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LIKE so many others her age, Casey Barber, 33, furnished her home with affordable basics from major retailers, pieces like that requisite “Ikea table that is still making the rounds after all these years,” she said.
But when it came to accessories, M
s. Barber, a writer and the editor of the Web site Good.Food.Stories., took care to search out the unique and handmade — things that communicated her personality and a certain sense of authenticity.
One of her prized possessions, which hangs in the stairwell of the house she shares with her husband in Clifton, N.J., is a graphic print by the small studio JHill Design, depicting the bridges of Pittsburgh, where Ms. Barber grew up. She also has a number of other art posters bought on Etsy, the crafts Web site, along with a few antique maps, a collection of postcards from the 1940s and ’50s and a cardboard bust of a bison that she bought at a shop in Chicago that sells antiques and quirky home accessories.
But recently, all this authenticity has begun to wear on her. Objects she once would have valued for their uniqueness have begun to seem like a “design uniform,” Ms. Barber said, now that the popularity of “one of a kind” things has become so widespread.