Dogs as Interior Design

Have you been thinking of redecorating your study? Tired of the Chinoiserie look that was all the rage a few years ago, and ready to move onto something more au courant?

Coming hot off the heels of the Olympics, The Sun Sentinel newspaper offers this riveting piece of ‘lifestyle’ journalism, in which author Vicky Moon and decorator Susan Rubin suggest you think horses, not zebras.

What’s the easiest way to achieve equestrian style? Author Vicky Moon and Wellington decorator Susan Rubin offer 10 tips.

1. Scour antique shops and flea markets for old paintings, trophies and china.

2. Think British. The American rodeo and Wild West don’t translate well to home decor.

3. Don’t be put off by objects that aren’t perfect. Equestrian-style is rarely pristine or crisp.

You know, in my experience the easiest way to achieve equestrian ‘style’ is to stick a big, badly in need of cleaning and polishing saddle in the middle of the room, preferably on newspaper. For added ambiance, leave your manure crusted barn boots beside it.

Next, hang some sweaty saddle blankets on any available drying surface. Leave some bottles of liniment and copies of Horse and Rider scattered on any left over surfaces, and intersperse with mid polish bits and pieces of tack, and voila! “Equestrian Style”, or at least style as I know it.

But, hey – I’m not a decorator. Little did I know that the best way to achieve this pinnacle of fabulousity it to run out and buy a dog. Or a pair of them, to be more accurate.

7. Make room in your life for not one, but two dogs. You have a choice of three breeds: Jack Russell, Corgi or — the hottest dog among the horsey set — a French bulldog.

Oh, how wonderful! Dogs as decorating items (well, more so than they already are). Anyone who rescues has already heard of the dog surrendered for clashing with the new sofa. Now we can look forward to dogs being turned in because they’re no longer in style.

“Sorry, can’t keep the Frenchies any longer, I’m afraid. I’ve re done the place in Mesopotamia chic, and the designer says I desperately need to pick up a pair of Salukis. Perhaps someone re doing their place in Late 1900’s Parisian Bordello might want them?”

Of course, there’s more to Equestrian Style than just some used trophies and a pair of Frenchies. Good heavens, you need to get a horse (of course).

10. Buy a horse. “A horse helps,” says Moon. “It’s not necessary, but you might want to think about a horse.”

I wonder if anyone pointed out to either of these morons that horses aren’t usually kept in the den? Mind you, building a barn could also help to add to the ‘ambience’, I suppose. Plus, when you’re tired of it, you can pass it on to those nice people at the feed lot up in Canada.

Horse meat is so Euro Chic.

I win the dumb caller of the year award!

I’ve had some impressively dumb ass puppy inquiry phone calls this year, but the one I got just minutes ago (on Christmas eve) wins.

stuffed Frenchie Caller, in desperate voice – “You sell Frenchies?”

Me – “umm, I breed them, yes.”

Caller – “I need a Frenchie puppy, right away. Can you get it shipped overnight, by courier? I’ll pay extra. I heard that UPS is doing last minute shipping for Christmas day.”

Me – “Uh, we don’t do that. We don’t ship at all, and we don’t sell Christmas puppies.”

Caller – “Oh dear, can you tell me someone who does? My daughter REALLY wants a Frenchie for Christmas.”

Me – “Apparently FAO Schwartz has some lovely Frenchie puppies for sale, and they ship. Try them.”

Caller – “Thanks!”

Who the heck thinks you can ship a puppy overnight in a box, like fruitcake?

Happy Holidays, everyone. Peace on earth to you, your family and your dogs (live or stuffed).

Carol and the Frenchies