Sunday, 23 October 2011

Curvaceous Kitchens!

I wanted to do my kitchen up recently but this is one area of my house that I have shamefully neglected, so I wasn’t fully clued-up on what I would like; the kitchen doors I wanted, the surfaces, even the colour! A quick online search led me to an awesome looking design though that I immediately knew I wanted!

It’s all about curves! Curved little kitchen islands, curvaceous kitchen doors and smooth, round edges where ones where harsh little corners. I loved the look of this little bubbly-kitchen idea, so took it upon myself to investigate exactly how to achieve this look. I started my search by typing “curved kitchen” into a search engine and absolutely loved the outcome! Curvy little kitchens can be done in all types of typical kitchen materials – from the ultra-modern high-gloss shiny cabinets and kitchen doors to the gorgeous wood doors. I loved the way that these kitchens seemed to flow and put me in mind of softness, comfort and luxury! Combined with a really soft, floral wallpaper and opulent, poufy cushions for my kitchen chairs, my kitchen now looks like a little, white cloud of a haven!

It’s not just all sweetness, girly and light though. If you fancy a kitchen with curves to rival Nigella Lawson you don’t have to have a girly haven – opt for heavy wood kitchen doors in a slightly darker shade or even black ultra-gloss to give your kitchen a bachelor-pad feel. And of course, forego the flowery wallpaper!

Monday, 10 October 2011

Choose An Oak Console Table To Reinstate Your Living Room

Only a few short years ago most people had telephone tables in their hallway which meant that every time there was a phone call your home had a designated space for taking it. Nowadays with the popularity of mobile phones and landline phones which can be carried around the home, often time taking phone calls seems to encroach on creating a happy and relaxed family environment.

If you’re fed up with teenagers or other family members taking or making calls in your living space there is a quick and simple solution.
If you purchase an oak console table it can easily be placed in a hallway or box room and house your telephone, meaning that phone calls coming in or going out will no longer encroach on your space.

You can say goodbye to disturbances when you’re watching your favourite programme and your teen decides that they must make that all important phone call.
Dinner time can be dinner time again as your dining space won’t be invaded by ringing phones, so you can have better quality time with your family.
There’s a lot to be said for the old tradition of keeping your phone separate from your living space, especially these days when we use technology so much. Particularly when you consider that most of the technology we use only serves to make us more solitary.

Most parents would agree that technology can make it harder to spend quality time with your family. That’s why it’s a good idea to have rules about what happens in different spaces in your home.

When you purchase an oak console table for your hallway then you and your family can all agree that family living spaces are for spending time together, rather than everyone doing their own thing and any telephone conversations can be kept away from the living areas of your home.

If you’re simply looking at ways to save space then an oak console table could be the perfect solution. Console tables are more slimline than conventional tables meaning that they can fit snugly into a small space without encroaching too much on the surroundings. That means they’re ideal for small bedrooms, bathrooms, studies or box rooms. They also work well near front doors as they can be used to store post or other important papers and are an ideal place to pop your keys when you come in.

So reinstate to your living room and encourage your family to spend more time together simply get yourself an oak console table from Cambridge Oak

Friday, 7 October 2011

How To Add Interest To A Neutral Decor

Everyone knows that it’s the finishing touches that make a home feel like a home. That’s why it’s so important to get your home accessories right.

The objects and ornaments that you keep around you say a lot about who you are, so if you truly want to express yourself through your decor then it’s a good idea to put some thought into the things you choose to surround you.
Many people these days choose to decorate their homes as a blank canvas, which is a great move if you plan to sell your property as most people prefer homes that they can imagine their own belongings in.

However, a blank canvas can be a bit boring when you are living in it every day, but it’s easy to put your stamp on your home and keep the decor neutral by choosing clever accessories.

Choose Accent Colours

One way to do it is to decide on two or three accent colours for your home and keep within those colours when buying accessories. This doesn’t mean that if you choose blue as one of your colours all your accessories need to be exactly the same shade of blue. You can keep within the colour palette but choose blues of different shades to add variety.

A great way to add colour is through items such as cushions, curtains and rugs. These can be relatively inexpensive which means you can change them as often as you want to give your home a new feel. Many people who do this choose to change their curtains or cushions with the seasons. This is a great idea as you can use warmer colours during the winter to give your home a cosier feel and choose lighter colours in the summer for a more airy atmosphere.

Express Yourself

If you’re a fan of bold, modern design then let your home reflect it. Choose modernist prints and sharp, primary coloured accessories to really set your rooms off. If you prefer a more romantic style then fill your home with gorgeous antiques, crystal and cut glass. There’s no reason not to surround yourself with the things that you love.

Change The Atmosphere

You can completely change the atmosphere in the rooms of your home just by adjusting the lighting. If you really want to make an impact you could fit coloured lighting strips around the tops or bottoms of your kitchen units, or replace your light fittings with dimmer switches. For a cheaper and quicker effect try scattering tealights in gorgeous tealight holders around a room. When lit they give a truly magical feel and will almost make your room feel like a completely different space.
However you decide to dress up your neutral decor, remember your home is an extension of your personality, so have fun, experiment and give yourself a treat by filling your home with items that you love.

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Creating A Relaxing Bedroom Environment With The Right Bedding

Whilst there are those of us that are fortunate enough to enjoy a sound sleep most nights; many often find that their sleeping pattern is interrupted or struggle to drop off. The stresses of modern day life mean that it can be difficult to switch off at the end of the day and we can wake up in the morning feeling more tired than we did the night before. In order to improve your sleeping pattern it is a good idea to try and create a serene environment within your bedroom and your bedding selection can go a long way towards achieving that aim.

An uncomplicated design

In the world of children’s bedding we see many crazy patterns that are designed to draw their attention and spark their imagination. As most children don’t have any worries to keep them awake at night their bed linen can be as busy as it gets without having a detrimental effect. However, adults are much better advised to go for something a little simpler. It is a good idea to go for bedding that is either one colour, or that has two different colours on opposing sides.

If you are keen to add some element of design to the bedding then a wise choice is to try and incorporate some nature, which the human mind instinctively associates with calmness and serenity. Floral bedding remains a firm favourite as do designs involving trees.

For something a little less traditional there is always the option of bed linen that depicts flowing water in the form of rivers or waterfalls. Whichever pattern you do decide on; make sure that it isn’t too busy.

Selecting the colour

Many of the different shades of colour are associated with emotions dependant on the society in which we live. For example; most Western cultures associate the colour red with love, passion and anger.

Research has demonstrated that just seeing the colour red can have a physical impact on the human body and serve to increase your heart rate and blood pressure. Whilst this might make the right bedding colour for some situations; it’s probably not the wisest choice when you are looking for a restful night. Again your best option is to go for tones that are intrinsically linked with nature, such as browns, beiges and greens. Pastel yellows, blues and pinks will also create a soothing vibe.

Quality materials

We all like to make a good saving and it can be tempting to go for cheap bedding options. However, you really do get what you pay for with bedding materials and it is worth paying that little bit extra to get superior products. Whether you are going for cotton, silk or satin bedding sets or Egyptian cotton bed linen; a higher quality material will feel much smoother against your skin and provide a relaxing comfort.

Having the right bedding really can play a huge role in securing a good night’s sleep, which can have a real impact on your energy levels and productivity throughout the day. When you consider that we tend to spend around a third of our lives in bed; paying a few extra pounds to get quality items really isn’t a big deal.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Top Tips for Updating Your Bathroom

When was the last time you spruced up your bathroom? I’m not referring to paint, or tiles, but to the bathroom fixtures themselves. What sort of work did you have done? Getting a bathroom re-fitted can be a lot of hassle. For the duration of the job your plumbing is off, and you don’t have access to your washing and toilet facilities.

If you have more than one bathroom, that’s not too much hassle, but if your home has only one bathroom, it can be a less than appealing proposition. That’s where bath repairs such as bath resurfacing come in. If you pick a company that specialises in bath repairs to do the work for you,
bath resurfacing can offer you a “good as new” bathtub for a fraction of the cost of a high quality replacement.

Save time and hassle

If your existing bath is serviceable, but has scratches, cracks, or pit-marks that make it look scruffy, then why not get it repaired instead of shelling out for an entire replacement. You can breathe new life into all but the most damaged of tubs through bath repairs, and the process is far less intrusive than getting a replacement fitted.
Shower Tray Before
Shower Tray After

DIY or professional?

It’s possible to purchase bath resurfacing kits online, and while these can do the job well enough, they can be difficult to use. The chemicals used in those kits are incredibly strong, and can be dangerous if handled incorrectly. If you aren’t used to working with such chemicals, and have never tried to do your own resurfacing before, then it’s probably not a good idea to make re-doing your bathroom your first DIY experience.

Professional companies that specialise in bath repairs have access to better equipment, and more experience in performing even difficult bath resurfacing jobs. When you get the treatment done by a professional, they will guarantee the work, so you have some recourse if the new surface cracks, flakes, or peels after a few uses.

When is replacement better?

Bath resurfacing is not always a good idea. If your tub is a fairly new and inexpensive one, and you plan on getting a similar replacement, then you may find that replacing it would be less expensive than getting your existing one repaired. Resurfacing is best for high quality and antique tubs which may be irreplaceable.
Most jobs can be done on site, but some companies recommend sending tubs away for more sophisticated treatment. This does have the drawback of taking longer, and being more intrusive to your daily routine – since you’ll be without access to your bathtub for a while – but the treatment can restore even cast iron tubs to their original glory.

Once you’ve got your bath sorted out, don’t forget to pay a little attention to the rest of the room, simple jobs such as replacing taps, or changing the toilet seat, will all go a long way towards making your bathroom look as shiny, new, and inviting as the ones you see in top class hotels.
This post was written by James Harper on behalf of Hometech. James writes on the subject of home improvement and DIY.

Monday, 3 October 2011

Are You Planning a Loft Conversion?

More and more homeowners are choosing to stay in their current homes and invest in a loft conversion, rather than moving home and paying for all the extra expenses that moving entails. This should come as no surprise – there are many benefits to loft conversions. Birmingham, and other major cities, feature competitive housing markets, and persuading buyers to take an interest in your home can be difficult.

Loft conversions are a good compromise for a growing family. They allow you to expand your home without spending a lot of money. The cheapest loft conversions can be a tenth of the cost of even a small flat, and for that price you get the convenience of staying in your own home, the utility of extra space, and the value of an investment that should increase your home’s value, should you decide to sell in the future.

While you’re getting the loft conversion work done, you can also take the opportunity to get other minor improvements carried out, such as upgrades to your heating system, or some extra loft insulation added. There are many great loft insulation offers online.

Things to consider before commencing work

Before you sign off on any loft conversion work, it’s a good idea to make sure that you’re well versed in all of the legal considerations. If you’re a leaseholder, and you want a loft conversion for an upper floor flat, then you will need to get permission from the person who owns the freehold. If you live in a terraced or semi-detached property, then you may need to consult your neighbours before you start work – especially if the work will involve touching any shared walls.

Insurance is another important consideration. You may want to invest in an insurance backed warranty, so that your home is covered not just for the duration of building work itself, but for any loft conversion related problems that you encounter over the next ten years.

When you go looking for a company to perform loft conversions in Staffordshire or your local area, make sure that you ask about their credentials, and also ask to speak to satisfied customers. Don’t just read testimonials on their websites – ask to speak to some customers in person. Any reputable company will be happy to put you in touch with some previous customers, and a face to face conversation (or a telephone conversation if you prefer) will give you a much more realistic view of the company, the builders, and the quality of their work, than some carefully edited text on a website.

Loft conversions require a lot of planning and paperwork, and the building process can be a little stressful, but it’s far less hassle than moving house, and works out less expensive in the long run too. Even something as simple as choosing loft ladders UK or the right sort of timber windows can be a complicated matter if you are unsure of what you are doing. If your family is growing, and you feel like you need more space, then a loft conversion is a great way to give yourself and your family the breathing space that you require, without having to uproot and move away from your much loved family home.

This post was written by James Harper on behalf of Buckley Loft Conversions, for expert loft conversions Staffordshire and loft conversions Birmingham. James writes on subjects relating to home improvements.