"What I see now is a trail of household goods that stretches back in time and across oceans, back to the Victorians and a mercantile society that came of age under the queen who gave the era her name. That society kept its financial and administrative brain in London and its beating industrial heart in cities like Manchester and Liverpool, drawing raw materials from and selling goods back to its far-flung empire."
I have a lot of thoughts about this. My immediate feeling is of gratitude, because that level of consumption and hoarding is the lifeblood of my vintage clothing business. That a "fast fashion" mentality, coming about in the 1940s with mass production of clothing and marketing strategy based on the idea that clothing was only useful as long as it was in style, created a larger wardrobe than ever before for the average Western woman. With that, for many women, came emotional attachment to the pieces she wore during happy times in life and when (as was destined to happen) they became passé, she held onto them for sentiment.
Which is where I come to the rescue- saving the lovely things imbued with memories- and foster them until they have a new home to be worn and enjoyed again.
I land in a place where I benefit (and, to be blunt, *love*) that people amassed so many wearable things and held onto them while also striving to save them from becoming more waste on the planet, and hoping to stem some of the acquisition of current fast fashion. If you look at Victorian decor as a precursor to consumptive consumerism, it would follow that it would influence attitudes toward clothing.
My home reflects this as well- mostly old things, antiques mixed with 1960s, Nouveau mixed with kitsch- many rescued, many family treasures. I find a sense of security with sturdy old things around me. But I also appreciate negative space and order for my sanity!
(gratuitous photo of my home- summer is over!)