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Shelterpop

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    Don't have time to browse all the online sample sales everyday? You're in luck: We searched them all and brought back the best.

    Editor's Pick:
    Taschen city guides by Angelika Taschen, $28 per book, Fab.com.

    Taschen city guidesFab.com


    It's just after labor day but the weather in New York is already feeling like fall. We're excited about this upcoming season's cooler climes, wearing our big coats and snuggling up on our couches with a good art tome on a windy day. Written by stylesetter and Taschen founder Angelika Taschen, these colorful city guides offer fashionable (and widely unknown) insider tips for travelers and locals alike.


    Want to snap this up? Move quickly. Sale ends Friday, 10am.

    Check back tomorrow for the next Daily Sampling!

     

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    In Random Recast, we find new uses for ordinary items. This week: Wine Bottles.

    Garden edging usually falls into two categories: Flimsy or expensive. But this garden edging made from wine bottles is both sturdy and economical. Just dig a hole that's deep enough to cover the top third of the bottle. Then, insert a bottle neck-side-down into the hole. Next, anchor the bottle neck by compacting dirt into the hole. Repeat until your border is finished.

    And just to put this out there: You don't have to drink gallons of wine to get enough bottles to use in this project. Instead, head over to a site like Freecycle, where people often give away their empties for those looking to craft. Or, make friends with your local restaurant, who can set aside the empty wine bottles from the night's service.

    Want to see other genius uses for everyday items? Then catch up with Random Recast!
    Random Recast: 4 New Uses for Egg Cartons
    Random Recast: 4 New Uses for T-Shirts
    Random Recast: 5 New Uses For Map Pages

     

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  • 09/06/11--10:43: Design Eye: The Giftees
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    Nope, it's not too early to think about holiday gift-giving. The Giftees salute what's best in gift-giving from around the web across 10 categories...selected by people like you!


    I know what you're thinking: It's barely back-to-school time and we're already talking about the holidays. But instead of putting cursor to cart, think of this contest as professional window shopping. In The Giftees, hosted by awesome shopping site Gifts.com, everyday people upload their favorite finds from anywhere on the internet. You can nominate that special find for "Best Gift" across 10 categories, from "Best Gift for Under $25" to "Hottest Toy for Holiday." And if your gift is chosen, you'll be entered to win a $500 gift card to Gifts.com. For the full details, visit The Giftees.

    Right now, I'm loving this Totem Cup Set, which consists of four stackable porcelain espresso cups. Do you think it's worthy of a nomination?

     

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    One of the harshest household cleaning solutions that most people try to avoid using is probably chemical oven cleaners. A smart and organic alternative is mixing a solution of 1/2 cup of salt, 1/2 cup of baking soda, 1/2 cup of water and 1/4 cup of vinegar.

    Make sure the oven is cool and turned off. Combine all the above ingredients to form a thick paste and cover any holes or openings in the oven with tin foil to keep any of the paste from dripping into the broiler. Then spread the mixture on the bottom and side walls of the oven and leave it inside overnight. Finally, mix together 1/4 cup water and 1/4 cup vinegar in a spray bottle and use the solution to clean and wipe off the paste the next day. Don't forget to remove the foil when you're all done.


    Have a cleaning tip to share? Let us know at Twitter.com/ShelterPop.

    Daily Clean-Up tipsChiot's Run, Flickr

     

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    The go-to tome for inspiring photographs of outdoor rooms and practical gardening tips is back with a new look. The magazine's editor-in-chief, Norman Vanamee, talks to us about the redesign, garden bloggers, and more.

    The newly relaunched Garden Design magazine is now on newsstands with a fresh, new modern look. According to editor-in-chief Norman Vanamee, the redesign includes not only stunning photographs of some of the most awe-inspiring gardens from around the world but also expanded editorial content that includes in-depth pieces on designer inspirations, modern homes that blur the lines of indoor-outdoor living, and gardening tips that are applicable and accessible to a wider audience.

    In conjunction with the redesign, the magazine took the lead in renovating the James Beard House Garden--the former home of the famed food writer and chef. The entire renovation is showcased in Garden Design's latest Oct/Nov issue, so swing by a newsstand and check it out.

    Scroll down for our Q&A with Vanamee about the big changes for the mag.



    Garden Design magazineGarden Design Oct/Nov 2011 cover


    1. We're longtime fans of Garden Design magazine. Why the redesign now?
    We wanted to keep the elements that have always been hallmarks of Garden Design: inspiring photography and useful, resource-packed articles.

    But at the same time, we wanted to cover a wider scope of topics and to bring in all sorts of readers who might not be familiar with the magazine.

    All of the redesign choices, including enlarging the word "Design," on the cover, so that it has equal weight with "Garden," emphasize the importance of creating a magazine that resonates with many readers. There are now many more entry points-with sidebars focusing on plants, products, and the techniques of garden design-that can bring a reader into the text and images in an inviting and engaged manner.

    2. What's the main difference between the old Garden Design magazine layout and the new one?
    The spread of the garden with hedges is from 2009 and the one showing a fireplace is from our most recent issue. As you can see, we are layering in a lot more information, both with visual elements and with text.

    On the fireplace spread, we have an interview with the designer that describes his inspiration for the space, callouts on the photograph, describing the key decisions that he made when working with the space, and a sidebar describing other fireplace options to consider. The idea is that along inspiration and how-to info, we want to give readers insight into the process of designing outdoor spaces.

    Rather than us dictating how to create your garden, we're showing our readers how to develop and perfect their own aesthetic.

    Garden Design magazineA spread from a 2009 issue of Garden Design: Courtesy of Garden Design


    Garden Design magazine A spread in the current Oct/Nov 2011 issue of Garden Design: Courtesy of Garden Design


    3. Do you think garden blogs have changed what people expect from a garden magazine?
    Yes, I absolutely think that gardening blogs have changed how people view both exterior and interior design. Design has become much more democratic, with the rise of home and garden tours (such as our My Garden feature). Ideas that were previously just aspirational are now inspirational, as people see how easy it is to incorporate some of these ideas into their own homes and gardens. And our website, GardenDesign.com is certainly a part of that online conversation.

    Now, the medium counts as much as the message and our print redesign focuses on creating that layered experience that is so unique to print, while our website, which was also redesigned, can play to the strength of the web, with large, beautiful photos and new information daily.

    4. What trends do you foresee coming up in the gardening world?
    I think garden design used to be seen as much more of a niche interest and it was often delegated to professionals. Home gardeners didn't necessarily see themselves working on the same level as the professionals. But now there are all these passionate enthusiasts talking about everything from what gets planted to how people use furniture to shape their outdoor spaces.

    The farm-to-table movement has had a huge sway on what people cultivate, more and more interior decorators want a say in what happens outside the home, and environmental considerations have had a huge impact on landscape architecture. Garden design has undergone a great democratization in the process and it reminds me of what has happened in the food world over the past 15 years and what happened in interior decorating in the 1970s. Our approach has been to open the pages to a wider sphere of ideas and contributors. People want to get in and get their hands dirty and try what works right away.

    Garden Design magazineGarden Design editor-in-chief Norman Vanamee: Photo by Ben Schott


    5. Do you have a favorite public garden?
    I was in Paris at the beginning of August and spent two days walking around the Tuileries Garden. I've been there before and read tons about its evolution from a private garden for Catherine de Medici to the site of revolutions and protests to a beloved public park. I love that Parisians still argue and jockey over every statue and proposed alteration.

    But mostly I love how it makes me feel. There are benches and chairs everywhere and it's impossible not to sit down and daydream. Or nap. Also, it is the make-out capital of Europe. Each time I visit I see couples locked in full-on, summer-of-love embrace. Clearly, a sign of good garden design.

     

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    Each week, bring a new bloom into your home and garden with our gardener's favorite floral find.


    Nicotiana mutabilis growing in the Brooklyn Botanic Garden's Fragrance Garden. Photo: Marie Viljoen


    The flowering tobaccos are easily the annual stars of September. Slow to start earlier in the year, they put on a growth spurt in late summer, raising their delicate flowers up to six feet above the garden. I like N. mutabilis for its namesake color-changing flowers, from white to pink, which are highly attractive to butterflies and humming birds. Plant it with its cousins, N. sylvestris (tall, white and scented) and N. alata (shorter with bright lime green flowers) for a spectacular floral display that lasts till frost.

     

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    A museum survey celebrates the prolific designer who brought clean lines and modernism into the world of home furnishings.

    Check out this story by our friends at The Daily Beast!



    featuring



    If your kitchen looks with it, if your bathroom is sleek, if your desk has clean lines, thank Dieter Rams. He's the man behind the products at Braun, the great German manufacturer that, for many decades now, has been making our lives modern. More than any other company, Braun has taught us to prefer clean form to surface decoration. Apple's lean iMac, iPhone, iPad-iAnything-wouldn't even exist, without Braun's example. On Aug. 27, the Museum of Modern Art in San Francisco opened a survey of great objects by Rams, who was chief of design at Braun from 1961 to 1995. Coffeemakers, calculators, radios, stereos, mixers, shavers-every kind of object for home and office will be on display, one sleeker than another.

    Rams has enunciated "10 Principles of Good Design."

    For a close look at the Rams' 10 principles of modern design, head over to The Daily Beast.


    And don't miss these great reads:
    Eight Must-See Fall Art Shows
    The Empress Of Fashion's Legacy
    Ann Woo's Photos

     

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    In Random Recast, we find new uses for everyday items. This week: Wine bottles.


    The bell-like shape of a wine bottle makes it a great "shade" for a single votive. But, how do you cut the glass? Enter the home glass bottle cutting kit. The go-to one is Ephrem's Bottle Cutter Kit. It's a low-tech heat-scoring device that uses a candle and a blade to score a bottle. Then, you'll plunge the scored bottle into ice, which shocks the glass and completes the cut.

    So, pretty simple. The one issue you'll want to watch out for is about sharp edges. Scored glass has a thin, sharp edge. Sanding is a must. Curbly recommends wet sanding (taking a hand sander, wetting it, then running it over the edge), which will produce a nice, smooth result.

    Missed yesterday's Random Recast project? Check it out here...
    Wine Bottles - Random Recast Day 1

     

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    Don't have time to browse all the online sample sales everyday? You're in luck: We searched them all and brought back the best.

    Editor's Pick:
    Travail vintage metal organizers from Aidan Gray, $78 each, Gilt Home.


    These vintage organizers are made from recycled sheet metal and zinc. We love the weathered finish and the industrial warehouse appeal. We see these fastened on the wall in a bathroom or by the entrance of an urban loft. These are an easy way to bring a city-inspired vibe into any room.


    Want to snap this up? Move quickly. Sale ends Friday at noon.

    Check back tomorrow for the next Daily Sampling!

     

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    It's a little unbelievable but the easiest recipe for a sink cleaner is comprised of two food ingredients: Lemon juice and Cream of Tartar (found in the spice aisle at a supermarket).

    Simply mix 3 tsp lemon juice and 3 tbs Cream of Tartar together (the amounts don't have to be exact), whip them up to create a smooth, thick paste and apply it to the grimy areas of your sink. Then just gently scrub the dirty spots thoroughly and finish it off by rinsing. Your sink will be gleaming and clean.


    Have a cleaning tip to share? Let us know at Twitter.com/ShelterPop.

    Daily Clean-Up tipsChiot's Run, Flickr

     

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    When time is running low, space is running short and money is running tight, a little clever repurposing can turn your party into a success. Entertaining expert Elaine Griffin shows you how to get multiple serving pieces...just by raiding your glassware cabinet.



    So, to recap: Glassware can totally go beyond drinks and can instead be used to serve food items. Champagne flutes make ingenious servers for fresh vegetables and dip, eliminating the need for a communal dip bowl (and how awkward is it for a crowd to deal with one of those anyway). Shot glasses turn a simple can of soup into multiple appetizers, while tall tumblers hold breadsticks upright and in reach.

    What are your favorite repurposing tips for entertaining? Let us know in the comments!

     

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    This super-fun pocket notebook by the well-known stationer is the latest to catch our eye. Don't miss the video for it!



    In a galaxy far, far away...these fabulous journals were brought down to earth by Moleskine. Their covers feature Star Wars-inspired graphics with an engraved metallic logo. Available with plain pages or rules, we know that these will be a hit amongst self-professed nerdy types...but we also think that the journals can do wonders to liven up any dreary meeting.

    Until you can get your hands on one (through Moleskine), take a break to check out this fun video featuring the journals:

     

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    The event designer and former housewife of New Jersey has teamed with HGTV for show on party-planning. We sat down with her to chat about the new series and got some pointers from her on how to entertain on the fly.

    Dina Manzo might be most recognized for her brief stint as one of the ladies on the Real Housewives of New Jersey, but she's a lot more. Manzo, a designer who runs the event-planning firm Design Affair has put together lavish dinner parties and soirees for some of the most fashionable A-listers coast-to-coast. Now she's coming out with Dina's Party, a series about throwing glamorous parties on the fly, which premieres on HGTV this Saturday at 10PM/9 central.

    Manzo took some time out of the busy schedule to talk to us about the show, the emotional men on it, and how to entertain...the right way.


    1. Were there any memorable homeowners that you worked with on your new show?
    They were all wonderful but I was lucky enough to do some parties for some personal friends. The pilot is for one of my very best friends who's moving to Dallas, TX. It was his surprise going away and he had no idea. I put it together with his partner and he had no idea at all! When I have a connection with the person, that's when it's the most amazing.

    2. What's your favorite part of every show?
    The reveal. It's when I finally get to surprise them and people can't even believe it.
    Especially the men involved...they got quite emotional about the reveal.

    3. What was your favorite party theme in the show?
    There was a Vegas episode that was lots of fun. It was a birthday party for a gentleman who loves Vegas. Being married with children, it wasn't as easy for him to get away so we brought Vegas to New Jersey. And one of the things we did was recreate the hand-blown chandeliers in the hotels and hung them above the dinner table.

    There was also an episode in the Hamptons when I was actually on vacation during month of July, and they tricked me into throwing a party there. It was for a socialite who's used to the red carpet soirees but we gave them a homegrown Hamptons for something a little different.


    4. Funniest moment?
    Well it wasn't a funny one, but one of my favorite moments was at the surprise party for my friend. He walked in and had no clue and everyone was crying.

    The weather in New Jersey has been insane, from hurricanes and tornadoes coming through. And throughout the pilot there was a blizzard. It's like I've gone through every weather that you can think of. Looking back, it's funny now but not at the time.

    5. Was there anything unexpected that came up for you as an event designer?
    We had three days to make phone calls and set up everything up and throw the party. Usually I have around 6 months. I have to say I was surprised that I was able to pull everything together.

    6. We're quickly approaching the holidays, which is when a lot of entertaining takes place. We'd love some of your tips. First off, how do you get people to RSVP to one of your events?
    I'm totally against an Evite. It's so impersonal and you see everyone who's declined. Invitation by snail mail is old fashioned, but that's unexpected and it gets people excited about the theme of the party. I usually put together a little sneak peak arrangement to include in the mail invite to give people an idea of the decor and it gets people to want to see what the party will be like. Just remember to send your invites out 8 weeks in advance so you're the first one that gets to their door because if you're too late they'll have committed to something else during the holidays and all the other events.


    7. When should you "outsource" your needs for an event?
    It depends. It helps to hire someone if you have a demanding job or have children. People hire us because their lifestyles are too hectic. For weddings you definitely don't want to be stressed out, so a wedding planner is the best thing to keep things stress-free and romantic.

    8. When does an event warrant a caterer and a bartender?
    If you're the kind of host who wants to be on the dance floor and spending time with people, I'd say you should hire help even if it's 15 people. It really depends on you. If you want to be with your friends instead of going crazy running around, I would suggest spending an extra couple dollars getting help.

    9. When should you hire a florist?
    Flowers can be as simple as cutting hydrangeas from the backyard, which is what I do. If flower arrangement is important to you, always get a florist. It's always good to If just stick to one kind of flower and make it so that it's meant to be that way. This helps make everything look right in color, size, and scale. We did a party once with just all supermarket roses and it turned out great.


    10. What are your three essential tips for quick and easy entertaining on the fly?
    If you are working with cocktail foods, stick to appetizers that you can eat with one hand. Ready-made appetizers are great. This lets people walk around to get to know each other.

    I also love using produce and fruits and vegetables for decor--bowls with clementines, apples during fall. I've even used fresh basil and corn and placed them in buckets, which was easy and looked great.

    Remember that food and music are the most important things. The music you choose should go along with the guests at your party, not just what you love. And the iPod is the best since you can customize your mix for the party.

    Another tip: Candlelight everywhere is cheap and great. Just don't forget to blow them out at the end of the night!

    11. What are three words that describe a successful party to you?
    Memorable, meaningful, beautiful.

    12. How do you get people to leave once a party is over?
    I start to clean up. And maybe put the lights up and turn the music up and hope that they get the hint.

     

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    In Random Recast, we find new uses for everyday items. This week: Wine bottles.


    Today's project is an amazingly simple one: Use leftover wine bottles as dispensers for olive oil, vinegar or anything that you can possibly pour. Smaller ones (such as splits and bottles of dessert wine) are better for food-related pourables, since it seems unlikely that you'd want a 750mL dispenser of olive oil handy. Save the larger ones for stylishly serving water, bistro style.

    A few notes before you do this: You can remove all labels and stickers easily by soaking the bottle in soapy water overnight. And for a controlled pour, fit the bottle with a nozzle (like the OXO Olive Oil Pourer from Crate and Barrel, though cheaper options are available at craft and baking supply stores) and you're ready to go.

    Missed this week's other Random Recast projects featuring wine bottles? Then check out...

    Wine Bottle Candle Holders
    Wine Bottle Garden Wall

     

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    Lose those chemical-based bathroom cleaners even if they seem to do the magic. The last thing you need when cleaning your toilet is to inhale toxic fumes while scrubbing and cleaning away. Instead try this natural homemade toilet bowl cleaner made of 2 tbs baking soda, 1 tbs olive oil and 3-4 drops essential oil (optional).

    Just pour the baking soda and olive oil into your toilet bowl and scrub it with a toilet brush. Add in a few drops of scented oil as a deodorizer.


    Have a cleaning tip to share? Let us know at Twitter.com/ShelterPop.

    Daily Clean-Up tipsChiot's Run, Flickr

     

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  • 09/10/11--16:21: Decorating With Gray
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    From its often gloomy implications to its sophisticated (and apparently escapist) appeal in decorating, we consult color expert Kate Smith of Sensational Color on the psychology behind this neutral tone and how to make it work in our homes.

    When it comes to the color gray, everything from rainy days to industrial lofts come to mind. But the neutral tone has long been a decorating staple and it's very much the color of the moment according to color expert Kate Smith at Sensational Color. "We're very attracted to gray right now," says Smith. "Black and white are absolutes and gray is the middle ground. It feels balanced and there's something very clean and simple about it."

    There's no denying the subtle beauty and elegance of gray, but we were curious about the deeper meaning behind bringing this color into our homes and what it conveys. We talk to Smith who offers us some insight on the psychology behind gray and ways to use it indoors.

    1. We see gray everyday, everywhere outdoors, but is there a greater meaning when it's used in your home?
    "It seems a lot of us are feeling the need to relax and escape from our often complex and overloaded lives, so gray is a great color for helping us turn off and get away. It's a more peaceful color that's clean and simple and yet beautiful and sophisticated."

    2. Gray is a neutral color that sometimes seems dull, do you think that is still the case?
    "There are so many sophisticated grays that are more complex and it's no longer just the blending of just black and white. Complex grays are colors that tend to say 'ish' when you're looking at them, and those grayish tone are ones that can hold our attention for a long time. Attraction to gray isn't just about versatility, it's a desire for sophistication and simplification from a more complex world.

    Smith suggests a couple approaches to applying gray inside your home. Scroll down to see five different ways.


    Accent wall: "Gray is a great color that provides an ethereal backdrop," says Smith. "It's atmospheric and there's an openness to it. If you're using a mid-tone gray, paint all the walls. If you're using a strong gray, like gray flannel color, paint one wall for an accent wall, such as the wall behind the bed."

    gray floorshighstrungloner, Flickr


    Floor: "The floor is a great place to bring in gray, polished concrete for example. In general, the gray floor tends to be liked by people who want to communicate sophistication as opposed to the warmer wood tones. It also evokes a certain stability and there's a groundedness and sturdiness to it."

    Ceiling: "This can work, but be careful that it might remind you of a gray day. From a more psychological stance, a home with a gray ceiling could mean that the person might have a lot on their mind and a lot coming at them and they want to have a neutral surface. And gray is a resting place here that the eye and mind needs."


    Sofa: "For a sofa, darker gray makes more of a statement and seems to be more about communicating a strong, trusted appeal. Light gray would be more about a cool, clean appeal and less of a statement but more of a blending."


    Bedding: "Gray makes beautiful bedding. It's a great place to mix subtle texture. Gray bedding conveys softness, subtlety and low contrast, and it can be meditative, relaxing, calming and introspective.


    Also check out our story on how to decorate with green!

     

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    A combination of purple and white blooms that are irresistibly alluring.


    Verbena bonariensis and Cleome. Photo: Marie Viljoen


    When thinking of plant combinations I tend to steer clear of annuals and biennials, choosing instead perennials that will return year after year in waves of seasonal color. But it is very hard to resist the charm of this graceful combination. Cleome (also known as spider flower) and Verbena bonariensis both grow over four feet tall. While slender, the Cleome still manages to give the impression of luscious fullness and draws the eye while the skinny Verbena effortlessly insinuates itself above and between the sturdier stalks. The white and purple color pairing is arresting from a distance and invites closer inspection. Verbena self-seeds very freely so be sure to dead head religiously (it's therapeutic!) before it sets seed in order to save yourself some serious weeding the following spring.

     

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    In Random Recast, we find new uses for ordinary things. This week, it was all about wine bottles.

    Day #4: Wine Bottle Pendant Lamps


    Talk about mood lighting! Wine bottles make the perfect sculptural glass lampshade for a lovely outdoor light. Here's why: The colored glass gorgeously tints candlelight into a romantic glow, while the skinny neck is just the right size to house a hanging chain or wire.

    To make your own version inspired by this pendant from etsy artisan GreenIlluminations, you'll need a bottle-cutting kit (such as Ephrem's Bottle-Cutting Kit), wire (and/or a chain small enough to fit inside the neck of the bottle) and a tea light candle. For the full tutorial, visit Instructables.

    Day #3: Wine Bottle Decanters

    Simple but great: Use wine bottles to pour your favorite olive oils, vinegars and even liquid soaps. All you'll need is a pouring nozzle...which fits right into the neck of a wine bottle.

    Day #2: Wine Bottle Table Lanterns


    Like the pendant light, only for your table: Cut wine bottles become inventive candle displays, again with the help of a bottle cutting kit.

    Day #1: Wine Bottle Garden Edging

    wine-bottlesLondon Permaculture, flickr


    And finally, the project that launched a million questions on where one can find enough wine bottles to create edging. The answer? Freecycle, or befriending your local restaurant.

    Want more ideas on how you can turn everyday objects into something a little more creative? Then check out...

    Random Recast: 5 New Uses for Map Pages
    Random Recast: 4 New Ways with Old T-Shirts

    Random Recast: 4 New Uses for Egg Cartons

     

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    Here's an easy way to keep your silverware polished and shiny. Fill up your sink with hot water then douse baking soda into the sink. Put in a sheet of tin foil and then set the silverware in the sink and let it soak for at least an hour. Finish off by rinsing and wiping the pieces clean.


    Have a cleaning tip to share? Let us know at Twitter.com/ShelterPop.

    Daily Clean-Up tipsChiot's Run, Flickr

     

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    Four designers offer insight on how to make your home a fun and lighthearted place for you and your family and friends.

    This week as we look at how your home can help solve your problems we're exploring how it can help you lighten up and have some fun. We reached out to the New York Design Center's new Access to Design designers to get their thoughts and tips on how your home can get you to be relax and kick back a little more. (You can also get great advice and find a designer at accesstodesign@nydc.com.)

    Tony Calarco


    Evelyn Benatar of New York Interior Design says to turn work into pleasure.
    "A home office is a wonderful place to have some fun. It is a personal sanctuary that should put a smile on your face every time you enter. This home office was designed with just that in mind. There is a silver shag carpet, a large-scale pattern on the walls, and bright blocks of intense color on the drapery fabric and ottoman. The photo was taken by the owner's son and blown up into an edgy piece of artwork. This is the kind of office that is not too serious and encourages inspiration and creativity."

    NYDC NVM InteriorsCourtesy of NVM Interiors


    Nina Morton of NVM Interiors brings in bold colors and a touch of the unexpected.
    "It's always a good idea to have fun in your home! Fun to me stands for Fantastic, Unique, and Novel. I like to mix color and whimsy in a space to suggest adventure and style. In this New York City playroom, the bright blue sofa and the yellow school bus are an example of what my sense of having fun is."



    Glenn Lawson of Glenn Lawson Interior Design suggests switching things up regularly to make rooms interesting.
    "Keep a radio in every room. Either keep them all tuned to the same station or make each one different to keep your ears fresh. Also, keep books and magazines in every room. You don't need a lot of them. Shuffle them and replace them every month or two to three weeks. Keep them fresh so you will be excited and want to read them. Make a conscious effort to rotate your paintings, accessories and pillows be it seasonally or every couple of months. It's guaranteed to bring a smile back to your face!"

    John Chadwick of Interiors by John Chadwick believes that having fun is a family affair.
    "One's home should always be a place where the family can have the most fun. First, of course, one must decide what their family considers to be fun. Ask your family what they consider to be fun and then create that fun environment in your home.

    One option: The creation of a wonderful home theater doesn't have to be space consuming or terribly expensive. Consulting a good A/V specialist can provide many low-cost and efficient solutions for great audio/visual ideas. Those ideas combined with the talents of a creative interior design professional can provide a space where your family can spend countless hours enjoying movies together.

    Another option? A home gym. It's a wholesome and healthy way for families to have fun together. Gym equipment has gotten both smaller in size and less expensive to purchase making it more and more appealing to most homeowners. Good space and equipment planning from a gym expert and appropriate interior design can create a home gym that you and your family will use and enjoy for years.

    Then there's a beautifully well-planned kitchen, which can be the gathering place of any home where parents and children can be experimental and prepare nourishing meals or creative desserts...things that everyone in the family can enjoy. Beautiful appropriate design is the key here."

     

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