We Love Lunch Boxes

Back in the day, your lunch box was something you treasured. You eagerly picked out a new one each year…and carried it with a sense of pride. For some reason I feel like lunch boxes are much more utilitarian now. Sure, they still have cartoons and what not on them, but more and more kiddo’s on the elementary school playground have unbranded nylon totes. Even bento boxes, which can be darling, don’t have the same cache and magic of a Knight Rider lunch box, ya know? This photo sums it all up for me—and totally reminds me of my brother Karl. He worshiped Star Wars and looooved his awesome Super Friends lunch pail.

image: Benjamin_oderwald

Lunch boxes were SUPER trendy amongst collectors back in the 90s….kinda like Pez. Prices became so inflated that I wouldn’t even really look at them, knowing they would cost a pretty penny. But the other day I stumbled upon a great Snoopy lunchbox and it reminded me that I DID still love them. What kind of lunch box did you carry back in the day?

images: lunzerland

image: Kevin Rej

TV show based lunch boxed were especially popular in my day (the 70s). That Charlie’s Angels lunch box?? I sooo wanted one. Ironically, often lunch boxes were for TV shows that your parents would never really let you watch….or for bands you never really listened to at age 8 (KISS, Charlie’s Angels, the A-Team….LAUGH IN!). But you knew of them through pop culture and you wanted to be a part of it all!

image: christian montone

image: Sarah Kennon

image: gtykal

image: apricot x

image: dani senske


image: fleece boy


image: stacy monakey

image: Pastor Future

I understand why they have evolved….tin lunch boxes get a little rusty, and nylon/vinyl is easier to clean. But man I miss those days. Wolfie likes his lunch box, and we got him a sweet Pokemon one, but I know he doesn’t feel that same reverence we all did when we were kids.

image: big brown house

image: Greg Koenig

Do you have these same memories? What was your lunch box? And how about your kiddos….what are they carrying their lunch in these days? I’m curious!

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7 thoughts on “We Love Lunch Boxes

  1. I loved my Dark Crystal lunch box. My favorite memory though is not mine, but my husbands. He and his friends would toss their lunch boxes down the hallway and watch the sparks fly! Can’t do that with today’s lunch boxes.

  2. I LOVE LUNCHBOXES. I have a small collection that comprise of childhood thrift store finds and family hand me downs (as well as finder’s keepers in my parents garage)

    I have The Muppet Show, Jungle Book, Disneyland (world?) and Knight Rider!
    I carried the Knight Rider box during most of high school.
    Grade School boxes were plastic and I think the sticker decal always wore off by the end of the school year. I have faint memories of a pink one that could be either Strawberry Shortcake OR Care Bares.

  3. These old metal boxes are the best! I have a Fat Albert and my sister’s Strawberry Shortcake ones in my collection (alas, no thermos for either), and bought my husband a He-Man with thermos from Ebay for his 40th, because he always wanted one growing up and never got it. Seriously, they’re the best. = )

  4. Oh man, I remember when I was younger. I decided not to take a lunch box to school because I thought it was lame, what a bad idea that was. A banana got crushed in my bag and I spent a large portion of my weekend cleaning it up, this was back when I was like 7. From then, I never ate a banana at school again. I wish I used the lunch box, the cleaning was a pain.

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