Tuesday, July 10, 2012

OY VEY!! Q&A!! Tuesday's ANSWERS!!!!!

Before I get to the answer part of today's post.....
Let me follow up on my conflict with Target.
For those of you just tuning in.....
check out this post about what happened!!!!!
American Express came through with
flying colors!!!!
I got a full refund.
Don't mess with the Betser, no in deedy!!!!
So, the moral of this story is:
 When some drone tells you there's nothing she can do because it's CORPORATE POLICY .....
Tell her to kiss your @$$!!!!!

Now, on to the answers.....

Once again.....
I'm going to ask.....
questions are ONLY to be submitted on the first Tuesday.
My question file is all messed up, and I can't remember which pictures go with which e-mails.....
If you have a thin skin, it's probably better if you don't send me any questions, because I'm not the most tactful of people, and I have heard through the bloggespher grapevine, that I hurt someones feelings.
I think long and hard on my answers, 
and have no energy left over for diplomacy.....
Just remember....

First up!
Questions from:
Great Room east facing windows.

House Crazy: I couldn't get to a picture of your living room, so you have to link to the actual post with the pictures you want me to see, or email them to me.
Great Room east facing windows.....
you linked back to my own blog, so I couldn't see what the hell you were talking about.
Try it again next month!!!!!
S. beaty asks:
i have a full wall fireplace. im see painted fireplaces all the time. hopefully this picture comes with the email. if not its faux black rock with black z brick type of black adhesive, i guess yad call it. what i would like to know, is yer opinion on painting it a different color....say WHITE.  your opinion would be greatly appreciated. thank ya maam. 

First off.....

How cute are those kids?????????
I think she just wanted an excuse to show off her grand kids......
As to the stone wall,


A good coat of white paint will do wonders.
As to how to paint it, and what to use.....

I found this GREAT TUTORIAL on the web.....

There seems to be a lot of questions lately about painting stone fireplaces.

(I might be exaggerating just a little)
Everyone writing in wants to "fix" the fireplace with paint.
Here's another one:

i have a question. im getting ready to put house on market. i have a fireplace and the stone takes up a whole wall. it is black. my wall colors as of now are pale ice gray. it is a faux stone type material. it is ALL BLACK with some white speckling. what i would like to know is, do you think it would be ok to paint this stone white. this does fill a wall and i would like to make the appearance of the room larger. any suggestions would be helpful. so very happy to find your blog....

My answer.....
Dear, Pipigirl
See above!!!!!!
Julie asks:
Hi Betsy:
I just discovered your blog and love it.  I have become brain dead when it comes to my family room.  I have spent a lot of money (at least for me) on slipcovered furniture from Quatrine - about five years later I replaced the sofa slipcover because it tore and then decided that I wanted two matching arm chairs.  Of course they discontinued the sofa fabric.  Quatrine helped me pick out the chair fabric (a thin pinstripe linen - the sofa is a cotton).  It's not quite the same color, but seems okay.  Went back and forth on several ottomans until a designer recommended I get the same fabric as the chairs (I was stunned because I thought I needed a contrast).  Spent several hundred on some pillows only to not like them at all on the chairs - they were the same rose velvet as the sofa but with a contrasting floral - I thought they were too bright - so I put my other pillows on the chairs.  Please help - my ceilings are 18' in this room.  I'm trying to cozy it up.  Also, I don't like the burlap table.
Thanks much!

Look, folks, it's very simple.....
Betsy's decorating rule number 23:
A room with a dog is a well decorated room.
One of the ways to visually warm up a space is to bring some depth to the walls. I use a lot of wallpaper, but with the stone fireplace, I can see how that would be problematic.
 So how about spending 
and clad the room in wood paneling.....
If that costs too much moolah, what about doing a framed panel effect that is easy and much cheaper.
There are lots of examples all around the web.

Next: you need more stuff on your hutch!!!!

Lots more plates, bowls, cups, pitchers!!!!!
How about moving the fish weather vane to the middle of the mantle, and putting it on a lower stick.....
then add tons of baskets to the top of the hutch.....
If it were my home, I would DEFINITELY have draperies on the windows on either side of the fireplace. 
I can never feel cozy with bare windows.....

In answer to you unasked question about the ottoman fabric matching the chair.....
As to choosing a fabric for the pillows, I can't help you.
That is SO subjective, that I would need to meet with you to help, and
that ain't gonna happen!!!!!
As to the burlap table,
how about replacing it with a cool old painted something???
Go out and find a piece with the shape you like, and then slap a coat of Annie Sloan Paris Grey chalk paint on it????
I notice you seem to have a lot of glass top tables.
They don't help in making a space cozy.
What about finding some more old wood country stuff and painting it up?????
On a plus note.....
Now that's what I call cozy!

Kim Bradley wrote:
Hi Betsy! 
I've recently found your blog and am LOVING it!  It's a real challenge for me to contain myself as I read it (at work, of course)! 

Attached are some pictures of my nasty-#$%^@ kitchen.  I'm close to buying a flame thrower. 

The vinyl began peeling off these shall we call them "budget" cabinets so I went with it and peeled it off all of them.  It was therapeutic to say the least.  Yes, there was wine involved.  They were created from the wood of the MDF forest.  Thought I might paint them (and the bases) a dark chocolate brown but . . . the kitchen faces east and that, coupled with the screen porch, may make it too dark.  Another consideration:  a coat of poly and leave the bases white?  Flamethrower? 

Other components include:  wretched orange toned wood floor, horrid faux granite counters AND backspash (!) cream walls, dark chocolate bay window wall, accent colors dark chocolate, aqua/teal & a bit of orange (to appease the floor, I guess).  Please disregard the disaster over the kitchen sink.  I find it WON'T BURN so I will actually have to remove it with tools!  What to do with this @$@%#? 

Thanking you in advance for your free advice and your terrific blog! 

In the picture the floor looks like it goes nicely with the countertop, 
so at least two things you hate work well together,
 and if you can't afford to change them now,
 than that's a blessing from the
 God of Decorating.....

I would definitely paint the cabinets, both upper and lower, white. It will make a good foil to the countertops and floor.
If you want to bring the focus away from the lack of quality in the cabinets, a good trick is to redirect the eye.....
How about starting a collection of pottery or glass vases and pitchers, or baskets and arrange them along the top of the wall cabinets.
Here's a picture of my Flerida kitchen where I did just that....

Here's a shot of what I did when I first moved into my house and hadn't had time to redo the kitchen.
It looks like I was on drugs, and my drug was McCoy pottery.....
This is an example of when good decorators go bad.....
There IS too much of a good thing.
I knew it was wrong, but I just couldn't stop.
Thank goodness I was able to spread this collection
 throughout the rest of the house.
Betsy, Can't live without your blog! I have been collecting your rooms from magazines for years! Love ya! I am hoping you can work a your magic for me. I have this strange space over my front entry that I just don't know what to do with. We will be replacing the 80's chandelier, ( not sure with what yet) but have no idea what to do with the ledge. I know several houses in my area have this same ledge, and they put baskets of ivy, but it always looks too small, dull and just stupid to tell the truth, for the space. And I would like something a little more sophisticated. During the Christmas season we fill it with our Christmas village, and that works well, but it stands empty and boring the rest of the year. Should I even put something on the ledge? My decor leans towards a traditional Nantucket vibe. I would like to put some kind of window treatment to soften it up, but don't know what kind. I have been stumped for several years! Please help!!! I would truly appreciate it.

Lets take a moment
 to curse all the stupid builders in America 
who think 
this type of a ledge
 is a good idea......
How much you want to bet it was some man who came up with this as a design detail.
who is responsible for keeping the dust of a house at bay, 
OK, now I got that off my chest, 
let me just tell ya that 
I think you should do a collection of weathervanes!!!!!
They have a Nantucket vibe and are country sophisticated.

Mount them on different height wood sticks so there is variation in their placement.

Or you could do a collection of garden obelisks and trellises.....

Mix the two together!!!!
to add some softness to the display, 
I would actually include some baskets of fake ivy!!!!!!!

Next, let's consider the light.
I think what you need is a lantern type look....

These would work with the stuff I want you to put on your ledge!!!!!

Now, to address the most difficult part of this question.....
the window treatment.....
I would be tempted to think outside the box, and do priscilla curtains.....
but most folks would go apoplectic
 at the idea of something so
 frou frou.....
So, how about some simple tab curtains on a wooden pole????
I would have them hang from the top of the window frame to the ledge and make them out of a simple linen material.

I received a lot of questions regarding different issues with windows.
I will be addressing these next month, 
so hold on to your horses, and I'll try to help you guys out then.....

So, I'm completely drained. 
Hope this was enough help, 
'cuz I'M DONE!!!

Latah Gatah


Olive said...

I adore the fact you told that woman to put more stuff in her hutch. More is more:}

Nita Stacy said...

Those high ledges over the front door are sooooo stupid. I have a friend who has that exact thing. She has nothing up there because she doesn't want to climb a ladder to put something up there and she can't figure out what to put up there. I did like your suggestions.

Why oh why oh why do builders think they don't need an architect or great house plans. Seems they come up with a bad idea and they just keep doing it over and over. You see so many weird things like that in newer houses around here. Atrocious!

Anonymous said...

Good stuff, Betsy! Love seeing your readers home, hearing about their dilemmas and hearing your solutions! Well, about hurting folks' feelings, you just can't make everybody happy! And besides, you're a hoot and I guess she doesn't know that! :)
Be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

Amy Chalmers said...

I love the weathervane suggestion! Lots of great advice~and yes those kids were cute~and so was that black dog!

FairfieldHouse said...

I have some McCoy pottery for sale on eBay. Just saying. LOL

Kathleen said...

So if someone had a word in their blog title spelled incorrectly, would you tell her? :)

Unknown said...

Betsy, what good advice! I love the idea of the weather vanes on that ledge. I think the priscilla curtains idea is also very cute. A compromise might be a Swedish type valance. Also, her current light fixture could be rehabbed with a little black paint and some chicken wire! I know- they don't send their questions to me, but if they did... I'd be ready!

sallie said...

Weathervanes. Genius! I have always hated those ledges. Now I sort of want one!

Butterfly 8)(8 Bungalow said...

Oh my gosh, I have never laughed so much reading a blog! You need your own T.V. show.

Shingle Cottage said...

I love reading your OY VEY!
You always make me laugh...
Loving the weather vane and wire cloche idea...very cute kids..i especially love the little girl in the front with the hat x

The White Pear Tree said...

Hi Betsy, I love your gumption and your feistiness! I find that with age, we have less and less time to be beating around the bush and be cute. We tell it like it is and I appreciate that in a person.

I just want to add that I like the shape of the light fixture of the lady with the high ledge, I think she could just give it a coat of oil rubbed bronze spray paint and Bob's your uncle, providing it can easily be taken apart and put back together. It's worth a try. Love the weather vane idea...

Anonymous said...

Ewwww, I just love the Priscilla Curtains suggestions...that is why I love how your design mind works. Also loving the weathervanes up on that (seriously? Ridiculous) ledge. I had white Priscillas once...forgot all about them. I am enjoying your lake house photos very much. I remember them from way back...still love the cozy factor and those exterior stairs/steps! Oh my.

Anonymous said...

You are just tooo funny. That picture of all the McCoy pottery made me pig laugh. I'm praying you never stop writing your blog because it is the highlight of my day.

pam from Louisville said...

You are the queen of decorating. I love your blog.

susan said...

Just happened upon your blog a few months back and now it is on my favorites list. I was intrigued by your priscilla curtain comment. I didn't know you could even buy those anymore but I had a really nice pair back in the 70's when I did the country thing. I still love them though and adore watching those old black and white movies that take place in Connecticut or Maine or somewhere charming .Every window seems to be covered with the charming priscillas with or without drapes on the sides. Like your ideas to fancy up the useless ledge too. It should look beautiful when finished.

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