, Treasure Island was the Christmas day film on BBC1 this year, and it’d be the last time we’d see the Morecambe & Wise Christmas special.
So, since we started almost 35 years ago, the exhibitions industry has come on leaps and bounds and the fun and simple Christmas has taken a different direction too. We definitely know that an exhibition stand today is massively better than is was back then, but Christmas….we’re not so sure!
To talk about your stand a firm who has 35 years’ experience and expertise in the Exhibitions industry, call Equinox now on +44 (0) 113 244 1300.