Saturday, August 2, 2003

In the know

What's going on around the home

Shop talk

Outlet store: Next Dimension Studios, a business-to-business marketer of wall art, mirrors and home decor to catalogs and retailers, has partnered with Donna Salyers' Fabulous-Furs to open an outlet store at 25 W. Robbins St., Covington. Lamps, pillows, screens, tables, vases and decorative ornaments fill most of the 6,000-square-foot warehouse store along with discontinued Fabulous-Furs coats, jackets, shoes and clothes. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Friday and 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday. Information: (859) 426-9911, Ext. 36.

Ethan Allen for kids: Ethan Allen has gone a step beyond furniture sales with its new kids' lines, offering coordinating comforters, matching sheets, accent pieces, upholstery and window treatments. The children's lines include Contempo Kids, high-tech styling with clean lines and pale, natural finish; Classic Kids, back-to-basics interchangeable pieces in maple, birch and select hardwoods and veneers in toffee, vanilla and chocolate finishes; and Ethan Allen Baby with a sleigh crib, spindle crib, rocker and multifunctional changing table. Ethan Allen Web site

Joe Ruggiero furniture line: HGTV producer and Homes Across America host Joe Ruggiero is adding outdoor furniture to his lines of case goods and upholstery, now sold through Norwalk Furniture stores. The new line will be made and marketed by Terra Furniture of City of Industry, Calif. A spring debut is planned.

We tried it

Wipeout: Disposable wipes soaked in cleaning products have become the key to quick-clean convenience. Now, Palmolive has boxed 20 dishwasher-soap wipes in a plastic tub, each 61/2-by-73/4-inch cloth capable of tackling one load of dishes and a counter wipe-up afterward. I took them home for a test wash and found them disappointing as cleaning tools, with a burst of suds that quickly disappears and no scrubbing muscle. Worst of all, there's no evidence of being biodegradable or environmentally friendly. Are we really too lazy to squirt cleaner on a fresh rag or sponge? I can see these wipes being used on camping trips, but not for everyday dishwashing. $3.49 for 20 sheets. At stores this month.

Wise buys

Close the door! Screen doors keep the bugs out only if they're closed. And that's not the top priority for kids. Improvements catalog has the answer - a "block and tackle" mechanism that closes the door automatically. The hollow aluminum bar with tension cable attaches to the screen door top rail and frame and has adjustable tension. $24.99 at Web site or (800) 642-2112.

Dutch Boy treat: Dutch Boy has expanded its wonderful Twist & Pour all-plastic paint containers with twist-off lids and side handle to quart-sizes of its paints. These square-bottomed containers won't dent or rust, and they stack neatly on shelves. They'll be available in 900 colors in the Dirt Fighter line in September at Wal-Mart.

Contact Joy Kraft by phone: 768-8467; fax: 768-8330; e-mail:

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