Carpets and rug are not widely used in warm countries, but in northern Europe and the United States, they are a basic decorating feature. Carpets give a lovely sensation when you walk over them, especially barefoot, and also offer interesting aesthetic possibilities. They are seamless and therefore unify spaces, but also can be used to mark off zones, or areas of activity. They permit versatile solutions for our interior design due to the colors, textures, and finishes they come in.
When choosing a carpets and rug, bear in mind that it will be tacked down, or fitted, and can last many years if well looked after so it will have to be easily adaptable to any new decoration style we may wish to achieve. Another quality of carpets is the acoustic and thermal insulation they provide. They are suitable for all the rooms in the house, except in the bathroom and kitchen unless you are prepared to make the extra effort to ensure they do not get wet or stained when bathing or cooking.
Unfortunately, they can get dirty easily and may be difficult to clean. They are not the most hygienic of floors. When choosing a carpet, take into consideration its texture, pile, the yarn, weight, density, color, and design. Most carpet is made of sheep’s wool, which is durable, dyes readily, and handles easily. For floors that are heavily used or in contact with the open air, use durable materials like stone, marble, tiles, and some types of hardwoods.
Do not use carpets and rugs if you have pets or if you or your family members suffer from allergies to dust: they get dirty easily. Vacuum carpets regularly so that neither dust nor dirt accumulates in them. Make sure all carpets used on the floor are designed for floor use: some carpets are intended for wall use. Avoid spills because stains are hard to remove from carpeting. Carpets give a space a natural look and feel, however, they are made of delicate material and often do not stand up well to humidity.
When decorating a bedroom, keep in mind that the end result should produce a disitnct and memorable impression. Colors, space and decorations all set a bedroom's mood, and when put together well, can create a definite, pleasurable look.
When it comes to the arrangement of items in a bedroom, symmetry is the most important factor. The bedroom is your personal space and should not be cluttered with too many objects creating a claustrophobic effect. For a room to seem personal, special touches should be added that reflect your special loves and interests. This includes your favorite colors, books, photographs, etc. Make sure colors are balanced in subtle shades reflecting your lifestyle and interests. The older generation seems to prefer more subdued shades than the younger generation, who opt for bright, textured colors. To maintain balance, the color of a chair placed at one end of the room can be repeated on throw, pillows or carpet. Furniture in the bedroom is of utmost importance. Don't over do it with too many pieces making your bedroom look overdressed and cluttered. The size of the bed should be in proportion to the size of the bedroom. What matters the most is comfort. Therefore, a bed should offer quality, comfort and a feeling of elegance. Nightstands or side tables should be on either side of the bed for books, medications and telephone. A dressing table comes in handy for women, and dressers with lots of storage space are ideal. Ample closet space is important, as are mirrors and wall decor. Mirrors help to give a room a larger look and also help to reflect light. Lighting should be gentle and relaxing. Valence lighting is ideal for bedrooms, and colored lights can be used for added effects. Subtle light gives a romantic feeling to the room, and focused light is good for detail work like reading without disturbing someone sleeping in the room.
Finally, a bedroom should be well-ventilated, designed for comfort and always stocked with a vase of flowers for a fresh feeling.
Those who owned a glass coffee table some years ago are among the select few who can be said to have the wealth and the taste to keep the most necessitating cosmetic palate. It is only those who had the good taste and good fortune that could own them, as this was what they signified. That was why they could only be found in the most modern and upwardly mobile homes around the world.
Over the decades, things are no longer how they used to be. They have changed. These days, just about anyone can own a glass coffee table, unlike how it used to be. Why? They are now much more affordable that even the middle-class can use them as attractive living room pieces of furniture and still enjoy the feel of having good taste and class. Having a glass coffee table still shows a sign of elegance and style. These days they are now affordable for almost everyone.
Brass is what surrounds the classic glass coffee tables. Brass gives the reflective material much more gleam and brightness. Today, anyone can buy these pieces as antiques. If you don't want to buy them as antiques, you can still buy them brand new. Add the brass-accented coffee table to your room and get the wonderful glow it brings.
No matter how good your decor looks, it can be made to look better with the seemingly timeless tables. Of course, the glass coffee table can easily fit into any room and would not take away the general feel of the design of the room. The unostentatious feature of the table is elegant without being overmastering. That is why you can put a glass coffee table almost anywhere.
To show you how timeless these tables are, my glass coffee table was passed down to me from my beloved parents. That is why I love the piece so much. Sadly I don't use it now because my energetic and curious toddler is all over the place. I don't want her to get too energetic near that piece of glass as destruction can happen, if you know what I mean. This is one of the problems with having such special glass piece of furniture.
The technique I used the first time to get my toddler away from the glass coffee table didn't seem to work. I tried to always boom "NO" each time my toddler neared the table, but this wasn't effective. Another technique I tried was to put a bummer around the glass table. Still it didn't work. The table just seemed to attract my daughter more and more.
My toddler just doesn't want to stay away from the table. I have stood guard many times with a constant supply of window cleaner which I used to clean up my daughter's fingerprints from the glass. But each time I took her away from the forbidden object, she just goes back to it like bees to honey. Now, I am running out of options. What I will do now is just to get my beloved glass coffee table away from her reach, until she has grown up. Then, my only worry will be her father!
In many homes, especially in suburban and rural locations, the patio is one of the most cherished places in the home. Patios remind us of good times with friends and family, as the kids play and the ribs sizzle on the barbecue. Many of us also spend a considerable amount of money on our patio furniture and equipment to make it a more inviting and charming location.
Patio awnings are one way to increase the enjoyment of your patio experience. Patio awnings provide shelter from summer heat and provide much-needed shade on those sweltering evening cookouts. Patio awnings are increasing in popularity and are available in an endless variety of styles, colors and options.
Some people like the fact that patio awnings seem to add space and square footage to a home. A patio in itself is an attractive feature of any home. When you add patio awnings, however, it seems almost as if a room has been added to the home. A patio awning seems to almost enclose the patio and creates an outdoor room that everyone is sure to enjoy.
Patio awnings are available in both manual and electronic styles. The manual style patio awnings allow the homeowner to manually adjust the depth, or pitch, of the awning’s fabric. You can choose to have the awning completely open or merely partially open according to your preferences. Automatic, or electronic, patio awnings are controlled by electronic “arms” with the push of a button; many also have remote controls for easier use. Automatic patio awnings usually also come with a manual override feature in case of a power outage. or if the motor should stop performing.
Do you want to try your hand at building a platform bed? For those of you who don’t yet know what a platform bed is, it’s an exciting, old way of sleeping that incorporates a simple, elegant frame and a single mattress. Its lines have been used in Europe, Scandinavia, and Japan for hundreds, if not thousands of years. Platform beds can be made of wood or metal. If you’re looking to build a platform bed, you’re probably thinking about wood.
Platform beds can be extremely simple. The extremely simple platform beds have no headboard or footboard, and certainly no canopy. They incorporate slats, which, in effect, replace the need for a box spring, since, because they are sturdy yet somehow slightly flexible, support the single mattress on top. The result is that you get a good night’s sleep, are very comfortable, and yet don’t end up with back pains or numb muscles in the morning.
It’s ever better for your back than sleeping on the floor. And now, with the rapid proliferation of memory foam, your platform bed can be even more comfortable and healthy. Memory foam is a gel-like polymer that accepts your shapes and bones, but supports it fully. (It was first used in hospitals, and is now a popular mattress and pillow material.)
Platform bed plans can be more complex too; you can add headboards, footboards, canopies, even extra flourishes and storage units. You can build the storage units as one with the bed frame, or you can create rolling drawers supported by castors, so that the drawers are modifiable and easily maneuverable throughout your bedroom.
It’s not the most difficult job in the world for a handyperson. If you want to build a platform bed, you can order platform bed plans from any of a number of plans retailers. Woodworking clubs, furniture enthusiast groups, and other organizations can give or sell you plans. You can also buy plans online.
Ready to be a little wild in your decorating?
The secret to good decorating is to be bold and creative without ever being tasteless. Here’s an idea which is unique enough to get attention, yet will never be out of place.
Instead of just flowers in a silk arrangement, use feathers! Feathers bring an added bit of texture and life to the standard silk flower display. Pheasant and peacock feathers will add height and drama. Bright colored feathers will make your display eye-catching and unique. To add softness to a bouquet, try ostrich plumes..
You may want to leave the flowers out and make your arrangement entirely out of feathers. An interesting container can serve as a wonderful starting point. Search for one with an animal skin motif. Duck feathers in a leather container will add a manly feel to any office or gameroom. Short feathers at the base, with spikes of pheasant plumes, create an attention drawing piece for a buffet or hall table.
Exotic feathers can add spice to a bedroom. Put them out with candles for a special night, and create a very romantic mood. You might even try a boa for yourself!
Look outdoors for feathers of local birds from your area. You can use these to make a statement about your love of where you’ve chosen to live. Take a walk in a nearby wooded park and soon you’ll have a collection from local birds. Typically these are small feathers, yet they’ll say "home" in a cute display on an end table.
Search the floral section of your favorite craft store for interesting natural items such as moss, twigs and dried seeds to add to your design. A skilled florist will help you change these elements into a stunning display for your home.
Don’t be afraid to experiment. You’re sure to draw interesting comments and with reasonable consideration, you’ll add a stimulating look to any room.
If you've shopped for new kitchen cabinets recently, you know that it's often much more economical to refinish your old cabinets than to buy new ones. Here are 8 tips that will make your kitchen cabinet refinishing a huge success.
1. If your cabinets are painted, remove the paint with a chemical stripper. If your cabinets are stained or varnished, either clean the surface well or remove most of the stain or varnish with a chemical refinisher.
2. Take the doors off your cabinets and remove the handles and hardware. It will be much easier if you lay the doors flat to work on them.
3. Check to see how much damage there is to the cabinets. If there is only minor damage, such as dark stains around the door handles, just clean these areas. Use a synthetic steel wool pad because it won't hurt your fingers or get caught on the wood grain.
4. Dip the pad in paint thinner, mineral spirits, or turpentine, and scrub the stains. Then lightly scrub the whole surface, cleaning and dulling it so the new finish will stick.
5. Once you've cleaned the surface and removed the dark stains, wipe on an oil-based, clear finish such as Minwax. All clear finishes are low-odor and most are available in either glossy or satin finish. Apply several coats for a thicker finish.
6. If you find you need to redo more than just a few stained areas, use a chemical refinisher - a strong solvent cleaner that dissolves and removes part of the old varnish. Ask an expert at your local paint store to suggest a good quality refinisher.
7. When you're using the chemical refinisher, work in small areas, and scrub the finish with a synthetic steel wool pad. The chemical refinisher will remove the finish and even out the color of the wood and stain. Rinse the pad in more refinisher when it gets clogged with dirty finish.
8. The cabinet's surface should be smooth and evenly colored after you've scrubbed the whole surface. If you find it isn't, just wipe the entire cabinet in long, overlapping strokes with clean refinisher and clean steel wool in long, overlapping strokes. Most of the stain color will remain, and the wood will be very smooth.
It's extremely important that you wear protective clothing and make sure that your work area is well-ventilated when you're refinishing your cabinets. And don't forget to follow all safety precautions on the refinishing product labels.
By following the 8 tips above, you're sure to enjoy your newly-refinished, beautiful kitchen cabinets for many years.
Here are some easy tips to decorate your home. Taking a few moments to think about your home will help you fully enjoy it.
Think about your home, and answer these questions:
1. What do you want it to be? If you want your home to be a tranquil oasis in a busy world, are your colors soothing or do they shout? If you want a fun place for friends to gather, do you have plenty of seating?
2. What are your main hobbies and activities? What do you need for these activities? For instance, if you have a collection that you work on often, get storage containers for it that can be easily opened or put away. If it’s a lot of trouble to get at your collection, you either won’t spend the time on it, or else might be tempted to leave it out and risk losing or breaking certain pieces.
3. Who will be using the space? How many people will be living there? What ages? It’s important for every person to have a space that’s their own. Whether it’s a special chair, couch, desk or a section of a room, everyone needs ‘their space’. If you’re planning to do video aerobics, you’ll need room to move around in front of the TV!
4. What about your things? It’s easy to become very messy if things don’t have a place. A small filing cabinet is a must for many people – it’s a great place to store all the papers that you don’t know what to do with!
5. How much do you really need? Too much furniture makes a room seem crowded. The bare essentials are a couch and chair, a table and chairs for eating, a bed and place for your clothes. After that, think hard about what you need or don’t need. Will you really use that computer desk – or would you rather sit on the couch with a laptop?
6. Think about the traffic flow. You want to be able to walk anywhere in the room without bumping into furniture. Try drawing furniture placement on paper as a first step.
7. Pick a focal point - your Greystone Properties home has unique features. What do you want to see when your first walk in the room? If you have nice windows with great lighting, are you emphasizing it? Everyone feels brighter in sunshine.
8. Think about order and organization. Do you bring home work every day, or mail, or sports equipment? Where will you put it? A large bowl or box near the front door is a great place to drop mail until you go through it later.
9. Take advantage of free expert advice. Every store and every product line employs professional designers to put furniture and accessories together. If you’re unsure of your decorating skills, pick a design you like. Study how they did it either by looking through a catalogue or going to a store. It’s all there assembled and displayed for you. If you like the look, simply do what they’ve done!
Kitchens have evolved a lot over the years. Once found only in the rear of the house, today's kitchen design takes the kitchen out the background. The challenge for kitchen design is in creating a more open-faced kitchen, that is part of a dining area, a family room or a great room.
In deciding on how to design your kitchen, you must take into consideration such things as: will your kitchen have an island? Will it be of a modern or traditional design? What kinds of appliances will you need for your new kitchen design? What kind of lighting design?
1. Kitchen as 'Great Room'
Whether you are redesigning an existing kitchen or planning a new kitchen in a new home there are some design considerations to keep in mind, such as including in an island or peninsula as part of the kitchen design. These can be used to connect the kitchen to a nearby dining area or family room thereby creating a 'great room'. A kitchen island or peninsula will allow the cook to keep in visual and conversational contact with family members or guests in the adjoining family or dining room.
2. Create a Kitchen Canopy
To give the kitchen some visible borders without blocking views create a kitchen canopy. Also a high ceiling in the kitchen can create the perception of spaciousness.
3. Using Kitchen Cabinet Color to Set Tone of Kitchen Design
Kitchen cabinets will help set the tone for the whole room. The choice of wood will influence the overall look of your cabinets. To create a light look, use a light wood such as ash, beech, birch, oak, maple, or chestnut. For medium range, select cherry. To darker kitchens, choose wood that has some color to it.
4. Plan Out Use of Cabinets and Drawers in The New Kitchen Design
Plan out in the kitchen design blueprint just how your cabinets and drawers will be used and how much space and storage you will need before you start your new kitchen design. The first thing to examine is the counter surface area. Look at where you put everything in your existing kitchen and where in your new kitchen design will these things will go in the new space. Will there be more than one person cooking at a time. If so, will there be enough room for two cooks in the kitchen to work together?
5. Use The Galley-Type Kitchen Design
As for counter arrangements, many kitchen designers agree the galley-type design to be the best in terms of efficiency with it's single aisle and counters to either side, making it easy to turn around to go from sink to cooking range.
6. Under-Cabinet Kitchen Lighting
Kitchen lighting can be an overlooked area of kitchen design. Even if the kitchen has generally good lighting, the counter areas can be somewhat dark. For these areas under-cabinet lighting can help provide more light to work in. By using simple spots or fluorescent lights a smaller kitchen can be made to look larger.
7. Looking at Countertops
Granite, marble, and limestone are all popular natural materials for use in countertops are available in many colors. Ceramic tile kitchen countertops are versatile, practical, and also available in many colors, as well as many shapes, patterns, and finishes. Solid surface countertops provide seamless acrylic faces. Solid surfaces also come in almost limitless colors, patterns, and styles, and are stain and heat resistant. Laminate countertops are more affordable but not built to last. Concrete countertops are known for versatility, as well as strength. Wood countertops are long lasting and easy to clean and repair but the wood will not withstand exposure to water and household chemicals. Stainless steel countertops lack the elegance of granite or tile. These countertops do not absorb stains, but tends to scratch easily.
Despite what you may read in the trendiest kitchen design magazines, updating the look of your kitchen really does not require that your spend a lot of time and money. There are some simple and inexpensive ways to give your kitchen a brand new look.
Some small change here and there that you can make in your kitchen can still create a big effect on how your kitchen looks. You can get ideas about what you would like incorporate into your kitchen decorating and remodeling project from books, magazines, and internet sites dealing with kitchen design ideas.
There are 7 relatively low cost kitchen-decorating ideas to create a beautiful kitchen:
1. Replacing the cabinet doors and fronts. Then you can reface the remaining fixtures. This will greatly change the whole look and feel of your kitchen.
2. Painting your cabinets white and changing the hardware, such as knobs, handles, or pulls.
3. Using solid core MFD doors, which are medium density fiberboard or timber. They can be fitted to a solid door base. This type of door can be painted to create any look you may want.
4. Using color to renovate the kitchen is another example of inexpensive kitchen decorating. You can paint your walls and cabinets. When it comes to painting your existing cabinetry, you can use decorative finishes. Some examples are creating a distressed finish to add an aged look, and faux and glazed finishes. These are all simple to do and cost effective.
5. Another area of the kitchen you can easily update is the faucet and sink. It is possible to locate moderately priced sinks that can cost from $50 $300. They are also available in many colors, and styles. Porcelain, stainless steel, and acrylic are the materials that are available for sinks. For faucets, you will find that they are available in many styles and finishes, and depending on the type of faucet can range in price from $50 to$750.
6. Another great affordable idea in kitchen decorating is to add a kitchen island. Kitchen islands are great for adding more counter space to the kitchen and provide a gathering place. If you do not have enough money or space to add a permanent kitchen island, but would like to have the advantages of one, you might consider as an alternative getting a kitchen cart. A kitchen cart can have wheels for rolling around, as well as have drawers, shelves, and places to hang utensils. Because they are on wheels they can be cleared out the way.
7. If your kitchen-decorating budget is so small that you can only afford to remodel a small area of your kitchen you might consider adding a kitchen backsplash. A new kitchen backsplash can really dress up a drab, uninspiring kitchen. Kitchen backsplashes are available in so many different styles, colors, and materials. The materials used for backsplashes can include, wood, porcelain, natural stone, glass, stainless steel, and even wallpaper. The costs vary depending on the material you select.
So you can see that redecorating your kitchen can be a simple thing like changing the hardware on your existing cabinetry or painting the walls. Just one small change can do a lot to make your kitchen look brand new.
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Davidson Calfee is the Owner and President of Operations, overseeing overall portfolio management, agency relations and new business generation. He has a natural ability to manage complex situations and achieve outstanding results for his clients.
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Calfee specializes in developing, designing and implementing complex property catastrophe insurance programs for his clients. His market knowledge and client service skills have made Calfee a sought-after property resource for Massachusetts coastal residents.
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