The mirage of decorating between commercials


IO-EarleyThe American public is showing no signs of abandoning its passion for the immediate gratification of HGTV decorating. While it has engendered a passion for the home, this condensed variety of decorating has instilled the idea that an inspiration can grow into reality between commercial breaks.

These are expectations that no mere mortal interior designer can live up to without an entire staff, crew and cameras on hand.

We are being duped into believing that a room can transform in 30 minutes with no sweat and no budget. Unless your designer is adorned in glitter and has a pixie countenance and wand, expect the reality version of the decorating shows.

In a one-hour show, we witness homely rooms that are mystically transformed into beautifully decorated spaces on budgets that would fit in a piggy bank. If you contact a decorator and expect the same metamorphosis in your home, it is very likely that you will be disappointed.

Have you ever considered how this cable TV magic can happen week after week? The answer is quite simple: labor and promotional discounts. Now cut to the real world, where your budget not only has to cover materials, furniture and accessories, but also your decorator, your carpenter, your interior painter, your drapery fabricator, your installer, etc. and reality can bring the curtain down on your naivety.

Time warp is another major symptom of too much HGTV.

A client who holds dear the belief that a space can be developed in an hour, a week or even a month is headed for the same frustration and disappointment as the one who expects to do it “on a dime.” Quite simply explained, good design takes time.

A beautiful space that appears so effortless on the flat screen is actually the product of hours of communication and research in real life. Once decisions have been made, furnishings and fabrics must be ordered. Custom or special-order furniture can take as long as 12 weeks for completion. Custom draperies can take six to eight weeks before installation. In the meantime, there are other workers who must be scheduled, including painters, installers and on and on.

Keep in mind that your decorator has the ability to visualize the completed project and veering from the prescribed design plan could lead to a less than desirable outcome

HGTV is great for quick ideas and inspirations, but real life demands realistic expectations. When those are in place and you have connected with a professional who has earned your trust, step back and then let your decorator work real magic.

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