Javimami's Profile

Display Name: Javimami
Member Since: 7/24/13

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I forgot to mention that if you want to keep the wall colors period, check out Sherwin Williams' historic collection, particularly the Arts and Crafts line:


To Paint or Not To Paint Our Abundance of Wood Trim? Good Questions
4/22/14 09:46 AM

Another vote for keeping it original and am a firm believer that you are the caretaker of this house for the time you will live in it and hand it over to the next person. These older homes have the unpainted look in the entertaining rooms because it was very expensive to have the beautiful wood trim. If this were bedrooms or bathrooms, I would be indifferent, but the main floor and first rooms you see should be kept as close to original as possible.

The house has made it this far without the trim being painted. Try lighter, cool colors for the walls and furniture. That should help brighten it up.

At least live in it for one year before you decide to paint the trim white. It may grow on you.

"Love the house you're in."

To Paint or Not To Paint Our Abundance of Wood Trim? Good Questions
4/22/14 09:23 AM

My husband is from Central America, so we use this all the time. It's basically sugar cane juice that is boiled to be able to dehydrate it enough to form the cone shape, but as close as you can get to the natural state of cane sugar. Basically, white sugar is this stuff put in a centrifuge, from which molasses is extracted. Brown sugar is simple white sugar with molasses added to it. So this is the REAL DEAL and has an extra dimension of flavor that you just can't get from processed brown sugar.

Use it as a substitute for dark brown sugar by grating it with a box grater. Use it as molasses by adding a little water and boiling it. Make a simple syrup as someone suggested already.

Alton Brown uses it in his chewy chocolate chip cookie recipe as a substitute for brown sugar. Definitely worth the extra work of grating it.

Make sure you buy good quality piloncillo - we have found rocks and other strange things in it before, so always go for the middle road or higher priced piloncillo at the store. Not worth a trip to the dentist office!

What Can I Do With Piloncillo? Good Questions
4/18/14 05:07 PM

I used to use them (got my first one free from the dorm garbage room during move-out), but they are so expensive to keep buying the replacements and never really cleaned anything (even after 3 replacement pads per room, it was still dirty). When we lived in Europe, I got a "mop head" that is like a broomhead without the bristles, but instead has little "teeth" that grip a highly absorbent towel, microfiber cloth, etc. They are great, and take up no space, and I can re-use them. Cheap investment.
I received a Shark Steamer as a gift, and like it too, but only use it after I clean with the mop, and not on the hardwood floors.
I wouldn't recommend a swiffer (at least not the wet jet one) - just money down the drain. And I don't know what chemicals are in the wet jet liquid.

Are Swiffers Really As Good As They Claim? Good Questions
3/28/14 09:23 AM

My mom has caned chairs from back in the 70s and, after three kids, they needed re-caning. She took a class at the local community college, and they look great. Definately need time and patience though. Maybe there is something like that in your area? Or try craigslist to find someone who can do it for less or can teach you?

Are J & J Kohn Chairs Worth the Caning Expense? Good Questions
3/17/14 10:26 AM

I also like the minimalistic look with the pop of color. Well done.

@lemonadefish: We have a similar rug from Ikea in my son's room (but don't know if it's the same one):


Before & After: Finn's Bright and Airy Nursery Transformation
2/13/14 05:25 PM

I second the Holly Aiken diaper bags. Probably the best gift I received, still using 6 years later as a computer messenger bag, looks as good as new. And they come in neutral enough colors that dad isn't embarassed to carry it!

She'll also make it in any color you want, just giver her a call.


Alison's List: Baby Goods I'm Glad I Bought & Ones I Wish I Hadn't
2/13/14 09:25 AM

You can find a lot of information on particular lines of furniture at http://retrorenovation.com/. From the home page, in the Google Simply type in the maker of the furniture ("Broyhill", "Drexel" or "Lane" for example) and you will find lots of information, such as scans of original catalogs, ideas on restoring them, etc.

Also, if you can't find the maker on the furniture, Furnish Me Vintage (http://furnishmevintage.com/category/bedroom/) keeps an online listing of all their sold items, so you can use the images to see what you have (the link I have here is for bedroom furniture, but you can select other rooms or types of furniture to search different categories).

Before & After: Claire's Contrasting Credenza Makeover
1/13/14 12:01 PM

I agree this should have been kept original, or at least sanded and stained as close to the original finish to get rid of scratches, stains, etc. This is a Broyhill Premier Sculptra piece, which I collect, and it's a shame these solid, well built pieces made in the USA of quality materials (real walnut veneer and solid wood construction) are just painted over. btw, I would have been soooo happy to find this for $30. But I guess I also have to agree that what you do to your own stuff is your own business. Sigh.

Before & After: Claire's Contrasting Credenza Makeover
1/11/14 01:51 PM

Oh, the memories of living in Europe and not having a dryer! We lived in Italy for three years and had to learn to line dry everything. We used a slightly different style that takes up more vertical space (link below, Ikea also has a similar style, though I think the Gimi is better quality and has wheels and hooks to hang clothes on hangers) and I insisted that we bring it back to the US with us. However, since coming back to the states, we have been too lazy to line dry - to be truly efficient you need to do a load a day - you can't wait for laundry day. I think this has given me inspiration to line dry at least a load a week on my drying racks.



Reasons to Air Dry Laundry This Winter
(and 5 Racks You'll Love)

1/7/14 08:46 AM

I went to the Ikea near me 2 weeks ago in College Park, MD, (suburb of DC) and they had a couple of bolts of last year's fabric christmas tree (you need 2 yards, so about $15) and they also have a new option that is ready-to-hang on a curtain rod (http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/10254435/) for about $13. However, I wasn't able to find the new one in the store (but I didn't look very hard and really wanted last year's version anyways), but looking on Ikea's website, it says it's in stock there.
We have a very small home, but, sadly, my husband didn't like the idea, so I'm going to hang it on my cubicle wall at work. Instead we bought a behemoth of a tree, but it's so beautiful. Who cares, it's only a month!

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree!
You're Way Too Big For My House! Christmas Trees & Alternatives for Small Space Dwellers

11/22/13 08:18 AM

I'm no expert, but, to me, the way the pattern repeats on the top makes me suspect it's veneer.

One way to make veneer is to use the trunk as a rotary lathe - you turn the trunk and a sharp blade cuts off a thin sheet, so you get a repeating pattern of where stems and branches were, etc. Think of unwrapping aluminum foil.

If it's a very thin veneer, be careful. If you refinish, do it by hand, sand in the direction of the grain. Do not use an orbital disk sander, or you'll risk sanding through the veneer. Good luck! What a great find, it's a beautiful table.

Is This a Solid Wood or Veneer Tabletop? Good Questions
9/20/13 07:52 AM

The problem with open and overly-large showers is they are so cold. My mother's last apartment had a large (5x5?) foot shower with door and it was so large, it was hard to get warm in there - you had to constantly run the shower to generate enough steam to keep it tolerable. For me, a smaller shower (around 3x3) with a door is the way to go. And better for the environment.

Set Your Shower Free! Open Shower Renovation Inspiration
7/24/13 07:42 AM