Category Archives: Homekeeping

Creative Winterization

5 ways to cozy up your home

Reclaiming your spaces is certainly a post-holiday perk.  No longer are you tripping over boxes and bows – or continually sweeping up tree needles.  But after the festive feeling of the holiday season, some of us may feel like our homes are a bit stark once the trimmings are all packed away.

With the cold weather, we’ll be spending more time inside than ever. Here are 5 easy ways to “winterize” your decor, to give your home more of that warm ambiance we love to snuggle up to.

canvas-flatweave21. Colorful Accents

Keep spirits bright with strategically placed pops of color throughout your home. It doesn’t take much: you can invest in bold decorative pillows, a cheery bedspread or a multi-colored throw for the living room. Bonus: These colorful accents will happily stick around, inspiring you for spring and summer decor, too.

candles in mirror2. Warm Reflection

Using mirrors as part of your home decor reflects light, helping you maximize it on these shorter days.

At night, candles place in front of a mirror creates a stunning effect, making it look like you have twice as many candles burning!

dash and albert 3. Snug as a Bug in a…

In addition to the decorative statement they make, area rugs are a great way to  warm up a wood or tile floor.  But a striking decorative rug can also be layered on top of your existing carpet, adding more depth and interest to the room.

Stylecraft lamp4. Lamp it Up

Even if you are not “overhead light challenged” – free standing lamps can be a staple in your home decor wheelhouse. They offer focused light where you need it, and a warm glow to a room when used alone.  And when you’re ready for a change, moving a lamp to a different room couldn’t be easier.

eclectic-roman-blinds5. Get the Full Window Treatment

From kitchen valances to floor length panels, window treatments add texture and warmth from within.  If you like to switch things up seasonally, fabric panels make it easy.  If you’re in the market for a more custom solution, companies such as Levolor (sold at Snow’s) offer a wide selection of blinds and shades, many of which are incredibly energy efficient.

Fall in Love with Home

Four warm ideas for cool weather

livingroom rug#1 Add warmth underfoot.

Accent rugs are a great way to add warmth to cold stone or tiled floors, or add texture and interest to hardwood. Rugs can also help harmonize the design elements in a room – placed under a decorative table, in front of a sofa or in a hallway.

We have expanded our rug selection significantly at Snow’s — with dozens of styles, sizes, colors and materials to choose from.  From traditional striped cotton rugs to blended wool rugs in rich, seasonal colors, you are sure to find just the right rug to warm up your floors this fall. (Photo credit: Houzz)

bamboo-towels#2 Warm up your bath.

For a truly spa-like experience in your own home, consider natural bamboo bath towels. Bamboo is quite versatile, and is uniquely suited for bath towels. In our new line by Kassatex, 60% of the blend is Egyptian cotton, which offers lasting absorbency — and the other 40% is bamboo-made rayon, which makes the towels soft and smooth to the touch.

Bamboo is also a sustainable choice because it grows quickly (renews itself) and requires a minimal amount of chemicals to process. So you can have it all — towels that are eco-friendly, have excellent absorbency, come in a beautiful array of colors, and are sure to add a little extra luxury and comfort to your bath.

fall candles#3 Create a warm ambiance.

There is nothing quite like a flickering candle or two to make a room feel warm and cozy. And while these days, it seems like candles are a dime a dozen, there is a definite difference when you choose a quality brand over a generic variety from a discount store. A good candle starts with good ingredients: the wax, wick and fragrance oils.  It takes skill to make all these parts come together, which is why it really means something when a candle is said to be handcrafted.

Snow’s carries only excellent-quality candles that smell great, burn clean and last for a long time. The hardest choice will deciding on the color and fragrance! One of our fall favorites is Kringle Candle Company’s Apple Cider Donut — without overpowering, it will bring just the right amount of fall “flavor” to your home.

provencal chicken stew#4 Serve a warm and comforting meal.

Although slow cookers can be used any time of the year, the cooler months just seem to beg for comfort food that’s been simmered slowly all day long. We have several slow cookers to match your needs and your budget, many offered at Snow’s Everyday Low Price — a price so low we can’t even advertise it.  So come in and see… and in the meantime, here’s a delicious slow cooker recipe to get your mouth watering!

fall-leaf

 

 

Setting your Seaside Space

10 Home Decor Items to Show Your Coastal Style

Earlier this month, we unveiled Benjamin Moore’s Color of the Year, which just so happens to be a classic shade of blue that inspires the decor of many a Cape Cod home. So this week, we’d like to follow up with ten of our favorite finds – unique home decor accents and fixtures that will help you channel a little seaside bliss all year long.

starfish toilet tissue1. Starfish Toilet Tissue Holder

Bring a little whimsy into your bathroom with this sweet starfish tissue holder. It has a sturdy metal construction (hardware included), painted white so it will match any decor. ($16.99)

lobster hook2. Lobster Hook

Nothing says coastal quite like lobster, and these hooks are a great way to add subtle reminders of clambakes and good times throughout your home. They’re great as towel hooks in the kitchen or the bath, and the ample-sized hook can serve as a hanger for other items, like keys, baseball caps, coffee mugs and more ($8.99)

hydrangea s&p3. Hydrangea Salt & Pepper Shakers

If lobster says coastal, then hydrangeas say Cape Cod… especially those glorious blue ones! Give your table a little spice with these hand painted glass salt and pepper shakers. ($4.99)

lighthouse finial4. Brass Lighthouse Lamp Finial

Isn’t it the small touches that seem to add so much? This tasteful brass lighthouse final by Copper Mermaid brings a little nautical flair to any room when poised atop your favorite lamp. Another made-in-the-USA gem. ($14.99)

5beach rose switch plate. Beach Rose Switch Plate

Speaking of lighting…you can give your switches some love, too. This charming beach rose switch plate features an original design by Anne Kilham, bringing to mind the perfect summer day. ($8.99)

See more switch plate designs

6. Decorative Whale Pillowwhale pillow

One of our very favorites. This 14×20” pillow by Chandler 4 Corners is a lovely example of what they do best: craft modern home decor pieces that incorporate the very essence of America’s roots. Hand hooked and made of wool with a velveteen backing. ($64.99)

cape cod bedspread7. Classic White Cape Cod Bedspread

This is the classic bedroom piece you’ll have and enjoy for years. The white on white Cape Cod seashell pattern has been redesigned from a flat jacquard for matelassé looms. Made in the USA with 100% cotton, this bedspread is a beautiful addition to any bedroom. (Full size: $199.99)  See other sizes and styles

8.cape cod barometer Cape Cod Marine Barometer

The striking silver and brass facings of this marine barometer make it an elegant addition to any decor. It’s amazingly functional, too; signaling weather changes from “foul” to “fair,” it works at elevations of up to 2,000 ft. with no wiring needed. Simply hang it and you’re good to go. ($169.00)

pewter seashell bowl9. Pewter Seashore Bowl

Classic pewter, classic Cape Cod. This statement serving piece from Wilton Armetale is not only beautiful, but incredibly strong and versatile. Guaranteed not to rust, tarnish or break, it can go from freezer to oven to table. The kind of piece you’ll use over and over, you’ll love giving it as a gift to someone special, too. ($54.99)

See more Wilton Armetale

seagull poop candy10. Seagull Poop Candy

Um… just how does this have anything to do with coastal home decor, and more importantly, isn’t that plain disgusting? Well, sometimes we throw something in here just for humor’s sake, but these little “treats” will actually prove your weight as a Cape Cod salty. They are really wild huckleberry jelly beans, made for Snow’s Home & Garden. ($4.99)

seashell

Have a favorite coastal home decor item? We’d love to hear about it. Post a comment here or share your decorating ideas (or questions) with us on Facebook.

 

A Glass Half Full

5 great reasons to get juicing, with a juicer that’s just right for you

juicingSaying that juicing is healthy is like saying that eating candy is not. But while the benefits of juicing have been well promoted, sometimes it just takes an impressive stat or two to really get us to stand up and pay attention.

This may be one of those ‘aha’ moments. Did you know that 95% of the vitamins and enzymes our bodies need to thrive are found in the juice of raw fruits and vegetables?*  To get these vitamins and enzymes, we could certainly eat our fruits and vegetables whole, but if we did, we may not have time for much else. To get the same amount of nutrients found in a 16 oz. glass of fresh, natural juice, you would have to eat two pounds of carrots, about a dozen apples or eight pounds of spinach. Even Popeye might get sick of that.

Juicing is certainly an easy way to get your fill. If you struggle with getting the recommended daily amount of fruits and vegetables, juicing makes it possible to get them all in in just one drink. And beyond the efficient, time-saving nature of drinking your vitamins, the additional benefits of juicing are many, and are certainly not limited to the following list. But if you are looking for five no-brainer reasons to try it, here they are:

1. Boosted immunityJuicing is high in antioxidants, which not only helps boost your immune system, but it also can help you recover more quickly when you do fall ill.

2. More energyJuicing removes the fiber from you fruits and vegetables, so the juices are more easily digested.  This conserves our body’s energy, so many people feel energized after a glass of fresh juice (opposed to that feeling, say, after Thanksgiving dinner!).  Of course fiber is a good thing, so make sure to include it in your diet aside from juicing. But for a quick burst of energy, juice is the word.

3. Weight loss. The great enzymes in fresh fruit and vegetables are easily converted into energy when you absorb them a natural juice, which helps increase your metabolic rate.  The higher your metabolism, the easier it is for you to burn calories naturally, even while you’re sleeping!

4. Healthier (insert your preference here) Skin, Hair, Nails. The best way to acheive healthy hair, skin and nails is through your diet. Fruits and vegetables known to produce beneficial results include cucumbers, ginger, seaweed (or green leafy vegetables) and lemon. Just think about all the lotions and spa products that boast these foods in their goods. Drinking them is like taking the express train.

5. Drinking your veggies may be a tastier way to go. Juicing helps most people eat a wider variety of vegetables; those that might not be as appealing in their whole form can be “snuck” into a blended juice with tasteful success. When kale is blended with apples, ginger, lemon and honey (as in this juice recipe from Seamis Mullen), it’s pretty darn delicious. 

So, if you’re feeling “juiced” about all of this, you’re ready to take juicing for a spin in your own home. Other than the grocery store or farmer’s market, your first stop is your favorite kitchen department store. At Snow’s, we have several options to fit any use…and any budget.

Note: Linked items are available in our online store. All items are available at our retail store in Orleans. 

What’s the Best Juicer for You?

black & decker citrus juicerBlack & Decker Citrus Juicer $19.99

  • Basic electric citrus juicer
  • Squeezes directly into a refrigerator-ready serving pitcher
  • Adjustable pulp control
  • Small & Large Cones For Differing Sized Fruit

cuisinart juicerCuisinart Citrus Juicer with Pulp Control $29.99

  • Brushed metal finish is a stylish addition to a stainless steel kitchen
  • 3 pulp control settings
  • “Auto-reverse” and “final spin” features to extract the maximum amount of juice
  • Includes recipes

waring pro juice extractorWaring Pro Juice Extractor $79.99

  • More efficient juice extraction gets more out of your fruits and vegetables
  • Extra large feed tube and large, 32 oz. stainless juice catcher
  • Safety interlock system: won’t start until lid is securely in place
  • Includes Waring’s 5-year limited warranty on motor and 1-year limited appliance warranty
  • Sleek stainless steel finish; solid die cast base and cushioned feet

breville compact juicerBreville Compact Juice Fountain $99.99

  • High quality; Breville is a respected brand name in juicers
  • Heavy-duty juicer in a compact size
  • Extra-large feed tube
  • Stainless-steel micro-mesh filter

breville plus juicerBreville Juice Fountain Plus $149.99

  • Professional-grade power juicer
  • Brushed die-cast metal base
  • Different speeds for soft / hard fruits & veggies
  • Keeps cold as fruits & veggies turn into juice
  • Juice pitcher includes froth separator
  • Large pulp catcher (less trips to empty it out)
  • Juices whole fruit and vegetables – no cutting or chopping is required
  • Patented extra large feed chute

Hurom Premium Slow Juicer  $399.99

  • Newest generation of “slow juicer” models: low-speed crushing & pressing mechanism produces highest juice yield
  • Unique technology maintains up to 60% more vitamins when juicing certain fruits and vegetables
  • Makes smoothies, slushes, blended drinks and purees in addition to any kind of juice
  • Maximum pulp control
  • 2 strainers (1 fine, 1 coarse) to juice softer fruits like bananas and avocados, or rougher ingredients like kale, wheatgrass and even nuts and soybeans (strainer is made of ULTEM plastic, 8x stronger than other plastics)
  • Durable (& quiet) 150-watt motor with 10 year warranty

 

With a juicer in hand (and the motivation to add to your healthy lifestyle), all you need are some recipes. There are more out there than you could ever possibly use (a quick Google of “juicing recipes” yielded over 2.5 million search results!), but we hand picked a few to address some specific concerns. Happy juicing!

Juicing Recipes

FOR WEIGHT LOSS

Sweet and full of healthy nutrients, this juice will keep you full and help you slim down. From Juicing for Weight Loss & What’s Cooking America.  

Ingredients:

  • Shredded coconut for sweetness
  • 2 small zucchini
  • ½ medium cucumber
  • ¼ small red cabbage
  • 1 peeled orange
  • 2 red apples
  • 1 cup of blueberries
  • 4 white cauliflower florets
  • 4 kale leaves

Everything can go into your juicer whole, just peel the orange to remove the skin (but leave the nutrient-rich white pith).

FOR ENERGY

A wide variety of mineral-dense fruits and veggies can help increase your energy level. A key tip: always include greens, and beets, too – they are a secret weapon. Beets have many benefits, but one of the best is that they can increase the body’s production of glutathione, which helps detoxify cancer-causing poisons. Recipe from Linda Wagner.

Ingredients:

  • 4 beets (you can include the green tops too!)
  • 5 carrots
  • 2 heads romaine lettuce
  • 1 large handful parsley
  • 2 apples
  • 1 pint strawberries
  • 1 inch knob of ginger
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 grapefruit
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 tangerines
  • 1 large bunch of mint

Simply run all ingredients through a juicer, serve over ice and enjoy! This recipe made a LOT of juice, over 64 ounces. If you want less juice, simply cut the recipe in half.  This juice is delicious and you’ll love the pretty pink color!

FOR AN IMMUNE BOOST

Recipe from bodyandsoul.com 

When it comes to the immune system, two vitamins are particularly crucial: A and C. This juice has both and gives you more than 100% of your daily recommended intake.

Ingredients:

  • Thick slice of ginger
  • 3 medium carrots
  • 4 stalks of celery
  • 4 kiwi fruit
  • A handful of parsley

ONE THE KIDS WILL LOVE

This is so easy, and it’s a good way to sneak in something green. Nice and light, so the kids won’t turn their noses up at the heartier juices ou might be enjoying. From Disneybaby.com: they call it “Giggle Juice.”

Ingredients:

  • 1 large cucumber
  • 1 thick slice of watermelon

*source: livinggreensjuice.com

 

Savor Summer’s Siesta

Vote for Snow's! Finalist: Best Garden Center

Five out-of-the-box activities to add to your summer bucket list

1. Be Happy Home Campers
Pitch a tent in your own backyard

backyard camping funGetting ready for a family camping trip can be a daunting task, but setting up camp in your own backyard is relatively simple. Without much effort, you can have an authentic taste of the great outdoors… with a little equipment and a lot of adventurous spirit.

Here are a few ideas to get you rolling:

  1. Collect leaves from around your property (kids will love this) and paste them into a nature journal; you can research them later to identify each.
  2. Star gaze! You can even do a little pre-Google work to pick out some constellations you might be able to make out in the night skyTell stories around the campfire. They can be as elaborate as the history of your town, or las simple as sharing something great that happened that day.
  3. Play games: Bring out the Scrabble, the cards… what a great chance to spend quality time sans technology with your family and/or friends!

Another benefit to camping at home is that you can raid your own pantry with ease. So maybe branch out from the dogs & s’mores (although they do taste delicious!), and try something a bit more “exotic” like this recipe for Grilled Caesar Salad 

To set up camp, here’s a short list of equipment and supplies that will make your backyard expedition feel like the real deal:

Even more items are available in our Orleans store:


View Larger Map

2. Refresh with a New Lemon Twist
Help the kids with a fun take on a lemonade stand

lemonade standNational Lemonade Day was this past Tuesday, August 20th (who knew?), but that doesn’t mean you can’t continue to celebrate summer’s most refreshing beverage. And, if you want to help the kids or grandkids achieve rock star status selling roadside lemonade, give tradition a little shakeup by making it fizzy!

You may not think of soda when you think of lemonade, but the neighborhood clientele will delight in a cup of this Sparkling Strawberry Lemonade. Simply combine 2 cups water, 1 cup granulated sugar, zest from one lemon (zest one prior to juicing below), 2 cups strawberries, 1 cup fresh-squeezed lemon juice (6-8 lemons) and 2-3 cups club soda. Helping your wee entrepreneurs is also the perfect time to break out your SodaStream (if you don’t yet own the SodaStream system, click here to see how it works); your club soda component just got more efficient and more environmentally-friendly!

SodaStream products at Snow’s

3. Take it from Farm to Blanket
Farmers’ market finds for a perfect late summer picnic

farmers market on cape codFarmers’ markets have literally cropped up all over Cape Cod, so it’s easier than ever to find local, in-season goodies. Head over to one of the many weekly markets (our town of Orleans hosts theirs on Saturdays through November ), and collect a delicious array of ingredients to create this fabulous outdoor meal.

And don’t forget your pic-a-nic basket, Boo Boo!

For more Cape Cod farmers’ markets, see the full list, courtesy of Edible Cape Cod:

4. Make Some Seashore Decor
Turn your beach finds into beautiful home accents

amazing twisted driftwood candle holderSeashells, beach glass, driftwood…we are compelled to collect them on our beach walks, so wouldn’t it be nice to turn them into something worthy of year-round decor?

Here are a few great ideas from around the web:

5. Spiff Up Your Sitting Area
Relive your vacation year-round with a great coffee table book

“Coffee table” books reside in plain view – usually where you would entertain guests – and are often thoughtfully perused during casual conversation or while dinner is cooking. So certainly, a beautiful book that takes you back on a photographic journey through your favorite summer spots is one worth displaying, and it’s no wonder Cape Cod has been the inspiration for many such books.

Here are a few Cape Cod gems:

 

What’s your favorite way to capture the end of summer? Let us know…we’d love to share your ideas.

Yesterday’s Fun and Games

Creating a reason to reminisce for you and your guests

When you think back upon your childhood, you probably have fond memories of visiting a place where time seemed to stand still. Maybe it was your grandma’s house, or a vacation spot to which your family returned year after year. If you live on Cape Cod, you may just be that favorite family member that frequently plays host to vacationing loved ones.

Even though the face of modern leisure activity has changed (and is preserved on an iPhone and uploaded to Instagram!), it’s never too late to recreate a feeling of nostalgia. For a small investment, you can make a big hit on the joy-o-meter by stocking a few classic games and treats for your guests to enjoy, making each visit one more reason to cherish their time here.

GOOD OLD FASHIONED FAMILY FUN: Games and more

MarblesTalk about a game with history: it is believed that cavemen and women played the first crude game of marbles, using small pebbles or balls of natural clay. Today, marbles is certainly thriving (there’s been a National Marbles Tournament every year since 1922), and it’s still an old fashioned game with a simple premise. Taking turns with other player(s), the object is to shoot your marble from outside of a circle into any of the marbles inside the ring. The marbles you’ve knocked out of the circle are yours, and whoever has the most marbles wins. Now the phrase “Don’t lose your marbles” makes more sense!

Chinese CheckersAnother take on marbles is Chinese Checkers. Here, you try to move all of your marbles to the other side of the board by jumping as far as you can. Chinese Checkers is based on a similar game called Halma (Greek for “jump”), invented by Dr. George Howard Monks, an American professor from Boston. And despite the name, the game was actually invented in Germany, not China; as the story goes, it was dubbed “Chinese Checkers” to sound more exotic. It worked, and soon became one of just a few games with widespread international appeal.

Rook: Around since 1906, Rook is a true classic: a spirited card game of bidding, trumping, and trick-taking. It’s a game that both young and old players can enjoy together and is usually played as a partner bidding game (it has some similarities to Spades or Pinochle). The concept is somewhat simple, but it also takes skill, strategy, and a bit of good luck.

Some other classic games:
Cribbage
Chutes & Ladders (kid-friendly)
Tiddly Winks (kid-friendly)
Monopoly
Scrabble
Dominos

“Retro” Games: Having easy, pick-up games like the “Magic 8 Ball”  and a Rubik’s Cube around the house are always fun. Not only do they bring us back in time, they may answer burning questions like “Does he love me?” with an  “It is decidedly so.”

Jigsaw PuzzlesPuzzles are a wonderful way to connect (pun intended) and unplug at the same time. Another pastime with a long history, the jigsaw puzzle was invented in 1767 by John Spilsbury, an engraver and mapmaker. As such, the first jigsaw puzzle was a map of the world; educators used Spilsbury’s first generation of puzzles to teach geography. As they evolved, puzzles became more than a way to exercise the mind, they became a way to relax.

There are as many types of puzzles as there is time to do them, but if you’re going for an old fashioned feel, there are plenty of puzzles featuring images of classic television, 50’s and 60’s household products and food items that will inspire you to stroll down memory lane as you piece them together.

Trains & Cars:  Regardless of your age, building train or race tracks and making some locomotion is always fun. From simple setups to elaborate “loop-de-loops,” this classic hobby will inspire the family to enjoy time building together. 

Lionel trains and hobbies have been around for more than 100 years, and their story is a pursuit of both incredible change and family bonding. Founder Joshua Lionel Cowen was born just before the first electric light, yet he grew up with real trains and lived through amazing advances in their technology and sophistication. His first toy train led to what the company describes as a “sacred mission”, as Cowen would spend a lifetime stoking America’s imagination with the romance of the rails. Up until the 60’s, Lionel train sets were a cultural icon (especially at Christmastime), but then their popularity fizzled for a while, falling somewhere in between the generation gap of the time. Today, America is renewing its relationship with the railroads, and having some trains and tracks to play with at home can be part of the magic.

Toy race cars are another play vehicle with a great history. Matchbox was introduced in the 1950’s. They were names as such for their packaging: the original die-cast cars were housed in a cardboard box that resembled an actual match box.  This vintage packaging phased out as other companies began to use the plastic and cardboard “blister packs,” but the box style packaging was re-introduced for the collectors’ market in recent years.

 

SOMETHING TO SNACK ON: Classic Candy, Gum & Real Soda

How fun to reach into the snack cabinet (or drawer, or closet, or wherever you keep those goodies) and find a treasure trove of treats from days gone by. Packs of Teaberry, Clove or Black Jack gum, or wrapped candies like Chuckles and Necco wafers…happy days!

For some liquid refreshment, there’s nothing quite like old fashioned soda. Sure, there’s the requisite dose of sugar, but no synthetics and none of that evil high fructose corn syrup. The labels alone make you smile, and the flavors are divine. Choose from the brands and flavors you remember fondly, including root beer, (a.k.a. birch beer, sarsaparilla), ginger ales, cream sodas, colas, and fruity sodas like cherry, lemon lime, grape and more…all in traditional glass bottles.

 

The takeaway? Good old fashioned family fun is still in style. Come grab some nostalgia at Snow’s and see how easy it is to make them smile with simplicity.

Save $7 a gallon on Benjamin Moore paint!

Too good not to post.  There are more dreamy colors of Benjamin Moore paint than you can imagine, and May 28-June 2 you can save $7 off a gallon at Snow’s! Just print this page and bring it in to the paint department in either Orleans or Harwich, or mention coupon C858 at checkout.

AND…what better to go with your new paint than some expert advice on colors? Be sure to take advantage of the 2013 Designer on Duty SeriesClick here to read more and register online

Dealing with Summer Traffic

10 easy ways to get your home ready for summer entertaining 

Memorial Day Weekend is just moments away, and if you’re like most of us Cape Codders, that signals the onslaught of summer guests.  Welcome guests, of course, but you might feel pinched for time as you try to get ready for all that fun.

But you don’t have to embark upon a full scale renovation to make your home feel like it’s had a face lift.  Snow’s is your one-stop-shop for these easy, cost-efficient ideas to help you prepare for a season of entertaining.  After all, you should get to relax with your guests, too, right? 

1. Get Squeaky Clean, Not Stinky Clean.

Starting with the basics, you certainly want a clean home for your guests. But before you lug out the dreaded bucket of Windex and Pine Sol, consider the earth-friendly Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day products. Made with plant-derived ingredients and essential oils, these household cleaners are gentle on your home and the earth, and they really do smell good. Available in lavender, lemon verbena and basil. Not only will they be able to eat off your floor, they just might want to!

2. Color with Nature

No time to plant? No problem. Gorgeous planters with flowering annuals and
overflowing hanging baskets are ready to roll. Instant color, wherever you want it. For a kitchen counter or a natural table setting, go for small clay pots filled with edible herbs. Someone wants a little more basil on their tomato salad? Easy… pick it out of the centerpiece!

3. Dinner Plate….or Frisbee?

Not that you’d really want to play frisbee with the elegantly understated acrylic tableware from Keller Charles – but you could! Choose from wonderfully Cape Cod inspired patterns like blue hydrangeas…they look great and they won’t break.  Make clean up even easier by having a few bright vinyl tablecloths on hand.

4. Safe Ambiance

Candlelight is magical, but smoke on the walls, flames near young kids and wax on the tablecloth all leave a little to be desired. This year stock up on LED flameless indoor/outdoor candles: all the ambiance, none of the aggravation.

5. Java Speak

Thanks to Keurig brewers and K-cups, your guests will feel pampered when you give each them the coffee or tea they enjoy. Choose from decaf to dark roast and everything in between, plus flavors ranging from the”standard” like French vanilla and hazelnut to creative blends like raspberry chocolate truffle and “Jamaica Me Crazy”. No fussing with a kettle of water for the tea lovers, either: green, lemon…Starbuck’s Zen tea: there’s truly something for everyone.

6. Cook at the Beach

You can… with a programmable crockpot.  Crockpots may make us think of wintery stews, but there’s nothing better than spending a day at the beach while supper cooks at home.  There are lots of recipes that work for warm weather, too: think pulled pork sandwiches, chili to adorn those grilled hot dogs…even potato salad!

7. Outdoor Furniture Makeover

Nothing brightens up a piece of weathered furniture like new paint. For the how-to on sprucing up an adirondack chair, outdoor table or just about any other piece you can think of, check out one of our previous blog posts, courtesy of our friends at Benjamin Moore.

8. Throw it Around

With a minimal investment, you can make a decorative statement with a few new throw pillows and rugs.  We especially love the Chandler 4 Corners pillows that boast a “historically beachy” feel, and the boldly striped rugs from Dash & Albert.

9. Love & Light

Decorative lamps are another home accent item where a little goes a long way.  If you’re “going coastal,” this rope lamp with a Nautilus shell lampshade surely fits the bill. A pair on rustic side tables flanking a comfy sofa is sure to make your guests feel seaworthy. For rooms that have recessed overhead lighting, you can still channel the coast: what says summer better than a handcrafted switch plate that directs you to the beach?

10. The Important Extras

Even though the decorating part is more fun, there are always other to-do’s that need doing.  Need extra house keys for company? Porch screen window not in such great shape? Propane tank for the grill on empty?  Not to worry, Snow’s is here to help.  Bring those keys, screens and tanks (as well as lamp shades, cutlery and more), while you shop, and take advantage of Snow’s convenient in-store services, too. You’ll get those services with a smile, and you’ll be smiling as you leave, because you’ll know you’re ready for showtime.

Summer…bring it on!

Help with Your Home Work

Snow’s Designer on Duty Series

It was an inspiring hour to sit around a table and chat with three design experts yesterday. We were discussing the particulars of this year’s Designer on Duty series at Snow’s, but what I really wanted to do was delve into colors and fabrics and give my home a facelift!

Lori Mead

From now until at least the end of the summer season, you will see either Lori Mead, Madeleine Bickert or Susan Pike at Snow’s in Orleans between 10 a.m and 1 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturdays. The consultants are available to meet with you during your own dedicated 30-minute time slot, so their expertise is completely tailored to you.

Each designer has her own speciality, so it’s certainly worth seeing all of them at least once. Madeleine specializes in space planning, Susan in choosing colors, and Lori in window treatments. Click for more information on each designer

Susan Pike

What is the cost for this, you ask? It’s just a mere $5 to register, and when you come for your appointment the designer will hand you a $5 coupon to use toward any Snow’s purchase – you can’t beat that! Certainly these talented women aren’t in the business of working for nothing, but Snow’s has contracted Lori, Madeleine and Susan to assist customers with their design-related projects and questions as a complimentary service.  The program was born as a natural extension of customers’ frequently asked questions (especially in the paint department). There was a clear demand for more education and expert advice, so bringing in design experts to help seemed to be a very good idea.

Madeleine Bickert

“Designers on Duty” has unofficially been going on for about three years, but this is the first year customers are asked to register in advance and secure a private consultation. It certainly is a half hour dedicated to you, but since we tend to be gregarious and helpful in nature, most people find they can benefit from having others around.  We get inspiration from others, and providing a “wow-that’s-a-really-beautiful-color-you-chose” comment can do wonders to validate someone’s design direction.

Each designer can help make sense of the myriad of choices with colors, styles and materials. And at any given time of year, they are up to speed on what people are thinking about. There are a lot of houses on the market now, for instance, so if you’re selling, you need to make it look turn-key. If you’re buying a new investment property or summer home, you want to get it decorated before the season is in full gear. Designers can help.

People are often intimidated by designers – but don’t be! Especially with this scenario, it’s a chance to get some excellent guidance in a completely pressure-free environment.  If you do decide to hire one of the designers to help you further, you could start with just an hour or two.  A little planning can go a very long way…it’s certainly less costly than painting the living room twice because the color you chose on impulse doesn’t work for you anymore.

Time for a Clean Slate

A Guide to Spring Cleaning

There’s a reason we like to do a good, thorough cleaning come April. After the house has been closed up all winter, we can finally open up some windows and let the fresh air back in. In addition to airing out the house, the warmer weather also gives us a chance to do some of the bigger jobs that are just plain harder in the winter.  For instance, bathrooms are less likely to grow mold when they’re ventilated after scrubbing, and cleaned carpets will dry faster, giving them less opportunity to take on a mildewy odor.

But is there a method to the madness of spring cleaning? Some will definitely say yes.  While no list is the final authority on the subject, we’ve compiled an overview of what you can do to get your home in ship shape for the brighter days of summer.

1. Get organized

No doubt, we all accumulate more in the winter…maybe it’s a nesting instinct that comes with our desire for a cozy home. Nevertheless, it will feel good to eliminate some clutter.

The easiest way to do this without getting overwhelmed is to get a few big boxes for sorting items to keep, donate, or throw away. To organize the things you’re keeping, pick up a few specialty containers that suit your rooms – like an under shelf basket for the kitchen or some pretty rattan baskets for the bathroom. And don’t forget about clothing: as you change over your closets for the new season, you can also weed out what you haven’t worn in awhile and donate it to a friend or a charity.

2. Windows

The windows are perhaps not your favorite task, but it’s a little easier to take when you can get some sun on your face while you do it. Windex® makes an outdoor window and surface cleaner that works great; it can attach right to your garden hose, so you can even get to second story windows safely. It also works on patio furniture, play sets & other outdoor surfaces.

p.s. In addition to hosing down your patio or deck furniture, this is a good time to inspect your pieces for any tears or loose screws, etc.

3. Under the Furniture

See if you can enlist the help of some family members for this one. A strong volunteer can lift the heavy furniture while you vacuum or dust underneath. You’ll be surprised what you might find – maybe you’ll come across that missing earring or an “irreplaceable” Lego piece!

4. Room by Room

Our friends at Bissell came up with a very good checklist for the main rooms in the house. Rather than recreate the wheel, here are the highlights:

Kitchen:

  • Dust down the ceiling, corners of walls, ceiling fan and light fixtures
  • Remove and wash light fixtures if necessary
  • Spot wash walls, air vents, doorknobs, doors, etc
  • Take down curtains, draperies and blinds and clean accordingly
  • Wash the inside and outside of windows
  • Take down screens and rinse off before replacing
  • Clean the oven; leave the windows open when using oven cleaner
  • Wipe down the stove, removing burners, burner covers and spill catchers
  • Clean out the refrigerator and freezer; throw away expired food, wipe down shelves, door handles, etc. and sweep and mop underneath
  • Dust refrigerator coils (UNPLUG REFRIGERATOR FIRST)
  • Wipe down toaster, mixer, microwave, dishwasher and all other appliances
  • Wash all countertops and backsplashes
  • Clean out and organize all cabinets
  • Group like items together to make them easy to find
  • Wash down the sink; put baking soda with warm water and a lemon down the disposal and put ice cubes through the disposal to sharpen the blades
  • Sweep and mop the floor
  • Clean doormats: vacuum, wash, etc.

Bathroom:

  • Dust down the ceiling, corners of walls, light fixtures, vents and fans
  • Remove and wash light fixtures if necessary
  • Spot wash walls, air vents, doorknobs, doors, etc
  • Take down curtains, draperies and blinds and clean accordingly
  • Wash the inside and outside of windows
  • Take down screens and rinse off before replacing
  • Scrub down the shower, tub and toilet
  • Wash sink, faucets and countertops
  • Clean all mirrors
  • Wipe down the inside and outside of medicine cabinets and linen cabinets; throw away expired products, including medicine, makeup and hair products
  • Update first aid kit
  • Shake out and wash all rugs
  • Sweep and mop the floor

Bedroom:

  • Dust down the ceiling, corners of walls, light fixtures, accent lamps, vents and fans
  • Remove and wash light fixtures if necessary
  • Spot wash walls, air vents, doorknobs, doors, etc
  • Take down curtains, draperies and blinds and clean accordingly
  • Wash the inside and outside of windows
  • Take down screens and rinse off before replacing
  • Wash all bedding, including pillows
  • Flip mattress
  • Dust down and clean off dressers, chests, nightstands, desks and other pieces of furniture
  • Clean any mirrors
  • Vacuum, spot treat and deep clean any rugs/carpet
  • Dust and mop hard wood floors
  • Clean out closet, drawers, shelves etc; throw away the items that are unusable and give away or sell items you no longer need, never use or never wear – and put off-season items in storage
  • Organize the remaining clothes, knickknacks, jewelry, books and other items

Dining Room:

  • Dust down the ceiling, corners of walls, ceiling fan and light fixtures
  • Remove and wash light fixtures if necessary
  • Spot wash walls, air vents, doorknobs, doors, etc
  • Take down curtains, draperies and blinds and clean accordingly
  • Replace heavy items with lightweight ones
  • Wash the inside and outside of windows
  • Take down screens and rinse off before replacing
  • Dust and wipe down table, chairs, cabinets and other furniture
  • Spot clean seats
  • Wash tablecloths
  • Vacuum, spot treat and deep clean any rugs/carpet
  • Dust and mop hard wood floors
  • Wash and dry all nice china by hand
  • Clean doormats: vacuum, wash, etc.

Other resources:

Mrs. Meyers: Household cleaning products that do a great job and actually smell good. Made with essential oils from flowers and herbs such as Lavender, Basil and Lemon Verbena. Earth-friendly, cruelty-free and not tested on animals.

Cape Cod Polish (A Cape Cod Company): Soft, reusable cotton cloths containing just the right amount of (amazingly effective) metal polish. Simply wipe away tarnish for your brass, silver, copper, pewter or other metal pieces

Wash Safe (a Cape Cod company): Spring is a great time to clean the roof, too! Wash Safe Roof Cleaner removes roof moss, mold and stains. When applied to the growths on your roof, a reaction occurs causing the roots of the growth to weaken to the point where it can’t feed or absorb water, basically cutting off its nourishment. Starts working instantly.