Right now, old things are in. They have been for a while. When I was a teenager, the vintage market was just starting up, but now it is in full force. With the more recent additions of etsy and pinterest, the market has almost become commonplace. As time pushes us forward, the Western world expresses a collective look back through our most common language - commerce.
But recently, we have moved beyond the market of the old to something even more exciting and interesting - craftsmanship. The nostalgia that started with combing thrift stores and raiding grandmothers' closets has now morphed into the desire to actually produce the past into our present. So much contact with the remainders of yesterday has renewed our understanding that skills must be specialized and that often owning one well crafted labor of creative love surpasses two half-forgotten and slapped-together copies. And ta-da! new handmade objects now hold the same nostalgic joy in them as their vintage counterparts because the process of handmade craftsmanship itself rings of past decades.
At the center of all this commercial celebration of the past, both old and new, is the desire and need for whimsey. A touch of whimsey causes us to play by embracing something different. Whimsey looks to possess something outside of ordinary life, whether from the reaches of imagination, from across the ocean, from the starry future, or from the dusty past. When we have found it and brought it into our world, we laugh and the moment lightens to give us joy for our present. Through the use of the unusual or the different, whimsey gives us strength to enjoy the all-consuming present.
And now, my shameless plug. One of the best examples of whimsical craftsmanship I have seen is a new millinery start up co-owned by my dear friend, Amy Rambo. As long as I have known her, Amy lives and breathes a love for whimsey and it exudes throughout Olive and Jane. Who doesn't want to wear a hat if not simply for the joy of the word fascinator? Take a peek at the Olive and Jane lookbooks and indulge your fanciful self. Let your imagination run wild with what once used to be and then let a bit of it creep into day to day dreams.