Sunbrella Savvy: Caring for Your Outdoor Cushions

Can you hear the familiar Porgy and Bess refrain? Summertime, and the livin’ is easy—at long last we’ve arrived there: delicious, lengthening days, high sun at high noon, and sun-kissed life outdoors. And with that come life’s big messes: oily sunscreen residue, splatters from granddad’s secret smoked chicken marinade, maybe electric blue Popsicle drippings or a little splash of deep crimson Malbec on the outdoor seat cushions. Ella did not include those words in her lyrics, but they’re proof positive you’re enjoying life.

You already know the Sunbrella® outdoor cushions you use on your garden or patio furniture are resilient: they’re adventure-ready, fade-resistant, willingly take a beating in the weather, and they’re no match for the triple threat: mold, mildew, and moisture. It’s why you bought them in the first place. But even the world’s most nearly-perfect outdoor seat cushion needs a little help now and then. Pull up your wicker chair and pay attention. But before we travel too far down the cushion care and maintenance road, keep three things…

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When to Wear Linen: Taking Summer’s Favorite Fabric Out of the Closet

Written by: Deb German

Everybody knows linen is for summer, but what about the other three seasons on the calendar? And what of wearing linen after Labor Day? Growing up in the South during the 60s and 70s as I did meant adherence to long-cherished cultural norms; many gave way to more modern sensibilities during the social tumult of that era, and that’s mainly a good thing. But traditionalists stood resolute on others, to wit: you should never wear linen clothing (nor summer whites, eyelet, seersucker, plaid madras, or dirty bucks) before Memorial Day, nor after Labor Day. Period. I am sure there were agitators who dared provoke the fashion police back in the day, but most people honored tradition where fashion was concerned, and many do still. It’s a big ship that moves slowly, the American South.

Funny thing is, in the here and now—a time characterized more often than not by fashion anarchy—people still care about when and when not to wear linen, and not just way down south: a quick…

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Dog Beds: Choosing the Best Nest for your Best Buddy


Deep Dish Dog Bed
Photo via orvis.com

Humans sleep about eight hours a day. It’s no wonder we’re so attentive to our beds. We take great care choosing a supportive mattress and the perfect comforters and pillows to create an inviting place to dive into at the end of a long day.

Dogs sleep between 12 to 14 hours each day and, just like us, they long…

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Alfresco Dining: A Family Affair

I think the Victorians must have known a thing or two about how to live well outdoors; there is no basis in fact for this claim, but my mind’s eye sees a woman of means with her hair swept up above her high collar, wearing an ivory brooch and bustle, sitting at an elegant wicker table not unlike the one in the picture. She is leaning in to speak to the gentleman seated at her elbow. She could be a Vanderbilt, for all I know, opining to her husband about the great, sweeping changes the railroad has brought to…

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Let (Old) Sleeping Dogs Lie: The Memory Foam Dog Bed

Written by: Deb German


Fleece Deep Dish Dog Bed with Memory Foam
Photo via orvis.com

Anybody who has ever enjoyed the company of a Siberian Husky knows they can be a handful; at one time in my life I lived with three of them in a tiny cottage, incredibly. Three makes a pack, and I’m positive they never viewed me as the alpha (silly human). We wore out a lot of dog beds in those days. When a new…

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Travel Dresses: Why They Make Good Homebodies


Passport Go2 Travel Midi Skirt
Photo via orvis.com

Wrinkle-free is really what it’s all about when it comes to your travel wardrobe, isn’t it? Who wants to pack a finicky, high-maintenance frock for the road, only to have to iron it when you get there? You want it to reach your destination looking much as it did when you packed it, smooth and crisp.

The modern travel dress and friends of its ilk are engineered to emerge unrumpled, with only a little shake and fluff. But consider this: if it works well on the…

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Tips for Selecting Dog Jackets for Spring and Summer


Reflective Dog Raincoat
Photo via orvis.com

“We have a pair of West Highland White Terriers and rain can play havoc with them as it takes a while to get them dry. These raincoats really do the job and minimize the drying job. We would highly recommend this product.” – Orvis customer from Tennessee

If you’re like me, inclement weather isn’t often a reason to stay indoors. So when I rotate my clothes for the warm seasons, I keep key pieces of outerwear handy. But do our best friends. . .

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