Why punk has a moment of nostalgia

Have we been saturated with incessant trend information thinking that the taste of 70s interiors is only represented by Scandinavian-inspired design?

And it’s on the way, with interior products from the era reissued and imitated, and with constant streams of new product launches that would have been, at the very least, inspired by this style of design.

All good things beware, because it’s hard to beat the elegant balance of form and function that Scandinavians are so good at, but such is the hype, it’s easy to sidestep the alley of history interiors which is punk, followed by its spawn, the gothic look.

Punk is having a moment of nostalgia, falling into the realms of vintage design, thanks to Danny Boyle’s miniseries Gun (Disney+) which first screened in June, weaving its way through the rise and fall of the defining punk band of the decade, The Sex Pistols.

Ceramist Jonathan Adler’s Mohawk-inspired creations take punk themes into the realm of kitsch (pacifier holders €112.50 at www.sweetpeaandwillow.com).

But, professional hazard as it may be, I am always attracted by the action towards the aesthetics of design: decorations, clothing, furniture, accessories.

In this particular case, it’s almost impossible to ignore the pointy dog ​​collars, liberal facial piercings, ripped black fishnet tights, tartan and make-up to give sunken eyes worthy of a flu-stricken Victorian child who will not survive. Winter.

Those who wore this look with pride and rebellion, gelling their locks in spikes and mohawks, and applying thick black mascara and eyeliner in the seedy bathroom of their squats back in the day, are unlikely to get away with the look now.

But with everything fashionable – including belligerent punk – the look is making its way into our homes via the catwalks. Anyone for a tartan cushion appliquéd with a few safety pins?

Even punk’s cheeky poster child herself, fashion designer Vivienne Westwood, was inspired by the interiors of her infamous 70s clothing boutique, Sex, on London’s King’s Road, which became the destination for sales retail of punk haute couture.

She’s gotten warm these days for a collaboration with The Rug Company with what’s best described as a shabby-chic Union Jack rug, colors that blend together and are ripe for styling with immaculate contemporary sofas.

    Take inspiration from this combination of maximalist interior design enriched with punk influences if you're in the mood to introduce the theme.
Take inspiration from this combination of maximalist interior design enriched with punk influences if you’re in the mood to introduce the theme.

It sells for €4,000, or maybe that’s too expensive and too “historic” for an Irish punk rocker.

Instead, how about his painterly-style Orb cushion (punks loved trying their hand at royals) and his Mouth cushion? Both could be considered bargains in comparison, costing €800.

Curiously, there’s no sign of the acid colors of ’70s punk in its interior products, or even a vague quote. Time has passed it seems and Westwood has mellowed, completing with a series of magnolia prints in his collection instead.

Perhaps Next’s tartan cushion as a relic from that era for an accessible price of €23 will provide enough nostalgia. An alternative plaid version from Dunnes Stores for £15.99 is a little punk lurking in plain sight.

Or do you remember Jonathan Adler designing a collection for H&M HOME a few years ago? His ceramics were playful and witty, full of color and character, and although he was a young snapper in the 70s, he turned to punk for a series of conversation pieces with his signature spirit to revive the look of interiors.

    Lip designs take on a contemporary feel in Mind the Gap's Neon Kiss Indigo wallpaper (€233.80 at www.dowsingandreynolds.com).
Lip designs take on a contemporary feel in Mind the Gap’s Neon Kiss Indigo wallpaper (€233.80 at www.dowsingandreynolds.com).

But it’s more art than an act of subversion, bordering on kitsch and parody, much in the same way punk parodied royalty and the establishment. Come full circle with Adler taking the iconic mohawk hairstyle and giving it the makeover treatment as a pacifier holder for €45.

A similar treatment is applied to a menorah fashioned from a Mohawk and mulberry head to accommodate seven tapered candles, priced at €100.

    The Orb cushion by Vivienne Westwood for The Rug Company quotes the 70s parodying royalty and the establishment (€800).
The Orb cushion by Vivienne Westwood for The Rug Company quotes the 70s parodying royalty and the establishment (€800).

He even brings back the mohawk as a base for a €45 match-strike. Characteristic of the home taste of the 70s when almost everyone smoked, this accessory served as a receptacle for matches to light cigarettes and pipes, although these days are more likely to be useful for lighting a chi-scented candle. -chi to scent your home.

It’s also a possible gift option for the single punk rocker in your life who’s into nostalgia, or an acquisition for a younger recipient who loves vintage. Either way, Adler’s work has style and conversation-provoking references.

Mohawks, safety pins and tartan take center stage as subversive 70s subculture hits
21st century homes, writes Carol O’Callaghan

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