When your shower drain becomes clogged, your first instinct might be to reach for a chemical clog remover—until you read the safety warnings on the back of the bottle. Chemical clog removers don’t just pose a threat to your safety, but can also eat away at your pipes over time. Here are two simple ways to unclog your shower drain naturally.

Craftsman bungalow meets Montana meets modern living inside the home. While the house has Craftsman bungalow style, one of the challenges was to balance that feeling with a more modern open floor plan and higher ceilings (they are closer to 10 feet high rather than the 8-foot ceilings typically seen in bungalows). The details also offer a mix; some of the trimwork is distinctly Craftsman style, while the rugged reclaimed fir beams are a nod to Montana lodges.

A library/study is tucked behind the fireplace, with a sliding door that’s usually open. “My clients are very educated and love books; they just like the feeling of having books around them as part of their life,” Dennee says. Bozeman’s being a university town and all of the culture that goes with that were a big part of why they chose it. In addition, there are no TVs aboveground; the homeowners like to watch only sports and movies, and when they do, they watch their one TV in the partially finished basement.

“This kitchen is very authentic, and the homeowners really use it as it is supposed to be used,” Dennee says. For example, they chop right on the maple butcher block island countertop, as intended.

Dennee designed the dining room to fit around the couple’s existing dining room table and chairs. “This was a place where I could give them a similar feeling to their Seattle home,” he says. He also used the room to strengthen the connection between the house and the yard. French doors open onto the covered patio, and oversize double-hung windows increase the scale of the openings to the outdoors. The bay shape is a break from tradition.

French doors off the kitchen also lead out to the covered patio. The outdoor room was one aspect Dennee really had to sell his clients on. “We don’t have bugs in Montana, and there are many days when it’s a wonderful place to be outside,” he says. With its large fieldstone fireplace, comfortable seating, cover, lighting and cozy proportions, it has become a favorite space, especially for meals, and the homeowners are glad he talked them into it.

If your space is lacking something but you’re not sure what it is, look up. Your white ceiling may be calling for a little pizzazz. It may not have occurred to you to paint the ceiling, but it’s a sixth surface that can dramatically affect your decor. The right color choice depends on the overall feel you want to achieve. If you’ve got the itch to throw a coat of paint northward, check out these suggestions.

Every home owner, regardless of his or her neighborhood, should consider security lighting. A well-lit property can be a major deterrent to potential burglars, and with these three smart security lighting picks, it’s also one of the most cost-effective ways to keep your home safe.

The chance to build a new house in this historic neighborhood in Bozeman, Montana, is so rare that a house had to collapse for these homeowners to have the chance. The area is sought after for its beauty, small-town feel and university, and has a similar feel to the homeowners’ former neighborhood in Seattle. “My clients were very respectful of the neighborhood’s mix of older styles and wanted their house to fit in,” says architect Greg Dennee of Locati Architects.

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