Page 1

35 Projects TM

Storage Furniture Wall Art Textiles Build a Desk


Paint a Lamp

Make a Shelf

Turn Box e s into Draw e rs

Fall 2013

Vol. 20 / Issue 3 Display until Oct. 7 $4.99 U.S.

BHG SIP Purple Checkout

78 Clever Ideas

Under $20

Fast Kitchen Facelifts Try a New Technique: Block Printing

on our radar

stuff we love

Whether you spend autumn savoring your garden’s bounty, curling up with a crafts project, or fluffing your nest, these products bring the comfy as days get cooler. producers CHELSEA EVERS & BRIAN KRAMER photographs MARTY BALDWIN words CHELSEA EVERS

Snuggle time No matter your skill level or style, you can find a pillow kit that includes everything you need to create a custom cushion. Starting at $18. From top to bottom: • Pillow stencils • Felt rosette pillows • Embroidered map pillow • Colorable critters • Needlepoint pillows • Postcard pillow

Do It Yourself Fall 2013


stu we love




3 28 Do It Yourself

Fall 2013

1. Bead the way

2. Dig in

3. Easy freezy

4. Print panache

String together your own custom bracelets, necklaces, or key chains with these geometric beads and colorful cords. Choose from a treasure trove of handpainted pastel, neon, metallic, or patterned wooden beads in a variety of shapes and sizes. $29 for 30 beads;

Plant new Better Homes and GardensÂŽ Drumline tulip bulbs this fall and enjoy bold, brilliant red blooms next May. The 12-inch trowel features depth markings on its stainless-steel blade to help you dig smarter. $19 for a dozen bulbs; trowel, $23;

These plastic freezer jars are perfect for preserving jams and salsas without investing in canning supplies. The dishwasher-safe jars from Ball are stackable, leakproof, and BPA-free. $5 for three 8-ounce or two 16-ounce jars;

Artist Meagan Lewis shares her favorite (and super-easy) ways to carve handmade rubber stamps for wood, fabric, and paper projects. Her new book Put Your Stamp On It abounds with ideas for one-ofa-kind gift wrap, tea towels, aprons, and other accessories. $20;

6 5 7

8 5. Clean lines

6. Insta-book

Ideal for just-primed or painted walls, this low-adhesion painter’s tape removes cleanly from delicate surfaces up to 60 days after application. Frogtape’s PaintBlock technology gels to seal edges, resulting in sharp lines and fewer touch-ups. $7;

Digital memories become tangible when published in your own photo book. Choose a size and layout, upload your fave Instagram photos, and add text. The softcover albums are printed on thick, 100-percent-recycled paper. Starting at $13;


7. All grown up

8. Magic wand

Start your own new plants by clipping off a stem and submerging in water to form roots. The notched lid on the soilless Rootcup protects plants from the sun and encourages root growth until your lil’ darlings are ready to move into soil. $14;

Attach this extendable cleaning tool to a garden hose and spray leaves and other debris from gutters, sidewalks, and driveways with ease. The telescoping wand, ergonomic grip, and hooked nozzle mean less work for tired arms. $20;

9. Pattern play Press washi tape onto glass, plastic, paper, or metal—then remove and reposition it as you please. Each roll includes 10 yards of paper tape available in a variety of widths and patterns. $3 per roll; queenandcompany .com

Do It Yourself Fall 2013


stuff we love




30 Do It Yourself

Fall 2013

10. Fashion fix

11. That '70s label

12. Eco-energy

Blogger Jenni Radosevich shows you how to transform basic garments and thrift store finds into a runwayworthy wardrobe. I Spy DIY Style details 30 projects including spiked flats, studded button-downs, and feather earrings. $22;

A soft-grip handle and improved cutting feature update this classic embossing label maker. The batteryfree tool is compatible with a colorful array of Dymo 3⁄8 -inch plastic embossing tapes. $13;

This intuitive thermostat learns your habits and automatically adjusts your home’s temperature when you’re at work or asleep. Revise the programmed schedule using your computer or smartphone and save up to 20 percent on energy bills. $249;

13 13. Toe toy

Bring back childhood memories with a Munkybuns sock monkey in dozens of funky patterns. Each kit comes with presewn appendages and coordinating thread and eye buttons. Assemble, stuff, and adore. $13; munkybunssocktoys




16 14. Stop the slop Instead of messing up a paintbrush for a small job, fill these felt-tipped tubes using the included pump and squeeze only what you need. Cap and store tubes for quick touch-ups, or wash and refill them for future projects. Available in two sizes. $5–$7;

15. That’s a wrap Skip the pricey print shop and make your own gallery-style canvas art with this kit. Print an image onto the included canvas paper, mount it to the adhesive-lined frame, fold the corners, and snap into place. $30 for kit to create three 8×10-inch pieces;

16. Round here Ideal for any crafter, circular looms are an easy way to work up hats, sweaters, scarves, and other woolen accessories. The kit includes four sizes of looms, plus a hook, pick tool, and zippered carrying case. $16;

17. Heavy duty Tackle home repairs, upholstery, and craft projects with the TruTac hand stapler. The ergonomic handle is easy to squeeze and promises fewer misfires and greater precision than standard staplers. $15;

Better Homes and Gardens Special Interest Publications


50 Projects TM

Ready, Set, Refresh 135 Projects for Outside and In

St enc il a Pi llow

Summer 2013 Vol. 20 / Issue 2 Display until July 8 $4.99 U.S.

BHG SIP Orange Checkout

Under $20

Sew a Floor Cushion

Embellish a Table

Smart DIY Storage for Every Room Creative Container Gardens

stuff we love

on our radar

Clever kits, smart supplies, and feel-good finishing touches help you accomplish everything on your summer to-do list—or just savor a little more fun in the sun. producers CHELSEA EVERS & BRIAN KRAMER photographs JAY WILDE & KRITSADA words CHELSEA EVERS

Ride the color wave Skip vats of messy dye and spray your way to perky color with Tumble Dye, bold-hue colorants that you can spritz, spatter, paint, or pour directly onto prewashed cotton. Best of all, no washing required—simply iron or throw in the dryer to permanently heat-set your design. $3 per 2-ounce bottle;

Do It Yourself Summer 2013


stuff we love




4 20 Do It Yourself

Summer 2013

1. Scrap saver

2. Picture this

3. Flex appeal

4. Fine twine

This stoneware compost container boasts an outer sleeve that cleverly conceals biodegradable bags for easier disposal. Available in green, blue, and orange, the container also includes a lid with replaceable charcoal filter for odorfree composting. $30;

Combine your own images and text in sumptuously printed MILK photo books, now featuring classic Moleskine details. Online tools let you assemble your book with the help of friends and family. $50 for a 20page book; milkbooks .com/moleskine

Marinate, grill, and serve meat and vegetables in a snap with FireWire cable skewers that bend to fit in bowls or bags of marinade and then easily contort to maximize space on your grill. They’re dishwasher-safe for fast cleanup. $20 for a set of four;

This collection of vibrant string will make gardeners and crafters smile. Each spool contains 50 feet of biodegradable jute, providing plenty of length for tying plants, wrapping gifts, or fashioning other colorful creations. $10 for an eight-spool pack;




6 5. Getting snippy

6. Take the cake

7. Make a mark

8. Drink up

Keep the essentials close with the Tomo Swiss Army Knife, which sports a blade, nail file, nail cleaner, and scissors inside a sleek key-chain case. Available in seven colors, the pocket knife can be personalized with engravings on both sides. $24;

Add a personal touch to summer nuptials by painting or commissioning a oneof-kind cake topper. The DIY kit includes four blank toppers, two brushes, five paint colors, and a protective top coat. $18 for DIY kit; commissioned toppers start at $100;

Change your decor as often as you please with pots coated in blackboard paint. (We used chalk markers for our detailed design.) Available in 4-, 6-, and 8-inch sizes, these containers can host succulents, herbs, or houseplants. Starting at $6;

Enjoy great-tasting water without sacrificing undersink space. The Filtrete single-stage water filtration system does the work of a traditional two-stage system at a fraction of the cost. The kit includes faucet, filter, mounting hardware, tubing, and assorted adapters. $100;

Do It Yourself Summer 2013


stuff we love

9 11

10 9. Reeling it in 10. Fast flooring Take advantage of a sunny day by drying laundry on an oldschool clothesline. The kit includes a plasticcoated cable, a pair of rustproof zinc pulleys, mounting hardware, and a ratcheting tightener. $30 for a 25-foot kit;

22 Do It Yourself

Summer 2013

Made from recycled tires, these molded tiles can be installed in seconds on any flat surface and easily moved or reconfigured. Lay them out as a patio or path, trim to size, and use a hammer to secure with clips. $32 for a fourpack of tiles;

12 11. Wash away

12. Peel ’n’ stick

13. Pattern play

This do-it-all rolling bucket will make the car nut in your life swoon. The lower grille filters out debris, while a molded-in measuring cup provides precise soap dispensing. A snap-on lid and heavy-duty casters facilitate transport. $45;

Removable wallpaper is perfect if you rent—or just like to change your mind often. Affix these vinyl sheets again and again without messy primers or glue. Available in 15 fresh designs, each roll measures 26×94 inches. $148 for two rolls;

The possibilities are limitless with these recycled-paper pads. Jot notes on the plain side, then use the printed sides to create gift cards, hang tags, labels, scrapbook spreads, or frameworthy collages. $7 for a 48-sheet pad;

13 14

14. Rainmaker Why buy a pricey rain barrel when you can make one yourself? Combine your own barrel or plastic drum with this simple kit and start harvesting summer showers. The kit includes hole saws, flexible diverter, spigot, connection hose, and winter hole cover. $50;

D IY Storage

storage steals words CHELSEA EVERS

Do It Yourself Summer 2013


DIY Storage

work spaces 1

Create a hub for memos, office supplies, and important papers. Use spray adhesive to cover cork squares with fabric. Hang the squares in a grid with pegboard and dry-erase boards.

2 Craft a simple bookend from scrap fabric. Stitch scraps into a rectangle, leaving one side open. Fill with dry beans or sand, then stitch tightly shut. Set the beanbag on end to keep books upright, or use as an offbeat paperweight.


4 Miniature metal pails are the perfect size for storing laundry supplies. Give pails a subtle upgrade by having a professional powder-coat them in bright colors.

5 Put some fun into function. Make labels to organize laundry essentials. Cut ribbon long enough to fit around a container, then tightly wrap and secure with a dot of hot glue. Attach stick-on metal letters to the ribbon.


D IY Storage

6 Employ spare space in a walk-in closet when you hang a handled basket from cup hooks beneath a cabinet or shelf. Store swimwear, scarves, hats, or accessories inside and label accordingly.


Mobilize your mudroom by adding casters to crates, bins, and ottomans. Wheel bins in and out of a nearby closet as needed for shoes, sports gear, or winter duds (see page 29).


Ensure footwear stays in pairs when you dedicate cubbies for sneakers in an old mail sorter. Give each family member a labeled shelf or two to prevent shoe pileups inside the door.

9 Lack a dedicated entry? Get creative with cast-off furniture. Here, old dresser drawers are painted and lined with patterned paper, then hung vertically to store knickknacks and gear without wasting floor space.


Do It Yourself Summer 2013


DIY Storage

bathrooms 11

Convert a stool into a beauty zone for supplies you don’t use daily. Tack folded fabric inside the lid to form pockets for combs and hair clips. Sort larger tools and styling products into plastic bins below.

12 Double bath counter space with unlikely supplies from the kitchen. Build a two-tier tray from a salad plate, candlestick, and dinner plate, secured with quick-drying ceramic glue. Fill with everyday primping essentials.

13 Repurpose an old dresser drawer. Back it with pretty paper, add a painted plywood shelf, then hang it vertically on a bathroom wall with sawtooth hooks.

14 Make these simple shelves by tracing five sides of a wooden cube onto a sheet of wallpaper. Cut out. Using wallpaper glue, adhere the paper to the cube, using a brayer to smooth. Hang in sets for a graphic look.



D IY Storage


Add wall storage to kids’ rooms with a doubleduty shelf. Attach ribbon to frames and hang art projects from coat hooks.

17 Fashion a clever bedside haven without wasting floor space. Start with a wall-mount nightstand, then hang fabric-covered cork and magnet boards. Attach memorabilia and magnetic organizers for eyeglasses and pens.




Keep kids’ clothing organized with this in-an-afternoon project. Coat dresser drawers in different colors of chalkboard paint, then label drawers according to contents.

Spray-paint an old metal suitcase, then attach casters to the underside. Add a label and slide under a bed or nightstand to provide stylish storage for bedding, shoes, or out-of-season clothes.

Do It Yourself Summer 2013


DIY Storage

living rooms 21

Scour flea markets and antiques stores for storage containers, then build basic boxes around each piece. connect the boxes with screws. Secure taller units to wall studs for safety. 23

22 Turn cluttered media cabinets into cohesive storage units. Use spray adhesive to cover media boxes and binders with fabric. Organize shelf contents into the containers. Add numbered tags or cardstock labels to ID contents.


Line a basket with tea towels. Use a grommet tool to insert grommets into the corners of the towels, then tie with ribbon.

25 Build a storage-savvy coffee table by topping vintage produce bins with an old door. Screw the unit to a plywood base. Affix casters. Add medium-density fiberboard shelves.

34 Do It Yourself

Summer 2013


DIY Storage

26 After a grocery trip, sort purchases by meal. Place ingredients in a see-through container, labeling with an index card and binder clip or clothespin. When it’s time to cook, simply remove the basket from the pantry. Refill and relabel as needed.


Stack and layer chopsticks to form a fun fruit basket. Adhere the pieces at each end with dots of superglue, then cut a plywood sheet to size and attach it with additional superglue to form a base.

29 Install slide-out cutting boards in cabinets. Before you secure them, use a jigsaw to cut a hole in each board just smaller than the lip of a basket. Fit the basket inside, and it’s ready to store or serve.


36 Do It Yourself

Summer 2013


Upcycle an egg carton as a drawer organizer. Sort tiny items in the base, and store scissors and writing utensils in the lid. Silicone baking cups are ideal for holding other loose goods.

just kidding Transform children’s cherished crafts into functional works of art with these clever repurposing projects. projects JODI MENSING HARRIS photographs STEVEN MCDONALD words CHELSEA EVERS

See our video! Learn how to iron on a transfer image at


All ironed out ABOVE: Personalize your child’s bedroom with whimsical crafts such as a one-of-a-kind pillowcase and a headoard pennant. To create the pennant, cut triangles from construction paper (enlist your kid’s help to decorate it first if you prefer), then use double-stick tape to stick them back-to-back over a length of fishing line. To make the pillowcase, scan your child’s favorite painting or drawing and print the art on ink-jet iron-on paper. (Check the package to be sure the paper works with your fabric. Some transfer paper works better on light or dark fabrics.) Iron the sheet onto a blank pillowcase (a) following package instructions.

Do It Yourself Summer 2013



72 Do It Yourself

Summer 2013

Tiled style ABOVE: Can’t choose just one of your child’s craft projects to show off? Put them all on display in a poster frame. Scan art pieces, then import them into an image-editing program (a). Crop and shrink art to desired size, then place the images in a gridded layout. Take the file to a print shop and request a poster-size print to frame and hang. Scan art each year and replace the prints to create a playful annual keepsake.


That’s a wrap LEFT: Kids’ crafts can make great gift embellishments for friends and family. Use large-scale artwork to create custom wrapping paper, then cut smaller drawings into personalized gift tags. Mount other two-dimensional projects (a) on scrapbooking paper, then tape them to gift bags to create one-of-a-kind appliqués recipients can treasure.

a Magnetic attraction RIGHT: Stick your lists and photos in

style with do-it-yourself magnets. Purchase small wooden disks from a crafts store, then paint them in bright colors. Let dry. Cut circles from artwork (a), then use gel glue to secure the paper to the disks. Spray with several coats of polyacrylic gloss sealer, and use superglue to affix magnets to the back. Display magnets on the fridge or any magnetic surface, and let kids admire their handiwork.

Painterly profile


BELOW: Combine kiddos’ abstract paintings with this silhouette technique. Snap a photo of your child’s profile (it works best against a plain background, like a wall or sheet). Using plain paper, print the photo in a size smaller than the artwork you wish to feature. Roughly trace around the outside of your child’s head on the photo with a black marker. Lay a sheet of paper over the photo, and trace a clean outline using a black marker. Place this paper over a sheet of thick white watercolor paper. Holding the papers up to a brightly lit window, trace the silhouette using a pencil. Then cut the shape from the watercolor paper using a crafts knife or fine-tip scissors; start cutting at the center and pay close attention to details such as hair, lips, and eyelashes. Flip the sheet over (or erase all pencil marks) and label the bottom with your child’s name and age. Mount it to the painting with spray adhesive or double-stick tape, then frame.



Transfer-mation ABOVE: Create your own custom decor with water-slide decals,


which make it possible to transfer art to any wooden object. Scan your child’s drawing or painting into an image-editing program, then scale it to your desired size. Print the art onto ink-jet decal paper (find it at crafts stores or online) and soak in water until the backing starts to peel away and the paper begins to curl. In a well-ventilated space, coat wood with turpentine (a). While the turpentine is still wet, slide the decal onto the surface. When you’re satisfied with placement (b), peel the backing away to reveal the translucent decal. Let it dry for several hours until the decal paper turns white again, then paint it with a coat of oil-base polyurethane (c), which will cause the decal to again become transparent. Let it dry thoroughly, then enjoy your new three-dimensional artwork. For Resources see page 107.

Do It Yourself Summer 2013



fall in

with your home again


BUDGETFRIENDLY MAKEOVERS get one done this weekend! the best decor ideas


FOR $500 (OR LESS)

paint palettes to brighten any room in your house

Summer 2013

$5.99 U.S.

Display until Aug. 26

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(that will change your life)

design equation In small spaces, use vertical storage. A laundry

nook gets a high-style storage makeover thanks to three floating metal shelves, which store detergent, ironing supplies, stain treatment kits, and cleaning solvents. Extra linens on the top shelf are ready for last-minute guests. A field of subway tile gives the space a finished look, while a granite work surface tops the front-load appliances.


clothes moving with the Fresh Spin cycle, which tumbles clothes periodically postwash. Performance series front-load washer and high-efficiency electric steam dryer, from $849 each, Maytag;





20 refresh summer 2013

WALL SHELF Display trinkets,

hang keys, and store accessories on this triple-duty piece. Southport mirrored shelf with hooks, $110, Piper Classics;

BASKET Wire mesh makes it easy to see and retrieve contents. White mesh bin, $17, The Container Store; TOWELS Better Homes and Gardens extraabsorbent bath towels in Sea Glass, $6, hand towel, $5, Walmart; DECAL Available in a variety

of colors, these self-adhesive letters are easy to remove. $15, Kreative Corner Designs;

BASKET Machine-washable cotton

SHELF Brackets cover edges so shelves can be cut to size for small spaces. Ekby Mossby shelf, $40, IKEA;


Steam-cleaning technology makes stain removal a snap. Extracapacity steam washer and ultralarge-capacity steam dryer, from $899 each, LG Electronics;

Corinthian White (162), Benjamin Moore & Co.;

liners mean spills are nothing to worry about. Natural lined Makati baskets, $30, The Container Store;

TOWELS Better Homes and Gardens extra-absorbent hand towels in Green Palm and Fresh Ivory, $5, Walmart;

BOOKCASE At 2 feet wide,

this shelf nestles easily in a small space. Nantucket two-shelf bookcase, $90, Rosenberry Rooms;

Create a built-in look for less. Two short bookcases work together to support a countertop above front-loading appliances. Baskets on shelves flanking the washer and dryer hold detergent and cleaning supplies, while a rug below brings comfort to the cold utility area. A mirrored shelf provides a touch of personality to the hardworking space with a display of collectibles. refresh summer 2013 21

Out of sight, out of mind.

These sliding doors make it easy to hide dirty laundry, plus they serve as a space for reminders, schedules, and doodles, thanks to an application of chalkboard paint. Cabinets inside the laundry room provide ample storage for washing supplies, pantry overflow, and even seasonal decor, while sleek cabinet pulls give the space a modern look.

Nacho Cheese (2018-40), Benjamin Moore & Co.;


trolley wheels glide inside this box rail for a sleek sliding door. $629, Real Sliding Hardware;

RUG Cheery

stripes and a reversible pattern make a welcoming laundry room addition. Zanzibar Ticking cotton rug, $104, Dash & Albert Rug Co.;

WASHER & DRYER The intuitive 6th Sense technology works to provide just the right amount of water, saving you money. Cabrio top-load washer and Cabrio high-eďŹƒciency electric dryer, from $699 each, Whirlpool Corp.; CHALKBOARD PAINT

Turn any wood, metal, or plaster surface into a memo station. $15, Valspar Corp.;

Don’t settle for a dull utility room. Paint and fabrics are easy ways to brighten the space. Spring Rain (520C-1), Behr;


Glass adds charm without creating bulk. Lewis Dolin Scalloped glass bin cabinet pull, $15, Van Dyke’s Restorers;


Wash and dry a full load in just 45 minutes. Affinity front-load washer and Affinity electric dryer, $1,149 each, Frigidaire;


Available in four colors, this pendant comes with 54 inches of cuttable cord. 6519-98, $100, Sea Gull Lighting Products;

Get creative with space constraints. In this tiny corner laundry, functional

storage is key. Stacking the washer and dryer makes room for a small utility sink, while cabinets and drawers stow an array of cleaning supplies. A seemingly singlefunction memo board serves as a magnetic home base for schedules, notes, and car keys—and opens to reveal a fold-down ironing station.

RUG Durable cotton

construction makes this rug a prime fit for high-traffic areas. Tortola Ticking cotton rug, $104, Dash & Albert Rug Co.;



BIG IDEAS for small spaces


Maximize Tiny Baths, Kitchens & Closets

39 Must-Have Products Under $25 Keep the Kids, Lose the Clutter! Real-Life Advice p. 24 Spring 2013

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Better Homes and Gardens Special Interest Publications

real-life strategies


hearts organizing Blogger extraordinaire Jen Jones shows how to keep a family of five organized on a budget in a compact home.

Keeping a family of five organized is tricky. Creating realistic, budget-friendly

Although her blog,, features some

storage strategies for a family within the confines of a 2,200-square-foot

large-scale projects, Jen says the key to her productivity is starting small.

home can seem nearly impossible. But not for I Heart Organizing blogger

“Make a list of things that are slowing you down,” Jen says. “Then pick just

Jen Jones. Jen and husband Bryan built their starter home in 2001, and

one small task to focus on. You’ll see the benefit, get excited, and want to

sons Preston, now 10, Peyton, 7, and Parker, 5, soon followed. Young and

move on to the next thing.” Jen notes that she takes extra aesthetic steps,

on a budget, the Joneses chose basic finishes and have slowly modified

such as covering a basic soup-can pencil caddy with pretty wrapping paper,

the space for a decade. No matter the project, whether it’s new labels

to keep herself motivated. “When you love the space you’re living in, you’re

or an entire room remodel, Jen’s goal is to make her family’s life more

more inclined to keep it neat,” she says.

efficient. “The simpler we make things, the more time we have to have fun together,” Jen says.



Jen keeps her family on board with her systems by making them extremely easy to follow. “My kids assume a lot of responsibility around the


Soon after Jen Jones decided to stay home with her three sons, she realized she needed better organizing systems. As she streamlined her family’s life, she began sharing her ideas on her now-thriving blog, iheartorganizing

A collection of ready-to-assemble bookcases, above, in Jen and Bryan Jones’ living room have the look of custom built-ins thanks to the addition of trim. Deep bookcases and a chest of drawers, right, pack storage into the colorful entryway. Jen and Bryan, top right, live busy lives with sons Preston, Peyton, and Parker. Low cabinets, above right, provide a spot for each Jones kid to stow his backpack, homework, and boots. The cabinet next to the door, far right, creates a drop zone for shoes, dog leashes, batteries for remotes, and Jen’s coupon binder.



real-life strategies house,” Jen says. “They take out the trash, do the dishes, and put away

together every Sunday and look at our planner,” she says. “We plan out the

their own laundry. We’ve found it works best to assign a daily chore

entire week: who’s going to which baseball games, what we’ll have for dinner

chart to each child, and then have them complete chores right when

each night, what chores need to be done. By taking 20 minutes each week

they get home from school. They’re discovering that when we all work

to communicate, we can make sure we’ll always be on the same page.”

together, we’re more productive.” Maintaining order in the Jones home is an ongoing, collaborative process—and the key to their success. “My husband and I sit down

RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 114. Writer Chelsea Evers Photographer Jay Wilde Producer Molly Reid Sinnett

A dining buffet, opposite, holds essentials that don’t fit elsewhere in the Jones home. Extra vases, holiday decor, small appliances, and special dishes reside in the unit, allowing kitchen cabinets to accommodate more frequently used items. Wineglass racks added beneath a floating shelf free up additional counter and cabinet space. A small pantry, right, means Jen can’t stock up on bulk items, so planning is key. Jen portions snacks into bags and food storage bins for her boys to grab, while cereals and pastas are emptied into clear plastic bins for easy recognition. Soups, spices, and drink mixes rest in an overdoor shelf, which hangs above Jen’s pantry inventory list. Plastic file bins, below, divide frozen foods by type and eliminate tumbling packages. Jen also keeps a freezer inventory list to avoid buying duplicate products.


Grocery shopping is a snap thanks to a checklist that Jen hangs inside her pantry door. After she uses an item, she simply checks its corresponding box and uses the record to plan meals and trips to the store each week. Head to to download your own pantry inventory and meal-planning tools.



real-life strategies


Custom cubby benches, opposite, store bins of toys at a kid-friendly level. Framed picture labels encourage young ones to help clean up. A chalkboard table gives the kids a place to play and doubles as a storage spot for larger bins of toys. A tree-lined wall, which Jen stenciled herself, brings charm to the basement space. A ready-to-assemble media cabinet, top, gets a quick makeover with a coat of white paint and new knobs. No longer necessary to organize lots of large electronic equipment, the shelves store games, books, media, and art supplies to keep the kids entertained.

A toy storage system with slide-out plastic bins, above left, sorts plastic pieces by color. Instructions and building plans reside in blue boxes atop the unit, along with the Joneses’ pet fish. Shelves show off toys and books with special meaning. Buckets in the media cabinet, above, feature number labels. To avoid confusion, Jen assigned each of her sons a number according to birth order. The boys use their digits to identify various belongings throughout the house. Jen filled the media cabinet with document boxes and CD bins repurposed as workbook holders.

Jen loves to separate supplies for specific tasks and hobbies into go-anywhere kits. In the playroom, an arts-andcrafts caddy holds markers and paints, while kits for pet care, first aid, and lunchmaking crop up elsewhere. Get all the details at StorageKits to make your own versions of Jen’s eight favorite kits.



real-life strategies



A former office space off the master bedroom, opposite, gave Jen just enough room to create a dreamy dressing area. A desk and chair make for a convenient vanity for Jen to primp for the day. The dresser contains Bryan’s ties and socks, while a fabric-covered corkboard and a metal vent cover display Jen’s jewelry. The master bedroom, opposite, below left, is a serene contrast to the home’s other dynamically organized spaces. A traditional nightstand stores Jen’s books and nighttime essentials. Custom molding on the bed wall, made with just $30 of trim, adds a touch of sophistication. Creative jewelry storage, opposite, below right, makes Jen’s baubles easy to locate. A repurposed egg crate corrals earrings and rings, while a molded ceramic hand keeps bracelets untangled. Fabric-covered cork squares on the inside of her armoire door, above, aid Jen in planning outfits. She likes to print and cut out fashion blogger suggestions from Pinterest, tacking them to the cork to create inspiring fashion boards. Adhesive bookplates, above right, indicate the appropriate wire drawer for storing folded clothing. Freestanding armoires, right, make up for a lack of closets in the Joneses’ master bedroom. Jen installed wire shelving in the ready-to-assemble cabinets to maximize storage. She dedicated one side to hanging clothes and the other to folded garments. A tiered shelf stores shoes at the bottom of the cabinet, while sweaters and seasonal accessories live in baskets Jen snagged from other areas of the house.



real-life strategies

Peyton and Parker, below, read in their shared bedroom. A stained-wood map mural, which Jen created herself with vinyl overlays, establishes the room’s travel theme. A customized storage tower, above right, keeps the boys’ treasured items safe. Jen and Bryan added sconces to the tower for bedtime reading. Day-of-the-week outfit sorters, right, simplify the boys’ morning routines. Jen made cardboard circles with a die-cut machine, covered them with printed CD labels, and laminated them. She helps the boys choose their clothing for the week, using clothespins to attach bottoms to the hanger, then slides each outfit into its corresponding slot. Basic wood spice racks, below right, were given coats of glossy red paint and now serve as shelves for picture books. Adhesive picture labels, opposite, identify contents of fabric bins within the boys’ door-free closet. Double rods on both sides of the storage tower maximize shirt and pants storage.



“My sons are on board with staying organized. Labels help them understand our systems.” —Jen Jones, homeowner and blogger



real-life strategies

Shelves above laundry appliances, left, store detergent, clothespins, and other supplies. Painted corbels give the shelves a custom look. A bucket atop the dryer holds delicates, while boxes on the washer corral sewing and stainremoval supplies. A cubby shelf near the washer and dryer, below left, holds bottled water, cleaning supplies, and extra paper goods. A tool caddy sits on the top shelf, ready at a moment’s notice. A hang bar, below middle, gives Jen a place to hang special clothes that need to be ironed or air-dried. Hampers below sort dirty laundry. Wire wall bins in Jen’s studio, below, collect paint decks and vinyl sheets for a die-cutting machine. A desk designed by Jen and assembled by Bryan, opposite, gives Jen a space to get down to business. Created from inexpensive bookcases, shelves, and trim, the unit brings together all Jen’s blogging necessities. Fabric swatches, design books, and important binders stay out in the open. Behind the cabinet doors, Jen keeps a receipt scanner, camera accessories, address books, and office supplies.




Jen condenses important information such as bills, budgets, emergency contacts, and shopping lists into a single three-ring family binder that she keeps in a convenient drawer. Start making your own family binder at for exclusive downloads. Or purchase Jen’s complete binder at

kitchen spaces


what to buy Keep food fresh and cabinets tidy with these clever kitchen accessories.


3 2


1 more shelf life

Extend produce usability with foam shelf liner that encourages air circulation below food so it stays crisp ($10 for a set of four cut-to-size liners). Get Organized; 800/829-1133;



2 boxed beauty

Prep party snacks ahead of time with this bento-inspired cutting board set. The slicing surface doubles as a lid for a plastic tray and set of five nesting measuring cups ($40). Umbra; 800/387-5122;

3 jar superstar

Store up to 16 containers of baby food in this dishwashersafe organizer. The stackable unit accommodates all three standard packaging sizes ($25). PRK Products Inc.; 888/3178496;

4 hanging in there

Find favorite spices in a flash when they’re snapped snugly into these stick-on clips. Each strip holds four jars—or you can cut into individual holders ($8 for set of 12 clips). Taylor Gifts; 800/868-6169;



Writer Chelsea Evers Photographer (1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 7) Jay Wilde



5 slim solution

Stainless-steel pegs and a detachable utensil cup make this bamboo rack a versatile dish-drying option. The rack slopes downward for draining into a sink ($40).; 800/600-9817;

6 little labels

Take the guesswork out of a fridge full of food containers with fun illustrated labels. Simply note the purchase date and sort by type ($6 for 90 stickers). See Jane Work; 877/400-5263;

7 pour or store

Add style and function to your countertop with a set of glass dispensers. Buttons atop the dishwasher-safe flasks control how quickly oil and vinegar flow ($40). A+R; 800/913-007;

8 inside story

This innovative cabinet system combines a tiered utensil drawer, interior knife block with cutting board, and divided drawers (elements start at $400). Kraftmaid; 888/5627744;

living spaces


what to buy

These stylish organizing solutions promise clutter-free communal spaces. 1




1 floating on air

Save space by storing treasured tomes on this quirky yet sturdy shelf. The supports are hidden inside book covers on both ends, which stay shut thanks to tiny clips ($35). Chiasso; 877/244-2776;



2 in clear view

Picking up after playtime is a bit easier thanks to windowed drawers in this birch toy bench. An inset cushion makes for inviting extra seating ($280). Hayneedle; 866/530-4152;

3 command center Designed for kids’ art supplies, this iron organizer ably sorts daily essentials such as eyeglasses, tissues, and notepads. Available in four peppy powder-coated finishes ($15). Land of Nod; 800/9339904;

4 paper trail

Restore order with these wall files that feature dry-erase labels. Hooks and magnets on the back make these easy to hang just about anywhere ($10 each). Mead OrganizHer; 800/200-6177;



Writer Chelsea Evers Photographer (1, 3, 4, and 6) Jay Wilde

Combine storage elements to create a system that works for you.

7 8

5 padded perch

Kids can stow toys, art supplies, and more in these soft-sided collapsible cubes that double as seats—each supports up to 75 pounds ($35 each). Land of Nod; 800/933-9904;

6 media mogul

Send old VHS tapes, film, slides, and even vinyl records to Peggy Bank pros, who convert them to digital files you can share on Facebook and YouTube (starting at $10). Peggy Bank; 877/8945199;

7 crate appeal

Snap drawers, hooks, and shelves onto these sturdy plastic crates to create a shelving unit or media center customized to your needs ($20 per crate; accessories from $6). Quirky; 866/578-4759;

8 sleek station

Add sophisticated charm to any entertaining space when you pair this collapsible polishednickel stand with a lacquered tray ($150 for stand; $59–$69 for tray). West Elm; 888/9224119;

Better Homes and Gardens Special Interest Publications


35 Projects

how to

Download T his Fre e Ste ncil!


Under $20



Furniture, Walls, Floors & Fabric

Stamp a Chair Se at Spring 2013 Vol. 20 / Issue 1

Display until April 9 $4.99 U.S.

Colorful Wall Projects That Wow Make a Cool Table from Scratch

BHG SIP Blue Checkout

Color- B loc k a Bu f f e t

stuff we love

on our radar

Spring into the season with clever products that bring flair and function both indoors and out. producers CHELSEA EVERS & BRIAN KRAMER photographs JAY WILDE words CHELSEA EVERS

Petite plants

Cultivate culinary de lights without committing to a fullsize garden. These 18 ×3×2-inch planters made from recycled steel come with growi ng medium and three typ es of herb or vegetable seeds. It will perch perfectly on a kitchen windowsill. $4 0 per kit; pottingshedcreation

Garden variety

Enjoy the crops your grandparents grew wit h an heirloom seed collec tion. The packets (we tucked ours in a fruit carton) promise a threeto five-year harvest of 25 different veggies, inc luding celery, eggplant, pump kin, and kale. $49 for kit; m

Grow green

Step away from the pla stic pot! Planters made fro m renewable plant bypro ducts and organic pigments come in eight colors and las t at least five years above ground. Nova pot series starts at $5; For book resources see

page 106. Do It Yourself Spring 2013


stu we love


3 18

Do It Yourself Spring 2013

1. Stitch in time

2. Quick fix

Sew something adorable with an embroidery kit that includes essential supplies and one of more than 100 PDF patterns. Patterns alone start at $4, kits start at $18;

Swipe the freshsmelling Tibet Almond Stick across damaged furniture, hardwood floors, or wainscoting to instantly erase scratches and blemishes. $13 for a two-pack;


3. Plant primer

4. Bottoms up

Bring a little life to tiny terraces and petite patios with inventive ideas from gardening pro Isabelle Palmer. Find out how to plant a cocktail-focused window box, a budgetfriendly wall garden, or a leafy space for entertaining. $20,

Repurpose your favorite soda or beer bottles into a clever piece of illuminating art with this lamp kit. Just invert clean glass bottles in rings around the included lightbulb. Shine on! $40 for kit;


4 6 5. Girl power


These vibrant teal tools are perfectly proportioned for quick projects such as hanging artwork, assembling furniture, or installing curtain rods. The DIYVA set fits inside a roomy zippered canvas case. $40;

6. A cut above

7. Lift off

8. Chic smock

Slice through cardboard, rope, vinyl, carpet, and even plastic clamshell packaging with this hardworking rotary cutter. The cordless device features a blade guard and long-lasting lithium-ion battery. $40;

Take the backbreaking work out of remodeling when you use Handle on Demand to transport countertops, cabinets, and more up to 100 pounds. Simply suction the handle to any flat, nonporous surface and lift—with the legs, of course. $10;

Pull weeds and sow seeds in style with this machine-washable tool belt disguised as an apron. Three roomy, ruffled pockets hold garden tools for easy access. $34;

8 Do It Yourself Spring 2013


stuff we love





Do It Yourself Spring 2013

9. Wash ’n’ go

10. Get a grip

Clean up to 10 garments at a time in the Laundry Pod, a sustainable alternative to traditional washing machines. The Pod requires just 3 gallons of water per cycle and spins with a hand crank, saving both water and electricity. $100;

Secure large or oddly shaped cargo with the Flex Web, a set of six bungee cords joined by a central ring. Flexible polyurethane cords come in 11 colors and stretch to twice their original length. $18.02 for a 24-inch Flex Web;

12 11. Create a card

12. High roller

Channel your inner artist with these playful stamp sets and ink pads. Design a scene from London, Paris, or New York—or make a custom greeting card with cheery holiday-theme sets. $13 per stamp set, and $5 per ink pad;

Easy cleanup is the name of the game with this cageless, quickrelease mini roller. A notched end means roller covers stay put, while a universal threaded handle makes the Cageless frame compatible with most extension poles. $12;


14 13. A step above

14. How-to hero

Standard ladders take up precious storage real estate. The Xtend and Climb telescoping ladder collapses into itself, making it a compact, portable choice for on-thego chores. $150 for the 81â „2-foot model;

Bring back a crafting staple of the 1970s when you create the inexpensive Mod Podge projects in this jam-packed guide. Decoupage everything from a pair of old boots to a handmade pendant bracelet. $8;

15. Tailored tiles These cozy carpet squares add homey charm to bare floors, whether installed as a small rug, a runner, or wall-to-wall carpeting. Cables and stripes vary from tile to tile for a personal result. $14 per tile;

15 Do It Yourself Spring 2013


cotta e style


Fresh looks for easy living

Fall/Winter 2012

Display until January 21




A diverse collection of paintings, vintage art, and mirrors hangs behind the sofa, giving the newly decorated living room a lived-in vibe.

quick change A Midwestern photography duo turn to vintage treasures to transform their tiny condo into a personality-rich second home. Writer: C H E L S E A E V E R S Photographer: K I M C O R N E L I S O N Producers: D A V I D A N G E R A N D M E R E D I T H L A D I K



The living room’s creamy neutral sofa sets the stage for colorful accent pieces. A tray on the ottoman holds treasured books and trinkets, while beach baskets corral favorite magazines.


After years of commuting to Minneapolis on assignments, Iowa-based photography duo Kim Cornelison and Alfie Ferreyra were ready to establish a second home in the Twin Cities. Although the couple worried that the cost would be prohibitive, they found an affordable solution in a quirky apartment-turned-condo in the heart of downtown Minneapolis. The place boasted big style—hardwood floors, a charming foyer, and original 1920s cabinetry—and with just 750 square feet to fill, the couple knew they could use thrifty finds and items they already owned to make it feel like home in a flash. Kim and Alfie first addressed the inefficient kitchen, knocking out a short wall, adding cabinetry, and trading full-size appliances for smaller ones to gain counter space. The petite cook space feels bigger than its square footage thanks to glass-front cabinets, clear light fixtures, and bright white woodwork. Framed pegboard above the sink and range, inspired by Julia Child’s legendary Cambridge, Massachusetts, kitchen, shows off the couple’s pots, pans, and favorite cooking gadgets. When the renovations were complete, Kim and Alfie shifted to decorating mode, creating a simple background in the home’s large rooms with a white-on-white palette and basic bamboo window shades. Only the condo’s smallest areas—the foyer, kitchen backsplash, and bedroom—received bold color and graphic patterns. “Kim and Alfie wanted pattern, but they chose it judiciously,” says friend and designer David Anger. “And all the colors in the apartment relate back to the yellow, green, and blue found in the kitchen tile.” Kim and Alfie didn’t need expensive new furniture and accessories to foster the lived-in feeling they desired; they just used items they had collected together over the years. Small trinkets, beloved books, souvenirs, and family heirlooms adorn walls and surfaces. The couple filled empty spaces with treasures they picked up at nearby garage sales and flea markets, immediately giving the condo a relaxed atmosphere. “Random artifacts and art bring it to life,” Alfie says of the space. “It’s goodlooking.” And the best part, he says, is the look “can be achieved very affordably.”



ABOVE LEFT: Kim Cornelison and Alfie Ferreyra filled their foyer with dynamic pattern and color. ABOVE MIDDLE: Mix-and-match style continues in the bedroom with layered linens. ABOVE RIGHT: A modern Parsons desk goes cottage when paired with a Victorian silhouette chair. BELOW LEFT: White-painted woodwork makes handcrafted cement tile the star of the kitchen. BELOW RIGHT: The dining room owes its calming ambience to wood-and-wicker seating, soft pillows, and green and glass accents. OPPOSITE: A desk nestled in a living room corner offers a place to work at home.



Four wood-andwicker chairs in Patti and Craig Mutch’s sunroom provide what are arguably the best seats in the house— offering a stunning 180-degree view of Lake Michigan. A small table and chairs flaunting leopardprint cushions transform the space into a game room where the Mutches can gather for a little friendly competition.

prime perch Just feet from Lake Michigan, this new, colorful summer house feels like a long-established home for family and friends alike. Writer:









Though empty nesters,

Patti and Craig Mutch still made their children a priority when they built their vacation home in 2009. Parents of three adults who live in Chicago, the couple hoped the cottage on Lake Michigan might become a home away from home where the family could spend quality time together—and that’s exactly what happened. “This past summer, they came and brought all their friends,” Patti says. Guests feel welcome and relaxed the moment they step into interior designer Kathryn Chaplow’s clean, effortlessly furnished rooms. “We didn’t want to match the house to the lake, but we wanted to create a natural palette that fits the setting,” Chaplow says of the home’s soothing backgrounds and bright accents. Pale blues and beiges make common areas serene places to kick back with a book, while dark woods and wickers bring warmth to the airy spaces. Patti notes that she purchased most furnishings and accessories from local stores and mass retailers, only adding to the come-as-you-are mood. Chaplow and Patti gave special thought to the realities of hosting young adults and large groups. Hardwood floors and washable slipcovers are no-fuss staples. The exterior siding of fiber-cement board and composite decking put home maintenance worries to rest and let Patti and Craig focus on spending time with their children. Although the cottage offers only three bedrooms, Chaplow outfitted the rooms with trundle beds, daybeds, and sofa sleepers. Even the twin-size reading nook in the master bedroom hosts an extra sleeper. All told, the cottage can host up to 14 overnight guests. But perhaps the best feature of the home exists outside its four walls. Breathtaking waterfront views behind the home make it a standout retreat. Patio chairs line the west-facing veranda, inviting visitors to grab seats and take in the view throughout the day—and especially at sunset. A walkway above sand dunes leads beachgoers from the expansive deck to stairs that transition down to the water, where the family and their guests enjoy dining in the summertime.



Nature-inspired pillows, linen-covered, and a striped cotton rug beg visitors to open the windows and feel the breeze coming off the lake. Art by Judith Tummino, a Michigan artist who specializes in landscapes, brings outdoor color and inspiration indoors.


“The exterior color is so and it set the tone for where we went with the palette inside.” — K A T H R Y N C H A P L O W, I N T E R I O R D E S I G N E R

OPPOSITE LEFT: Surrounded by trees, the home’s back walkway ends in stairs that lead to a secluded lower deck, perfect for morning coffee or sunset watching. OPPOSITE RIGHT: The soft colors of the cottage’s exterior set the stage for a relaxing getaway. In back, an expansive deck and reclined seating are ideal for soaking up sun and enjoying water views. ABOVE LEFT: A blue bed, green walls, and cheery linens are grounded by a wicker nightstand and a shapely black lamp in a guest room. ABOVE RIGHT: The hardworking kitchen achieves airiness thanks to a vaulted ceiling, shimmering backsplashes, and glass-front cabinetry. Clerestory windows above the range brighten the space, while stools surrounding the island provide a gathering space for hungry guests.



Chelsea Evers Home Design Portfolio  
Chelsea Evers Home Design Portfolio