This Old House1 min lettiArchitecture
Wary Of Marble? Try It As An Accent
As a vertical surface, a marble backsplash sustains fewer spills and less wear and tear than a horizontal work top—like this showstopping mosaic set in a field of ceramic subway tile. To help keep both marble and grout fresh-looking and to protect fr
This Old House3 min lettiArchitecture
Queen For A New Day
When Michael Campopiano took his son to see the house he’d just bought, 9-year-old Giulian took one look at the ramshackle building and turned to his dad. “You can’t show this to Mommy,” he advised. “She will never live here.” Giulian’s worry was und
This Old House2 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Battery-powered Snow Movers Make The Grade
A FEW YEARS AGO, you couldn’t be blamed for giving the cordless snowblowers at home centers a pass. Their anemic builds, with weak batteries and narrow augers, limited their usefulness to modest walkways. But now efficient brushless motors and better
This Old House5 min lettiArchitecture
Just Right
It’s not a big-deal house, and renovating it was no big deal either—most homeowners would be happy to post a few “afters” on Instagram and enjoy the applause. But Joan Osofsky, who bought the place the minute she first saw it, then poured her heart a
This Old House1 min letti
Got A Light Dusting? Try These Tools
Don’t hang up your leaf blower come winter—use it to zap light snow from entry steps and porch railings. The Ryobi 40470VNM is one of the quietest; powered by a 40V, 4-amp-hour battery, its brushless motor blasts snow away at 550 CFM. $199; ryobitool
This Old House2 min lettiPolitics
United States Postal Service 2020 Statement Of Ownership, Management, And Circulation
This Old House2 min letti
Recycling Realities
MORE TIME AT HOME has meant more deliveries, and fuller households have led to fuller recycling bins, increasing the confusion about what exactly goes in them. What to do with all the plastic bags? Do bottle caps stay on? What if there’s a bit of pea
This Old House2 min lettiArchitecture
Directory Nov/dec 2020
COVER: See the listing for “Light Touch.” TOOLKIT (pp. 7–12) Block plane > Thanks to Thomas Lie-Nielsen, founder and CEO, Lie-Nielsen Toolworks, Inc., Warren, ME; Energy myths > Thanks to James Graham, sales engineer, Runtal North Am
This Old House1 min letti
Keep Winter Displays Looking Fresh
Help outdoor arrangements last through the winter with these pointers from TOH landscape contractor Jenn Nawada. Get off to a good start by rehydrating clippings as soon as you gather them: Cut stems at a 45-degree angle to maximize water absorption
This Old House1 min letti
Save This Old House
PRICE $75,000 LOCATION Winnsboro, SC CONTACT Mike Bedenbaugh, Preservation South Carolina; THE HISTORY Said to have been built by a successful local tailor, this circa-1825 Federal-style house had four more owners before becoming
This Old House3 min lettiArchitecture
Save Energy, Save Money? Maybe…
1 Closing forced-air registers in unused rooms saves on heating and cooling costs. In fact, the opposite is true. Shutting down the flow of heated or cooled air to a room increases pressure (known as “back pressure”) in a forced-air system, so the bl
This Old House1 min letti
Room At The Top
ONE THING LEADS to another is as true in renovating as in the rest of life. Just ask Kusum Mathews and Dave Schwaderer, owners of a 1920 Colonial Revival in Pelham, NY, who set out to fit a bath in the former attic that holds all of the bedrooms for
This Old House7 min lettiTechnology & Engineering
Live-smarter Jump Start
WHO’S IN CONTROL Much of the charm of a smart home is being able to control lights, music, thermostats—you name it—with simple voice commands, so it matters what is listening. While an open smart-home connectivity standard is in development, which pr
This Old House2 min lettiComputers
Better Internet
Consider ditching the modem you’re renting and buying one; depending on your cable bill, it could pay for itself in a year and deliver better performance. Pocket the savings, or boost your Internet speed—although 200 Mbps is likely plenty for a famil
This Old House7 min lettiArchitecture
Farmhouse Fusion
When you’ve been building houses for nearly 40 years, you know what excites the people who will someday live in them. Expansive gathering spaces. Luxurious personal spaces. Flexible spaces for work or for play. Jerry and Sandy Effren, the husband-and
This Old House1 min lettiArchitecture
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This Old House2 min letti
Oval Coffee Table
SCOTT ADAMS HAS FOND MEMORIES of his great-uncle Bill’s sawmill, a trove of sawn lumber and salvaged house and factory parts that Bill sold and bartered. After he died in 1999, the machinery was sold off and the buildings fell into disrepair, but the
This Old House2 min letti
Keep Warm, Stay Connected
One small positive of the months spent in lockdown has been how we’ve embraced our outdoor spaces. We just feel better, and safer, outside. Where friends and neighbors were once away from home all day or ensconced indoors with climate control, the wa
This Old House8 min letti
This Old ask House
TOH GENERAL CONTRACTOR TOM SILVA: Railing systems made of taut, stainless-steel cables initially became popular as an alternative to traditional deck railings because they don’t obstruct the view. But today, these 1⁄8-inch cables are used in all kind
This Old House1 min letti
On My Winter Wish List
Sound and light: With hurricane-lamp styling, this app-controlled LED Lantern Speaker delivers up to 7 hours of dimmable light and crisp, omnidirectional sound on a single battery charge. $110; ■
This Old House2 min letti
DIY Smarts
Last year, after we purchased our first home, we went outside to hang some Christmas lights and discovered there were no outlets. How do we go about installing one? —DEX MISICHKO, SOLON, OH MASTER ELECTRICIAN HEATH EASTMAN: A licensed electrician can
This Old House2 min letti
Tom’s Pocket Plane
The No. 102 low-angle block plane that made its debut in the 1877 catalog of Stanley Rule & Level Co. was a 5.-inch-long, all-steel tool designed to slice through tough end grain, such as butcher blocks. But carpenters found that the palm-size No. 10
This Old House2 min letti
Is there a simple technique for drawing an ellipse? I’d love to use that shape on future projects. —CLAY ALLEN, LUBBOCK, TX TOH MASTER CARPENTER NORM ABRAM: An ellipse is a special type of oval often seen in the archways of classically inspired homes
This Old House1 min letti
One Plane, Three Ways To Work It
For maximum control: the two-handed push stroke Place the thumb of one hand on the finger rest, grab the sides of the plane body with the thumb and fingers of your other hand, and nestle the cap in your palm. Then push away from your body. For the lo
This Old House2 min lettiArchitecture
Light Touch
Tudors have a dark reputation—literally. Their lowlight interiors are typically rich with exposed timbers, stained glass, and burnished-oak millwork. How to create a kitchen that’s a pleasant partner to those elements, while fully functional for toda
This Old House1 min letti
A Welcome Idea For Old Tools
Got a collection of rusty spades, loppers, edgers, and the like? Give them an impressive second life as the focus of a unique entry gate. If you’re going to DIY, just keep these tips in mind: Build the frame using a weather- and rot-resistant wood su
This Old House1 min letti
Renovation Recap
THE HOMEOWNER: Drew Evans, an ex-Manhattanite and interior decorator (above). THE HOUSE: An existing 1,415-square-foot, circa-1880 schoolhouse in Ancram, New York, that served as the local town hall from the 1960s to the 1990s, then as an antiques st
This Old House1 min letti
Problem-solvers under $20
Clogged sink? Slip the flexible, 18-inch wand of FlexiSnake’s Drain Weasel down the drain and twirl the crank; micro-hooks at the tip snag debris so you can fish it out. Then toss the replaceable wand. $5.78 (with two wands); Gorilla’s
This Old House1 min lettiArchitecture
Calling All Cooks
When a family that likes to cook all get going at the same time, things can get pretty hot in the kitchen. No wonder the Clulows, owners of a Victorian-era farmhouse in Lakeville, Connecticut, were looking for extra elbow room, smarter workstations,
This Old House1 min letti
Squirrel-proof Bulb Plantings
— PLANT WHAT THEY DON’T LIKE. Squirrels and chipmunks avoid daffodils—which are poisonous—as well as alliums, scilla, hyacinth, grape hyacinth (muscari), fritillaria, camassia, chionodoxa, snowdrop (galanthus), and summer snowflake (leucojum). Tulips
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