Foot prints

If you’re growing weary of winter boots, cheer up with a peek at some spring shoe styles. Those in fun patterns might even make you smile. There are colorful florals and abstracts that can easily become the focal point of your entire outfit but also snazzy black-and-white patterns that will add the perfect punch. • Look for patterned shoes in a variety of styles, including pumps, strappy sandals and casual flats. • Other trends: Ombre effects, embossed leathers, color-blocking in neutral colors and all sorts of fashion sneakers.

Days of our lives

Leave it to the staff at Martha Stewart Living to come up with this idea: Use a vintage calendar you uncover at a flea market, antiques shop or elsewhere. Just look for the following years, the editors suggest: 1986, 1975, 1969, 1958, 1947, 1941 or 1930. Those years’ dates match those of 2014.

Party tip

Looking for an idea for a Valentine’s Day gathering? Designer/author Kate Spade suggests this in one of her books: Invite friends to come as iconic duos. Hepburn and Tracy. Fred and Ginger. Bonnie and Clyde. Popeye and Olive Oyl.

On the shelf

Whether you’re worried about the ingredients in commercial cleaning products or just looking to save some money, here’s a book that can help: “Homemade Cleaners: Quick-and-Easy, Toxic-Free Recipes” (Ulysses Press, $14.95).

The book is written by Mandy O’Brien, a biologist, and Dionna Ford, a lawyer and natural parenting advocate. They provide recipes for natural cleaners formulated for a range of household chores, along with explanations of why they believe such alternatives are better. Most of their recipes rely on common ingredients such as vinegar, borax and hydrogen peroxide, as well as essential oils.

– Akron Beacon Journal

And finally …

“Travel is no time to be schlumpy.”

Adam Glassman, creative director O, the Oprah magazine