Home & Leisure



Do It Yourself or Not: Install a dimmer switch

Who knew the tried-and-true toggle light switch is not nearly as easy to use as a dimmer switch that you operate by sliding your finger up and the light goes on; slide it down the pad and the light dims. At first dimmers were promoted for use in dining areas to lower the light and create a quiet mood and ambiance for dining. Today they’re a ...Read more

Do It Yourself or Not: Install a marble floor

New floor tiles in a room make a dramatic change, whether it’s modest or high-end material. A new surface creates a backdrop for furnishing while it also unifies the space. To see what flooring materials are available, take a walk through a home or design center to see the many choices to consider.

Marble’s durability makes it a popular ...Read more

Do It Yourself or Not: Install kitchen cabinets

If remodeling your kitchen is on your priority list of home improvements, you won’t be surprised to know a large chunk of money will be the cost of the cabinets and their installation. Think of kitchen base and wall cabinets as built-in furniture that must be designed to fit along the walls throughout the space and around appliances.

No ...Read more

Do It Yourself or Not: Paint a room

The best bang for a DIY buck is to paint a room, because paint is the least expensive fast fix-up for a facelift that we know. A new splash of paint brightens dull walls and creates a fresh, new feeling in a room and a uniform backdrop for furnishings. This is a no-brainer job, even for a beginning DIYer, because it's goof-proof; the paint and ...Read more

Do It Yourself or Not: Install polystyrene molding

Install molding and change plain-Jane walls to transform any room with a distinct style and mood. Molding is an architectural element that’s always noticed whether it’s installed on walls at the ceiling and baseboard, or as a chair rail or outlining doors and windows.

Traditionally molding was made of plaster and wood, but today a popular ...Read more

Do It Yourself or Not: Install a wall-mounted door

A pocket door has long been a solution to create privacy when a traditional door doesn’t work. In some tight spaces there’s no swinging room for the door because of furniture or the door swings into a passageway. That works nicely when the walls are drywall, and the pocket door can neatly slide into the wall cavity. The challenge is walls ...Read more

Do It Yourself or Not: Install recessed lighting

We’ve used recessed lighting fixtures in many houses because they’re installed flush with the ceiling and provide illumination in an understated way. The fixture is a popular choice of designers because it’s a simple, yet stylish lighting solution. For example, specialty small, recessed lights are an attractive way to highlight artwork in ...Read more

Do It Yourself or Not: Replace a door latch set

If you have an annoying door knob and handle that is loose or not working, you’ll be surprised at the wall of interior door latch sets you’ll find sold at a home center. That’s because the ordinary doorknob has been elevated to a design feature — not just hardware that opens and closes a door. And if you walk through a model home, you’...Read more

Do it Yourself or Not: Install wire shelving

There’s no excuse for having a closet jammed full of your stuff, because wire storage components are readily available and easy to install. Add a few roll-out baskets, drawers and racks, and you’ll be surprised at how you can create order and organization to a closet. The components are sold in a wide range of sizes and custom configurations...Read more

Do It Yourself or Not: Remove wallpaper

Removing wallpaper is a good example of on-the-job training, because it’s a process you learn as you go around the walls of a room pulling, scraping and tearing off an unwanted wallcovering. The tools and materials you need are inexpensive for this grunt work, which can be tedious, messy and time consuming. That makes it a good job for a ...Read more

Do It Yourself or Not: Install a battery-operated smoke detector

A smoke detector does just what it says — detecting smoke long before you can — so having several installed in different areas of your home is important. The easiest type to install is battery-operated, and the more difficult is the hard-wired device, which should be installed by an electrician. The experts agree that it’s important to ...Read more

Do It Yourself or Not: Paint a wall mural

Think of your wall as a giant page in a coloring book and you get to add the color. With a mural wall kit, you can create a whimsical, one-of-a-kind kid’s room decor using a paint-by-number pattern and transfer paper. This is an alternative to hanging wallpaper that gives a room a distinct personality and makes it special. We found a nice ...Read more

Do It Yourself or Not: Install a stair runner

To create a finished staircase and prevent the noisy clatter of footsteps up and down the stairs, a carpet runner is the solution. The carpeting adds warmth and comfort to your steps, and it is designed and sized to fit on a stairway.

You’ll find stair runners at carpeting retailers and home improvement centers in a nice selection of colors, ...Read more



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