give your closet a makeover

The closet you’ve always wanted may be only 10 steps away.

give your closet a makeoverProfessional organizer Monica Friel has seen it all–from closets so full you can’t open the door to closets blocked by all the clothes and belongings filling the floor. We thought if she could handle those messes, your closet should be easy. And according to Friel, who has appeared as an organizational expert on popular television shows, your dream closet is only 10 steps away. Let’s get started:

Purge, purge & purge some more

“You wear 20 percent of your clothes, 80 percent of the time,” Friel said, who owns Chaos to Order. “The more you get rid of, the simpler it is to find things. If you keep too much, you can’t find what’s important.” What should go? Clothing that doesn’t fit, hasn’t been worn in the last year, and is not in season or needs mending or cleaning. Sentimental or keepsake items should also be moved elsewhere.

United we stand

There’s no need to invest in a pricey organizational system to give your closet a crisp, uniform look. Instead, invest in a collection of the


30 Quick and Easy Cleaning Tips

30 Quick and Easy Cleaning TipsYou love a spotless house—but you don’t want to spend the bulk of your time actually cleaning. Well, fret no more. We talked to seven experts who gave us some of their best methods to make chores easier, more effective and much less time-consuming, so you can have a tidy, sparkling home in no time flat. Even Mom would approve.

In The Kitchen

Circle Your Way Around: Always begin on the right side of your stove, then move clockwise around the room. The stove is typically the dirtiest part of the kitchen, so ending with it keeps you from spreading dirt and grease. (First, soak drip pans and knobs in warm soapy water. By the time you’ve worked your way around, they’ll be easier to clean.)

Sanitize the Sink: It’s hard to believe, but your dirty kitchen sink has more bacteria than your toilet seat. Use a product labeled as an EPA-registered disinfectant, or make your own. To disinfect, clean your sink with soap and water first, then spray a mist


5 Ways to Create a Cozy Home

5 Ways to Create a Cozy HomeThink you have to sacrifice comfort for sophistication? Think again. Plush, inviting furniture paired with eclectic accents lets you stretch out in style.

Play With Color

Color connects a riot of items: Deep magenta travels from the rug to the basket to the pillow pile. Ankara Soumak jute rug, $590 (five by eight feet), Polywood side tables (similar to shown), $149 each, Terrarium, $85, for info. Large lidded basket, $175, Orange mohair pillow (left), $139, Striped pillow (front), $225, for info. Sumba antique pillow (behind striped pillow), $285, for info. Large ivory cotton pillows, $128 each, Gray linen pillows (stacked at right), $74 each,

Mix and Match Materials

Create Your Own Work of Art

A composed display feels friendly and charming against a casual (and marked-up) chalkboard wall. The recipe? Something high and curvy, something low and wide, and a natural element that offers a burst of color.

Soft materials—rich velvet upholstery and a luxe alpaca throw—clustered with hard, shiny surfaces create intriguing tactile interplay (sort of makes you want to pet the furniture). Don’t be afraid to tuck a big,


How To Know Your AC Needs Repair

As temperatures are beginning to rise, many people will be switching on the air-con system for the first time this year. People who really appreciate their air-conditioning systems look after them properly. They have a service agreement with a reputable company.

Under these agreements, HVAC engineers will come regularly to give the AC unit a health-check. Any failing parts will be replaced or repaired. That reduces the chances of the system failing to work when it is most needed. It also reduces energy bills, because the air-con system will be running at maximum efficiency.

However, even systems that get the best care can go wrong. A problem may not cause the system to fail completely, but any issues should be resolved because a unit that is not working properly costs more to run.

It is always a good idea to give your AC unit a test run before you need it for environmental control. It is far better to discover problems before the air-con becomes essential. Test the unit a few weeks before you expect to need it for comfort. If there is a problem, you will have ample time to get it sorted out,

Get Your Yard Looking Its Very Best

 It’s always problematic to keep up with the Joneses on your block. Every neighborhood has that one home that has the perfect outdoor entertaining space and a backyard that seems impossibly green and weed free. If you want your yard to looks its very best, it’s not that difficult. All you need are a few helpful hints and you’re well on your way to having the yard of your dreams.


The best way to get your yard looking green and healthy is to give it the food it needs. Fertilizers are available from any home improvement or outdoor gardening retailer. Believe it or not, the timing is important when it comes to fertilizing. Just because you feed your lawn doesn’t mean it will be bright and green.

If you live in the northern US, you’ll want to fertilize your lawn in the fall and spring as these are the growing seasons for the grass. Fall treatments help the yard survive winter, and spring treatments help it bounce back during its biggest growth period. If you live in the southern US, feed your lawn during the spring and summer.

6 Steps to a More Inviting Bathroom

Spruce up your bathroom in fresh ways to ensure a more relaxing start and end to your day.Just a few small changes can transform even the most cluttered bathroom into a place where you feel invigorated in the morning and can unwind before bed.

1. Pamper yourself.

Find ways to engage your senses throughout your morning or evening routine. Even the smallest change can have large revitalizing effects.

Take a cue from the day spas—fill an unbreakable carafe with cold water and thin cucumber slices, and enjoy a refreshing glass after a steamy shower or bath. If you prefer something sweet, try oranges with a bit of agave nectar or honey.

Handpick your products for sensorial value. Try an energizing shower gel or soothing body lotion, and go for a supersoft, cushy bathrobe.

To give your bathroom an inviting scent, without overwhelming the small space, keep Glade® Sense & Spray® Automatic Freshener near the inside of the bathroom entrance. Its smart technology releases a concentrated burst of fresh fragrance when it detects motion—so it works when you need it and conserves when you don’t.

2. Declutter!

Throw out expired prescriptions, outdated cosmetics and other unneeded products. If you haven’t used it in a

Window Cleaning Tips

Try some of our personal tricks for getting windows shined up fast!

No-stress cleaners.

Now you can clean with little effort. That’s because Windex® Original Glass Cleaner works great for fast and easy cleaning of tough dirt and grime. It also works great on glass, mirrors, chrome, plastic, stainless steel and more.

Choose your weapon.

Keep Windex® Original Glass Wipes on hand to use instead of paper towels, for a streak-free, lint-free shine.

Special rooms, special windows.

I love scenting different rooms in my house, and SC Johnson products allow me to do that. For instance, I always clean the windows in my laundry room with Windex® Crystal Rain™ . Not only do I get that famous streak-free shine, but Crystal Rain™ leaves a refreshingly clean scent behind.

Smaller spaces, easy cleaning.

Cleaning small windows can be tricky. Try cutting a squeegee to the exact window size. First, remove the rubber blade and trim the metal blade holder with a saw. Then cut the rubber blade to match with a scissors or garden snips. For streak-free cleaning, run the squeegee across the top of the window pane, wipe the blade, and then run the squeegee in downward strokes starting at the bottom of the horizontal

Bedroom Makeovers

Discover how to inexpensively turn your bedroom into a soul-soothing refuge.


White is the ideal color

for a relaxing bedroom; it gives off an aura of peace and purity and defuses visual tension. An all-white or neutral color scheme also makes a room look bigger.

Other soothing shades

are buff, beige, biscuit, or soft shades of blue, green, yellow, gray and pink. If you suffer from insomnia, choose light violet or blue—colors said to induce calm and lower blood pressure.

Contrast sheets in calming colors with unusual textures

to prevent your sleeping space from appearing too bland. Throw a sumptuous satin comforter over stark white sheets or combine delicately detailed fabrics such as lace and eyelet with more robust ones like piqué and wool.

Create a haven of romance

around a dove-white bed by adding floaty drapes falling from a ceiling-attached corona.

bed & bedding

Invest in a decent mattress

every ten years. A supportive, well-cushioned mattress is essential to a good night’s rest. Also, buy the best pillows to support your head and neck.

Choose high-quality bed linens

in natural fibers and colors. For allergy-free nights, stay clear of permanent press sheets (treated with formaldehyde and other toxic chemicals) and choose 100 percent organically grown, 100 percent

13 Unexpected Organizers

Getting organized doesn’t require buying more stuff. The best way to clear your clutter is to upcycle everyday items around your house.

1. put some rings on it

Use a wooden hanger and some shower curtain rings to fashion a space-saving and attractive scarf organizer. Your scarves will be easy to find and wrinkle free. So the rings don’t slide too much, tie a piece of string tightly around both the hanger and shower ring. (If you have enough scarves on the hanger, this may not be necessary.)

2. mirror maximizer

Use a magnetic strip on the inside of your bathroom vanity mirror to secure bobby pins, hair clips, nail clippers, and other easy-to-lose items that are taking up space (and hard to find in a drawer or basket).

3. tangle tamer

Use a hair clip or a binder clip to store your earbuds (or phone charger and cord) neatly in your purse or backpack, and say goodbye to tangly messes!

4. “rodical” reorganization

Use an adjustable tension rod under your sink to save space and organize your cleaning supplies.

5. the organized artist

Those large plastic makeup organizers are a great way for the junior Picassos in your household to organize their art supplies. Damp paintbrushes stay neat in

8 Clever New Uses for Ordinary Things

Spend less time and effort cleaning when you repurpose common household items in surprising new ways.

1. An “Apeeling” Idea

Dress up your soups, salads and pasta dishes with shaved slices of Parmesan like the kind served in a restaurant—only use your vegetable peeler to slice the cheese right over the dish. It’s quick, easy and there’s no messy grater or cutting board to wash. The peeler is also perfect for adding shaved chocolate to homemade desserts (or for enhancing store-bought ones). Short strokes create chocolate shavings and long strokes make curls.

2. Worth your Salt

With only 2 cups of coarse sea salt (or kosher salt), ¼ cup of baking soda and 10 drops of essential oil in your favorite scent, you can make luxuriant bath salts. Mix and store the ingredients in a Ziploc® brand Twist ’n Loc® Container. Add three heaping tablespoons to warm bathwater when filling the tub to relax achy muscles.

3. Get a Grip

Occasionally, you’ll need to rest your broom or mop against a wall. To prevent it from sliding (leaving a scuff mark on the wall) and crashing to the floor, cut off a finger from an old rubber glove and fit it over the

7 Little Cleaning Tricks That Pay Off Big

Even a few changes can make a huge difference in your life, helping you save energy and money. But most of all, they’ll help you transform your cleaning time into more moments for the things that matter most. And isn’t that kind of magical?

1. Make a Great Entrance

Each time someone enters your home, he or she tracks in dirt. Although the greatest concentrations of this dirt collect near the entryways, foot traffic can quickly spread it throughout your home. According to an EPA study, 30 to 40 percent of the undesirable chemicals in the dust inside your home is brought in from outdoors.

Adding a doormat outside makes it easier to keep dirt outside where it belongs. Go one step further and implement a shoes-off policy that starts just beyond your threshold. This will help ensure that the dirt and debris don’t wind up in your carpet or rugs. With less dirt to clean up, you’ll reduce the time you spend cleaning, mopping and vacuuming your floors.

2. Turn Scrubbing into Scrubbies

To get more bathroom cleaning done in less time and with less effort, forget scrubbing and let technology do the hard work for you. To get your tub and

21 low cost ​home dècor ideas

Are you ready for a change but just don’t have the time or money to remodel or redecorate? Not to worry. You can create a fresh look in far less time than you think.

Almost-instant updates

Just one small change can completely refresh the feel of a room. So try these quick, easy and fun ways to bring some sparkle back into your space.

Rev up your rearranging.

Sometimes all it takes to give a room a fresh look is a quick shuffle of your current furniture and accessories. Try moving things from one room to another or mixing and matching old things with new. And experiment with different heights, textures and proportions until you find something that looks right to your eye.

Play with knots.

When combing local flea markets or garage or tag sales, keep your eyes peeled for old tablecloths and silk scarves. Simply tie the corners around basic pillows to instantly update a sofa or chair. Use any leftover material to make a pretty bow or an interestingly twisted knot.

Consider new uses.

A child’s tin bucket makes a delightful holder for rolled-up towels in a bathroom. And a small table lamp with shade on your kitchen counter will quickly create

60 ​Minute Spring Cleaning

In the time it takes to watch one of your favorite television shows, you can make inroads toward a fresher, cleaner, more attractive home. Spring cleaning without the drama!

Though times have changed, the idea of spring cleaning is still as sound as ever. But it doesn’t have to usurp your whole schedule. In fact, if you can block out just sixty minutes this season…you can make a significant inroad toward a fresher, cleaner, more attractive home. And we’re here to tell you how.

The key to our 60-minute spring cleaning plan is organization. To help, our cleaning experts have compiled a set of the most fruitful tasks. Read through our time-saving tips; then start your timer. You’ll be out on your lawn enjoying the sunshine before you know it!

Gather the team.

Unless you live alone, family members can be called upon to lighten the work load. Parcel out tasks to each participant. Even the youngest can help dust or spend time putting away their things. Give them the same hope you have: it’ll take only an hour!

Set a clear direction.

Work your way from the outside of the house inward. Begin with exterior doors and windows and progress

12 Easy Spring ​Cleaning Tips

The arrival of spring is the perfect time to refresh your home. Here are some great room-by-room spring-cleaning tips and a useful guide to help you clean up fast and start anew.


Start on the outside. One of the most gratifying spring-cleaning accomplishments is getting the windows so clean that the sunshine pours in as the weather warms up. But you can’t get perfectly clean windows just by doing the inside glass alone. The next nice spring day, enjoy some fresh air outdoors and clean the outsides of your windows with the new Windex™ Outdoor All-in-One Glass Cleaning Tool glass cleaning tool.

Savor the sweet smell of success. Once the outsides of the windows are clean, focus on getting the insides as clear as possible. Use a glass cleaner with a refreshingly clean scent, like Windex® Crystal Rain™. Not only will it give your windows a Windex® streak-free shine, your home will smell great, too.


Vacuum first. The bathroom has lots of corners and crevices that attract dust bunnies and dirt. Vacuuming before cleaning will make the cleaning process easier and faster. Use your vacuum’s crevice attachment to get into tight spaces and reach under cabinets.


8 Cleaning Tips and Tricks to Keep Things Cleaner Longer

Giving your home that fresh feeling takes some elbow grease, but these ideas make it easier to fight those dirty jobs faster and less often.

1.  Defy Dust

Trick: You can combat dust by adjusting your home’s humidity level.

The facts: Low humidity levels cause static electricity. Not only does static attract dust, it makes it stick, so it’s difficult to remove. High humidity causes problems, too — it’s an ideal environment for dust mites. These microscopic critters are a double threat: They’re a common allergen, and they contribute to dust production. There are as many as 19,000 dust mites in half a teaspoon of house dust, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology. Yuck!

Next steps: Keep your home’s humidity level between 40% to 50%. That’ll eliminate static while decreasing dust mite growth.

Related: Measure Your Home Humidity Level

Make it easy to keep your household vents dust free. Remove and wash them once a year with mild soap and water. After they’re clean and completely dry, apply a liberal coat of car wax; then buff.

2.  Keep Glass Shower Doors Crystal Clear

Trick: You can eliminate soap scum build-up by coating your glass shower doors with a rain-repellant

Cleaning tips

Check out our cleaning tips guide for stubborn stains and more

Find out how to clean windows, cookers, washing machines and everything in between with out handy cleaning guides.

If you’re ready to tackle your home’s big clean, you won’t want to miss these expert cleaning tips for every room in your house

Getting ready for your spring clean? Before you put on those marigolds, check out our cleaning hub.

We’ve got top tricks, time-saving cleaning ideas and bags of advice to make your big house clean less of a chore.

Click on to find everything from how to organise your spring cleaning routine, to how to give your windows extra sparkle…

Cleaning checklists and stain removal

Make sure you have everything you need to sail through the washing, however full the basket. It will make it much easier to get cracking in the first place and will save time in the long run.

* A-Z of stain removal tips

From ballpoint pen marks to shoe polish stains, our top tips will to help you make your stuff as good as new with minimal effort required.

* How to plan the perfect laundry room

Organise an overflowing laundry room with a few clever tricks. Once organised, your

11 Affordable Ways to Make Your Home Feel Cozier

Regardless of the season, every home can benefit from adding a little cozy comfort. If you’re looking to add soft layers and homey touches without spending a fortune, you’ll love these cheap solutions! Check out these 11 styling tricks for making your home feel better on a budget — your savings will thank you.

Add a Curtain Wall

Try hanging curtains all the way across a wall. It will add visual interest, and the bulk of material will create a cozy effect. Ikea has endless curtain options starting at as little as $10 per pair, so you can buy plenty of panels to reach across a wall.

Display Family Photos

There are so many ways to display family photos. Using them as decor will make you feel comforted and at ease.

Use Seating in the Bedroom

Adding seating to a bedroom gives it a lounge-like appeal that will tempt you to curl up with a book. Scour thrift stores and flea markets for affordable vintage leather seating that can easily be wiped down and cleaned

Include a Throw

Accessories are a great way to

13 ways to make visitors feel comfortable in your home

It’s that time of year: Time to get the guest room in tip-top shape.

Whether you have a dedicated guest room with its own bath or a den doing double-duty, there are easy ways to make your guests feel special.

We surveyed area interior designers for tips on how best to prepare. They weighed in on the essential elements of a gracious guest room.

At a minimum, they agreed guests need comfortable sheets, pillows and towels, plus a little space to unpack and relax.

They also offered tips on converting a den or family room into makeshift guest quarters. And they offered their favorite extra-special touches, such as infusing a little holiday spirit and creating cozy reading nooks.

Here are 13 ways to make you and your guests more comfortable.

1. DECLUTTERED SPACE. Rarely-used guest rooms often get tapped as spillover storage space. Just remember, it’s not relaxing for your guests to sleep in a storage bunker. Pack up the knickknacks, spare clothing and general junk, and store it anyplace else. Guests should have at least a couple of empty drawers to put things away, and they should have closet space for hanging clothes. They should also be able to put a book and/or a bottle

40 Stunning Bedrooms Flaunting Decorative Canopy Beds

Back in the days, wealthy people would add their luxuriously carved canopy beds to the will, leaving their beloved dreamland to be enjoyed and admired by future generations. Now, we get to enjoy past examples and contribute our own designs to the history of this fascinating bed.

Wealthy or not, we all dream

First built as a functional furniture item, the canopy bed became the canvas for inspiring carvings and design interpretations in different upscale residences. From four poster beds with curtains that kept warmth in and noise out to ornate canopy beds of the wealthy, this fairly simple bed design has seen a revival in contemporary interior design. Furthermore, the canopy bed is certainly no longer a luxury item for the wealthy, you can actually find some stylish and affordable canopy beds here on (we were surprised with quality of their selection!).

With this in mind, we return to our reality. Now that summer is over and we hurry towards wintertime, outdoor canopy beds are put aside for an encounter with cozy canopy beds in the bedroom. Feathered beds used to be frameless bags filled with feathers that had to be fluffed every morning. Now we indulge

7 Personalized Mugs for Every Coffee or Tea Lover

For that friend who’s always saying, “Shh, I haven’t had my coffee yet,” these personalized mugs might just be the only thing worth smiling about before that caffeine jolt kicks in.

Gold Calligraphy Mug

A simple, yet beautiful way to ensure your partner or coworker doesn’t accidentally walk off with your coffee mug. Choose metallic gold, metallic silver, or black lettering.

Personalized Family Mugs

Let each family member select a character that looks just like a sketch version of him or herself—hair color, skin tone, clothing choice, and all! Keep the set or gift it to a family member who lives afar

Personalized Bride Mug

A great gift for the newly engaged, this custom mug features her wedding date under the words “bride-to-be.

Prescription Coffee Mug

A humorous gift for someone who readily admits not being able to do anything before coffee. Customize the “prescription label” with his or her name to make it uniquely theirs.

Personalized Drink Order Mug

With this mug, you (thankfully) won’t have to say a word before you’ve