{friday finds: 4 simple steps for staining your deck}

Staining your deck is quite a process. However, it does not need to be an ordeal. In fact, it can be a simple process as long as you’re able and willing to do a little work. Trust me, I just went through the process. Perhaps you’ve heard the stories of power washing, sanding, staining, applications of lacquer followed by more sanding, staining, and more lacquer. While you can approach your project with this level of elbow grease, here are four simple steps for staining your deck.

sanded deck

Ready To Go

Evaluate the condition of your deck

What was previously on your deck? Had it been stained or was it painted? Typically, a deck that’s been painted will show signs of peeling, flaking and chipping. A deck that has been stained may need to be power washed or sanded. If there are loose boards, try to secure them or if necessary, replace them.

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{window treatment thursday: why solera shines so bright}

When Hunter Douglas introduced Solera window treatments in 2012, they were an immediate hit – an exciting new alternative that combined the soft folds of roman shades with the efficiency and practicality of honeycombs. And now the soft shades known for their beauty and versatility have even more options, with more colors, textures and fabrics available this year – along with a new motorized version.

“It’s just an upgraded look from honeycomb shades,” says Bonnie West of Hirshfield’s Shop at Home. “It’s just a much richer look than a honeycomb shade and less expensive than a roman shade.”

Sloan Light Filtering – Solera by Hunter Douglas

It’s also a finished look. “If you just have a honeycomb shade, you still need a valance or side panels to finish the room off,” she notes. “But with the Solera, it looks nice on its own. You don’t have to add any treatments to make it feel finished.”

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{friday finds: new thibaut book with natural beauty}

After the success of its Natural Resource book, it’s no surprise that Thibaut Design is back with more.  Natural Resource Volume 2 is now in our stores, encompassing raw materials and specialty papers like printed corks, sisals, paperweaves and metallic linens – a new Thibaut book with natural beauty.

RO-TazaCork

Taza Cork – Thibaut Design

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{wallcovering wednesday: new williamsburg prints}

York’s newest wallpaper collection is inspired by the textiles, maps and architecture of Colonial Williamsburg. The “Trend Meets Tradition” collection fuses American craftsmanship with the international influences that accented homes in the era.

WILLIAMSBURG is the latest line licensed by Williamsburg Brands, drawing on the extensive design archive of the not-for-profit Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.

Isham Indienne - YORK Wallcoverings

Isham Indienne – YORK Wallcoverings

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{design inspiration: home staging gives new life to tired rooms }

Are you tired of the same old, same old? Think your bedroom feels tired, your living room needs life, or your dining room feels drab? You may be ready for a mini makeover. It’s time for some home staging.

Jay Nuhring is an interior designer with a background in home staging. He likes to work with existing furniture, rather than replacing it – and says some rooms can be almost completely transformed by rearranging the furniture.

Living Room that Flows - Jay Nuhring House Styling

Living Room that Flows – Jay Nuhring House Styling

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{choosing colors: going from beige to greige}

I love to decorate my home and it never ceases to amaze me how much color can transform a room – from paint to accessories. For years (seriously, I think for a whole decade), my house was draped in paint from Hirshfield’s with names like Tobacco Road, Accessible Beige and Golden Thread.

Benjamin Moore popular gray paint colors

The best of Benjamin Moore’s grays

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{hirshfield’s hives 2015}

bees May 2015

Friday Finds: Update on Bud’s Bees

Last Spring, Bud and Hans Hirshfield teamed up with the University of Minnesota’s Bee Lab and introduced two honeybee colonies to the environs just outside of downtown Minneapolis. Hive #1 flourished throughout the summer, but Hive #2 lagged behind and towards the end of the summer the U of MN Bee Squad replenished the hive with additional bees. Winterized and set up with plenty of food we hoped for the best.

Unfortunately, Bud’s Bees were part of the 51.2% of colonies that did not survive the winter here in Minnesota. Varroa mites and insecticides are what experts feel are putting the most stress on colonies.

Hirshfield’s bee lovers are so thankful Bud and Hans want to continue working with the University of Minnesota’s Bee Squad for another year. Approximately 30,000 bees are back on the roof and foraging for desirable food where they can find it. Bud’s Bees are lucky to be close to the Bryn Mawr neighborhood with their multitude of flower and vegetable gardens.

looking for the Queen

The Bee Squad is making certain we have a Queen in the new batch of bees.

Bees supplement

Supplementing the hives with sugar-water and a food pattie.

One thing that you can do to help the bees is to buy plants that are neonicotinoid free. Check with your local garden center (not a big box store) and see what they carry in neonicotinoid free plants. To read more about Bachman’s going neonicotinoid free last year, click on this link.

The statement below is from the U’s Bee Lab Facebook page:

“Clean food for bees is very important. We also see many different types of pesticides in pollen collected for bees. So it is important to protect our pollinators by making sure they have great nutrition sources as well as using all pesticides carefully.”

Since Frank and Elizabeth Hirshfield opened their first store in 1894, it has been our mission to do the best job possible meeting customer needs and solving customer problems. Hirshfield’s. People and products you can trust.

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