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Styling 101: How to Get That Scandinavian Look in Your Living Room

by Lidy Dipert

Scandinavian Styling 101

For as long as I can remember, I have gravitated toward Scandinavian design. Seeing images of homes that had that clean aesthetic made me want to transform my entire house into a peaceful and airy retreat. It's easy to believe that Scandinavian design means you have to be a purest: black, white, and grey spaces with very little clutter and furniture. But that's not necessarily true. There are all kinds of amazing styles that can mix...

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20 Ways to Stay Warm This Winter... Even When Your House is NOT

by Jennifer Farley

How to Keep Warm This Winter

It's cold outside... well, at least it is in most of the country. If you live in one of those places where the weather is 80 degrees all year you might want to skip this post.  Better yet, read it so you can survive when the weather drops to 65 degrees. 

We kid, warm weather dwellers. Believe me, all of us want to be you right now (and all year long). My own bitterness probably comes from having to avoid frost bite just going to get my mail everyday. Okay, that was a little dramatic. Seriously though, those of us who live in cold weather environments know the challenge of staying cozy without having to pay astronomical bills in the winter. Yes, there are a thousands ways you can renovate your home to help make your heating more efficient, but that doesn't help you right now. This post is about practical tips and small purchases that can help you stay warm today with out a renovation.   

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Whose Style is That? Louis XIV or Donald Trump? An Interior Design Guide to the New President

by Kate Wagner
Kate Wagner is the founder and editor of McMansion Hell, a web site for people who love to hate the ugly houses that became ubiquitous before (and after) the bubble burst. Photo: Sam Horine

If I had a dollar for every time I received a request to take on Donald Trump's interior design, I'd have enough to buy coffee for quite a few weeks - no small feat. 

As the Internet's chosen McMansion taxonomist, I have spent a lot of time with tacky. After spending so much time with tacky that my fingers have started to stick together at the mere thought of a grand estate, here is my thesis: 99% of McMansion decor is inspired by people like Donald Trump. As Fran Lebowitz so elegantly put it, "Donald Trump is a poor person's idea of a rich person." It's a pretty simple system, really: gold = rich. Columns = rich because banks have columns. Chandeliers = rich because they're big and shiny. You catch my drift. 

We as people have been fascinated by the dwellings of celebrities since the dawn of celebrities, who, back in the day, were usually royalty or the Pope. Donald Trump's Manhattan penthouse apartment is a particularly interesting (and recursive) instance where a celebrity decorates based on the taste of previous celebrities. In this case, King Louis XIV and King Louis XV of 17th and 18th century France. Luckily, the world was spared from the continuation of the heavily ornate Rococo style for a couple centuries thanks to the French Revolution. Then the 80s happened, and Donald Trump came with them. A fun guessing game to play is: Is it the French Palace of Versailles or a Donald Trump apartment?

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The Only Three Home Organization Books You Need To Get Through 2017

by Jennifer Farley

Isn't it funny how you can open up Pinterest and get a sense of exactly what time of year it is? A month ago it was filled Christmas ornaments, gifts, decoration, and food selections. Literally, the day after New Years, you open it up and are filled with how you can lose ten pounds in the next two months or start the year organizing your life. In the area of organization, there are so many wonderful ideas and tips that I personally can get overwhelmed by it all. It's like standing in front of a fire hydrant as it shoots out water. Yes, it is a little ironic that I am adding to the overwhelming mix, but I wanted to be simple by paring it down to three books. In my opinion, these are the only three books you will need for your organization goals of 2017.   

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How to: Purrfectly Simple DIY Cat Bed

by M.E. Russell

Make It! DIY Cat Bed

I love my cat. I'm not shy about admitting that (I even mention it in my bio). I'm also not ashamed to say I think she's the best cat in the world. Her name is Donut, but I also refer to her as "Angel Face" or "Precious Baby Kitty" (which drives my fiancé crazy, I'm sure). The cat drinks filtered water and has a basket full of toys. She's one of the more spoiled cats out there, and leads a pretty cushy life (as evidenced by this plushy DIY cat bed I made especially for her).          

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Five New Year's Commitments that Will Make Your Home a Happy Place

by Lidy Dipert

New Year's Resolutions for the Home

When I think of "home," I always start with a visual picture: the layout, the colors, and all the "stuff" that makes it so unique. But, of course, my real concept of home doesn't have anything to do with the physical structure or the things that sit inside it.  Home is a sense of peace and rest I experience by myself and with my family. And it's the place where I nurture relationships, and build community. And if I'm doing things right, it's the place that helps me stay sane. So this year, I'm giving my home a new commitment, and all my 2017 commitments are actually New Year's resolutions for the home. 

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How to: Origami-Inspired Paper Star Garland

by Chris Gardner


My favorite aspect of the holiday season is most certainly the decorating. It puts a festive spirit in your heart and a big smile on your face – the perfect recipe for holiday cheer. 

And while holiday decor can mean a variety of different things to different people, I think we can all agree that the best holiday decorations are both beautiful and inexpensive! This is Linda from A Sweet Afternoon here to show you how to make an easy, origami-inspired paper star garland that’s as festive as can be, and that you can make with any paper you have and just a few basic craft items.  By the end of this, you’ll know how to make two different types of folded stars for all your decorating needs!

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30 Awesome Tree Toppers You Can Buy or DIY this Christmas

by Jennifer Farley

30 Christmas Tree Toppers to Buy or DIY

In a couple of weeks you'll be snuggled up in front of a cozy fireplace, watching the snow fall outside your window, decorating your tree for the holiday seasons. Or maybe it'll still be sixty degrees outside, who knows? Either way, you'll want something special to put atop your festive fir. Here are 30 Christmas tree toppers you can DIY or buy this season.    

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IKEA Hack: How to Dye Faux Fur ... and Make It Into This Totally Stylish Lampshade

by Marwa Hayat
How To: Dye Faux Fur Pink and Make a Lampshade

Lately, I've been loving all the colorful furs I've been seeing in magazines, Pinterest, and my favorite interior decor sites. But when I saw how expensive it was to buy a few ... I knew the only way I'd be able to incorporate them into my home was to make them myself. So, I figured out this super simple technique to add some color and character to the common faux fur ... without creating a whole mess and spending a ton of money

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How to: Give your Mudroom an Easy Makeover with Smart, Space-Saving Storage

by Lidy Dipert

We had enough of our dated kitchen, so we decided to give it a full-on facelift, while staying on a budget. Follow along with our whole series: Lidy's Kitchen Makeover.

How To: Give your Mudroom an Easy Makeover

The last area we really needed to tackle in our kitchen makeover was the tiny mudroom entrance in the back of the kitchen. It was the black hole of the space where everything piled up and overflowed. We knew we wanted to keep it simple, while still having it...

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How to: Make a Simple Built-In Bench for Extra Storage

by Lidy Dipert

We'd had enough of our dated kitchen, so we decided to give it a full-on facelift, while staying on a budget. Follow along with our whole series: Lidy's Kitchen Makeover.

How to: Make a Simple Built-In Bench for Extra Storage

One of the more practical issues we faced with our current kitchen was inadequate storage. Because installing more cabinets was a bit out of our budget, we decided to make a simple built-in bench for a two-for-one punch: a place to sit AND a place to put...

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Say Hello to the New (New) Curbly Studio

by Alicia Lacy

Not so long ago – 16 months to be exact – we revealed our old, new studio space. It was a beautiful, sun-filled room that offered us a space to be creative and a way to separate our work life from our home life. It was quiet and peaceful, blocks from our house, and a stone's throw from our children's schools. But when the building changed ownership and major renovations loomed, it was impossible for us to remain. That was more than a little...

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When Autumn Leaves Start to Wall

by Bruno Bornsztein


Fun fact: Autumn Leaves was the first jazz standard I learned on guitar back in high school, when I though learning to play jazz guitar would make me cool and get girlfriends. It's a pretty basic song, and a good one to teach a 15-year-old me how to do a chord melody, which, on a guitar, is where you play a song's chords and melody at the same time, and ... hey, isn't this supposed to be a DIY blog!?

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