Updated: August 15, 2018 7:20:03 pm
“When we were young, we used to sit with our ears glued to our transistors,” my 76-year-old grandmother told me one lazy afternoon. The only source of entertainment, that red box with big dials was enough to gather people in groups, share stories and laugh together. “I remember in 1947, it was midnight and we heard Jawaharlal Nehru’s speech and danced in glee. I saw a glint of hope and joy in my father’s eyes that day.”
Then to now — 71 years have gone by. In the age of iPads and Xboxes, there is hardly any space or market for radios and transistors. There is no time for long walks or board game sessions of Ludo or dumb charades. Rarely do neighbours stop and greet each other. Siri seems to be the only constant companion in this world of online dating. Cellphones have hijacked our time and Instagram seems to be the new tool to advertise our happiness.
It’s strange how despite time moving on, suddenly living retro has become the fashion. From going back to dungarees and loose shirts to buying vintage furniture and tuning back to classic hits on stereo sets, many people are leaning towards the old. Here are some of the throwback hits which seem to have become commonplace in our lives again.
Who doesn’t love listening to old melodies? Few innovations blend digital technology with retro style as well as Saregama Carvaan. The portable digital music player looks like a radio, has in-built stereo speakers and a bank of over 5000 Hindi songs from classic Bollywood movies. It’s become quite a hit, with youngsters buying it for their parents and grandparents. LP Players are back in fashion too, and every musician worth his or her salt is releasing vinyls. Time to dust off those gramophones.
Vintage cars and bikes are the new rage. Fascinated by their history, many people have started investing in antique cars and taking part in vintage car rallies. The Ambassador, all souped up, has made a re-entry. From Yamaha RD 350 Rajdoot to the 350cc Royal Enfield Bullet, its not unusual to see groups of bikers zipping down the highway and making heads turn.
From dungarees to swing-style dresses and all-denim outfits, fashion trends are moving in reverse — straight back to the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s. Baggy pants and loose-fitted shirts seem to be the new comfy wear – especially to jazz up the “airport look”. Rounded glasses and sunglasses are back and how. Styling your tresses in tendrils like Rita Hayworth and accenting the eyes with dark eyeliner is in – again! And who can ignore those Victorian gowns and skin-tight corsets. Saris and anarkalis are back in wardrobes too with a slight modern twist.
More people seem to be taking a trip down memory lane by revamping their furniture to look like it would have 50 years ago. A large part of the credit goes to TV shows set in the ’60s and ’70s like Mad Men or the ’90s hit F.R.I.E.N.D.S! From colourful appliances to brass antiques and huge wooden desks — vintage fittings can leave you feeling warm and comfortable. From IKEA to Pepper Fry, furniture shops are catering to people who want the perfect vintage sofa set and armoire.
The more things change, the more it seems they remain the same.
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