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The BS* + Beer Show: Lighting Design Strategies

This episode of the BS* + Beer show features lighting design expert and educator David Warfel (author of “Lighting for the Long Term” and “The Lighting Power of LEDs” ), and Jeff Calkins, owner of Calkins Electric Supply Co. The conversation runs from the theoretical to the practical. We learn about the ways in which light (and lack thereof) affects our eyes, mood, and overall wellbeing, and we hear some strategies for optimizing the quality and quantity of light in our homes. David shares some intriguing science and how it has influenced the lighting products market. He describes the state…

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Current Obsessions: Online Goings-On

This last weekend of January, a few things to watch, read, listen to, and shop this weekend—all from the comfort of your kitchen table/armchair/bed: Above: We’re admiring, from afar, The Citizenry’s newly revamped and reopened NYC flagship store in SoHo, designed by LA-based Standard Architecture. Margot is listening to Tree FM, through which you can “tune into forests around the world”—the perfect cooped-up midwinter antidote. We’re eagerly awaiting the launch of Goodee 100—a collaboration between Nordstrom and socially conscious global marketplace (and Remodelista favorite) Goodee, featuring 100 home design wares priced at, yes, $100 and under. Keep an eye out;…

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5 Steps to Quick Compost

Rapid or "hot" composting is a great option for impatient gardeners who don't want to wait the 6 to 12 months it takes for most compost piles to mature. Done right, hot compost can be ready in as little as 14 days. It does take a little extra work, requiring you to shred the materials and manage the pile more actively. But you can't beat the timeline. Here's how to do it: 1. Use equal parts by volume of green and brown materials This will deliver the 30:1 ration of carbon- to nitrogen-rich ingredients you're after. Brown materials include dead…

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A Serene, “Well-Balanced” House for a Violinist and a Physician, Inspired by Vivaldi

In the first days of January, photographer (and longtime Remodelista friend) Laure Joliet emailed us a project she’d captured on a hilltop in the town of Palos Verdes Estates, California. The images showed interiors that felt balanced, elegant, and somehow melodic, if a space could be described that way—a sense that became clear when I emailed with the designer behind it, Beatriz Rose of LA-based Byrdesign. The project is “a well-balanced home for a dynamic couple,” Beatriz writes. “Much of the inspiration came from their very being, as from the onset I sensed a strong creative force behind their subtle…

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Stedsans in the Woods: A Restorative, Carbon-Neutral, Off-the-Grid Getaway in the Swedish Forest

This winter—due to a very of-the-moment yearning for lagom-like comfort and also for new places to explore that aren’t my apartment—I’ve been thinking a lot about Sweden, imagining a winter trip spent in the snowy woods, lighting candles, being quiet. One frequent site of my daydreams is Stedsans in the Woods, “a resort in Halland, Sweden, with an off the grid restaurant,” which I stumbled upon on Instagram and have been returning to—through my phone, for now at least—ever since. This “resort,” though, has no juice fasts, no trendy spa treatments, no fancy polished guest rooms. Instead it offers rejuvenation…

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Restoring a Butcher-Block Countertop

Step 1: Bleach Mildew Stains Photo by Kolin Smith Stir a teaspoon of powdered oxygen bleach (sodium percarbonate) into a cup of hot water until it dissolves. Wearing a nitrile glove, dip a stiff, nylon-bristle scrub brush into the solution and scrub the wood for a couple of minutes. Redip as needed to keep the surface wet. The mix will foam slightly, then subside. Wait 10 minutes for the bleach to work, then rinse thoroughly with a sponge and cool water. The wood will lighten as it dries, but if it’s still stained, mix up a new batch of bleach…

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