EP13 – July 1, 2017: Picture Perfect Front Doors!

Painting your front door is easily one of the best “bang for your buck” projects you can tackle around the home. It adds huge curb appeal to your home and, best of all, it’s quick and inexpensive! And yet, we’re often intimidated by the project! We can’t find the right color and we’re nervous about making it look good. Well, don’t worry! It’s easy. And we’ll tell you everything you need to know!

Listen here:

Show notes for Episode 013:

In this opening segment we sit down in the studio with Nick Sargent from Johnson Carpet One in Grandville and he discusses the ins and outs, pros and cons of all types of wood and wood-look flooring.

If you're thinking about a floor project in your home, this is a "must-listen!"

In today's Ask RepcoLite segment, we talk about paint that just won't cover and hide. You know what we're talking about: that bright red paint that takes coat after coat after coat and still look transparent. What's wrong with the paint? Why is this happening?

We'll tell you why it's happening and better yet, how to avoid this common problem in the first place!

It's all about fun in this segment. And delicious food. Rob Cackowski from Heritage Fireplace and Design Center is in the studio and he's dishing out some expert advice that will make sure you're the talk of your next backyard grill out!

Painting your front door is one of the best "bang for your buck" paint projects you can tackle! You'll dramatically improve the curb appeal of your home and, best of all, you'll do it in just a few hours and often for no more than a quart of paint!

 

EP12 – June 24, 2017: Stay Safe!

Yes, this is a Home Improvement Show, but really, how important is a well-decorated and maintained home if every member of our family isn’t there to enjoy it with us? At RepcoLite, we love painting projects. We love decorating. We love a good, “from the ground-up” remodeling project. But none of those things matter when compared to the safety and well-being of the people in our lives.

On today’s show we sit down with Joe Kuhns from Cover Down Consulting and he basically commandeers the show for a half an hour. Joe is a 26-year Navy Seal Veteran and he’s got solid, practical, and potentially life-saving advice for everyone in your home. You do not want to miss this!

Listen here:

Show notes for episode 012:

Home improvement is more than just changing or improving the physical aspects of your home. It's also about changing and improving the lives of the people who live there. And part of improving the lives of yourself and members of your family is safety.

We are excited to be joined in the studio by Joe Kuhns of Cover Down Consulting. Joe is a 26 year Navy SEAL veteran who applies the skills he learned as a SEAL to his everyday life. He has been kind enough to help arm us with the knowledge we need to keep ourselves and our families safe. He has great information on personal (ourselves) and physical (the spaces we have control in) protection that is worth listening to time and time again.

Besides consulting on personal protection, Joe teaches team building and does performance or life training for young men seeking to join the military. For more information on any of the services Cover Down Consulting offers, you can email Joe at jkuhnscoverdown@gmail.com.

Joe Kuhns of Cover Down Consulting mesmerized us in Segment 1, so we asked him to stay for another segment. Luckily he obliged, so we finished our interview with a discussion on keeping our homes and property safe. This is information every family should have!

The internet is full of all kinds of recommendations when it comes to paint storage. And what's really interesting is that these recommendations show up on reputable DIY and Home Repair websites and blogs. And yet, at RepcoLite, we've noticed time and time again that these methods, though wildly popular, often don't work out as well as you'd think.

So in this segment, we tackle the myths and give you some honest-to-goodness paint storage advice. No, it's not gimmicky. Yes, they're a little bland. But on the flipside: they work! Every time.

We took some time recently to get out to the Parade of Homes. And we saw a number of great things that really inspired us. However, we also discovered a couple things that made us rethink a common idea about "color flow" in a home. In this segment, we talk about some things not to do when you're decorating, but also we pile on a number of practical recommendations to help you with your next decorating project!

 

Everyday Items into Easy Christmas Decor!

Yet another guest post from our Super-Hero Decorator Friend, the Purple Stiletto!

I’m dreaming of a white…and cheap….Christmas. The Purple Stiletto has been spending a good deal of time in the Craft Cave (with Christmas music blasting), trying to find the most inexpensive ways to decorate for Christmas. Now, being that this is the Purple Stiletto’s favorite time of year, it is important to have the feeling of Christmas in EVERY room. And that can get quite expensive! That is where common household items and a little bit of creative juice (and
eggnog!) come in handy.

Now, I will say, there had been ideas spinning in my head like ballerinas in tutus for quite a while. I started by gathering the items I already owned.

  • Large bowl? Easy!
  • Pitcher? Yup!
  • Hand towels? Ho ho ho!
  • Mason Jars? Thank goodness I made dinner at home last week!
  • Colander? Yes……..but it’s rather big……..and bright silver…… and if I use that, how am I going to make pasta? I can’t go without pasta until after Christmas! Option #2……… Red Ranger to the rescue! He suggested a trip to the thrift store to look for a colander and any other items that may dress up my ordinary household items. These are the reasons I need him!

With a song in our hearts (or at least in my heart!), we arrived at the first thrift store. If we were lucky, it would be our ONLY thrift store stop. We entered the store with much anticipation and were met with the MOTHERLODE! There was Christmas stuff everywhere! We walked from table to table, looking at all of the different knick-knacks and do-dads. Red Ranger found a bag of fake snow for $1 and some reindeer antlers.

And then I spotted it……shiny and copper……the perfect little colander! And a steal at just $5. We paid for our treasures and returned to the Craft Cave.

I started by folding the hand towels so that only the bottom, decorative portion was showing. I had seen something on Pinterest (a favorite Purple Stiletto website for inspiration) that showed toilet paper with greens coming out of the tube. There is just something about putting toilet paper on display in the bathroom that just doesn’t settle well with me. So my solution was to use hand towels, folded, and then rolled into a tube. The Red Ranger cut sprigs of pine that I put in the top of the towel roll. My bathroom was ready for Christmas. How simple could it be?!

IMG_6774

Next, I tackled my large wood bowl. Now, my intent was to fill the bowl with ornaments in varying shades of blue, white and silver. The colors were not a problem but the enormity of the bowl was! I had quite a few ornaments but not enough for such a large bowl. The Purple Stiletto does not let such pesky problems stand in the way! The solution was simple: place a layer of packing peanuts in the bottom and cover with a fabric napkin. I chose silver because it was more likely to blend in, should it be seen in the space between ornaments. Simple, inexpensive and literally minutes to put together. I was on a roll!

IMG_6812

I did the same thing with my shiny new colander, except I added battery powered, LED micro lights. I picked them up at a home improvement store a while back for about $7. I put the end of the lights up through the holes in the bottom of the colander so the battery box was hidden under it. I added vintage Christmas ornaments that my grandma had given me and Voile! A fabulous kitchen decoration!

IMG_6791

Last, Red Ranger and I tackled the mason jars and pitcher that holds beautiful flowers in the spring and summer. Red Ranger filled the mason jars with the fake snow and then cut tiny sprigs of pine. He also cut larger pine boughs to fill the pitcher. He added the tiny sprigs on top of the fake snow and I added tiny blue and silver ornaments for color. I added blue and green ornaments to the pines in the pitcher and a giant green bow. Our work for the day was done. Time to take a page from Santa’s book and have some milk and cookies!

IMG_6806

That night, I sat with a good book by the fireplace and admired my new decorations. They were my everyday items that were suddenly filled with the magic of Christmas. The Purple Stiletto had done it again—turned something boring into something spectacular! The only thing missing is a festive drink!

Easy Mantel Decor or Table Centerpiece (You Decide!)

IMG_6824Another post from our Super-Hero Decorator guest writer, The Purple Stiletto!

Now, the most obvious basic item was the leftover branches from the bottom of my Christmas tree. They were going to add color and texture to the top of the mantel. I also collected together tea lights, small red and silver Christmas bulbs, unused wine glasses, an empty vase, ribbon, a rhinestone buckle and some sparkly red balls.

I started by laying the branches from my Christmas tree on the mantel. I let them drape over the edge just slightly. Next, I filled the vase with red balls, wrapped black ribbon around the middle and secured with a rhinestone buckle. I placed the vase in the center of the greens, then grabbed the wine glasses. I filled the glasses with red and silver Christmas bulbs and then turned upside down. I arranged the glasses among the branches on either side of the vase. I set tea lights on the bases of the wine glasses and stepped back to admire my handiwork. Fabulous! Now THAT was a mantel worthy of my new stocking!

OK, so I know most people would have stopped there, but I still had ideas that were begging to be used. The Purple Stiletto dreams in glitter and color all the time! So what to do with the remaining mantel idea…

I know! The Red Ranger needs a little holiday cheer! Yes, he has a tree (an artificial one with a pine scented car freshener to make it “smell real”) and lights and some Christmas tidbits here and there but he could really use an amazing mantel too!

I loaded some supplies in my car and dashed through the thickening snow. Under the cover of night, while Red Ranger slept with visions of sugar plums and glitter dancing in his head, I snuck in and worked my magic on his exceptionally dull fireplace.

I, again, began with branches from my Christmas tree. I put a beautiful pillar tree candle in the middle of the branches and began working my way along the mantel. I added large wine glasses with pale blue and silver ornaments, flipped them over on either side of the center candle and added tea lights to the base of the glasses. I followed this with medium, white pillar candles along the length of the mantel, alternated with small glass votives. I scattered the remaining blue and silver ornaments among the greens and candles for a little sparkle. I lit the candles and the effect was breathtaking! It was beautiful! Now, the Red Ranger’s house was dressed for the holidays.

I snuck out, grinning to myself and wondering what the Red Ranger was going to think when he woke up…

As the Purple Stiletto settled into her armchair next to the fire with a glass of wine (in a Christmas glass, of course!), she reflected on how amazing it was that such simple objects could completely transform a mantel. The same items could also be used down the center of a table or buffet, but that was for another day. It was time for the Purple Stiletto to kick off her shoes, put her feet up and relax as the scents and scenes of the season washed over her. How was she ever going to make it better next year…