Find your diamond
Find your jewelry
shape
carat
color
clarity

Is anyone here old enough to remember when quality mattered?

Karl_K

Super_Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Aug 4, 2008
Messages
10,819
Sort of, I think it was going down hill fast around the time I was born but there were a few things still well made.
Levi when they moved to Mexico then China and elsewhere went to junk status.
They have small production runs that is made in the US but they are not even close to the old days.
 

Daisys and Diamonds

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 30, 2019
Messages
8,738
yes
and it still matters to me
i often say i don't have much because i won't waste money on cr#p and can't afford the good stuff

my dad spent his entire working life at a NZ furniture factory - from a 15 year old apprentice to general manager and a director of the firm
He must be turning in his grave at all the imported throw away rubbish people buy now.

When i was a wee kiddie, he used to do perk jobs reulpulstering (excuse spelling) furniture
I can't imange a lot of the stuff made now lasking long enough to be reulpustered


its because (some) people don't have the patience to save up for the good stuff

We sit on furniture we brought pre loved - its older and I'd love to get it recovered because it was quality and has good strung bones (but the price of foam is very high)

and people today seem to want everything to be cheap not taking into account the wages the person who make it needs to make a liveable living - regardless of where im the world that person lives

i have clothes in my wardrobe that are 25 years old made in NZ that are excellent lasting quality compared to the disgusting (in every sence of the world) fast fashion available down at the mall

A lot of this is consumer driven because today's society is so self centered overly focused on themselves and instant gratification
 

jordyonbass

Brilliant_Rock
Trade
Joined
Dec 6, 2014
Messages
1,920
Some stuff is better than ever in my opinion. The technology and durability of outboard boat motor technology is at a peak with so much intricacy and reliability built into today's motors. The total stations I use for land surveying are also far more superior in both function and quality than the old gear.

Fishing gear too, there's some really nifty stuff on the market that can pump out more drag pressure than I can believe sometimes.
 

LilAlex

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Mar 3, 2018
Messages
778
Abe Simpson, is that you?

My jeans would last 138 years if they were kept in a vault, too.

I remember Levis from the 60s. Maybe they would last forever but the first decade was miserable. :cool2:

I'll take shorter lifespan with comfort from day one!
 

Made in London

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 11, 2020
Messages
398
Abe Simpson, is that you?

My jeans would last 138 years if they were kept in a vault, too.

I remember Levis from the 60s. Maybe they would last forever but the first decade was miserable. :cool2:

I'll take shorter lifespan with comfort from day one!

I had my first pair of Levi's when I was thirteen. I was told to wear them & sit in a cold bath for an hour & that they would shrink to fit my body.I did sit in a bath of cold water & they did shrink a bit & I also had blue legs! They were so stiff that people joked that you could stand them up at the bottom of the bed & jump right into them in the morning
 
Last edited:

Made in London

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 11, 2020
Messages
398
When my parents married many,many decades ago, they bought a fridge & a Hoover, a gas oven. & a top loading washing machine with a mangle(wringer) on the top. They still had the same appliances over 65 years later & they worked perfectly.
 

ForteKitty

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Oct 7, 2004
Messages
4,786
I had my first pair of Levi's when I was thirteen. I was told to wear them & sit in a cold bath for an hour & that they would shrink to fit my body.I did sit in a bath of cold water & they did shrink a bit & I also had blue legs! They were so stiff that people joked that you could stand them up at the bottom of the bed & jump right into them in the morning

That sounds miserable! There's nothing worse than wearing jeans with zero stretch. I was thrilled to ditch my levi's for some yoga pants.
 

stracci2000

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 26, 2007
Messages
4,989
I had a pair of button fly Levis that I wore from the age of 16 till I was maybe 22. They faded a little and got softer, but they held up to almost daily wear.
I wish I knew whatever happened to them........
 

seaurchin

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 2, 2012
Messages
1,786
I think we are way too much a "throwaway" society with unnecessary damage to the environment, wasted money, etc.

That said, some things like cars seem far better made than they used to be and will last many years if taken care of.

Also, let's not forget there is and always was a strong correlation between quality and cost and paying for the best quality is not always the best option. I've had cheapo furniture last decades when it would have been foolish of me to spend for top quality at the time, for one example.

And then people's preferences, sizes, lifestyles and so on change with time so it doesn't automatically make sense to spend for a pair of pants that will last for over a century lol.

So, I dunno. Plusses and minuses I think but definitely something to think about.
 

yennyfire

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jun 6, 2010
Messages
6,648
My favorite things are older than I am!

I have my maternal grandmother’s hand mixer and I have my paternal grandmother’s original Kitchen Aid, both still used frequently.

I prefer to buy quality pieces that last and still have the sofa I bought 28 years ago and it’s in great condition, despite two kids and various pups. My washer and dryer are 27 years old and still do a great job. I will hold onto them until they die and absolutely can’t be repaired. My parents are the same way. Many of their furniture pieces are older than I am and they both still have sweaters from their college days (early 60s).

I hate that so many things today are built with “planned obsolescence”. We are not teaching our children the value of respecting things, working hard to earn them and taking care of them properly. It’s maddening!
 

rocks

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 13, 2003
Messages
785
Sort of, I think it was going down hill fast around the time I was born but there were a few things still well made.
Levi when they moved to Mexico then China and elsewhere went to junk status.
They have small production runs that is made in the US but they are not even close to the old days.

I have a pair of levi’s and lee jeans (mid 70’s) and a lee Jean jacket (1971) that are still quite wearable. The levi’s are perfect....I’ve babied them. About 10 years ago I was in the Ralph Lauren flagship on Madison and one of the managers wanted to buy the Jacket!
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
29,411
My 1972 corduroy FFA (Future Farmers of America) jacket is still in great condition, probably because ... well ... starting decades ago it gradually and mysteriously shrunk. :oops:
 

Daisys and Diamonds

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 30, 2019
Messages
8,738
what about buildings?
im talking non residential commercials type
they are made here with the intention of only lasting 50 years before being torn down and something more modern goes up
 

Dancing Fire

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 3, 2004
Messages
32,628
I'd avoid any chinese made products when ever I can. I'd prefer to pay more for made in the USA or Japan. I.E...Christmas tree stands made in China only lasted 2 yrs before they fall apart, then 20 yrs ago I bought a made in USA solid steel stand from HD. Today it can still hold up a 8' Christmas tree w/o any problem. These solid steel stands will last forever.
 

MrsBlue

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 30, 2013
Messages
229
I have an old Swiss-made sewing machine than runs like a dream. I have a newer one that's easier to use in some ways but the basic stitch quality is not the same.

I also have some older pieces of clothing that were made from natural fabrics and are beautifully finished inside and out. I can't imagine what those same items would cost today. Be nice if I could fit into them...

My newer knitting needles are the bee's knees though. Love love love them.
 

Polabowla

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 15, 2019
Messages
1,467
Contrast that with my washing machine & fridge that needed repair after 6 months ... ugh
 
  • Like
Reactions: JrJ

inne

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 12, 2019
Messages
148
what about buildings?
im talking non residential commercials type
they are made here with the intention of only lasting 50 years before being torn down and something more modern goes up

And residential buildings! I've owned 2 houses, both over 100 years old, both originally built for working class people, neither updated in any significant way by previous owners. These were definitely not designed to be fancy houses. But the quality is just amazing! And the finishing touches - the mouldings, the baseboards, the carvings on the front door - they would certainly not be found in homes geared toward working class people now. Even quite nice, custom homes use much cheaper materials for them.

Of course, there are absolutely gorgeous, well-built new homes. But you do not see the same widespread craftsmanship and durability made available to so many people.
 

Daisys and Diamonds

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 30, 2019
Messages
8,738
And residential buildings! I've owned 2 houses, both over 100 years old, both originally built for working class people, neither updated in any significant way by previous owners. These were definitely not designed to be fancy houses. But the quality is just amazing! And the finishing touches - the mouldings, the baseboards, the carvings on the front door - they would certainly not be found in homes geared toward working class people now. Even quite nice, custom homes use much cheaper materials for them.

Of course, there are absolutely gorgeous, well-built new homes. But you do not see the same widespread craftsmanship and durability made available to so many people.

absolutely
Our house is a no frills ex state house built in 1959
that makes the old girl 70 years old
she hasn't had much love or TLC in those 70 years but she's doing pretty good, just needs decorating (and some indoor outdoor flow) she has strong bones

its just a shame some of the tenants who rented this house were so rough with her because she had lovelly native timber door and mouldings but they have been abused so are now painted
im reluctant to look under the paint although i already have the paint stripper
ill probably have to replace them with pine which is at least nicer than mdf

i wish the interior doors were solid like in the Californian bungalow i grew up in because then i wouldn't have to replace every single one due to someone's fist or foot- they might just stay painted for a while
 

Cozystitches

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
Joined
Mar 2, 2010
Messages
1,224
Yes! The quality of many things has (unfortunately) gone so far downhill. I collect vintage sewing machines and my current favorite is from the 1950s. I make the majority of my clothes on this machine (including my undies!) using this machine. It has straight and zigzag stitch. I can only do buttonholes if I add a huge attachment (and even then I pull out the OLDER machine because the stitch is nicer). I've had new machines and they are horrible. Yes they start out nice, but quickly have issues because they weren't meant to last. I also have a 100 year old treadle machine that works just fine.

I feel the same with old houses, but hubby likes the newer ones.
 

GliderPoss

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 25, 2008
Messages
2,695
Yeah I think many items (perhaps technology aside) used to be crafted with better quality. For example my Mum still has her Kenwood Chef from her wedding! I now use her Singer sewing machine, also a wedding gift 50+ years ago. I also own some of her winter wool coats and leather boots/bags etc that she wore in her early 20’s and still look/function marvellously.

I choose to have mostly antique furniture for the same reason - it’s solid wood and already outlasted a lifetime! I find goods made cheaply in PRC are crappy quality, but of course why would we expect them to be otherwise? You get what you pay for and we’ve created an entire economy on consumerism ie. buy more! Don’t fix it, replace it! :wall:
 

DiaDiva

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Oct 7, 2004
Messages
1,929
The ceiling fan in my bedroom was installed in Dec 1977 and it worked well until 2015 when I changed it for a ceiling fan with remote control. Today, it's all about planned obsolescence...
 

mellowyellowgirl

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
May 17, 2014
Messages
4,206
I find goods made cheaply in PRC are crappy quality, but of course why would we expect them to be otherwise? You get what you pay for and we’ve created an entire economy on consumerism ie. buy more! Don’t fix it, replace it! :wall:

Hehe I have a beater, made in China that I love. It is great to use but the switch died within a year. It only works on one setting so you can only beat things at one particular very fast speed. That really annoyed me so I kept it and used it, determined to bake with that one setting. It's still going strong into it's fourth year!!!
 

MMtwo

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Sep 20, 2009
Messages
2,336
I love old watches for this reason. They were expensive at the time, but built to last 100 years. Back before we put anyone on the moon, but these fine, tiny motors were created with such precision on a work bench without computers and calculators. The hand engraving on some watch moments from the late 1800's to early teens takes my breath away. I actually have a 100 year old wrist watch in working (a watchmaker has cleaned and oiled it) order that I wear sometimes. It has engraving on the face. It was an early, early wristwatch from the teens....edit for pics 20201201_091006.jpg
 

Attachments

Last edited:

AprilBaby

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 17, 2008
Messages
11,579
My original kenmore washer and dryer lasted 30 years.
 

canuk-gal

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 19, 2004
Messages
21,579
HI:

My lovely (aged) Mother has her original Sunbeam Mixer. The cord was replaced 2 decades ago (?) and it still works. She also has the original cookbook that came with the mixer....It is the waffle recipe we all use to this day.

cheers--Sharon
 
Be a part of the community It's free, join today!
    Top Luxury Classic Pieces
    Top Luxury Classic Pieces
    Style File: Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge
    Style File: Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge
    Diamond Prices - January 2021
    Diamond Prices - January 2021

Need Something Special?

Get a quote from multiple trusted and vetted jewelers.

Holloway Cut Advisor



Diamond Eye Candy

Click to view full-size image.
Top