You know that old saying, “If it’s good enough for the Swedes, then it’s good enough for the Russians?” Well, you might not, but the point is, on the heels of this story about Brooklyn being the hottest trend in Sweden, there are now reports that similar, even hipper rumblings are afoot in Moscow.
And actually, this may not be much of a compliment. According to GQ Russia writer Michael Idov, Moscow residents are already all about imitating other cities like London (baaaarf), Rome (ugh) and Paris (just kill me). Nonetheless, let’s hear them out on this Brooklyn thing.
“What Moscow, or at least a certain key demographic within it, increasingly wants to be is Brooklyn,” writes Idov. “More specifically, Williamsburg […] Call it a response to the peculiar predicament of the creative class: too cool for the mass market, not rich enough for the luxury market, it has created an in-between micromarket whose one basic requirement is unscalability.”
In the case of Moscow, this has manifested itself in businesses like Chop-Chop, “a barbershop slavishly reproducing the Brooklyn aesthetic on both its walls and its customers’ heads,” its female equivalent called Annie Hall, and a third company called Paste and Brushes, which is devoted exclusively to the sale of “obscure toothpaste and toothbrush brands.”