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Eco-friendly waterfront home in Sag Harbor, N.Y.

Image Source: Sotheby’s International Realty

With this Sag Harbor home, it’s all about the environment — both enjoying it and protecting it. Situated in a private spot off the road on Sag Harbor Cove, this three-bedroom retreat sits on the waterfront, which you can enjoy from the many vantage points provided by the ample decking, boat dock and lush lawn. We wouldn’t mind admiring the beautiful sunset from that bayside pool, would you? Read more

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HGTV Smart Home 2013 First Look Inside

Boy, do I have a treat for you today: a double video feature starring digital stylist Carley Knobloch. She takes you on an exclusive tour of the interior during construction and then steps outside to highlight the home’s most outstanding features, from shingles to water features. Take a look, then post your thoughts!
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My love affair with stately, opulent marble began in college and my first trip to Italy. Semesters spent in art history class poring over photos of classical sculpture and architecture didn’t prepare me for experiencing it firsthand. By the end of Day One, I was hooked and my quest for Carrara marble began.

The first bit of marble awesomeness I bought was a small bedroom lamp. I’ve since graduated to these big beauties (below). You can find them on ebay, 1stdibs and V&M but be prepared to shell out the big bucks. The lamps themselves are pricey but shipping is the real budget-buster. Plus, because these date mainly to the ’20s, ’30s and ’40s (Art Deco and Hollywood Regency periods), the wiring will need to be replaced meaning more $$.

To score a marble lamp within budget, hit local antique or thrift stores and, of course, estate and garage sales. Before purchasing, carefully check the stone for chips, cracks and discoloration. A good cleaning with mild dish soap and a toothbrush will do wonders, but marble is porous so if the lamp has spent decades exposed to cigarette smoke, regaining its original creamy color will require professional help.

Oh, in case you’re wondering: I paid $35 for the lamp below at an antique store which my dad and I then rewired for around $12, $15 for the drum shade and $18 (a total splurge) for the crystal finial.marble table lamp with lenten roses

How amazing is this bowl?! I found it full of stagnant water and rotted plants at an estate sale. It was so grimy that both I and the seller initially thought it was concrete. After wiping off a layer of black slime (eww!) I could tell it was marble and knew I had to have it. The price: just $10 — a real steal. Of course, I tweaked my back man-handling it back to the car…but….it was totally worth it.  carrara marble planter with orchids

Here you can see the planter’s detail. The marble isn’t polished but the lion’s heads and banded detail are well carved. carrara marble planter with orchids

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Baby, it’s cold outside. Which makes you want (or need) to stay inside your cave, like a bear that’s ready to hibernate. While such a scenario seems cozy to most, many people are truly afflicted with Seasonal Affective Disorder (S.A.D.).

Symptoms include depression, sleep disorders, and lethargy. A major factor is lower light levels in winter, causing chemical communication errors in the brain and body. We are sensitive to light and if there is not enough, melatonin is released into the blood stream, making us feel blah.

Full spectrum light bulbs help a lot (as do light boxes which mimic the sun’s intensity at noon: 10,000 Lux), but there are also many other things you can do to feel peppy indoors while winter rages on outside.

1. Use paint colors to feel happier

While it may seem to be a no-brainer to surround yourself in the lightest colors possible before your mood darkens too much, there’s actually some psychology to this. Did you know red in the kitchen will make you feel hungrier? Or that blue in the bedroom really will help put you in the mood for love? For those who work at home, green (light green or lime, please) is great because it’s been proven to inspire concentration.

Photo courtesy of Alison Gootee (HGTV)

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