Now’s the perfect time to get your garden beds going. Tackling one bed at a time, here’s my routine: Clean out debris and cut back dried stems. Lightly spread compost (our homemade “Black Gold”) and work it into the soil with a hoe. Sprinkle a cup or 2 of Holly Tone around the base of…

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As a designer, Connecticut Country House is both home sweet home and my design lab. It serves as my canvas, a place to experiment and to try out new ideas. It’s ever changing, always evolving and never static. But, for most of my adult life, I’ve always decorated my homes with rich, earthy color palettes,…

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Pulling out all the stops, and using cheerful colors and patterns is a wonderful way to set a joyful Easter table. When I do, I like to keep the flowers simple, so that they don’t visually compete. A few bunches of white tulips fit the bill beautifully. Arranged in a variety of vintage pitchers and…

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When I think of a springtime dessert, I think of something light, fresh, and homemade. This Angel Food Cake is just that. Simply filled and frosted with freshly whipped cream, and topped with a crown of sliced, ripe red strawberry jewels, this is one sweet little show-off of a dessert! Enjoy! Love, Nora Traditional Angel…

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The saying goes, give what you like, so this gardening gal gives flowers. Bright, cheerful, velvety pansy blossoms, arranged and given by the basketful. Perfect for gift giving, and so easy! You’ll need: Small plastic-lined baskets A flat of pansy plants Fresh moss A spool or two of grosgrain ribbon Method: Place a pack of…

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One of the first trees to break bud in winter, usually in February around here, pussy willows are iconic harbingers of spring. At the market, buckets of branches appear and beg to be taken home. Soft, fluffy, silky catkins, march like silvery bunnies along twiggy branches. I just love the contrast in textures. One of…

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Contrary to the fact that I woke up to a fresh blanket of fluffy white stuff this morning, as far as I’m concerned, spring kicked off yesterday and I’m ready to welcome her with open arms. I launched the season with what I refer to as Gardening Campaign 2016. This organized series of baby steps…

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My Irish farmhouse table is hardworking and humble. Its simple lines, unpretentious waxed wood finish, and mellowed with age hue, are the perfect combination of form and color. Any odd chair pulled up to this classic, regardless of pedigree, looks right at home. This wonderful old friend was once the star of the Dining Room,…

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I adore John Derian paperweights. They’re colorful, graphic, captivating, and always so difficult to choose a favorite! From his amassed collection of antique and vintage prints, images are reproduced, then skillfully cut and collaged onto hand-blown glass paperweights by a small staff of artisans in John’s New York studio. The imagery runs the gamut, from…

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Legend has it that St. Patrick planted an apple tree in Armagh County – also known today as “Orchard County” – an area recognized for its apple blossom tours and festivals. This cake, made from simple ingredients, is uncomplicated, easy to make, and so honest in its appearance and deliciously satisfying in flavor. Irish Apple…

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This just in . . . . Connecticut Country House has been awarded the 2016 Design Bloggers Conference Hall of Fame Award for Best Overall Blog! The competition was close; there were so many wonderful, talented people that participated in this year’s event. I’m thrilled, humbled and honored to have the blog recognized in such…

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I’m counting the days until spring, when I can throw the windows wide open and let all the glorious fresh air inside. I’m definitely a fresh air kind of woman, but when the New England weather doesn’t cooperate I do the next best thing – I light wonderfully fresh scented candles from The Sydney Hale…

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This weekend, when you’re out and about at the supermarket, don’t just do a drive-by of the floral department. Stop. There’s a lot of affordable pretty to be found! Pick up a pair of cyclamen of the same size and color. When you get home, re-pot them into matching aged clay containers. Place in a…

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My kitchen is our hub. We’re either knee deep in it, or passing through. It needs to work hard and look good. What are the parts that make it so? 1. A good work surface. My center island is a whopping 8’ x 4’ old wood surface, that’s perfect for spreading out and accommodating any…

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