Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Decorate With White & Still Have Kids & Pets


Courtesy of Brian Patrick Flynn
Photography by Flynnside Out Productions

Hi Friends,

You Can Decorate With White and Still Have Kids and Pets. Have you always wanted to incorporate white into your home without it appearing sterile or stark? We've got one way to master this light and bright hue.

White bedding may seem impractical, but since it can be bleached, it's more durable than you would think. The trick to getting white bedding ensembles right is to layer different textures and patterns between the duvet, coverlet, throw blankets and skirts. With each white slightly darker or lighter than the next, the result looks perfectly balanced.

Layer, Layer, Layer...

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Live well,
Yvonne

Thursday, May 18, 2017

18 Things You Can Clean in the Washing Machine


Compliments of Chelsea Faulkner

Hi Friends,

By now, we all know that our washing machines can be used for so much more than clothes — think sneakers, bedding and even baseball hats. But did you know this magical cleaning machine is capable of so much more? There's a long laundry list (pun intended) of surprising household messes this handy appliance can tackle. And all you have to do is push "start."

Car Mats

iStock/gargantiopa

Those cloth floor mats in your car are totally machine-washable. If they're extra dirty or spotted with spill stains, shoot the soiled areas with a little stain remover before washing on warm with your normal detergent and hanging to dry. Try not to do this more than once every few months, however, as the rubber backing could start to deteriorate from too many spin cycles.

Plastic Shower Curtains & Liners

iStock/Jamesmcq24

I used to replace my liners every month or so when they started to show soap scum. Now I just throw them in the washer with a few bath towels and wash on cold with my regular laundry detergent. They come out looking good as new and save me the cost of two iced coffees a month.

Rubber Shower Mats


When your non-slip mat starts to look yucky, run it through the regular cycle with a few towels (these add extra scrubbing power) and a small amount of your normal detergent.

Yoga Mat

iStock/Tatomm

Unless the care label says otherwise, most yoga mats can be cleaned on the delicate cycle with no detergent and tossed in the dryer on medium heat.

Backpacks

iStock/Lifemoment

Cloth and canvas bags, including backpacks, reusable grocery bags, gym bags, purses and more, are usually washer friendly. Simply turn them inside-out, place in a mesh laundry bag and wash on warm with detergent. However, if your bag is bejeweled or decorated with iron-on appliques, you'll want to opt for hand wash instead.

Soft-Sided Lunch Boxes & Insulated Coolers

Skip Hop Zoo Zebra Lunchie, All Childrens Furniture

As always, check your care labels, but most insulated lunch boxes and coolers are totally fine to clean in the washing machine. Throw in with a few towels on cold, then hang upside-down with the zipper open to dry.

Rubber-Backed Rugs & Mats

Eric Perry, 2013, Scripps Networks, LLC

Cotton or synthetic rugs with rubber backs can be washed about once a month to remove mold, mildew and other bathroom nasties. Arrange the rug around the central agitator in the washer and add a few towels to balance the load. Wash on cold with a small amount of detergent, then hang to dry.

Pillows

iStock/AnaBGD

Pillows are essentially big sponges that soak up sweat, drool and dead skin cells, so it's a no-brainer that they need to be cleaned regularly. The best way to do that? In the washing machine, of course. Most pillows, even the down varieties, are machine-washable. Just add two pillows to your machine to balance the load, then wash in hot water with a cup of detergent and a cup of bleach. You may need to run a second rinse cycle if your pillows are extra fluffy. Dry feather-filled pillows on the 'air' setting and synthetic pillows on low heat with a couple of rubber dryer balls or sock-wrapped tennis balls. Repeat the drying process until your pillows are 100-percent free of moisture.

Sports Gear

iStock/ArtMarie

Place shoulder, knee and elbow pads, shin guards and gloves in individual laundry bags and wash on a regular, warm cycle with a small amount of detergent, then hang to dry.

Stuffed Animals

Flynnside Out Productions

If fluffy friends are looking a little dingy, a spin in the wash is a must. Remove any loose clothing items and place in a pillow case or mesh laundry bag before running through the gentle cycle with a small amount of regular detergent. (If your toys are stuffed with small beads, beans or styrofoam balls, you'll want to opt for hand-washing instead.)

Small Toys

Emily Fazio, 2016

Handheld toys, such as plastic building blocks, action figures, bath toys and even dog chew toys, can be placed in mesh laundry bags and run through the delicate cycle on cold.

Oven Mitts & Potholders

iStock/agrobacter

To keep dirty oven mitts and potholders looking and smelling good as new, simply add them in with your regular load of towels and hang to dry.

Patio Chair Cushions

Susan Pittard/Studio D (styled by Karin Olsen)

After a summer in the elements, your expensive patio chair cushions could probably use a good wash. If your machine is large enough, you can run cushions and chair pads through a regular wash cycle with a small amount of detergent and a cup of white vinegar, then line dry in direct sunlight for several hours until completely dry.

Curtains

Julie Soefer Photography

Unless they're made from a delicate material or have a tag that specifies 'dry clean only,' those dusty curtains can be washed in cool water on a slow spin cycle, then dried on low heat.

Mop Heads


Sanitize dirty mop heads after each use by placing in a mesh laundry bag and washing on hot. Hang to drip dry.

Pet Beds


To keep your furry friend happy and healthy, it's recommended to wash his or her bedding on a minimum biweekly basis. Luckily, it's as easy to clean your pup's bedding as it is your own. Just vacuum up any loose hair, remove any cover and toss the bed and bedding into the washing machine with a natural detergent. Wash on hot with an extra rinse cycle, then dry on high heat to kill any lingering pathogens.

Pet Collars & Leashes


Now that your pup's bed is squeaky clean, it's time to turn your attention to the accessories they wear most often: collars, harnesses and leashes. It's hard to tell, but these things can get gross pretty quick, especially if your pet spends a lot of time outside. To launder cloth or synthetic varieties, simply place them in a laundry bag to prevent tangling and toss in with a load of towels.

Microfiber Cleaning Cloths

Molly Winters

To clean these wonderful static-filled cloths, simply give them a quick rinse in the sink, then place in a mesh laundry bag or pillowcase. Run through the wash with a little detergent, then place the bag directly into the dryer with no dryer sheet. This helps maintain the cloths' static charge, which is the secret to their cleaning power.

Now sit back, relax and let the spin cycle do all the work.

Check back for more great ideas from your friends at Interior Design!

Your kind contribution will allow us to continue sharing great, no cost and cost saving ideas for your space. Click the "Donate" button below to make a contribution. Thank you!





Live well,
Yvonne

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Have You Cleaned This Lately?


Compliments of Farima Alavi

Hi Friends,

Your weekly cleaning most likely includes vacuuming, dusting, wiping down surfaces and general tidying up. While all these are important for a healthy home, you may be missing some of the dirtiest spots. Check out our top picks for what you should clean now such as your Toothbrush & Holder...

Disinfecting your toothbrush and holder is essential since they are used for personal hygiene. To properly clean, submerge the toothbrush head in mouthwash for at least 15 minutes, and rinse clean once a week. Make sure to replace your toothbrush often. To clean the holder, use a pipe cleaner to loosen any grime, and fill with mouthwash. Let sit for about 15 minutes before rinsing and drying. Eric Perry, 2014, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC.

Wood Cutting Board


To disinfect and maintain a wood cutting board, rinse immediately after each use. To disinfect, use a little hydrogen peroxide and gently scrub with a clean sponge. Let sit for a few minutes, and wipe with the sponge. To deodorize, regularly spray pure white vinegar, and wipe clean. To remove stains, sprinkle coarse salt and scour the surface with a lemon, cut side down. Let sit for 5 minutes before thoroughly rinsing.

Dog Toys

CI-Kong_Wubba-Dog-Toy

As much as you love your pet, Fido's mouth is not clean. To keep pet toys bacteria free the safe way, soak plastic and rubber toys in one part vinegar and one part water for at least 30 minutes. Then, rinse and dry. For plush toys, place in the washing machine on gentle cycle in a lingerie bag and with minimal or sensitive detergent. Put in the dryer on cold air or low heat.

Reusable Grocery Bags

Easy DIY Reversible Make Knot Bags, Debbie Wolfe

Designate a few bags for just meat and poultry items, and disinfect after every use by wiping down with an anti-bacterial wipe. For durable fabrics, run through the washing machine every couple of weeks and hang to dry. For more delicate fabrics, wipe down with a sponge and mild soap.

Earbuds

Greg Kahn/Getty Images, 2013, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC.

You probably use your earbuds daily, so they are one of the dirtiest items you own —especially if you share them. Use a wet toothbrush to loosen dust and dirt from the metal part. To properly disinfect, wipe down with a gentle cloth and a little mild soap.

Light Switches

Jeffrey Hamilton

You touch your light switch multiple times a day, so you need to keep it clean to prevent spreading germs. To disinfect, apply your cleaner of choice or rubbing alcohol on a clean cloth or paper towel, and wipe down the surface (Don't spray directly onto the plate). To get hard to reach cracks and corners, use a cotton swab. Repeat once a week.

So vacuuming and dusting are the obvious cleaning tasks, but as we've learned today we may be missing the dirtiest spots in our home...

Check back for more great ideas from your friends at Interior Design!

Your kind contribution will allow us to continue sharing great, no cost and cost saving ideas for your space. Click the "Donate" button below to make a contribution. Thank you!





Live well,
Yvonne

Tuesday, May 16, 2017


Courtesy of Jessica Dodell-Feder
Photography by Thomas Liggett

Hi Friends,

Banish blank walls and channel your inner artist with this totally doable, trendy DIY wall art project. Flea markets and thrift stores are overflowing with discarded china. Add a custom stencil, like numbers or a monogram, and hang to create unique wall art on the cheap. Get the floral china wall art how-to from below.

Materials Needed:
  • china (matching or not)
  • number stencil (such as used above, set from $18, stencilsonline.com)
  • spray mount
  • foam pouncer
  • paint
  • wall plate hangers

Step 1
Center a stencil on a plate. Adhere it with repositionable spray mount, then use a foam pouncer to fill in with latex paint. Remove the stencil and let dry.

Step 2
Mount to the wall using plate hangers.

Easy and inexpensive project that will transform your blank, boring walls to VoilĂ ...

Check back for more great ideas from your friends at Interior Design!

Your kind contribution will allow us to continue sharing great, no cost and cost saving ideas for your space. Click the "Donate" button below to make a contribution. Thank you!





Live well,
Yvonne

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Happy Mother's Day!


Hi Friends,

Dedicated to all our wonderful Mothers from your friends at Interior Design - May you enjoy as you are celebrated this Mother's Day with warmest thoughts and special wishes.

A Mother's Eyes

A mother's eyes so often shine with laughter, joy, or tears....and with the pride of seeing children blossom through the years. A mother's lips give kisses, cautions, praise, and good advice. She shares her faith and values through hard work and sacrifice. A mother's hands are busy trying to meet her children's needs, but quick to give applause whenever one of them succeeds. Throughout her children's lives, a mother plays a vital part. She is their shining star, their inspiration, and their heart.

Happy Mother's Day!

Your kind contribution will allow us to continue sharing great, no cost and cost saving ideas for your space. Click the "Donate" button below to make a contribution. Thank you!




Live well,
Yvonne

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

No-Sew Drapes That "Hang" Beautifully


Courtesy of Funky Junk Interiors

Hi Friends,

A canvas drop cloth, a coat hanger and some clothespins make this window treatment not only inexpensive but super easy to make. Donna from Funky Junk Interiors draped a drop cloth over a coat hanger and clipped it into place with clothespins. The hook of the coat hanger simply balances on the window trim for a fun, whimsical look. The entire project was less than $25.

You don't have to blow your budget to bring beautiful window treatments into your home. Share some of your window treatment options with us too; look forward to hearing from you...

Check back for more great ideas from your friends at Interior Design!

Your kind contribution will allow us to continue sharing great, no cost and cost saving ideas for your space. Click the "Donate" button below to make a contribution. Thank you!





Live well,
Yvonne

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Household Clutter: 15 Things to Get Rid of Right Now


Courtesy of HGTV

Hi Friends,

Ready to rid your house of clutter? Start here with these items you're sure not to miss.

Ditch the cardboard boxes and plastic bags that go with your cereal, snacks and dry goods. They're ugly, take up lots of space and don't keep your food fresh. Instead, opt for glass jars (like HGTV Magazine did in our feature) or airtight food storage containers.

Wire Hangers

Mommie Dearest said it best: No more wire hangers! Ditch those dry cleaner hangers for matching plastic or wooden versions.

Your Dish Sponge

Photo By: Natalie Wright

When was the last time you replaced the sponge in your kitchen sink? If it's been more than a month, toss it. In between, sanitize it with a spin in the dishwasher.

Old Shoes

Get rid of any shoes that are broken beyond repair, worn out or missing a mate. Can't remember the last time you wore a still-good pair? Donate to a thrift store.

Clothing You've Never Worn

Donate or sell any items of clothing you've had for more than a year without wearing.

Too-Small Kids' Clothing

The same goes for clothing your children can no longer wear: Unless it's an heirloom, donate or sell to free up the space. From Brian Patrick Flynn

Socks Without a Mate

We all have that bag of socks without their, ahem, sole mate. If you've done a full round of laundry without finding their partner, it's time to let them go.

Expired Makeup

Photo By: Melissa Hrusha

How long have those cosmetics been lurking in your makeup bag? Mascara should be replaced every three months. Foundation and concealer are good for about a year, while lipstick, eye shadow and blush should be replaced every two years.

Old Spices

Photo By: Faith Durand, Elana's Pantry

Most ground spices should be replaced after 12 months. A simple test? Give each one a wiff. If there's no scent, there will be no flavor. Go ahead and toss it!

Your Toothbrush

The American Dental Association recommends replacing your toothbrush once every three months for maximum brushing power.

Last Year's Holiday Cards

Photo By: ten22studio

You've enjoyed them, now it's time to let them go. Record any addresses to your phone or computer before chucking them into the recycling bin. From Kim Stoegbauer

Last Year's Calendar

Embrace the current year by recycling last year's calendar. The same goes for a dated datebook.

Unidentified Frozen Objects

Photo By: DK - House Works - Dorling Kindersley Limited

Toss any unidentifiable objects in the refrigerator or freezer.

Movies You Don't Love

Photo By: DK - House Works - Dorling Kindersley Limited

If you'd only give a film one thumb up or you wouldn't watch it again, give it away or sell at a used electronics store. And those VHS tapes? If you don't have a player, let those go, too.

Expired Food

Throw away any canned goods past their expiration date. If you discover still-good packaged food you didn't like or won't eat, donate to a local food pantry.

All done - now sit back and enjoy your clutter-free space...

Check back for more great ideas from your friends at Interior Design!

Your kind contribution will allow us to continue sharing great, no cost and cost saving ideas for your space. Click the "Donate" button below to make a contribution. Thank you!





Live well,
Yvonne