Is class a factor to ‘good taste’ in interior design?

Anon 7 (no date) states that the legitimate taste of the society is the taste of the upper class. This opposes the idea of genuine good taste, as the legitimate taste is only a class taste. Anon 7 (no date) suggested that class may give you a superiority and the upper class’s taste is more valued. The writer uses the bold statements: “one’s social class determines one’s taste.” and “upper classes tend to signal their superiority, and they act as the initiators of new trends.” These statements suggest that class plays a vital role in someones taste.

Millard (2011) suggested that in the past people used to speak in hushed tones about taste in interiors, as if it were a matter of class. But now this has changed according to Millard (2011) as she questioned: “are we are all supposed to be living in a meritocracy, has the idea of the importance of class in taste disappeared?” This suggests that interior design is now less about class and privileges anymore it’s about the ability and talent of the designer (Millard, 2011). Within interior spaces Millard (2011) suggested that anything can be in good taste, as long as it is given the right environment. This shows that good taste isn’t something we are luckily gifted with or about class, everyone has it but it needs to be effectively used in a suited space. She suggests that we now have more freedom to design.

Millard placed a swing within her kitchen but is this good or bad taste to the upper class?


Figure 2: (Anon 8, no date)

Hinton (2009) suggested that “designing for taste is about understanding those pecking orders well enough to play them, manipulate them” this suggests that understanding the different classes of tastes rather than just your own is more effective. Also it suggests that that taste doesn’t have to be one sided to your preferences. and a good design based on taste isn’t just about what you like. It is about also understanding other tastes which are unfamiliar to you. Experiencing your tastes around you can result in a better design than one which is solely based on your vision (Hinton, 2009). Although it can be suggested that taste doesn’t need to be justified because it can be hard to blend styles, tastes and needs so you don’t have to consider other people tastes. It is your individual taste and doesn’t need clarification (Bleasdale, no date).

From these arguments it appears that the idea of good taste is from class is a very controversial issue and an opinionated subject with no right or wrong answer, it is a personal view.


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