02 July 2007

Dilemmas in Homerentership

Even though we've lived in our apartment for exactly two months now, we still haven't finished the final touches on it. Still no seating in the living room other than a sprawling futon, still no bedside tables, still no decorative bookshelf from a company we shall call Clientell, still no free carpet that turned out to be an antique Persian carpet worth thousands and thousands of dollars so our friends aren't giving it to us after all. One can quite understand their change of heart.

In France, to decorate your living space with an exotic touch means Moroccan. Former colony, etc. So accordingly, we went out in search of some poufs, or ottomans (ottomen? If you search too long, has it become an ottomania?) and possibly some Moroccan lamps. I've had a secret hankering for a silver teapot in which to make sweet mint tea and for a pyramidical tagine to make proper couscous. (Note to self: do not confuse the two.)

Well, if you want to make a quick buck, it appears the Moroccan import business is the way to go. Damn, those things were expensive. They don't look difficult to make, when you really get down to it, and I was asking one vendor about the inside stuffing, seemingly a stiff cotton or wool batting. His shop makes poufs to order, he quickly volunteered, and so we browsed around the authentic handwoven wool tapestries to pick a pattern.

Frenchy picked out a frighteningly ugly (sorry, honey, but it's true) one, and for the sake of finally having something to sit on I agreed, and then came the delicate moment of finding how much this would set us back. Well, the fabric alone would cost $750, plus the cost of making the pouf which would be another $250! We found the front door of the shop pretty quickly! Dilemma part one. I think I can manage pretty well on my own, as well as do some decorative embroidery.

Now I get to browse the famous fabric stores where the Project Runway people shop!

But back to the dilemma part two--ever since the Clientell deal fell through, we still don't have bedside tables. A friend of ours is moving back to France in August, and she agreed to sell us her tables cheaply. Now, as much as I'll really hate to see her go, I really want those tables!

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