‘The House Always Wins: America’s Most Trusted Home Columnist’s Guide to Creating Your (Almost) Perfect Dream House’ by Marni Jameson
By Amy Hubbard, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
May 11, 2008
MARNI Jameson: dizzy, uncertain, overwhelmed ditz?
Don’t believe it for a second.
This author and home-design columnist (who also has written for the L.A. Times) is smart, seasoned, savvy and unwilling to settle for anything less than “just right.”
Her new book launches with an epiphany and sails through aggravation, turmoil, bargain hunting, major outlays of cash and numerous other ups and downs encountered when a person sets out to create his or her “dream home.” Eventually, she comes to a sane and satisfying conclusion.
Is she a schlub like the rest of us? I don’t buy it. But it does make for entertaining reading: She hates doing laundry. She weeps upon the discovery that her chosen drapery fabrics have been discontinued. She has dead trees in her frontyard and scratches all over her arms from planting. Her flowers promptly croak.
The adventure begins when her husband decides the family needs a really big change. He quits his corporate job, they sell the house and take their California-home profit to Colorado. There, he has a new job, and they buy a bigger, brand-new house on a nice chunk of land with Rocky Mountain views.
Jameson’s design and decorating juices begin flowing in earnest as she industriously works her way through their decorating budget and beyond.
The book takes shape around her first-things-first plan: Put your backgrounds in (the paint, carpet, cabinetry etc.), dress the windows (blinds and drapes), select and place good furniture and top off with accessories.
But within this framework, she hits on numerous topics. Her nuggets of advice run the gamut: how to select the right slab stone for countertops, how to buy the best area rug, how to avoid being gouged on builder upgrades, how to pack for a move, how to choose home- theater equipment, how to create a “tablescape” for your coffee table, and so on.