Continuing on my pop-culture theme for today, what is that thing attacking SJP's neck?
Um, the year 2000 calling and it wants its stupid flower-trend pin back. Thanks.
Nevertheless, despite the flower attacking SJP, I am actually very excited about the movie. Very. Right near the end it started to mean something, like when Miranda had to take care of her disoriented mother-in-law. I am looking forward to seeing what comes next.
Credit to PerfecctBound.blogspot.com. that's the first place I saw that crazy-ass flower...
Sunday, September 30, 2007
IMDB bills the show as: "A group of successful female executives who have been friends since college turn to each other for guidance as they juggle their careers with family in New York City."
With the official ABC site announcing on a ticker at the top of the page, "65 Days, 07 Hours, 07 Minutes, 29 Seconds till the Season Premiere..." this shit needs to be better than Sex and the City. That's all I'm sayin'.
Of course it won't, because it will be on ABC, so it's going to be some watered down version of something we've seen before, right?
Yep. This here house number sign makes my shit-box look so fancy!
One thing that drives me fiance totally fucking nuts about me is that I have very definite opinions on certain topics, and I don't just think I'm right... I *know* I am. So, I was thinking yesterday about a few things I know for sure and was thinking you Decorno readers might have a few more to add to my list. Seriously. I want to do one long entry on 50 things that are wrong... now always and forever.
Here's a start:
1. Lace. Lace is gross and tacky. Even as an accent, it's always foul. I saw a woman yesterday wearing a lacy/sheer top (skin tight) over a camisole. It was such a desperate 40-year-old-couger-in-a-bar look. Lace is vulgar on your person and just lame in your home.
2. The fake-fancy house number plaque thingies people have made for their home (see photo above). Your McMansion or your McTract House are not glorious estates. You don't need a fucking plaque proclaiming YE OLDE GRAND ESTATE ON CHERRY STREET. This is what house numbers are for. For the uninitiated, they are little numbers that go on your house. Not a plaque on your front lawn or inset on some large boulder anouncing your home as though it's on the National Historic Register.
3. Calling your babysitter a nanny. Unless she lives with you, she's not a nanny. Quit trying to elevate yourself through language. It's desperate.
4. Car ranching. We live in a cute neighborhood that lacks garages in many cases. Our new-ish neighbors have taken to parking on their lawn when they have big parties so that (I am assuming) they can offer more street parking to their guests. Why don't the neighbors simply park a block away? Car ranching is bad for your lawn and worse for your self-respect. It's about time someone lets them know.
5. Matching "work suits" in poly-blend fabrics from Macys. My massive office building shares space with a government agency and the women who work there are like extras from Working Girl. A woman in the elevator had a khaki-green skirt/jacket combo that was wrong on a few levels, but was also skin tight and waaaay short. The whole look was clearly purchased as a set. Matchy-matchy is always trouble. Ill-fitting matchy-matchy is worse. Said government agencies should just let people go business casual... most people look better in jeans than when they are trying to play dress up and miss the mark.
6. Non-leather stretch boots. If you really need a weather-proof boot, buy Hunters or something similar. But if you must wear a bitchy, zip-up, knee-high point boot, it should be leather. Anything else looks like it's part of your naughty nurse costume.
7. Fake-fancy pronunciations. I have a friend who pronounces Aberdeen with an "ah" as in avacado, rather than the more down-home and correct "a" as in apple. This friend should know better, but likes to fancify words unnecessarily. Come on. It's Kurt Cobain's white-trash home town. There isn't anything fancy about it.
8. Having no proper sidewalks in an incorporated area. I get it if you live in the sticks, but I just get creeped out in neighborhoods with no sidewalks. My first house growing up was like this. There were probably some people car ranching, too. I'll never live like that again.
9. Fake flowers. I know that Miles Redd or someone recently said in domino that it's ok in certain occasions, but he's wrong. Fake flowers are always a bad idea. Always.
10. Target art. I don't care how lovely the B&W framed photo is, it's not very original and you'll be staring at the same thing 100,000 other people will have in their homes, as well. Just because it's a lovely birch tree photographed amongst the fog doesn't mean it's not this decade's Nagel. Take it down, call your local art school, and buy something original.
11. Tiffany. Ok, I am bending the rules here because Tiffany isn't wrong now, always and forever. Just now. Everything Tiffany you have (we have, that is) that actually says "Tiffany," let's put it back in the little blue pouch and gently let it go into hibernation in the jewelry box. Too much conterfeit, too many locations in bad malls, the Tiffany brand is just "mall luxury" now. Like Coach, it has lost its appeal. It's too out there, too common, too much a uniform now of a certain conventional look. And to the woman wearing the noisy bracelet or the necklace, she thinks it's this awesome badge and we just yawn.
12. Juicy anything, especially these little numbers. If you have 'em, admit it. Walk to the closet and throw out. You know they are over. Go ahead and let go. You'll only make space for better weekend wear.
13. Buying books ONLY for the cover. I know we've seen this book in Decorno rags and on blogs for months and months now, and I don't want to step on the tender hearts of my blog friends, but I don't get it. It's totally ok to buy books for shelf-appeal. I love the idea of organizing your books by color rather than topic, etc., etc... but even the books I have because the cover seduced me, only made it into my life because the content was also of interest. Having I Married Adventureon your coffee table and not having read it is just the designer-y version of fancy-ing up your suburban ranch home with a house number plaque. :) You know who you are, ladies and you're on notice! You'd better read that damn Adventure book now, huh?
Labels: Things that are wrong.
Friday, September 28, 2007
Very interesting (or "inneresting" as my fiance likes to point out is the favored pronunciation by idiots):
Today's NY Times article on the "happiness gap" between men and women.
Last year, a team of researchers added a novel twist to something known as a time-use survey. Instead of simply asking people what they had done over the course of their day, as pollsters have been doing since the 1960s, the researchers also asked how people felt during each activity. Were they happy? Interested? Tired? Stressed?
The Happiness Gap Not surprisingly, men and women often gave similar answers about what they liked to do (hanging out with friends) and didn’t like (paying bills). But there were also a number of activities that produced very different reactions from the two sexes — and one of them really stands out: Men apparently enjoy being with their parents, while women find time with their mom and dad to be slightly less pleasant than doing laundry.
Alan Krueger, a Princeton economist working with four psychologists on the time-use research team, figures that there is a simple explanation for the difference. For a woman, time with her parents often resembles work, whether it’s helping them pay bills or plan a family gathering. “For men, it tends to be sitting on the sofa and watching football with their dad,” said Mr. Krueger, who, when not crunching data, enjoys watching the New York Giants with his father.
...Mr. Krueger’s data, for instance, shows that the average time devoted to dusting has fallen significantly in recent decades. There haven’t been any dust-related technological breakthroughs, so houses are probably just dirtier than they used to be. I imagine that the new American dustiness affects women’s happiness more than men’s.
...Ms. Stevenson was recently having drinks with a business school graduate who came up with a nice way of summarizing the problem. Her mother’s goals in life, the student said, were to have a beautiful garden, a well-kept house and well-adjusted children who did well in school. “I sort of want all those things, too,” the student said, as Ms. Stevenson recalled, “but I also want to have a great career and have an impact on the broader world.”
Good luck. There's just not enough time in the day to be perfect. Read the whole article. It's quite good.
Thursday, September 27, 2007
I was a little late to the look-at-me-I-am-Stephanie-Klein party. (Very late now, given that this post I actually wrote a year ago on an old blog...)
Steph blogs about her life. Her blogs are a lot like Sex & the City episodes. Not as charming and a bit rip-off-ish, but whatever. Her blog gets a ton of hits, as I understand it, and her fans are cheery women who respond to Stephanie with the usual you-go-girl fawning that you'd expect. Her detractors, well, you can guess what they are about. They pretty much think Stephanie is just whoring her life out to get a book deal and all that. Which she's done.
Good for her. I mean it.
But here is really the only thing I have the time, interest, or inclination to criticize on her blog. It's the entry describing the scrapbook that her fiance, whom Steph pretentiously and annoyingly calls The Suitor, made for her.
AMERICA. YOU ARE ON NOTICE.
No more scrapbooking. Doesn't Stephanie find it a little creepy that her man spent time with craft glue and fancy parchment and cut pieces with little ric-rac shaped scissors and assembled this saccharine ode to her?
Maybe this is less about Stephanie and the photo-corner-weilding Suitor as it is my disdain for people attempting homey creations when something more elegant might exist to express your love and tenderness. Like jewelry. Or maybe a Katy Grannan monograph (ok, *I'd* like that and that may be be a minority position in these matters).
NO MORE CRAFTING. And for the love of god, PLEASE, no more homemade wedding invitations. This is what the fine art of engraving is for. Too broke for that (I know I am...)? Then go ahead and fire up the ol' Mac and print out something elegant. But if I receive another card with different pieces of robin's egg blue, baby pink, and chocolate paper glued together with grommets or ribbon affixed to an invititation, I am seriously marking it "Return to Sender."
This is life. We're not at summer camp. Put the scissors down. Back away from the craft glue. And if someone creates for you a tender handmade scrapbook for your 30th birthday, kindly thank them for this sweet but misguided jesture. But don't post it on your blog. You'll only shame your Suitor. And yourself.
Greek Tragedy - Stephanie Klein
Oh, and while we are on the topic, I need more than one hand to count the number of shower invitations I have received in the past year with "So and so is registered at ______." Are you serious? Do you really have so little faith that I will come with a gift that you have to violate the one rule of invitation ettiquette that I actually know? That one really bothers me.
Any etiquette horror stories from you guys? I want to collect them all and see who has the worst...
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
Portland is a place where you can afford to make your dreams come true:
NY Times article on Portland's food scene.
If you want to know other reasons why Portland, Oregon is one of the finest cities in the US, you can read this old post.
I am a big believer in getting dressed to shop. There is no question you get better service. Plus, if you pull yourself together and have a great "try on" outfit, you can slip in and out of pumps easily in a fitting room, and since you kind of have your game on, you have a kind of aesthetic and emotional armor against the "boy I am a fat fuck in this 3 way mirror" feeling.
My point is this: Nordstrom, which has its flagship store in downtown Seattle, is remodeling pretty much every portion of the first floor one section at a time, which is creating quite a mess. I ran in this weekend to buy MAC "Capricious" lipstick (Nordstrom was out of stock for the 3rd time in a row... Note to Nordstrom, go ahead and stock up on lipstick. It's offensive that you can stock 20 YSL bags and not keep enough $15 tubes of warpaint on your shelves. Get it together.)
Anyhoo, I got cornered in construction area and tried to make a break for it in the perfume aisle. I just wanted to get the hell out. No such luck. I was blocked and cornered by 2 perfume ladies.
I know what you are thinking... "Argh, pesky perfume ladies." But, no. This is the part I love. The Nordstrom perfume ladies** - if you look like you are even *kind* of trying to pull your look together - they SHOWER you with samples. Not "I am going to attack you with my sprayer" action, but seriously grab handfuls of those little sample vials and keep shoving them in your shopping bag.
I love that. I really do.
I got a stash of Hermes, Chanel, Hanae Mori (too vanilla-y, but oh well), and, finally, Bulgari Rose Essentielle.
For the 9 of you who loved my ode to Jil Sander, I have something very, very serious to confess: I just found my new favorite. I can't even describe this Bulgari business. It's not bitchy like Jil Sander and it's not rich-bitch/ball-buster-smelling at all. It's just really elegant and classic and not like overly commercial scents you catch an overwhelming whiff of when you open the bulging fall issues of fashion magazines.
It's just... perfect.
Moral: I was glad I got dressed up to shop. I don't think the Nordstrom girls take the time to load you up with samples when you're rocking a tragic Juicy tracksuit circa 2000* and schlepping around in flip flops.
*For the record, I have never owned Juicy anything. This is a point of pride.
**People like to bag on Nordstrom service these days, but I don't get it. I called ahead to have them bring some recently-altered jeans to me curbside on a weeknight so that I wouldn't have to park downtown and all I got was a "yes ma'am," and perfect service. NORDSTROM AS A DRIVE THROUGH. It doesn't get better than that.
Labels: great finds
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Yeah, that's right. 100 posts, that is.
And even though in May when Decorno started it was all about acrylic tables and zebra fucking rugs, guess what? It's BORING writing about that all day long. I wish I was disciplined like my other favorite decor blogs, and kept my posts to just the decor facts. I might be freelancing for House & Garden, too. But you know what? This is what I do for fun and for free. Therefore, I shall rant.
And these days, my list of "likes" is longer than Miles Redd interiors and giant clam shells used as ice buckets at outdoor parties. I like booze, politics, hot shoes, fur stoles, schadenfreude, Britney's extensions, good poetry, better art, kickass books, yummy lipgloss, bitchy handbags, my awesome job, NYC, and travel to exotic lands where I don't know the language and tend to lose my passport.
So, happy 100 (posts) Decorno. And a big thanks to my lurking readership which is growing by leaps and bounds, but doesn't really leave comments. (...Weird, but I am glad you visit, anyway. Maybe you have no fingers? Or no keyboards? No matter...)
So here's the thing:
What should the next 100 posts be? More photos? More decor? Or more pop culture? Or more fashion? If you read this blog regularly (and the numbers tell me a few thousand do every month...) what would you like to see more of?
Because Decorno loves you. Yes, that's right... Decorno loves you.
You'll have to excuse me now. I have to go blow out 100 candles.
Labels: Happy Fucking Birthday
I superduper love Assouline AND the blog Habitually Chic. It's so consistently good I read it every day.
I want to buy a dirty old brick warehouse in Georgetown in Seattle (my city, yo) and turn the place into a dark, stark, book-filled fantasia JUST like this Assouline store pictured here.
Monday, September 24, 2007
Somewhere in NYC this kickass girl rides around on her bike, carting her, i dunno, portfolio of beautiful fucking art, and then she stops at some cafe to smoke a Marlboro with her friends Ang and Guillermo and then she rides off into the night and has wild art-student-sex with her hot classmate who transferred from Bard College. Or something.
Her life is full of magic and unicorns and awesomely red hair and fashion. Total, fucking, this-shit-comes-easily-to-me fashion.
I give up, man. I simply give up. Hand me an acrylic sweater and elastic pants, because I can just never get to this level.
Yeah, I stole this photo from The Sartorlialist. Can you believe this shit? He snapped this photo on the street.
Go ahead and click the photo to enlarge. Don't be shy. You've gotta see this one up close.
Read this post to join the fun and see other photos of Zoe before and after this alleged facelift...http://decorno.blogspot.com/2007/09/rachel-zoe-this-cant-be-face-of-36-year.html
Do we think she's had work done? I think there is a whole lotta something going on there. I think it's been pulled back and I also think she's gotten both Botox and Restylane. We love to hate her, but she does look better. MUCH better.
I am totally getting Restylane for the wrinkles between my eyebrows. Smooth that shit out, my friends.
Labels: crimes of fashion
Saturday, September 22, 2007
Reader comment from Habitually Chic told me to go see Rachel photos from style.com... that *maybe* RZ had some work done. I think so. What do you guys think? I think she is looking more vampy and pulled-back. They eyes are more catlike and weird. But she looks better smooth than like the wrinkled old bag she was before. Here's the allegedly new face:
I actually thought her moment was over, and then the NY Times Magazine prints a 5-page article on Rachel Zoe, celebrity stylist.
That face. It's the face you get if you've chain-smoked Lucky Strikes since middle school and used your head as a catcher's mitt. (Confidential to Zoe: It's called sunscreen, La Mer, and eating a big fat burger every now and then, Rachel... as you age you can either keep your ass or your face, and you should pick door #2, my friend.)
She says she's 36 and I could hardly pay attention to the rest of the article because there is NO WAY your face can look like this at 36.
Harvey Weinstein, the former Miramax honcho who is sleeping with one of the designers of Marchesa, bought the rights to Halston and now Zoe's on board trying to resurrect the disco-fabulous brand. Good luck. Her style is so specific and so 2.5 years ago, she's going to have to get people to buy into her drippy, coke'd-up look all over again and then make us swallow Halston. Not so sure about that.
I do want her shoes & jewelry, though. Bitch has closets that will make you weep with envy.
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
I was craving a very vintage mink stole, so I got one on Ebay last year. I have to say, I love it. I think it's chic and retro and the perfect thing to throw on this time of year when it's not bitterly cold, but certainly cold enough.
But, you know, it's fur.
I don't believe in new fur. I won't buy it. As a buyer, I am not interested in carrying it for my customers, either.
But vintage, I keep rationalizing, is already dead.
My friend JJ, a lady lawyer I might add, isn't buying it. I think her point of view is that I am still creating a market for it (chime in here, JJ, if I am misrepresenting you...).
And yet, I still love the fur. I wore it to Sun Liquor the other night with my bitchiest Guiseppi Zanotti shoes and I felt very glam. Luckily, no one threw paint on me.
Wondering what you all think of fur, real or fake, new or vintage, on your body or in your home. Sometimes fashion needs an ethics class, I suppose. Let's discuss.
Labels: design ethics
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
I was at Bergdorf Goodman in NYC recently, cruising the cosmetics buffet that is the lower floor, and I happened upon this smartly dressed kid who was standing Vanna-White-like in front of this killer display of lip glosses. Lo and behold, this young guy is Edward Bess, beauty entrepreneur and incipient cosmetics titan.
He has an exclusive deal with Bergdorf to sell his lipsticks and glosses there. He gets points just for totally having his act together at the tender age of 21, but the product, I must say, puts him over the top. I hate gloss as a rule (Nars was my favorite, but it leaves a bad taste). The Edward Bess lip gloss, however, is perfection. Gorgeous, shiny color and just a hint of flavor. Not chemical-y at all. Plus, the logo, the packaging... it's all modern perfection.
I was sold.
I bought the red gloss and had him sign it with a Sharpie. Makes me smile every time I pull out that autographed tube of gloss and gussie up my kisser.
You go, Edward Bess.
Monday, September 17, 2007
These are the first days of fall. The wind
at evening smells of roads still to be traveled,
while the sound of leaves blowing across the lawns
is like an unsettled feeling in the blood,
the desire to get in a car and just keep driving.
A man and a dog descend their front steps.
The dog says, Let’s go downtown and get crazy drunk.
Let’s tip over all the trash cans we can find.
This is how dogs deal with the prospect of change.
But in his sense of the season, the man is struck
by the oppressiveness of his past, how his memories
which were shifting and fluid have grown more solid
until it seems he can see remembered faces
caught up among the dark places in the trees.
The dog says, Let’s pick up some girls and just
rip off their clothes. Let’s dig holes everywhere.
Above his house, the man notices wisps of cloud
crossing the face of the moon. Like in a movie,
he says to himself, a movie about a person
leaving on a journey. He looks down the street
to the hills outside of town and finds the cut
where the road heads north. He thinks of driving
on that road and the dusty smell of the car
heater, which hasn’t been used since last winter.
The dog says, Let’s go down to the diner and sniff
people’s legs. Let’s stuff ourselves on burgers.
In the man’s mind, the road is empty and dark.
Pine trees press down to the edge of the shoulder,
where the eyes of animals, fixed in his headlights,
shine like small cautions against the night.
Sometimes a passing truck makes his whole car shake.
The dog says, Let’s go to sleep. Let’s lie down
by the fire and put our tails over our noses.
But the man wants to drive all night, crossing
one state line after another, and never stop
until the sun creeps into his rearview mirror.
Then he’ll pull over and rest awhile before
starting again, and at dusk he’ll crest a hill
and there, filling a valley, will be the lights
of a city entirely new to him.
But the dog says, Let’s just go back inside.
Let’s not do anything tonight. So they
walk back up the sidewalk to the front steps.
How is it possible to want so many things
and still want nothing. The man wants to sleep
and wants to hit his head again and again
against a wall. Why is it all so difficult?
But the dog says, Let’s go make a sandwich.
Let’s make the tallest sandwich anyone’s ever seen.
And that’s what they do and that’s where the man’s
wife finds him, staring into the refrigerator
as if into the place where the answers are kept-
the ones telling why you get up in the morning
and how it is possible to sleep at night,
answers to what comes next and how to like it.
-Stephen Dobyns, from Cemetary Nights
I posted this the other day, then deleted, thinking that my posts get so far off course anyway. Well, diligent and fabulous Patricia Gray called me on deleting it, and asked me to repost. So here it is.
Photo by Ethan Hill EthanHill.com
Labels: non-decor post... deal with it.
Sunday, September 16, 2007
Great photos and article here in Budget Travel magazine.
You know, I mever went anywhere until I was 30. It was just a few weeks until my birthday and I thought, crap, how provincial am I? I didn't even have a current passport. I bought tickets, got an emergency passport, and the fiance and I landed in the city of lights on my 30th birthday (last year, for anyone keeping track). Now I want to go everywhere. Argentina and Uruguay were this year. And next year it's either Montenegro, Turkey, or Italy.
What's on your list? Where does everyone want to go? What's your favorite place to go on vacation?
Saturday, September 15, 2007
Just scored this Serpui Marie bag. Yum.
Must have these YSL shoes.
Most of you know my position on the Tory Burch Reva (her signature flat). It's been over for a long time. And Tory's fall like was like a vomit-y palatte of 70s neutrals. Ick. But spring? That's when Tory does her thing. I want this whole look:
Also, this bag, I am telling you, everyone in NY will be carrying it next June. Except me. Because I don't want to carry it if everyone else has it. That's just how I roll, yo.
Monday, September 10, 2007
Sure, the papers and blogs and Perezes and and TMZs and Breitbarts of the world posted pictures this morning of this train-wreck has-been with the paunchy gut, the mushy thighs, and the extensions that look like she bought them at Rite-Aid and installed them with bobby pins.
And sure she danced like an octegenarian stripper with low energy and painful corns on her feet, kind of sluggish and just not moving quite right because "one false move and I'm gonna pull a muscle!"
And yeah, she kind of didn't bother to actually mouth all the words in the songs she was lip-synching to.
But she still has a body I have never had. And I swear to god, if I looked like her in a funny little bra and hot pants and fishnets, I would totally rock this look at the office. I would walk up to people and slap my half inch of muffin-top and say, "You like it, huh? You like that? Well, get me my TPS report, stat!"
Yes, if I had her body (even in its current state), I would rejoice, my friends, because Britney's diet of Quaaludes and Red Bull tonics has done a body right, y'all!
If I could get this body as a result of hard-livin', Cheeto-eatin', pill-poppin', coke-snortin', stranger-fuckin', well, count me in!
Normally that kind of life yeilds a more zaftig-like physique, yet our little Brit shows that there is some weird math in this universe where TOTALLY-FUCKED-UP is on the Y axis and KINDA-KEEPING-IT-TOGETHER-AND-NOT-GETTING-TOO-FAT is on the X axis, and at the point of intersection, you can still see your ribs when you suck your stomach in, you can still wear hot pants and not look too digusting, and you still...somehow, magically...net $700k a month in royalties. It's really not a bad deal at all.
Until you decide you want to live with some dignity.
Labels: non-decor post... deal with it.
Sunday, September 9, 2007
Update - next show is Sunday April 5th, 2008. Should be awesome with great vintage and antique garden stuff. I can't wait!
The elusive Sand Point Antique & Design Market show dates have been announced. Next show is Sunday Oct 14th, 2007.
The following show wil be Sunday, Dec 2nd, 2007. I cannot wait.
Early buyers get in for $10 from 8 - 10am... admission after that is $6.
The Sand Point show is the best antiques show in Seattle. Pay more to go early and get the good stuff. In the past I got a beautiful painting, a long, narrow antique wooden box with dovetail joinery that I now use under a console table to hide sneakers and flop flops and other "go-to-the-store" emergency shoes and whatnot. I also got an excellent and weird coin counter thingy... sounds dumb, but it's a flat piece of wood and is very graphic and hangs on our walls. Anyway, Sand Point is great, great, great. If you live in the northwest, it's really worth the early wake up call to check it out.
I am showing you these since I am pretty confident you won't see them. Why? Because the cover of the latest issue of O At Home is so hideous, I am pretty confident you won't pick it up at the newsstands. (It looks like Laura Ashley got drunk and made sweet, sweet love to Maria Buatta, the prince of chintz, and gave birth to the room on the cover.) And that's where I, gentle reader, come in. This is the public service I continue to provide to you day in and day out. No need to thank me. I do it because it warms my heart.
Alright, these rooms aren't perfect. The story is about an uptight DC couple who needed to shake up their conservative living & dining rooms. So they brought in a stylist (which the article actually refers to as a "fluffer" which makes me think the gay copy assistant is playing a funny, funny trick on all the Bergdorf-blond editorial assistants. So clever! They'll never know a fluffer is a person who keeps a guy hard while waiting to shoot his next scene on a porno! Brizilliant.)
Anyway, I like the rooms because they aren't to matchy and they are a little funky. *Plus,* I don't know about you, but you can troll Craigslist here in Seattle all day long and find sorry little settees and chairs like the ones features and get them recovered and dress up your room in a cool way on the cheap. I also love that the uptight console/table thingy on the right side of the dining room is balanced by the acrylic console on the other side, so that symmetry is achieved not through matchiness, but balance.
Not to mention that massive gigas clam shell on the floor under the console. It's been on my wish list forever. I think I am about to break down and get one.