Trading Spaces
Los Angeles: Irving Street

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Los Angeles: Irving Street

The windows all have very thin white cotton curtains on them. There's a light-coloured area rug underneath the seating area. On the wall between the two windows opposite the fireplace is the framed black and white string art picture -- which, admittedly, looks better framed than I would have expected, but still annoys me because they ignored Jason's stuff to do it. Still, it's better than anything Laurie's come up with lately. In the far corner is the Arco-style floor lamp. There's a small table and a new table lamp beside the end of the sofa. In the dining area, the bar is placed in front of the window. In front of it is a little cluster of four black IKEA Förby stools, with a white one at the centre, acting as a table of sorts. Above the bar is a pendant fixture with the folding drum-shaped paper shade, suspended with a cord that runs messily from the ceiling down to the corner, behind the bar. Somewhere (we never get a distant enough look to tell which wall this is -- I think it must be the wall opposite the bar), they've hung six black and white photos in black frames. But they're hung in two columns of three, with the pictures in the right-hand column hung lower than the ones in the left for a staggered effect. I really dislike the way this looks. The pictures are also too far apart.

It's not a bad room, although it looks sort of like an IKEA catalogue page. Don't care for light blues, baby blues, sky blues all that much on their own; I usually need another colour to be pulled in to make it interesting to me. But not taupe. And not black. The taupe is just wrong, and the black is too severe and heavy. I think the bar is a neat idea, and while I'm not crazy about its design, the HO might get at least as much use out of it as he did his small bistro table. For many homeowners, I'd have to object that Frank's left Jason nowhere to eat -- unless there's a nook in the kitchen, which the kitchen may be just big enough for -- but this guy's never home, so what does he need a dining room for? The way the fireplace is painted is just goofy. But my biggest complaint by far is that not only did they waste time and money (however little) on that stupid string painting, but they hardly used any of Jason's collection of framed work -- framed, people! Not much to do except exert some aesthetic effort to arrange it nicely. No money involved at all for what could have been a huge payoff. And what they did hang was hung badly. Honestly, I would just about kill to have lots more framed photos and pictures in my home, and Jason's were just ignored. Since Jason likes neutral, taupe-y shades, I would have painted the walls that colour, and painted the fireplace the same -- it's nothing special and it's non-functional -- and focused on making a compelling display of Jason's collection. So many HOs have nothing on their walls, or nothing other than trite, mass-produced crap...and Frank makes the guy some string art. The sofa could have worked with a taupe scheme, and the money spent on the sofa could have been spent on more comfortable and durable side chairs, and some better-looking lighting for the bar area. Black would have worked really well with the taupe, too. Still, it's one of Frank's best rooms.

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Trading Spaces

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