HomesPlus

Bring It Home Debuts Sunday 2/13 on WGN-TV

A new and exciting local design show debuts on WGN-TV this Sunday, February 13th called Bring It Home. Learn more about the show by visiting www.bringithomechicago.com and become a fan of the show on Facebook.

 

ABOUT THE SHOW

It's time to Bring It Home Chicago. Bring it Home is all about making fabulous home design accessible to everyone. We've teamed up with the editors of Chicago Home + Garden magazine and some of the area's hottest designers to teach us all how to create that designer look - and BRING IT HOME! Each week, Rochelle Vayo Adkinson will get inspired with a peek inside the world of high-end design. Then, she'll be hitting Chicago's furniture shops, home accessory havens and hidden gems to recreate the look with just a few days of off-the-shelf shopping - no custom pieces here, it's all the local stuff that YOU can go out and buy today! Once she's made her selections, she'll be judged by a designer on how her choices stacked up to those designer pieces.

From inspiration to resource guide, Bring it Home will help those looking to update their home or just looking for some new shopping destinations. And of course, we're looking to have some fun on the way...disco dancing in a lighting store? Rearranging a shop to see if your choices will look good together? Testing the sheets in a linen shop? It's all fair game, and it's all happening to Rochelle as she tries to Bring it Home.

Bring It Home: Sundays at 11am on WGN-TV, check local listings for times on CLTV.

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Style File: Sweet Holiday Decor

If you fancy yourself green and you're the proud owner of a sweet tooth, adding a few finishing touches on your holiday decorating should be a cinch this year - especially if you've got some candy left over from Halloween.

The good folks at Wrigley have put out some ideas for mini-decorations and fun projects for you and the kids that are perfect for when you're stuck inside on these frigid winter days.  All you need are some basic supplies (pencil, scissors, glue) and some totally edible decorating items (hint: buy twice as much as you'll need so that you can indulge your sweet tooth as you create!) and their wrappers (remember?  I said it was green.)

Here goes:

Supplies:
•5 Rain gum foil ( for the leaves)
•5 Flare gum foil (for the berries)
•Pencil
•Scissors
•Craft glue
•Styrofoam wreath
•4" piece of red ribbon

HOLIDAY HOLLY
Instructions:
1.Take three pieces of 5 green foil, remove gum and flatten.
2.Using a pencil, draw a leaf shape on the back of foil and carefully cut out with scissors.
3.Place leaves in a triangular pattern, so that the base of each leaf touches in the center. Glue at center point to secure.
4.To make the berries, flatten one or two pieces of red foil.
5.Cut out ¼" circle shapes out of red foil. Glue berries to center of leaves.
6.Use finished holly as package decoration or string together for garland.

MINI METALLIC WREATHS
Instructions:
1.Take twelve pieces of 5 green foil, remove gum and flatten.
2.Wrap green foil around wreath. Secure loose end of foil to wreath with glue.
3.Repeat step three until entire wreath is covered in green foil.
4.Complete the wreath by attaching a red ribbon bow on the top.
5.Use wreaths as ornaments or holiday decoration.Additional tip: Personalize the ornament by gluing a photo in the center.

And keep reading for some edible projects...

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A Home in the Trees

Outgrowing your home but afraid you won't be able to sell in order to move up to a bigger home?  Perhaps you should look to the trees as a spot to create some additional living space.  Tree houses aren't just child's play anymore.  Check out this story from the Today Show, featuring TreeHouse Workshop's Pete Nelson, who says a few years ago, he built a treehouse that cost $360,000.  With a fireplace, kitchen and patio, one of these babies is kind of like a home away from home...Oh, and the kids might like it too.

Watch the video here.

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Luxe Getaways for Less During the Holidays

On Wednesday, my home was clean and organized, smelling like my newest holiday-scented candle while my bright fuschia floral arrangements drew the eye.  Dog hair, clutter and crumbs were non-existent.  That was before Thanksgiving.  But after a weekend of constant company (not that I'm complaining, mom!), cooking and entertaining, I now find myself once again, with piles of laundry waiting to be done, counters to be wiped down and floors to be vaccuumed.  And I feel like I need a vacation from my holiday weekend.  Anyone in the same boat?  Because the craziness of the holidays has just begun, so if you're feeling stressed, maybe now's the time to nip it in the bud.  Which is why I'm so grateful (it is the season for giving thanks after all) that Today Travel has put together a list of Luxury getaways for less during the holiday season.  Because nothing makes you appreciate your home better than getting away from it now and then.

 

Check out the deals available now for a quick getaway - then head to msnbc.com for the full list.

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Style File: Dressing Your Thanksgiving Table

Thanksgiving is about 3 things - taking a moment to be grateful for the wonderful things and people in your life, delicious food, and spending quality time with your loved ones.  So theoretically, you could be eating fried chicken out of the bucket while sitting on the floor and still have a fantastic Thanksgiving.  But if you're hosting the big meal at your place, why not dress it up a bit for your guests and make sure your table setting is a visual treat!  Here are a few items that you could run out and grab today that will dress up your tablescape and not burn a hole in your wallet before Black Friday!

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This weekend on HomesPlus

This weekend we're taking another look at some of our favorite design ideas of the year - from the amazing abilities of wallpaper to the benefit of knowing how to put together your own gorgeous floral arrangements.  If you're into home design, don't miss this weekend!

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11 of the World's Most Unusual Apartments

MSN has put together a list of the 10 most unusual apartments in the world - from an apartment building made entirely of shipping containers, to a former state prison - check out some pretty interesting apartments.  (Oh, and I added one from my hometown of Mentor, Ohio!)

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Tiger Woods' Backyard Golf Course

Few people, even millionaires, get to enjoy a home so spectacular that there is really no comparison.  But for Tiger Woods, that time has come.  His one-of-a-kind, $50-million dollar home in Jupiter Island, Florida is finally complete.  And thanks to Cary Lichtenstein, of PGA National Homes For Sale, we get to see an aerial shot of the home's exterior and practice course. 

The backyard practice complex includes four greens and one tee box as well as two pools.  Lichtenstein offers insight into what other systems are likely to be in place in the practice area.  Check it out here.

 

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This weekend on HomesPlus: Best of the 'Burbs!

On this weekend's show:

From the North Shore to the western suburbs, we've compiled our top 5 home tours of the year!  Here's a sneak peek, but don't miss the show this weekend to revisit some of the coolest homes that were on the market this year in the suburbs.

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Style File: 5 Ways to Personalize Your Home

It's the little things that make a difference and if you're looking for a way to add a personal touch to your home (or someone else's - it IS almost the holidays after all!) here are some easy, relatively inexpensive ideas.

 

 

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This weekend on HomesPlus: Best of City Homes

This weekend, we're revisiting some of our favorite city homes of the year!  The homes range from a mere $1.5 million up to about $4 million and all are impressive!  Get inside some of the most gorgeous homes in Chicago with us this weekend!

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Local Real Estate: The Safest Bets

Whether you're in the 'burbs or the city, chances are you're concerned about the value of your home - even if you don't intend to sell anytime soon.  And yes, the truth is that home values are hovering right around where they were about eight years ago.  Which is great if you're buying...not so great if you're selling something you bought just a few years ago.  But while times could be better pretty much across the board, there are definitely some neighborhoods that are faring better than others.  These are what Chicago Magazine's Dennis Rodkin calls "safe bets."  Every year, Dennis compiles the Annual Real Estate Chart to see how current sales compare to the previous year as well as 1994, when they began tracking the numbers. 

Take a look at the video below to see if you live in one of the six suburbs and city neighborhoods that Dennis considers a "safe bet."  If you're in one of these places, chances are, your home has retained plenty of value compared to other, not-so-lucky areas.

 

 

3DTVs: Worth it?

Football season is well under way and the word on the street is that more and more games will be broadcast in 3D.  DirecTV promised 85 sporting events in 3D this year, as well as launching a dedicated 3D network and pay-per-view category, and that number is expected to increase as 3D becomes more popular.  But is it really worth it?  Though the price of the actual TV sets have been coming down, the entire package necessary for true 3D viewing can be pretty pricey - especially if you're hosting a group watch for that big game, or movie-night for the family. 

According to Dan Thurston of Grant's Appliance, 3D glasses can cost upwards of $129 each.  It's not unusual for your 3D TV to be bundled with two sets of glasses at the time of purchase, but the additional glasses can really add up if you're accustomed to guests for TV time.

Take a look at what you'll need and what you should consider if you're thinking of purchasing a 3D TV for your home.

 

 

This Weekend on HomesPlus TV (10/31)

This weekend on HomesPlus we're bringing you the show from Highland Park where we're touring a home that was originally built in 1907, renovated in 1930 and still features some amazing original details, which at 80-years old, definitely do not look their age.  Plus, we're checking out the neighborhood of Bridgeport and looking into a few ways to add some style to your home.

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Insulate to save $$ this winter

Despite a pretty gorgeous fall thus far, we all know that any day now we could wake up to a few inches of snow on the ground and all the bitter cold that comes with it.  So, if your home is drafty and you're not looking forward to another season of the chills, then it's time to get some insulation in those walls and attic.  Most people tend to put it off because it sounds like such a large project, but with these guys your home can be insulated in just a day with no trace of the work left behind.  And you can finally enjoy winter the way it was meant to be enjoyed - inside your toasty home drinking hot chocolate!

 

Style File: Fall Décor

Transforming your home's decor into the cozy spirit of Fall doesn't have to be difficult -- or expensive. Most of these ideas you can make yourself with a little help from mother nature and the dollar store. Here are some examples using three staple ingredients for autumn: pumpkins, leaves & acorns!

By: Keri Morgan

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Next Episode (10/23): HomesPlus TV

This weekend on HomesPlus...

We're bringing the show to you from "The Heritage at Millenium Park" building in Chicago.  First, we'll check out a $2.8 million dollar condo then it's all about making the most of your home and your real estate investment!  Rochelle tagged along with the guys at Midway Moving & Storage to find out if it's REALLY worth it to hire professional movers, then she lets us in on a great option to insulate your home before winter without tearing through the walls, and finally she gets the scoop on what neighborhoods are safe bets in this crazy market from Chicago Magazine's Dennis Rodkin. 

It's a full show this weekend, so don't miss it!

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Chicago's Real Haunted Houses and Neighborhoods

From the Fort Dearborn Massacre to the Eastland Disaster and beyond, Chicago has much tragedy in its past.  And from tragedy comes the ghostly tales of those who lost their lives, yet aren't quite ready to move on to whatever comes next.  October seems to be the perfect month to check out some of Chicago's REAL haunted houses and neighborhoods.  Take a look...

 

Chicago's Haunted Neighborhoods

  

A Couple of Chicago's Real Haunted Homes  

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This weekend on HomesPlus ... Naperville

Next Episode: Ever been to a home where the quickest way to get downstairs wasn't a staircase, but a fire pole?  Didn't think so.  This weekend, we're in Naperville checking out a home that's got fun features for the kids, and even more for the adults!  Then, we'll hang out in Naperville for a while to see why so many people love it.  (Two words: Down. Town.)  We've also got ideas to keep your home looking good as you go green, this week's top home accessory and a garage makeover that you won't want to miss!

 

 

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Find Hidden Space at Home

I'm not sure that I have ever met a person that complains of having too much space at home.  When it comes to our stuff, there are never enough places to put it.  The real estate market has forced a lot of people to stay in homes that they're rapidly growing out of, so getting organized has probably never been more important.  We recently got lessons from two local professional organizers about how to tackle different spaces in your home to create more space without feeling overwhelmed.

The first was an overstuffed closet (pretty common for the city) which we organized in a few hours with Molly Boren of Simplicity Works.  The second was a basement storage area that had become a catch-all over the years which we learned how to tackle with the organizers at B Organized.  Each space had its own challenges, but the principles were the same.  Take a look at the before and afters and then check out what we learned.

 

 
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This weekend on HomesPlus (10/9)

Next Episode: Fall for your home

It's time to get your home in gear to fully enjoy the fall season!  First, we're checking out an amazing home in Bucktown where the outdoor space will keep you toasty all fall (outdoor fireplace, heated pool and hot tub, anyone??).  And then (because we can't all afford a $4.9 million dollar home right now) we'll talk to a designer to find out how to update our own outdoor spaces to make them totally comfy all autumn long.  Plus, call it "Fall Cleaning" - we're showing you how to discover space you never knew you had by grabbing a few helpers and spending an afternoon getting ORGANIZED!  It's a before and after that could only have been achieved with some serious elbow grease, this weekend on HomesPlus!

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Style File: Warming up your outdoor space

If you've got a patio, yard or deck that has served you well all summer, there's no need to pack it in now - believe it or not, you've got another couple months of al fresco entertaining, dining and lounging ahead of you. Your space just needs to serve three basic functions to keep in working order through the fall - you'll need it to provide warmth, shelter from any drizzle and be cozy enough to relax and enjoy the changing leaves.

Don't miss the show this weekend, when we'll talk to a local designer about some products that will help extend the use of your outdoor space through fall - but for now, you'll have to settle for some items we think will come in very handy.

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Favorite Homes of '10

It's October 1st and that means the begining of the end...Halloween, Thanksgiving and before you know it, you're wearing a stupid hat, listening to people blow those paper horns and toasting to the new year.  Where did it all go???  Well, at HomesPlus our year was spent checking out some of the most incredible homes across Chicagoland.  And now, as the year draws to a close, we're preparing our annual "best of" episode, where we showcase our favorite homes of the city and suburbs.  This is where you come in - take another look at the tours of the year and let us know which ones are YOUR favorites!  We'll review the list and you'll get to see which homes made it when the best begins at the end of the year!

My personal favorite was this one - a gorgeous Lake Forest estate.  What's yours?!

 

 

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This Weekend on HomesPlus TV (10/2)

This weekend on HomesPlus we're in Lakeview checking out a $1.399 million dollar home just off of the Southport Corridor.  And - stop procrastinating and get organized!  We're joining a professional organizer to get a city closet in shape before winter - and we've got the steps you need to make it a piece of cake without a pro.  Plus, a look at 3D-TVs and what you'll need to pick up to go three-dimensional in your home.

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Style File: TAG!

Seasonal home decor shopping is one of the most addictive sports out there.  I should know; I have no storage space and yet, every year I come home with more Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas accessories than I can fit in my house.  There's just something about being inspired by a new season (even if it means that the frigid days of winter are getting closer...)

And now I know I'm in big trouble this coming season, because I found a gem among home decor stores.  It's the TAG Outlet, on Wrightwood in the city - and it's all the same stuff you'll find in Crate & Barrel, but for a fraction of the price.  Including, but not limited to, accessories, furniture, dishes, linens and utensils.  (And yes, it IS less expensive than the Crate & Barrel Outlet on Clybourn.)  Here are a few teaser shots to get you ready for some seasonal shopping (or just looking for a great place to shop on a budget)!  Have fun!

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Moving: Not for everyone.

I've moved before.  I've packed up my stuff, loaded it onto a friend's truck or into a rented van and unloaded it on the other end.  And after every move I say "I'll never do this again."  And then I do it again.  The reason is this: it's freakin' expensive to hire professional movers!  And until now, I've been fairly certain that the money wasn't worth it.  But as I've gotten (ahem) older, time and properly functioning muscles have become more valuable than the shoes that would inevitably account for that extra money and I've long suspected that it's probably worth it after all. 

To test the theory, I tagged along on a move with the guys from Midway Moving & Storage to see what actually goes into a move for a pro.  And that day that I spent mostly just trying to stay out of their way convinced me that they're the pros for a reason - they got a truck holding about 80% of the home's furniture and household items unpacked in under two hours and the owner didn't have to lift a finger (except to point me in the right direction once).  Nothing was broken, nothing was lost and everyone was happy (including the kids).  Money well spent in my opinion.  Take a look and see what you think!

 

 

 

Chicago Architecture: Top 40 Buildings

Chicago is a city known for its architecture (take a crash course by enjoying a 90-minute architectural cruise on the river).  That's why Chicago Magazine has compiled a list of the top 40 buildings in Chicago and we've been in quite a few of the residential beauties, touring some of the most beautiful homes on the market. 

Here are the tours - and see the full list at ChicagoMag.com.

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Inside Celeb Closets

During the month of October we'll be hitting up different rooms in the home with various local professional organizers to tackle some major fall organization!  The first will be a closet in Andersonville (watch for that one in the coming weeks), but for now it just got me thinking about what would happen if I had the opportunity to completely re-design my closet.  (Hint: walls would come down, chandeliers would go in and each and every last shoe would have its own designated home.)  Which of course, led me to this fabulous gallery on InStyle.com.  If you want full descriptions of every closet, I highly recommend that you head there to get a closer look.  But for now, here are my favorite celeb closets!

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Chicago as 8th Most Stressful City? I think not.

No matter where you live, there are things that get on your nerves over time.  Take Chicago for instance:  Traffic?  It's miserable.  Taxes?  Ridiculous.  Winter?  Excrutiating.  But still, when CLTV reported this morning that Chicago has ranked as the 8th most stressful city to live in, I found it difficult to believe.  And apart from the fact that I get to see some of the most affluent areas and comfortable lifestyles every week because of the homes we tour, a quick scroll through the pictures in my phone gives a pretty good idea why I happen to think that Chicago is a great city for RELIEVING stress, despite what Portfolio.com says.

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Top 3 Homes for a Labor Day BBQ

This weekend's show is a rerun because we figured everyone is out enjoying the last of the beautiful summer weather (like we are) and probably isn't inside waiting with baited breath for the next episode of HomesPlus to come on.  (I mean, every other weekend, of course you are, but just not this weekend.)

So in honor of a life lived outside (while the weather allows it), here are our three favorite home tours that include killer outdoor space.  Perfect for your Labor Day bbq if you close before Monday.

Happy Labor Day weekend everyone :)

 

77 Wentworth Avenue, Glencoe:

This place has everything you need for a great outdoor party - a pool, an incredible back patio complete with fireplace in case the evening gets chilly and best of all - 240 feet of private beach to enjoy.  I'll bring the sangria.

 

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