Thursday, June 25, 2009

The Good Ole' Days

If you found yourself part of the HGTV sensation RatemySpace, you might now be finding yourself a little upset at what it has become. Not only is the server so slow you have to wait hours to see the amount of rooms you used to peruse in mere minutes, but in an attempt to safeguard against the false voting habits of those at-home-designers who so desperately wanted to be on the front page, it has (in my opinion) lost its focus = inspiration.

In the midst of looking for my camera, which I have still yet to find, I found myself browsing for bedroom inspiration images online. Something about digging through piles of laundry and under beds will do that to you. RatemySpace, or RMS as the group affectionately referred it, used to be a stop in that search, and more often than not would provide me with a plethora of images that inspired, taught, gave thought to new ideas, and wowed. Take for instance these pictures I had saved in my file of RMS Inspiration pictures nearly 2-years ago:

This room, posted by chgosouthpaw is one of many rooms the RMS'er contributed to the (at the time) fantastic RMS site. Not only was this room inspirational beyond compare, but all of the rooms in this homeowners set were knock-out! I particularly loved the painting in this room. The thought of hanging something with such large scale, eating the entire space between headboard and crown moulding was, at the time, such an exciting and inspiring practice. This room, to date, is still one of, if not the most inspirational bedroom photo I've ever "clipped".

In another bedroom in the chgosouthpaw home, we again find the use of rich paint with great depth. Colors like this look one way in the morning, another mid afternoon, and a complete different color at night. They open up such a wealth of ability in the design and decorating process. Here again, like the room above, and in so many of the rooms in the chgosouthpaw home, they've used the valance/curtain combo that might feel a little dated if not in the contemporary way seen here. The neutral solids, the simple pleat, the banding to pull in the separation of color ... this is gorgeous. And, and there are a lot of ands to this room, the persimmon accents: the banding on the jute rug, the ottoman, the toss pillows - heaven.

Now these rooms are large - and the camera person here is not a novice with a canon point and click, nor is the designer just learning to style impeccably, it's the work of a professional. And that was one of the questionable aspects of RMS. Was it really the person's home? Was it really their work? This started a sparring of the "curious detectives" against the "protective poster": "I see a open house flag ... this is a showhouse!" Reply: NO! That's an AMERICAN flag! SHUT UP! You're just jealous! Quickly, posts came up, and went down. Different posters would have the same images, as if the two exact rooms could exist in different houses, worlds apart. And you could always tell the curious detectives of the bunch, with their no-fail question: "What color is the paint?" I was always curious, would you really know if I told you? And how many different paint colors can you collect in a day? How many walls do you have to paint, really? No matter - chgosouthpaw in particular was one of those questionable posters. Was it the homeowner? The designer? Was it from a local magazine, like Houston House and Home, or Washington Spaces? And no matter how many questions, compliments, or critiques chgosouthpaw received, they stayed very quiet. The tale-tell sign of a false-poster, so they say. But whether this room was "fake" to the poster had no real consequence to its beauty. It was and is inspirational, so I clipped it.
Here in the hallway to the master bedroom, you get a better sense of the truly designer touches in this home. The perfect juxtapose of the frames, the hanging, the art. It's magazine worthy ...

And the bathroom; well, lets just say - gorgeous and be done with it. Now, back to the RMS of today. Rooms like this one aren't so easy to come by, and if you can, they're at the bottom of the list, ranked 3.3/5.0 because someone with a room decorated ala (insert cliche store here) voted them a 1.0/5.0 with their many many screen names all beginning with the number 9, because they were so consumed with being ranked #1.

And as I sit here, still a little stirred from the week of distress, I look fondly to these pictures of the RMS of the "Good Ole' Days" and thank my lucky stars that I was led to the blogging world by RMS poster Gollum of Designs by Gollum, so that I could find truly inspirational images in the pages of all the blogs I visit daily. As far as I know, chgosouthpaw doesn't have a blog - and these images (so far) haven't surfaced as a "fake", and I hope they don't. I'm content to believe that inspirational rooms like this do exist in homes across the world - homes that haven't been manipulated by design magazines, or fame hungry designers; just simply beautiful rooms with inspiration on every wall. I hope you all have an inspiring weekend.


  1. hmmm, interesting, I dabbled with RMS but had all the same suspicions

    One of the reasons I was attracted to 'rating a space' was that it was a real space with the limitations that brings, not being a designer, not having a huge budget and as in the case of chgosouthpaw not having a bedroom that is bigger than this whole cottage I believe

    yeah I just don't really go there anymore and too many idiots giving their so-called design opinions on real homes that get lived in every day

    and funny that you were surfing bedrooms, I just posted mine and compared to these pics I feel my attempt pretty darn pathetic, but then I am no designer and the learning curve ahead of me is ermmm mighty steep

  2. Oh, yes, Artie! So sad what has happened to RMS! I never even visit my spaces there anymore...too much trouble! And the new stuff there...forget it! The spaces you shared are gorgeous! And I remember drooling over yours, too! That first outdoor tablescape that you did...classic! How nice that we have all found blogland...a kinder, gentler and frankly much prettier world! Great post...Debbie

  3. I do so agree with all you've said. It was ok to give courteous advice to someone who really wanted it, but it was so sad to read all the comments people left. It has turned out to be a really bad option for inspiration, and really tacky for the commentary. I find much more inspiration here on blogland. Hugs, Marty

  4. I'm having a moment of sadness here remembering how much joy I gleaned from my RMS days. The friendships formed there are still some of my dearest friends. I'm so glad you started a blog. I remember looking at the rooms of Artieben and thinking, "I wish I had 10% of this guys talent". Remember when we all found out that Gollum was actually Fatirenedecorates? Chgosouthpaw's rooms were also among my favorites. I'm glad to know that you're in agreement with me on what RMS has become. The "show" totally ruined it! Too bad! It was great to wander those halls wasn't it?

  5. At one time, in RMS's heyday...several of us bloggers first met there. We had an absolute BALL for about a year. I never ever rated a room...I never believed rooms should be rated...especially by non-pros. Good grief...rooms were meant to be loved and shown off but..not rated. ANYWAY...several of us really did have such fun on there...and drove some of the others NUTS. That was even more fun!! :) Then, it began to get nasty there so most of us pulled out. I have been trying to get back in to delete my photos but...haven't yet.
    See ya Sunday...

  6. Well put ArtieBen. I too have all but given up on RMS. It's just not worth all of the effort to sign in and rate, etc. And you're right it's just too slow. It was fun though while it lasted. I too am thankful that our Dear Gollum inspired us all to join her in blogland. I am so impressed with everyone's talents, and we get to share not only decorating but our lives, too. It's been a pleasure learning all about you ~ Robyn

  7. Alas, I've never really been to RMS -- although I did see some rooms linked from another board.

    But those bedrooms are classics.

    I can see where you get inspiration from them.

  8. I was wondering a bit back why after 3 mins nothing came up, so I gave up. It really has changed & yes I'm going to be mean. I'm not a fan of the show. If I hear the words "boutique hotel bedroom" one more time.....

  9. I've only been back to RMS a couple of times since I started blogging. You're right... the site is totally ruined. it doesn't seem like there's any sense of "family" like it was when all of us bloggers were there way back when. We used to have so much FUN with it.

    Justine :o )

  10. Morning, Dear Artieness! Oh, this was a great post! I too, remember RMS as a wonderful fun time and we had some gorgeous rooms to be inspired by! I remember your home and your rooms! You know I've gone back to RMS and it's terrible - too slow and no inspiration! Where are the pretty rooms? Even HGTV has changed - every room designed, well almost, looks so cold and there's no shows showcasing the traditional look anymore. Where's Homes Across America? Where's Kitty Bartholomew? It's so sad.
    Well, we can count our lucky stars we got to enjoy the hay day of RMS!
    We'll always remember. Hey, that's where I met you and most of my blogging buddies!
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  11. Beautiful rooms Artie! I must have gotten out of RMS just in time before all the ugliness started. I did have a couple of bad comments on my rooms and it was always by people who didn't have a enough guts to post their rooms! Hope you have a stress free weekend! Luanne

  12. I went there once,and those people scared me!Never went back.I just know what we like to live with,and to Hell with everybody else.They don't live here,we do.
    Nice post.I have inspiration,but it's raining on my day off!No rain here in florida for weeks and then it rains on my day off!Grrrr...

  13. Arty, I am a fairly new blogger and was never involved in RMS so can't give an opinion, but so glad you visited me and hope you will be back often. I am so pleased to have found you. This post is full of inspiration. I plan to be back when I have more time to explore. Good day!

  14. I remember one comment by a not so nice person ~ I had posted a photo of our high desert landscape. He/she came back with 'you can't take credit for this? Why would you post it?'

    I have totally given up on RMS but I would not be blogging today if I hadn't met picklepoo, fatirenedecorates, artieben, MoonlightandMagnolias, mom of a german shorthair, artis1111, beddow, therapistbyday, frenchkilt, hthrrue, vickydarnell, lv2look, twizzis, decopat, bjramsey, hey.paula, picketfences, gagesmom1, willow, mozartcat and so MANY others (yes, even rainhound)....

    I also clipped many photos for my inspiration folder! Enjoy your weekend, my friend.

  15. I ditto what Sheila said! Although I was a latecomer I have been blessed to have made such wonderful friends that also led me to blogland where I am constantly inspired by people like you! I am sorry that I never saw your rooms...or maybe I did but just don't remember! I was lucky that people like Sheila and Vanna and Laurie and Connie found my rooms and were so sweet! But I too noticed the pettiness and the downright meanness that people started exhibiting. What a shame! God Bless! Lauralu :)

  16. these pictures are gorgeous!

    thanks for stopping by my blog. i'm actually back & forth in austin & beaumont.i'm loving it! hope to connect with u sometime. so u r a realtor right & does staging with homes, is that right?

  17. Thanks artie for taking me back ...I loved rms and it was what taught me to use this computer thing, nothing but design would make me learn how to down load a picture...and you were alway so sweet to help a old lady like me. I never go back. After being down rated by the same nut over and over it lost all joy for me. But I am glad I found it and met so many nice, like minded people there. I am thankful the rms came along.

  18. Artie,
    RMS, is slower then molasses and last I looked I’m not getting any younger! I sometimes log on at 3:00 am (yes, I’m an insomniac) then can actually maneuver around the site.

  19. Hi there, thanks for stopping by my blog, I like to try to reply to all who stop. I like your patio. TTFN

  20. Impeccable examples Artie! Thank you for sharing them.

    Re the 'good ole' days' of RMS, how well do I remember them. On occasion I still visit there, but as stated by so many 'it is just not the same'.

    Changing the subject, I do hope you will find your camera SOON. Looking forward to your Newspaper debut and the unveiling of your finished patio. Hugs -Brenda-

  21. I am just wondering when you put up Mr. Linky?
    Thanks, Artie!!

  22. Wow! That bathroom is gorgeous!! I need one of those. :)

  23. i loved this Artie. I am always sorry I missed out on the fun of rms. i would have loved it. oh well. i love the first bedroom - with the picture - so pretty!!!!

  24. RMS was a lot of fun and you could see lovely inspiration rooms. I "dared" to post a room in April and was told:
    "the furniture seems huddled together like survivors in a lifeboat."

    HOW does one respond to THAT,

  25. Hi Artie :)

    Remember me? ;)
    I think I was one of the first people that commented on your space at RMS as hthrrue. Those were the days, but after 2 years it began to get on my nerves. I look back fondly on it, but you can never go back. Besides, most of our friends from there have blogs now and to me, that's much more fun :)

    Thanks for the memories...