Between “Stranger Things” mania and the return of the mullet, 1980s nostalgia is currently in full force, which one Redditor has capitalized on with their completely thrifted living room.
In a photo posted in the subreddit r/ThriftStoreHauls, the Redditor shows off a room in their home, which is populated entirely by vintage finds.
It’s as if we’ve been transported 40 years into the past. There’s an old TV, a glass orb lamp, and a plastic landline telephone. That’s not to mention the vast collection of video cassettes and DVDs, which can be played on the retro VHS and DVD player sitting in a wooden television cabinet.
The Redditor has collected some true cinematic classics. On display are video tapes of “Romeo + Juliet,” “RoboCop,” and “The Fly,” to name a few.
“I was lucky to start collecting when the mom and pop rental shops started going out of business,” they explain in a comment. “That paired with hanging out in online VHS groups and visiting flea markets and thrift stores I’ve been able to get a lot of rare stuff for cheap.”
The outer cases of VHS and audio cassettes are made out of recyclable plastic, but the tape used is often a phthalate-laden polyethylene, which cannot be recycled. This tape also tends to be coated with toxic metals, which help to make each cassette tape magnetic.
That means that not only are cassette tapes difficult to recycle, but they are also unsuitable for landfills — when they break down, toxic metals can contaminate the surrounding soil and groundwater.
The video cassette thrifting boom has been touted as a good solution for keeping these chemicals out of landfills, although VC Star notes that it may simply be delaying this end of life journey, rather than actually diverting it.
GreenDisk collects “technotrash,” such as video cassettes, once thrifters have finished with them. The organization works with a network of nonprofits to refurbish old media or to separate out the materials and recycle them as much as possible.
“A literal badass time machine. This is awesome,” one user comments.
“This transported me back to my childhood,” another user writes. “You got the feel of the eighties down pat, which is actually a mish-mash of sixties/seventies hand me downs with a few new eighties items, as not many couldn’t afford to buy all the new eighties items at once. Top effort and thanks for the memories.”
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