Hammer Time!

Get house proud at the 24th Annual Builders Home & Remodeling Show

Your living space may be beautiful as is -- or it may be a touch, ah, homely, inclining you to change some things structurally or visually. The great Kentucky farmer/writer/activist Wendell Berry put it well in his poem "The Design of a House": "But the house is a shambles unless/the vision of its perfection/upholds it like stone."

Also, you naturally want to tend to your investment. After all, if you've bought a house or condo, you know that it's the most nerve-shreddingly large amount of money you'll ever spend on one thing. Ergo, you'll be interested in the St. Louis 24th Annual Builders Home & Remodeling Show at America's Center downtown (701 Convention Center Plaza).

For three days (Friday through Sunday, August 27 through 29), the big hall hosts 500-plus booths and more than 240 exhibitors, as well as speakers and workshops. Local home-remodeling experts are on-site en masse to guide you through the intricacies of home repair and renovation, whether you want to wallpaper a wall or just take the sucker down to fashion a new, larger space. And if you're one of the many Americans who watch HGTV's Designing for the Sexes, catch its host, Michael Payne, live and in person Friday at 2 p.m. and Saturday at noon and 3:30 p.m. Payne discusses typical disagreements couples have during home makeovers: Here's help for Venusians and Martians in reconciling their clashing color preferences. Additionally, home-décor expert Kay Kaduce (pictured) teaches first-come, first-served Hands-On, Do-It-Yourself Wall Makeover Workshops Friday (noon and 3 p.m.), Saturday (noon, 3 and 7 p.m.) and Sunday (noon and 2 p.m.).

For all-inclusive admission, adults pay $7; children ages six through twelve cost their parents $3 a tousled head. Kids five and younger get in free. The show runs 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Visit www.stlhomeshow.com for more information (and an admission coupon).