Mr. Hipster Goes Domestic


It’s true, in another life Mr. Hipster was an interior decorator. Most people were sports stars or pharaohs or Joan of Arc, but I put up drapes and decoupaged children’s dressers. Don’t ask how I know this, I just do.

So, much to my delight our great friend Wendy hooked us up with free tickets to the New York City Home Design Show through her job at

Over the decades since I was resurrected in the body of a somewhat sloppy, tussle-haired Christ-Killer, I have unlearned all the style and sophistication that came along with my past-life vocation. Nowadays my idea of chic is a bowling ball blue, low-slung vintage pleather chair and an enamel-top dining room table from the 30s that saw three generations of angry, mallet-wielding Italian children from Bensonhurst.

My de-education, as it seems, started at a young age. Growing up in a household filled with tortuous mission furniture and aptly named plein air paintings, I soon grew bored or unbearably uncomfortable with anything resembling dícor. When offered the chance to ditch my failing antique oak furniture, I went straight for the most modern, Scandinavian schlock I could find. This was pre-Ikea mind you, so my choice was cutting edge, if not foolhardy and ultimately short-sighted. Within months the dresser drawer bottoms gave out and the slats in my bed shifted, sending me rolling in sleepy circles to the plastic-wrapped trundle bed below. Now every tasteless slob and broke-ass college student in the universe owns a little bit of my frustration in the form of an Ikea bookcase, shaky dresser or disposable TV stand. In my adult years I actually placed a hex on Ikea and had to stop Mrs. Hipster from lighting a broken dresser aflame in their Elizabeth, NJ parking lot. We’ve since boycotted that disaster, but that’s a story for another time.

So we went to this show with nothing but high hopes and the genuine belief that something we saw would jumpstart the taste gene that had lain dormant, hidden under many nights of nacho dip, cocktail weenies and reality television, since our childhoods of shag carpet and crystal pyramids. After one trip around pier 94, I felt unchanged. That celluloid radio sitting on my dresser at home still seemed cool to me. The one cool display at the show, the Houses at Sagaponac, almost made me want to move to Long Island, but then I remembered that is was Long Island, and seeing as my taste was apparently already stuntedô One more pass brought about no change. The Mrs. saw a nice blanket from Hue, but it cost more than Bush’s war on terrorism.

So we left, pleased in the fact that the only person who can dictate your style is you. Know it. Own it.