Lately I've been seeing ribbons (or ribbon banners) as frequently as the little boy in The Sixth Sense saw dead people. Maybe it was my own attempt to incorporate a ribbon into the design of a mark for a book publisher that brought them to my attention. You know how it goes—once you get an idea, you start seeing it everywhere. We made the ribbon into a bookmark. (Get it? A bookmark for a publisher?) After all, cliches work for a reason, because most people get them right away.
While ribbons used this way might be appropriate for certain projects, I think it's an idea that's being overused. Examples were easy to come by, but I've only included a few to protect the innocent.
It will be interesting if, at some AIGA event 20 years from now, some design historian remembers 2012 as the year of the ribbon banner. It could happen. Until then, it might be how I remember it.