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“Pittsburgh Potties”: A Real & Very Mysterious Thing

Ever wandered down into someone’s basement and seen a fully functional toilet in the middle of the room? ‘Pittsburgh Potties’ are just that —common commodes installed in your average unfinished basement, without walls or doors —and so named because of their prevalence in Western Pennsylvania. Why, you might be asking, is this an actual thing in this area? I’m glad you’re as curious as I was.

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therapy

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Posted on Sep 19, 2017

Recommended Reading: Hollywood is really mad at Rotten Tomatoes


Attacked by Rotten Tomatoes
Brooks Barnes,
The New York Times

The film scores tallied by Rotten Tomatoes are what many moviegoers use to decide how to spend their money. As you might expect, this doesn’t make some folks in Hollywood too happy. In…

Gadget

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Posted on Sep 9, 2017

The New Look For the Kitchen is More Classic Than Ever

Lately, new designs for the kitchen look more and more like old designs for the kitchen. There’s a certain style of British kitchen — vintage-style appliances, Shaker-style cabinets, a bit austere but with very traditional accents — that’s becoming very popular. Looking at these kitchens, I am struck by the fact that they look remarkably similar to some of the 1920s kitchens I came across while researching this series about the history of kitchen design . Everything old is new again — and in this case, what’s particularly old is particularly new.

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therapy

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Posted on Sep 3, 2017

For This Brief Period, Kitchens Went Totally Wild — 100 Years in the Kitchen

The kitchen many not seem like the most adventurous room in the home (especially today as we gravitate toward all white kitchens), but there was a time when it was bold and daring. You see little hints of this in the ’60s, but it’s in the ’70s that the kitchen started to get really wild.

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therapy

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Posted on Sep 2, 2017

Quiz: Can You Match the Bathroom to the Decade?

Ah the vintage bathroom: it’s either loved to the point that tears are shed upon hearing that someone ripped out an authentic 1950s space (the original tiles — nooo!!), or loathed so much that it’s the first thing someone renovates upon moving into a fixer upper (white subway tiles, here I come!). Whichever side you fall on—as there doesn’t appear to be a limbo between those two stances—you’re still likely to have fun making your best guesses in today’s quiz featuring bathrooms from the ’40s to the ’80s. “Mamie pink ” tiles, wall-to-wall shag carpeting (yes…in the bathroom), embroidered dividing walls…can you match the bathroom to the decade? Share your results in the comments below!

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therapy

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Posted on Aug 31, 2017

How A Decade of Domesticity Changed Our Nation’s Kitchens — 100 Years in the Kitchen

Pink everywhere! It must be the 1950s. This kitchen is a design from 1958, spotted on Midcentury Living .

(Image credit: Midcentury Living )

It’s the 1950s. The war is over, and the United States is enjoying a wave of unprecedented prosperity. Millions of GIs returned, eager for the comforts of home that they had been missing, and everyone settled down to a kind of nationwide nesting. Record numbers of homes were being built in the newly developed suburbs, and the center of all those homes was the kitchen.

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therapy

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Posted on Aug 25, 2017

Where It All Began for Me: An Ode to the JCPenney Catalog

(Image credit: WishbookWeb )

Imagine if you will, that it is 1995 and a young, chubby, overly-enthusiastic girl approaches her mother in the kitchen. Seemingly out of nowhere she announces her intent to paint her bedroom a “bright peach” and complement that color choice with an “ivy border!”. Her mother says “Oh, that’s nice.” and returns to her Tuna Helper. Where did this girl find such inspiration? Where did she develop such an eye for groundbreaking decor, you ask? Why, the JCPenney catalog, of course.

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therapy

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Posted on Aug 25, 2017

These Decorating Ideas from 1970 are Still Just as Good Today

I grew up on books, and, as soon as I was old enough to (almost) appreciate this sort of thing, the decorating books my mom bought at garage sales. They came from eras unknown to me — the late 1960s and early ’70s, where bright colors and unusual shapes and a kind of unabashed exuberance reigned. I drank them in, the same way I did my parents’ oversize National Geographic atlas, fascinated by the hints of faraway lands I found therein.

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therapy

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Posted on Aug 20, 2017

Guess the Decade Decor Quiz: Kitchens from the ’30s to ’80s

Trends in home decor can be short lived. Your typical en vogue item will be passé within a year or three (sometimes, even within months), but kitchens are a bit of an exception. Hardwired to a home, swapping out the style of your kitchen takes a much firmer commitment and, as a result, the aesthetics are slower to evolve. That being said, a 1950s kitchen looked like a 1950s kitchen for the majority of the decade and sometimes into the next. The question is, can you match the decade to the kitchen? Some are pretty easy (hey, we like to hand out a few freebies) but others are tricky. Ready to test your design eye?

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therapy

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Posted on Aug 19, 2017

Go Down the Rabbit Hole: 10 Vintage Newspaper & Magazine Ads

I love a good print ad. Maybe it’s my magazine background shining through, but it’s difficult for me to see the interplay of typeface and imagery on paper as anything but artful, even though I know I’m being marketed to. Sorry if that makes me complicit, Marshall McLuhan ! But I prefer to think of myself as just a geek for fonts, puns, pictures and products, especially when they’re clever. And while advertising has definitely gotten slicker over the years—and clearly colonized other platforms, it’s amazing how different and yet somewhat similar old ads are to the ones today. So let’s get lost in a few vintage home ads to see just how much (or little) things have changed.

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therapy

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Posted on Aug 18, 2017

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