In the last few years, Bohemian décor style has become quite popular among design and fashion trends. For those not familiar with the term, if a room is said to be decorated in a Bohemian style, it means it is filled with Bohemian style accessories such as re-purposed pieces and reclaimed materials. Moreover, it can also be a trendier space composed of colourful patterns and eclectic pieces that have been collected from all over the world. There are numerous ways to create a Bohemian style room and use different Bohemian style accessories (be it embroider, floral or Moroccan-style cushions, decorative plates, silver vases, or frames and decorative boxes).
Many people wonder what “Bohemian” actually means – whether it has originated as a fashion or a design term and for how long it has been used. To help clarify things a little, we managed to gather a few myths and facts regarding Bohemian style. Take a look.
Myth #1: There is no better place than Bohemia
Fact: In the very past, when the word “Bohemian” was not yet used to describe interior décor styles or fashion collections, there was actually a Bohemian Kingdom. It was established in what is now Czechoslovakia and was the home of Boii (Celtic individuals who fought the Romans for control of Northern Italy in the 2nd century). The area went under control of Slavic groups in the 6th century, but the Boii people continued to lend their name to the Bohemian kingdom and its people for centuries until Bohemia was enveloped into the modern state of Czechoslovak.
Myth #2: It was fashion that brought the Bohemian term into fashion.
Fact: Although the word Bohemian has gained various meanings over the years, what all of these meanings have in common is the lack of connection with the original people or their state. In France, the word became associated with the gypsies. Later, it became used to describe the rise and development of a new kind of artistic starving lifestyle in Europe. Over the years, the lifestyle of the starving artistic remained as an identity. As the term was used to describe gypsies and latter rebellious artists by French society, it was not regarded as a compliment. However, the name and the lifestyle started to gain cultural currency as they were approved through recognized works such as ‘Scenes of Bohemian Life’, ‘Vanity Fair’ and ‘La Boheme’.
Myth #3: Bohemians where always poor.
Fact: In the middle of the 19th century, when America moved brutally into the Civil War, immigrants from Bohemia started to arrive on American shores, together with a number of political refugees who had great chances in the Bohemian government. By the outbreak of the war, it was common for war correspondents to refer to themselves as Bohemians (due to the nomadic nature of the work, or simply because it became a popular term for young writers). Two years after the war ended, the term became synonymous with journalists. By 1872, a Bohemian Club in San Francisco was considered the top spot for the meetings of well-known journalists, artists and writers.