Wednesday, October 14, 2015


In a fix?
Do you watch those HGTV shows?
You know the ones I'm talking about.
My addiction is programs where folks
look at properties before making their
purchase decision. Part of me adores
the thrill of the hunt. However I also
love watching people "flip" properties -
creating beauty from mediocrity. The
question is will they love it or list it?
Now that our home restoration is just
about complete I vicariously view the
dirt, dust, and noise that goes with any
transformation sans any responsibility!

East or west home is best
One of my favorite blogs is entitled
"Old House Dreams" Several times
a week it's author publishes listings
of historic homes across the country
for sale. What's fascinating is how
regional the local approach to interior
design is. Out east coast most people
tend to stick to the local rules. Thus
in New England "Early Americana"
rules whereas in the Mid Atlantic to
down south it's "Colonial" with lots
of swags and jabots. Sadly, as one
moves west "local color" disappears.

Dead heads
Here in Montana it should be easy to
find inspiration. One only has to look
outside to see nature in all it's glory.
Yet said view is rarely akin to what
one experiences within. You might
assume our aesthetic is as elegant as
the mega mountain homes featured
in Architectural Digest or Elle Decor.
Yet few locals fill their homes with
fabulous concoctions of river rock
or rough hewn logs a la Roy Rogers.
The truth is most stuff them full with
mummified mounts and microfiber.

Basic instinct
While this cowboy abhors the idea of
living ensconced within an homage to
the lonesome trail, at least said western
exposure is unique. However it seems
that few born and bred Montanans are
willing to invest in anything except a
rather dated approach to interior decor.
Practical seems to be the way of this
west. Therefore one can sum up their
homes with several key elements. Lots
of vinyl flooring, golden oak, and last
but not least formica. Think trailer park
with a liberal dash of taxedermy.
Rise above it
OK. I'll admit it. I'm a snob. Of course
there are exceptions to said decorative
norms. Many of our friends reside in
quite lovely abodes. However when I
regularly peruse the real estate listings
all that I see is an amazing array of the
most mundane interiors imaginable.
Why don't they dip their cowboy boots
into the twenty first century? Wouldn't
it be better to live in an interior that
indicated that it's residents actually had
some sort of personality?! If one's home
is their castle, why live in the dungeon?

Do you copy?
Life on the range is tough. Could
that explain this rather practical
approach to decorating? Excuses
aside, one has only to surf the
web, read a magazine, or watch
television to find inspiration. As
local resources are limited, I'm
still confident anyone can cobble
together an elegant abode from
our merchants down Main Street.
That plus Billings and Great Falls
prove there's no excuse for bad
taste nor aesthetic laziness.

Man overboard
Why do so many living in man caves?
Painting one's walls in a fabulous tone
versus a swath of mediocrity costs no
more. Rearranging a room to suit the
architecture rather than that big screen
TV works wonders. And sending all
of that dead stuff to the basement or
garage is if nothing else civilized. But
most important, please get rid of all of
those silly inspirational sayings. I truly
don't appreciate being told how to live
via some creepy vinyl wall cling. Nor
do I want to sit on a sea of Naugahyde.

Home sweet home
Creating the ultimate cocoon makes us
all feel special. Given we reside in a
climate where one must spend most of
the year indoors - why not live it up?
That requires taking everything up a
notch or two. Go for the unexpected.
Create an environment that's totally
YOU. Take some risks, push that
envelope, and simply have some fun!
Rather than live vicariously via the
boob tube - live the life you've always
wanted to live AT HOME. Come on...
I know you can do it! DECORATE!