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    Best indoor plants for large spaces.

    February 23, 2021 6:00 AM by emily.bailey

    Tuesday, February 23, 2021

    Big houseplants | Schlage

    Step aside, dainty African violet. Make way, itty-bitty begonia. It’s time to talk about big indoor plants.

     

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    Step aside, dainty African violet. Make way, itty-bitty begonia. It’s time to talk about big indoor plants.

     

    So often when we think of houseplants, we imagine small containers sitting on a kitchen windowsill or a miniature cactus on a bedside table. We love those little details that brighten a room in unexpected ways, but sometimes bigger is better. If you’re looking for that jungle-like vibe in your living room, want to add some color to an entryway or simply need something to fill that awkward empty corner, then large indoor plants might be for you. But don’t take our word for it. Check out some of our favorite Instagram posts with big #houseplants.

    Modern farmhouse living room with fireplace and big houseplant.

    Calathea crazy » @she.wears.the.plants

    Calathea are relatively low maintenance as far as houseplants go, but what we really love about them is their variety of sizes and colors. Some are all different shades of green, while others bring in white, reds and purples. You’ll also find some that are shorter with broader leaves and others that are leggier and slimmer. That’s what we call a plant for all tastes.
     

    Green gurls » @plantkween

    Going big is certainly not something @plantkween is afraid of, whether in life or when it comes to their indoor plants. Their larger-than-life style caught the eye of Vogue earlier this year when the magazine highlighted the benefits of plants during quarantine. “Setting up my office in my plant room has been one of the best decisions I’ve made thus far in reimagining and revisioning how I stay productive, calm, happy, and fully present in my werk routine.”
     

    Awesome orchids » @green.planetmk

    Orchids often get a reputation for being delicate and finicky, but this giant looks anything but. Avoid direct sunlight and overwatering, and you’re on your way to a healthy and beautiful orchid.
     

    Surprising stems » @laylacelik

    What we see here is a beautiful Alocasia zebrina, a member of the Elephant Ear family. Its popularity comes from surprising striped stems rather than flowers or exotic leaves. Reaching three feet in height at maturity, it’s not the largest houseplant on our list, but that doesn’t mean it can’t add some pizzazz to any room.
     

    Fine looking ficus » @janki.home

    If you’re looking for a fine example of indoor plants to brighten up an entryway, look no farther than @janki.home. The tall ficus on the left lends some vibrancy to this Bohemian Modern décor and white walls. And because it’s relatively slim, it won’t get in the way when you’re coming and going.
     

    Outside in » @cathykincaidinteriors

    The large houseplants in this sunroom work for two reasons. First, along with the large windows, they really help bring the outdoors in. And second, they’re excellent corner décor where additional furniture would feel cluttered and impractical. We can’t stop looking at the potted tree in the corner that also draws attention to the architectural details of the high ceiling.
     

    Slim and simple » @plantastic_mr_fox

    Do you need a reason to love snake plants? We’ll give you two. One, they’re super easy to take care of, and that makes them perfect for new plant parents and those wanting something that won’t take up a lot of time. “I just love how they look and they are so so easy to care for,” says @plantastic_mr_fox. “I keep mine in the corner of an east facing room which gets low indirect light. I water and fertilise her once a month and she seems to be so happy with this.”

     

    Two, while on the larger side, they don’t branch outward much. That makes the snake plant ideal when you’re tight on space or want something in a high-traffic area but don’t want to get snagged on leaves each time you pass through.
     

    Climbing beauty » @lucidmonstera

    Monstera is a common choice for houseplants, especially if you want to go big. But here we see that some varieties are anything but ho-hum. This two-tone climbing indoor plant definitely fits the bill, although be prepared to be an attentive plant parent to get this look. Says @lucidmonstera, “She came to me exactly a year ago with just two baby leaves and a tiny root. Throwing tantrums whenever she could through winter. Seriously, the attentions she asked and demanded were her best work yet back then. But hey, she’s finally grown, behaving and flourishing like never before. I do feel like a proud dad (who’s slicing onions?)”
     

    If these plants have inspired you to start your own indoor jungle, make sure you know how to keep them happy, healthy and beautiful. Check out our guide to caring for indoor plants and more healthy décor tips at the Schlage blog.

     

    How to choose the right containers for your indoor plants.

    February 19, 2021 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Friday, February 19, 2021

    Houseplant containers | Schlage

    Try these potting tips to help keep your indoor plants happy, healthy and beautiful.

     

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    When it comes to caring for houseplants, light and water are the two big factors in whether they merely survive or really thrive. Don’t discount soil and type of pot, though. Try these potting tips to help keep your indoor plants happy, healthy and beautiful. Because you’re not the only one who loves a stylish home.
    Indoor houseplant containers.

    Container size

    The size of your container is, well, huge. Choose a pot that’s too small and your plant literally won’t have enough room to grow and the soil will dry out too quickly. Choose one that’s too big and your soil will stay too wet for too long, resulting in root rot. You want a container that’s at least an inch or two larger than the plastic container it currently lives in, or for bigger plants, aim for two to three inches larger. Plan to repot your plant as it grows.

    Hanging macramé planter.

    Container type

    Let’s start with plastic versus earthenware, terracotta and ceramic. Plastic pots are lighter and less expensive, but they also retain more moisture. This isn’t necessarily a problem, but take that into account based on the type of plant you have – whether they like moist or dry soil – and how often you water them. That lightweight quality may be particularly important to you if you plan on putting your plants on a shelf or in a hanging basket.

     

    Other materials like terracotta are heavier and more expensive, but some experts say they’re better when it comes to maintaining the right level of moisture. Plus, less plastic is good for the environment. No matter what material you choose, we’re sure you’ll find something that fits your personal taste and matches the style of your home.

    Filling planter with cachepot.

    Drainage

    When you repot your plant, keep drainage in mind. You either want a pot that allows excess water to run out (and, therefore, a tray, too), or you want to add rocks to the bottom of your pot. Skipping this step could lead to root rot, eventually killing your beloved houseplant. Pebbles and rocks are also helpful on top of the soil if you have curious pets who like to dig.

     

    Here’s a handy trick for when your favorite pot – it’s so pretty! – doesn’t have proper drainage. Use that beautiful container as a cachepot by placing your good-draining pot inside it. This technique is also referred to as double potting and is ideal when you want to use something like a vintage tea tin, wicker basket or hatbox to show off your indoor plants.

     

    When it comes to drainage and soil moisture, don’t forget about self-watering pots. These containers have a reservoir or tray below so roots can soak up water from underneath. This method helps maintain consistent moisture in the soil and lets you be more hands-off in general. It’s not ideal for all plant varieties, though, so do your research first.

    Sitting are with a variety of houseplants.

    Soil

    What kind of soil you use depends on the type of plant you have. Some varieties, like cactus, prefer a higher sand content, while others, like ferns, prefer more humus. You can purchase the ideal potting soil at your local garden store or, if you have a green thumb, create your own mix by adding the right ratios of compost, bark and moss.

     

    Lastly, some plants don’t need soil at all. The obvious example is the air plant, most often planted in a glass bulb or as part of a living wall. Others need water and more swamp-like conditions, or even just a log to latch onto. When you consider these non-traditional houseplants, your options for a unique look expand even more.

     

    Get more tips on caring for indoor plants at the Schlage blog. You’ll also find plenty more features to help make your home as beautiful, healthy and restful as you desire.

     

    11 overlooked spaces you should decorate.

    February 17, 2021 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Wednesday, February 17, 2021

    Overlooked spaces to decorate | Schlage

    Looking for a few ideas to add a unique twist to your decor? Try adding details to a few unexpected places. Here are 11 ideas for making the most of the overlooked spaces in your home.

     

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    Looking for a few ideas to add a unique twist to your decor? Try adding details to a few unexpected places. Here are 11 ideas for making the most of the overlooked spaces in your home.
    Minimalist fireplace decor.

    1. Interior doors

    The doors in your home are often the most overlooked blank canvas. Use them to add a pop of color or tie an entire room together with a new knob or lever. Check out some of our favorite ideas for using your doors as decor here.
     

    2. Windows

    Do you have a wide window sill? Decorate with accessories or small plants for an extra expression of style. If you don’t have this luxury, you can still display fresh cut flowers or plants near the sunlight with hanging vases or jars.
     

    3. Cabinets

    If you'd like to add a touch of style to your kitchen but counter space is limited, try using the space between the top of your cabinets and the ceiling. This will let you display some of your favorite pieces while limiting clutter below.
     

    4. Entryway

    Like your curb appeal, your foyer or vestibule decor makes a strong first impression. Choose pieces intentionally for style and function so you don’t clutter this small space – a vintage table that also holds keys or colorful artwork, a bench with gorgeous cushions that also gives you somewhere to sit while putting on shoes or eclectic coat hooks that show your fun side and keep the kids’ stuff off the floor. This is also a great way to create the impression of a formal foyer when it might just be a simple hallway.
     

    5. Ceiling

    HuffPost says the most overlooked spot in a living room is over head. Paint your ceiling or take a page from the vintage handbook by installing antique ceiling tiles.
     

    6. Unused fireplace

    Whether you never use your fireplace or you just cleaned it for the warm summer months, there's no reason to ignore this architectural detail in the off-season. From candles to books to plants, there are many ideas for using this space to make a style statement.
     

    7. Stairways

    Try a gallery wall that ascends along the steps to showcase family photos or artwork. Or turn that awkward space underneath the stairs into a whimsical display for your favorite accessories or even a mini library.

    When decorating your stairs, don’t forget to look down. The steps themselves are prime real estate for adding some visual interest without taking up any space. You can paint or apply stick-on tiles to the risers for some extra color and pattern.

    8. Behind the couch

    If your couch is along the room’s perimeter, why not use that gap you’ve left between the couch and the wall to prevent damage? Jenna Sue created a sofa table just wide enough for some welcoming décor as you come up the stairs, all for just $30.
     

    9. Above the toilet

    The top of your toilet is a great place to utilize some unused space. Use it for necessities like extra toiletries but also add a touch of your personal style through fresh cut flowers or your favorite accessory.
     

    10. Above the washer and dryer

    You can also leverage empty space above your washer or dryer. Add a little shelf for extra storage or just to make the laundry room feel a little more homey.
     

    11. Closet

    We get so fixated on the utility of a closet – can it hold all my stuff, will it help my family be more organized – that we often forget it can be beautiful, too. Some paint or wallpaper on the interior doesn’t take up any valuable space, but it will make it more enjoyable to see each day. And if you need a door knob anyway, why not make it a stylish one that adds to the décor while you’re at it. Tulip Lane used the Schlage Custom™ Alexandria glass knob for a sophisticated touch in an unexpected, often neglected space.
     

    What other overlooked places have you decorated in your home? Share your photos with us on Facebook and Instagram.

     

    Top tips for choosing indoor plants and keeping them alive.

    February 15, 2021 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Monday, February 15, 2021

    Indoor houseplant tips | Schlage

    Try these tips to help your indoor plants thrive and keep your home looking fabulous.

     

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    There’s no disputing that houseplants are having their day in home décor. And why not? Plants are proven to improve our mood and, as many people found during quarantine, caring for them makes a great hobby. To top it all off, houseplants look great, at least when they’re healthy. Try these tips to help your indoor plants thrive and keep your home looking fabulous.
    Indoor houseplants

    Best light for indoor plants

    Houzz provides some unexpected advice for getting the right light for your houseplants: Don’t buy a plant until you know what kind of light you have in your home. Before you even go shopping, decide where you want to put your pots and watch the lighting throughout the day. Does the room get direct sunlight through the window or does it get indirect light? Is it on the darker side no matter the time of day? This bit of planning will help keep your plants healthier from the start.

     

    And here’s an extra tip. As the sun moves throughout the day, direct lighting will change. So, for example, because your peperomia thrives on low or indirect light, use window treatments to block the sun when necessary. Worried that you won’t forget to re-open the blinds later? Set up your Alexa to remind you each day.

     

    If there’s a plant variety you simply can’t live without but you don’t have the right light for it, a grow lamp might be your answer. They’re perfect for indoor plants that don’t get enough sun. You can also try this DIY greenhouse hack from Apartment Therapy, which uses an IKEA cabinet and is great for small spaces.

     

    Water and humidity for indoor plants

    To water or not to water, that is a question that most often separates the green thumbs from the brown. The traditional, simple advice is to check the moisture rating on that little tag that comes with the plant. It will tell you how damp or dry the soil should be kept.

     

    If, no matter what you do, you can’t seem to keep your plants watered enough, your home’s humidity could be the culprit. Indoor air can get exceptionally dry, especially in the winter. To fix this problem, use a humidifier – and keep yourself from drying out too much while you’re at it. You could also mist your plants with a spray bottle or set your pots in a shallow tray with pebbles and about an inch of water. This small “bath” should add enough moisture to the air to revitalize your plants.

    Cat laying on couch next to humidifier and houseplant

    People have been tending plants for centuries now, but that doesn’t mean it has to be an old-school occupation. We’re big fans of using technology to help your plants thrive. Just like you set a reminder with Alexa for lighting, you can do the same for water. The Vera by Bloomscape app also lets you create watering reminders, as well as get all kinds of houseplant tips and expert advice.

     

    If all else fails, choose a plant variety that’s nearly impossible to kill. Some houseplants are really quite resilient and will survive even when suffering the worst neglect. Need some ideas?

    Indestructible indoor plants for beginners

    ZZ plant

    If what you’re looking for is indestructible and low maintenance, this one’s for you. ZZ plants actually do better the more you leave them alone and need only low light and dry conditions.

    Dracaena

    A type of bamboo, this is another houseplant that tolerates low and artificial light. It’s why we often keep them in our office cubicles with their fluorescent bulbs. Even if they start to wilt from a lack of water, they typically bounce back with a good drink.

    Cast iron plant

    Low light? Check. Poor-quality soil? Check. Occasional watering? Check. Aside from being easy to care for, we like cast iron plants because they can get on the taller side, giving you a different look than your typical windowsill greenery.

    Jade plant

    Experts say a good watering every week or two will keep your jade plant healthy, although we can speak from experience that if you go longer, you won’t kill it either. Make sure it gets full light and don’t be concerned if the leaves turn a bit of a rusty color in direct sun.

    Chinese money plant

    If you have a shady spot in your house and want to get more bang for your buck, try a Chinese money plant. They’re easy to propagate – make more plants from clippings – so you can easily fill your house with this variety if you really love it. A weekly water is all it needs, too.

    Yucca

    This is one variety that, depending on where you live, you might not immediately think of as an indoor plant. It’s native to more arid regions, so make sure you give it lots of sun, minimal water and a deep pot. It can get a bit top-heavy and you don’t want it tipping over.

    Calathea

    We picked this one for our list partly for its color. You’ll find leaves with varying shades of green as well as some pink and red tones. Keep the soil moist and avoid bright light to help them look their best.

    Kalanchoe

    If you like the idea of color, give kalanchoe a shot. These flowering succulents can survive in cooler temperatures too – as low as about 45 degrees – so they should be okay on a drafty windowsill.

    Air plants

    The air plant is in a category of its own. You water them by soaking their roots about every two weeks, misting them in between if they need a little extra moisture. They’re most notable for spidery or spikey leaves, but many do provide blooms as well. And because they don’t grow in soil, you have some unique options for planting. Include them in a living wall, hang them from glass ball-style containers or even place them in wine glasses, for example.

     

    One final note: Be aware that many houseplants are toxic to children and pets. Do your research before introducing a new green companion to the family.

     

    Whether you’re adding biophilic décor to help capture that Bohemian modern vibe or want to literally liven up your desk, houseplants are just the beginning. Find more interior design ideas at the Schlage blog or by finding us on Pinterest.

     

    Home improvement projects to complete in February.

    February 12, 2021 6:15 AM by emily.bailey

    Friday, February 12, 2021

    February home improvement checklist | Schlage

    Use this home improvement checklist to help you stay on task and not overlook the projects that will keep your house secure and in good repair.

     

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    The shortest month of the year can quickly feel like one of the busiest. Use this home improvement checklist to help you stay on task and not overlook the projects that will keep your house secure and in good repair. We’ll also help you do a little planning for the future and offer some ideas on how you can use your skills to benefit the community.
    Living room with pink, orange roses and decor and cat playing on rug.

    Indoor home checklist

    With winter still hanging on, you’ll want to tackle these indoor home improvement tasks now.

    checkbox Clean dryer vents.

    Lint buildup can cause your dryer to work inefficiently and become a fire hazard. It’s a pretty simple job. Remove the duct and use a vacuum to clear out the dust and debris. A long, flexible brush can also get any lint left behind. Reconnect the dryer to the duct and you’re done. Don’t forget to check for blockages outside, too.

     

    checkbox Rotate mattresses.

    Flipping and rotating your mattress periodically can help reduce sagging. Doing this every three to six months can help keep it comfortable longer and extend its life.

     

    checkbox Clean the entryway.

    A few months into winter, you’re likely to see accumulation of dirt and clutter in your entryway. Clean the floors, paying special attention to any road salt that’s been tracked in. Tidy up coats and other winter gear that have been thrown haphazardly in the closet. If your rugs or doormats have seen better days, now’s a great time to wash or replace them.

     

    checkbox Do a freezer refresh.

    This is a good time to take inventory of what’s in your freezer and use up random ingredients lurking in the back. It might inspire you to try a new recipe on those nights when cabin fever has you reaching for the phone for takeout … again. And you’ll make room for fresher food come spring.

     

    checkbox Organize bookshelves.

    Do you have magazines you’ve finished and won’t read again? What about books that, if you’re really honest with yourself, you’ll never read? Donate them to a library, school or hospital. Look for a Little Free Library in your neighborhood, too. If you use your shelves to display décor – family photos, vacation souvenirs, gifts from your grandkids – try freshening the look. Rearrange knickknacks, swap out photos or the frames they’re in, or retire any items that aren’t exciting anymore. No matter how you use your shelves, give them a good dusting.

     

    checkbox Clean pet beds and dishes.

    Hopefully you’re doing this on a regular basis, but if you don’t remember the last time you washed their blankets, bedding or food bowls, take care of it now. Throw toys in the wash, too.

     

    checkbox Display fresh flowers

    Pretty flowers are a nice treat to help pull us through these last days of winter. Display them in any room that needs a little boost.

    Outdoor home checklist

    Outdoor DIY projects in February don’t always sound very appealing, but you won’t want to ignore these.

    White tudor home with copper accents during winter.

    checkbox Clear sidewalks and entryways.

    You might still contending with slick surfaces from snow and ice. In addition to throwing some salt down, check that handrails are still secure and that steps are in good shape following winter storms. Make any necessary repairs to avoid missteps and falls.

     

    checkbox Plant berries.

    Yes, you can start planting fresh fruit in February. Watermelon, strawberries and cantaloupe planted now should pay off in spring and summer. Pumpkin seeds take a long time to mature, so now’s a good time to get those started, too. Research what grows best in your zone, though, as this can vary regionally.

    For the future

    Spring is just around the corner. You’ll want to be ready for it.

    Window seat with blue, grey and green pillows

    checkbox Start planning to sell.

    If you’re thinking about putting your home on the market in the spring, start planning now. Decide what home improvement projects you want to tackle to help improve resale value, get estimates from movers and start to purge so you don’t pay to move unnecessary belongings. The Schlage Moving Checklist is a good place to start the process.

     

    checkbox Map out a spring garden.

    Start deciding what flowers you want and in what beds. It might seem a bit early for this, but you’ll be glad for the forethought if you want to force bulbs before the first thaw.

    For the greater good

    If the long winter has you feeling blue, lift your mood by helping someone in the community.

    Minimalist bedroom

    checkbox Donate sheets and towels.

    You cleaned your linen closets and took advantage of sales in January to restock towels, sheets and other bedding. Donate your extras to a thrift store, homeless shelter or even an animal shelter.

     

    checkbox Share the love.

    Send a Valentine’s Day care package to a friend. You could also drop off an anonymous note of encouragement to a stranger or surprise someone with some sweet Valentine’s Day décor.

    In case you missed it

    Need to catch up on some January home improvement projects? Try these.

    checkbox Protect pipes from freezing.

    February can bring some of the lowest temperatures of the year in many regions. The last thing you want is to be without water, hot or otherwise, when frozen pipes burst. Insulate your pipes and take other measures to avoid leaks, flooding or worse.

     

    checkbox Upgrade interior hardware.

    By properly cleaning your door hardware, you’ll keep it looking great and your family could stay healthier. If your locks, door knobs or levers aren’t working like they should, replace them with something that looks and works perfectly.

     

    checkbox Maintain trees and bushes.

    Heavy snow and ice can build up on branches, causing them to break. Remove that buildup to keep them from falling on your home, car or visitors.

    Time to buy

    Holiday deals are over, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still find a bargain on certain items. Here’s what Consumer Reports says are great buys in February.

    checkbox Appliances: Space heaters, string trimmers, snow blowers

     

    checkbox Electronics: Tablets, cell phones

     

    checkbox Home goods: Mattresses

    Find more DIY ideas, home improvement hacks and décor inspiration at the Schlage blog. You’ll also find past months’ checklists to help keep your home in tip-top shape year-round.

     

    How to test a trendy look when you aren’t ready to commit.

    February 11, 2021 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Thursday, February 11, 2021

    Low-commitment trends | Schlage

    Here’s a look at how you can try design trends until you’re sure you’re ready to go all-in.

     

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    Last year at Valentine’s Day, we gave you décor tips for people who are afraid of commitment. We’ve been working on ourselves, but there are still some things we’re hesitant to make permanent. So here’s another look at how you can try design trends until you’re sure you’re ready to go all-in.
    Modern living room with green walls and plant wallpaper.

    Colors of the Year … for a month or two

    When all the paint companies released their favorite colors for 2021, we mostly saw nature-inspired shades to help us find our calm. There were some bolder options, too. No matter which colors you were drawn to, though, you might not want to commit them to all your walls. It is possible to have too much of a good thing. So rather than painting an entire room a color you’re unsure about, try one of these options instead.

    Cabinets or kitchen island

    This one is basically two birds with one stone. Painting cabinets not only lets you sample a color in smaller quantities, but it’s also a great way to get “new” cabinets without gutting the kitchen. For a truly modern look, consider a two-tone paint job, which is popular in kitchen design today. Domestic Imperfection shows one of our favorite looks.

    Doors

    Unless we’re hanging a wreath at holiday time, we often forget to decorate our doors. They’re a blank canvas just waiting for you to add some personality. Paint one or both sides of the door or even just the edge for an added surprise. You might go for a mural or a geometric design if you’re feeling playful. Don’t forget interior as well as exterior doors.

    Textiles and accessories

    As your writer, I love the energy of Glidden’s Aqua Fiesta. Ask me to paint my entire bedroom that shade and, personally, I’ll pass. But ask me to use it on a pillow cover or a vase, and I’m in. Throw blankets, lampshades, area rugs, artwork and even the frames for that art are great low-commitment ways to add splashes of bold color.

    Furniture

    If you’re in the mood to upcycle some furniture, pull in your favorite 2021 colors for the new paint job. Think of how you could upgrade that tired dresser with a new coat of paint and hardware. If you have a chair with a great silhouette, either apply new paint or choose fabric with that color for a new seat cushion. Check out Divine Lifestyle to see what we mean.

    Temporary walls for temporary situations

    Thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, we learned that open floorplans aren’t quite the brilliant design plan we thought they’d be. With everyone trying to study, work and play in the same space, we started to crave additional walls and privacy. When you’re not looking for a construction project or want to eventually return to open floorplans, give these ideas a shot.

    Privacy screens

    Think standalone folding panels you sometime see ladies change clothes behind in the movies. Privacy screens come in multiple sizes and designs, making them a good fit for lots of homes. And because you don’t have to secure them to a wall, they’re the ultimate no-commitment solution. Move them wherever you need them or push them to the side entirely as pure decoration when privacy is no longer needed.

    Bookshelf room dividers

    Dubbed by some as the shelfie, this is a great multifunctional solution. Not only does it create a division between rooms, but it also perfect for storage. Customize it to your style with knick-knacks, plants, books, whatever makes your space feel like you. Plus, if you choose open shelves, it won’t obstruct all light, keeping smaller spaces from feeling too cramped.

    Barn door

    If you’re ready to make a bit of a bigger commitment, try a sliding door. Those on tracks attached outside the wall, like barn doors, don’t require a lot of construction know-how. And if you DIY the door, find a custom-made one to your tastes or choose two that slide to meet in the middle, you can often block off wider openings without sacrificing style or taking up a lot of space.

    Hanging room divider

    Fresh Crush shows how to make a hanging room divider using canvas, fabric and some common hardware. We like this option for its versatility. Choose whatever fabric and colors match the décor you already have. And when you’re done with the panels, you might be able to hang plants or other décor from those bolts as well.

    Vanities you aren’t afraid to love

    Many interior designers are saying upgraded bathroom vanities are going to be a highly desired feature in 2021. There’s an easy way to get the look without the commitment, and they can usually be done on a smaller budget.

    New drawers and doors

    You can paint the cabinetry of your bathroom vanity, just like we suggested for your kitchen. Or you can take it a step farther like Southern Hospitality. This DIYer refaced the vanity cupboards to get the Shaker cabinet look before repainting. It’s a can’t-miss transformation that also won’t leave you missing the money you saved by not overhauling the entire vanity.

    Frame a mirror

    Some of us have a plain mirror hung over the sink with brackets. Frame the mirror to change the overall look. It can be with simple molding or with more glamorous detail like O’verlays picked.

    Lighting

    Maybe your vanity looks a bit sad because the room is dark. Brighten things up with some new lighting. Sconces are a good option and not all of them require rewiring or a call to an electrician. Within the Grove shared an unexpected hack: battery-powered puck lights tucked into real sconces. Talk about a light bulb of an idea.

    Cabinet pulls

    They’re so small, so how does replacing the knobs or handles on a vanity drawer that much of a difference-maker? Sometimes you just need something that pulls all your style together. For example, if there’s black in your floor tiling, choose a black finish for your cabinet pulls. You can do the same with faucets, lighting and other accessories, like Love Grows Wild. Your overall style will look more intentional. You might also look for finishes that with a more luxurious vibe. Apartment Therapy predicts leather will be one of 2021’s most luxe materials, even for drawer pulls.

    Commitment-free Scandinese

    What is Scandinese, you ask? Sometimes called Japandi, it’s a mix of Scandinavian- and Japanese-inspired décor. It focuses on the simplicity and minimalist qualities with strong references to nature, typically found in both styles. If Scandi feels cold and sparse to you, try Scandinese, which is warmed up with the richer and more modern elements pulled in from Japanese design.

    Clutter-free

    Key to Scandinese, just like the two styles that make it up, is the effective use of empty space. That means the furniture and accessories are chosen as much for their functionality as they are for their aesthetic. Once you clear out the clutter and focus on what’s necessary for your life and style, it’ll be easier to see the space you have.

    Plants

    Biophilic design – design inspired by living things – is a trend that just continues to grow in 2021. This is perfect for those creating the Scandinese look in their own home since it relies so heavily on natural elements. Try incorporating indoor bamboo, bonsai plants, orchids and money trees in your design.

    Mix and match

    Natural woods are a must in both Scandinavian- and Japanese-inspired styles. Scandinese marries the two, with lighter, more rustic woods with richer, stained ones. This means that if you’ve already tested the waters of one of these styles, you don’t have to go out and replace all your furniture. Simply swap out a piece here and there until you achieve your favorite look.

    Pendant lighting

    We’re inspired by traditional shoji screens from Japan for this tip. Clean pendant lighting is popular for Scandinese, so a paper lantern-style pendant could be the perfect fit for your new space. The roundness of many of these light fixtures also helps to soften the sharp edges more prominent in pure Scandi design. Don’t want to replace the entire light fixture? Opt for a paper or bamboo lamp shade instead.

    Find more design tips and tricks at the Schlage blog or on Pinterest.

     

    10 WFH upgrades that have nothing to do with desk ergonomics.

    February 5, 2021 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Friday, February 5, 2021

    WFH updates | Schlage

    Here are some upgrades to make your WFH situation more comfortable. And they have nothing to do with decluttering your desk, organizing your pens or choosing the perfect office chair.

     

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    You’ve set up the perfect home office (or gotten as close to perfect as you can), but working from home is still a struggle. Here are some upgrades to make your WFH situation more comfortable. And they have nothing to do with decluttering your desk, organizing your pens or choosing the perfect office chair.
    Father working from home next to son at kids desk.

    1. Open a café

    If you’re like us, you’re making a lot more tea and coffee at home now. Gone are the days of hitting the drive-thru on your commute. It could be worth it to invest in that coffee maker or espresso machine you’ve had your eye on. If you miss the flavor varieties and different creamers in the breakroom, consider a coffee or tea subscription box or treat yourself to a new mix-in.

    2. Create a breakroom

    It can be tempting to “make the most of your time” now that you aren’t commuting. But if that means you’re working, working, working without even taking a lunch break, you’re setting yourself up for burnout. Designate somewhere besides your workspace as a breakroom and retreat there for quick recharges and for lunch. The change of scenery will give your mind the break it needs to focus better later in the day and help to keep you from burning out. Get creative. It doesn’t have to be the dining room table, especially if that’s now your desk. Eat on the porch, kick your feet up on the couch or try a park bench if you need even more distance from your desk.

    3. Set a timer

    Ask Alexa to set a timer so you don’t miss your break, even if it’s just to stretch your legs at your desk, look out the window instead of at your computer screen or make a snack. You can also set “do not disturb” timers, on a smart device or the microwave, for your kids. If you have an important call or need an uninterrupted stretch of time to focus, train others in the house that until the timer goes off, you’re off limits.

    4. Let others self-serve

    Another good way to limit interruptions from family members is to make it easy for them to serve themselves. Put the kids’ healthy snacks at their eye level, post a daily schedule in the command center so they know what their tasks are without having to ask you and make sure they have all the school or craft supplies they need to stay busy.

    5. Make a WFH playlist

    Or a couple playlists. Ingrid Fetell Lee at TED Talks made one to help switch her brain over from household tasks like cleaning up from breakfast to work tasks. You could make another to create a more pleasant working environment. It could be soothing background noise, such as nature sounds or pleasant coffeehouse chatter, or your favorite podcast. Choose whatever makes you feel most productive. You can even use them as a timer, like we mentioned earlier. When your smart speaker starts to play your “break playlist,” it’s time to step away from the spreadsheets.

    6. Prepare for your breaks

    When you’re trying to get into a morning gym habit, people always tell you to pack your bag the night before. Do the same for your WFH breaks. If you want to take a walk to unplug, put your shoes by the door at the start of the day. If you want to do some yoga, set your mat out where you’ll be more likely to use it. If you want to cross some chores off your to-do list – vacuuming can be very therapeutic – empty the bin and filter ahead of time.

    7. Prep your lunch

    Meal prep just like you would pack your lunch the night before when you were going into the office. That way, even if you do have to stay at your desk, you’ll still be able to fuel up for the rest of the day. Remember, a hangry brain is an unfocused brain, so don’t skip meals.

    8. Keep an eye on things with smart devices

    You’re tying to work and you keep hearing the door open and close. Which of the kiddos just left? Or was that someone coming back in? Did they lock up after themselves? Turn to technology like smart locks and video doorbells to help you keep track of your family’s comings and goings without leaving your desk every 30 seconds.

    9. Set fun boundaries

    Achieving work/life balance was difficult before the pandemic. Setting those boundaries hasn’t gotten any easier since. Choose an activity that signals the end to the work day, something bigger and more fun than simply closing your laptop. Then gather what you need to make it happen every day. Use the time you would have spent on a commute home to soak in the tub, fix yourself a treat or practice self-care in whatever way works best for you.

    10. Set up a screen-free hobby space

    When setting your fun boundaries, try to carve out a space that doesn’t involve screens. Some of the most common complaints of working from home are migraines and eye strain from so much screen time. So when you clock out, head somewhere technology can’t touch you. It could be your peaceful garden, the workbench in your garage or a comfy chair where you can just close your eyes.

    Still trying to get that home office just right? The Schlage blog has some WFH design ideas for you. You’ll also find more tips on turning your home into a calming sanctuary and other projects to stay busy while you’re social distancing.

     

    14 Valentine’s Day décor ideas that will make you want to swipe right.

    February 4, 2021 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Thursday, February 4, 2021

    Valentine's Day decor | Schlage

    Will you swipe right for these Valentine’s Day décor ideas?

     

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    Coming on the heels of Christmas and New Year’s, Valentine’s Day décor doesn’t always get the love it deserves. We think it’s time to stop ignoring this February holiday. Go as big and bold, or as simple and understated, as you want. Good things do come in small packages, after all. Will you swipe right for these Valentine’s Day décor ideas?
    Pink couch with Valentine's Day decor.

    Love buzz » @theholtzhouse

    Why have breakfast in bed when you can wake up with this sweet coffee bar? We love the simplicity of it all. Some red and pink touches, a “Be Mine” heart in the caddy and, of course, that banner transform an everyday brewing station into something special.

     

    Gnome sweet » @it_starts_at_home

    We saw these little love gnomes a lot in our research, and the more they popped up, the more adorable they became. @it_starts_at_home put these on their kitchen’s coffee bar, but they’d look great on a mantlepiece, a bedside table or in a gift bag for your sweetie. You can make your own version with this tutorial from It’s Always Autumn.

     

    Quiet love » @shabbychicgirlkc

    It looks like @shabbychicgirlkc gave some of her Christmas decorations some extra life with this Valentine’s Day entryway décor. This is a sophisticated and beautiful way to reuse bottle brush trees. If you’re not a big fan of the vibrant pinks and reds that scream Valentine’s Day, you’ll love this more muted color scheme.

     

    Unexpected flip » @yvonne_motivation

    Turn the décor you have for other holidays on its head – literally – for some unique Valentine’s décor. This upside-down Christmas tree was re-outfitted for February’s love fest. We’re wondering if they have cats.

     

    For the gals » @designstylebymarci

    If you’re planning a Galentine’s Day brunch, you might put together a tiered tray like this one. Load it up with your favorite heart-themed décor, some candy or other treats and you’re ready to go. It’s a great touch for a sideboard, table centerpiece or bar cart.

     

    Simply lovely » @farmhouseinthemeadows

    Here’s another gorgeous neutral-color décor idea. Not only is it the perfect fit for farmhouse-style homes, like this Instagrammer shows, but with a few tweaks, the white and natural materials would also be ideal if you’re more into minimalist or Scandi design.

     

    Young love » @deck.to.farm.charm

    Don’t forget the kiddos on Valentine’s Day. Cute and sweet is the name of the game with this whimsical bed. Even if they don’t have a playhouse-themed retreat, you can still show some love with heart-shaped pillows and other décor. Bonus points if it’s extra snuggly.

     

    Dinner for two » @kseventdecorations1

    Romantic table setting anyone? This event design company provides great inspiration for how to make a night in extra special. So move the dinner party-for-two to the floor – be sure to grab some extra comfy cushions to sit on – light a few candles and enjoy each other’s company.

     

    Love your best friend » @insta.camgram and @toby_._hope

    You can never go wrong with roses … and pets. No matter who or what you love, some fresh flowers will go a long way toward making a space feel festive. Whether it’s red roses, pink carnations or a handpicked wildflower bouquet, display something that brings a smile to your face.

     

    7 simple ways to decorate your front door for Valentine's Day.

    January 29, 2021 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Friday, January 29, 2021

    DIY Valentine's Day door decor | Schlage

    Here are seven of our favorite ways to easily make your home more festive for Valentine's Day.

     

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    With Valentine's Day right around the corner, give your home a cheerful boost with a simple DIY project. Here are seven of our favorite ways to easily make your home more festive for the upcoming holiday. Love is knocking. Will you answer?

    1. Upgrade a winter wreath

    If it feels like you just caught your breath after the busy holiday season, try adding a touch of Valentine's Day to your existing winter décor. We love how Amy Lou Hawthorne styled her winter wreath by just adding a little pop of pink and red. It's a simple way to feel a little festive without too much effort. Get even more Valentine's Day inspiration from her perfectly styled Instagram feed.

     

    2. DIY for multiple seasons

    We can always count on Ann of On Sutton Place to have the perfect tutorial for festive front door décor. This DIY heart wreath is swoonworthy and perfect for both Valentine's Day and the spring season, making it worth the effort.

    3. Put your bouquet on the door

    This asymmetrical wreath looks like a classic bouquet but for your door. Adriane of Branch and Bloom uses silk flowers and a grapevine wreath for this gorgeous design. You can check out her online shop or follow her on Instagram to get inspired for your next DIY project.

     

    4. Find hidden hacks on a budget

    You’ll never guess what’s hiding behind those uplifting flowers. Keeping It Simple Crafts used a splatter screen – that thing that keeps spaghetti sauce from making a mess of your stovetop – as the frame for her wreath. Almost all of the materials came from her local dollar store, making this inexpensive project look like a million bucks. Watch her video tutorial on YouTube.

     

    5. Don't spend a dime

    In similar fashion to Amy Lou's easy upgraded winter wreath above, take a classic boxwood wreath and add a printable banner like Jamie Lyn of I Heart Naptime.

    6. Make a statement

    Every year, we see this popular wreath sold on Etsy pop up in our social feeds and we can see why. It's an adorable way to spread a little love that will last for many years.

    7. Go all in

    Why stop at just a wreath? All Cute Details not only spruced up her front door with some décor that will transition nicely into spring, but the signs for her front porch and details on the bench show just how much love you’re bound to find inside this home.

     

    There are even more front porch décor ideas for Valentine’s Day and other holidays at the Schlage blog and Pinterest. We’d love to see what you’re doing, too, so don’t forget to share your photos with us on Facebook or Instagram.

     

    Budget-friendly storage solutions for anywhere in your home.

    January 22, 2021 9:02 AM by emily.bailey

    Friday, January 22, 2021

    Storage hacks | Schlage

    Try some of these storage hacks with items you can use multiple ways and in nearly any room of your house.

     

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    When we say we’re going to finally get organized, we often immediately turn to storage containers. All of a sudden, we’re consumed with plastic tubs, under-the-bed totes and rollaway racks. Don’t shop for hours trying to find the perfect bin, only to spend too much money on something that doesn’t work like you wanted it to anyway. Instead, try some of these storage hacks with items you can use multiple ways and in nearly any room of your house.
    Storage rack with organized linens.

    Shallow, open tubs or baskets

    These are great for storing objects you use frequently but have odd shapes and won’t stack neatly. Instead of giving them free reign of your cupboards, store water bottles, travel mugs and Tupperware in shallow tubs or baskets. You’ll be able to see what you need quickly and when you keep the container in the same area as the lid, you’ll always have a match.

     

    Pull-out shelves are super convenient in kitchens, bathrooms and closets, especially if mobility and balance are a concern. It makes it easier to find things without bending down or crawling in the back of a cabinet. While it isn’t terribly difficult to retrofit your existing cupboards, an even quicker solution is those low and shallow tubs. Pull out the bin you need, search through it on the counter, then slide it back where it belongs.

    Wire racks

    The type of rack you choose is as varied as how you use it. It could be a rack that’s actually designed for organizing kitchen cabinets, or you could upcycle an old file organizer. Either way, use them vertically or horizontally as space allows and stack your cookie sheets, lids for pots and pans, smaller baking dishes or cutting boards on them.

     

    If paper clutter is more of an issue, use them in an entryway or command center. Assign each rack to a different family member or purpose. Organize mail, schedules, shopping lists, homework and permission slips that need to make it in a backpack or purse before you leave the house.

     

    If you or a family member are crafty, use a wire rack to organize your supplies. It could be construction paper, scrapbooking material or coloring books. It might also be the perfect system for organizing gift boxes, greeting cards and other wrapping supplies.

    Tension rods

    We usually use tension rods for hanging curtains, but there’s no need to stop there. Put a shorter one under the sink and hang bottles of cleaning supplies on it. This works in the kitchen or the bathroom.

     

    Another bathroom storage solution is hanging a tension rod in the shower. Use it for loofas, baskets with shampoo and other necessities if you don’t have a shelf or enough ledge space for the whole family’s needs.

     

    Do you need more space to hang clothing and accessories in a closet? Add another tension rod. We tend to waste a lot of space in the lower half of our bedroom closets. Customize it with a rod toward the bottom for hanging pants. Tension rods are also good for storing scarves, ties and belts, especially in those narrow unused spaces at the sides of the closet. In an entryway closet, hang baskets from the rod as an alternative to shelving or cubbies and have kids store all their “get-out-of-the-house” gear there. Finally, tensions rods in a closet can make for an instant shoe rack.

    Over-the-door shoe organizer

    We’re big fans of over-the-door shoe organizers for things other than shoes. These sheets of pockets come in either plastic or fabric to fit your needs and style. One place to hang the organizer is in an entryway closet. The pockets are big enough for most shoes as well as gloves, sunglasses, keys and portable chargers. If you have a dog, it’s an ideal place for their leash, poop bags and toys. Don’t make them wait for walkies.

     

    Hang it in the kids’ room or play area for toys and craft supplies. The lower pockets especially will let them self-serve when they need crayons or that one particular stuffy they can’t sleep without.

     

    Try an over-the-door shoe organizer in the bathroom to store toiletries. This could be your hair dryer, extra toothpaste or your travel-sized shampoo collection. The organizer works great in a linen closet or even just on the back of the main bathroom door.

     

    We could go on and on. Hang the organizer in your bedroom for accessories, whether jewelry or work attire like ties and belts. Put it in the office for spare electrical cords, business cards you’ve collected or spare supplies like Post-It pads and pens.

    Pegboards

    Perhaps the two most common places for pegboards are the garage and kitchen. In either location, these are a great way to customize hanging storage. Tools, pots and pans, even spices can have odd shapes, making storage difficult. With a pegboard and some hooks, however, you can adjust as your needs change and make sure everything is within reach when you need it.

     

    Don’t stop there, though. Because another benefit of storage pegboards is that you can make them as big or small as you need, they’re great over your office desk or in a bathroom as a jewelry rack. We’ve also seen this as a storage solution for small rooms and apartments. One large pegboard painted in a fun design allowed Our Sixth House to combine artwork with shelving in a single, compact project.

     

    One final note: Don’t think that you have to hang your pegboard vertically. Queen Bee of Honey Dos installed one in a deep drawer to organize her dishes. We can see this pegboard hack in any number of drawers, from a desk as a makeshift filing system to a linen closet for organizing towels.

    Labels

    Especially if you’re going to get organized by storing items in closed containers or drawers, you’ll need labels to make locating the contents easier. If you can’t find them, you’ll forget you have them and end up wasting money to buy more. Get a traditional label maker. They can be pricey, but most people think they’re worth the investment. To label glass containers like pantry jars, try a paint pen. Chalk paint or adhesive chalkboard paper are also fun alternatives.

     

    For little ones who aren’t reading yet, organize their toys in bins with picture labels. Have a box full of Legos? Put an image of the blocks on it so there are no more excuses for stepping them.

    Another great way to save money on storage is to upcycle items you already own or that you find at garage sales. If you’re up for a little DIY project, find ideas on the Schlage blog, starting with creative ways to upcycle old doors and door hardware.

     

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