It's been a bitterly cold winter. Chances are your heating system has been working overtime. And like many of us, you probably still have that one room that never quite gets toasty.
You've tried space heaters, but they're best suited for small spaces. For large, cold rooms, there's the new Vornado whole room heater.
Portable and compact (about 12 inches by 12 inches), the DVH (shown at right, $100), a digital vortex heater with automatic adjustable heat output, and the VH2 (above, $80), a vortex heater with thermostat, continuously circulate warm air in the room.
The DVH model has an easy-to-use control panel with temperature tracking display. The user simply sets it to a desired temperature, and it will reach and maintain that temperature. The VH2 model features a simple control panel as well, but with a thermostat for the user to control. Both units are plugged into a wall outlet.
The heaters are sold at Bed Bath & Beyond, True Value and Costco. Call 800-234-0604 or visit www.vornado.com.
Duct tape -- so stylish
Perhaps the gold was too glitzy. Or the steel blue too steely. Whatever the reason, the newest color in duct tape is maroon. Henkel Consumer Adhesives, marketer of Duck brand duct tape, conducted a poll to determine the newest shade of its handy tape, and thousands voted maroon in.
So now, you can stylishly patch your car's interior, fashionably hold up a broken fender or side mirror on your maroon car (temporarily, that is), add a colorful sealant to a leaky hose, attractively repair worn luggage or a tear in a poncho or umbrella. And, of course, you can decoratively seal your basement in the event of a chemical attack.
Find maroon Duck tape (a six-pack is $23.94), as well as 18 other colors at www.ducktapeclub.com and Ace Hardware and Wal-Mart stores. Or call 800-321-1733.
Beautify on a budget
The TV show has inspired you. You'd like to "Design on a Dime." (OK, not really a dime. The HGTV show offers a $1,000 budget.) But if you'd like to frugally explore your design options, the new book HGTV Design on a Dime (Meredith Books, 2004, $19.95) can help. The book showcases 21 cheap room makeovers and dozens of projects featured on the show (window treatments, paint finishes, light fixtures), offers decorating tricks, expert advice and your own room-arranging kit with grid paper.
More decorating tips, you say? The book HGTV Before & After Decorating (Meredith Books, 2003, $19.95) is also available. It features 32 before-and-after rooms, ideas for revitalizing your own digs, do-it-yourself projects and more. So, get busy. Find the books at Amazon.com.
* See mixed-media assemblages and original illustrations by Baltimore artist Kevin O'Malley on display Tuesday through April 3 at Paper-Rock-Scissors Gallery, 1111 W. 36th St. Reception and book-signing 5:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m. Thursday. Pictured above is "Colliding With Chris," an ink and colored-pencil book illustration. Call 410-235-4420.
* Every pottery item at the Potters Guild of Baltimore's gallery will be sold at half the marked price, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and noon-5 p.m. Feb. 22. The guild is located at 3600 Clipper Mill Road, Suite 101. Call 410-235-4884.
Home Front welcomes interesting home and garden news. Please send suggestions to Liz Atwood, Home Front, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, MD 21278, or fax to 410-783-2519. Information must be received at least four weeks in advance to be considered.