Vintage retro rubbish

Is it just me?

Does anyone else think this way?

Isn’t it mostly the stuff our parents binned 20 yrs ago?

We went to a “Thrift Festival”. It was full of stalls selling homemade objects, home baked products (which I have no objection to)and old stuff, which suddenly Is “in” thus desirable.

Is it only Britain, or is it universal ? This obsession with oldness? Here in the  UK, since the invention of the “credit crunch” phrase, and the discovery in an old book shop of the wartime posters “keep calm and carry on”, we have gone oldthings crazy. Anything old, rusty, battered, scratched, made to look any of the above and worst of all brand new but looking old is priced high and sold with the title of Retro or Vintage.

At the Thrift show we saw preserve jars with rusty lids for £10 (no preserves of mine would darken the doors of those jars) , tin buckets, rag rugs, stalls which to me looked like they were piled high with old clothes but labelled “Vintage jumble” , bike wheels with old CDs stuck on them made into wall art, and on and on and on I could go.

Ok so it’s great to recycle, buy second hand, make things last and keep using. I have things from my parents which I will never replace with new, I buy books second hand, I have beautiful old china of my mum’s which is used regularly and I knit and sew with the best of them (and not just in the last three years or in “stitch and bitch” groups!)  But shouldn’t we be wondering if this is a band wagon and in a year or so  will we be doing the same as our parents did 20 yrs years ago, and that is flinging this stuff out and buying something shiny and new?

Vintage is just old. Things that older people have no more use for. Retro is just old. Things that you could buy a few years ago. It’s not special or magical or able to make your home more “homely”. Give it it’s correct name…second hand.



Ps anyone want to buy some old, rusty tins? My husband’s garage is full of them!


11 thoughts on “Vintage retro rubbish

  1. I can only say that last summer i searched out a second-hand 1950’s/1960’s/1970’s fan (one built from metal) because i was sick n’ tired of the cheap plastic one’s giving up after a few months of constant use.

  2. If this is still in fashion 2o years from now I shall make sure I am one of the ”exhibits” for sale. Imagine, a Retro Ark.
    Beats parking off in a retirement home, and I’ll bet I’ll still be worth a bob or two.

  3. So true! There are oodles of garbage stores in the states masquerading as “vintage”, they are especially frumpy out West. There will always be a huge market everywhere for nostalgia, for this I am certain. The oldest, most used thing I’ve purchased are magazines and books – there is something delightful about dictionaries from 1950, where yes, “lesbian” is defined as “women of Lesbos”. Haha!!

    • Love it !
      I too try to buy old books, especially for reading for the book group I go to, as I might not want to keep them ! And I agree, nostalgia will be with us for ever. But it’s the rubbish that has been renamed vintage which annoys me.

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