Junk drawers get a bad rap, and while it is (mostly) well deserved, there is a way to get that beast sorted and organized once and for all. From creating categories to making smart choices about what goes in and what stays out, these eight tips can help transform junk drawers into “really useful stuff” drawers, ones that keep small items right where you need them.
Want to free up some room around the house? Rethink gift giving, give yourself a shopping mantra and just say, ‘No, thank you’ to freebies
Can you nicely refuse unwanted things others might try to foist on you? What can you say when relatives do not see the gifts they have given you proudly displayed on the mantel? And how can you win the battle with your own mind as you try to shove yet another item from the Target decor section into your shopping cart? These five tips can help you navigate these sticky situations, leaving your home unburdened by things you don’t use — and your friendships intact.
Thank-you notes, first-aid kit, clear glass vases … It’s easy to go with the flow when you’ve got the items you need at hand
A well-stocked home can help you handle the little surprises — drop-in guests, dastardly spills — life throws at you with a bit more grace. If you are setting up home for the first time or just want to refresh your space, these 10 checklists will keep you stocked with items you need for almost any occasion.
Curling up with popcorn and a movie, simmering a big pot of soup or chili on the stove, and getting the house and yard in shape after the lazy days of summer — in September, the comforts of home beckon. From feeding the birds to having the chimney cleaned, see if any of these to-dos make your list this month.
Coordinate your layers of lighting to help each one of your rooms look its best and work well for you
A well-lit room looks, works and feels better; it’s as simple as that. Whether you are starting from scratch with a new home or are looking to tailor your current space to better fit your needs, a lighting plan should be on your radar. Here’s the scoop on lighting plans — what they are, why you may want one, how to implement one and when to hire a pro.
Cathy Zaeske’s kids had moved on from their Lego blocks and taken up musical instruments, so it was time to get rid of the playroom that had taken over what had once been designated the dining area. Clearing things out gave her a good chance to rethink her home’s layout.
“Since the traditional dining room is right off the kitchen and has become the throughway to the screened-in porch, it receives lots of traffic and activity, not to mention the afternoon sun,” Zaeske, a decorator, explains. “I’m a big believer in designing a space for how people will live in it, not how they should live in it.” She refused to let the fact that her builder had written “dining room” on the floor plan fence her family in. And she didn’t let the same plans make her feel like she had to have a formal living room either. Repurposing and swapping spaces resulted in a functional layout tailored to her family.