The construction is now at that "what if" stage. What if I took out the two skylights? How much would I save? What if I replaced the numerous recessed lights in the eaves with outdoor wall sconces? Would the savings equal the price of the fixtures? (Imagine how much the contractor is loving this stage.) What if …
What if I fire my architect Joan and finish the job with the contractor? Or what if I fire my contractor? Joan and I can handle the few finishing touches—the roof, floors, windows, etc. What if I walk to the edge of my property, take in the view and catapult myself off Brokeback Mountain. Much better to be Paul Siskin, interior designer, than Paul Siskin, limited budget client.
I don’t want to be like this, but to continue on with life’s luxuries like eating (well), wearing (fashionable) clothes, and sleeping in a bed (and not the sofa in my office), sacrifices have to be made. Whenever I comment to people on the expense of building a house, the stock retort is, "Now you know how your clients feel." Excuse me, but you can hardly put me in the same category as my clients. The master bedroom rug for one of my projects was the same price I paid for my lot. The yearly maintenance on the apartment for another is just short of my construction budget. Yes, I totally know how they feel!
Mr. Blanding’s dream, not mine.
I have been preparing to move to my house in the country for years. In my vast storage vault (Moishe’s) lie many "treasures" acquired over the course of my career. We designers refer to them as decorative accessories; Joan calls them props. There are also many usable pieces of furniture. My clients called them "mistakes", but I prefer "misunderstood items". Whatever you call them, they will look great in my new house. They will give the place an instant Old World look, a handed down through generations look. It won’t look too designed (talk about shooting oneself in the foot). It will be, to use an overworked phrase, eclectic.
Be it ever so humble.
Nell, my assistant and now blog editor, has told me that this post is just one-sided banter, filled with non sequiturs, and doesn’t deal with anything specific. There’s plenty of time for specifics. Even the images are non sequiturs—visual banter. They are what my country is house is not going to look like. Enjoy.