Great thoughts Jon around the resurgence of designing with making, and a closer relationship to people as individuals and collaborators rather than faceless “users.”
When I was still in the Bay Area, we remodeled our house and were lucky enough to work with 2 architects on the design; one of them stayed on and brought in another architect and they performed all the rough and finish carpentry for the entire project themselves. This hearkens back to the historic architect as builder and I found the entire experience a joy. In addition to the wonderful craft of their work, I believe the project was easier and faster as there was no middleman in the communication stream, we understood each other easily and were able to make changes on the fly.
A complementary movement is Design Thinking / Service Design, where as you mention the “old” notions of mass production and one-size-fits-all give way to really understanding both functionally and emotionally what a person’s needs are and helping them get there.