When you think of style, innovation, and matching rainbow desk supplies there is only one name to turn to: Lisa Frank. The youth of the 80’s and 90’s wouldn’t be caught dead without folders, writing utensils, and backpacks covered in unicorns. Lisa Frank provided color and creativity in the classroom, not to mention a status symbol. School supplies were suddenly treated like gold. A sticker set filled with kittens, tigers, and bears would guarantee a sleuth of new friends.
Lisa Frank has become a pinnacle of 90’s culture. Stores like Urban Outfitters are reviving the brand causing an overwhelming sense of nostalgia for any 90’s kid with a leftover love for rainbows. The brand, whose legacy has long outlasted the 90’s, has become an example of self-expression among pre-teens. In the world of Lisa Frank, anything goes. Pandas are purple, french fries float through space, and glitter is everywhere.
The founder and creator, Ms. Frank herself, had difficultly sharing her vision with the world in the beginning stages of her career. Her story, which was depicted in a film by the Upright Citizen’s Brigade, portrays Frank as a misunderstood artist, struggling to become an icon of rainbow. Her most famous line, which describes her brand if not just a movement of youth, is “No one’s going to trap me, and no one’s going to keep me!”
Today Lisa Frank represents a simpler time, back when popularity was based on how many stickers covered your pencil case and rebellion was a purple dolphin for purple dolphins’ sake. The 90’s may be over, but the spirit of Lisa Frank lives on. Perhaps one day we will get to really experience Frank’s technicolor dreamworld, complete with matching accessories. One thing’s for sure about Lisa Frank: You gotta have it!