Room Redux can be used in several ways: as an introduction to basic design concepts, as a problem solver, and as a workbook. The book starts off with the premise that most rooms are not perfect to begin with, and if you're going to decorate or redecorate a room you'll have to make the most of its shortcomings.
Questionnaires help you assess the strengths and weaknesses of each room and how and where to begin. Authors Joann Eckstut and Sheran James provide workable solutions for problem areas common to many homes. Are the windows in your living room too low? Hang the curtain valance higher or mount a shelf above the window and place sculptures or pictures above it. Want to spruce up some boring built-in bookcases? Add new face moldings, baseboards, and cornices, or hang pictures along the edges.
The authors' solutions are often refreshingly quick fixes that don't require a major amount of remodeling--just a bit of time and ingenuity. Suggested projects are marked "quick-fix," "moderate," or "major" so that decorators can know ahead of time what they're getting into.
The book contains pockets for collecting fabric swatches, pictures, and article clippings. And if you've ever moved a roomful of furniture only to discover its new layout doesn't work, you'll be inspired to use the enclosed graph paper and to-scale punch-out furniture to preplan your room to your liking. Color drawings present a variety of fabrics and furniture styles, and handy charts provide tips on lighting placement and dimensions for spaces between furniture. Infinitely practical, Room Redux picks up where the coffee-table decorator books fall short. --Kris Law
From Library Journal
A number of books published recently, including Home Decorating for Dummies and Sharon Hanby-Roby's My Name Isn't Martha, but I Can Decorate My Home (whose new book is reviewed below), provide amateur decorators with advice on decorating their homes. Eckstut's book is the best to come out combining theory, solutions, and how-to advice. Divided into chapters that discuss color, fabrics, furniture, lighting, window treatments, walls, and flooring, this book provides detailed information about the choices available. The best feature is the focus on evaluating one's own style and living spaces. The sources listed give a variety of choices, with toll-free numbers and web sites. Although this book is highly recommended for public libraries, it is still a workbook (with cutouts of furniture to use on floorplans), so the pages will need to be protected. Pretty's book gives examples of floorplans for each room of the house, with suggestions on how to create a particular look. Purchase where interior decorating is popular.
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