The Startup Hipster 2013 style guide

Hipsters
Hipsters

This week our elusive Startup Hipster dispenses nuggets of style advice. Read on for how to out-hipster the rest this Summer…

Seeing how you work at a startup and you’re all cool and stuff, you better take a seat and soak up the next five words. Summer is on the way. Yes Startup Hispters, it’s out with the old and in with the new; the new that still looks kind of old.

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Lovingly put together by yours truly, and tried and tested in over one country, this style guide will ensure that your cool factor will be up to par this year. Discard the sun screen and splash this all over your skinny, tattooed body instead…

width="200"Out: Fixie
In: Segway

Fixies were the pinnacle of startup transport, but their adoption has increased so much that they’re now pretty much mainstream. And a recent study found that those in the startup scene are allergic to anything mainstream.

The time is ripe to make the switch to a Segway. Get your lean on with this two-wheeled stallion, offering unparalleled mobility and a style that screams well-developed diabetes. They’re perfect for riding dirty around coffee shops, distributing drive-by high fives, and generally making you look awesome.

Interesting fact: The man that invented the Segway died by driving his off a cliff. No, really…

Out: Techno
In: Scat singing

Developers often talk of “the zone”. Although it sounds like the only accessible point of sexual interaction with a coder, it in fact means a deep state of concentration. Techno music helps this focus due to its repetitive nature, but the very real reality today is that Justin Bieber is even partial to a bit of techno.

Swap it out for some scat singing. Code to it. Eat lunch to it. Throw startup parties to it. If there’s one genre that will be so out there this summer season, it’s gotta be scat singing.

Interesting fact: Scat singing originated from the Chinese Dynasty.

width="216"Out: Club-Mate
In: Brown Ale

In Berlin at least, Club-Mate is a staple of the startup diet. Hell, you regularly see visitors dispensing gratuitous Tweets to the world asking if Club-Mate ships to their country. It’s all got a bit corporate, so you’ll need to disrupt the startup beverage sphere if you wanna keep your style this summer. I give you Brown Ale.

Nothing beats chugging down a thick, stodgy, cardiac arrest-inducing pint of the brown stuff on a hot summer’s day. Laugh at the pedestrians with Club-Mate in their back pockets as you wheel your own keg and pint glass to the BBQ.

Interesting fact: Ale is almost a drink.

Out: Hackathons
In: Sleepovers

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Crack out the sleeping bags and popcorn, sleepovers are coming back in a big way. The truth is there’s too many weekend office gatherings happening nowadays, and they’ve all kind of lost their pizzaz.

If you want to rekindle some of that cool hackathon camaraderie this summer, try setting up a sleepover with some of your BFFs and try and not wake your parents up. Throw some pillows around, rent a DVD and try to stay awake as long as possible. But keep the noise down.

Interesting fact: Sleepovers disrupt the idea of a bed.

Out: Hipster hat
In: Hairnet

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You know what I’m talking about. If you don’t, let me refresh your memory. Like the Fixie, there’s an epidemic of hipster hat adoption. Now everyone seems to be wearing one. Although we thought we had the cool edge by wearing ours in the winter, it simply won’t do this summer season.

Head down to your local grocery store, get a part-time job behind the käse counter, and throw on a hair net. Chicks love hairnets. And hey, in between your Ale pouring at the BBQ, you’ll qualify as the most hygienic person to flip the vegan, lactose-free, soya tofu.

Interesting fact: Wayne from Wayne’s World had an extensive collection of them.

Out: Startup shirts
In: Those screen cleaning thingies

It used to be that an event or meetup would be strewn like silly string with startup shirts and stickers. The operative phrase in that sentence is used to be. There are already a few swapping your standard shirt and sticker combos out for something even cooler: those screen cleaning thingies you stick to the back of your smartphone.

Don’t get left behind. They’re not ugly, or tacky, or slightly annoying, or useless, or a bit weird – they’re actually really, really cool. And considering your iPhone will get sweaty this summer, they’re a no-brainer.

Interesting fact: The idea for these came from Pogs.

width="199"Out: Mac
In: Scroll and quill

Another piece of equipment you don’t want to see dead with this summer is a computer. Specifically, a Mac. Water your “vintage” roots and pick up a scroll and quill. Sure, we all do well creating niche social networks on our computers, but if you want to up your game to CharlesDickens level, you better get your gold shillings out for this combo.

Just think: instead of a glowing Apple beaming out of a coffee chop window, people will be virally engaged with your wobbly feather. I guarantee you’ll be a trendsetter.

Interesting fact: Dickens also destroyed his Mac for this reason circa 1852.

Out: Email
In: Morse code

Email is just too mainstream. Even R Kelly uses it. Remove this uncool feeling from your life and grab an electrical telegraph system. By memorising the continental Morse code alphabet, you’ll really break the mold this season and bleep and bloop your way through correspondence like Samuel Morse himself.

Send your pitch decks via Morse code. Reply to Tweets in Morse code. The sky’s the limit with this vintage medium. Go nuts.

Interesting fact: Morse code was used in the war.

Out: Letterpress
In: Warhammer

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Some Valley guy invented this game called Letterpress. Lots of people like it. But a game poised for a come back – a come back you can bring about – is Warhammer. Nothing beats the thrill of painting small objects and moving them slowly around a mysterious miniature world constructed by old men in a shop on a Saturday.

Combine the above pointers for maximum effect: arrive on a Segway with your hairnet on, drink an ale, and listen to scat singing for the duration. Your 2013 summer is now complete.

Interesting fact: Warhammer is the words War and Hammer put together.

Image credits: Flickr users TheeErinJesse AcostaFeed My Starving Children (FMSC),  chispita_666,  M▲DELINE

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