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Design Notes

What a stretch

There is a new type of ready-made slipcover on the market today that -- as a product release describes it -- "claims to blur the lines between standard loose-fit covers and custom slipcovers."

Stretch & Cover was created by Ernesto Cohan, a knitwear designer with his own men's clothing business. The slipcovers contain Lycra, which helps them hug the furniture and stay in place better.

Each cover comes with two tools: foam tubes -- to insert into the crevices of the furniture to pull the fabric tight and keep it in place -- and elastic bands with clips on both ends to secure the cover underneath the furniture.

The slipcovers come in a number of sizes to fit various furniture shapes and styles. Slipcovers for a recliner or wing chair cost about $99; a sofa slipcover averages $139.

Stretch & Cover slipcovers are available in catalogs such as Linen Source and Home Visions. They also can be ordered from the company at www.stretchandcover.com or by calling (888) 785-5486.

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Flower tip

Roses are not the only flowers appropriate for Valentine's Day. Here are some other blooms to consider: Calla lilies, tulips, Gerbera daisies, Stargazer lilies, even houseplants.

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Hollywood at home

Love to see how Hollywood lives -- or lived? The March issue of Architectural Digest takes you into the places the stars liked to call home. Included here: Lana Turner and Artie Shaw; Gary Cooper; Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward (shown in their 1958 rented home); Jack Lemmon in his first California house, and others.

Fast-forwarding to the present, Jessica Lange and her gardens are also featured.

Audrey Hepburn graces the cover. This is the seventh Hollywood issue the magazine has published.

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And finally . . .

"If you open it, close it. If you turn it on, turn it off. If you unlock it, lock it. If you borrow it, return it. If you're done with it, put it back. If you make a mess, clean it up. If you don't know where it goes, ask!"

Don Aslett, cleaning expert/author

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