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As summer draws to a close and fall begins anew, we at Weatherables thought it would be a great idea to give everyone some fun reads to ease the transition to colder weather. In the next few weeks, we’ll be providing a series of posts revealing what we’ve found to be the best blogs on subjects relating to your home. So read on as this week, we tip our hats to the best of the best in our Top 20 Home & Garden Blogs:
1. Young House Love follows Sherry and John Petersik, two self proclaimed DIY dorks, as they renovate, add-on, and generally spruce-up their home. Everything they do is DIY, and their work is regularly featured in Do It Yourself, and R.Home Magazines. Their projects are all inclusive – from setting the posts for a new deck, to finding the right color for a wall in the house, and the stories about their little girl Clara – so much fun!
2. Garden Rant was created by four “highly opinionated gardeners”, Susan Harris, Elizabeth Licata, Michele Owens, and Amy Stewart. Garden Rant focuses on any and all topics related to gardening, plant politics, and much, much more. One of their best posts (and featured on their own Top 10 of 2010) hits the pros and cons of the garden gazing globe that ignited a great debate in the comments. Covering everything from the first vertical, urban greenhouse superstructures (Plantagons), to how to make a great ice wine cocktail, Garden Rant is always a good read.
3. Growing The Home Garden provides great insight into gardening in the middle of the US. Written by Dave Townsend, an avid gardener in Spring Hill, Tennessee, The Home Garden features his garden and the projects that he takes on, as he works to create his dream garden. A great weekly series are his Friday Fives articles – a feature of five tips and tricks that every gardener can take to heart.
4. The Nester provides a place for everyone to find decorating encouragement, creative ideas, and be reminded that “it doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful.” It’s a great site to visit to learn how to make the most of what you have, and to truly enjoy your home.
5. Bower Power provides a front row seat to the life of the Bower family. After Katie and Jeremy Bower married, they started this blog in order to catalog all of the changes in their lives as well as all of the renovations that they were making to their new home. This blog is full of great, simple ideas, and tips for improving your home. A good example is a recent post about adding drawer pulls to their kitchen cabinets – Katie gives some step-by-step instructions for how to install some tricky cup-pull handles on her drawers. Follow along as Katie, Jeremy, and their young son Will, as they continue making updates to their new home!
6. Our Humble A(Bowe)d is written by Amanda Bowe, and features all of the projects that they have running at their home. Amanda does the designs, and her husband, Ben, does the construction. Posts range from new construction projects, like the removing of a load-bearing wall, to decorating their home with new curtains that she sewed herself (complete with instructions). This blog offers great information on DIY projects always with a mind to great design.
7. Making It Lovely is another excellent home design blog. Written by Nicole Balch, Making it Lovely follows along as she turns her “so-so house into a lovely home”. She provides some great tips on everything for setting a table for four using nothing but a mystery box of supplies from Pottery Barn, to articles on making pieces that you already own and love work perfectly as your life changes.
8. Growing with Plants is written by Matt Mattus and follows his garden in central Massachusetts. Being in the middle of the Snow Belt, Matt has a glass greenhouse where many of his plants are grown, but he also maintains another outdoor garden spreading over two and a half acres. It is clear from his posts that Matt loves plants. In addition to giving greenhouse gardening tips or project ideas, Matt loves to share photos and stories from his trips, the most recent featuring the high-altitude plants of Colorado.
9. Hooked on Houses is a great blog to read about just what the title says – houses! Julia has been writing her blog since January 2008, and she loves to write about everything involving houses – celebrity homes, selling homes, television shows about homes, home design, and everything in between!
10. House of Earnest is a relatively new blog, founded by Erin Souder in early 2012, but already has a huge following. One reason for the site’s success (and why we love it), is that Erin’s articles make complicated, sometimes daunting home projects, easy! She regularly features articles on DIY projects, new home products, and inspiration for her readers. Erin is also an avid party planner and provides great advise on neat, easy ways to improve your events!
11. Cold Climate Gardening is the perfect gardening blog for those who live in the colder areas of the country. Hailing from up-state New York, Kathy Purdy is a long time gardener and writer, and has written for several national gardening magazines. Fourteen years ago, after moving to New York and surviving her first harsh East Coast winter, Kathy set out to share all of her cold-weather gardening tips. In her blog, you’ll be able to find articles on wildflowers, how to assess freeze damage on your plants, and get some great ideas for your cold-climate garden.
12. Rambling Renovators follows Jennifer, her husband, better known as "HandyMan," and their daughter Chloe. Originally, the blog was all about how they were updating their 1950’s home with new renovations that more closely fit their style. Then, following the birth of their daughter, the site took a bit of a turn, and now while still focusing heavily on their home projects, they also feature their family life. The family is currently working on a basement renovation. Read along as Jennifer and her husband make their formerly dark un-family friendly basement into a great living space.
13. My Sweet Savannah, by Melaine Thompson, is all about home décor and design. The blog features all of her gorgeous design finds, DIY projects, plus some amazing work by other designers that she’s found and appreciates. Follow along for great tips like decorating with garage sale finds, or see her many design ideas taking shape throughout her home. Melaine always posts hi-res images of all of her design ideas, making for an awesome visual experience!
14. Hounds in the Kitchen is written by Rachel Tayse Baillieul, and tells about her family’s escapades in the central Ohio area. Hounds is a gardening blog featuring many articles detailing Rachel’s tips on vegetable gardens, gardening in a small urban area, and how to enjoy homegrown foods year round. Oh and the hounds? Devie, a ten year-old blue tick coonhound, and Wissi, a four year-old dachshund make regular appearances in Rachel’s posts.
15. North Coast Gardening is another fantastic gardening blog. Based in Arcata, California, Genevieve Schmidt is a landscape designer who for the last 15 years has run her own landscape design company. Genevieve lends her professional eye in all of her posts, where she talks about all things gardening. She regularly covers topics on picking the right plants and maintaining your garden. She even provides recipes where the ingredients can come straight from your garden!
16. The House of Smiths focuses on DIY, decorating, and crafting projects that the Smith family has planned for their home. Written by Shelley and Carson Smith, House of Smiths is a great site to follow for the inspiration to tackle some of the projects you have planned for your home.
17. Thrifty Décor Chick is the perfect blog for those trying to decorate on a budget. Sara’s goal is for all of her readers to “have a home they love, even though they may not have much to spend on it.” One of our favorite posts is one just for teachers – fun, inexpensive decorating tips for your classroom! Another great DIY post is how to build your own gorgeous set of built-in bookshelves.
18. Veggie Gardening Tips is the best place to find vegetable gardening tips. Kenneth Point is a big proponent of gardening the natural way - no chemicals. In the mid-80’s Kenneth accepted an internship and moved to a 40 acre organic farm where he learned all he could about gardening, nature, and self-sufficiency. All the tips and tricks that Kenneth has learned over the last 25 years are shared with his readers, along with lots of photos of his gardens!
19. Centsational Girl is a fantastic DIY blog for renovating, decorating, and fixing up your home on a budget. Kate is an author and a self-described bargain hunter, whose main goal is to show everyone how to transform your home “with style” for less. All her posts feature easy to follow, do-it-yourself projects. New to the blog, but want to see all of the projects Kate’s done? No problem, Kate keeps an ever-expanding project gallery with all of her projects, broken down by type, so you can find inspiration and instruction on your next home improvement project!
20. Peck Life is the haven for DIYers, home improvers, and anyone with a family. Emily started Peck Life as a way to document her pregnancy and the birth of her first child, Sky. The blog has since evolved into an amazing place to learn about crafts, home improvement, and gardening projects that she and her husband Josh, take on around the house. Chock full of great photos, projects, and enthralling family stories, Peck Life is an awesome read!