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Chic Room Divider
Separate a large, undefined space into smaller areas with a sheer drape. Pale-blue sheerness creates a beautiful glowing color, almost like a painted wall. The transparency gives the room light and life, whereas an opaque curtain would close it off.
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Clever Television Screen
This shade can be easily attached to the inside of a store-bought shelf unit; a clean, flat panel in a neutral color makes the look as unobtrusive as possible. And on that rare occasion when you really do want to watch, it rolls up -- almost like being at the movies.
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A ho-hum space gets color and charisma with tapestry fabric hung behind a dresser in the bedroom. "It's so Old World 15th-century to hang tapestries," senior home editor Shane Powers says. "The material needs to be va-voom,with a little weight to it.This isn't a look for lightweight cotton."
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It's impossible to make canned goods or everyday china look like a pretty still life, so we highlighted the display we wanted to and hid the rest with an organdy shower curtain cut into panels.
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Cheery Shelving Unit
Designer Stephanie Wenzel has metal shelving that handles her storage, but colorful bins and floral panels clipped on with clothespins (so they're easy to swap out) take it from garage to girly.
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Camp store owner Holly Waterfield blends her workspace with personal, whimsical touches. The burlap-covered corkboard in Holly's office is festooned with fabric swatches, antique lace, photographs, and notes, and a swath of linen hides beneath the desk itself.
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Page Marchese Norman infuses her office with order, beauty, and a bit of herself. She uses yellow to add character to the space, but tempers it with neutrals. She uses canary-yellow artist's tape (which doesn't leave a residue) to label boxes and binders. You can also stick strips to mundane office occupants, like filing cabinets, for pops of color.
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Just because we need office supplies doesn't mean the office-supply store is the only place to buy them: A decanter is really a lab beaker, a test-tube holder houses pens, and a piece of leather becomes a mouse pad.
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This felt computer case can be tucked into a tote (no more clumsy laptop briefcase banging against your leg!). A hardware-store chain threaded through Page's ID makes it hard to lose, and a two-sided business-card holder separates her cards from work contacts.
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Switching from Rolodexes to these plastic books can help catalogue by subject rather than by alphabet. The cards can thrown in a box before you get around to filing them.
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Purchase a wooden drapery rod, two brackets, and hanging hardware from a home-supply store. Paint the drapery rod and brackets to match the bedroom walls, and let dry. Install the brackets above the bed, positioning them at the desired height, and put the rod in place. Drape the quilt over the rod, lining up the bottom edges so that it hangs evenly.
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Vintage glass knobs make attractive dish-towel hangers. A mixed-up assortment can look nice, and individual pieces often turn up at flea markets and salvage yards. Attach knobs to the wall with screws at least 3 inches long, to prevent them from loosening. Screws should fit snugly and be tightened flush against the fronts of the knobs.
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Seashell Soap Dish
Wash one big shell and one small shell. Make a ring of crumpled newspaper to cushion them as you work. Attach the big shell to the small shell, back to back, with a dab of two-part epoxy. Place the shells in the ring of newspaper, small shell down, so the paper supports the top shell and keeps it from slipping out of place. (Be sure the epoxy doesn't touch the paper.) Let dry thoroughly.
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This inexpensive faux-stone birdbath, which, when painted azure blue, turns storybook charming. (Important: Do not paint the interior of the bowl, as it can be harmful for birds.)
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Create a monochromatic vignette by painting a cluster of geometric plant containers in shocking color. For a finished look, top them off with low-slung foliage in the same palette. These spiffed-up cylinders are filled with cascading pink tropical plants.
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Lattice arches are traditionally intended as supported for climbing plants, and positioned at the entrance to pristine pathways in manicured gardens. But this citrus-hued version, casually placed in the middle of a flower patch, is a destination on its own.
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A narrow pathway through the shrubs is far more alluring when layered with tinted glass gravel. These tumbled, recycled pebbles come in various sizes and colors; we used about 50 pounds of medium-size blue gravel here. For a more contained and affordable idea, top off a large colored planter with pebbles in a matching hue.
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Paint color should relate to the flowers and foliage nearby. This wooden pyramid trellis packs a punch in bold acid green, inspired by the spiky yellow petals of the adjacent dahlias.
You'll Also Love
- Boxes and bins
- Bulletin boards and message centers
- Decorative pillows and throws
- Dining room
- Guest bedroom
- Home office
- Living room
- Outdoor spaces
- Rooms and Spaces
- Tips and helpful hints
- Utility spaces
- Walls and ceilings
- Window treatments
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