Thursday, October 9, 2008

Design in a Box

What up my homeys.

About 15% of the time when I log in to post something, I have no idea what I--hold on, phone call.

That was a volunteer for the Minnesota DFL (Democratic Farm & Labor Party, a.k.a. Democratic Party). I was hoping she was going to engage me in political conversation, but she was only calling to make sure I'm registered to vote. I was actually glad she called because I have a confirmation card that tells me my polling place, but I wasn't sure if it was for one of the primaries or for the general election. I kept putting off checking on it. Crazy thing to do considering the deadline is really close for registering in advance. Sometimes you can register at your polling place but it's going to be pretty crowded this time, so doing it in advance is definitely a plus.

Anyway, as I was saying, I sometimes have no idea what I'm going to write, and this is one of those times. But I just thought of something.

My interior designer recently moved out of state. She's getting her business going in her new location, and in light of the state of the economy and the likelihood that clientele will not be easy to come by, she decided to try taking her business nationwide by offering a "Design in a Box" service: you send her pictures of a room that you want to change, and magazine clippings that inspire you, and answer a questionnaire, and consult with her by phone, and she sends you a box filled with everything you need to put a new room together: paint color swatches, fabric samples, furniture photos, and 2 space plans using existing or new furniture. It's ideal because I can shop, push a sofa and paint a wall. I just don't know how to get started and I need someone who has designed a lot of rooms and can predict what is likely to look best; otherwise I might waste money and time getting to the right place, and maybe I'll never get there.

I seemed interested so she asked for my opinion on the web page as well as the general idea. I immediately gave it, and long-windedly so. I think it's a great idea and could really take off. I emphasized that I thought the box itself (as opposed to the contents) should be cute (yes, cute) and in line with the colors/theme of the new room. I noted that I thought it was too expensive, because she specifically asked about that, but I also noted that I am not in an income bracket where I ought to be dealing with interior designers. I didn't say it quite that way, but my point was that things like that always seem too expensive to me. When I worked with her last year is was sort of a splurge, but I am sure it was worth it, because I learned a lot and I love my interior, and really it wasn't that much money in the grand scheme of things. But NEVER AGAIN! Except I can't resist the idea of saving up a little fun money so I can figure out what the hell to do with this bedroom:

It's next to our bedroom. We currently store all of our clothes in it and use it as a dressing room. It's very long but also narrow, 8' by 20', has a 7' ceiling. Dale is demonstrating how you have to walk in the middle of the room or else bump your head. Note that he also has to turn on his headlights because the lighting is less than ideal. I've thought a lot for over a year about what to do to make the room more inviting and cozy, so that it at least looks like it's being used for something, and I've googled "decorate awkward space" and similar terms many times, but I'm coming up empty. The ideal thing might be a big comfy sofa, but the cats would claim it as a scratching post. So how do I make it look cozy, or at least inviting, without upholstered furniture? Where do I put the furniture? This is where I think it would be fun to get a Design in a Box. And hopefully, the box and contents would be cute enough to put in the room as a design accessory. That would slightly make up for the high price of the service.

I would like to add that if anyone has any thoughts about what to do with this room, I would be very glad to hear them.

Stanley just got back from the sporting goods store. He bought an orange vest because he's going pheasant hunting with Dick Cheney this Saturday. He also went to the gourmet grocer and picked up dessert, so I gotta go.


MJB said...

maybe you could cut a dormer out of that sloped roof side to make the room open up. sounds like a project stanley and his dad would enjoy...if its possible.

Lois Rosewood said...

You could put a twin bed in there; that way you could cover it with any color blanket or bedspread that you like -- plus throw pillows to make it look cozy. It would be easy to change the look if you got tired of it. Then you'd also have somewhere to sit when you are pulling up your pants or putting on your socks, (etc.)

Another idea is a wicker chair or loveseat, although it would need to be dark colored to blend with the dresser.

Hazel Spupspe said...

mjb: That would definitely be the best option. It probably won't happen anytime soon, due to the current economic uncertainty, as well as Stanley's oft-uttered desire to hold off on major projects in favor of enjoying himself. But I still couldn't resist imagining what a dormer might look like, on the inside and outside. We've already got a dormer on the other side of the 2nd floor, in our bedroom. I'm pretty sure the whole thing used to be open, with sloping roofs on both sides, and at some point was split into two rooms, and a dormer added in our bedroom. It was a good move.

lois rosewood: The twin bed idea is great. I think I'm going to do it. The cats will not claw a bed. Stanley has cured them of any inclination to do that; there's nothing like getting kicked across the room (gently of course) to discourage one from doing again whatever one was doing just prior to becoming airborne. So I'll set it up to look like a sofa, and it automatically gives the room extra uses in addition to dressing room: lounge and extra guest room. Now I'm really fricking excited. Just have to figure out a color scheme.