These Georgian pastimes have increased in popularity since lockdown
Call it Regencycore or the Bridgerton effect, but all things Georgian are suddenly in fashion again. Whether it’s the fashion – searches for corsets have skyrocketed by 39 per cent, according to eBay – or the hobbies, including drawing, sewing and knitting – there’s no denying that we are seeing a surge in popularity for ‘accomplished’ pursuits.
Facing another month (or more) in lockdown, and with the weather making outdoor activities a little less than appealing, many of us have taken up hobbies last enjoyed in the 18th century. Elizabeth Hurley has been making marmalade, Bell Hutley is investigating the possibility of crafting a miniature dolls’ house, and Alexa Chung has been getting arty with felt-tips.
And it’s not just the smart set getting crafty. According to Hobbycraft, sales of acrylic paints and canvases are up by 369 per cent and 207 per cent respectively, while cross-stitch kits have risen by a giant 545 per cent.
‘Throughout the pandemic we’ve seen increased demand for all things craft, but traditional crafts and those synonymous with the regency era, such as needlework and art, are definitely the most popular. Home crafts such as needlework and art have stood the test of time,’ Katherine Paterson, customer director at Hobbycraft, told The Times. ‘During the lockdown periods, customers have returned to these crafts, as skills to learn or rediscover, but also, many of our customers tell us it offers them escapism and the therapeutic nature of crafts such as embroidery and cross stitch for example, helps them to switch off.’
According to eBay, embroidery hoops are also taking off, with a 65 per cent in news searches, while even cumbersome piano fortes – the prized possession of many a society debutante in the Regency period – have seen a rise in searches of 20 per cent.
Looking for a break from Zoom socialising or boxset bingeing? Crafting might just be for you.
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