Today's post will be an unusual mixture of home décor, medieval navigation, and extragalactic data visualisation. Which sadly does not mean involving any interior designer astro-pirates, although it obviously should.
Hypothesis : there is no blog post that cannot be improved by the addition of interior designer astro-pirates.
Anyway, since the start of the year I've been indulging in some retail therapy. My home office where I've been working for most of the last two years is a 3x3m space consisting entirely of bog-standard IKEA furniture. You know, stuff like this :
I mean, it works. It's definitely a table. You can tell because you can put stuff on it and they stay cleverly well above the ground at an easily accessible height. It's not even ugly, but it's certainly minimalist... and that's just not my aesthetic at all.
After two years of various levels of lockdown (and a great deal longer in terms of living independently) I decided that I needed to do something about this. These days I have enough disposable income that I can indulge myself and there's just no need to go for the basic-but-boring stuff any more. The latest and hopefully final lockdown really pushed me into going slightly Grand Designs, even though I think such programs are only one step above Big Brother or Love Island in terms of sheer mindless inanity.
My preferred aesthetic is an 18/19th century drawing room. The sort of place the First Sea Lord of the Admiralty would gather his underlings to discuss an expedition to the Northwest Passage, all while sipping a big glass of brandy. Something like this :
Or perhaps this :
Or this :
I want it to look rich and dark. I want it to be cosy. I want it to be ornate. I want gleaming brass instruments that look functional but don't actually do anything useful. I want everything to have unnecessary detail. And - and this is the important bit - I want the walls to be covered in maps. Basically, I want the exact opposite of the IKEA design philosophy.
Of course this project suffers from a few teeny-weeny limitations :
- I have a 3x3m space to work with
- I'll need to transport most of my stuff at some point when we eventually get a permanent* home
- I'm not a millionaire.
|Not at all easy to photograph because of the lighting and room size. They look a lot nicer in reality.
|The miniature Stonehenge, oddly, sort of works.
|A clearer view of the image itself can been seen here. Fun to do as a one-off but it would be hell if regular publication figures were expected to conform to this sort of styling...