five things we learned last week

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1) Stop saving pet and human hair; it WON’T help with the oil spill. Thanks to reader Heckman for sending us a link to the LA Times, who had reported several times on the efforts to collect hair for oil cleanup. Unfortunately, it turns out that the hair is too heavy to make a good cleanup boom — it sinks. Let’s hope the spill is stopped — and soon.

2) Your knives are as dull as ours were. Alyson says: “Dude. My knives needed to be sharpened when I bought them two years ago and I keep telling myself to buy a sharpener (apparently a honing rod is the way to go?) and still have not.” See Megan B.’s knife-sharpening revelations right here.

3) Apparel as decor is great for evoking happy memories. Jenney says: “When my husband and I first got married, we had very little money but lived in a great shopping area. We were browsing in a shop and he spotted a party dress that he said would look fabulous on me….I still love the dress and the memory of starting a joyful marriage feeling treasured, so I haven’t wanted to get rid of it. We recently bought a house where I have my own room for painting, crafts, and sewing, and so I put it on my dress form as a decoration. I see it every time I go into the room and feel happy and in love with my husband all over again. It is my favorite of all our decorations!” Jenney, we love that story — thank you for sharing. Click to read the whole story and see more apparel as decor.

4) Water, water everywhere on your unnecessary product wish lists. Jacuzzis, soaking tubs, indoor pools — when we’re decorating purely in our imaginations, we all seem to equate water with luxury. Carolyn says: “I can’t believe I’m not the only one that would get an indoor lap pool! I had no idea they’re so popular. I just checked out the Endless Pools website, and they start at $20K. That’s insane!” What unnecessary home product would you buy…if you could?

5) Brass? Resounding “no.” Are we all children of the ’70s with bad memories of brass decor? You’d think so from the comments on our post on new brass outdoor seating from DWR. Michelle V.K. says: “Can’t do it. In my mind, the only time brass is acceptable is on a vintage brass bed. And that only works if it’s contrasted with the right kind of bedding, accessories and other furniture in the room.” (Mary T. confesses she has a suspicion that brass may start looking cool to her in a few years’ time. Maybe. Perhaps.)

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