Basket case


March 31, 2002|By Jill Kubatko | Jill Kubatko,Sun Staff

A tisket, a tasket, what's spring without a basket? Check out Longaberger Co.'s handcrafted wares this season. Baskets and pottery are popping up in summery pastels, deep jewel colors, floral patterns and patriotic themes.

New for spring and summer are the Spring Floral serving dish and platter and pint-size crocks paired with candles in outdoorsy and fruity scents.

Also making their debut are flag-waving Old Glory and bright Spring Floral fabrics and accessories as well as five new baskets with charming names such as Row Your Boat, Stuck on You and Tiny Tote. Sold only in April are All-American baskets and pottery featuring red, white and blue accents.

Pottery and baskets sold by the $1 billion company in Dresden, Ohio, can't be found in retail stores, but can be purchased from more than 70,000 "consultants" nationwide. Baskets cost $26 to nearly $250. To find a local consultant, see

Spraying and saving

The drought upon us will undoubtedly make gardening a challenge this season, but here's a product that can give your foliage a much-needed shower. When it's your turn to water, Rain Patterns, based in Michigan, will make irrigation a snap. Flow tubes made of heavy PVC can be connected in minutes to deliver a steady spray to your vegetable or flower garden.

The kits offering circular spray heads are ideal for gardens 25, 35 or 45 feet long and help conserve water with their directed spray. Use an in-line feeder to deliver plant food while watering. Dismantle the flow tubes when fall arrives and store in the shed or garage.

Prices range from $39.99 to $74.99 depending on length. Extensions are also available. Call 810-757-2778 or visit -- J.K.

Best seat in house

If you couldn't get a seat at Camden Yards for opening day tomorrow, La-Z-Boy invites you to stay home, kick up your feet and watch the game on TV. La-Z-Boy's lineup of comfy recliners for the sports-watching, remote-clicking fan includes four models. The Atlas, a large-scale recliner, has a seat and footrest four inches wider than most recliners; the Oslo, made of soft leather with a contemporary look, rocks, reclines and comes with an ottoman; the Clancy has a hidden storage arm to keep that remote or beverage close by. And the Branson (left) uses the "BackCycler," an innovative air cushion system providing lumbar support and relieving strain on muscles. Retail cost is $819 -- less than season tickets. Find recliners at La-Z-Boy Furniture Gallery in Towson, Essex, Catonsville, Annapolis, Bel Air and Laurel and at Pasadena Furniture. -- J.K.

A drawer of warmth

Keeping your food warm just got easier. The Wolf Warming Drawer keeps up to five different dishes heated at the same time. Stainless steel and five other colored fronts are available to integrate with your kitchen's decor. Wolf Appliance Co., a manufacturer of professional cooking accessories, also sells double-ovens, cooktops, microwaves and a sub-zero freezer.

The warming drawer retails for $1,215. Trim kits for a variety of fronts run from $55 to $700. Extra containers cost $210. Find Wolf products at Appliance Distributors Unlimited in Linthicum or at Bray and Scarff locations throughout Maryland. Information: 800-532-7820. -- J.K.


* Revisit the early days before Camelot in an exhibition of black-and-white photographs depicting five days in the lives of John and Jackie Kennedy in Camelot at Dawn: John and Jacqueline Kennedy in Georgetown, May 1954. The exhibit runs from April 7 through June 30 at the Ever-green House, 4545 N. Charles St., Baltimore. The photographs taken by Orlando Suero also are featured in a newly published coffee table book of the same title by Anne Garside of the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University. Suero's fetching photos capture Jack at work as a young senator and playing football with the family, and Jackie framing Jack's artwork and preparing for her first formal dinner party. Cost for the exhibit is $3. Information: 410-516-0341. --J.K.

Home Front welcomes interesting home and garden news. Please send suggestions to Liz Atwood, Home Front, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, MD 21278, or fax to 410-783-2519. Information must be received at least four weeks in advance to be considered.

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