80s Lunchboxes: Metal Masterpieces and Portable Pieces of Art

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80s Lunchboxes: Metal Masterpieces and Portable Pieces of Art

Back in the 1980s, lunchboxes were more than just containers for your sandwich - they were a statement. The lunchbox was an essential part of our daily school ritual, a reflection of our personality, and often, our heroes. So, let's twist off our SpaghettiOs stained Thermos top and dive into the world of 80s lunchboxes.

In the 80s, your lunchbox was a badge of honor, a way to showcase your latest obsession, whether it was a your favorite TV show, movie, toy line, or cartoon character. These weren't just mere containers; they were metal masterpieces (later plastic) adorned with vivid imagery, capable of sparking conversations and, sometimes, envy among your classmates.

The early 80s continued the tradition of metal lunchboxes, which had been popular for decades. "The Dukes of Hazzard" and "E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial" lunchboxes were some of my early childhood favorites. Lunchtime was like an adventure with the awesome artwork featured on every side of the lunchbox. These metal cases, often paired with a matching thermos, were as durable as they were decorative. However, as the decade progressed, concerns over safety (those edges could be sharp!) and the advent of cheaper manufacturing methods saw the rise of plastic lunchboxes.

This would've been a typical lunch for me back in 1989.

By the mid to late 80s, plastic lunchboxes had taken over. They were lighter and deemed safer, but the amazing graphics that we all over the entire lunchbox, were now replaced with just a sticker on the front. I'm still nostalgic for the plastic lunchboxes, but the metal lunchboxes have my heart. For me, they were the peak of oldschool lunchboxes.


Fast forward to today, and 80s lunchboxes have become very collectible. These lunchboxes are a snapshot of the pop culture of the time, a tangible link to the past that many of us cherish. Whether it's finding that lunchbox you always wanted but never had or reclaiming the one that got away, the hunt for vintage lunchboxes can be as fun as the school days they remind us of.

The 80s lunchbox was more than just a container; it was a portable piece of art. As we look back, it's clear these lunchboxes held more than just our peanut butter sandwiches, Ecto Cooler and Doritos - they held our childhood dreams, friendships, and a touch of everyday magic. So, here's to oldschool lunchboxes, for being the unsung heroes of our school days, and a reminder of a simpler, yet incredibly colorful time in our lives.

What kind of lunchbox did you have back in the day? Comment below!

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