Sunday, June 21, 2009

Cote de Texas - The Sad State of Shelter Mags

My dear online bud Joni over at Cote de Texas has posted today about her disappointment at the decline in quality of our precious few remaining shelter mags siting a recent article about the design shown above and giving an in depth analysis of just why it is so wrong.

She features this home which made a splash in the blogosphere not too long ago and was touted by some as being a stellar example of eclectic design. I had the same reaction as Joni did - HUH??? What the hell is that! When we have seen from many of the blogs posting original work that there is good design out there that should be featured why is this stuff shown front and center?

This is a subject I have written about in the past to the horror of faithful Domino readers . Read here.

I also wrote about this article which to me seemed forced and unworthy. Read here

Why should we have to skim through three or four sub par articles showing just plain bad design to see one or two worthy of publishing. For me I feel that we are being spoon fed nasty caustic medicine that we are supposed to believe is delicious. The effort that goes into trying to convince readers that these projects are good design could be better put to use actually scouting great projects. I am sure that in todays market there are amazing politics that go on behind the scenes and the remaining publications are under great pressure to tow the line, stay on budget, and sell covers but does it really have to happen at the expense of the integrity of the publication?

Here is the most recent example in my humble opinion of a major mag trying to force feed us dog food and call it caviar.

I have seen this abomination everywhere. What the heck is up with this room? Coordinating wallpaper and headboard - okay we're off to a decent start although in my opinion the fabric is a very poor choice for the shape of the tufted headboard. Then we throw in the requisite gourd lamp - I can't wait until this overused trend is over! A cheap table sits next to the bed in too small a scale for the room and it is crammed up against what looks like a full sized day bed along the window wall which also looks out of proportion. Then we have the bedding - here is where I say what the heck are you trying to feed me? There is no amount of posturizing that is going to convince me that this is an intelligent, strategic design decision that was made to enhance the aesthetic of this room. This is grandmas left over linens thrown on a bed without any regard to their effect on the entire space. Is the pretty girl lounging on top of them supposed to hide the fact that it is hideous? Then you have the pillows on the day bed. Another random throw in that has virtually no connection to what's going on in the room. And what is the motivation behind the thrift store painting? Random - unintelligent & insulting to the level of sophistication of the reader.

I am amazed that this photo has been plastered all over the blogosphere as Joni was with the other aforementioned rooms. We need to be smarter than that people. We should not fall for every piece of bait that is thrown to us. I applaud Joni's courage at stating the obvious as I know from prior experience that she will elicit some backlash. More of us should be as honest.


ABK Couture said...

With you on this one. I bought Domino one time, never again. I'm glad to know I'm not crazy for not liking it!

cotedetexas said...

Oh God - remember the domino story you did????? omg!!! haha!!!

thanks for having my back here.

did you notice that the wallpaper is the reverse of the headboard? the way the picture is taken it looks like one giant mattress room. how much did you pay for that magazine - ??? I just don't' get the - lets pick out things that do really go together or blend or look like good together kind of decorating.

Thanks Girl!!!! I love ya!

Linda Merrill said...

I admit that I didn't shed a tear over the loss of Domino. I was never inspired (although as Joni says, inspiration is harder to find these days). Every issue seemed to be the same as the last. I guess I just thought I was too old for it- it was the Seventeen Magazine of the dec world.

Willow Decor said...

You are so funny! I absolutely agree. Joni's post was great, as was yours!! I think it is just ridiculous! The room is a mess!
Good taste seems hard to find on the pages of these magazines!

Renae Moore said...

It's amazing what some think is good design. This is indeed hideous...

The Stylish House said...

Hi Jackie,
This is my first visit to your site. I laughed when I saw these rooms and what you wrote about them! In my humble opinion many magazines are going under, because there is such fantastic design shown on blogs and websites. I have my favorites I like to curl up with away from my computer that I would hate to disappear. Cathy

Julia said...

Great post. It looks like a hideous padded cell. Horrific. I bought Domino once myself, never again.

Unknown said...

It may be just that I'm a fan and advocate for modern design. But the cover issue of Gwyneth in the Home and Garden magazine is actually captivating for me.


Michelle said...

The more I know about who and how people get featured, the more I realize, it's not new great talent, or even teh same great's the photographers they use over and over again, and the old boys club of the top 100 that get featured over and over.

Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule, but I'm bored of seeing the same designers over and over again.

Just me.

You need to get over to the skirted roundtable as a guest Jackie!!! I love the way you just spill it :)

Anonymous said...

I don't have any idea how I was fortunate enough to find yo tonight But you made my day... my week... my month! Thank you! Right on target!

Anonymous said...

Hello! It's not what you know it's who you know! Domino's first cover featured a designer and her "shop"
(I won't mention names.)...I went to the shop based on their rave reviews...There was no shop! It was a 12x12 glorified office with price tags? Friends of friends get published.