Friday, May 25, 2018

Cottage Loft Bedroom Progress

It's finally cottage season! I started designing our loft at the height of winter. After multiple iterations, the final design board looks like this. 

I had all the furniture delivered in late March, and even tried to jump on the #oneroomchallenge bandwagon in April. At the end of April, a pretty mood board was all I had, and all the boxes were still unopened. Work has been unprecedentedly busy - having 14-hour workday a few times a week seemed to be the norm these days. By the time weekends came, I was so mentally and physically drained that my creative spirit had to take a back seat. In early May, I finally got around to spending weekends at our cottage. To refresh your memory, we left the loft like this last season. 

And this is the work-in-progress. That Bowl Wall Lamp from EQ3 was my favourite hack,  which I turned into a ceiling mount. 

And this was after adding the wall shelves, and styling in progress. 

I spruced up the Ikea Brimnes storage bed with these leather handles from Etsy. Couldn't be happier with how it turned out. 

Another styling in progress shot from a different perspective. I will include source list once I finished the room. 

The armchair used to be in our living room. On a whim I had Anthony drag it up to the loft to see how it might work for the space. Looks like it belongs there all along! I will be back with more pictures of the final reveal. 

While we were busy working in our loft, our contractor, aka the Super Ian, patiently and meticulously installed the subway backsplash for us in the kitchen. 

Installing 65 square foot of subway tiles 11 feet above the floor with cabinets in the way was no easy feat. I will come back to write more about it. 

Giving Your Front Yard a Makeover

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However diligent you are in making your interiors beautiful, the frontage of your property can be left behind and start to look a little sad and neglected. Your front garden is, after all, an important part of your home and returning to see a well-ordered, welcoming area will give you a lift after a hard day at work. Equally, coming home to a run-down house will be depressing, no matter lovely it is inside. Luckily there are some easy fixes to transform your frontage from plain and dowdy to eye-catching, many of which needn’t cost a great deal. If your home is in need of a facelift, try some of these ideas.

Garage and Driveway
If you have a garage, it will be quite a dominant feature from the road. The first job will be to remove any weeds and dirt that have been left to proliferate, and give the garage and the drive a thorough clean and sweep. Washing your garage doors can breathe new life into them, and if they are a boring color or the paint is fading, rub them down and give them a fresh coat of paint in a new, cheery color. If they’re damaged, inoperable or out of date, you can get very smart, fully automated doors from companies like All About Doors, so if they are beyond saving, work out a budget for replacing them. Once the driveway is clear, see if there are any potholes or broken areas that need infilling, and check all the pipes, gutters and drains around the garage.

The House
Washing the windows will bring back sparkle to your glass, and make a big difference to the look of your house. Getting a window cleaner in on a regular basis isn’t overly expensive, and will keep the glass looking clean and shiny all year round, so it’s a worthwhile investment. If you have UPVC or similar fixtures, a wash will spruce them up nicely too. Wooden sills and fascias might need a coat of paint, or if rotten, they will need replacing. The same is true of the front door, and as it is a focal point for the house, it’s good to have a smart, clean door that suits the building. If your door is damaged or doesn’t have the best standards of security, you should consider getting it replaced. You’ll need to remove any dead plants, weeds, rubbish, and belongings from the front area, and replace them with clean pots and plants that bring color and style to the frontage. If you’re not much of a gardener, use low maintenance and drought-resistant plants, and make use of exterior artworks to bring color and interest to the house.

Unless you’ve let things get out of hand, it shouldn’t take too much time to get everything ship-shape again. Once it’s tidy, try and maintain the area with a sweep and a wash-down on a regular basis, then you will be able to enjoy the bright, welcoming exterior of your home every time you see it.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

How to Climb the Housing Ladder

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For many people, simply getting a foot on the first rung of the housing ladder is a challenge that can take years and a great deal of patience and sacrifice to achieve. From owning your first property, though, its a matter of following some simple and methodological steps in order to continue to climb, reinvesting your cash in larger or more elegant and desirable properties after having renovated or otherwise improved your previous property. Here are a few things youll need to consider when making your own way through the housing market - up that property ladder.

Profit On Your Property
Each property you own should increase in price while in your habitation. This should happen incrementally as house prices inflate, but you can help this along by making small changes to the house - modernizing and renovating, or perhaps landscaping the garden - thatll cost far less than the profits the work accrues after the sale.

Remember Location
You may invest in your first property or two for convenience in terms of location - selecting the place thats closest to work, the town center, or friends and family. Location, though, is one of the more important factors for long-term property investment, and can be a real predictor of huge price fluctuation after an area becomes more desirable for upper-middle-class people.

Sell Up Quick
Waive those real estate agent fees by selling your property by yourself; create real estate flyers to publicize your home on social media, emails and in physical leaflets, and perhaps create your homes very own Instagram page for prospective buyers. If youre good with people and good at setting up your house to be desirable to buy, you should find this step easy, dependent on the ambition with which you set your valuation. On this front, its best to be realistic and not hopeful.

Always Go Up
Once youve sold a property, its important that you repeat the process but with a larger cash investment with a larger expected return. Theres no climbing of the property ladder in simply buying and selling homes for a slight profit each time without reinvesting that profit - thats property stagnation. Take all your cash and what youve learned about location and selling techniques to make your next purchase wiser and more profitable.

Learn and Grow
When youre renovating or otherwise adjusting a home, you can save an enormous amount of money by doing the bulk of the work by yourself and without the expensive help of a hired handyman. In order to cut these significant costs, youll need to practice your DIY skills militantly, checking guides, watching YouTube tutorials, and examining your technique to make sure your work is efficient and tidy. The more you work on this and the more you understand DIY habits and techniques, the more youll see the possibilities in a home for you to play with to increase its value.

So there you have it, some steps to help you climb up the housing ladder. Be patient yet ambitious, and youll find that over time youre moving into more and more illustrious places without breaking the bank.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Tips for Creating an Elegant Home Design

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Your home is an extension of you, and the aesthetic that you choose to create within your house can say a lot about you, your personality and your lifestyle. Therefore, it is no wonder that so many people take pride in creating a beautiful home appearance, and designing an environment that any possible guests would be delighted to come and stay in. As such, it is important to think about all of the different aspects of the home, from the colour combinations you use, to your attention to the smaller details. If you are looking to create an elegant ambience within your home, then here are a few simple tips for creating a sophisticated and inviting living environment.

Start with the heart of the home
 The kitchen is the base of operations within the home, where people commune to cook, eat, talk and spend time together. Therefore, it is one of the most frequented areas of the house, and it gets the most foot traffic. With that in mind, if you are looking to create a centrepiece of elegance to set the tone for the rest of your home, this would be the room to do it in. Making simple changes to the kitchen design, from adding in wall details, to placing old countertops with more modern ones, can make a huge difference to the feel of the room. Alternatively, you might prefer to conduct a larger scale refurbishment, and undergo a complete kitchen renovation. Whichever way you go, think about the atmosphere you are trying to create within your home: do you want a sleek, modern design, incorporating light, monochrome colours? Or do you want an aesthetic of more traditional elegance, where darker tones and repurposed woods are more commonly used?

Think about the lighting
Homes are usually built with standard light fittings which, while they provide the basic necessary light, do nothing for the atmosphere within the home. If you have the time and resources to alter the lighting within your home, then you can really start to create the desired ambiance you are looking for. Adding spotlights around the edge of a room will allow you to play with the balance of within the room, meaning you can switch from playful shadows to having the room be as bright as daylight in an instant. The addition of standing lamps, turned up wall lights, or under cabinet lighting can also make for a great way to add different aspects of light into the room.

Take care in the details
Creating an elegant home design is about much more than your furniture choices, and the textures and patterns you use on the walls and floors; the factor that will really make your home stand out above all the rest is your attention to detail. Think about how all of the items within a room work together, and what impressions you get when you walk in: are there any obvious flaws in your aesthetic? Then move onto smaller details, such as how to finish off your look with soft furnishings, such as pillows, throws and drapes. If you are planning on making bigger changes within a room, you can even go as far as to change the type of crown moulding you have around the top edge of your walls. Getting the right design for this can really pull a room together.

Friday, May 18, 2018

Easy Ways To Make Your Home More Eco Friendly

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As the effects of climate change and global warming continue to become more real, world is becoming more environmentally conscious and shifting towards eco-friendly homes even as pressure mounts on industrial economies to cut their emissions.

Making your home eco-friendly doesn’t require a lot of expenses or turning your life upside down. You don’t have to buy fancy gadgets or tear down your house. It simply involves limiting the impact your lifestyle has on the environment and conserving energy for sustainability.

Energy-saving bulbs
Not all light bulbs are the same. For the same amount of illumination, incandescent bulbs consume 90% more electricity than LED bulbs. Worse even, the incandescent bulbs also emit a lot heat which requires your home cooling system to work longer further driving up your energy consumption.

Replace your ordinary light bulbs with energy-saving bulbs to make your home more eco-friendly and reduce your electric bills.

Turn off when not in use
Don’t leave the lights on when they are not in use, even for a short duration. These small savings in energy consumption accumulate and make a significant impact towards energy conservation.

On the same breath, switch off and unplug your electrical appliances when you are not using them instead of leaving them on standby mode. There is ghost consumption when you leave your appliances plugged in which contributes to your total consumption.
Do not leave your water running either. Most people leave the water running when brushing or washing and this results into a lot of wastage. Turn off the tap when you do not need the water.

Heat management
You don’t have to freeze and risk your life to make your home more eco-friendly. What you have to do is to find smart ways to maintain the suitable temperatures you want in your home.

Thicker and brighter walls retain heat longer and you don’t even have to call home improvement service for this. With simple wall papers and interior décor, you can make home more heat retaining.

Make use of your windows during the day to regulate the interior temperatures and only run the air conditioner when you have to.

More importantly, make sure you heating and cooling system are in the best condition to minimize losses which would mean longer operating hours. You can take the Hvac Training Us to equip you with the skills you need for your DIY home repairs.

Landscaping improves the aesthetic appeal of your home but can also make your home more eco-friendly.

While selecting the types of plants for your garden, go with the native plants in your area which are better suited for your climate conditions thereby reducing the need for you to constantly water and tend to them. Bringing in exotic plants from elsewhere can some time lead to the death of native plants.

Also, use compost manure instead of fertilizer to improve your soil fertility.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Seasonal Refresh for Your Home

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With a new season on the horizon, now is the perfect time to revamp the appearance of your home, and in turn, make it more suitable for sun-drenched days of entertaining and socializing. To revive the freshness of your home, you don’t need to have a whole new bathroom fitted or to knock down a wall to create a kitchen-diner. Instead, a brand new feel is more readily achieved by changing the position of furniture and replacing worn and torn furnishings like rugs, carpets, and sofa cushions in favour of light, colourful ones. You can renew the look of your home in just a few easy steps, so begin making a list of items that you’d like to buy and display, and ones that aren’t currently fulfilling their purpose.

Replace Drapes With Shutters
With the days getting longer and lighter, replace heavy drapes with tidy light-coloured shutters or blinds. Blinds can provide plenty of privacy, and you’ll also be able to control the level of brightness each room receives by adjusting how they cleverly filter daylight. This control allows you to create a relaxed, private feel by adjusting the filter, and open them completely when you want to illuminate a room and flood it with natural sunlight. Going one step further, consider changing the window panes and frames to ones of a classic, stylish sash design. You can achieve this by visiting and looking into getting made-to-measure windows complete with windowsills.

New Coat Of Paint
Unless you want to completely alter how rooms in your house feel in terms of warmth and character, you should stick to repainting them in the same, or a similar colour, as they were before. By simply adding a new coat of paint, you can instantly freshen up the appearance of tired or stained walls. You can improve the look of your home by making other visible surfaces, such as the floor and ceiling, appear clean and free from dirt, grime, and dust.

Add Plants
Spruce up the place by adding a beautiful plant in each room, and don’t forget to add some greenery to the bathroom. For the bathroom, you could choose the Aloe Vera plant which reduces indoor humidity, and as a result, it is very useful in rooms where moisture builds up. Before adding your potted plants, if your surfaces look a little dusty and uncared for, then wash them down thoroughly. Vases of colourful flowers in bloom can cheer up a space, so think about getting some long-stemmed flowers such as roses or lilies, and arranging them in a tall clear vase for a stylish aesthetic.

Have a meticulous spring clean to remove any grubbiness that’s accumulated. When you’re doing this, try and avoid using harsh chemicals that aren’t environmentally friendly. Instead, you can use lemon juice, baking soda, and white vinegar for deep-cleaning fabrics, cookware and glass. Do this alongside clearing out mess, clutter, and possessions that no longer serve a purpose in your home. Replace old trinkets and decorations with new ones, or decide to keep surfaces clear and tidy by removing them completely.

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