Laura Gaskill


Location
Providence, RI  
About me:
Houzz Contributor. I cover topics ranging from decorating ideas, product picks, Houzz tours, and interviews with designers and architects, to the monthly home maintenance checklist. My favorite pieces to write tend to center around the emotional aspects of home and savoring life's simple pleasures.

Learn more, and follow my adventures in creating a warm and cozy home at http://www.lolalina.com/
My favorite style:
Beachy, vintage, midcentury modern. Heartfelt and handmade. 
My next house project:
Painting our front porch and door. 
Laura Gaskill is following the redesign company
Yesterday
Laura Gaskill likes a comment on an ideabook

9 Ways to Appreciate Your House Just as It Is

Look on the bright side — or that soothingly dark corner — to feel genuine gratitude for all the comforts of your home Full Story
     Comment   Yesterday
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janetharry
I just loved this article, thank you
Yesterday at 8:22AM     
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Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

12 Ways to Make That Inspiration Board Truly Inspiring

Is a plain corkboard stopping up your creative flow? Stir the imagination with these creative ideas for pin boards and more Full Story
     Comment   on Monday
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bethlanger
Inspiration Boards are or should be deeper Having a design for inspiration boards takes it to an uncomfortable level for me. The truth of inspiration boards are more than design. Inspiration comes in so many ways. I'm a designer, so please know that I get that aspect of inspiration. We would not have inspired design if our clients didn't have heart and goals and admiration for nature and the arts---blah blah. I hope you get my point. Blessings to what inspires us all!!
7 hours ago   
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summilux
@summery- if you saw The Mechanic you'd recognize the additional association "Inspiration Board" triggered :-)
2 hours ago   
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Laura Gaskill is following Shift Interiors
on Sunday
Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

8 Ways to Get a Handle on the Junk Drawer

Don’t sweat the small stuff — give it a few drawers of its own, sorted by type or task Full Story
     Comment   on Sunday
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russ337
I think we dealt with “scoopy-stirry” and “cutty-pokey” as "longs" and "shorts." Same idea, but fewer syllables. But we keep a sub-set of longs in countertop canisters within easy reach. Sometimes you need them fast!
3 hours ago   
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Cheryl Briant
good idea
3 hours ago   
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Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

Guest Picks: 20 Fun Finds for Family Dinners

Make dinnertime enjoyable for the whole family with these playful utensils, colorful napkins, helpful add-ons and more Full Story
     Comment   last Friday
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vivianperrychild
All 3 of my grandchildren have TripTrap chairs are not stools but chairs, that these kids will take with them when they leave home as adults: their first kitchen chairs... We have another Stoke chair we use for our computer but works just as well as a dinning room chair.
14 hours ago   
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ferrelli
We have two trip trap chairs that my daughters used as little ones. At this point, the girls are 36 and 32. I am happy to say my grandson uses one of them now. He loves it! At 3 1/2 he is quite happy In the chair that his Oma "built" him. He climbs on it by himself and can sit close up to the table like everyone else at dinner time. Like his mom, he'll use it for lots of years because it is adjustable and will grow with him.
6 hours ago     
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Laura Gaskill bookmarked an ideabook

A Child's Playhouse Brings the Circus to Town

A grandfather set out to build a traditional caravan for his granddaughter to play in. Then his project took a whimsical turn Full Story
     Comment   last Friday
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Diane G.
Whimsical, wonderful and well-worth the effort. It will truly be cherished!
(I hope my husband will love our first grandchild enough to do something like this! He DID build an awesome fort for our sons that everyone copied,)
on Sunday at 9:18AM     
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luckystar
What an amazing and precious family heirloom. It is so beautiful and no doubt will be treasured, loved and enjoyed by many generations to come.
on Sunday at 10:22AM     
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Laura Gaskill is following Barbara Purdy Design Inc. and Planning Pretty
last Thursday
Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

10 Reasons to Love Banquettes (Not Just in the Kitchen)

They can dress up a space or make it feel cozier. Banquettes are great for kids, and they work in almost any room of the house Full Story
     Comment   September 10, 2014
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lulyon
We built in a banquette for our kitchen last year by creating a box bay window for one of the benches. This freed up space in the kitchen so that a converted buffet became an island to separate dining end from kitchen. The table is larger than we wanted but was a fantastic find at $300CA. There are gliders on the pedestal bottoms to slide it easily, and no one gets stuck in the middle at the back. I find that most people really enjoy relaxing against cushions (I've put in more) and when the family gathers, the space actually seems to bring us closer. Everyone relaxes, they don't panic about moving, and overall the vibe has been great since we've put it in. I'd incorporate a banquette in every kitchen from now on. You need to get good quality foam and choose comfortable fabrics.
12 hours ago   
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Mohamed Elhdad
Hi
8 hours ago   
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Laura Gaskill is following DesignLaB Interiors, Valerie Wilcox: Photographer and Janel Holiday Interior Design
September 10, 2014
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tw123456
Ok Emily, one junk drawer is an easy yes!, but, how about a junk closet, pantry, coat closet, basement,.......
on Monday at 5:46PM     
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PRO
Interior Affairs -- Vickie Daeley
yes I do have one junk drawer
on Monday at 9:45PM   
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Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

5 Ways to Pare Down Your Stuff — Before It Gets in the Door

Want to free up some room around the house? Rethink gift giving, give yourself a shopping mantra and just say, ‘No, thank you’ to freebies Full Story
     Comment   September 8, 2014
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susanporch
When I'm out shopping and I see something I "want", I ask myself "do I "need it", or do I just "want" it?...............another trick I use when I'm contemplating a purchase, is to say this mantra; "When in doubt, go without"!
17 hours ago     
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cajunsma
While I do know I have a problem with paper, I'll be moving into a smaller home soon thus I will be DELETING a lot of everything very soon. So very happy about this move. :D
13 hours ago     
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Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

10 Reasons to Make a Splash With Tomato Red

You won’t duck at these tomatoes. See how bold red shades can play up architecture, light up a dark spot and add drama Full Story
     Comment   September 5, 2014
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yogapaws
I love my red room.... on my third red car- VW Jetta. I thought it was Tomato Red... but it is Tornado Red. LOL
on Sunday at 12:29PM     
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zweiback
Mmmmm, mmmmm good! :D
on Monday at 11:42AM   
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Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

Simple Pleasures: Treasuring the Gift of Grandparents

You can enrich your family life by bringing generations together for shared meals, quilting projects, storytelling Full Story
     Comment   September 4, 2014
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dreacorator
Btw, thought of another gift idea: discontinued or hard to find beauty products. Women ( of any age!) have a tendency to stick with what they know when it comes to beauty: makeup, perfume, hair products. Sometimes it's as easy as not selling in store, just online, or you can do some digging on websites that sell specifically discontinued items, or calling the manufacturer/ company themselves and they will send them. I've tried and it's worked!
last Friday at 10:24PM   
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revss
If you're looking for products from an earlier time, check out THE VERMONT COUNTRY STORE.com.
(all small letters.) They have beauty products ranging from Evening in Paris cologne to Tangee lipstick and more! Fun to browse. Also have clothing that's hard-to-find anymore. Great
gowns, robes too, which I've ordered for older friends. Good sales too!
last Friday at 10:52PM     
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Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

Create Your Own Checklist for a Well-Stocked Kitchen

Personalize the kitchen with your own must-haves from our list of top cooking tools, small appliances, pots, pans and more Full Story
     Comment   September 3, 2014
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Linus Reimann-Kaißer
lauraoffice: Then watch him eat his rare steak when he doesn't use pans or an oven... :)
Yesterday at 2:32AM   
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drpl2010
I don't think I should go near a cooking store because I have already collected almost everything on the list, except the special knife and gloves for shellfish. My kitchen also includes a pressure cooker, tortilla maker, electric waffle maker and lots of flexible and regular cutting boards to cut meat and veggies on separate surfaces, various colanders and mesh strainers, the good kitchen scissors (comes apart for cleaning) that came with a knife set I bought 20 years ago, a vegetable peeler, cheese slicer, a cake decorating set and a pizza wheel or two. When I've moved in the past, I have had no trouble giving away furniture but I've never been able to part with my kitchen stuff. I use an armoire as well as all the kitchen cabinets and counters to store everything.
Yesterday at 10:10AM     
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Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

Inspiring Book Nooks Welcome Young Readers

Encourage a lifelong love of reading with inviting and cozy places where kids can burrow into books Full Story
     Comment   September 1, 2014
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kshc
One of my favorite projects done at my work was for a 2nd grade teacher that repurposed an old claw foot tub from her father's field. We sandblasted and painted it inside and out. She filled it with pillows to use as a reading area for her students. It was beautiful and the kids love it.
September 7, 2014 at 12:59PM     
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alijamra
سلام زیباست
September 10, 2014 at 4:19AM   
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Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

To-Dos: Your September Home Checklist

Boost the comforts of home for fall with a few of these ideas for stocking up and staying cozy Full Story
     Comment   September 1, 2014
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victoran
Any ideas on how to get a fresh smelling dryer? Seems after drying all the "guy" shirts...the dryer smells like old socks.
last Saturday at 10:17PM   
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pbsch
Oxford007… Love the comment about stocking up the bar! And, Laura, you're right about making the family room cozy. That's my goal this month: we've got dark tile, dark walls, and dark cabinetry, so warming it up is a challenge. I've got a start with red sofas, silver shag area rugs, and silver throw pillows.
on Sunday at 7:39AM   
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Laura Gaskill likes an ideabook

Houzz Products: Innovative Things to Make You Say, ‘Wow’

Meet the problem solvers, the delightful finds and other models of great, creative design Full Story
     Comment   August 28, 2014
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scottybeez
$39 for a stapler............. but it's yellow!

Still no.
August 31, 2014 at 7:31PM     
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wendy68
Have the clock and love it. Could watch it for hours. It's like a sculpture, sometimes a dancer that takes a new position on the wall everytime I look up.
September 1, 2014 at 6:44AM     
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Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

Tempted to Try Wallpaper? 10 Tips for Finding the Right Pattern

Before you lay down a lot of cash, sit down with this advice for getting a wallpaper you’ll love for years Full Story
     Comment   August 28, 2014
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PRO
Mosaico Digitale
Mosaico Digitale is the new alternative material to the old classical wall paper.Mosaico digitale is a resin mosaic tile.Mosaico digitale has introduce a new material the resin.The digital mosaics is created on a resin film on which the original image is printed.We can cover any shape size and color and content of surface for both interiors and exteriors .Surface like wood glass metal drywall .The resin material giving us to the possibility to make a fragmentation of any image and reproduce it a new mosaic concept can be applied to any surface to decorate.
For more information please contact
sandro@mosaicodigitale.com
www.mosaicodigitale.com
September 2, 2014 at 3:47PM     
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Custom Color and Art
An important point made in the article is putting up a sample and living with it. Seeing it at different times of day and weather, viewing it from another room, all critical to getting a feel for the pattern and color. Good article!
September 4, 2014 at 8:46PM   
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Laura Gaskill commented on an ideabook

Checklists for a Well-Stocked Home

Thank-you notes, first-aid kit, clear glass vases ... It’s easy to go with the flow when you’ve got the items you need at hand Full Story
     Comment   August 28, 2014
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Laura Gaskill
Jessica - Great point about hurricane/disaster preparedness supplies!!
August 28, 2014 at 4:57AM     
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tessmail
Thank you, everyone, for these great lists! I'm going to not only use them myself but for others as gift ideas. I will even go so far as to print them for our children, young adults, who are setting up their household. If there's something on the list they know they would never use, they can always strike through it, but the lists will be a great starting point. As many have, I have put some of these things in place already but others ....well, I can't wait to!
I do keep a notebook for assorted occasion cards and lots of thank you cards. There's just something extra special about getting a card in the mail. Again, thank you everyone for the many great ideas!
September 7, 2014 at 2:17AM   
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LeBlanc Design
Laura- thank you for featuring our Cliffside Perch Bedroom. What a great list to have with the holidays approaching!
last Thursday at 6:25AM     
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Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

Simple Pleasures: Plan a Rejuvenating Retreat Right at Home

Crave a quiet day or a weekend devoted to yoga? Design a mini retreat without going anywhere Full Story
     Comment   August 25, 2014
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sensiblegal
I am glad that the article acknowledges the difficulty of doing this with small children. Mine are too young to leave me alone. If I asked them to leave me alone they would not understand and would be terribly hurt. The article had good advice for making this work even in situations like mine: it doesn't need to be all day; sneak in mini-retreats when no one else is in the house, etc. This I can do. Thanks for a good article.
September 3, 2014 at 8:50AM     
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gmicute
You had me until grocery shopping. Not much of a retreat if I'm making all the food. ;)
September 4, 2014 at 8:12PM   
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Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

Art Deco, Art Nouveau, Arts and Crafts: What’s the Difference?

If the zigzag and swirly designs of the past leave your head spinning, these descriptions will straighten you right out Full Story
     Comment   August 24, 2014
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Terry Bostwick Studio Furniture
Ah, ruffled feathers. Apologies first, eclecticedwardian, your academic offering was, and is appreciated from the beginning, as I stated early on. And I don’t question your veracity nor passions. But forgive our muddling, it is difficult to not be human. There is much for all of us to learn, that is what makes my creative 40 year professional life interesting, I have always been a sucker for my personal and professional enlightenment. That is why I chose to commit myself to course work in both architecture and interior design - not to become one of those, nor a doctor or lawyer, but to further my ability to bring beautiful objects to those who wish to live in a beautiful home, or office, too. (including many who prowl the halls of Houzz.com). Too bad this conversation isn’t sitting around a coffee table over a glass of wine, we might understand each other better, and smile.

But I might add, the conversation led to other thoughts about the impact those early architects and designers had on all of us today - the mash up I spoke of (not what you might find at a Dead concert, thanks). Much of my part in this conversation concerns my own selfish interest in furniture (and other objects too) design throughout history. Many of the people we refer to during those incredible design times were not architects but still had a tremendous impact on western design and contributed to that mash up. And bumbling was hardly my thought, rather, once again, it is more about the discovery we are all impacted by on a daily basis if we are open to learn, by what we see others doing….even Wright and Sullivan must have had open minds and eyes or they never would have grown into their incredible offering.

My own history also has taught me about a myopic malaise with many architects, designers, furniture makers, manufacturers, and on and on, today, who only respond and duplicate work to the current trend - with no regard for what our antecedents chose to commit their lives to, creativity and exploration. It is more about money to be had than passions to explore. Many home owners/consumers aren’t aware of what they could have, and rely solely on what Ethan Allen has on their showroom floor, and don’t have the time to be passionate as you seemed to be about historical and scholarly study. So they love to read these articles Houzz provides, hoping to enhance there homes. I enjoy the articles myself.

To be clear, I study and listen to remain engaged as a designer and maker. Unfortunately most of my young and “old” furniture maker peers (and architects and interior designers, too), don’t think they needed no stinkin’ art history either, sad - all I heard from the architecture and interior design students was complaints about why they had to take those courses you taught, and how hard they were. And have seen one too many furniture maker with glazed eyes hoping soon t be done with my thoughts. Also sad. As for some of my professors in those courses I took, I seriously appreciated their passions (and what they were teaching me), as they appreciated mine while having me teach workshops not only for the students, but for their own edification on what makes a good piece of furniture - something they had little knowledge of, beyond Knoll. Both structurally and proportionally - what is the difference between a mass produced object and one that is thoughtfully created as uniquely suited to the client, and will last a hundred years? And I can’t count the number of architecture grads who have come to me for a minimum wage job to learn what I do.

So, we learn, and we grow from the mash up that time and discussion lays on our plate if we are open. But thanks for the clarification. Oh, and thanks for enjoying my furniture (that always feels good even after all these years taking chances), I’m grateful for having had the opportunity follow my passions and to spend my life doing what my surgeon father always wanted to do. Now I’m going to go take care of my fea
September 4, 2014 at 8:17AM   
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vygriffin
I love Art Nouveau. I have decorated my home around some wonderful art nouveau antiques. I found two iron panels and had a front door custom made to incorporate them.
September 6, 2014 at 5:48AM     
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Laura Gaskill is following Simply Grove
August 21, 2014
Laura Gaskill published an ideabook

10 Recipes for Shabby Chic Style

Rustic furniture, floral fabrics, sparkling chandeliers. Here are 10 easy ways to bring the romantic cottage look into your home Full Story
     Comment   August 21, 2014
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Leslie Brooks
My mom and I just had a discussion about shabby chic. We love it in other peoples houses. We just can't make it look good. If I tried to do it, it would look like a bad thrift store.
August 30, 2014 at 6:29PM   
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bigredkate
I have always made my own slipcovers so that I can take them off - we have golden retrievers so washing the slipcovers is a regular job. I have never had a problem keeping them in place. It might be because I use a good heavy upholstery fabric.
September 1, 2014 at 11:52PM   
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Laura Gaskill likes a comment on an ideabook

Guest Picks: Equestrian Chic

Go on the hunt for these furniture pieces, accessories, artwork and lighting options that conjure the beauty of horses Full Story
   Comment   August 20, 2014
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kennedytarheel
We use real horse bits (that have gone through the dishwasher) as paper weights on the desk.
November 13, 2012 at 11:04AM     
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Laura Gaskill likes a comment on an ideabook

Catching Up With the Queen of Shabby Chic

Rachel Ashwell defined a style embraced by countless fans over the past 25 years. Find out what she’s turning her sights to now Full Story
     Comment   August 20, 2014
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irishmaori
Shabby chic is not a style, rather a state of mind. Like Rachel it's timeless, clean and very beautiful.
August 20, 2014 at 6:02AM     
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Laura Gaskill commented on an ideabook

Home-Buying Checklist: 20 Things to Consider Beyond the Inspection

Quality of life is just as important as construction quality. Learn what to look for at open houses to ensure comfort in your new home Full Story
     Comment   August 19, 2014
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Laura Gaskill
bachbabe - Good one!!
August 19, 2014 at 8:48AM     
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lc29
bighouse169, you bring up a good point about checking cell phone reception. My sister's new house has metal framing and foil sheathed insulation, they have to walk outside to get a cell phone signal.
We once rented a house a couple of blocks away from the 101 freeway in LA, we couldn't hear traffic noise........but, LAPD and the local news stations love their helicopters! So if there is a car chase or a big accident the copters will circle around the entire neighborhood trying to get the perfect video for the news. Morning rush hour was the worst, I'd try to catch a few extra winks after a cross country trip and the helicopters would be circling over the house. Now I live close to the beach instead of the freeway, but those stupid helicopters have followed me to fly over the beach on summer weekends, can't win!
on Monday at 9:31PM     
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Amanda Rogers
Be sure to check the water source. If it's well water, get it tested. If it's municipal water, check the water quality reports and find out where the water comes from. Where I live in the California, the next town over has very hard water that is a mixture of Delta water (pollutants and pesticides have to be removed) and well water. Residents there have to get water softeners and can still have problems with the water corroding plumbing and appliances. Whereas, the town I live in gets it water straight from the mountains. It's much cleaner and doesn't have the hardness issues. Also, with the drought problems in California and other areas, make sure that the water source is reliable. Some small communities have already ran out of water making their properties worthless if they want to sell. If the house is on well water, does a nearby farm also draw from the same groundwater basin? If so, you may find yourself running out of water. It's already happened in some areas of the state.
on Monday at 10:20PM     
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Laura Gaskill commented on an ideabook

15 Key Pieces for Modern Farmhouse Style

Get that homey feel while staying of the moment with these modern takes on country classics Full Story
     Comment   August 18, 2014
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Laura Gaskill
Re: modern quilts -- There are many extremely talented artisans working today who make heirloom-worthy handmade quilts using age-old techniques out of high quality materials, and put their own twist design and color. Those are the quilts I am referring to in the article, and they are built to last just as long as old quilts.
August 18, 2014 at 11:16AM     
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Creative Kitchens-Heather Graham
Great article Laura. I grew up on a farm and so I'm drawn to many aspects of the farmhouse "style". I have a studio apartment with slab door cabinets and built-ins, but my murphy bed is covered in the quilts and afghans my grandmothers made for me, and my 1970's no-style brick ranch has shaker style furniture (made more "modern" with Ikea knobs) and a bed with a chenille bedspread. My grandmother, who had the not so glamorous job when she was young of slaughtering chickens, has her house decorated with roosters, and my parents, who raise horses and cows, have both animals in their artwork and decor. Personally (and I'm an interior designer) my least favorite "style" is a completely, professionally designed home or space with nothing that reflects the personality and lifestyle of the homeowner...
August 30, 2014 at 8:26AM   
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jilliehj
Thank you for finally putting a name to a style I have always been drawn to!
August 30, 2014 at 4:08PM   
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Reviews by Laura Gaskill (1)

Review for D. S. Brennan Photography:

Diana's nature-inspired art photography is gorgeous. From small nature study prints to the oversize works on canvas, each piece tells its own little story. I ha...
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