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Trend debate: granny chic 30 January, 2010

Posted by CandidaB in Candida's blog.
Tags: , , , , , , ,

With Mary Kate Olsen leading the pack, granny chic is all over the place. But is second-hand really chic, or just cheap as chips?

Image credit: House of Fraser


In the “more dash than cash” vein of post-recession Britain, there is no better way to furnish one’s home than with a quick trip to Oxfam, Save the Children and the rest. Giving while you spend (it’s too good to be true), you can channel some Alexa Chung granny chic with a retro patchwork quilt – very on trend – or fair trade candles and vintage cushions.

With high street prices creeping up and up, it’s time we all realised that reusing and revamping is so much better for our wallets, and the world, than forking out on identical factory-made products. And with the vintage vibe still strong, there is great style kudos to be gained from mixing old throws, antique chests and contemporary pieces. Original one-off market bargains and charity shop finds always tell a story, with a scratch here and a chip there – there is a real sense of history behind them that is lost in today’s mass market culture.

Antiquing is back. Even Laurence Llewlyn Bowen agrees, and he knows.

Please, no!

Enough of charity shop chic already! It might have been cool to dress like your granny a few years ago when no one else did, but now we just look messy and smell of musty damp.

Of course it’s wonderful to help charity shops, and there are certainly bargains to be found there, but head-to-toe, wall-to-floor cast offs just ain’t a good look in anyone’s home. If you really want to rock the granny chic look, you need to be selective and invest in pieces that will last more than a week and actually work well in the twenty first century.

Some things, such as hair nets or mustard-yellow and brown curtains, have been sequestered to the past for good reason. If you must resurrect them in your home or your wardrobe, think carefully about tempering the retro pieces with clean, modern lines.

And please, don’t forget the Febreeze.



1. moregeous - 1 February, 2010

It will be everywhere – all the trend watching companies are all over granny chic, even Kelly Hoppen mentioned it in her ram packed Birmingham Interiors talk!

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