Tips & trends
Located at 941 N. High St., Old World New Home carries everything from furniture to jewelry.
Old World New Home
Mixing old and new comes naturally for the mother-daughter team of Carlene and Betsy Crist who opened Old World New Home at 941 N. High St. in the Short North a year ago.
With an eye for bringing vintage pieces back to life, the store has quickly gained the attention of passersby. The family business evolved from Carlene’s youthful experiences of growing up with a father who was an antique dealer.
“It was always in her blood,” says Betsy, admitting that she used to think her mom’s love for finding vintage pieces was a little crazy until she graduated from college and finally understood the appeal.
“My mom could always look at something and know how it was going to work out,” says Betsy, “but I had to evolve over time.” Now with a keen eye for the craft, Betsy’s funky and colorful flair complements her mother’s shabby chic style.
With a mix of furnishings including tables, chairs, bed sets, vanities and mirrors, the pair scope out estate sales, auctions and flea markets looking for one-of-a-kind pieces they can revive.
Some of their most popular items include accent tables and chairs ranging from $79 to $199 and refurbished dining sets. One dinette set ($695), which seats six, includes a table and chairs in a distressed white finish with French script upholstery on the seats.
Other popular products include items in their original finishes, such as a recent teal chest with a naturally chipped finish, priced at $795. “They’re beautiful pieces because you could never make it happen with a paint brush,” says Betsy. “People love to see pieces like that.”
The storeowners also sell a line of Sensible Scents candles and vintage jewelry by Nostalgia’s Cottage designers Terri Osborne and Kathy Stantz, which debuted in the shop during November’s gallery hop.
In the coming months, the store will dedicate a corner for baby items, called Baby Alma. The real baby Alma, the first member of the third generation of Crist women, is due to arrive in February.
Winterizing your place
Nasty air leaks through window cracks can be corrected with some energy-efficient solutions offered by Lowe’s assistant manager Chad Schmidt, of the Dublin store at 6555 Dublin Center Dr.
• Use a combination of foam weather stripping and film covering over and around older windows. This dual system seals the edges and maximizes the amount of heat retention in the home.
• Apply caulking cord as needed to the outside surface of small areas that leak air around the chimney, windows or doors. This is a removable and temporary fix to the problem.
• Pay attention to light switch covers, electrical outlets, pipes and cords when evaluating the outer walls of the home. Installing foam switch plate seals, behind the light switch and outlet covers, as well as foam seal around all piping and cord exits, will prevent unwanted air from sneaking in and out.
• To enhance the energy efficiency of a door, add rubber weather stripping to its bottom. Coupled with a foam sealer around the door frame, this duo will keep wind and air out.
• Check for proper insulation in the attic and crawl space. Cellulose, an eco-friendly material, or blown fiberglass, are effective air-sealing solutions for these spaces.
• Keep your blinds open during the day to let the sun in, but close them at night to keep the heat from escaping. This is one of the easiest and most cost-effective measures you can take.
• Finally, don’t forget that you can receive tax credits of up to 10 percent of product cost by installing Energy Star windows and doors. This includes up to $200 for eligible windows and skylights and $500 for eligible doors.
Tropical plant survival tips
This winter, Jack and Gerline Lude’s basement and solarium are packed with 120 containers of once-lush tropical plants. For 20 years, the couple has learned through trial and error to overwinter their beloved tropicals and other plants.
“They’re not going to look beautiful like in summer or spring but they’ll survive,” says Jack, who fell in love with tropicals while vacationing in the Virgin Islands. Later, he started experimenting with them in the couple’s Minerva Park backyard.
According to John Reiner of Oakland Nurseries, Jack’s not alone. Interest in tropicals has grown exponentially in the last three to four years, and Reiner attributes that to a “Jimmy Buffett syndrome.”
“When people see tropicals, they think of fun, happy vacation images, plus they love the blast of color they bring to the landscape,” Reiner says.
Following are some tips for overwintering offered by Jack:
• Place tropical plants in five- to 10-gallon containers with drainage holes and plant them in the landscape in late spring after the threat of frost. To encourage lots of blooms, feed the plants with a high phosphorus fertilizer such as a 10-50-10. Follow the labels for the plants’ growing needs, and be sure to note that many require lots of water.
After enjoying the tropicals all summer, cut them back, especially larger ones such as banana trees, water them thoroughly, then let them drain before moving them indoors.
The ideal indoor conditions are 60 to 65 degrees with indirect light. Consider a garage, a four-seasons room or a southeastern- or southwestern-facing windowed room.
• Thoroughly water the plants monthly and allow them to fully drain each time. Jack warns that over-watering can rot roots. Watch for spider mites and white mealy bugs, and treat with an insecticide if necessary.
• Jack recommends angel’s trumpet for its growing ease, spectacular blooms and intoxicating perfume. He says the plant is simple to multiply—cut off a branch, dip the end in a rooting hormone and place it in soil. He’s also grown banana trees for 14 years and harvested seven crops of fruit. Plumeria, another favorite, produces the blooms found in Hawaiian leis.
• Plant cold-hardy look-alikes. Hardy hibiscus with dinner-plate-size blooms resemble their tropical counterparts yet thrive in Central Ohio’s climate.