MILDEWY VINYL SHOWER-CURTAIN LINER
Fix it: Wash in the machine (on a short cycle) with some old towels, using hot water and bleach.
Keep it longer: Leave the bathroom door or a window open — and/or a ventilation fan turned on — for 20 minutes post-shower.
KNIFE WITH KNICKED BLADE
Fix it: Check stores like Williams-Sonoma or Sur La Table to see when a knife expert who can grind down the edge will visit.
Keep it longer: Use a block, a drawer insert, or a blade sheath to protect it. Our favorite brands, Bisbell (bisbellusa.com) and Lamson & Goodnow (lamsonsharp.com), sell options for from $5 to $25.
SAGGY SEAT CUSHION
Fix it: If the upholstery is still in good shape, remove the foam insert and take it to a Jo-Ann Fabric & Craft Store to have a replacement cut to fit; a three-square-foot, five-inch-thick cushion will cost about $70.
Keep it longer:Flip cushions every few months to help them wear evenly.
WORN AND WOBBLY WOOD FURNITURE
Fix it: The easiest way to save a wiggly wooden chair leg: Stick in a toothpick where the leg meets the seat, then simply break it off. For scratches, try GHRI-tested Guardsman wood touch-up markers ($5, guardsman.com).
Keep it longer: Whether with a toothpick or with nails, support a loose chair leg sooner rather than later; if you keep the piece in use as is, you risk breaking it.
ONE THING YOU REALLY SHOULD REPLACE
A literal pain in the neck — that's what a worn-out pillow can give you. To tell whether to toss yours, give it the "break test": For a fiberfill or down- or feather-filled pillow, fold it in half with a heavy book on top. If the pillow pops back so it's flat, keep it. If it stays folded in half, it's "broken" — either use the filling to stuff smaller pillows or chuck it.
Before You Throw It Out -- These businesses will repurpose well-used items:
Sure, they take old towels and blankets, but did you know most need pillows, pillowcases, bathroom rugs, and T-shirts, too?
They accept used household items like pillows, shower curtains, linens, and furniture, which are resold to fund job-training programs.
HABITAT FOR HUMANITY(habitat.org)
Donate extra paint, tile, and lumber as well as used furniture, cabinets, and fixtures to help a family in need of housing.
SMART(Secondary Materials and Recycled Textiles; smartasn.org)
This trade association refers you to local members that accept most textiles (including rugs and towels), which can be recycled into, say, home insulation or carpet padding.
house decorating & home décor ideas
The client was a “young, spunky” professional in medical school, explained designer Megan Dunkmann of the Cure Design Group. Dunkmann was tasked with designing a loft that would be bright and fun but still practical for everyday living.
Beautiful lighting should never be limited to the interior of your living space.
A stylish selection of rooms from our archives with one thing in common: plenty of purple. Curated by Architectural Digest
Why spend a lot of money getting your home décor ready for late summer? Here are 18 quick and easy DIY ideas that will look pretty at any party and celebrate the season.
A definitive ranking of the prolific series' best houses. Did your favorites make the list?
Just outside Miami, Dee and Tommy Hilfiger team up with designer Martyn Lawrence Bullard on a polychrome palace for vibrant art and groovy-chic furnishings.
Isaac Mizrahi’s Greenwich Village home channels the designer’s trademark flair, its airy rooms accented with a lively mix of colorful artwork and urbane antiques.
Creating a successful mix of patterns results in a balanced and beautiful room, but it takes a nimble hand. Too many patterns and the room is overdone; too little and the room is bland. It is more than just mixing and matching colors. The trick is to find just the right combination of scale and design to create the perfect effect.
A newlywed couple contacted designer Abbe Fenimore of Studio Ten 25 because they wanted some style injected into their brand-new home. Fenimore enhanced the builder-grade features to create one-of-a-kind interiors that combine the styles of both husband and wife.
The next time you crave a movie night, skip the local cinema and step into your backyard instead.
Keep bugs away from your next summer soiree with the help of natural bug repellents.
Even selfies and feet photos can be inspiring when snapped in an irresistible outdoor setting.