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Tuesday, July 6, 2010

I love you, but I can't live with you

Granny Chic.

Dumplings, the image above is from the newest issue of Lonny and has been ping pong-ing around in my brain for the past couple of weeks. When I first saw it, I thought "Wow, that's a great room!" It's not my personal style, but I'll be the first to say it is well done.

The homeowners were inspired by the set design of old Hollywood films, particularly Mildred Pierce, and saw their vision through completely. This room would never be mistaken for decorating time capsule from 1945. There is a nod to the past (the wallpaper, rug and artwork) tempered by today's simplicity (furniture and accessories with clean lines).

Would I have this style of decor in my home? Nope. But I would adore being the lucky guest invited to spend a weekend in this room.

So my question to you, Dumplings, is this - What style do you admire from afar but have no real interest in incorporating into your own home? I've listed a few examples, but feel free to share your own thoughts.

Hipster Victorian.

Traditional.

French Country.

Adler Mod.

Boho Contempo.

Mid-century Modern.

Contemporary.

Images - 1. Lonny, 2. The New York Times, 3. Elle Decor, 4. House Beautiful, 5. Metropolitan Home, 6. Marie Claire Maison Italia, 7. Unknown, 8. House Beautiful.

29 comments:

Tonia @Chic Modern Vintage said...

I've admired French Country from afar, but I appreciate all decor styles when they are done well.

Acanthus and Acorn said...

I have had a fantasy or two of all the styles that you show... except mid-century modern. A whole house or room in this style just doesn't appeal to me.

A great round up of images to illustrate your point!!!

The Zhush said...

I adore what you have named Adler Mod! I could never live in a house done to the nth degree of this "antidepressant" decor, but I love it to pieces from afar. I like to incorporate small bits of his aesthetic (and attitude) into my own home.

M.A said...

I don't do styles, trends or brands. I only buy things that I like & love.

sherri said...

I would love to live in that mid-century modern home, but must admit, I"d have to have some eclectic touches, I don't care for all of one style whatever it is. I admire the clean, stark, modern lines of the modern look,lots of white, etc. but would really feel it too clinical, impractical and cold to have in my home. Is Modern even the right design term? School me oh wise one!

Appletree said...

I adore French country and could never ever live with it.

Bromeliad said...

Thought the same thing about that room - great room but I could not sleep in it.

Adler Mod, anything with lots of color, anything with lots of pattern, anything with lots of tchotchkes. Love them all, just can't live with them.

Belly said...

Kelly Wearsler (regency, mod- whatever she's into at the moment). I actually had a chance to buy those hand chairs for 100$/pair (on a local craiglist equivalent) but the style is too cluttered for me right now.
I can appreciate stark, urban modernism, but it's way too "cold" for me, and I love me some midcentury mod- but the over exposure of this style lately has made me sick of it.

The Down East Dilettante said...

Trouble is, I'm just such a style whore. And actually, I find even the 'traditional' you've chosen to be a little too crisp and chic to qualify in the way that some Williamsburg-y room (like a cheese grater on my skin, those suburban traditional rooms).

Since my fantasy is to make so much money that I can have houses all over the world in all the styles, obviously I (like I said, a style whore) them all...though if I had to choose just one to make go away, it would be the Jonathan Adler....yes, that's it...make it stop.

Oh, who am I kidding? The hip victorian maybe not so much either....all those dead chipmunk skulls under glass....

Sharon @ Real Estate Resuscitation said...

Definitely French Country for me. While I enjoy photos of French Country rooms others have done well I just don't ever imagine it in my own home.

Good post! I look forward to reading all your reader comments.

David said...

That explains why I replied to your comment over at my house and it wouldn't show.

I love looking at rigidly modern, minimalist spaces, those rooms that are all about light and architecture, and not the things in them.

I'd never be able to live in one though, I like 'things' too much.

FROM THE RIGHT BANK said...

Great topic - I have this discussion all the time because (as you know) I LOVE everything but that doesn't mean I want or can live with it all. I think that's why I'm so into hotels. You get a taste of something different without the commitment. Hope you had a good 4th!

Three Owls said...

Love the mid century modern... but my two wee children can't get their heads around not piling things precariously all over the house... besides that I would cry if my rosewood eames chairs were used for rocket ships and exploded on take off...

saving it for my retirement plan... that and a white couch... unless of course they have kids... dang there is no hope...

A Perfect Gray said...

another wonderful post, Raina. Adler makes me happy. Mid-century is totally sexy. Your boho contempo is doin' good stuff for me. If I found it impossible to live in just one of those three, I might schlep from one to the other and be pretty darn satisfied....

Raina Cox said...

Sherri - "Modern" generally refers to a period when artists shrugged off notions of traditional methods and forms, roughly the late 19th century through the 1950s in Western cultures.

"Contemporary" refers to a non-"traditional" look created within the last 10 - 15 years.

I wrote a brief primer here:

http://tinyurl.com/2dojce8

Teri said...

Hipster Victorian- it is too pertinacious and Contemporary

my favorite and my best said...

what a fab debate. i love all those styles too. not necessarily in my own home either. but if i am being honest, the only way i can truly be happy decor wise would be to have a little bit of everything in my own house.
i can do without plain ol contemporary. add a little french country to it and i like it. traditional with a little of that adler thrown in and im in love. granny chic with a little bit of modern and now you're talkin...
im a little schizo...

erin@designcrisis said...

I definitely prefer a mix of uh... everything. Yeah, I have a problem. So none of these rooms truly appeal to me since they're all too homogeneous. But they're all pretty.

Lately I've been looking at a lot of traditional (like really super traditional) rooms just because I think there's a lot to learn from seeing how a shitload of stuff gets properly balanced throughout space. But I could never ever never live in one of those rooms.

Sally J said...

Genius idea for a post. My designers and I talk about this all the time. I've felt almost schizophrenic at times trying to satisfy a design style for myself. I used to hate mid century, but it's grown on me. I like looking at the all neutral, soft homogeneous rooms, but I'd be a depressed wreck if you made me live in it. But all the differences are what make design really fun! Making sure good design principles are incorporated is important regardless the style.

longlist said...

I adore a minimal, ultra modern interior. All space age with freaky fireplaces and the most beautifully uncomfortable furniture. Would never want to live in one. Also really like colourful, playful rooms, kinda like your Adler Mod, but couldn't handle it 24-7.

nkp said...

I'm a lot schizo. Love a home peppered with a bit of everything, but not for the sake of a particular look. I just happen to gravitate towards all sorts of beautiful, unique, sometimes even ugly, but interesting furnishings and love when they come together to form a happy melange of feel good. How's that for a hippy dippy answer!

Jill said...

Adler and Mario Buatta are both "no's" for me.

Tiina said...

french country mostly. i love it, but i cannot live in all pretty home, need to add some roughness too. so, my solition is to buy a summer cottage and decorate it totally country style. but, i also would love to have a marine & new england type of summer cottage, so i need two cottages. My only solution to this is to buy a summer cottage in sweden (marine) and a white country house in south of france (french style). that would do it!

drollgirl said...

hmmmm. i can appreciate many many types of styles, but living with them (and/or being able to afford them) is a whole other matter.

my boss is REALLY into the modern thing. i find his abode very cold and aloof. i think a lot of modern stuff can feel that way, and i just can't embrace it.

and jonathan adler? i am OVER the adler stuff. i think they are making a killing, but when i see too much of the same too often, i just get sick of it.

karly / design-crisis.com said...

Dark, sexy rooms always appeal to me but I could never imagine living in one for more than a weekend get-away

Also I dislike and would never want to visit any place quaker inspired. Architectural digest actually tried to push this an issue or two ago. I hate them (AD).

dwr said...

I'd agree with most of the posters, I like a bit of everything. I'd be hard pressed to say I can't live with something. I'll draw the line at Adler's pottery.

That being said, I kept going back to that first photo from Lonny. I wanted to love it fully. It took me awhile to figure out what bugged me. Doesn't the crown molding interruptus just sort of ruin the line? In my mind, an uninterrupted expanse of paper would have worked better.

Otherwise, I love that room in ways that might be illegal in some states.

Raina Cox said...

dwr - Agreed about the molding. The homeowners said the room had some crazy ceiling angles going on and that's why they chose to paper it, to make them blend away.

Alexis L., The Studioist said...

I find it so difficult to muster the discipline to stay within one style and I can admit that my design probably suffers a bit for it. That said, I love boho contempo but can't pull it off. I also adore Japanese traditional but 3-4 months of shoji screens, tatamis and trad futons are enough for me at a time, gorgeous as they are. European traditional feels a bit too repressive; French Country reminds me of being trapped in a L'Occitane boutique; minimalism doesn't have the soul I need. Yeah, it's complicated.

Charlotta Ward said...

You know, I like and embrace all of these and don't mind a hint of each style mixed together. Yes, I am eclectic - with a classic Swedish base note, but the one thing I couldn't do is do an entire home in just one style. All of it French Country, Adler Mod or simply Contemporary. To me it feels to safe, too boring and too much. Vive la difference I say!

Merci
xx C