May 19, 2021Giant novelty decor adds a dose of fun to interiors

After a year of unprecedented domesticity and adhering to a restricted style of living, people are looking for ways to invite maximalism and fun back into the home. From giant cracker cushions to retro keyboard playmats, the hunt for one-of-a-kind pointless oversized items is taking off online.

Matilda Ruck

Having enjoyed a brief period as a furnishing must-have in the late 80s and early 90s, oversized novelty decor eventually fell off the map in place of a more refined, minimalist look. But after years of relative obscurity, old-school items from original supersize retailers such as ThinkBig! are selling on second-hand sites like 1stDibs and eBay for sizable amounts, with one monumental safety pin priced at $745 on 1stDibs and people paying up to $3,000 for a giant light switch. And with a giant, half-eaten corn on the cob-shaped stool becoming an unlikely interior must-have in summer 2020, brands such as Urban Outfitters and Etsy are also taking note, with items such as giant money stools available to purchase and oversized 3D bread pillows selling on Amazon. 

After months of dialled-up domestication and sheltering within the same four walls, 44% of American homeowners report feeling less satisfied with their home since the beginning of the pandemic. Yet rather than imposing order through stripped-back minimalist interiors, a year of restriction has driven up the desire for more playful aesthetics in the home, with maximalist interior trends such as ‘grandmillennial kitsch’, ‘cluttercore’, and ‘blobjects’ speaking to the shift towards more characterful interiors. And with novelty and nostalgia at an all-time high, one-off statement pieces illustrate how, with more time in their homes, people are seeking to impose originality and self-expression within their four walls.

Matilda Ruck is a behavioural analyst at Canvas8. She has a degree in politics and philosophy as well as a foundation in psychotherapy. She's passionate about exploring the interplay between creativity, psychology and culture. Outside of work, you can find her writing short stories, tending to her ginger cat Thomas O’Malley, or oscillating between yoga and karaoke practice.

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