As spring dawns, avoid bringing allergens in the house

As spring dawns, avoid bringing allergens in the house

By Kathryn Weber As spring approaches, trees and plants will start to bloom, officially kicking off the allergy season! If you have asthma or allergies, this time of year can be both welcomed and feared. Sure, the weather's nicer, but if you're sneezing all the time or struggling to breathe, it's hard to enjoy it. Luckily, you can take steps to reduce the pollen and allergens in your home. Start in the bedroom  The one area of … [Read more...]

Keep your house cleaner by parking shoes at the door

Keep your house cleaner by parking shoes at the door

By Kathryn Weber If you could do one simple thing to have a cleaner house, carpets that look like new, and less bacteria in your home, would you do it? All you have to do it remove your shoes before coming into the house. Growing custom More and more Americans are making a habit of kicking off their shoes at the door. The is common practice in Hawaii as a way to keep sand out of the house, and widely popular in Asia. As Asian decorating … [Read more...]

Avoid bringing bed bugs home from vacation

Avoid bringing bed bugs home from vacation

By Kathryn Weber A chance to relax and escape the everyday demands of work and home is a real reward, but today's vacations bring with an extra worry besides airline baggage fees: bed bugs. Once rarely seen, these blood-sucking creatures are appearing with a vengeance at the very places we go to escape -- hotels and vacation rentals. But worse than finding bed bugs on vacation is bringing them home. DO SOME RESEARCH Before … [Read more...]

Beautify your bathroom with easy updates

Beautify your bathroom with easy updates

By Kathryn Weber Contrary to what you might think, updating and beautifying your bathroom doesn't have to include ripping out plumbing and reconfiguring layouts. Some paint and new accessories may be all it takes to transform your bath into an elegant, spa-like retreat. Opting for some unique items not usually seen in the bathroom can make the difference. MAKE IT LIVABLE The bathroom is no longer simply a perfunctory room for quick … [Read more...]

Feng shui can work wonders for your home — and you!

orchid with stone

By Kathryn Weber When we think of relationships, it's usually the ones we have with people. But every day we also interact with our homes. Based on that, you could say we have a "relationship" with our living space. Like relationships with people, our interactions with our homes can mirror the relationships we have with loved ones, friends and co-workers. These relationships can be productive or unhealthy, energizing or depressing. The question … [Read more...]

Trick out your house with color

paint-can-brush

By Kathryn Weber When designers are asked for the quick and inexpensive way to create a big impact in a home the answer is always the same: use paint color. OK, we get that. Color helps. But what color, what kind of sheen on the paint, and where should it go? Use these paint tips to trick out your house and give it a shot in the color arm. 1. Use accent walls. Accent walls are in again, and in a big way. Painting a single wall, particularly … [Read more...]

Storage ideas to keep your handbags in top shape

HANDBAGS

By Kathryn Weber There's lots of talk about shoe collections and women's love of shoe shopping these days. But there's another fashion accessory women love, too: handbags. From clutches to totes, purse collections have expanded so much that storing your favorite handbags means more than tossing them on a shelf. And with the rising price of purses, storing them well protects your investment. Helpful hints Because different purses vary in size, … [Read more...]

Right tools makes vacuuming stairs easier

Right tools makes vacuuming stairs easier

By Kathryn Weber When it comes to housecleaning, there's one area that tends to get overlooked: the stairs. Hoisting a heavy vacuum cleaner up and down stairs can be difficult and even dangerous. But by choosing the right tools, you can clean stairs easier and faster, without risking a fall. The dilemma The typical problem with carpeted stairs is the upright vacuum. While great for maneuvering around floors, an upright I hard to maneuver … [Read more...]

These improvements add instant value to your home

woman painting

By Kathryn Weber Even with today's real estate worries, our homes remain the single largest investments most of us make. And, regardless of the market in your area, it's always a good idea make improvements that keep your home updated and refreshed. Some home improvements can take years to return the investment, while others are simple, calling for more elbow grease than money. WHEN TO GO PRO When it comes to making improvements that … [Read more...]

Freshen up your outdoor grill station for fall

Freshen up your outdoor grill station for fall

By Kathryn Weber With summer's heat giving way to cooler temps, this is the perfect time to refresh your outdoor kitchen or grill area. If your grill is showing the wear and tear of heavy use, a tile backsplash is the perfect way to make your grilling station more attractive and easier to clean. The challenge with this project was the outdoor grill's countertop and soot-stained backsplash. Finished with limestone counters and a surround, … [Read more...]