Everything Old is New Again

Close up on a bed in a bedroom

In the world of home décor, everything old is new again. From repurposed furniture to scraped hardwood floors and over-dyed rugs, there’s a new vibe in our homes. And it comes from the past.

Why? As futurist Richard Watson noted in a Refinery29.com article on nostalgia, it’s about the uncertainty of life in the future: “The yearning for the past is deeply connected to uncertainty surrounding the future,” he says. “We are looking for something that’s less complex, warmer, and more certain . . . It’s primarily caused by too much change – largely technological, but also geopolitical, along with a breakdown in trust (in institutions) and the fact that work and families are less stable.”

Key to this is the craft movement, as exemplified by Etsy and other websites that bring together what style maven Debbie Travis calls “passionate artisans” and “an increasingly broad audience.”

Cross-stitched hangings, reclaimed wood furniture, and yes, even macramé – that throwback to the sixties – thrive in these environments. Those who can’t do, buy. And their homes reflect the love and care that went into these new/old pieces. As Travis suggests: “We consumers show off these unique, crafted pieces that have a story behind them.”

It’s ironic that the massive shift to a tech society, as noted by Richard Watson, is actually responsible for the spread of the nostalgia movement in home décor.

Where previously, handcrafted items were relegated to makers’ markets and craft fairs, the Internet provides a global marketplace. One click, and you too can catch the new vibe.


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