Keeping a cool house on hot days

Question: What are some active and passive ways to keep your house cool in the summer?

As temperatures rise during the summer months, keeping cool becomes a priority. Air conditioning is ideal, but not all homes have it. When my former house was being building in the late 80’s, we added central air with multiple zones and the builder thought we were crazy. Crazy or not, it is a necessity in my life and well worth the investment. In my new house, which is 3 levels with one zone, I’m getting adjusted and finding ways to cool my house. Here a few of my tips followed by shared tips from readers.

Read more

Reclaimed Wood Adds Texture and Warmth to Walls

A few years ago I featured Stikwood in this newspaper column after seeing the product at the Architectural Digest Home and Design Show. In a high-tech world, people are craving more natural elements inside. Stikwood makes the high-design trend of bringing the outside in more accessible.  Read more

A stager preps her house for sale

As I sit here wondering what to write about, I think of change and how so many fear change. The one thing that is constant is change. I’ve worked with a few clients over the years that have a hard time with change. One client, during a staging consultation, had an issue with moving a chair away from the fireplace. “It has always been there”, they said. I explained how it was blocking the view to the fireplace and how we are selling the house and its beautiful architectural feature is hidden behind a chair upon entry into the space and in photos. The chair stayed put and the house lingered on the market for a very long period of time. The energy was blocked.

Read more

Plant a seed and lighten up

Inspired by The Beekman 1802: Boys A Seat at the Table book I thought, “Why not host an open house showcasing the local artisans featured in my last column?” It was during one of my busiest weeks. My house wasn’t decorated except for a few Poinsettias. No time to make appetizers or signature cocktails. It was a run to the store for food to thrown on my table and felt like a deer caught in the headlights. This was not my plan.

What did I learn? It didn’t matter. Everyone had a great time, friends brought food and drinks and the vendors sold merchandise. Everyone was relaxed but me. It was a great turnout. My new mantra is ‘lighten up’. Life is hectic but if you are spending it with people whose company you enjoy, that is all that matters.

Read more

Shop small for the holidays

As much as I love the convenience of shopping online, I love to support local artisans and small independent business owners. Some have storefronts, studios, are web based or by appointment only.

Read more

Consign For A Cause

Before I write about a consignment shop I need to confess, I don’t do consignment shops. They seem to turn me off for various reasons. That is no longer the case with a gem of a store, actually two stores located in Cornwall Plaza in Cornwall, New York.

Read more