Interiors: Retire in style
- Credit: Archant
Merging the styles of a misspent youth with the hottest technology around is a great way for retiring and downsizing baby boomers to ensure their new property steers well clear of fuddy duddy
Retirement is a doubled edged sword if ever there was one. You’ve suddenly got the freedom (and often the money) you always wished for when juggling careers and children, but you no longer have the hips to go with it.
Still, there are ways of making the best of the situation: the kids are no longer at home so lets face it, you don’t need all those extra bedrooms. Instead you can invest in a fabulous apartment (lateral living without the dreaded bungalow), in a hipper, more urban part of town – who gives a damn if it’s near good schools?
And even better, you can use the opportunity to refresh your interiors mingling the old with the new. Your memories will be preserved but the technological advances of tomorrow won’t pass you by.
Whether opera buff or folk rocker there are plentiful ways for you to turn up to 11 and settle in to enjoy your favourite sounds in uninterrupted peace.
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If you’ve jettisoned your old record collection in favour of shelf space and nowadays download or stream music onto your iPhone, then instead of going for a standard black-box speaker, take a look at the Acoustic iPhone Speaker Horn Radio Stereo (£125 plus US shipping costs, etsy.com/uk).
This show-stopper is made from wood and brass and makes for a stylish way to listen to your desert island tunes, with an ironic nod to the past.
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Relaxation is a prerequisite of retirement, at least in theory, and where better to relax in the Natuzzi Italia 2506 Sound Chair (£2,330, abitare.co.uk) This delightful haven of leather comes complete with speakers – not to provide assistance to the hard of hearing (although it may well help), but to give you the very best in sound quality. Whether it is the dulcet tones of John Humphreys on the Today show, Beethoven’s 5th or some good old rock’n’roll, you can enjoy it without headphones here.
If films are your passion, there are the usual items out there to satisfy your fandom. But if you decide that a more structural piece is needed, look no further than the Libra Vintage Floor Lamp in Antique Brass (£675, John Lewis). Giving off a gentle glow, you would half expect to see David O Selznick come out with a megaphone from behind it, telling Vivien Leigh to stop fidgeting and to push that Southern drawl in a scene from Gone With The Wind.
If you’re thinking of moving from a house to a flat, you may be contending with the loss of your garden. While this could be a blessing in terms of maintenance, it could also spell the end for a favourite hobby. Take heart in the fact that balconies and roof terraces have become big business and window boxes are the new flowerbeds. You may not be able to tend a lawn up there, but potted plants and raised beds offer countless opportunities for creative gardeners. Be sure to pick up the Modern Illuminated Square Bevelled Pot (£189.99, glolight.co.uk). These wonderful creations light up at night, housing your fuchsias or buxus, giving you the perfect ambience for sitting outside and providing a guiding light to those who might be lost below.
There are so many ways to enjoy your new home and re-assert your identity through your interiors, offering a nod to the hallowed Summer of Love style while fully embracing all the tech on offer nowadays. You’ll just have to hope the kids don’t get so jealous they want to move back in.