Our Best Rooms

Browse hundreds of decorating photos and discover fresh ideas for your home. From kitchens to bedrooms, living rooms to bathrooms, you'll find inspiration for every room in your home. Find ideas by style, from traditional to modern, cottage to eclectic.

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Personalize a Pillow

Put your personalized stamp on a plain pillow with this easy monogramming technique starring paint.

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Weekend Projects

Give your home unbeatable character in just one weekend. These home projects offer quick, impactful solutions to fill your indoor and outdoor spaces with style and function. Whether you seek easy landscaping plans, curb appeal projects, or budget decorating ideas, these hand-picked updates are designed to bring out your inner weekend warrior.

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Top Flea Markets

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Deck Decorating & Styling Tricks

Make your deck as comfortable and stylish as an indoor living room. These tricks show you how.

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Threads for Stitching

With so many products on the market, choosing a thread for cross-stitch can be a challenge. Here's what you need to know.

You can use most types of thread for counted cross-stitch embroidery projects. Six-ply cotton embroidery floss comes in the widest range of colors, including variegated colors. It separates easily into single or multiple plies for stitching.

When you want to use a different fabric, experiment on a scrap of the fabric until you achieve the desired effect. A larger number of plies will result in a rich or heavy embroidered piece; a smaller number will create a lightweight or fragile texture.

Rayon and silk flosses are very similar in weight to six-ply cotton embroidery floss but have a greater sheen. Either can be interchanged with cotton floss, one ply for one ply, but because rayon and silk have a "slicker" texture, they're slightly more difficult to use.

You'll find pearl cotton in four sizes: #3, #5, #8, and #12 (#3 is thick; #12 is thin). Pearl cotton has an obvious twist and a high sheen.

Flower thread is a 100 percent cotton, matte-finish thread. Substitute a single strand of flower thread for two plies of cotton floss. Another popular product is overdyed thread. Most of the threads have an irregular, variegated, "one-of-a-kind" appearance. Cotton floss, silk floss, flower thread, and pearl-cotton threads are available in this form. They produce a soft, shaded appearance without changing thread colors.

Specialty threads add a distinctive look to cross-stitch work. They range in weight from hair-fine blending filament, usually used with floss, to 1/8-inch-wide ribbon. Specialty threads include metallic threads, richly colored and textured threads, and fun-to-stitch, glow-in-the-dark threads.

Use wool yarn for cross-stitch as well as needlepoint or crewel embroidery. Use one or two plies of three-ply Persian yarn, and select even-weave fabrics with fewer threads per inch when working cross-stitches in wool yarn.

Ribbon -- silk, rayon, and polyester -- provides an interesting texture for cross-stitching, especially in combination with flower-shaped embroidery stitches. Look for straight-grain and bias-cut ribbons in solid and variegated colors and in widths ranging from 1/16 to 1-1/2 inches.

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