Thursday, February 8, 2007

Beware the Stare: Everything We Know About Children We Learned from Diana Vreeland. (And Melanie Klein. And “Village of the Damned.”)

Possums, while we gather our thoughts in order to prepare our "first reaction" post about this episode, in which the contestants had to design a child's bedroom, we turn to what fairy godmother Diana Vreeland had to say on the subject of decorating children's rooms and child-rearing in general. (In fact, nowadays it's always our first reaction to anything: what would Diana Vreeland do?) And these suggestions are exactly what we would adopt if we were ever forced to adopt, or forced to play Mr. Belvedere.

And so, without further ado, in a special Thurday edition, why don’t you…

* rinse your blond child’s hair in dead champagne to keep its gold, as they do in France?

* have a jeune fille’s dressing table hung with a pale muslin petticoat with shaded boutonnieres of roses, violets, carnations, and cherries from Woolworth’s tacked on casually?

* paint a map of the world on all four walls of your boys’ nursery so they won’t grow up with a provincial point of view?

* turn your child into an Infanta for a fancy-dress party?

* teach your little girl to sew and have her do a modern sampler, made up of addresses of all the houses and apartments she has lived in in her stormy young life?

* build in a bunk like Shirley Temple’s in “Captain January” with drawers underneath for clothes and toys?