Friday, November 29, 2013

Stylish Tiles

When it comes to decorating your home one of the first things you should think about is floor tiles, and this is especially true for the kitchen and bathroom areas. Many people will have floor tiles in other areas of the home as well, and this is not a surprise as they can look great and also are very easy to clean and maintain too. They will play a huge role in the establishing of style and color in your home, so you will want to have a good think about the sort of style you want to incorporate before purchasing your floor tiles.

There are also all kinds of tile materials to consider as well, and this includes ceramic, glass, marble, metal, porcelain, slate, stone and then a range of finishes to think about on top of this too. I would say that generally you should not mix your styles and materials too much throughout the house, and it can look a lot smarter and professional to have one particular style throughout. The bathroom however is generally one where people will go for a clean, white look, and this is a classic bathroom style which always looks good. In the kitchen and other areas in the home might be better to go with something a bit different, and you can get really creative with different colors and laying patterns too, and this will help to create a unique and stylish look in your home.

 Finding High Quality, Affordable Tiles

To view the best selection it is worthwhile visiting a tile specialist, and this way you know that you will be getting the best quality too. It is important that the quality is high so that you know the tiles will last, and otherwise they may start to crack and deteriorate over time. You will also want to save money without compromising on quality, and this is why your best bet is to find somewhere like Tiles 4 All, where you can compare on prices and find the best deals.

Once you have found the right style, finish and material then it won’t be long until they have been laid, and you will love the smart and clean look that having floor tiles bring to your home, and with the right interior decoration it can really look very professional, and this is sure to impress any visitors you have round.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Create Your Own Masterpiece with Home Lighting

Good lighting is something that the vast majority of us take for granted. But you can rest assured that we'll always notice when it isn't there. Have you ever stared in wonderment at the breathtaking cinematography of Citizen Kane, Apocalypse Now, Casablanca or indeed any of the great films of the past century? Have you ever asked yourself why these films look so good, so aesthetically pleasing? Believe it or not, a large part of this is down to lighting. This is because lighting isn't simply about making things visible, it is about bringing a space to life through the intentional development of mood and atmosphere. So like the great filmmakers themselves, learn these essential techniques and make the canvas of your own home a picture to behold.

Keep it Natural

There can be no perfect substitute for the warm glow of natural light, and it should be your main source of light if possible. Of course in the Northern hemisphere, natural light is not always as plentiful as you might like. Try to allow more into your home by trimming any bushes outside your windows. Another little cheat is to use mirrors to reflect light around the room, just like in the movies!

Create Ambience
The chances are that – even if you do employ a few tricks – natural light will not be sufficient, unless of course you want to build a drab and flat aesthetic! Ambient lighting is all about compensating for the lack of natural light, without being too overbearing. Think of it as trying to create the most pleasing and natural look through artificial means. Uplighters, downlighters and wall lights will be your best friends in this department.

Accent Lighting to Finish

Provided you have effective natural and ambient light in place, accent lighting will then allow you to truly define the mood and character of your home, creating texture, focus and atmosphere. This is where you create your own Citizen Kane! Use a number of different lights here (such as halogen spotlights, tracks and downlighters) to add depth and shade to your lighting scheme. Cast shadows into some corners, whilst sending bright pools of light into others. You can highlight paintings or objects of prominence, drawing your guests in through a thoughtful, motivated and aesthetically pleasing lighting setup.

Quality Is Essential

Professional film lighting experts wouldn't be caught dead using inferior equipment. So nor should you settle for substandard bulbs when lighting your home. For the best quality long-lasting bulbs, visit Scotlight Direct and start building your own masterpiece.


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

It's the Small Things...

When it comes to having a well decorated home I believe that it is all about the small details, and there is something that a huge amount of people overlook when they are decorating their home. This is the doors and the door handles, and I think that these need to be looking their best, as doors are generally the first thing people will look for when they are inside, and there are plenty of ways in which you can do this. This also includes your front and back doors, as well as all of the ones inside too. A plain, boring door can be made an interesting piece of your home with the simple addition of some nice handles, locks and hinges, and this can also include your cabinet drawers also.


The front door is the one that you can do the most with, and this is also perhaps the most important door as it will be introducing people to your home, so you will want to start off strong. This can be done with stylish letterboxes, door knockers, door numbers, a bell, locks and much more. Once you begin on the inside doors I think it is important that you pick one style and then stick with it, as it will look unprofessional if you were to have stylish door handles on half the doors and door knobs on the other half, so find a style that you like and one that fits with the interior design style and stick with that.

Finding High Quality Door Accessories

The place to go for the most stylish handles, hinges, locks, bells and other door furniture will be a specialist, like Handlestore, and specialists like this always have a great selection to choose from. It is amazing how many people overlook this element of interior decorating, and if it is done with good taste then it can really improve the overall look and feel of any home. Another benefit of buying high quality handles, locks and more is that you know that they will be sturdy and last you a lifetime, and of course the safety and security that this quality brings is invaluable too. So, if you are looking to add a bit more style and character to your home then turn your attention to the doors, and there is a huge amount you could do to spruce them and complete your houses look.

Monday, November 25, 2013

How to Add Character, Personality and Warmth to Your Home

In my opinion no home is complete without a fireplace, and there is nothing like starting one up on a colder winter evening and relaxing in front of it with the television on. As well as the practical benefits of having a fire place, they can also really add some personality and character into your home, and there are all kinds of beautiful ones for you to consider as well. There is a huge range of styles of fireplace that you could opt for, and it will all really depend on the interior design style that you have in your home as to which one you should pick.

So if you feel that you want to add some warmth and character into your home then a fireplace is the best way to do this, and once you have it set up then I’m sure you will be eager to get it up and running most nights and make the most of it. There are natural limestone fireplaces, sandstone fireplaces, hole in the wall fireplaces, electric fireplaces, electric and gas stoves, natural stone hearths and plenty more for you to consider. It is not just fireplaces inside for you to consider either, it can be very enjoyable to sit outside with a fire too, and you can do this in your home with chimeneas, fire pits, wood stoves and more.

Where to Turn for the Best Fireplace Products

Whatever the fireplace product is that you are after you will want to visit a fireplace specialist, as this way you know that you will have the widest range of top quality items to choose from. Places such as Fireplace Products will carry everything that you are looking for whether it is a stove, indoor fireplace, BBQ or any accessories that you need to get your fire started and keep it running.

Fireplaces are often an overlooked home product, but with the right one installed it can really add some character and life into a room, and of course the added warmth is always a bonus in the cold, winter nights too. Having the right fireplace installed will help your house to become a home, and you should easily be able to find an elegant and stylish one that is in tune with the interior design style that you have in your home.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

MCM Eiffel Chairs

I've had my eye on some MCM chairs for quite some time and I ran across these on I knew that I had to get my hands on these immediately.  When I love something I just go with my gut, and my gut was screaming GET THEM!  I didn't even consult with the hubs on this one, so you know it was a must. 

I was planning to use them at the head of our dining room table and of course I found some inspiration pictures...


Mixing chairs is perfectly imperfect and I love it!


Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Cut it Out! How to Hardwire a Plug-In Fixture

I'd like to start out by saying my husband did not want me to share this post because he said this could be dangerous.  Well I think that most of us DIY'ers live for!

I found this awesome fixture at Target a few weeks ago for just $22 and scooped it up immediately.  But to my surprise it was a plug-in fixture.  Why did I think it was hardwired?  I was going to return it and then I had a thought.  This is what we do, we DIY any and every thing so why is this one any different?

We put on our electrical hats and went to work.  Mind you I work for a construction firm and I have plenty of guys that could take care of this for us, but heck we could do this! And we DID!

We had an existing fixture that had good bones, but the cage is what I really wanted and I couldn't remove it from the plug-in fixture so that's the reason for the conversion.

The parts from the original fixture were chrome, so I found some Rustoleum Oil Rubbed Bronze spray paint that matched the fixture and went to work.

I used a wooden dowel to hold the rod upright for paint.

After all of the paint was complete we were ready for the hard part.

** Safety first!**

Turn the circuit breaker off to the light switch in question before attempting any electrical work.

Cut the cord!  Nothing is better than cutting through a brand new light fixture.  There's no turning back after that!

The cord is usually made up of two wires joined together, so simply pull the two pieces apart at the top.  Use a wire stripper to strip the insulating coating to reveal about 1/2″ to 1″ of copper wire on the inside.

After removing the existing light fixture, it was time to wire up the plug-in fixture.  The ribbed lamp wire combines with the white house wire with the two copper sections touching.  Using a wire nut, screw the nut onto the end completely covering the copper portions of the wire.  Repeat the same steps with the green ground wire to the bare brass/copper-colored wire as well as the smooth lamp wire with the black house wire.
Before we put everything back together we inserted a light bulb and tested it to see if our electrical work was a worked.  We have light!!

This was super simple.  I will no longer pass up an awesome plug-in fixture when I see one.  They also tend to be cheaper and that's always a plus!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Guest Post: Winter Warmers That Won't Break the Bank

Gloomy skies, cold winds, dark mornings. Yep, winter is on the way again. And with 2013 promising to be the coldest winter for many years, no doubt you will be looking for effective ways to stave off the chill. But there's also another concern for most families today: money. It's safe to say that these are difficult times financially, and having the central heating on full blast or running two convection heaters just to keep your toes from freezing off clearly isn't good economics. No, in the current climate, both physical and economic, austerity for most is not a choice but a necessity. If you find yourself in such a position, try implementing some of these money saving winter warmers.


Almost two thirds of all heat in the home is lost through the walls and roof. By ensuring that your home is properly fitted with good quality insulation, all that heat won't go to waste. It's all very well having a great Glowing Embers wood burning stove with a twin wall insulated chimney system, but if most of the heat you're generating is literally disappearing into thin air, it defeats its purpose. Whilst the initial outlay for insulation can be relatively substantial, the overall savings on your heating bill will more than justify the investment.

Boiler Care

Before the cold weather hits, be sure to get your boiler serviced. If your boiler isn't running at peak efficiency, then you aren't getting the most from it. Also, purchasing a hot water tank jacket can be a sound and very inexpensive investment. These great little devices cost next to nothing from Amazon, and will ensure that your boiler water remains constantly hot.

Windows and Draughts

If your home is a few years old, the chances are that hot air may be escaping through small cracks or gaps around the windows. A good way to check is to light an incense stick around the supposed area, and see if any smoke escapes. If it does, you should either seal the gaps or, if you can afford it, consider installing double glazed windows. These not only keep the noise out, but are just as effective where weather is concerned!

Keep the Heat Up and the Bills Down

Essentially, if you try to keep all of your heating appliances running to optimum capacity and reduce the ways in which heat is escaping from your home, you simply won't have to have your heating on as much, which will save you considerably over the chilly months of winter.

This post was brought to you by Daniel Evans, a part-time lecturer at Freedomfields College and has written extensively about home economy in the digital age. He occasionally writes feature articles for various web based heating companies.