Last updated: February 19. 2013 4:30PM - 183 Views

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On the shelf

Husband-and-wife designers Robert and Cortney Novogratz share the thought process behind their hip home-decorating style in their new book, Home By Novogratz.

The couple, stars of an HGTV show by the same name, offers a look at 20 homes they've redecorated for clients, including skateboarder Tony Hawk and singer-songwriter Suzanne Vega. All the homes showcase the Novogratzes' signature style, which is contemporary, innovative and often playful.

The book outlines their clients' wishes, briefly explains the redecorating process for each project and even includes budget breakdowns — an uncommon element in decorating books, particularly those that showcase the homes of high-profile people. Ask the expert interviews are sprinkled in, further explaining aspects of the project or giving readers tips and insights.

Home By Novogratz is published by Artisan Books and sells for $35 in hardcover.

What's new

If you've ever torn your cupboards apart looking for the right lid for your food container, you'll appreciate Mr. Lid.

The product is a plastic storage container with a hinged lid that stays attached. (All together now: Why didn't I think of that?)

The container is touted as being microwave and dishwasher safe, and its lid creates an airtight seal. Mr. Lid containers can be stacked for storage.

The containers are available at some Wal-Mart, CVS and Bed Bath and Beyond stores, and they're expected to be available at Walgreens stores soon. They also can be ordered at www.mrlid.com and from online retailers including Walmart.com.

The suggested retail price is $19.95 for a set of 11 containers in various sizes.


Q: A recent article mentioned it's unsafe to use a light bulb with a higher wattage than the lamp or fixture is designed for. I've often wondered how I should know that. For instance, the bulb in my garage ceiling burned out, but I couldn't tell what size bulb to replace it with. I chose caution and used a 60-watt bulb, but that is really dim. Any suggestions?

A: If you don't know the wattage limit, it's usually safe to use a 40-watt bulb, said John Drengenberg, manager of consumer affairs for Underwriters Laboratories.

However, as you already noted, that's pretty dim. So instead of using a traditional incandescent bulb, you might want to use a compact fluorescent bulb, which provides much more light for less wattage. A CFL that uses 40 watts provides roughly the same brightness as an old-fashioned 100-watt bulb.

If your garage is unheated, choose one that's designed for outdoor use. Not all of them are, and you have to read the package to tell.

Not everyone likes CFLs, but for now it's probably your only reasonable option. There are energy-efficient incandescent bulbs available, but the bulbs that are bright enough for your needs are still going to use more than 40 watts.

Eventually you'll be able to buy a low-wattage LED bulb if you're willing to spend the money, but most of the brightest LED bulbs on the market now produce only about as much light as a standard 60- or 75-watt incandescent bulb. (One company, Switch Lighting, makes a bulb that's supposed to be as bright a 100-watt incandescent bulb, but it doesn't produce the warm light most people want in their homes.) I expect 100-watt-equivalent LED bulbs to be introduced before too long, however.

-- McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

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