Traditional arts and crafts and a taste for a softer, more innocent world are back in force. They bring with them a new authenticity, a sense that we are once more taking control of our lives. Perfect for the economic mood, it’s the opportunity to put a contemporary styling on traditional crafts, on the reused and recycled.
The techniques may be traditional but they’ve been brought right up to date to create dazzling new designs juxtaposing old and new, or new and recycled - traditional African leather weaving techniques with stainless steel, for example, or recycled glass ceramics in a new build house. But this is a look that you can also do yourself, putting new life into second-hand and unfashionable items by giving them a new modern twist.
But taking control also means doing away with the wasteful habits of yesteryear. That can be seen on a large scale in new buildings, constructed using recycled materials and that produce their own energy. It is also something that is happening at an individual level as we put everyday ecology into action by reducing the quantities of waste we produce and generally make the most of what we have.