Spending Binge!

After all the hemming and hawing and threatening and waffling I've been doing recently, I finally bought something that cost more than $2 at the thrift store -- a new rug. Well, a really-old-but-new-to-me-rug. Mostly this happened because Karly is buying a new rug. In my infinite kindness and generosity, I started "helping" her look at rugs, which actually entailed very little other than selfishly hoarding rugs in my Ebay bid basket. After enduring a day of no sleep cranky toddler, I became fed up with whining in general (mine included) and I pulled the trigger. This all occurred while riding home with an overly full stomach after a very delicious gumbo dinner, so it is possible my brain was destroyed by an overabundance of impatience, salt and sassafrass, but I don't think so. Let's check out the goods.

malayer rug

Oh, I really really hope I like it! You never know with these crazy Ebay rugs, and this one is antique with some funky abrash issues:

persian malayer

Plus I really hope the color is ok. The listing says it's rust, which should jibe with this painting:

erin williamson living room

But if that rug is actually salmon, I am skrewed. I also hope the fancy new-old rug will be ok with our couch, because if it's not then I will just have to buy another couch.

pace chrome glass table

I'm also also thinking about switching our marble coffee table out for this Pace table that I bought 8 million years ago (you can read all about that crazy saga here), but I'm worried the chrome will make all the brass look weird... I guess I'll just have to buy new lamps, too.

And this, my friends, is how I will end up living a life of poverty. Damn, you decorating domino effect.

Sleek Streak

DC superfriend and badass interior designer/blogger Raina of If the Lampshade Fits found the silver foil lining of the clouded real estate market when she landed a sweet 70s home in Denver. In celebration of her spectacular find, I'm posting a cornucopia of 70s inspired interiors that manage a modern twist on classic geometric lines. You don't have to import an entire Karl Springer showroom to get the feel -- just a dab will do ya. But a ton of brass, gold, chrome and glass never hurts, because it don't mean a thing if it ain't got that bling.

richard powers

Don't worry if you're a shy wallflower. See how subdued the 70s can be? No disco balls necessary. Via Richard Powers Photography.

joe serrins

Or you could go the other direction and bring it all on. Baughman chairs: check. Chrome and smoked glass table: check. Driftwood sculpture: check. Via Joe Serrins Studio.

desire to inspire

Ahhh... it's quiet again. A smoked glass chandelier and muted color palette ooze restrained elegance. I want to knock that superfluous flower pot off the table, though. Via Desire to Inspire.


Wheeeee, it's loud again! You could apply lipstick in the reflection of that wallpaper, and the light fixtures are divine. Not loving the starburst wall clock. Via OWI.

70s kitchen

Foil wallpaper may be the most ingenious backsplash, ever. I might have to do this in my kitchen... Via Style Files.

phillipe stuebi

Of course, I would trade my entire kitchen, the house and everything in it for these cabinets. BRASS cabinets, people. Holy Jeebus Moses! Via Philippe Stuebi.

colombe stevens

And while we're on the gold trip, I think I want to cover something, anything in these gold mosaic tiles. Maybe a headboard...? Via Colombe Stevens.

nina campbell

Nina Campbell's brass mantel is almost as delicious, but the clutter kills. Just take a mental snapshot of the brass and mirrors and close your eyes and mmmmmmmmmm. Via Domino.

jerry samuelson

If I had enough space and didn't think I might burn my house down, you can bet your sweet ass I would have an indoor firepit. Hello fondue party! Via Jerry Samuelson Photography.

fawn galli

Milo Baughman is definitely the go to designer for all things sleekly seventies. Fawn Galli breathes new life into his iconic chairs with some rockin' fabric and more awesome foil wallpaper.

nate berkus

My gay boyfriend Nate Berkus' apartment with his Baughman chair. Copious amounts of mirror action, the chrome coffee table, Arteluce lamp, and tufty time sofa complete the look. The hand chair is available here for $69. Spraypaint is the nectar of the gods. Via Elle Decor.

living etc bathroom

Cultivating a 70s vibe doesn't mean you have to keep your original 70s bathroom. Just say no to the triple threat of fiberglass tubs, formica and linoleum and say yes to burnished golden tiles, a black (!) pedestal sink and some fresh accessories. Via Living Etc.

joe serrins

Finally, the bathroom we all dream of. If not, you may be reading the wrong blog. Via Joe Serrins Studio.

Whew, that was a lot of pictures, but Raina's dreamy home score deserves nothing less. Congratulations, Raina, on your swingin' seventies pad -- can't wait to see it shine!

10 Random and Totally Subjective Truths I Hold About Art and Design

The fabulous Sherri over at The Claw tagged me for a little show and tell game of truth or... truth. Phew! I really don't do dares. Anyhoo, I decided to make it design related, since you don't really want to know all about the first time I kissed a boy, about the time that I wrecked the family van before I even had a license, or about how I was a super nerd in high school, down to my rabid fascination with the Academic Decathlon and other such socially alienating activities. Boooooring! So here goes nothing... #1. Money is Wasted On the Rich

silver cross gold pram

So, I'm having a baby, and one of the biggest initial expenses is a stupid stroller. It's like buying a mini car for your precious. Now, I caved and bought a totally pedestrian Maclaren, but what I should have gotten is this 24 carat gold plated pram by Silver Cross for a mere $12,000. Of course, for that price I would expect a full sized car, but hey -- it does have a sound system and satin interior. As an added bonus, it looks like a very stylish coffin, which is exactly what you'd like to imagine your baby in, right?

#2. Maurizio Cattelan is vying with Damien Hirst for the Overstuffed Award

venice museum

I'm not sure why, but I have seen Cattelan's taxidermied, suspended horses in person at multiple galleries and museums. Maybe a giant, hanging horse is just really hard to forget? I don't know, but this headless version seen in Venice's newly opened Punta della Dogana Museum has been haunting my dreams.

#3. Flowers Are Gross

if the lampshade fits

I know this will be a controversial statement, but I think flowers are best left outdoors. I stole this case-in-point image from La Lampshade, because Raina has a knack for eviscerating cluelessly tacky rooms. That hideous purple floral arrangement in the wrong color, shape and scale, for this room is just icing on the already ugly cake.

#4. Plants Are Not Gross

nate berkus

Plants are like the groovier, less fussy sister to the flower. They still bring some green, recycle carbon dioxide, and fill space -- just like flowers. However, they do it architecturally instead of decoratively. I'm waiting for someone to call me out on this, but it's my truth -- so take that.

#5. Gold and Chrome Go Together Like Rama Lama Lama Ka Dinga Da Dinga Dong

nate berkus

nate berkus

These images are double dipped from the same Nate Berkus designed abode as above (in case you couldn't tell), and I would be totally comfortable scooping all of the furniture out, and inserting it into my own home. I love gold, and I love chrome. Never shall I be forced to choose between the two. Amen. Oh, and btw, if you live near Austin, those Pace chairs are available on Craigslist right here. That brings me to my next truth...

#6. Vintage Rules


I would estimate that 90% of my furnishings are recycled via Craigslist, thrift stores, Ebay, or some other outlet for used stuff. Who has the money to buy quality new furniture in this economy? Plus I just like a lot of the older designs mo' better. I am currently eying this brass clad footlocker trunk on Craigslist for $28. Wouldn't it make the most stylin' toy chest, ever? But if you call up the seller and tell him that it bears more than a passing resemblance to a Sarreid piece, I will hunt you down and cut you.

#7. Cheap and Cool Lampshades Are as Rare as Three Legged Unicorns


This is a nice room (except for the puny flowers) from Steven Gambrel, but there's nothing particularly standout about it. The couch, rug, other furnishings could have come from West Elm, or maybe even Target. So why is it crazy damn hard to buy a lampshade like that for a reasonable price at a big box store? You would think drum shades were all spun from Rapunzel's hair due to their cost and rarity. Ikea, where are you when I need you?

#8. Art Makes a Room


And if you're really rich, art makes your room into a museum. While us mere mortals are left to shop at Etsy and local art sales for our masterpieces, the elite collect Franz Kline paintings and Giacometti sculptures. But it's a good thing homeboy has money enough to buy the big names, because the rest of this 8,000 sq ft space is blah x snooze.

#9. Design Often Requires Stupid Compromises


Sigh. Living with another person means you already have one too many cooks spoiling the brew. For example, I told Hunny Bunny that we should totally gild all of our ceilings in brass tile like this Istanbul home. Can you believe that he said NO? He did point out that our 1980s faux wood ceiling fans would look a bit out of place next to the golden goodness of that tile, but I truly felt that was but a minor hurdle to be crossed in the vague future of "someday."

#10. Beethoven Is the New Black


Good pal that she is, Karly sent me this link because I bought a Beethoven bust at the Salvation Army and have been painting and repainting him ever since. First he was lame-o white, then I painted him turquoise (which was very cool, but too much for his setting), then he morphed into a bacterial blight of blue and white blotchiness before finally settling into a glossy black. I love my handsome black Beethoven, but in the right space he would also kick ass in sparkly gold, or work some magic in rainbow paint drips. He's just so versatile!

Well kids, that's it for all about me day. If you'd like to get lazer tagged to play this game, leave me a comment and I'll update the post. Holla!