Sunday, May 10, 2009

Monday Therapy Session

I had a chat the other day with a good friend. We always banter back 'n forth about what's piqueing our interest in the design blogosphere, so I was caught a bit off-guard when she confessed to having Design Blog-Reader's Blues - "DBRB" if we were marketing gurus...


DBRB's symptoms include:
  • Feelings of inadequacy over one's own dwelling, after viewing impeccable interiors on blogs
  • Anxiety resulting from having a bank balance that falls within the FDIC-insured limits, and which is NOT dog-eared for designerly discretionary spending
  • Home-project determination giving way to lethargy and apathy
I'm not immune to bouts of this dastardly disease, but I try to keep perspective this way: Some Design blogs are like shelter mags (what few remain!) - they showcase a home that's been professionally designed on a handsome budget, then oh-so-perfectly styled in preparation or anticipation of being featured in a publication - then the home is photographed professionally...
Just as Sharon Stone doesn't look a bit in person as she appears in Dior ads...

I would wager that published homes don't look on a day-to-day basis the way they appear in mags or websites - at least if they are actually lived in. So, like photoshopped celebs, published homes may very well be a sort of mirage...

So, is there a prescription for overcoming DBRB?

There's no way I could give up my fave design blogs, so that's not an option. I think perhaps, the key may be in proper dosing... Whenever I try to run with the show ponies (i.e. - read "top tier" design blogs), I always make sure to get a fair share of "real life" posts as well - those written by people outside the bubble of "to the trade" - that focus on family, travel, or creative endeavors.

Secondly, you always hear people say "look at the Big Picture," my advice is the exact opposite - Look at
The Details. When you see an image of a room or home that is so beautiful it makes you want to weep with desire (these fall in that category for me...)

HB April 2008
Elizabeth Dinkel Design
...Don't get overwhelmed by the perfection of the entirety, rather, pick out a detail or two you'd like to try to duplicate in your own home.
For example: When you're cruisin' your favorite haunts you may say: "Wow! Check out that
papier mâché lamp - I wonder if I could find a knock-off?" Or, "Hey! I saw a mirror just like that the other day at X store!"
My guess is if you are able to train your eye to pick up on those essential "layering" elements, you'll be pleasantly pleased with how "accomplishable" A Look can be, and that makes for a Good Prognosis!

15 comments:

marty39 said...

What a great post and so true. It is so easy to look at magazines or blog posts and feel inadequate because you either don't know how or can't afford to achieve a certain look. Finding out what makes the look is usually really inexpensive and there is always a way to substitute something and achieve the same end result. Super advice, especially since in this economy most of us are trying to do things on a non-existent budget. Thanks for sharing. Hugs, Marty

GracefulElegance said...

What GREAT advice!! Thanks for sharing :-)

my favorite and my best said...

couldn't have said it better myself. i think i have trained my eye to pick up the details to achieving a look on little to no budget. and i do suffer from DBRB??was it?? i always will to a degree. but i won't give up on the dreaming aspect of looking at beautiful rooms. in fact, I say, it's sort of like 'the secret' and all that popular self challenging stuff out there...looking at these beautiful things is really just visualizing them in your own life. nothin' wrong with a little visualization..
great post alison, really great!

Blair said...

DBRD--I definitley have had bouts of that:) This is such a fantastic post and you are so right that they are just very well styled and that it probably took days to make the room look so good. Have a great Monday!

Haven and Home said...

Great post-loved the cartoon and the pics of Sharon!

I know for me when a client shows me rooms from magazines I first tell them how much money was spent on that room. The rest of the world does not have that sort of mula! I think I have that disease too.

Carrie said...

You've given me a whole new perspective, especially when I needed it! Thanks for the great post, as always!

Under a Green Roof said...

I loved this post! LOVED. IT. I have definitely had moments when I've thought that I shouldn't write a blog, etc. since I'm not a professional, don't have a great big budget, but it is so good to appreciate both for what they are, because both are so good. And super high-end rooms are so great to be inspired by. Great post!

I *Heart* You said...

i adore that kitchen image!

corine said...

However... I was close enough to Sharon Stone to touch her about a year ago. She does look that great in real life.

MyLittleHappyPlace said...

Corine:
Hoooow is she gorge in person? Did the paps photoshop in sagging skin? Was she "made up" when you saw her? Hmmm....somethin' fishy afloat! ;)

JMW said...

I've just come across your blog and really enjoyed this entry. For Mother's Day, my husband gave me a consult session with an interior decorator. I'm a bit nervious, b/c I'm sure she's worked with clients who hand over their check books and say "Go to it." So, I appreciate your comments on picking out simple aspects of rooms that you like and trying to incorporate a similar look in your own home.

Sarah Danielle: Jeune Marie said...

This is so true - I am not a design guru - so I like to focus on little odds and ends that make my home feel special.

corine said...

Oh yeas, she was totally made up. it was for a Showtime event. But still, there was no photoshop in the room and she 50 (or older). She has amazing skin and her bone structure is just unfair. i came home disgusted by my own mediocrity.

frida said...

A friend of mine had her house featured in our city magazine and it's amazing how staged the photos are. I'm so naive. But of course it still makes me feel like a loser with all my shit piled up on the coffee table 24/7. But I agree...you have to limit the design blogs because otherwise it's like overdosing on chocolate cupcakes.

Sarah's Fab Day said...

I suffer from thise syndrome quite often. I love your idea of keying in on something and making it work in your home. Such good advice