It’s August 2017, nearly 100 years after the term was adopted and centuries after the first appearance of the trend, and yet you’d be hard-pressed not to find Kitsch home décor accessories among every household.
A metallic pineapple here, a pink flamingo print there, bright watermelons emblazoned everywhere. You’d have to be pretty unobservant to have not noticed kitsch home décor accessories revival – and have the resolve of an Ox not to have purchased just one set of cactus string lights.
In Primark, the £6 best-selling bikini of summer 2017 has pineapples on it. But don’t worry if it’s flown off the shelf too quickly for you, ASOS have three bikinis with pineapples on them. You can’t scroll through Instagram without a picture of someone straddling a unicorn float.
But what is Kitsch… really? Where has it come from and how can you execute it in your home? Strap-in readers, we’ve got you.
What is Kitsch?Kitsch is gaudy, it’s garish, a niche taste and it’s truly one-of-a-kind. Hated by most and revered by a small few… of whom happen to be growing in number.
Kitsch can be anything, art, objects or simply a design pattern on clothing or furniture that’s typically poor taste because of its excessive garishness (think bold, neon or clashing colours) or sentimentality (think kitten ceramic). It’s appreciated in an ironic or ‘I know this is distasteful which shows that I’m not uptight and have a sense of humour’ kind of way. Get it?
Why Kitsch?The British began borrowing the term from Germany in the 19th Century to describe art, or other ornaments, that were cheesy or tacky. Things that were considered garish or overly sentimental (one wouldn’t want to upset the stiff upper lip now). However, Kitsch first became particularly popular in the ’50s, when things were beginning to settle down; the western world was trying to shake off the depression. Art, music, and literature were booming. Famous poets like Frank O’Hara, Barbara Guest, and Kenneth Koch had a celebrity status. Jackson Pollock could do no wrong. We wanted bright, bold colours – Barbie pink, palm green and neon yellow. We wanted to be silly and childlike and feel alive.
When the famous plastic lawn flamingo went on sale in 1957, it was a smash hit. Kitsch home décor accessories epitomised everything people were longing for – freedom from repression.
So, Why Kitsch in 2017?Fashion, style, and trends move in waves and cycles (that’s why, you’ll note, that Kitsch had a revival with the bold colours of the ’80s).
However, when it comes to home décor accessories, these purchases are often emotional purchases. And so, designers respond by offering consumers items that reflect society’s emotional needs (hence the love of Kitsch post-war).
And while we’re not living in a post-war era now, we are living in a very active time. There is a massive amount of civil unrest, where we see continual activism every-single-day. It’s no surprise that we’re desperate for bold colours that are punchy, loud and fun.
So, what we’re saying is, kitsch home décor accessories are super fun, and you should buy them all.
Kitsch Home Décor Accessories (and Where to Buy Them)
If we’re being honest, you’ll be able to pick up Kitsch home décor accessories pretty much anywhere at the moment; any home décor store will have items that you can get your hands on. However, we can point you towards a couple of statement pieces that’ll get the theme going nicely in your home.
Because after all, if your home isn’t up to Instagram standard – is it worth living in?
Neon Cactus Lamp by Prezzybox | £37.99
As perfectly demonstrated in the image above this little neon number will pair perfectly with all your other Kitsch pieces that you’ve been collecting all summer. You can recall the glamour and glitz of Las Vegas and classy America roadside bars in your very own lounge for just £37.99; what a steal!
An Inflatable Flamingo from House of Fraser |
Have you been on holiday this summer if you didn’t spend 45 minutes trying to get the right image of you in the pool on an inflatable flamingo? Or was that just everyone on my news feed? Either way, you can jazz your snaps up with this guy who’s sure to spice up your pool time!
The Flamingo and Pineapple Collection from John Lewis | £8.50 – £45.00
This adorable range from John Lewis will bring a little fun and colour to any kitchen, and surprisingly, in a tasteful fashion. Investing in the whole set might go against the Kitsch mix ‘n’ match philosophy but it’ll be really cute, so we won’t tell anyone!
A Velvet, Green Leaf Cushion from Made.com | £29.00
Why don’t you update your scatter cushions during your pursuit of Kitsch? These luscious, leafy pillows from Made.com are perfect for the job. This set has the tropical flair of a palm house or conservatory, in bright, rich colours and textures; their off-set matching style means they’ll work alone or as additions to existing items.
This Yellow Parrot Vase from Tesco Direct | £17.00
In the words of Tesco: “bring a touch of the tropical into your home with this bright yellow ceramic parrot vase”! How could you ever say no?
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