Monthly Archives:September 2015

5 Ways To Brighten Up Your Bedroom, For Free!

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The bedroom is the place we spend most of our time, yet also tends to be the most neglected when it comes to decorating. Nowadays, money may be a significant factor! Here are some great tips for brightening up your space with no money at all!

1.Rearrange! A new fresh arrangement always makes a room feel new. Don’t be afraid to try new angles for your furniture…place your bed on a diagonal, or even right in the middle of the room!

2. Search your drawers for scarves, tablecloths, or even pillowcases that compliment your color scheme. You can use things you already own to soften a dresser top or the edge of your nightstand, or perhaps lay a pretty shawl over the foot of the bed. If you already have throw pillows on your bed (if you don’t, it’s time to steal them from another room!) you can also wrap these fabrics around the pillows for a new look, and just safety pin it in back.

3. Add a plant to your room. Look around your house to see if one of your existing plants would be happier in your bedroom, then move it there! If you can’t find a plant ready for relocation, make one! Many plants can be grown from cuttings, either your existing houseplants, one a friend may let you cut, or even some outdoor plants. Ivy and many shade groundcovers are very good houseplants. You can even relive your childhood a bit and grow a cut potato, pineapple, or carrot tops in a pinch! For containers, look into your kitchen cupboards. Old teapots and cups, glass bowls, even baking dishes can make unique containers.

4. Add memorabilia to your room. I keep a photo of each one of my children when they were small next to my bedside, and it always makes me smile. How about hanging your wedding veil from the headboard, or framing your wedding invitation or old love letters?

5.Add scent. If you don’t have any potpourri or incense in the house, cut up some orange peels and allow to dry, then mix with whatever sweet spices you have in your cupboard. (It only takes a pinch, try cinnamon, ginger, or allspice.) Place your potpourri in an open bowl in your room to freshen and inspire! Later in the summer, make sure to include flowers in your room, if you don’t have roses or other scented flowers in your yard, roadside daisies can smell great too!

Just a few small changes, no money involved, and a better, more positive place for you to start and end each day!


7 Materials For Creating The Perfect Kitchen Countertop

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The kitchen countertop has to be able to take a lot of abuse including the heat of pots, cutting and knives and abrasive cleansers. The ideal countertop should be able to stand up to heat and the sharp edge of a knife.

Let us take a look at 7 of the most popular kitchen countertop materials being used today:

Granite – A natural stone, granite is a popular choice for it’s classic beauty and durability. Granite is the hardest and densest of the natural stones. It can create a kitchen countertop that is extremely scratch resistant and can keep its luster longer than most materials. granite slabs are the most expensive of all kitchen countertop surfaces, although it is still considered a very practical material in that it is virtually indestructible.

Marble Another natural stone, marble is considered to be the height of elegance and will last longer than most kitchens. It is however, is very expensive and requires some care: acidic foods such as orange juice will etch the finished surface of a marble kitchen countertop.

Slate Because of it richness and beauty slate is usually used in interior applications such as kitchen countertops, bathroom sinks or fireplace surrounds. It can be used in either modern or traditional kitchens as well as in combination with marble. Slate is durable, strong, and can withstand hard use. It is less expensive than marble

Concrete This is one of the biggest trends in kitchen countertops today. It is a good look for clean, industrial and contemporary kitchen designs. Available in pre formed sections or poured and formed on-site. Concrete is a good material for unusually shaped counters. Concrete kitchen countertopsare expensive, require a sealant and must be treated with care. The countertop can crack if the concrete should contract. Concrete can be stained any color. The most popular color is a natural gray tone. The top layer can be finished as desired.

Corian A solid surface material that first became popular in the 1990’s It is highly recommended by kitchen countertop experts. It is a totally manmade product and is not porous. As a solid surface it can easily be repaired if scratched or burned.

Stainless Steel Advantages include very hygienic, easy to clean, has ability to stand up to exteme wear and heat. Stainless steel can provide a great look for an ultra modern kitchen. Some disadvantages with stainless is that it can be noisy and that scratches can develop.

Tile Tile surfaces can be tough, hard-wearing, takes hot pans, heat and stain resistant as well as beautiful. There are many types of tiles including ceramic, porcelain, quarry, glass, natural stone and mosiac. Available in many colors, sizes and textures. It has good design flexibility. Tile can often be used for trim or backsplashes. The downside of tile is that the grouts can be easily stained. Also the tiles can become chipped or cracked.


5 Popular Kitchen Designs

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5 Popular Kitchen Designs

The kitchen is one of the most used areas in your house. To avoid frustration you need to spend some quality time in the design of your new kitchen to ensure it fully meets your needs.  If you are looking to install a new kitchen into your home then you will find that there is a bewildering choice of free kitchen design ideas you could choose from to feed your own design plans.

Together with the bathroom the kitchen is the most important room in the house to get right in design terms. Aside from the hall the kitchen receives the highest amount of foot traffic in the home. Most people spend a lot of time in the kitchen, especially families and if something is not right it will bug you every time you look at it.

I recommend you spend considerable time looking for free kitchen design ideas before you approach a kitchen design contractor or store. That way you will have a much more focused idea of what you are looking

for and are more likely to encourage the salesperson to offer you a special deal. They will see you as a serious prospect who has spent time creating a strong vision and knows what they require.  Design ideas can be found in many places such as house and home magazines, kitchen showrooms, diy stores, kitchen web sites and friends’ houses.

You should be able to formulate at least two or three design ideas using these methods.

In the meantime here is a list of 5 popular kitchen styles that you can investigate to get you started:

Country Style kitchen

This style is also called early american or colonial and creates a lovely quaint farm kitchen look.  Typically the kitchen will feature open shelves, pot racks and a general feeling of being well lived in, accented by the various color schemes of the cabinetry.

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More pictures of country kitchen style kitchen remodels.

Contemporary kitchen style

This style has clean and simple lines. Cabinets are usually futuristic in look with no carvings or particularly ornate features.  The emphasis is on style and practical sophistication.

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More pictures of  contemporary kitchen style kitchen remodels.

Shaker kitchen style

This is a simple and utilitarian style that features flat panel doors, wooden countertops and brass hardware.

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More pictures of  shaker style kitchen remodels.

French Country kitchen style

French Country kitchens are known to be warm inviting kitchens full of wood and soft colors. Natural materials feature strongly as do large furniture pieces with ornate carvings.

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More pictures of French country kitchen style kitchen remodels.

Arts and Crafts style kitchen

This is becoming a popular style and features glass doors and natural wood tones that are finished in a matte sheen. This style can be very artistic. Finally, take into account the themes you have used in other rooms to ensure that the kitchen design you finally choose fits well into your overall scheme.

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More pictures of  arts and crafts kitchen style kitchen remodels.




Vinyl Siding – all you need to know

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Vinyl Siding is an excellent way to spruce up your home’s exterior.

Vinyl Siding is an excellent way to spruce up your home’s exterior, and this easy home improvement can dramatically increase the value of your home.  Vinyl siding is often a great option for a variety of reasons. Exterior siding generally has a high curb appeal, does not require painting or repainting and you get a consistent color and look for your home. Siding is very durable. It is impervious to water.  Vinyl siding waterproofs the home and saves you the hassle of having to worry about water damage and checking for leaks.

Vinyl siding is a great value.

Vinyl siding is one the best investments that you can make improving your home.  According to Remodeling magazine, homeowners increase the value of their home by about 95% of the cost of the vinyl siding when they install new vinyl siding on their home.  Costs for vinyl siding can vary depending on the brand, style, and color of the siding that is chosen so that will certainly impact the value increase.

Vinyl siding is energy efficient saving you money.

Properly installed vinyl siding is an excellent insulator to keep your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter.  This often means lower heating bills in the winter and lower cooling bills in the summer.  It is estimated that vinyl siding could save a homeowner hundreds of dollars in energy bills over the life of the product.  Some manufacturers even state that vinyl siding can save you up to 20 percent off your home heating and cooling costs.

Vinyl siding is easy to maintain.

Siding is basically maintenance free.  Once it is installed, you do not need to do touch ups or make any special arrangements for hot or cold weather.  Keeping your siding clean is as easy as washing it down with water at a high pressure.  While you paint may fade, vinyl siding is fade resistant, requiring less maintenance on your part and an overall better look for your home. Vinyl siding also will not rot, peel, dent, or show scratches which means that you can enjoy a bright, clean-looking exterior every day for years. If it does get a bit dirty, you can power wash it with soap and water, a very easy and inexpensive process when compared to special treatments required for some other exteriors.

Vinyl siding matches your aesthetics and enhance your home

There are a huge variety of styles and colors to choose from in vinyl siding. Some sidings are bold and modern; others can make your home look authentically original with heritage designs that emulate old-style wood paneling. Siding also comes in as wide a range of colors as you can imagine, which means that you can give your home a totally new distinctive look, or simply restore some of its old charm.

Vinyl siding increases your home’s curb appeal

Installing vinyl siding is a home improvement project that can really add value to your home. Because buyers need not worry about maintenance, cracking stucco, rotting wood, or any of the other hassles that come with alternative products, they are more likely to buy a home with vinyl siding. Many buyers specify that they want a home with vinyl siding when they are house-hunting, so installing vinyl siding can also give you an edge in the market.

Vinyl siding comes with valuable warranties

Not only does vinyl siding bring with it all these benefits, but many manufacturers of vinyl siding will also offer a lifetime warranty on their product. Vinyl siding is so durable and easy to maintain, and manufacturers so sure of their product, that they offer replacements for any defects over the lifetime of the siding. This is an impressive commitment that shows the level of quality and performance you can expect from your vinyl siding.

Vinyl siding creates a clean finish that works well with any style of home. You can save money, time and hassle over a lifetime.