Thrift prevailed for most of the 20th century when Ireland was the poorest country in Northwest Europe. We grew our own vegetables, rarely traveled to airplanes or restaurants, repaired clothes instead of buying new ones, and were used to living in cold homes.

When the economy flourished in the late 1990s and embraced American-style consumerism during the Celtic Tiger era, skills such as cooking from scratch, making and repairing clothes, and careful household management became faded from cultural memory.

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