Saturday, January 30, 2010

Greenhouse Effect

Our concept of gardening used to border on the eccentric, now it seems to reside there. Currently our winter garden rather resembles a witch’s pea patch or an overgrown battlefield full of feuding wizards, complete with burnt patches of turf and the odd smell of sulfur in the air (but that is a story for another day AND A STORY THAT NOBODY BELIEVES when we tell it…All we will say at this point is that it involved our neighbor, a broomstick and a pack of flying rats. We promise you, dear readers we are not exaggerating.)

Recently it came to our attention that the plants in our container garden have passed through the veil of life and now reside in the afterworld…OK, there is not a nice way to say it - our plants are just FREAKING DEAD. There was a series of unfortunate mishaps that led up to this but we will not bore you with yet another peculiar and only somewhat plausible tale. Let’s just say that not even the invaluable gardening book “BOTANICAL NECROMANCY IN THREE EASY SPELLS” made much of a difference (besides growing moss on our eyebrows, that is…)

Now, our barberry shrubs were quite lovely when they were alive with their seemingly graceful boughs and delicately dappled leaves. In death they have taken on an entirely different form, transforming into a gnarled cluster of branches dripping with sinister thorns. We never spent much time pruning these plants (much like how Splendor does not spend much time properly bushing her hair…) so their misshapen twigs have twisted into a spooky and impenetrable hedge. Instead of just heading to the nursery and procuring some new shrubs we decide to decorate the skeletal remains of the old ones by fastening chandelier crystals among their thorny bows. Much to our amusement this caused BLINDING SHAFTS OF LIGHT to shoot from our porch, frightening the postman and confusing the crows. We did not stop there, dear ones. Our garden (HA!) now boasts a collection of mirrors placed at odd angled designed to further perplex and bewilder the casual bystander and last but not least a bird’s nest spun of metal strands, a set of silver filigree eggs and a pair of brass songbirds…

Whatever apocalypse occurred to our shrubs has involved the undergrowth as well. The winter pansies have committed mass suicide and the stone crop and creeping jenny appear to have been carried off by pixies. Instead of filling the gaping holes with new and lively plants we instead packed them with ceramic orbs, crystal facets and decorative rocks. There is a resident squirrel here that likes to profusely rub a certain green orb much like a crystal ball. Instead of sharing what dire portents and omens he has witnessed, he prefers to sit on our railing and scratch his armpits for hours on end. (But then again everyone knows that clairvoyant squirrels can be troublesome…)

As a final touch we placed our bronze Buddha statue front and center in one of the pots. This stately statue previously resided in our bedroom, but was recently replaced with a shrine of skulls sprawled upon a wrought iron candelabra. Buddha seems much more content presiding over the lifeless yet lavish garden rather than the shenanigans that tend to take place in the master chamber (although we must say the skulls seems to enjoy it…hmm…)

Since it seems we will be lacking in greenery for the foreseeable future, we have gathered together a selection of opulent olives, murky mosses and evil emeralds…enjoy!

Now when the day goes to sleep and the full moon looks
And the night is so black that the darkness cooks
And you come creeping around, making me do things I don't want to do

(The Green Manalishi (with The Two-Pronged Crown) by Judas Priest)

Monday, January 18, 2010

It's a Small World


*SPOILER WARNING* this post may contain references to how bodily functions and interior decoration can be combined to the delight and entertainment of the entire family….

Now having no children of our own (unless you count the spawn of demons that we have no doubt created by simply existing…) we see no reason at all to act our age…we still proudly enjoy fairy tale books, running in the halls and playing with toys. OK. Splendor does, Seraph is completely normal and acts like an adult all of the time…hmmm…really? But seriously, we will be the first to admit that we DID NOT need to buy another miniature ceramic furniture set (including a sofa, two side chairs with an ottoman and a grand piano with a removable lid.) As to what we are planning to do with the set we have no idea whatsoever. Perhaps another elaborate yet rustic fairy parlor decorated with tiny skeletons, dead spiders or a family of taxidermy frogs. We have noticed other people use their cabinet space to store more useful things such as china, books or linens while we create spooky haunted dollhouses that would give Edgar Allan Poe the creeps (if he were ever to stop by and visit our collection of ravens, that is…)

Everyone knows that dolls completely suck and do not deserve furniture of their own, but pet sized furniture is completely acceptable. The only drawback is convincing the little darlings that sleeping in a Tony Duquette-esque roomscape is not a threat to their own design esthetics. If we were to have ever made a bed like for our beloved cat Kitche she would have looked at it with amusement and distain and then set it on fire with her eyes…She much preferred to sleep on the most inconvenient thing at hand (such as our heads) or the most expensive object in the room that DID NOT BELONG TO HER.

Did we ever tell you the story about the time when we decided to treat ourselves and have one of our heirloom chairs reupholstered? We thought not…It seems that somewhere during our travels we ran across a lovely scrap of velvet just the size needed for our chair. Now this velvet was the lovely shade of a shimmering tiger running through a forest in the golden sunlight… (perhaps the homemade shrimp chow mein that we had for dinner has given us an “overactive imagination” again…we HOPE that those were shitake mushrooms in the cupboard…damn…)

Anyways, arrangements were made and before long our much loved chair was returned to us. At this time we must point out that Kitche used an elaborate language comprised of various bodily functions to portray her displeasures with us. We are still not sure what we did that day to upset her tender sensibilities but within a half an hour of the chair being delivered there was a gigantic projectile vomit stain directly on the seat and dribbling down the front leg. Now the guys at the upholstery cleaners had a good laugh at our expense and assured us that it would be “as good as new”. It seems they DID NOT UNDERSTAND THE SUBTLE NUANCES OF EXPENSIVE VELVET, which after cleaning turned from the lovely color of tawny tiger fur to a flat and lifeless shade of stale graham crackers. We swear after that day Kitche never again gave that chair another look and moved on to bigger and better things that we WILL NOT EVEN BEGIN TO DESCRIBE. Needless to say Kitche ran our lives with an iron claw and we miss her more than we can even put into words…

The moral to this story surely DOES NOT EXIST, so please feel free to make up your own, dear readers. (And do tell us of your own animal / interior ordeals…)

Our Beloved Kitche...

I shall never forget you, the best
of all there is, I lick your cold lips,
I embrace your coffin as I sigh in woe.

(“Natassja in Eternal Sleep” by Darkthrone)

Friday, January 8, 2010

Damask of Destruction

Perhaps, dear readers, it has finally come time to change our name to Velvet of Viciousness or perhaps Flannel of Fury (yes, we know that we hail from Seattle so therefore there will be no jokes about GINGHAM OF GRUNGE...) We are not sure if it is just this time of year but there are certain things that have been getting on our nerves as of late. It appears that instead of a shiny new kitten we have a litter of pet peeves instead…

Has design related decorum not to mention the simple of rules size and proportion gone out the window? (We promise you that in this day and age that window would have a hideous unlined drapery treatment in the becoming shade of rancid oatmeal.) Case in point, we simply cannot find sheets that fit. We could understand this phenomenon if we had a sack made of ticking that we occasionally stuffed with hay but our mattress is simply not that old! We distinctly remember purchasing it for an exorbitant amount of money not more than four years ago. Did we miss the meeting when it was decided on to add SIX MORE FREAKING INCHES to the depth of a fitted sheet???

To rectify this problem we were forced to buy a creepy mattress pad that resembles a gigantic waffle straight off the menu of the DENNY’S IN HELL. This fluffy monstrosity caused our formerly imposing (and quite smutty) black tufted headboard to visually sink half a foot. Now instead of resembling a set from a vintage porno movie with an Arabian Nights fetish our bed now appears to be a malevolent black cloud. (Ok, and it STILL kind of looks like a set from a porno movie…)

The design and scale of dishes is another thing that is getting preposterous. It seems that the diameter of a dinner plate is now somewhere between a garbage can lid and a hula hoop. Do not even get us started on coffee cups the size of cereal bowls and cereal bowls the size of sinks. Now we have our fair share of vintage china to make a comparison to. Our heirloom 1950’s set is quite svelte but still functional, while our Victorian china is nearly miniature in scale with handles as fragile as humming bird bones or wisps of smoke. At this point it is only right that we confess to one slight inconstancy. There is absolutely nothing wrong with a martini glass the size of a small pond that you can dangle your toes in between sips. (And just think - if you get too tipsy and fall in you can always use the olive as a floatation device...we have done that more times than we can count…damn)

We have decided to edit out the part of this post where we contemplate the silliness of slipcovers. Ok, maybe not… Now if there was ever a piece of furniture that needed to put on a bit more clothing it would be our sofa. We have always considered it rather vampy, clad in black and constantly on the prowl for someone to seduce into its velvety embrace. Although we have caught it on many occasions smoking cigarettes and swearing at the cat, we do not have the heart to punish it by making it wear a uniform (a baggy shapeless uniform at that…HA!) Now comparing slipcovers to a lovely ensemble of body bags awaiting the arrival of the coroners van is pushing the point JUST A LITTLE TOO FAR.

Perhaps we just need, quite literally, a change of scenery. We would be perfectly happy living on a stage set somewhere in the early part of the last century. We find nothing to complain about in these lovely images courteously of Bakst, Diaghilev and company…enjoy.

“I am seeking nuances of richness, of blinding magnificence.” Leon Bakst

Like a flock of hell spawns
And stewards of the son of despite
We parry their guile with the magnificence of disgust
By the evidence of our heavy burden
Lies their mind drowning
Left desiccated without power

("Vredesbyrd" by Dimmu Borgir)
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