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As a midcentury modern design fan, I’ve always dreamed of traveling around the country with a vintage travel trailer in tow. Just picture sipping on a martini outside this stylish 1961 Holiday House trailer:

1961 Pink Holiday House Trailer on HGTV's Design Blog - Design Happens

1961 Pink Holiday House Trailer; Image Courtesy OldTrailer.com

And I’m not alone: Preserving, restoring and enjoying these pieces of history is a growing trend. One amazing place to see these beauties? The Vintage Travel Trailer Show, taking place February 21 and 22 as part of Palm Springs Modernism Week, will showcase 40+ midcentury “tin cans.” Can’t make it to California? Here are some inspiring vintage trailers perfect for Wednesday dreaming.

Adorable Vintage Trailers That Will Make You Want to Hit the Road Immediately

Image Courtesy Vintage Revivals

The Nugget: Mandi of Vintage Revivals completely transformed this tiny, run-down camp trailer, from the midcentury-inspired exterior pattern to the updated cabinetry to the yellow stovetop. See Every Detail Here >>

Vintage Camper Kitchen - See More Vintage Trailers at HGTV's Design Happens Blog

Image Courtesy Vintage Revivals

6 MORE MUST-SEE VINTAGE TRAILERS

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Congratulations to this week’s winner, Darla!

Can you guess which water feature belongs in this lush garden?

Decorate This Space

Type A, B or C in the comments section, and we’ll reveal the answer tomorrow. One lucky winner will win a $100 gift card from Zazzle.com. You don’t have to guess correctly for a chance to win.

Choose, A, B or C

You may only comment once to be considered, and you don’t have to purchase anything to win; a purchase will not increase your chances of winning. Odds depend on total number of entries. Void where prohibited by law. Only open to legal residents of 50 U.S., D.C. or Puerto Rico, and you must be at least 18 years of age to win. All entries (comments) must be entered between 10:00 a.m. ET on February 18, 2015 and 12:00 p.m. ET on February 19, 2015. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of prize: $80. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a HGTV, 9721 Sherrill Boulevard, Knoxville, TN 37932.

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Happy Fat Tuesday, everyone! Today marks the last day of the Carnival season, but the party is just getting started. Parades have been flowing through the streets of New Orleans since early this month, and floats are still making their way through with trinkets and treats in tow. Today’s final night of celebrations will surely be filled with lots of beads, booze and King Cake. (Jealous!)

If you’re stuck, well, not in the Big Easy, then we have eight delicious ways to bring the taste of N’awlins to wherever you may be. Just grab some beads, mix up a hurricane and (mentally) head down South.

Cajun-Style Gumbalaya

Take a trip to New Orleans with this Cajun-inspired dish. It’s a cross between gumbo and spicy jambalaya that’s perfect for those who just can’t decide which Louisiana entree they want. Get the recipe >> 

Shrimp Gumbo

Shrimp Gumbo Recipe

This spicy Cajun gumbo gets most of its flavor from the dark roux and its thickness from the herb file. Onions, celery and green peppers, major ingredients in both Creole and Cajun cooking, add flavor and substance to the shrimp and sausage stew. Get the recipe from FoodNetwork.com >>

More Big Easy Bites

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As a longtime film fan and onetime film critic, there have been countless occasions when I’ve longed to inhabit the reality of an incredible film. Who hasn’t wanted to savor a recipe, product, perfume or outfit that brings you closer to the sensibility and spirit of an influential movie?

Who better to inaugurate Design Happens’ newest series, “Live That Film,” than a director who creates undeniably appealing, seductive visual worlds set-designed within an inch of their lives?

There’s no denying director Wes Anderson’s (The Royal Tenenbaums, Fantastic Mr. Fox) visual sensibility. His films are so eyeball-satisfyingly scrumptious and meticulously designed you want to crawl right into them and stroll around, maybe snatch an ashtray or some towels to take home with you to savor the visit.

The Grand Budapest Hotel Movie Poster

Photo courtesy of Fox Searchlight Pictures

Set at a dreamy make-believe resort in the Alps in the 1930s, The Grand Budapest Hotel is Anderson’s melancholy homage to a never-to-be-recaptured period of Old World manners and elegance (and classic movies) before the downers of World War II and Soviet Communism laid a major bummer on the world.

Nominated for nine Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director and — of course — Production Design from the uber-talented Adam Stockhausen, The Grand Budapest Hotel is Anderson in prime form. Filled with elegant architecture and a general spirit of wackiness, the film is an experience you can bring home with you or recapture in a sojourn abroad. Check out these stylish elements that bring the Anderson world just a bit closer.

Luxury Hotels, Macarons + More

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I recently returned from a trip to Las Vegas for the 2015 Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS). As a newbie to both Design Happens (first post!) and homeownership (first house purchased last year!), I was doubly excited to check out the latest kitchen and bathroom products to hit the market. The sheer amount of beautiful fixtures and finishes on display was rather overwhelming, but a few particularly glitzy and colorful items caught my eye. (What can I say? I’m drawn to shiny things.) If you’re looking for an update with big impact for your kitchen or bath, consider these four striking ideas:

Dimensional Tile

Metallic Tile by Ann Sacks at KBIS 2015

Lux by Ann Sacks

Ann Sacks Tile at KBIS 2015

Left: Geode Gemstone by Ann Sacks; Right: Lux Relais by Ann Sacks

You know those people who have to touch every silky shirt or fluffy blanket while shopping? I’m one of those, which made it hard to tear myself away from the tile work on display at KBIS. While the colors were largely neutral – lots of grays, khakis and creams – the styles were anything but bland with tons of texture, intricate patterns and lustrous metallic finishes. Must. Touch. These looks would add instant drama to any kitchen or bath.

See More Statement-Making Kitchen + Bath Trends

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February is all about love. And what do we love here at Design Happens? Finding out what you, our dear readers, adore. That’s why we decided to ask for your help to choose our top hue again this month. This month’s contenders: Cheery tangerine vs. feminine flamingo.

HGTV Color of the Month February 2015

Option 1: Tangerine
HGTV editor Shannon (a Color of the Month newbie) wowed us with her pitch for bright, cheery tangerine. Her color inspiration? A bright orange La Cornue professional range spotted on her recent visit to the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show. (We’re kind of obsessed!) This bright, cheerful hue adds a juicy punch even in small doses, from the inside of a kitchen cabinet to a modern armchair.

Tangerine Midcentury Rocker

Option 2: Flamingo
We were equally smitten with Briana‘s pitch for flamingo pink. A slightly pinker take on coral, this Strawberry Ice-meets-guava shade feel fresh when used in home accessories, on the walls and in large-scale rugs. It’s also delicious…in a cookie or a fresh fruit smoothie.

HGTV Color of the Month - Flamingo

So, which hue is your favorite?

CAST YOUR VOTE NOW

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Guys sometimes get a bad wrap for buying Valentine’s Day gifts at the last-minute, but hey, ladies are procrastinators, too. (Read: me.) If you’re scrambling for the perfect gift, we’ve got you covered! Here are 5 thoughtful gifts you can make or buy just in time.

Last-Minute Valentine's Day Gifts for Guys

01. Whiskey Stones. Perfect for the scotch or bourbon enthusiast in your life, these rocks let him chill his drink without watering it down. Bonus points if you throw in rocks glasses or a bottle of his favorite brand.

02. “Attracted to You” Printable Card. Maybe your dude is lovably nerdy. Appeal to his punny nature with this scientific explanation for your magnetic attraction. Buy the design online, then print the template on cardstock.

03. Framed Album Covers. For the audiophile, look no further than these framed vinyl album covers. Search vintage store shelves for quirky or classic album covers, then frame in a basic black craft-store frame. Or, scan one of his favorites and print on cardstock.

04. Top Hat & Mustache Cufflinks. Does your guy love wearing vintage three piece suits? Is there a monocle on his dresser? These vintage-inspired cuff links are for him.

05. Breakfast Pizza. Okay, really, what guy wouldn’t love pizza for breakfast? Use store-bought or homemade pizza dough, then top with sauce and his favorite toppings and a sunny-side up egg. Done and done. See how Marianne makes her own.

Have a go-to last minute gift? Tell us in the comments below.

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We all have that Pinterest board. The one with the flea market upcycling projects and furniture hacks that we dream of. We collect ideas and wait for the day when we find the perfect free-on-the-curb piece that needs some TLC. How does the old saying go? One person’s trash is another person’s Pinterest gold?

We thought it would be fun to see how these projects come to life in the real world. That’s where you come in.

DIY nightstand before-and-afters

Use the #HGTVmakeover hashtag on Twitter and Instagram to show us your DIY projects!

We want to show off your handy work. We’re looking to you, lovely readers, to share your prized projects with us on Twitter and Instagram.

Tag your tweets and photos using the hashtag #HGTVmakeover by next Friday we’ll share our favorites in an upcoming blog post. This month, we want to see your DIY bedside tables. Did you add custom drawer pulls? Paint it a bright color? Add fabric or grasscloth? Show us –  we can’t wait to see your transformations!

 

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No matter how you plan to spend Valentine’s Day (or with whom), it’s probably fair to assume there will be chocolate involved. Make it dark chocolate for a healthier sweet treat you’ll L-O-V-E.

Dark chocolate and cocoa are packed with antioxidants, a powerful agent against free radicals, which have been linked to serious conditions such as cancer and heart disease. So indulge in these dark chocolate recipes with your beau or a friend, and they could help protect your heart, even if it gets broken.

Smoldering Heart Dark Chocolate Cookies

heart shaped chocolate cookies

Image courtesy of The View From Great Island

These heart-shaped cookies stand out among the rest. Ditch the pink icing or red sprinkles, and opt for a more “smoldering” dark chocolate look. Cayenne powder in the shortbread cookie adds just the right amount of heat, and smoked paprika on the icing spices things up even more.

Get the full recipe at The View From Great Island

Dark Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Cookie Bars

oatmeal chocolate bars

Image courtesy of Half Baked Harvest

This treat may be having an identity crisis: Is it a bar? A cookie? A brownie? But, who cares! They are healthy thanks to filling fiber in the oats, those antioxidants in the dark chocolate, and the recipe calls for coconut oil (jury still out on the potential benefits, there). Plus, they’re done in just 30 minutes flat!

Get the full recipe at Half Baked Harvest

Dark Chocolate Zucchini Cake

chocolate cake

Image courtesy of Heather Christo

Looking at this decadent dark chocolate cake with chocolate-espresso icing you’d NEVER be able to guess its secret ingredient. Zucchini helps keep the cake super moist, and it’s a sneaky way to meet your veggie quota.

Get the full recipe from Heather Christo

Chocolate Dipped Fruit

chocolate dipped fruit

Image Courtesy of Marla Meridith

It wouldn’t be Valentine’s Day without a chocolate covered strawberry or five, but don’t discriminate against other fruit that taste equally delish dipped in the good stuff. Create a different kind of bouquet by dipping various berries in melted dark chocolate—blackberries, raspberries, and blueberries were all used here. Stick them on the end of a skewer, and place in a vase for easy access to healthy snacking.

Get the full recipe at Family Fresh Cooking

Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bites

chocolate covered banana and peanut butter

Image Courtesy of Smile Sandwich

I personally love a recipe that calls for items you likely have in the cupboard already. Enter these bite-sized treats that have just four ingredients. Potassium from the bananas, protein from the nut butter, and antioxidants from the dark chocolate come together for a unique homemade sweet to share with whomever you choose.

Get the full recipe at Smile Sandwich

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It’s Friday, Feb. 13 — are you and your galentines planning on seeing 50 Shades of Grey tonight? I have to admit, my taste in sexy time entertainment is a bit more vanilla, so I’m probably going to spend my Friday night indulging instead in fifty uses of my favorite neutral shade in home design. I know my husband will be thrilled!

In this stunning bachelor bedroom designed by Lindsay Boswell and Ali Levin of LABLstudio, gray dominates the wall, creating a masculine look that would please Christian Grey himself. Deep, charcoal grays (this particular shade is Benjamin Moore’s Kendall Charcoal) help create a moody tone and work well in intimate spaces.

Design by LABLstudio

Maybe you’re looking for something more demure, a la Anastasia Steele? I love this particular shade, which is more of a whisper gray, chosen by designer Regan Baker for yet another bachelor bedroom. It’s soft enough to serve as an understated backdrop to the bold orange artwork and can slip easily into both feminine and masculine styles.

Design by Regan Baker

Oh, gray. How much do I love thee? Flip through the gallery below and tell us your favorite gray room.

Want more inspiration for your home? Head to the HGTV Photo Library.

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Guys, Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. This year, I’m going to celebrate Galentine’s Day by making these adorable marbled clay dishes for all of my favorite girls. I mean, just look at them:

Make Your Own Marbled Clay Bowls - HGTV Design Happens

Adorable, right? The good news: They’re easier to make than you think. With some oven-bake clay and a few rolls and twists, you’ll have a big batch in no time. Read on to see how I made these…and what to fill them with!

How to DIY These Marbled Clay Dishes

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Valentine's Day Gifts for Guys

For every dude that loves design, there’s one that considers a plastic basketball hoop designer decor. With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, it’s time to get your space into tip-top shape if you really want love to be swirling around like an air freshener. Follow these quick design tips to help make sure your date wants to seal the whole shebang with a kiss.

1. Threshold Woven Napkins. Snazz up your dinner table with some napkins that aren’t paper towels or leftovers from your last takeout order. These machine-washable numbers will up your class factor immediately.

2. Faux Fur Throw. Whether you drop this sucker over the back of your couch or put it at the end of your bed, there’s nothing that says “I’m design-savvy, now let’s snuggle” better than a fab faux fur throw.

3. Turkish Bath Towels. Yes, you can shut the door of your bathroom and hope no one goes in there, but you should probably just face the facts: someone will. To soften the blow, make sure they have some pretty towels to dry their hands.

4. Sonos Speakers. Play songs from your iTunes library, Pandora, Spotify or anywhere else you house your music. You can control it all with your iPhone or iPad, and the sound quality is ah-mazing.

5. Acrylic Frame. Sure, you could simply put a photo of you and your sweetheart in there … but you could also get creative. Write down an inside joke between the two of you, or include a picture of some place that the two of you have talked about going on vacation. Casually leave the frame out and wait for the magic to happen.

Make us proud, guys!

Still looking for that perfect gift?

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People celebrate Valentine’s Day many different ways. You may be throwing a big bash, planning a romantic dinner for two or possibly even throwing an anti-Valentine’s Day party. Either way, these all have one thing in common: cocktails. No matter how you feel about this holiday, we can all agree that cocktails are inevitable this Saturday. We’ve listed our favorites that work for any Valentine’s Day celebration.

Sumac Me Smile

Boodles Gin Sumac Surprise

  • 2 ounces Boodles Gin
  • 3/4 ounce pomegranate juice
  • 1/4 ounce fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 ounce sumac syrup*
  • dash grapefruit bitters
  • splash of club soda
  • lemon peel, for garnish

Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker over ice and shake vigorously. Pour over fresh ice in a rocks glass, and add a splash of club soda. Garnish with a long lemon peel.

*To make one quart sumac syrup, bring 16 ounces water to a boil. Remove from heat. Add six tablespoons ground sumac. Steep 10 minutes. Add 16 ounces white granulated sugar, and stir until dissolved. Let steep overnight, then strain through fine mesh.

4 More Cocktails You’ll Love

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You guessed correctly if you chose option C. Layla Palmer created this headboard using unfinished shutters, paint and sandpaper. Get the full instructions here>>

Cottage-Style Bedroom

We randomly chose one person from the comments, and Logan is the winner of two Connected LED Bulbs (compatible with any smartphone) from Cree and a Wink hub. Congrats!

Check back next Wednesday to decorate a new space.

  • Tell Your Friends

Congratulations to this week’s winner, Logan!

Can you guess which headboard belongs in this bedroom?

Decorate This Space

Type A, B or C in the comments section, and we’ll reveal the answer tomorrow. One lucky winner will win two Connected LED Bulbs (compatible with any smartphone) from Cree and a Wink hub.

Choose A, B or C

You may only comment once to be considered, and you don’t have to purchase anything to win; a purchase will not increase your chances of winning. Odds depend on total number of entries. Void where prohibited by law. Only open to legal residents of 50 U.S., D.C. or Puerto Rico, and you must be at least 18 years of age to win. All entries (comments) must be entered between 10:00 a.m. ET on February 11, 2015 and 12:00 p.m. ET on February 12, 2015. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of prize: $80. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a HGTV, 9721 Sherrill Boulevard, Knoxville, TN 37932.

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I may be gaga over my guy but I’ll be quick to mention that I need QT with my ladies. Whether you’re single, married or otherwise taken, we can all agree that there’s nothing like a best friend or lots of best friends. So, set aside some time before February 14 to celebrate those special gals in your life who have been there through it all — break ups, make ups, moves, graduations and job promotions. Then, take a cue from our favorite TV bestie, Leslie Knope, with these Galentine’s Day party ideas and our own ways to cook up a yummy breakfast for your favorites.

Valentine's Day Gift Guide for Friends

1. ban.do 2. Kate Spade 3. ModCloth 4. Moorea Seal 5. Shopbop

1. Sweet Talk Pens. Your BFF has a high-stress job with stacked meetings every day. These pens offer an instant ego boost, all over good vibes and a rock-star mentality. (My fave: You’re better than unicorns.)

2. “Happy Hour” Flask. Is your friend the gal who likes to be ready to mix her favorite drink at a moment’s notice? This flask is perfect for her. Plus, it’s small enough to fit in a wristlet.

3. Cat Mugs. Keep one for yourself and gift the other to a friend. When side by side, they make the perfect set. (This is ideal for cat lovers, tea drinkers and coffee addicts.)

4. Floral iPhone Case. This isn’t your typical iPhone case, people. This is a gorgeous metallic cover with an arrangement of real, dried roses and daises, symbolizing innocent beauty and love. (Only your BFF would appreciate this!)

5. Best Friend Bracelet. Who didn’t have best friend jewelry? I thought so. If it wasn’t a broken heart necklace, it was handmade beaded bracelets. As adults, we can proudly showcase our friendship with these bangle bracelets. Love.

Feeling crafty? Test your DIY skills with these handmade Valentine’s Day gifts.

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In case you’ve somehow missed the near-constant barrage of jewelry, chocolate and flower commercials: Valentine’s Day is this Saturday! And, if you’re like me, any excuse to indulge my sweet tooth is a good one so I say Bring. It. On.

While store-bought treats are certainly delicious, nothing shows the depth of your affection quite like homemade goodies. Unleash your inner foodie and whip up one of these five decadent delights that are sure to make this Valentine’s Day your sweetest yet:

These artful cookies look time-consuming but decorating them couldn’t be easier. Get Marianne’s easy-to-follow video tips for icing like a pro plus her cookie recipe.

How to Make Beautiful Valentine's Day Sugar Cookies

Mmmmm…..chocolate! Truly, is there any flavor more craveable, more decadent? Well, not to me at least. Topped with homemade vanilla and strawberry frosting, these Neapolitan Bonbon Cupcakes are *almost* too pretty to eat.

Neapolitan Bonbon Cupcakes Recipe

If a hot-from-the-oven pie is the surest way to your sweetie’s stomach, give the crust a creative treatment with one of these 8 pro pastry ideas:

9 One-of-a-Kind Pie Crust Ideas

And, although, I personally can’t relate: Some folks don’t like chocolate (I know, the horror!) so this sweet-meets-tart mouthful may be just the ticket.

Homemade Lemon Cupcakes

When whipping up homemade goodies, don’t forget your furry best friend! These crunchy biscuits topped with cream cheese frosting are sure to get tails waggin’!

Homemade Dog Treats Recipe

MORE VALENTINE’S DAY INSPIRATION:

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Buying the perfect Valentine’s Day gift for the lady in your life comes with insurmountable pressure. You don’t want to settle for the usual flowers and chocolate (Although, I would never turn those down!), but you still want to give something from the heart. I’ve rounded up our top five creative yet practical gifts she’ll love and will be surprised to get.

 

HGTV Valentine's Day Gift Guide

 1. Society6 / 2. west elm / 3. / Silhouette Boutique / 4. minted. / 5. CitySlips

1. “I LIKE YOU.” Tote Bag. This is the perfect gift if your sweetheart is a dog lover. Bonus: She’ll always think of you anytime she carries it around.

2. Faceted Gold Terrarium. Put a little twist on the traditional bouquet of flowers with a terrarium filled with succulents that she will keep alive for much longer.

3. Cupcake Socks. Who wouldn’t love a pair of these? I may or may not have bought a pair for myself.

4. Custom Stationery. Help her keep in touch with her friends who live all over the world. Add a personal touch by customizing stationery with her name, favorite color and print.

5. Audio Earmuffs. She can plug these fuzzy headphones into her smart phone or MP3 player, so she can listen to her favorite tunes while staying warm.

What’s on your Valentine’s Day gift wish list? Tell us in the comments below.

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What are you flowers saying? Last year, my sweet, unassuming boyfriend came home with a vase of wilted alstroemeria and, although I still loved them as if they had been fresh garden roses, I later gave him a short lesson on what his flowers inadvertently told me: he had procrastinated.

In the Victorian Era, flowers had secret meanings that expressed sentiments of love, lust, adoration, and even rejection. This secret language still exists today, if somewhat subconsciously. So this Valentine’s Day, don’t let your flowers send the wrong message! Learn the past and present meanings of 8 of today’s most popular flowers below.

Behind the Bouquet

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Your favorite HGTV Magazine stories are better than ever in the latest issue on sale tomorrow. Curb Appeal heads to sunny Florida, Flea Market Flips is still turning tossed goods into look-at-me-now furniture, and let’s just say the house tours…those will leave you with more ideas than you know what to do with.

March cover

Pick up the latest March issue of HGTV Mag!

There’s lots more to explore, and you can be among the first to dig in to new content by subscribing here. For now, let’s take a look at some of what you’ll find when you head to the newsstand.

We started with the basics: a white dresser. Then added no-fail accessories that show off your personal style: a lamp, a vase, and a pretty object.

dresser

Mint green dresser, Chevron wall, and pretty flowers—we love.

We created four dresser looks, but it’s only online where can you find the instructions for painting two of the more intricate designs. Visit hgtv.com/dresser-formula to see how.

A brand new column in this issue included a recipe from a familiar HGTV star. One who is known for his colorful personality, but who can apparently also whip up a batch of gooey delicious Chocolate Chip Sea-Salt Cookies. Who do you think this mystery man is? Take a guess, then test the recipe for yourself.

cookies

Guess which star baked these bakery-size cookies?

Get more exciting HGTV Magazine news on Twitter by following us @HGTVMag.

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