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Farmer’s Markets: Best Picks for August

tumblr_nsm6p4NmUo1tg33wpo1_500One of the very best things about summer is all the fresh, delicious fruits and vegetables. My personal favorites are peaches, sweet corn, tomatoes and all of the crispy greens like Swiss chard. A visit to your local farmers market may be in order! To find a farmer’s market in your area, please click the link below:

Find a Farmer’s Market Nearby

Here’s a list of the best produce to look for in August:

Seasonal Veggies Harvested in August: 

Artichokes, Asparagus, Beets, Bell Peppers, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Chile Peppers, Corn, Cucumbers, Lettuce, Mushrooms, Onions, Potatoes, Snap Beans, Spinach, Squash, Tomatoes, Zucchini

Seasonal Fruits Harvested in August:                            

Apples, Avocados, Blueberries, Cantaloupe, Fig, Grapes, Honeydew, Lemons, Nectarines, Oranges, Peaches, Pears, Plums, Raspberries, Strawberries, Watermelons

Happy shopping!

 

How Much String Do I Need: Vertical Blinds & Traverse Rods

verticalstrign

Determining the thickness of the string you need is critical, but it is also important to figure out how many feet of string you’ll need to restring your vertical blind or traverse rod.

When restringing vertical blinds and traverse rods, the formula used to estimate the length of string you will need is:

2 x Width + Height = Total Amount Needed

The string is one long piece. Both ends tie off inside the head rail of the track.

This video shows how to restring a standard vertical blind. Your blind may look different or stack differently.

Click here to purchase new string!

How Much String Do I Need? RV Edition

daynightshadeDetermining the thickness of the string you need for a blind repair is critical, but it is also helpful to determine how much string you need length-wise.

When repairing RV Day/Night shades, the formula for estimating the length of string you will need is:

2.5 x Width + Height = String length needed

(String length needed) x (number of strings in the shade) = Total amount of string needed

It’s fine to measure the window opening and not the shade. The shade won’t be larger than your window. Do not measure your old string, and cut the new strings the same length. The lengths never quite turn out right.

Click here to purchase new string!

The video below explains how to measure for the correct length and also shows how to restring the shade:

How to Fix a Stripped Screw Hole in Wood

fastener-sc-02It’s frustrating when you’re trying to reattach something, but the screw hole in the wood is stripped. I had a customer ask me about how to repair this problem, aside from using a larger screw. Below are a few resources that show you exactly how to do this repair. Best of all, the items you need (glue and toothpicks) are items most of us have on hand. I’ve found it is better to pack the hole with wood rather than use wood fillers sold at home improvement stores.

How To Fix A Stripped Screw Hole

DIY Q & A about wooden screw hole repair

Involving Kids in DIY Projects

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                        Me and my son

The other day, I caught my 9-year-old son watching an HGTV program about a couple looking to purchase a mountain home. My son watched the whole episode and had an opinion about which property the couple should purchase. HGTV is probably my favorite TV channel. It provides me with so many ideas for my own home and for my job at Fix My Blinds. We’re big into DIY here, and I am glad my son shows interest in projects.

 

Over the years, my boy has helped me paint rooms, remove wallpaper, repair leaks, change faucets, plant gardens, refinish/repair furniture and make paper crafts. He is always one who wants to see what I am doing and take part. In fact, when it came time to remove the training wheels from his bicycle, he was the one who got the wrench and took them off with little help from me. He embraces the DIY spirit with gusto!

It can be frustrating, at times, to include our kids and grandkids in our projects. They are much slower than we are and aren’t always as neat and tidy as we’d like. But think of all the benefits and lessons we are sharing! Here are a few of my favorite “consequences” of inviting the kids to help:

  1. We can teach our children how things work. Understanding the basic principles of machines, tools, and physics are great!
  2. It teaches our children how to plan projects, research and see something to completion.
  3. I don’t know about you, but I feel a great deal of personal pride when I complete a project and get to show it off. Allowing our children to feel this will foster strong confidence in their abilities and ideas.
  4. It helps us grow in our patience. As the saying goes, you only really know how to do something well once you can teach another to do it. It stretches us as adults to really hone our skills and crafts.
  5. At the end of the day, life is about relationships. Working on projects together is a great way to build strong relationships with our kiddos. These memories will last a lifetime.

Go work on a project this weekend! Invite your son, daughter, grandchild, niece, nephew, or neighbor kid along. You’ll both be better for it!

 

Which Wand Do I Need?

whichwand

You’re missing a wand from a blind in your home. Maybe it broke or wasn’t there when you moved in. How do you figure out which wand you need when there isn’t one left to match? Follow these easy steps to find out!

  1. What type of blind do you have? Vertical blinds and draperies will use fiberglass or metal wands. Horizontal blinds (wood, faux wood, mini and Venetian blinds) will use plastic or wooden wands.
  2. How does the wand attach to the blinds? If there is an open hook, just about any wand will fit, but if it is a closed circle attachment, make sure the tip of the new wand has a hook or compatible attachment.
  3. How long does the wand need to be? Make sure everyone who will be operating this blind can reach the wand. You may like a longer wand if the blind is located behind a larger piece of furniture.
  4. Which color is best? Usually wands match the blinds themselves. Or, clear is always a good option!

Please visit Fix My Blinds to browse and purchase any wands that you may need! 

Valance Clip for Levolor Verticals

We are happy to share this news with you! We have the pictured valance clip back in stock!

These clear, plastic clips fit some of the DesignLine vertical blinds made by Levolor. They may also fit some older style LouverDrape vertical blinds.VALANCE-CLIP-067
These valance clips are unique in that they slide into a track on the top of the rail of the vertical blinds. You have to put all of the valance clips in BEFORE mounting the vertical blind head rail. Then they are ready to hang your beautiful dust cover valance.

You can purchase these clips here: Buy Clips

 

Step-By-Step: Planning a DIY Project

todolist

If you’re anything like me, you probably have a list of projects you’d like to do around your house and yard. It probably has both big and small projects on it. Some, you plan to do yourself, and some you may need to hire out. Whatever your next repair project is, the steps below may be helpful to read before you begin.

 

Step 1: Gather Information

Even if you’ve been dreaming and planning this project for years, it is important to sit down and really consider what you are going to repair/update and why. What is the purpose? What is the end goal? What problem needs to be fixed?

Step 2: Get Advice and Do Research

Talking to people with more experience than we have is key. There’s a wealth of information out there if we are humble enough to admit we don’t know everything. Ask those you know and search the Internet for repair resources. Sometimes, talking to a sales associate a home repair store can help, too.

Step 3: Find Out How Much It Will Cost

calculateIt is important to determine the cost both in terms of monetary cost, and the time it will take to complete the project. Do you need to do this project in stages to save money? How much help will you need from others?

Step 4 : Buy the Parts and Do the Project

Gather all of the supplies you need: parts, tools, instructions and clean up materials. Having everything out and ready to go saves time. Now, complete the project you’ve been planning!

Step 5: Review How the Project Turned Out

What went right? What went wrong? What can you improve for the next project? Be sure to spend time relaxing and enjoying the fruits of your labor! You did it!

Hard to Find Mounting Brackets for Older Cellular Shades

Landing_Cellular_SymphonyYou know that your pleated or cellular shades are older, but you still love them. Plus, the fabric is in great condition and matches your decor. Maybe you even have lots of the same shades providing seamless coordination throughout your home. There’s no need to replace them; you have no desire to replace them. But when you took them down to paint or have new windows installed, the brackets broke. You’ve been to the big box stores and small hardware shops in your town, but no one has the mounting hardware. Are you doomed?

We have the answer! At Fix My Blinds, we carry many different hard to find mounting brackets for various ages and brands of cellular and pleated shades. Below are some of our most popular brackets. The graphics show the older style bracket and the newer replacement bracket that we sell. Check out our entire selection here: Brackets. It is very important to verify that your bracket matches what we label as the Old/Obsolete bracket before purchase.

 

Delmar Pleated Shades

New=Old-Delmar

Louverdrape Cellular and Pleated Shades

New=Old-LDCP

Comfortex Symphony Cellular Shades

New = Old Symphony

Kirsch Cellular and Pleated Shades

New=Old-Kirsch

Graber Crystal Pleat & Bali Diamond Cellular Shades

New=Old-GCP

Verosol Cellular Shades

New=Old-Verosol

 

Wooden Pallet Upcycling: Where Do I Begin?

A big thing these days is upcycling and repurposing wooden pallets. What was old and used can become new and lively again! But before you can create any of the amazing ideas out there, you’ve got to find the pallets. How do you do that?

Wood PalletsA good place to find pallets is a small business. Larger businesses are less likely to give away or sell pallets. Small businesses may be willing to give them away and could be a good place to build a lasting relationship. Exchange email addresses, and stay in touch. I know that here at Fix My Blinds, we often have to break the pallets down ourselves. If someone asked for them, we’d be happy to save them if someone came to pick them up. Some of the best businesses to find clean pallets are small garden & hardware stores, motorcycle shops, and lawnmower & power equipment stores. Beware of companies that get deliveries with chemicals or liquids. You may want to think twice before reusing that wood.

If all else fails, turn to the internet! Put it out on social media that you’re looking for pallets, and look at Craigslist ads for people getting rid of pallets. The internet is a powerful place.

Now that you’ve found and carried home a pallet or two, what’s next? How do you take this thing apart so you can build the table/wall hanging/planter/bar/etc that you’ve got your eye on? The blog Lemon Thistle has a great video and tutorial for that. Check it out.

How to Disassemble a Wooden Pallet
There’s even a website with hundreds of ideas and tutorials for building all sorts of things with pallets. Visit it at www.1001pallets.com.

coffeetable

Go to our Pinterest board for even more ideas. Get inspired, and build something unique!

 

 

 

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