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Designer Monthly Preview

The woman who helped usher the interior design industry into full flower in the United States was prolific in putting out ideas that will help freshen up today's interior design business. Look at our latest Designer Monthly, Interior Design: Look Forward by Looking Back to Dorothy Draper.

Did you ever have a problem designing small spaces?  Take a look at how top interior designers solved this common problem in our latest Designer Monthly, How to Design Small Spaces at the Kips Bay Decorator Show House.






Electricity Through The Roof

I have ---- drumroll --- an estimate from the electrician. 

If I had kids, I could just about put them through college for the price of the electrical work I want done. Or even for the price of some of the electrical work I want done. Or even for just doing one little part of it, like the kitchen. 

The thing that really sends the estimate through the roof is the switch from a fuse box to circuit breakers. Here’s a photo of the decrepit fuses:

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Hiring A Professional

So, great. I now have a plan for the electrical problem, and just have to wait for the guy to send me the estimate.  

Meanwhile, my friend Seddy came by for lunch and mentioned, more than once, that her sister is starting an interior design business. I mean, she mentioned it enough that I realized it was like when someone offers you a breath mint—you should always accept, even if you don’t want a breath mint right then, because the person may be trying to tell you something.  

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Mapping The Electric

The electrician showed up. He was a nice guy.

He’s worked in my building, in other apartments, so he knew what was what, and he was reassuringly calm about the whole thing, telling me not to worry, except about that mess by the phones, which he was careful not to step too near, treating it kind of the way you would a dead skunk in the front hall.

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Plug In

Okay, so the painting thing was a total disaster.

But before I can do anything about the paint, what I really have to attend is the electrical problem, which I should have taken care before painting anyway.

I know, this may not seem a little bit like calling a veterinarian when your sink is stopped up, but if you knew about the electrical situation here you’d know this makes more sense than calling, for example, a painter. Or a decorator.

The thing is, my apartment is in a building that was built in 1924. And the wiring hasn’t been updated since---or, no, that’s an exaggeration. And it’s worse than that. The wiring has been updated, several times, by several different people, each apparently less competent than the last. There are wires encased in metal tubes running along the baseboards, not neatly buried in the wall the way a person would like. There are boxes sticking out for the outlets, like this:

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We put the “Pain” back in “Paint”

Okay, so I returned to the apartment after the painting extravaganza, and voila—clearly it had been kidnapped for a guest appearance on “Miami Vice.” Or it was taken over by the Ladies’ Decorating Society and Drum Corp of Boca Raton.  And I’ve never even been to Florida. I have nothing against Florida. I’m sure it’s great. 

Boca Isles

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