Are “real” homes dead?

As some of you may know I am a interior design junkie and a blog junkie in general.  Wouldn’t really know it if you came inside my house but I am.  There were 2 posts this week that rather irked me so I thought I’d rant about them here (as I sit and type and hope Ru stays asleep for the rest of the night as she went to sleep at 5….(argh, it’s 9 now….I hope she doesn’t wake up and raring to go just as I am ready for sleep)…. Anyhow, I digress.

I was reading Emily Henderson’s blog Style by Emily Henderson when this post came up about the magic of photo editing.  Now I’m all for a little Photo-Shopping, “Yes, you may get rid of the huge carbuncle growing on the end of my nose”  but good gods, it’s in our home shots now….. They photoshopped out a HEATING GRATE!!!!  WTF?  It was so disruptive?  And they changed the furniture?!  No wonder I can’t find that blah, blah, mid-century modern credenza in light oak stain that I saw in that magazine…. It’s because it doesn’t exist anywhere…. on the planet……

Emily does say that magazine shots are supposed to be aspirational, that a magazine’s job is to inspire us, but personally I think she has gotten aspiration confused with inspiration…. as really they are 2 different things.  Anyhow…. wtf.  I think this is exactly the reason why I got so disgusted with the magazine Dwell that I stopped my subscription (though it is a love/hate relationship, kind of like the one I have with Ikea).

Here are the photos (edited on the left, “reality” on the right….. seriously. )


via Emily Henderson

Then this post came up on Apartment Therapy and I nearly commented….. but you have to sign up to comment and it was just too much work….”What is it like to be a full time home maker?”  I was rather offended, then I read the post and I was really offended (I actually wanted to send a hate email, though that’s how I roll, reactionary without often thinking about consequences….but I didn’t).  I gather the author just moved to a rural area for her partner’s job and is at, in my opinion loose ends.  I’ve read a few of her other posts in the past and just thought that she was a really unhappy person.  At that point I couldn’t blame her, I’d actually been in the same situation before and was very unhappy but you get through it.

However, the post in question really did feel offensive as if full time home makers were a slave to their partners.  Some of her questions to the blogosphere were (ripped directly from the post):


  • Has your partner ever added items to your to-do list? And if you’re the employed partner, have you ever wished/requested that your stay-at-home partner would take care of something they don’t?

  • What do you do if you feel there’s too much on your plate? And what do employed partners do if the basics are consistently being neglected (dishes/laundry not done)? How do you handle such situations? Is there a boss/employee feel to the discussions?

  • Does the employed partner express preferences- “I like my clothes hung like this and the table set like this”- and does the homemaker ignore them, take them as friendly suggestions, or always adhere to them?

  • How do you decide when you’re done working for the day? When your partner is done? When your list of tasks is complete? If your partner has a long, grueling week at work, do you take it upon yourself to complete additional projects, or do you stick to your usual workload?

  • If the stay-at-home partner starts pursuing non-paying interests such as volunteering, training for a triathlon, or learning an instrument, does everyone agree that certain household tasks can be set aside? Or does the employed partner pitch in?

    My thoughts were what does she think stay at home people do?  Apparently lots of cleaning and pandering to the working partner’s needs.  And stay at home people need to have set roles and must ask for exemptions if they start doing things like hobbies.

    Anyhow, this is a rant.  As a stay at home person (not much of a home maker as I more of a home messer) I have other things going on…. like a farm and winery, not to mention being a mom and a daughter.  Our roles aren’t set in stone as to who does what (with the exception of putting one kid to sleep), I don’t need to ask permission to do what I want to do…. what it this the Dark Ages?   Mostly I’m just flabbergasted that a young woman would come up with the post at all.  What I wonder is if reality is leaking into the post and she’s just trying to find her way. In which case I wish her all the luck in the world.


Rant over and out.


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