9 Secrets Only Contractors Know
Sep09

9 Secrets Only Contractors Know

Before you even think of working with a renovation pro, consider this insider intel from our panel of expert contractors Q: What are the most common mistakes people make when choosing a contractor? A: Number one: choosing the contractor based solely on price. It may make your wallet happy, but the lowest bid isn’t always the best. Number two: not checking references and inspecting the contractor’s work. The truth is that...

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10 Best Flowers to Plant in Fall
Sep07

10 Best Flowers to Plant in Fall

1 of 10 Ideeone / Getty Images Sweet Peas (Lathyrus odoratus) An old cottage garden favorite, rambling sweet peas in all shades of pastels take off when planted alongside a fence line or allowed to overtake a trellis. Plant in rich, amended soil and water deeply and regularly to encourage vigorous roots. To prolong flowering, pick stems or deadhead often. 2 of 10 Flowerphotos / Getty Images Geum (Geum coccineum) Dainty 1″...

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How to Carve Elegant Pumpkins
Aug26

How to Carve Elegant Pumpkins

We asked one of our favorite artists, Seattle-based linocut printmaker and painter Jennifer Ament, how she’d translate her Northwest-influenced designs to pumpkin carvings—and were wowed by the results. Inspired by the landscape and wildlife near her favorite spot at Lake Sammamish, Ament’s artful carvings trump the idea that Halloween decor has to feel kitschy. (And serve as proof that it always works to find...

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How to Design a Wine Country Cottage
Aug26

How to Design a Wine Country Cottage

1. Open up the Cabinetry  Thomas J. Story Open shelving is having a moment and with good reason. An open concept makes everyday access easier and helps guests feel more comfortable accessing what they need, too. Without cabinets hiding the cluttered contents from view, you’re forced to edit and we think that’s a good thing. And perhaps most importantly, open shelves open up the room and make a kitchen feel more...

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Paint Your Bathtub
Aug26

Paint Your Bathtub

Lisa Romerein A claw-foot tub looks luxurious no matter what, but painting it a bright color gives your bathroom a playful, modern feel Materials Rust-bonding primer (only if there’s rust) Shellac-based primer Latex enamel, 1 quart Tools Drop cloths Rubber gloves, bucket, and sponge-type scrub pad Household cleaner, or deglosser if existing paint has a gloss finish Painter’s masking tape, 1 inch or wider Synthetic-bristle...

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8 Ways to Embrace ’70s Style at Home
Aug26

8 Ways to Embrace ’70s Style at Home

Walking into the 1920s West Hollywood bungalow owned by Heather Taylor and Alex de Cordoba, you’re entering a home filled not with Jazz Age glamour or sturdy Craftsman charm, but with the spirit of an era not universally beloved by those who lived through it: the 1970s. Maybe it helps that the 30-something couple view those years with the affectionate nostalgia of early childhood. “Stylis­tically, it’s one of my...

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