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How to get a head start on the holidays


They aren't mentioning the C-word this early (that's Christmas), but Oct. 29 the Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers is holding a floral design show, "Natural Trimmings, Holiday Style," with advice on creating designs for the table, tree, mantel and entryway.

The event will be held from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the Omni Inner Harbor Hotel; admission is $12.

Call (410) 538-8192 for more information.

Allergy defense

The inside of your house can be as awful as a field full of ragweed if you suffer from winter allergies.

Here are some things you can do:

* Brighten rooms with mildew-resistant paint.

* Don't bring in plants. They can boost humidity and harbor mold.

* Remove carpets, a refuge for dust mites, mold and mildew. Use area rugs or enjoy the beauty of wood floors.

* Get rid of knickknacks that collect dust.

* Keep the temperature as cool as you can comfortably. Use a dehumidifier.

Call (800) 828-4783 for a free list of other allergy management tips from the American Lung Association and the makers of Tavist-D.

Mud and Metal

The name is as functional as the ceramics and metalwork sold there, but Mud and Metal in Hampden has some beautiful works by local artists as well.

The new shop at 813 W. 36th St. features crafts, garden-related items, kitchenware, and bits and pieces of furniture.

Look for more events like the mask competition going on now in honor of Halloween, says owner Carol Randrup.

Hours are Tuesday and Wednesday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; Thursday through Saturday, 11 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sunday, noon-5 p.m.

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