February 3, 2015

Downton, DC?

Have you read the piece in the Washington Post about the Congressman whose office has been decorated in the style (if you’re squinting) of Downton Abbey?image

Not really so much Downton Abbey imageas Federalist style, according to what I’ve read. “A gold-colored wall sconce with black candles. A Federal-style bull’s-eye mirror with an eagle perched on top.” But that’s just the outer office.

The inner office has “a drippy crystal chandelier, a table propped up by two eagles, a bust of Abraham Lincoln and massive arrangements of pheasant feathers.” imageStill not sounding like Downton Abbey, especially with that Abraham Lincoln bust.

Apparently, the décor scheme was donated by Annie Brahler of the unfortunately and offensively named firm, Euro Trash. 

Perhaps the congressman is aspiring towards the Red Room in the White House, which seems more comparable to how his offices are described.

image

Most regrettably, the Congressman’s office requested that the reporter, the Post’s Ben Terris, delete the pictures from his camera (!), but luckily, he didn’t capitulate, so we can see the images. Read the whole story (and the comments) here.

42 comments:

  1. It is a good thing he did not have to ask for his money back. Also, That is the worst example of a Federal style bull's eye mirror if it even is one.

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    1. And the framed picture within an empty frame. Too informal for the space.

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  2. Pheasant feathers!?!?! How unpleasant.

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    1. Unless they were collected, uh, curated from the fields in his district.

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  3. Yes, I did read this article and I thought it was a bit of a stretch. And weird. You'd think he could at least just manage to hang the unframed oil painting within the panelling.

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    1. I think the main thing was that they tried to get the reporter to delete his images and then cancelled a meeting after they'd made an agreement.

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  4. Two fun facts: 1) Accepting the free design services is a violation of House ethics rules, and 2) Schock has previously voted to defund PBS.

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    1. I know. House members can't accept gifts or services over $100. Hmmm...

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  5. Pheasant feathers aside, I think it's a lovely room although a bit too much of a stage set but isn't that essentially what it is?

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    1. It is a stage set, but a bit over the top!

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  6. I really didn't understand what the big deal was - red paint? some cheap old junk..sorry...i mean antiques. The real problem seems to be a tacky, out of control 'decorator' and nothing to do with the congressman - a 'decorator' who doesn't know the difference between her styles...or how to name a business.

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    1. The congressman had to approve the decorator. And if her work would have cost more than $100 in fair market value, he's not allowed to accept the gift. The business name is ghastly.

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  7. Good or bad, the designer wins due to all the publicity.

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  8. Well.... I visited this designer's web site and well....., it seems she has a business model that could well have been a secret for those in the know. Buying trips to Europe, shipping carefully selected pieces that meet the needs of the clients.. honestly a picture says a lot and I want to see more pictures!! I would not mind visiting her Warehouse!!!! sounds like a more upscale American Pickers store or a version out of Europe .....Maybe she is hoping for a cable TV show. The adage a time and place for everything....... er, has the representative heard that one while not skiing or surfing or snowboarding or representing his constituents??

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    1. I admit that I didn't look at her website, I found the name off-putting and from what I saw in the pictures, there was nothing to entice me there.

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    2. Meg Meg Meg where is your nose for NEWS?? Are you not interested in the back story? A Simple visit to her web site. Remember these photos were snapped with a cell phone no staging or dramatic lighting perhaps the reporter's "angle" to the story was (not) in the spirit of a(n) (agenda) little person big story . Anyway perhaps she may hear the buzz here t your web site!!

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    3. I am a lazy cow and posted this late last night. Too much other stuff happening!

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  9. It seems that she recycles/repurposes. Isn't this blog a proponent of that activity?


    HFF: Why the name Euro Trash?

    Brahler: One of the qualities I appreciate most in a person is a sense of humor; I always tell my husband that I married him because he makes me laugh. Because the things I import are not yet — or no longer — appreciated, trash in some individuals’ eyes, and because I import only from France, Holland and Belgium, I thought the name was a nice tongue-and-cheek way of beating certain people to the punch. The name kicks the pedigreed antiques that I import and use in my designs off their pedestals. They may be sharing a shelf with something found in a dumpster.

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    1. As I said, i think the name is insulting and derogatory, regardless of how she got it.

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  10. So, maybe all her "services" and "trash, er antiques" didn't cost more than $100. By the looks of it, I can believe that. She IS what I call a decorator but a designer would know style motifs and eras. I'd donate tuition for her to attend the eight week Periods & Styles class I teach at a local community college.

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    1. Annie.. that sounds like a great class!

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  11. He got exactly what he paid for, a professional never discusses clients projects before consulting with them.

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  12. dreadful + hence the name + oh well, to each his own. xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

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  13. Kind of difficult to concentrate on "serving your country" with all those distractions: color, placement of furniture, and accessories. "You can take the boy out of the ............, but you can't take the ........out of the boy."

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  14. Do you know anyone who would hire a designer whose firm is called Euro Trash!? Ha!

    xoxo
    Karena
    The Arts by Karena New Feature

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  15. Hey PigTown... I was unfamiliar with the term "eurotrash" and wondered why it engendered such strong feelings in you. Now that I've looked up the definition...

    "A human sub-phylum characterized by its apparent affluence, worldliness, social affectation and addiction to fashion. Males are characterized by a semi-slovenly appearance (including half-shaven faces), greasy hair, rib-hugging shirts, tight jeans and loafers worn without socks. Women are easily distinguished by anorexia, over-bleached hair, gaudy jewelry, plastic surgery (particularly breast-enlargement) and their attachment to the male species. Both sexes greet each other with “air kisses,” immediately speak of their last trip (often Paris, Rome, Majorca), spend hours at “see-and-be-seen” restaurants and exhibit a world-weariness and pained sense of irony. "

    I still am confused at why you find this so offensive. (I suppose they could have shortened the definition to "Cast members of reality TV shows.")

    Care to share?

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    1. Girl, this blog needs you on a regular basis. Come back often.

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    2. That is not the definition I found on line. Granted it is a strange name. I do not consider as trash the items which I purchase at tag sales. There must be another more suitable term for these vintage items .

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    3. The definition I know is sort of international white trash. Not too flattering.

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  16. I'm wondering if Congressman Schock was more inspired by the Black Lodge of Twin Peaks fame than the more respectable Downton Abbey.

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  17. I read the article differently. To me it seemed like a good example of why reasonable people would be reluctant to go into politics. I don't like "gotcha" journalism - the only point of the story was to make the congressman look tasteless and incompetent. (I have to admit to disliking both the name of the decorator's company and the decor though!)






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    1. I think that one of the issues is that they tried to make him delete the pictures, and that the congressman cancelled their agreement. A little bit of spite.

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