Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Questions, Questions

I've had some questions submitted to me through the comments on my blog, and not to be one to ignore an opportunity to spout off and act like a know it all, I will attempt to answer them. Due to a certain degree of favoritism, I will first answer Amy of Maison Decore. She wrote:
 "Wow that was a crapload of work!! They must be very $$$$ chairs now!! Question: you skipped right over the details of adding the flange trim on the uppers. Did you make a strip folded in half (like an empty welting case) for the flange? and why did you decide to do a flange trim on the top and not welting as you did on the bottom? They look great, and you are the queen of execution!"
    Yes, I know, I copied the whole email, well, it was so flattering I couldn't help myself. Now, to answer her question, I did a flange rather than a welt, for the simple reason that I thought it was COOL!! Yes I did make a strip, folded in half like an empty welting case, for the flange.....I actually have pictures of it!!!!.

I had written almost this whole question and answer post, and the blog spot program had some sort of a hissy fit and started shimmying. So I saved my work and closed it out, and when I reopened it ALMOST ALL OF MY WRITING WAS LOST!!!!!!!!!!! I just want you guys to know that it was really funny and pithy, but now I feel PISSY, and will just answer the damn questions without my usual flair. (Unless it comes back to me and flows from my brain into the keyboard.)
Anyway, to continue................
Cut the fabric into strips.......................

Fold the strips in half and iron them, so that the fold keeps its shape when you sew them to the side box strip..............

Here's how they look attached to the slipcover.................

Next question was from Janet at The Empty Nest
She wrote:
"OMGoodness....why are you not using Annie Sloan Chalk Paint...no sanding, priming...just open the can and let it fly!"

  WELL, Kris and I didn't know about it when we started working on the chairs. I hadn't met Amy yet, so she wasn't in my life to share all her pearls of wisdom. We will definitely try it when I come back up to Massachusetts (HA!!! I am in Florida!!!). There is an antique secretary that we need to refurbish and get rid of (I mean sell).

 I saved the next question for last 'cuz it's the hardest to answer. It's from Amy R. She asks...
 "I follow your blog, so I popped over here to ask you a question. Yes I know you do not write people back to answer questions, but I thought if you ran out of ideas to write about, maybe you could touch on this subject for your blog. I know – your welcome. Anyway, I was not born with a complete decorating gene. Therefore, I have tried in the past to hire a designer. I’ve done it three times and nobody gets me. Before I hire them I ask what type of taste they have, and they say they have no specific taste, they conform to mine. I love the cottagey feel of your home, love that you repurpose, and love that everything does not match. How can I find a designer that’s as talented and creative as Betsy Speert? (Always good to add praise) What questions do I ask, where do you look for one? By the way, I live in the Boston area too – do you have any decorating friends?"
  Again, I posted the whole question because I love flattery almost as much as I like to show off. Anyway, to answer this....
I would never take a designer at his or her word when they say they have no specific taste. That's like saying I don't have any strong feelings about lima beans. I flatter myself that I can do lots of different styles, but I always bring pieces of my aesthetic to the job. To find a designer you like, go to decorator showhouses and look for rooms that appeal to you. Look at local design magazines. Most importantly, interview the designers and look at their portfolios. If they don't have one, ask if it would be possible to go to see any of the rooms they have designed. It's also always good to get references. You should always discuss the budget and how they charge. I never kept that secret from my clients. As a matter of fact, I wrote in the contract exactly how I charged and marked up. This is a business arrangement and it's important that everything is clear. I never went in for oral agreements, everything was in writing.
As for recommending a Boston designer, I only know the old established ones, and your budget would have to be REALLY healthy. I hope this was helpful, but finding a designer is kind of like blind dating. Unless you go see the goods, you have no idea what you're getting.


Janet Metzger, Artist said...

Hello Betsy,

Ha! Never thought I woud score a mention on your blog. I feel like a mini celebrity ;-> Is the flattery working?????

I think you will like the Annie Sloan paint..very fun to work with so much fun mixing her beautiful, clean colors. No matter what colors I mix together, they never get muddy. I love that.

You did a wonderful job on those chairs.

Happy Holidays to you Betsy!

The Empty Nest

Connie @ Connie Nikiforoff Designs said...

I haven't tried Annie Sloan paint yet either...probably mostly cuz I have to order it online. We are miles from anyone who carries it out here in the "northern outpost" of North Dakota. Merry Christmas!

Amy said...

Thanks Betsy,
Can't believe I never thought about the whole decorator showhouses route! Thanks for answering!

Anonymous said...

Amy Rosenblatt should use Amy from Maison Decor!
I have a question: Why does everyone in Florida have to try and rub it in?
I live in Maine, and love all the seasons especially the winters! (the snowbirds are gone!)
I enjoy your candor
Amy's friend Sue

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