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Archive for October, 2011

A-OK! Cool Girl: Gerren Taylor- A Role Model

Posted by Levine Communications Office on October 28, 2011


Gerren Taylor (pictured) was bullied as a kid because of her towering height and rail-thin body, but when she started modeling at age 12, she quickly became the toast of the fashion industry, walking runways for Betsey Johnson and Tommy Hilfiger, and starring in a Marc Jacobs ad. A year later, though, when her figure had filled out a bit, she was told she was too large to book any jobs. It was a big blow, but Taylor had her head on straight. She has since become a motivational speaker who travels the world to talk to young people about self-esteem — and we sat down with her last week:

I Heart Daily: When did you first encounter bullying?
Gerren Taylor: It was prior to modeling because of my height, slender physique and curly hair. I was called “Olive Oyl,” “stick,” “bean pole,” and anything else that the kids could think of to describe my tall thin body. I remember on the school bus one of the kids yelled out, “Whoever thinks Gerren is a giraffe raise your hand.” All the kids raised their hands. I went home crying quite a bit because of the taunting.

IHD: How did you deal with it?
GT: My mom let me know that my height is a gift from God and one day I would see why it made me special. I realize now what she was saying, and I want to tell everyone, ‘You are a special gift and don’t let anyone convince you otherwise.’ I love the quote by Eleanor Roosevelt that says, ‘No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.’ That is so true.

IHD: People think that “the beautiful people,” like you, aren’t bullied. What do you say to that?
GT: First, I truly believe that everyone is beautiful, and it is truly a person’s inner qualities that either enhance their beauty, or diminishes it. That being said, to me bullying is more than just physical abuse. Bullying can be verbal. Bullying is to be ignored like you’re invisible, and treated like you don’t exist. Bullying is to be teased and made fun of relentlessly. There are so many ways that a person can be bullied, made to feel less than, and to feel fearful. The bullies are the ones with low self-esteem.

IHD: What inspired you to focus on self-esteem issues for teens?
GT: I saw girls going to extremes to achieve beauty. It was to the point where it became dangerous with eating disorders, low self-esteem, a negative view regarding their bodies, and depression. They were chasing an idea of beauty that’s impossible to catch and impossible to achieve. This made me want to make a difference — to help people to love and appreciate themselves again.

IHD: What do you think is the best way for people to handle bullying?
GT: Let an adult know, whether it’s your teacher, principal or parents. I remember at school when I was bullied I told my teacher, and she did nothing; I told my principal, she did nothing, so finally I told my mom. She went to the school and had a meeting with the teacher, the principal, and the parents of the kids who were bullying. The problem was fixed, but I think my mom would have gone to the school board next if it wasn’t handled. It is so important to nip bullying in the bud. A lot of the school attacks have been blamed on the culprits being bullied prior to their acts. I think the administrators on the school campuses should take this problem very seriously.

IHD: Last question: What are you hearting right now?
GT: I’m hearting my Twitter. Just getting used to it and really starting to tweet now. I’m hearting TACOS…I could eat them every day! And I’m hearting this interview. Thanks!



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How To Be Happy At Work!

Posted by Levine Communications Office on October 28, 2011


How can leaders create a culture of happiness?

First, take time for yourself. We have the greatest amount of control over our own mindset. Create a positive habit that takes about two minutes a day and do that for 21 days in a row.  In trainings we have people journal about one positive experience, writing about every detail they can remember about a positive experience over the past 24 hours. Or meditate, exercise or write a kind letter to a friend. All these habits increase happiness and retrain the brain to get stuck in a positive pattern for evaluating work.

Sometimes managers get so focused on problems they miss seeing successes and finding the meaning in their work. These positive activities change that pattern and return power to the individual. Along with higher levels of happiness, the success rates on your team start to improve, which is where it starts to move from an individual to leadership.

We all work for money, but money only gets us in the room. It doesn’t mean we’re engaged once we’re there. Praise motivates us and improves productivity, but it has to be frequent and specific and based on reality. You can’t say, “I’m happy you work on this team.” It has to be, “I’m so grateful for the work you did on that project, getting it in by 9 o’clock yesterday.” That encourages specific behavior. Some leaders sugarcoat the present and then make bad decisions in the future and that causes people to mistrust positive leaders. We’re trying to create rational optimists, which means you start with a realistic assessment of the present but believe your behavior matters.

What are the characteristics of successful leaders?

Positive leaders do the opposite of what you expect in the midst of their challenges. They invest more in social support networks and spend more time thanking people and having face-to-face conversations with their employees. When I was working with Harvard students, I found many spent 18 hours a day in the library when they got stressed. They’d come out bleary eyed and depressed. Their grades were dropping and they hated Harvard.

I told them they were cutting themselves off from the greatest predictors of happiness and success. Social support is the greatest buffer against depression and predictor of success, according to research I did on 1,600 individuals. Positive leaders also recognize it’s not just intelligence that creates success. Seventy-five percent of employees’ job performance is predicted by three factors: belief that their behavior matters; their social support network at work and at home; and seeing stress as a challenge rather than a threat.

How does happiness lead to better performance?

Positive mindset is the precursor to greater levels of success. If we can raise the levels of positivity in the midst of challenges, we find productivity and engagement rises and creativity triples. Every business outcome improves when an employee feels positive. We started to see that when it wasn’t working. We assumed employees at successful companies would be happy. We thought we could work harder and then we would be successful and happier and that is how we manage, how we see and even how we think in a down economy. We found the formula was backwards. Happiness led to higher success rates, but higher success rates did not necessarily lead to happiness.

 How do you know if you’re the right kind of optimist?
If you are only seeing the good things, you’ve got a distorted view of the world. If you recognize both strengths and weaknesses of your team and yourself, you are starting in a rational place. The trouble is when a manager thinks that a person is negative or underperforms and will never change. That can create problems. We’ve found that hospitals that report the greatest number of medical errors have some of the lowest malpractice rates. It’s completely counterintuitive, but the positive leaders created the psychological thinking to bring up problems that could fixed. On teams without the psychological safety, people felt they couldn’t make mistakes or bring up negatives—and problems never got fixed and even got worse.

If you had one more hour a day, how would you use it?

I’d make it completely altruistic. It’s actually selfish. If I wrote emails or called friends, I’d feel like I’m spreading positivity and happiness. When you do kind things for other people, it creates a longer happiness effect than if you do something for yourself. Eating a chocolate bar makes us happy for five minutes. Donating money to charity keeps that cycle of feeling good going because you’re making positive change in the world.

We found that people who gave social support at work and asked friends to lunch or helped someone with their work are far and away the happiest people. They were 40 percent more likely to receive a promotion and had significantly less burnout. The more you give, the more you get in terms of meaning, happiness and success rates.


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Carine Roitfeld Styles Chanel, Leighton Meester Pursues Movies, and Taylor Jacobson Gets A Show

Posted by Levine Communications Office on October 28, 2011

For the second season in a row, Karl Lagerfeld enlisted Carine Roitfeld to style Chanel’s spring-summer campaign starring Saskia de Brauw and Joan Smalls. [WWD]

Oxygen has picked up two new fashion reality shows: one stars Rachel Zoe‘s ex-assistant Taylor Jacobson, the other follows a former ANTM winner. [Racked]

Former supermodel Gerren Taylor, who now travels the world as a motivational speaker, speaks out against bulling—and has advice on how to deal. [IHeartDaily]

When Leighton Meester‘s contract with Gossip Girl is up next year, she plans to pursue both movies and music. [Fashionista]

Justin Bieber will collaborate with Kanye West and Drake on his next album; Lil Wayne unfortunately has yet to jump on board. [NYMag]


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JJ Virgin on tips for a safe and healthy Halloween that won’t ruin your diet!

Posted by Levine Communications Office on October 20, 2011

Stick to Your Usual Eating Routine

Don’t be tempted to skip breakfast and lunch on Halloween so you can bank your calories for sweets. “The worst thing you can do is save up for Halloween by not eating,” says JJ Virgin, CNS, nutritionist and co-star of TLC’s Freaky Eaters. “If you’re hungry, you have no willpower.”

Instead eat your usual meals during the day and have a healthy dinner before the Halloween festivities begin. “I like a hearty bowl of turkey-bean chili and a giant tossed salad on the side, since the veggies are high in fiber and water to fill you up,” says Bauer. “You’ll feel stuffed with healthy calories so you won’t be as likely to go overboard with the treats.”

Be the ‘Boring’ House

If you’re the kind of person who’ll eat whatever’s around, don’t set yourself up for failure by stocking up for trick-or-treaters. Consider buying non-candy goodies from a dollar store (temporary tattoos, toys, stickers, etc.) or healthier snacks, like little baggies of nuts or raisins. Yes, you might get some rolled eyes from neighborhood kids, but at least their parents will thank you!

If you go the candy route, at least buy your sweets at the last minute so you won’t dip into it in the days before Halloween. And don’t buy your absolute favorite kind, says Virgin. “I’m not going to bring things into the house that I can’t handle.” if you’re a chocolate person, stick to gummy or tart candies that’ll be less tempting.

Have a Splurge Strategy

Okay, we know this is Halloween, a holiday dedicated to tricks and treats — emphasis on the treats. But in order to survive the holiday without derailing your diet, plan your splurges in advance. “Make it really specific — for example, you’ll have three fun-size bars or three peanut butter cups,” says Bauer. “If you have a plan, you’re more likely to stay in control.”

Read more at… http://www.everydayhealth.com/diet-and-nutrition-pictures/tips-for-a-sweet-and-healthy-halloween-that-wont-ruin-your-diet.aspx#/slide-5

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Advice from the great Bill Gates…

Posted by Levine Communications Office on October 17, 2011

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Brandon Wade speaks to E! Online about Ashton and Demi

Posted by Levine Communications Office on October 13, 2011


Why are so many people confused by Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher‘s marriage drama? Duh, this is what happens when a cougar marries a cub.
—Vake, via the inbox

Let’s just pretend that a woman like Demi Moore is a “cougar.” And, really, if marrying a dude in his 20s while being over 30 makes a woman a cougar, females can’t win anymore. I fold.

Anyway, I threw your question past someone with an actual degree in relationship counseling, plus a guy who has some very interesting data, and, it turns out, you’re not entirely wrong:

IN OTHER ASHTON NEWS: Ooh! Coded messages!

You’re just somewhat wrong.

First we’ll start with the veteran relationship expert who is also a go-to voice on talk shows whenever the topic is love-related: Dr. Gilda Carle. She tells me that whatever is going on between the Mr. and Mrs. Kutcher, it has nothing to do with age. She cites Antonio Banderas and Melanie Griffith (who are, as far as we know, doing just fine) and Hugh Jackman, who is still married to a woman roughly 10 years his senior.

“Age is not the issue,” she insists. “It’s the psychology behind who these people are. It’s their EQ, emotional quotient.”

In other words, if Ashton’s cheating rumors are true, then somebody in that marriage lacks the maturity to keep it in his pants. Or her pants. Or their pants. The point is: Pants.

MORE: The alleged other woman talks!

“Just because you’re a certain age doesn’t make you mature,” Carle says. “You may look older than your mate but be less mature; when you have an issue, do you run to other people, or do you say, ‘We have an issue, let’s repair it’?”

Good point. After all, Tiger Woods‘ wife wasn’t exactly old or haggard, was she?

All that said, age may be coming into play in this marriage more subtly and indirectly. I bring you Brandon Wade, creator of a Web site called WhatsYourPrice.com. The site places the value of a first date in dollars and cents. First dates are, apparently, bought and sold.

Wade’s site recently published a study examining the perceived values of first dates based on age. According to the study, the perceived value of “attractive females” peak at “approximately $166, when she reaches the age of 25.

MORE: Demi’s topless Tweet

“By the time she becomes a cougar, which is generally defined as an attractive woman over the age of 30, her value is on the decline, losing as much as $4.25 each year she ages. The study also finds that the value of an attractive male peaks when he reaches the age of 34.”

Why does this matter? Because, at age 33, Kutcher happens to be approaching that peak value Wade is describing. And if that’s the case, he says, “he is facing tremendous pressure to stray” among the young ladies.

See my earlier reference about pants.

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Leslie Seppinni Speaks to Everyday Health about Amanda Knox

Posted by Levine Communications Office on October 12, 2011

Dealing with the Aftermath of the Amanda Knox Trial: Can She Bounce Back?

A look at why we became a nation fascinated with the trial of the 24-year-old American exchange student. Plus now that she’s free, what kind of life awaits Amanda Knox?

TUESDAY, Oct. 4 — After four years of trials, appeals, and jail time, American student Amanda Knox is finally free. As she collapsed into tears and sobs after the judge overturned her murder conviction, it’s clear that the 24-year-old student has a long road of recovery ahead of her.

Knox, 24, has always been adamant about her innocence in the murder of her former study abroad roommate, Meredith Kercher. Earlier on Monday, Knox, visibly shaking and barely able to stand, made a final plea before the court. “I did not kill. I did not rape. I did not steal. I was not there,” she said. In 2009, Knox and her co-defendant Raffaele Sollecito were convicted for the 2007 murder of Kercher, Knox’s roommate in Perugia, Italy. Knox was sentenced to 26 years in prison; Sollecito was sentenced to 25 years.

However, on Monday, the Italian judge declared the pair not guilty of murder. “We’re thankful that Amanda’s nightmare is over. She suffered for four years for a crime she did not commit,” Knox’s sister, Deanna Knox, said at the courthouse following the verdict.

Why We Care So Deeply About the Knox Trial Outcome

In the wake of the verdict, many took to Twitter and the Web to comment on the case and share in the family’s joy. The public’s infatuation with the high-profile case is reminiscent of that other young brunette on trial for murder earlier this summer (Read: Casey Anthony); however the reactions are completely different.

Whereas Anthony’s acquittal elicited harsh responses from those following the case (one follower Tweeted, “This is a sick and disappointing ending to the Casey Anthony trial.”), the majority of the Knox trial reactions describe a sense of justice winning out. Everyday Health Facebook fan Frances Sanchez said, “Amanda always stuck to her innocence…I think justice prevailed.”

Everyday Health Twitter follower @Beachlady58 said, “I am praying sooo very hard for her freedom. I feel she has been done so wrong by the Italian government.” Another follower, @yella_xo, says, “I think Amanda Knox deserves to be free! I’m happy her conviction was overturned and hope her life can resume to normal.”

Given the high-profile nature of the Knox case plus the mere drama of it all (it has inspired a Lifetime movie and numerous books), it’s no surprise that whether you followed the case from the beginning or not, you have an emotional reaction to the verdict.

“This is a young woman thousands of miles away from home, and she’s being accused of something that they didn’t have enough evidence for,” explains Leslie Seppinni, PsyD, a clinical psychologist in Los Angeles and regular contributor to Nancy Grace on CNN. “She’s a very clean-looking girl. She doesn’t look like a drug or alcohol addict, and because she looks like that people take more interest in whether or not could she have done it.”

Can Knox Ever Resume a Normal Life?

While Knox and her faithful supporters are clearly breathing sighs of relief and screams of joy, the overturned sentence is a bittersweet one. Knox has finally been freed, but she has spent four years of her young adulthood trying to clear her name. And years in prison can take a significant toll on her emotional and physical health.

“Probably at first she’s going to be relieved to come home and to sleep in her own bed. And it’s going to take a minute to realize that this wasn’t a dream,” says Seppinni.

Once reality does set in, the key to a smooth transition and dealing with the reality will be support. “She’s going to need a lot of community support, and hopefully she still has her friendships in place,” says Seppinni. “She’s going to need family support. She’ll also need counseling and maybe even family counseling so that they can be informed of what her experience was like.”

“It will take time to get back to normal,” Ann Rosen Spector, PhD, a professor of psychology at Rutgers University, told ABC News. “She still has had a horrific experience and her sense of trust in police and people is gone. Some people may believe she did it and will treat her differently.”

Even though the American public largely supports Knox, the aftermath of the experience will still be traumatic for her. “She is going to be just as wrecked as Casey Anthony — the trial and the lurid details — the accused sex play and throat slashing and a drug-filled orgy,” Judy Kuriansky, PhD, an adjunct professor of clinical psychology at Columbia University’s Teachers College, told ABC News. “This will continue to follow her forever.”

She’s also still likely coping with the death of her roommate. “As a young person to have someone die in such a horrendous way, she can finally have the opportunity to grieve for that loss,” Seppinni explains.

However Knox chooses to cope with the events of the last four years, the future is up to her. Seppinni summarizes that Knox is at a sort of crossroads with her life right now: Either she can consider herself a victim for the rest of her life, or she can choose to lead a life where she is fulfilled by her passions and dreams.

“I believe you make that choice,” Seppinni says. “So she has some choices to make.”

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Michael McIntyre teaches Monster.com readers how to get the salary they want

Posted by Levine Communications Office on October 12, 2011


Tips on Getting the Salary You Want

Just because the economy seems a bit precarious doesn’t mean that you have to settle for a lower salary than you deserve. But if you’re feeling less than confident about speaking to your boss about a raise, sales expert Michael McIntyre has some tips for you. The president and CEO of Benefits America, as well as the author of “The Authentic Salesman: Mastering the Art of Transforming Real Objections into Real Transactions,” McIntyre offers these ten tips for people entering into salary negotiations with a manager:

1. Do a reality check. Take a coworker or two out for coffee or lunch and ask them for blunt feedback about how you come across at work. Consider this your pre-performance review.

2. Read the tea leaves. If your company is laying people off, try back later. It’s just common sense.

(Learn to understand the signs — read “How to Tell If a Layoff Is Coming.”)

3. Brag mercilessly. Make a list of everything you have done to help your company achieve its goals. And be specific.

4. Practice that pitch. Rehearse with your spouse or friends first, and make sure they’re tough on you so that you’re battled-tested and prepared for your boss’s curve balls.

5. Cut the sly act. Be upfront with your boss about why you want to sit down. No boss wants to be ambushed. Also be specific about how much of a raise you request –- it shows leadership and confidence.

(Is now the right time to schedule that meeting? Read “Can I Ask for a Raise Yet?”)

6. Acknowledge your boss and company. Be gracious, saying something along the lines of, “Mr. Jones, thank you for taking the time. I truly appreciate the opportunity.”

7. Zip it! After you acknowledge them, if you have done it correctly, they know why you’re there. Let them be in control (bosses like that) and ask the obvious or make a statement.

8. Acknowledge them, no matter what. They might say, “Well, I reviewed your file and as you know, the company is on a tight budget and I just don’t see how you getting a raise is going to fit in this.” Reply, “I understand and felt this might be a possibility when I came in; however, I want to share with you a few ideas about this. Have you considered the value …”.

(Get more negotiation tips — read “Ask for the Raise You Want.”)

9. Do not ramble! Once you make your rebuttal (if needed), let it go. Bosses hate rambling, so make your point concisely and watch for the ball now in their court.

10. Never, ever get emotional. No matter what, chances are that you will get a raise if you have made yourself invaluable. Leave your sensitivity at the door if you want to move up the corporate ladder.

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Dick Zimmerman – Artist to the Stars

Posted by Levine Communications Office on October 12, 2011


From the time he was seven years old Dick Zimmerman knew what he wanted to do…paint; but he didn’t want to paint just anything, Dick wanted to pain portraits. So Dick worked and studied on his craft earning a Bachelor’s degree from New Yor University and a Master’s degree at the Brooklyn Museum.

But at least for a time Dick’s path took a bit ofa turn; still working with people, he began a career as a photographer. Dick photographed fashion models, celebritites, and album covers. One such album cover belongs to one of the most popular and top selling albums in history – “Thriller” by Michael Jackson. But for Dick the story does not end there. In preparation for the photo shoot Dick had a collection of various costumes and outfits for Michael to choose from; however, Michael was not totally satisfied with the choices…until he saw the suit Dick was wearing. Since Michael and Dick were of similar size Dick loaned his suit to Michael and the white suited Jackson became the cover for the “Thriller” album. When he saw all of the photos that Dick had taken, Michael could not decide which one to use so he enlisted the help of Quincy Jones who pointed to the photo that would adorn the album cover in a matter of seconds. That photo shoot was the beginning of a 12 year relationship between Michael and Dick. A short time after the album’s release, Michael weaved his way through a restaurant to thank Dick for the album cover. When Michael married Lisa Marie Presley it was Dick who shot the photos and when Steven Spielberg hired Michael for his ET project, Michael insisted Dick also be hired for the photo work.

Tom Selleck has appeared in a number of films and television shows, one of the most famous being “Magnum PI”. Dick was hired to create what would become a post of Selleck; the poster was shot at Selleck’s Hawaii home and became one of the top selling posters.

Dick was chosen to shoot the portraits for Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman’s wedding which was a Christmas wedding in Telluride, Colorado. While decorating the tree they noticed Cruise was missing. He was discovered outside in subzero temperatures wearing a flannel shirt and no coat shoveling snow to free the car of a trapped woman. While the wedding and shoot went off flawlessly, the return home did not. The plane carrying Cruise, Dick, Dick’s assistant, and four other passengers filled with smoke and the pilots were declaring an emergency radioing a Mayday. The plane landed safely on a deserted airstrip. It was discovered the problem was pilot error when they failed to release engine pressure upon landing the plane.

In 1991, Dick returned to his first love of portrait painting. Over his career Dick Zimmerman has created over 600 commissions for some of the best known celebrities in the world that include the fiftieth wedding anniversary portraits for Salvador Dali and his wife Gala.

Dick’s client list reads like a Who’s Who and include Kristy Alley, June Allison, Pamela Anderson, Christina Aguilera, Burt Bacharach, Scott Baio, Linda Blair, Josh Brolin, Mel Brooks, George Carlin, Stockard Channing, Joan Collins, Chick Corea, Billy Dee Williams, Patti Duke Aston, Morgan Fairchild, Farrah Fawcett, Eddie Fisher, Jane Fonda, Lou Gossett Jr., Wayne Gretsky, Dorothy Hamil, David Hasselhoff, Charlton Heston, Billy Idol, Janet and LaToya Jackson, Sebastian Janikowski, Don Johnson, Sir Tom Jones, Lorenzo Lamas, Diane Lane, Tommy LaSorda, Huey Lewis, Heather Locklear, Barbara Mandrell, Donna Mills, Dudley Moore, Paul Newman, Tony Orlando, Dolly Parton, Victoria Principal, Christopher Reeve, John Ritter, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jane Seymour, William Shatner, Jaclyn Smith, Aaron and Tori Spelling, Donna Summer, Randy Travis, John Travolta and Kelly Preston, Tanya Tucker, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Mary Tyler Moore, Blair Underwood, Robert Wagner, Barbara Walters, Robin Williams, Edgar Winter, and Pia Zadora to name a few.

Currently Dick is working on a series of 10 portraits of Marilyn Monroe. To date two of the portraits have been completed and each contains $40,000 in jewels. Dick has studios in Los Angeles and Tampa.

With hard word, determination, and education Dick Zimmerman has parlayed a chilhood dream into a life long passion fit for any Hollywood movie.

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Blanche Garcia’s Decorating Tips for Fall

Posted by Levine Communications Office on October 12, 2011


We chatted with HGTV star and interior design guru Blanche Garcia to get her take on how to transition our decor to reflect the warmth of the fall season.

Now that the days are getting shorter and the nights chillier, what can homeowners do to transition their decor to reflect the change of season?

Blanche: It is easy to change the mood of a home to one that’s more in keeping with the fall season. Here are a few inexpensive, easy-to-execute ideas that will have a big impact:

  • Switch out your bedspread for a poufy down comforter, and change your sheets to ones with a heavier weight/higher thread count.


  • Protect your outdoor furniture with fitted covers. Several online retailers sell great covers that fit all sizes of outdoor furniture.


  • Change out your pillows, throws, smaller rugs, and even your bath towels to ones with warmer colors, such as aubergine and burnt orange.


  • Create a mudroom area. Most of us don’t have the luxury of a dedicated mudroom, but you can create one by dedicating a space right next to the front door for boots and coats. The last thing you want in fall and winter is to track damp and debris throughout the house. It’s messy, not to mention unsanitary. This is one instance where it is worthwhile making an investment in a piece of furniture such as a wooden coat rack, a bench, or an antique storage chest that can act as an instant mudroom.


  • Bring the outdoors inside with branches, seasonal produce such as apples and gourds, and beautiful fall flowers. Go for simple arrangements, such as a wooden bowl filled with apples as a table centerpiece or a vase filled with interesting branches on the mantelpiece. A concentrated arrangement in one place makes more of a visual impact than several smaller, scattered arrangements. Think 20 oranges in a bowl, versus one on a mantelpiece.

Any words of caution for homeowners eager to decorate for fall?

Blanche: Be careful not to get too “stagy.” Shy away from draping fake garlands of leaves above the window frames. It comes off as inauthentic. When you think of your grandmother’s house in fall, what likely comes to mind are the brilliant colors of the trees and the smell of cinnamon and baked apples and pine cones.

Each season offers an abundance of natural products just waiting to be used. Pull out the crystal bowl you received as a wedding gift and load it up with pinecones. Fill the vitrine with gourds and pottery in colors of the season. It’s almost unlimited what you can do with what you already have and with what’s right outside your front door.


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