I love decorating magazines. Better Homes and Gardens is my favorite “all-purpose” mag, and I love their Special Interests Publications which focus on specific subjects.
Lately, though, I’ve come across a couple of things that kinda rubbed me the wrong way. The first was in the Summer 2009 issue of BHGSIP Decorating magazine.
The lovely home below was featured:
Here is a quote from the homeowner:
“ ‘I wanted heavy-duty stools for [the] kitchen…so I was a bit nervous about going retail.’ But the inexpensive stools from Crate & Barrel ‘have held up beautifully’. ”
On the same page, a sidebar entitled Retail 101 says:
“Cathy kept costs down by mixing designer pieces with retail accessories from places such as Target, Crate & Barrel, and Pottery Barn. ‘It can definitely be hit or miss, but I’ve had very good luck with several retailers.’ ”
I’m sorry, but does that sound extremely snooty to anyone besides me? I realize that most of the homes in these mags are owned by people who can afford to hire a decorator/designer, including this one. But oh my, how do the rest of us survive, shopping at Tar-jay the way we do? Our homes must be full of shoddy things and rickety furniture.
I’ve regularly read bloggers (including me) who drool over the PB catalog and try to figure out ways they can recreate the look without paying PB’s high prices. My word, it’s a good thing we didn’t waste our money there after all, seeing as it’s so “hit or miss” and everything!
Then recently I was re-reading the September 2007 issue of BHG and this line jumped out at me:
“…Brenda is not afraid to play matchmaker, pairing furniture and accessories from different decades.”
I’m going to go out on a limb and say that I’m pretty sure there are more homes in America with furniture and accessories from different decades than not. Whether or not we collect antique or vintage items, most of us probably have heirloom or hand-me-down pieces. And while we may not have a decorator to pull it all together for us, we try make it work and make our homes look good.
This is real life, folks. Couch: circa 1985, coffee table: IKEA circa 2008, windows as decor: circa 1940(?), dropleaf table: circa 1993, and reupholstering waiting room chairs with drop cloths. Family: right in the middle of it all.
Ordinary people with realistic budgets trying to make home a pretty, comfortable place. Like me. Like you. Getting creative with what we have and what we can make.
If you ask me, that’s worthy of a magazine article.