Living

Warm up a room with a throw

Throws run a close second to slipcovers in the "home-goods-gone-bad" category.

Done right, they're lovable lifesavers; done wrong, they're egregious eyesores.

Still, we're giving throws a lingering glance as families spend more time at home on the couch, with thermostats set lower. Here are our picks:

Washable luxury: Although it's 100 percent virgin wool from sheep in the mountains of Eastern Europe, the natural-hued plaid Village Blanket at Jayson Home and Garden is machine washable. Here's why: After weaving, the blankets are processed in mountain river-powered washing machines to preshrink them. The wool is gathered from sheep breeds of the Rhodope and Pirin mountains, said to produce soft fibers with more texture than common merino wool. Village Blanket, $195, http://jaysonhomeandgarden.com

Great Scots: Adam Glassman, creative director of O, the Oprah magazine, named The Scottish Weaver's authentic, Scottish blankets as one of his favorites. Choose your clan colors or colors to match your room. Wool tartan blankets, $73, http://thescottishweaver.com

Warm fuzzies: A faux fur throws caught our eye. The reversible faux mink animal throw might be just what Santa ordered for someone with a sense of glamour and humor. $99.95 in chinchilla/black, zebra/white or leopard/brown, at http://hsn.com

Frills to thrill: Cozy enough to pass for cashmere at first touch, Martha Stewart's ruffled throws for Macy's are acrylic for affordability and machine washability. $39.99 (on sale) in several colors at http://macys.com/marthastewart as well as Macy's stores

Red hot: Even from a distance, red warms up a room. The color is integrated into the Alessandra Branca Collection 100 percent organic cotton woven blanket. It's machine washable. $225, http://branca.com

- Wendy Donahue, Chicago Tribune

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