Tuesday, April 2, 2013

April Fools' Day Aftermath

Paper mache deer head
Yesterday was an odd day. For those of you who did not grow up on this planet, it was April Fools' Day, where the tradition is hoaxes and practical jokes. This year I decided to combine April Fools' Day with social commentary on the awful trend of using dead animals in interior design. Most of you got it, a few did not.

Here is a favorite comment -

"Thanks for a great April Fool's joke used to bring attention to an important topic. This isn't, IMO, a "design" or "taste" issue - it's a humanity issue. Animals killed purely for sport, sewn together at their hind quarters and bedazzled with fabric is just horrifying. There is no redeeming factor here - these aren't animals killed for food humanely by people who used animals as food; these were animals killed by people who thought it was funny to shoot and kill and then stuff them and ship them home and laugh about them while they hung on their walls. Sorry to get so worked up, but thanks CC - I adore you for sticking up for pink, Palm Beach Chic, and animal welfare."

One follower had a meltdown -

"This is the most surprising and horrific post I've ever seen related to fashion design. You are help creating a demand for animals that will decimate populations already endangered and also employ suffering and an untimely death for "decorations." What's worse is that you dress the bodies up in costume as some sort of humorous attempt at clever decor -- when you know full well that these majestic animals were in fact, killed for this purpose. It's not only creepy, but immoral. These animals are a part of our natural world; They are important part of the web of life and stand as symbols of majesty and beauty -- in their own living world. Wild animals such as you portray are currently suffering and endangered by the mass slaughter by poachers for their coats, plumage and ivory, For shame that you would project such a oblivious attitude towards these animals all for the sake of superficial show. I hope that you will revise your thinking -- borrow from nature, yes -- but do not kill the precious few we have left! Manmade textiles and materials are a much better choice than Dead Animals. Your cynicism is so hard to take. There is nothing Chic about this. Please write an apology to your readers and make a donation to the World Wildlife Fund to actively support the preservation of these animals.

I hope I don't have to release myself from your blog because I've enjoyed it -- until now."

After emailing her and explaining that I was trying to shine a light on this horrible trend, she got even more livid that she had been duped -

"You know, it's really a stupid joke Beth because it's not funny and because clearly so many of your readers also believed it to be true. I wouldn't do a piece on jewelry from Holocaust victims' fillings for April Fools -- this is in the same vein of horrendously bad taste and poor judgment on your part as Dead Animals. That you could take up my time for a post and "fool" a busy educated journalist and mother shows an incredible lack of judgment on your part, it's beyond the pale. I subscribe only for design, not tasteless jokes at my expense.

I'm unsubscribing."

Yikes!!!!! She sounds like lots of fun.

Update - a great email I received just now -

"I am sorry the other person did not get it and chose to make a horrifying Holocaust reference; she needs to push a faux bamboo gilded bar cart over to her sofa, pour herself a frosty cocktail, lie down on a Scalamandre pillow, don a Lilly P eye mask, open an enameled pill box, remove a Xanax, swallow it, and get over it. "

Well, back to interior design and Chinoiserie. This week I am focusing on a DIY version of the juju shown below from the apartment of Lonny editor Michelle Adams since I can't find it anywhere. There are lots of DIY tutorials.

I will also be working on styling my bookshelves for my home office makeover. I have a Pinterest board on bookshelf styling here.

I am awaiting one more piece of art for the gallery wall for my office and I will begin the framing. I have a Pinterest board on gallery walls including some with Chinoiserie and some with pink walls for inspiration here since many gallery walls are more modern or monochromatic than mine will be.


  1. For what it is worth I thought that your post was witty and chic. Using humor to point out that the Emperor has no clothes is an age old and and effective way to shed light on an issue.

  2. Ditto to Kayce's comment. Also, a regular reader of your blog would know about your distaste of this trend (as you've posted about it before), as well as your April Fool's post tradition.

  3. yes, we know about your April Fool's tradition! Sorry to hear others had not heard the word. Keep blogging, Beth - love what you're doing!

  4. Oh my! Sorry that you had to deal with that yesterday! I am about to check out your gallery wall ideas on pinterest...I am searching for some good inspiration for a client! Take care, Caroline

  5. I beg to differ with your unsubscribing reader, and find that consciousness-raising is always worthwhile. I suspect that she is more embarrassed at her slowness of wit, than resentful that you published "tasteless jokes at [her] expense".

  6. I believe your "critic" thought it was ok to kill animals for survival purposes, just not for sport. My heart breaks over the killing of beautiful animals, and I hope that someday sport killing will be outlawed. However, I am appalled that she would trivialize the Holocaust as she did. There is nothing at all comparable between the slaughter of millions of human beings and the killing of animals for sport, no matter how tragic the latter is. I am sorry that you had to be subjected to this person's bad attitude and seriously inappropriate understanding of history.

  7. Wow. If this person thought she looked like a fool before....she really looked like one after the second comment! Brings to mind something my dear daddy used to say; "tis better to be silent and thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt." Keep doing what you are doing, love it.

  8. Geez Louise, sorta' "over kill" if you ask me;) It was hilarious & I think this journalist/Mom is over worked & stressed trying to "do it all." It was a great expose of deathly decor & poignant journalism. Keep it real & Rock on Beth!

  9. I guess the grandmother thing got to me. I spent a lot of time trying to think of something nice to say, haha. April Fool wasn't on my mine.
    Thank goodness.

  10. I realized right away it was your April Fool's post. But I have to say this time I was creeped out by it. Many of the photos you posted were very disturbing to me, especially the ones near the end with jewels, etc. I can't imagine the type of person that created those. At first I thought you took it all a bit too far, but then realized the impact you were trying to make. Well done!