The hottest, newest inexplicable trend in both the craft and fashion communities involves putting the likeness of Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke onto any garment or piece of handmade merchandise.
The “Put a Berke on It” trend derives its name from the Portlandia comedy television show sketch “Put a Bird on It” which poked fun at the ubiquity of bird motifs on boutique items, such as lampshades or vintage suitcases.
“These Berke tote bags, skirts, teapots, iPhone cases, scarves and knitted caps are just flying off the shelves,” said Frazier Avenue store owner Madeline Callahann. “I’ve never seen anything like it before.”
“A dress is simply a dress,” said Callahann. “But with the face of Mayor Andy Berke on it, it becomes art.”
A search on the e-commerce website Etsy, devoted to handmade and vintage items, reveals thousands of different items for sale that feature the face of Mayor Berke.
“It’s not just local people buying this stuff,” said Callahann. “Ever since Emma Watson wore a Berke skirt to the British Fashion Awards, people all over the world have been going nuts over the trend, from Harajuku lolitas in Tokyo to fashionistas on the Champs-Élysées in Paris.”