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Archive for November, 2012

Top 10 Creative DIY Holiday Gifts

Thursday, November 29th, 2012

The life of sustainability and ingenious crafting – many of us want it, few of us actually feel we have time for it.

A popular trend this holiday season, with the advent of Pinterest, has been making your own gifts for friends and family. A unique aspect of homemade gifts is that they often used recycled materials or natural materials you already have on hand! Here are our top affordable and creative DIY gifts this holiday season from a variety of creative crafting bloggers, if you’re looking for ideas:

Idea from Sparkle & Hay

Idea from Sparkle & Hay

1. DIY Printed Candles – While stamp sets aren’t free (most of the ones I saw were around $14), this project is my top pick; there’s no denying that this project just looks plain cool. I feel like candles are a gift that are kind of bland on their own (you don’t see “candles” on the top of most Christmas lists), but in putting a little thought and customization into them they make a way better gift! Read more »



Why quality products matter – and can be found online

Tuesday, November 20th, 2012
I got this blooming tea set off Amazon last Christmas for about $20. It was really cool and fun and ended up being a great gift! As you can see, the quality is great. Online products often have reviews so you know exactly what kind of experience to expect.

I got this blooming tea set off Amazon last Christmas for about $20. It was really cool and fun and ended up being a great gift! As you can see, the quality is great. Online products often have reviews so you know exactly what kind of experience to expect.

It’s easy to skimp on things because of money. In the real world, we have a limited budget and competing needs, desires and priorities. But we’ve all had a bad experience where we’ve bought something cheap and it didn’t work out too well for us. As the saying goes, “you get what you pay for” and sometimes cheap products become more of a hassle and you end up losing money on them between repairs and replacing them. From researching product reviews, it seems that most people find it more worthwhile to buy a higher quality product as long as the value is reasonable than mess with a faulty one. Read more »



Pin Review: Oversize Engineering Prints as Gallery Wraps

Friday, November 16th, 2012
Make a cheaper DIY gallery wrap with a Staples engineering print and foamboard. Original pin idea from dearlillieblog.blogspot.com

Make a cheaper DIY gallery wrap with a Staples engineering print and foamboard. Original pin idea from dearlillieblog.blogspot.com

Another pin I thought I would try. As a photographer myself, I love large, gorgeous prints as home decor. However, high quality gallery wraps are usually $50-200. Recently I’d been hearing of this new trend of getting “engineering prints” done at office supplies stores for really cheap (under $10) instead. I was kind of skeptical. Are you really going to get high quality prints using some secret other method? Though of course I had to try it out of curiosity, too. Read more »



Air Quality Q&A with experienced published HVAC instructor

Tuesday, November 13th, 2012
You may be losing money and wasting energy on heating and air conditioning and might not even know it. Today we have a Happy Havens Q & A with someone who literally wrote the textbooks on this topic: Ronnie J. Auvil, featured in this photo with his book Indoor Air Quality Solutions.

You may be losing money and wasting energy on heating and air conditioning and might not even know it. Today we have a Happy Havens Q & A with someone who literally wrote the textbooks on this topic: Ronnie J. Auvil, featured in this photo with his book Indoor Air Quality Solutions.

Air quality is important in every home, but it can be difficult to understand how to make an effective system that saves both energy and money. And most of us don’t usually have any kind of heating and air professional or air quality specialist to help us in making these decisions for free. ”HVAC” is short for heating, ventilating, and air conditioning. After working in the field for over 30 years, Ron Auvil has some sound advice for controlling air and saving money as homeowners along with some cutting edge technologies. Read more »



Pin Review: DIY Colored Ink Coasters

Thursday, November 8th, 2012

Have you ever seen a pin you thought was really cool but weren’t sure if it was legit? Tell us about it in the comments and we’ll blog about it!

In high school AP art, I found my calling with colored inks and watercolors. They dry quickly and there’s so many cool effects you can do – wax resist, sprinkled salt to look like snowflakes or stars, flicking the paint off the brush to make it look like random spray, using rubbing alcohol to make “craters,” etc. Well, you can imagine my enthusiasm when I found this pin on Pinterest. Read more »



Common dehumidifier questions answered in lieu of hurricane disaster

Tuesday, November 6th, 2012
Did you know? Dehumidifiers are often used for disaster relief due to flooding. This large commercial dehumidifier was used when the IRS building in Washington D.C. was flooded to help it dry faster. Many people also use them indoors after painting a room to make it dry faster.

Did you know? Dehumidifiers are often used for disaster relief due to flooding. This large commercial dehumidifier was used when the IRS building in Washington D.C. was flooded to help it dry faster. Many people also use them indoors after painting a room to make it dry faster.

With the tragic onslaught of Hurricane Sandy, there going to be a lot of flooding, mold and water damage. Many of us have seen the shocking photos of flooded Manhattan and New Jersey. While safety and emergency evacuations are the highest priorities, many are now looking ahead to the monumental task of rebuilding and repairing their cities. Heavy-duty commercial dehumidification is a crucial first step in removing flood and water damage. This post is dedicated to recovery and rebuilding for the victims of 2012′s Hurricane Sandy, also known as the “Frankenstorm.” Read more »



Landscape Architecture Q&A with DFC&A

Thursday, November 1st, 2012
Duane F. Christopher, a professional landscape architect working in Rock Hill, SC is our guest for today.

Duane F. Christopher, a professional landscape architect working in Rock Hill, SC is our guest for today.

Ever wish you could gain some professional insight in how to make a liveable and environmentally-friendly space and garden? Today we have a special Q&A with a local professional landscape architect who is a graduate of the prestigious Cornell University, an Ivy League research school in Ithaca, NY. Duane F. Christopher currently owns his own practice in South Carolina and is experienced in sustainability, gardens, residential design, and land planning. Read more »