5 Minutes for Books –
Slob Proof: Real-Life Design Solutions

by Jennifer Donovan

slobproofI have a dog, two kids, a husband — and well, me. Yes, I’m a bit of a slob. I want my home to be nice and inviting, but I’ve never gone for the stuff high-class look that some designers seem so fond of. It just doesn’t seem practical. Did I mention that I have two kids and a dog and lots of stuff, and I don’t have time to walk around after them with a broom and feather duster 24 hours a day?

Debbie Wiener is a designer who gets moms or any of us who want to combine form with practicality and long-lasting good looks that won’t take a professional cleaning service to keep it looking nice. She focuses on form and function. Her design plans make a home not only more beautiful, but more livable (including a few creative uses of remote controls!).

Are you with me? If so, I can highly recommend her book Slob Proof! Real-Life Design Solutions.

Slob Proof! is a to-the-point resource for people who want to live in their homes, not just look at them. Some people like to be able to put their feet up on the sofa, to wear their shoes in their house, and to enjoy pets (and children and grandchildren!).

Debbie Wiener is on your side.

She explains why color and pattern are your friends, and even recommends some specific brands and products. I would have liked to see more of this, perhaps, and what I was really hoping for was some organizational or storage information. I know it’s not an organizing book, but the fact is that for most of us our rooms and furniture are not showcases, but areas that house work-stations, hold books and games and toys etc.

But if you are redoing any of your rooms — floors, walls or furniture — as we have been doing gradually, I can highly recommend this book to you.

And the good news is that one of you can win your own copy of the book (open to U.S. and Canadian residents).

Just leave a comment here to win, and we’ll announce the winner in next week’s book review column right here.

Want to find out more about Debbie’s Slobproof way of decorating?

Her website: http://mydesigningsolutions.com/
Her blog: http://debbiewiener.com/
Her furniture line: http://slobproof.com/
Her facebook: Debbie Wiener
Her Twitter: @debbiewiener

The winners of last week’s book I am Nujood, Age 10 and Divorced are #4 Stephanie Meyers, #128 Chrysa, #25 Kim

Disclosure: I received a copy of the book for review purposes

Written by book blogger Jennifer Donovan, who blogs at Snapshot and manages 5 Minutes for Books, which is one reason her house is a mess!

Email Author    |    Website About Jennifer Donovan

Jennifer Donovan has been a part of the 5 Minutes for Mom team since 2007. She writes product reviews, covers events, and manages the 5 Minutes for Books weekly column and website. She lives in Houston and blogs at Snapshot about life with her family.

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{ 64 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Dezi Allen March 1, 2010 at 12:52 am

Looks like a great one!


2 Kirsten T. March 1, 2010 at 6:56 am

I am such a design dunce, maybe this could help.


3 Julia March 1, 2010 at 8:02 am

This sounds right up my alley. I haven’t a clue when it comes to design.


4 Bonnie March 1, 2010 at 8:46 am

I would love some practical advice.


5 hair bow girl March 1, 2010 at 9:28 am

When you have kids it’s like as soon as you clean a room up it is messy again in a matter of few minutes. Thanks for the recommendation!

Holly :)


6 www.fromdiaperstodorms.com March 1, 2010 at 10:51 am

A friend of mine loves stuff like this and I would really like to win this so I can pass it on to her. Thanks for the chance to win!


7 The Praying Mom March 1, 2010 at 11:28 am

I would love a copy of this!


8 Colorful Childhood March 1, 2010 at 1:13 pm

I would love a copy!


9 Julie March 1, 2010 at 1:50 pm

I heard Wiener talk about slobproofing on NPR and it was one of those moments they talk about in the fundraising drives … when you sit in your car until the end of the story laughing. Particularly love her take on how to choose a couch color: Match it to the most obvious dirt in your house.

Great post, great book, great topic.



10 Annette W March 1, 2010 at 2:29 pm

You sound like me. I have no “decorating design.” I like my home comfortable. Ideally the clutter and toys would be picked up, but the reality is they go overlooked (by me at least).

I’d love this book!


11 Robyn Popham March 1, 2010 at 2:33 pm

This would be a great read to help me with my home.


12 Jessica Harwood March 1, 2010 at 2:42 pm

This book sounds awesome! I want so badly to know how to decorate and have nice “looking” things while still living in my house! I would love to own this book!


13 Hailey March 1, 2010 at 3:07 pm

I need this book! :)


14 Linda Kish March 1, 2010 at 3:21 pm

I need this book so much. My house is a disaster.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com


15 Melissa March 1, 2010 at 3:28 pm

Looks like a great book!


16 Jess March 1, 2010 at 3:41 pm

Sounds like a great book. Thx for the highlight. I would love a copy!


17 katklaw777 March 1, 2010 at 4:26 pm

Wish you were giving away 20 copies of this book…I really do need it.
Thanks for the great giveaway!


18 Holly March 1, 2010 at 4:52 pm

SOOO need help with this!!


19 Jean March 1, 2010 at 6:00 pm

Yeah, I totally need this book. :)


20 Elizabeth March 1, 2010 at 6:25 pm

i’d love to get advice like this!


21 Leilani March 1, 2010 at 6:33 pm

This would be great for my with my two little boys. Thanks!


22 Kelly H March 1, 2010 at 7:33 pm

Just the book we need around here, would love to see decorating that is functional as well as pretty and fun, maybe they could put out a companion organizational book as that is what we mostly need, just where does all the stuff we have FIT into our house…. and we just got rid of a bunch:)


23 Aimee Wade March 1, 2010 at 7:48 pm

Boy do I need this! I have a feeling you’re going to pick me!


24 Christine March 1, 2010 at 7:51 pm

I just bought a house, so clearly I need this pronto.


25 Maggie March 1, 2010 at 7:52 pm

Sounds like the book for me! Thanks for posting about it!


26 Just Mom March 1, 2010 at 8:01 pm

Sounds like a good one! please enter me.


27 Martha C March 1, 2010 at 8:25 pm

I really need this book! I am with you Jennifer (probably why we get along so well). I’d like to keep my house looking good too!


28 Katrina March 1, 2010 at 8:54 pm

I would love to win a copy of this book. We’re big on “living” here, but sometimes the results are a bit too obvious. :)


29 Amy March 1, 2010 at 9:17 pm

I would love to win this book. It seems like every time I announce that we’re all going to quickly clean up the living room, one of the kids asks, “Who’s coming over?” ;) My husband calls it “the fake house” when I clean up (and bulldoze) for company…but I LIKE the fake house!


30 Tasha Hickert March 1, 2010 at 9:21 pm

Ooohhh pick me, pick me! I neeeeeeeeddd this book! I have a husband that works a crazy rotating shift, 3 kids, a dog, and a guinea pig. I hold monthly classes in my home and while I am able to get my house clean it just never looks very put together. Thank you so much for the chance to win!!


31 Marj M. March 1, 2010 at 11:38 pm

I am The Queen of Design Dumb. It might help me a bit.


32 MageeMommy March 2, 2010 at 12:09 am

This would be great to win!!!


33 Anne G March 2, 2010 at 6:50 am

This sounds perfect for me.


34 Michele Anne March 2, 2010 at 10:21 am

would love to have a copy of this book…sign me uph


35 Mama Zen March 2, 2010 at 10:29 am

I think that I need this one!


36 Clean Mom messy home March 2, 2010 at 11:06 am

What if I’m the clean one and no one wants to help? Looks like a great book!


37 Ellen C. March 2, 2010 at 11:12 am

My husband could use this book. Thanks for the chance.


38 cris March 2, 2010 at 2:37 pm

I just saw another review of this earlier today – it sounds great.


39 crayola machine March 2, 2010 at 3:14 pm

Now that’s more like it. Every mom wants their home reinvented but then again the creativity moms have are put to the limits simply because of the fear of leaving their homes and coming back to a wasteland of a home compliments of the playful preschoolers and the huge pets we have. Well I believe every house mom or even working moms should grab a copy. Dad should grab a copy too or get one for mom. It’s about time we reinvented style without the worry of having to think of how we clean up the mess. Well, that’s what moms do best, look after their families and homes ensuring that they are safe, comfortable and livable.


40 Winning Readings March 2, 2010 at 9:25 pm

This looks SOOO useful!

We posted about this giveaway at Winning Readings: http://winningreadings.blogspot.com/2010/03/slob-proof.html

janemaritz at yahoo dot com


41 Petula March 2, 2010 at 9:39 pm

That sounds like an interesting book that’s different than some of the regular organizational ones.


42 Wendy M March 2, 2010 at 9:49 pm

I would love to be entered. Sounds like a great book.


43 Sara March 2, 2010 at 10:02 pm

That book looks great! Would love the chance to win it. I don’t have a clue when it comes to design and could desperately use some tips!


44 Forgetfulone March 2, 2010 at 10:08 pm

This book could save me from my despair over my step-slobs, oops, I mean step-kids! LOL I’d love to win it.


45 Forgetfulone March 2, 2010 at 10:09 pm

I’m a subscriber!


46 LaVonne March 2, 2010 at 10:28 pm

I love the title of this book. It sounds great. Thanks! ;)


47 Benita G . March 3, 2010 at 12:18 am

I could really use this book. Thanks for the possibility.



48 Shari D March 3, 2010 at 10:37 am

I could use the help from this book!


49 Jill H. March 3, 2010 at 10:56 am

Sounds like something I need to put on my “must read” list!


50 Jill H. March 3, 2010 at 10:56 am

Feed Subsciber


51 Jill H. March 3, 2010 at 10:56 am

Newsletter Subscriber


52 Kristi March 3, 2010 at 3:21 pm

Hello – I would love to win a copy of this book!

kherbrand at comcast dot net


53 Jody March 3, 2010 at 4:09 pm

If you could see my entire houe you would know how much I need this book.



54 Carol March 3, 2010 at 8:31 pm

There are days and projects that make this book jump to the front of my stack of books!


55 Judy March 4, 2010 at 4:05 am

My question is, how do I get the rest of the family to cooperate? My idea of comfortable is clutter free, theirs is not.


56 Wendy March 4, 2010 at 3:22 pm

I could really use this in my house!


57 Some Lucky Dog March 4, 2010 at 3:37 pm

I love design books! This one sounds awesome!


58 Rhonda Struthers March 4, 2010 at 7:56 pm

This is perfect. I am short on time and could use any help I can get

rhondastruthers AT yahoo dot ca


59 Francine Anchondo March 5, 2010 at 5:52 pm

Thanks for the giveaway.


60 Angela Hipp March 7, 2010 at 9:08 am

In need of this book! Thanks for the giveaway.


61 Beth March 7, 2010 at 4:43 pm

Sounds like a lot of good tips! I’d love to be entered.


62 Terri March 8, 2010 at 1:57 am

This sounds like a great book for a busy messy family! I hope I win!


63 carol l March 8, 2010 at 9:49 am

This looks like it would get me going on a few projects I need to do!


64 Kim March 8, 2010 at 1:09 pm

I need this book desperately! Would love to win a copy! : )


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