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Room Redux: The Home Decorating Workbook Spiral-bound – July 1, 1999


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Product Details

  • Spiral-bound: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books (July 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0811817903
  • ISBN-13: 978-0811817905
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 9.8 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #383,857 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

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.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

37 of 37 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 9, 2003
Format: Spiral-bound
No, there are no photos, just sketches. But I have plenty of decorating books with pretty pictures. This one teaches how to decorate in a way that surpasses any other book I own. Each chapter starts with questions about the topic of the chapter and what you feel you want to do with your room in response to that question. By the end of the chapter, you can answer the questions for yourself.
For example, the chapter on color has ten questions: 1) Are you worried about keeeping colors consistent from one room to the next, 2) Are you using color to adjust the personality of your room, 3) Do you want just white, 4) Are you trying to revise the look of the colors of your room wothout overhauling your entire scheme, 5) Are you trying to duplicate a color you fell in love with on vaction 6) Is the quality of the light getting in the way of you color choices 7) Are you wondering whether you should paint the same color over everything on your walls, including the moulding, 8) Are you looking to color to make your room feel larger, smaller, taller, shorter, or wider, 9) Are you nervous about using a wild color you find yourself attracted to, and 10) Do you like the color you chose for your wall, but find its effect somewhat bland.
Determining the answers to these questions is well presented in the text. Topics in the color chapter include how light in your part of the world(northern hemishpere, though it would be easy to adapt to the southern hemisphere) affects color, depending on which window it's coming in through and the season. How changing light bulbs can change the effect of the color. How colors interact with each other and why you should be careful about what background you place those carpet squares against when trying them out.
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30 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Kristen on January 8, 2001
Format: Spiral-bound
The problem with all those Other decorating books is that they're all glitz and no brain...or all money and no real world budget...or all fancy-shmanzy photos and no explanations, helpful pointers, etc. You get the picture. This book, on the other hand, EXPLAINS things (what a concept). For example, I was delighted to find a chart listing different kinds of wood, what they're typically used for, how well they take staining, etc. Another list describes fabrics, and how formal/informal they are. Wonderful for the clueless and dirt-poor freshly college-graduated couple.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By perlh1973@earthlink.net on September 3, 1999
Format: Spiral-bound
The book does a terrific job of organizing home decorating into understandable platforms. It's surprising how fresh the perspectives are. And how complete the survey. So many previous books my wife and I have bought go way over our head (and budget). This book gave us solid ideas we can use that will make a real difference in the look and feel of our home.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 24, 1999
Format: Spiral-bound
I've been trying to find a book that makes decorating easy. Finally, I've found it. Room Redux is written clearly and is organized in an easy to use fashion. Chapters are arranged well and the suggestions aren't self-serving; they actually help. Even though there are no photos, the illustrations help guide the reader through room makeovers.
A great read.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 26, 2002
Format: Spiral-bound
Room Redux is by far the best decorating book out on the market today. There is an incredible amount of information in this book, but it is presented in an abundantly clear and easy-to-access format. To me, it's like the Joy of Cooking for home design--for anything you need help with, an answer resides within. You also get the feeling that the authors are good friends talking you through each step, unlike so many dry and boring decorating books out there. Lastly, there are wonderful features to this book like pockets for paint chips and fabric swatches and cut-out furniture pieces for floor plans. If you're going to buy one decorating book, this is the one to buy. And, believe me, I know--I've read just about every book out there!
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 16, 2000
Format: Spiral-bound
This book is what interior designers (and art majors)learn in college textbooks. Rhythm, balance, harmony, scale, colors (primary, etc.) This book is definitely not for the novice, unless really serious about decorating. The floor plan exercise is good, but work. The templates & graph paper are a great addition, as you don't need to purchase extra materials. The chapter on fabrics is technical, explaining all the different types of fibers, yet some of the advice given on mixing and matching fabrics leaves one confused. (I liked Fabrique Technique, a book on coordinating fabrics) The chapter on furniture asks questions that need to be answered by the reader because not every salesperson asks the right questions to a potential customer. The in depth information contained is quite extensive, and is all you would ever need to be a savvy consumer. The chpater on lighting has a great placement chart that is quite useful. Again, another information packed chapter on windows, but not for the novice. This is definitely a book you'll refer to time & time again for many years.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 31, 2000
Format: Spiral-bound
my wife and i finally found a book that has helped us over our biggest obstacle: the inability to make a design decision. and the authors don't just dictate their own decision--they helped us to find our own. the quizzes were especially helpful. they helped us express what it was we were trying to accomplish, and then we could talk about it and act on it.
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