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Green Remodeling

New: A non-toxic primer from Kilz

 Q: What’s even better than blocking stains with KILZ primer-sealer? A: Doing so without poisoning yourself. I’ve been a fan of KILZ stain-blocking primer for [...]

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Remodeling With Allergies in Mind

From the Indianapolis Star: Question: How can I make sure the materials I use in my remodeling project are safe for a family member with allergies? Answer: The best place to [...]

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‘Ruins of the Second Gilded Age’

Not too long ago, a photo essay was posted on the New York Times website, and then quickly removed. And that means you probably didn’t see it. The title was [...]

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Are solar panels ugly?

In Santa Monica, California, home of the really pretty people, solar panels are fine as long as you hide them from view. That is according to a blog posting at the L.A. [...]

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What’s Up With the Blue Wood?

If you’ve noticed some houses in your area being built or fixed up with blue- colored framing lumber, roof trusses and sheathing panels, you may think the Smurfs came [...]

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Eco Decorating Is Suddenly Hip

I guess my friend and co-author Kitty Bartholomew is a visionary. For many years, long before it was eco-hip, she was finding new uses for old things that have served their [...]

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The Ipe Conundrum — Green or Not Green?

For several years, ipe (pronounced EE-pay) decking from Brazilian hardwood trees has been the darling of green builders. This beautiful wood looks like mahogany, and it does [...]

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Bathroom Makeover Was Due

Toward the end of her pregnancy, Cindy Fitzgerald had two goals: to remodel the bathroom where she would care for the new baby and to get it done before she delivered. [...]

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Keeping it Cool in Claremont, Calif.

Deb and Vern Jahnke, pictured here, are way too nice to brag. So let me do it for them. Even on the hottest days, their home in Claremont stays cool and comfortable without [...]

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Cushions You Can Compost?

Does this bug you, too? You have a pillow, blanket or other textile that is clearly past its prime and too worn for the Goodwill. But you hate to see it take the slow ride to [...]

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Hot or not hot? Tin can wall covering

This wall covering made from tin can tops, as seen in the New York Times, has a certain appeal. But there’s something a little creepy about it, as well. Or is it just [...]

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The Wonderful World of Greenwashing

How many ways are there to greenwash home-improvement products? To make toxic junk sound green? To put lipstick on a pig? So very many! Here are a few: • The packaging is [...]

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Dispatch from the kitchen and bath show

Kitchen designer Susan Serra, who writes an ever-inspiring blog called The Kitchen Designer, just got back from the Kitchen/Bath Industry Show (KBIS) in Chicago and offered [...]

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Top 10 home builder goes greener

Beazer Homes, one of the country’s 10 biggest home builders, announced that all new homes it builds will include features that contribute to water and energy savings, [...]

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