REPAIR

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Bob Vila Radio: Water Hammer
Ever hear a banging noise when you shut off faucets in the house? The problem could be what plumbers call "water hamm...
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How To: Patch Drywall
Sooner or later, most of us need to patch drywall, whether for purely cosmetic reasons—filling nail holes, for exampl...
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What Would Bob Do? Filling Nail Holes
I’ve removed some carpet and want to refinish the hardwood floors below. What should I use to fill the holes left by ...
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Bob Vila Radio: Screen Repair Made Simple
Ever notice how pesky bugs manage to find their way through even the tiniest holes in your screens?Listen to BOB VILA...
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How To: Use Wood Filler
Scarred flooring, rotted window frames, chipped furniture—common problems like these can be time-consuming and expens...
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How To: Recover a Chair
It's only a matter of time: Sooner or later, your chairs with upholstered seats are going to get worn, dirty, or date...
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What Would Bob Do? Unsticking a Double-Hung Window
My wife and I recently moved into a rental house, and we cannot seem to open the double-hung windows in the bedroom. ...
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How To: Remove a Popcorn Ceiling
For a significant chunk of the 20th century, from the 1950s through the '80s, the ceilings in many new homes—particul...
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Repair Drywall with Less Hassle
Let’s be honest. Drywall repair is not something most people look forward to. Although it’s relatively straightforwar...
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What Would Bob Do? Repairing Cracked Stucco
My house is 55 years old and still has the original stucco. On one exterior wall, there's a fine crack with paint pee...
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DIY Tales: Repairing Solid Wood Doors
If you have ever experienced solid hardwood doors, you know they can’t be beat in comparison to hollow doors. T...
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Bob Vila Radio: Fixing Chipped Stove Enamel
There’s something so crisp and clean about a kitchen with a traditional, white porcelain enamel stove. But sometimes ...
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Bob Vila Radio: Resetting a Circuit Breaker
The source of your home’s power is the breaker box, also known as the electrical panel or circuit breaker box. Whatev...
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30 Things Every Homeowner Should Know How to Do
Not every home's a fixer-upper, but all houses need occasional repairs and maintenance. You'll be able to handle those jobs like a pro if you make sure you have t...
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5 Ticking Time Bombs Every Homeowner Should Know About
There are some maintenance and repair issues that homeowners just hate to deal with—either because they take time, or...
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What Would Bob Do? Dealing with Bulging Drywall Seams
Many of the drywall seams on my 40-year-old house are bulging. It doesn't appear as if the joint tape is pulling away...
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How To: Repair a Cracked Plaster Wall
K … It feels like I’ve been working on this post for weeks. Well, ha! … because I have. Actuall...
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What Would Bob Do? Fixing Scratches on Wood Floors
I have various scratches on my wood floors. Some add character, but some are just too big and need to go away. What i...
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Top Tips for Troubleshooting Holiday Lights
If you want to avoid frustration and preserve your holiday spirit, I don't recommend that you spend time figuring out...
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How To: Repair Plaster Walls
If you have an old house with holes in the plaster, here's a quick way to patch them.  Apply your base coat (or brown...
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Back to Basics: Common Window Blind Repairs
There are many different kinds of blind repairs – In this article we will deal with the 3 most common: Restring o...
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How To: Reclaim Wood Flooring
When you're renovating, save and recycle old hardwood floorboards for patching and repairing. Using a pry bar at each...
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Don't Can Your Aluminum Siding!
Aluminum siding first became popular in the wake of World War II, when this metal, which had been so crucial to the w...
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How To: Re-Glaze a Single-Pane Window
Here's how to re-glaze those old, broken window panes. First, remove the old glazing compound with a propane torch an...
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What Would Bob Do? Cutting Drywall
I've got to remove some drywall in a room so I can nail studs behind the wall for anchoring purposes. What is the bes...
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Quick Tip: Fixing Squeaky Floors
Here's how to stop squeaks in an old house with original floors you'd rather not replace. Preservationists use an acr...
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Bob Vila Radio: Hose Repair
If your garden hose has seen better days, don’t just send it to the landfill. There are some simple, inexpensive ways...
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Quick Tip: Repairing Floorboards
Here's a way to save time and energy when repairing floorboards. Instead of drilling and chiseling damaged floorboard...
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How To: Remove Plaster
Here's how to remove old plaster when starting a remodeling project.  Have professionals remove any old electrical co...
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Quick Tip: Sawdust Grout
It can be easy to patch cracks in an old wood floor or grout a new wood block floor. Here's how. First, make a mixtur...
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The Complete Illustrated Guide to Unclogging a Drain
Stop—don't panic! You, too, can unclog that drain with these easy steps for banishing the backed-up sink and toilet.
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How To: Refinish Rusty Patio Furniture
Don't throw out that rusty garden furniture. Restoring it can be a great weekend project. Use a wire brush or sandpap...
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How To: Replace Damaged Tile
Here's a way to replace damaged ceramic tile.  Remove the grout with a grout saw. Crack the tile with a hammer and co...
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How To: Restore Brass Hardware
Here's how to restore the missing brass hardware from an antique door.  The "ghost" image of original brass hardware ...
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Top Tips for Troubleshooting Low Water Pressure
Low water pressure can be a real annoyance—the shower subsides to a trickle, the washing machine takes eons to fill, ...
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Easy Home Fixes with Petroleum Jelly
In our home, there’s always something that needs fixing. If it’s a big enough problem, I usually get right o...
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How To: Repoint Brick Walls
Brick houses are hard to damage. Anyone familiar with The Three Little Pigs knows that. Inevitably, however, there co...
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Should You Replace or Repair Your Roof?
Making good decisions is the key to minimizing near- and long-term costs related to any home improvement. This is esp...
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Care and Repair of Outdoor Furniture
When choosing outdoor furniture for a garden room, outdoor kitchen, or multi-level deck, some consumers prefer qualit...
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Quick Tip: DIY Mold Removal
Can You Tackle Mold Removal on Your Own?Mold problems are present in about 4 out of 10 American homes. With the often...
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How To: Fix a Running Toilet
Nowadays, we don’t give much thought to our toilets, but there was a time when answering nature's call involved such ...
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How To: Repair a Leaky Faucet
The faucet—whether it's in the kitchen, bathroom, or behind the bar—acts like a mini dam, holding back a pressurized ...
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Finally, a Sure-Fire Cure for the Sagging Closet Pole
My wife and I recently reorganized our bedroom closet and added several new accessories, including a double rod hange...
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My House Contains Asbestos: Now What?
Many older houses incorporate construction materials that contain asbestos. Usually its presence is uncovered during ...
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Bob Vila Radio: Unclogging a Toilet
You’re in the middle of a party, enteraining a houseful of guests, and the toilet acts up. Are you ready to spring in...
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How To: Fix a Sagging Door
Do you have something around your home that’s been sorta broken but not quite broken enough to fix it yet? For us,...
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The 7 Best Products for Patching Wood
Sometimes it’s nail holes and sometimes it’s rotten wood, but your projects will often require you to patch ...
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How To: Replace Broken Glass in Old Windows
Whether it’s an errant baseball or a tropical storm, windows are bound to break on occasion. Before you call in a...
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How To: Restore Cabinet Finishes
Your kitchen gets a lot of use. So it doesn't take long to begin seeing signs of wear and tear on wood cabinets. Soon...
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Repairing a Retaining Wall
Walls, normally thought of as interior design elements, are useful in landscaping, too. A landscaping wall can be fre...
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Bob Vila Radio: Patching Drywall
Drywall has been the wall finishing material of choice for most of a century, because it’s so easy to install and fin...
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Bob Vila Radio: Squeaky Floors
A squeaky floor is easier to fix if it’s a floor that you can access from below. Listen to BOB VILA ON SQUEAKY FLOORS...
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Bob Vila Radio: Water Spots
Water spots on ceilings and walls aren’t just unsightly--they can be a symptom of a much bigger problem that needs at...
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Bob Vila Radio: Brick Repairs
Despite what the three little pigs might say, even the hardiest of brick buildings will require repair and restoratio...
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Quick Tip: Unclog a Toilet
We all know that life would be very different without that wonder of modern science: the toilet. But when it acts up,...
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How To: Quiet Loud Pipes
What Causes the Clanging?Water hammer is a common cause of banging pipes. In plumbing where water pressure is high, s...
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Bob Vila Radio: Removing Old Shingles
Of all the siding materials you could use on your home, cedar shingles are one of the most attractive and long lastin...
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Bob Vila Radio: Fixing a Slow Drain
Grace tweets, “The bathroom sink in my 1890s Victorian is draining really slowly. What’s the best way to get things f...
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Quick Tip: Fixing a Clogged Drain
Be Gentle on Old Drains A partial clog can be cleared by cleaning out the drainpipe. Older plumbing can be damaged by...
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How To: Dry a Wet Basement
A wet basement can be obvious—water trickling across the floor or standing several inches deep at the base of the sta...
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Quick Tip: Roof Repair or Replacement
The cost of re-roofing is something no one wants to think about, but every roof—at some point—will need to be repaire...
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Broken Roof Tiles: An Easy Fix?
It's a complete mystery to me how this could have happened to my roof in Florida. There are no palm trees around to d...
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How To: Unclog a Clogged Drain
Some friends of mine moved into a new house and had a couple of issues with their bathroom. The sink drain was a litt...
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How To: Unclog a Sink Drain
Put the phone down! There's no need to call the plumber. In only six simple steps, you can unclog a drain that no longer flows as freely as it once did.
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How To: Patch Plaster Walls
Finishing a new wall or room with plaster or joint compound takes practice. If you have no experience with plaster or...
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Leaky Roof? Some Repair Tips
[bobsays_inset]Asphalt shingles are the most popular roofing material for homes today, accounting for nearly 70% of d...
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Quick Tip: Patching Damaged Drywall
The Virtues of Drywall Drywall has been the wall finishing material of choice for most of a century because it’s so e...
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How To: Replace a Door Closer
The door closer on my front porch—that mechanical cylindrical device that keeps the door from flying open too far and...
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Tour a Salvaged Home with the Latest Green Technologies
Architect Mary Kennedy and Bob tour her Georgian Colonial family home in Westchester County, NY. After a flood ruined the house, the challenge was to salvage and ...
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Installing Wood Shingle Siding
Bob works with contractor Bob Ryley and carpenter Chris Clark installing new wood-shingle siding.
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Installing Copper-Lined Gutters
Carpenters Bob Ryley and Danny Ruffini and copper-work specialist Fred Mitchell install custom fabricated copper-lined wood gutters on Bob's home.
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Brick Chimney Repair
Bob meets with Ed and Lisa Zywusko, a husband-and-wife masonry team, and sees how they are going to refurbish the old brick chimney.
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Installing Tumbled Marble Tile in the Shower
Tile is installed in the master bathroom’s shower area. A flashback reviews the waterproofing work that was done to prevent leaks.
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Reworking the Existing Plumbing and Replacing Brass Water Pipes with PEX Tubing
Bob reviews the work done on the existing plumbing in the basement and the replacement of obsolete brass water pipes.
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Keep Water Out of the Basement
Basement drainage systems are installed to control moisture and humidity and to eliminate rot and mildew.
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Installing and Explaining a Basement HVAC System
Bob meets with the installer of the new HVAC system to discuss how it filters air and reduces energy costs.
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Touring a Neighborhood in Melrose
Bob meets with a local real estate broker and with homeowner Sarah Monzon, whose basement will be finished to create additional family space.
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Fixing a Rotted Deck and Columns on the Porch
Carpenters replace a rotted deck, and a rotted porch column is reconstructed with concrete.
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Replacing Sill, Repelling Insects and Rot, and Installing Sliding Doors With Custom Trim Molding
Damaged sill is replaced, the house is protected against insects and rot, and sliding doors with custom trim molding are installed.
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Basement Remodeling Update and Installing Subfloor to Prevent Water Damage
Bob discusses the installation of a plastic subfloor to prevent water damage and the selection of a basement dehumidifier.
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Discussing Hurricane Resistant Building and Stem Wall Construction
Bob meets with FLASH—Federal Alliance for Safe Housing and FEMA—Federal Emergency Management Agency, to learn how homeowners can protect their homes from damaging...
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Minton Tile Repair in New York's Central Park
Bob visits the Bethesda Terrace in Central Park with Doug Blonsky of the Central Park Conservancy.
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Antique Brick Work at the Burtch-Udall House and Sumner Mansion
Bob and Professor Tom Visser (UVM) visit the Burtch-Udall house in Quechee, VT, and the nearby Sumner Mansion-- suitable locales for a running discussion on prope...
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Patching With Plaster
Chris Borovka (from US Gypsum) joins Bob to explain about patching with plaster.
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Hurricane-, Flood-, and Earthquake-Resistant Building
Bob meets with Beth Judge (of Clemson University) to review hazard-resistant building techniques at a demonstration house used to teach builders and architects in...
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Oak and Herringbone Floor Repair
Bob meets with preservationist Fred Ecker to go over the process of making repairs to the floors.
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Final Tour of the Restored "Bench" Porch House
Bob tours the finished house, the fifth in the Elmwood neighborhood project. Better grading and gutters have been added to prevent future water damage.
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Framing Begins on the Miami Home
As part of a Miami kitchen renovation, Bob frames a partition wall made to resemble a banana leaf. He also pours concrete to patch a floor.
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Exterior Paint Stripping and Priming
Bob examines the exterior of the home, where several layers of paint are removed, and contractor Cortney Lofton explains the techniques and tools used to restore ...
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Wood Floor Repair
Bob and homeowner Gavin repair and refinish a 75-year-old oak floor. Because the new patch floor panels have a different thickness from the original, a belt sande...
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Plaster Cornice Reconstruction
Bob surveys the plaster cornice in the project home. Water damage has ruined a large section and much of the remaining plaster needs repair. Bob and restoration c...
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Adding Detail to the Plaster Cornice
Bob observers the expert plasterer add detail to the cornice, which is under reconstruction due to water damage.
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Shower Stall Installation
Bob joins the plumber as he installs a shower stall in the kids' bathroom. After drilling the drain hole, the plumber demonstrates how to properly attach a metal ...
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Surveying the Deck Damage
Bob and the architect survey the problem areas of the home and eventually focus on the decaying deck.
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Hooking Up the Refrigerator Ice Maker
Bob has finished wiring the Colonial-style light fixture in the entryway and, back in the kitchen, the refrigerator ice maker is hooked up.
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Repairing a Broken Window Pane
Bob helps general contractor Ron Gan demonstrate how to repair a broken window pane the old-fashioned way.
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Attic and Basement
The tour of the project house continues up into the attic and down into the basement. Bob and general contractor Ron Gan discuss the necessary repairs and desired...
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Removing the Roof
The roofing crew strips several ancient layers of old roofing off the project house, leaving a section open for the installation of the new dormer.
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Restoring Old Windows
Ryan Pirro (from RestorationWindows.com) discusses refurbishing old windows with solid-bronze sash chains, new parting beads, and spring-bronze weather stripping ...
Unless you live in a very warm climate, your lemon tree should be brought indoors in the winter and then returned outdoors... Reused steel windows create an eye-catching splashguard in this walk-in shower. The vintage factory windows bring an inter... A galvanized steel tub is a surprising but charming fixture in this bright and breezy screened patio. It's perfect for was... If you're not crazy about the idea of commingling plants and pool, this modern variation may be more to your liking. The s... Yes, a freestanding garage can become its own tiny house. Artist Michelle de la Vega has all the comforts of a modern resi... If you lack plumbing skills but have a good sturdy tree, here's the easiest outdoor shower solution of all: Simply attach... Pursue what's known as the stack effect. To achieve it, open the windows on both the upper and lower floors, and as warm a... How do you like this smart use for an old bottle? Clamp an empty wine bottle to a fence or wall near your outdoor deck or ... Simple and striking, a couple of pieces of "lovingly used" furniture creates a special kind of charm. A weathered chair fo... Twine lanterns add pops of crafty—but sophisticated—flair to any outdoor setting. Wrap glue-soaked twine around a balloon ... When securely fastened to a tree or the ceiling of a porch, a pallet and some cushioning make the ideal place to lounge. V... Incorporate nature into your lighting scheme by securing a dead tree in a concrete mold and draping your pendant lamp from... For the cost of a can of exterior paint , you can totally transform your porch. Paint the floor a hue that complements yo... In this urban apartment, a standard-issue patio became a serene and green perch by replacing the typical concrete with gro... This garden shed has been decked out to the nines. Designer Orla Kiely created the intimate home for a flower trade show, ...
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