Tag Archives: home improvements

Interior Design Ideas For Your New Home

A friend of mine has always dreamed of designing his own home and now that he has acquired a nice piece of land, he is having lots of ideas in his head concerning the designs of his new home and also how the interior designs would be like. Every night after dinner, he will be on the drawing board putting the ideas down on paper. It is easy to just sketch out what you want your house to look like but we will need the architects and the civil engineers to make your house practical and safe for you to stay in.

While designing the layout plan of the house, this friend has more or less visualized how the interior would look like. But the final decision will be reached after consulting his wife. He will leave the children to choose the design for their own rooms.

Now that the house is in the midst of construction and everything is going smoothly and on schedule, it is time for them to look into the interior designs for their house. Looking through magazines, visiting showrooms, and furniture stores are some of their weekend activities as a family.

The man was quite impressed with the some of the ideas he found on one of the Los Angeles interior designer’s website. Since the living room is a common room for the whole family, the design must be well received. He will have the say over his study room, the kids will pick the design for their own bedroom, and the kitchen will be the wife’s choice. The remaining rooms of the house will be the joint decision of husband and wife.

Every idea will be presented to the family. The guideline is to keep it simple and practical for a comfortable home. Views and suggestions were given and taken seriously. Once the work is done, you will be stuck with the design. And also the budget has to be considered.

Consulting one of the Beverly Hills interior design firm for professional tips and quotation will be the next step. These professionals will help you with the right colours for the wall of the different rooms and placing of lightings in each rooms, etc. Some are just hopeless with interior designing, even for their own room. If that is the case, then let the interior designers come up with their ideas depending on your style and requirements.

A Familiar Problem: Don’t Make These Classic DIY Errors

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Having a DIY disaster might be something you can laugh about later when you look back at what happened, but it doesn’t seem that funny at the time when water is pouring everywhere or you have inflicted damage on something you intended to repair.

Here is a look at some of the regular rookie DIY errors that you might just be able to avoid once you know what to look out for and accept that your skills have limitations.

Water everywhere

Some of the worst DIY disasters involve water escaping into your property as a result of a plumbing job gone wrong or when you unintentionally damage a water pipe.

If you want to avoid this nightmare scenario always take a step back before you start drilling or banging nails into a wall or floor and consider whether there might be a water pipe lurking behind the surface.

Once you drill into that pipe it is going to be carnage, so invest in a wire and pipe detector so that you can get a clear idea of whether you can drill and make holes safely without damaging any pipework or electrical cables.

You can get tools like that here and for a modest investment in something like a detector you can save a whole lot of aggravation and money.

Fixture fails

Even the simplest of jobs can go wrong if you don’t use the right tools and fixings.

A good example would be when you decide to put up some shelves or hang something on the wall like a mirror. The act of fitting the item to the wall shouldn’t be too challenging in itself but a classic error is not using the right length or style of fitting.

Always consider your options carefully and work out the correct length of screw and fitting that you need to insert in the wall in order to hold your item in place and cope with the weight.

A cabinet or mirror falling off your wall can be frustrating as well as damaging and dangerous, so follow the manufacturer’s guidelines or check with someone who knows if you are not sure what fixtures you need to use to do the job properly and successfully.

A false economy

There are countless DIY jobs you can manage by yourself but it is always advisable to know your limits and accept when it might be time to call upon the services of a professional.

If you bite off more than you chew and end up making a mess of your DIY job it could end up costing you more than if you called for help in the first place. Think carefully and honestly about what your limitations are or you could be putting yourself and your home at risk if something goes wrong or isn’t done right.

Major plumbing and electrical work are definite examples of jobs that you might not be qualified to tackle yourself, but with minor repairs and decorating projects, you should be able to get the job done if you have the right tools and avoid some of the classic and avoidable DIY errors.

How To Choose the Right Plumber

If you need a plumber, time is usually of the essence. You do not really want to endure days upon days with plugging that does not work or water that leaks in the most inopportune of places. While many homeowners try to do the job on their own, this is not usually the prudent way to go about it, as more harm than good can be done. For this reason alone, it is best to contact a professional Atlanta plumber to come in and save the day. That being said, there are some factors to consider when choosing the best plumbing for you and your situation.

Expect Great Customer Service

You can learn a great deal about a plumber by the way his or her office treats you when you contact them. You should expect great customer service, as this will speak to how you will be treated should you select them to perform the needed repairs at your home. This means that your plumber should be courteous and respectful when you contact them on the phone. You should also expect a swift response to any emails that you have, especially if you have asked a question or voiced a concern.

Timeliness of the Response

You should know what to expect your plumber and they should honor that commitment to you. It is quite possible that you have taken off work to be at home when the plumber arrives. Your time is valuable, and a professional plumber should understand that. If your plumber keeps changing the time of arrival on you, or they do not show up altogether, it might be time to consider someone else.

Professionalism Matters

Plumbing is a profession. Sure, you plumber is not going to show up at your home or office in a suit and tie, nor would you want them to. At the same time, they should conduct themselves with professionalism at all times. You should expect them to clean up after they are finished, speak to respectfully in your home at all times, and in general just to respect the sanctity of your home. A professional plumber is one who will treat your home like theirs with each and every service call that they make.

Plumbers can truly save the day if they are good and experienced. This is what you are looking for. You will want to take some time and conduct your own research before deciding on the individual that you ultimately choose to invite into your own home. This will help you in the long run, and it could lead to a long and prosperous relationship for the both of you in the end.

How to Create the Perfect Outdoor Hot Tub Space

It used to be common place that your hot tub would sit in a sheltered area of your garden, perhaps on a patio or decking. Add a couple of garden lights and you were ready to indulge in a dip. However, garden design trends have come on leaps and bounds and people are wanting to create an experience around their hot tub.

The outdoor room is a popular trend that enhances the area around your hot tub to create the perfect area for relaxation and entertainment. If you want to find out how to create a hot tub haven to escape to, keep on reading.

Let’s Get Started

The process of creating your perfect hot tub space can be broke down into manageable chunks. Initially, you will want to determine the best place to create the space; you will need a solid foundation and safe electrical connections.

Next, if you haven’t received your hot tub yet, have a look online to get its measurements. You will want to make sure the tub fits in the desired place. When measuring a prospective area for your hot tub and outdoor room, remember to take into account any design features you want to include.

Once the previous steps have been achieved, you can get to work on your dream space! However, if you don’t have the time to be erecting different out door room features, there are a number of pre-made garden buildings on the market to house or partially cover your hot tub. You can then add lights and furnishings to make the outdoor space your own.

Simple Outdoor Options

If you have your heart set on creating your outdoor space from scratch, there are a number of simple design options that can pack a punch. Laying down new decking or paving can completely transform your hot tub’s outdoor space. Alternatively, you could paint your fence a vibrant colour, or encourage climbing plants to grow up walls and trellises around your tub. Simply adding some comfy chairs, fairy lights, and a chimenea around your hot tub can create a wonderful effect. You could also turn your outdoor space into an entertainment area, with a BBQ and bar!

Things to Remember

If you have the money, it can be worthwhile utilising the expertise of a landscape gardener if you want to create drastic changes for your outdoor room. However, you will need to be very specific about the work you want done, so that it reflects your personal style.

Whether you want a Moroccan themed space, a nautical themed space, or minimalist Swedish look, make sure your plans reflect your style. Below are five design tips to remember when planning your outdoor room and hot tub area:

  1. Accessories are a must when it comes to giving your outdoor space the right ambience. If it will be a quiet space just for the family, a barbeque, minifridge, and solar powered lights will add a cosy feel. Plan on entertaining? Pop in bar, with obligatory stools, and an outdoor stereo system. Perhaps even some disco lights!
  2. You will definitely need a solid foundation for your outdoor room, especially considering the positioning of a hot tub. Paving and decking are both great options, but there is no reason why one side cannot be edged by a lawn if it fits in with your design plans.
  3. Like any room, lighting can make or break a space. Fairy lights, softer bulbs, and subdued lighting can create an intimate and tranquil outdoor room. Colourful, bold, and bright lights are fantastic for entertaining. You can always have a mix of both, that can be turned on and off as your desire.
  4. Many assume that you need bricks and mortar to create a room, but this isn’t true. Many outdoor rooms and hot tub spaces are created using screens, gazebos, hanging plants, hedges, and trellises. You just need to think outside the box.
  5. Always ensure that the furnishings you choose for your outdoor room reflect the look and style you are going for. When choosing materials, make sure they are waterproof. Or, in the case of chair covers for example, that they can be removed and stored somewhere dry easily.

Stylish décor tips for a family-friendly home

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The arrival of children means that changes will inevitably happen in your home, but having a family does not mean that you have to compromise on style in your interior space.

For many parents, having a stylish and welcoming home is a point of pride that allows them to welcome in new family friends without ever feeling embarrassed by their surroundings.

While kids are well known for causing chaos in a home, following a few simple tips can help keep spaces looking current and contemporary while remaining practical for family life.

Choose family friendly floors

When there are 2.4 children and perhaps a pet dog running in and out all day, the floors of your home can really bear the brunt. So, families who want to stay stylish with little effort should consider their floor coverings very carefully. High-traffic areas such as hallways will benefit from the addition of hard flooring such a wood, tile or laminate, as muddy boot stains can be easily washed away at the end of the day. Adding rugs and runners that can be thrown in the wash provides colour as well as improves grip to help prevent toddler tumbles.

Stylish window safety

Windows are a key feature of an interior room, and they are also a factor that parents should consider carefully once the kids come along. Why not replace dangerous corded blinds with a set of stylish window shutters that will offer the family privacy as well as allow for the flow of natural light? Shutters also provide an additional barrier between little ones and glass panes, which not only can be a bonus in terms of safety but also means that there are less greasy fingerprints to wipe away!

Do use the dining room

The dining room is one of the most important areas that parents can create in the home, as family meals have been proven to be beneficial to relationships within a household. Make sure that this room is a space where everyone will want to be by creating a welcoming interior with energising colours and great lighting.

What about a wet room?

If your bathroom looks like a war zone after wash time, then you might want to consider remodelling it with a more family-friendly style. One popular choice of bathroom for parents is the wet room, where there is a single floor covering and drain, meaning that splashes and spills are a lot less of a problem. A wet room simply allows excess water to flow away down the drain at the end of the day.

Use that utility and repurpose the porch

If your home benefits from a utility space at the back door or front porch, then this can easily be repurposed by parents to serve as a stylish and functional cloak room for the family. Adding coat hooks and boot racks will encourage family members to leave wet and muddy outer clothes here before heading on into your home. Labelling pegs and baskets can help children stow away their own accessories at the end of each day, making it much easier to locate all that is needed the next time you are looking to leave.

Space under the stairs

In many homes, the space under the main staircase is not used to its full advantage, so it is up to you how to best design and designate the space to suit your own family’s style. Some parents with older homes opt to turn this area into a second bathroom to prevent children from traipsing up and down stairs when they need to go. For others, it becomes an invaluable area for storing the necessities of all the activities that the offspring engage in, and adding custom storage can help hide away the detritus of daily life so that the hall area is uncluttered when guests arrive. Other parents find that this space is a great place to add a mini office, allowing children access to the Internet for homework tasks while they remain under the watchful eye of the rest of the household.

Think fresh and functional

Whatever changes you are looking to make, the key to creating a stylish and family-friendly home is to focus on function and keep maintenance in mind. Choosing surfaces that will wipe clean, looking at the ways that a space can work and making it easy to disguise any disorder will allow parents to have their home quickly looking its best again when it is time to welcome visitors.

6 Simple Tips for Improving Your Home’s Exterior in Winter

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No matter what climate you may live in, winter can leave your exterior looking a little drab. But the winter season doesn’t mean that the outside of your home should look barren or empty. The following are simple tips to brighten your curb appeal.

Remove Dead Plants and Leaves

Many homeowners find winter projects to do to give their home’s interior appearance a lift. When the leaves have fallen, and your yard appears barren, your exterior may also need some additional TLC to improve its look. You can begin by trimming back plants and flowers that are no longer blooming. Leaves that have fallen for the season should be raked or mulched. Trees and bushes should also be trimmed back. If you have planters on the porch, remove the dead flowers and replace with winter greens. Lovely displays filled with evergreens, holly berries and pine cones can bring a welcome burst of color to your exterior. You could also select a bouquet of faux flowers and greenery for your outdoor pots.

Home Maintenance

Chipping paint, missing shingles and old siding can make your home look unkempt, especially in the winter. You can improve the look of your structure by painting the trim a neutral color to match your home. If you’ve experienced blistered siding, hail damage or dry rot, new siding for your home can do wonders. You may also want to consider updating your siding if you’ve added a new addition or your siding color is outdated. Another way to boost your home’s aesthetics is by replacing missing roof shingles immediately after a storm.

Paint or Replace Front Door

If the sun is less visible in your region during the winter, you may need to find other ways to lighten up the look of your exterior. For a front door that has seen better days, you can replace it with a sturdy wood version. You could also repaint your current outside door in a bold color such as red.

Install a Memorable Mail Box

Your mailbox does more than play host to your cards, letters and advertisements. It can also add character to your home. Although old fashion post boxes are sturdy and serve its purpose, look for something to match your home. If you have a Victorian house, look for a design with ornate architecture. If your house is modern, a colorful box with sleek lines can liven up your outdoor curb appeal. You could also paint your mailbox in a color that complements your dwelling.

Increase Lighting

The days become shorter and darker during the winter months. If it’s difficult to see outside your home at night, you want to increase your exterior brightness with good lighting. If you have walkways and a driveway, add lights to the front porch and rear of your house. You can also install motion detector lighting on your garage that will activate when it senses movement. You could also install post lighting near the end of your driveway. When visitors or the pizza delivery driver is looking for your house, the post will act as a beacon to your guests.

Invite Nature

Inviting nature to your home with an array of bird feeders can have a huge positive impact on your home’s curb appeal. Feeders are designed to attract a variety of species in various colors such as cardinals and blue jays.

With the onset of darkness early on during the winter months, your home may look less than appealing. But by using the above simple tips, you can spice up your curb appeal and make your home look inviting and unique.

A Home Full of Joy: Decorating Everywhere

In certain things in life there is an accepted way, a common wisdom that most people accept and absorb and follow more or less unconsciously, instinctively if you will. You see this in the way people dress, act, and most importantly for today’s discussion, the way we design and decorate.

To an extent, this is a good thing. Society wouldn’t function if everyone was an iconoclast all the time, inventing new ways to make coffee in the morning. Language in itself would not exist at all, being working example of acceptance of community definitions in entirety. Sometimes, though, it’s necessary to choose your own path and make things totally, 100% personal. Decorating your home is one of those times.

The Traditional Way

Decorating your home usually involves a few simple principles, which are all sound:

  • Select a colour palette
  • Choose a basic style
  • Find flooring and furniture that fit your look
  • Paint the walls
  • Add wall art like canvas prints and other items to complement everything.

And that’s fine for specific rooms around your house. But this room-centric approach often leads to different visual experiences in each room, which can make them feel like islands of isolated design work, disconnected from each other and the rest of the house. This feeling can be exacerbated if the rooms are redecorated at different times.

Applying Design Everywhere

A way to conquer this problem is to forget some of the ‘rules’ of traditional home design and start thinking in terms of decorating everywhere. Don’t think of your rooms as isolated spots within the house, think of them as interconnected areas that flow into each other. In other words, consider the journey guests take through your home: From the entryway, they go to the living room for cocktails. Then to the dining room for dinner. They’ll visit the bathroom and the kitchen, and finish the evening in the lounge or family room, possibly even spending the night in the spare bedroom.

Then, look for opportunities to design and add decoration in less-than obvious places. The entryway is a good start – some canvas art or other design elements can turn a perfunctory space for shedding jackets and umbrellas into a pleasing first experience for guests.

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Image Source: TheCanvasFactory.com.au

Staircase landings are another spot often forgotten when you design room by room, and an ideal place for a vibrant print or other art.

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Image Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Another unusual place where a bit of wall art or other design can have a real moment of impact? Wardrobes, especially walk-in-robes, actually, are places where design usually goes to die, becoming congested with clothes and clutter. Think twice and open them up with something pleasant to look at – on the wall, the door, even the floor!

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Image Source: LifeStyle Australia

Finally, when painting your newly-designed home, consider your rooms as a whole and think about transitions. When stepping out of one room to go to another, the hall should pick up the colour palette of both and serve as a visual link between them – you could even use a gradient plan to slowly go from one shade outside of one area to another outside the next.

Whatever you decide to do to open up your home’s design, never stop thinking of new ways to have some fun with it. Once you start thinking beyond rooms the possibilities – just like the forgotten areas – are endless.