Archive for February, 2011

PostHeaderIcon Ways to make your balcony interesting

Your balcony is the area where you come and relax after a hard day’s work with a good book. This is the place to enjoy a romantic full moon light with a late night coffee. Thus, it is needed to decorate your balcony to make it more lovable and interesting.

Well, before everything the primary step is to keep it clean and tidy. You can start off with exotic potted plants or hanging vines. Create a garden kitchen balcony with mini cherry tomatoes, mini aubergines or courgettes. Citrus trees and sweet pepper plants are both decorative and useful. These colorful plants not only deck up your balcony but also help to purify the air.

Wooden balcony is very interesting. Add some furniture like coffee tables. Otherwise you can place the relaxing bean bags. Wrought iron grills would give it a rustic look. If you have enough space, hang a swing. Use outdoor lighting like the all weather rope ones. They look very catchy when you place it under the railing.

PostHeaderIcon Roof-top garden and their types

The garden created on a roof top is referred to as the roof-top garden. Apart from decking up your roof, it also helps to control temperature, provide recreational opportunities and food.

There are two types of roof top gardens based on the structural condition of the roof, extensive and intensive. The first one is a lightweight garden and requires very little maintenance. It can be installed in both sloped and flat roofs. You can grow here a wide range of wild flowers, hardy grasses, sedums. It is better to get drought tolerant herbs which would not be affected due excessive sun and wind exposure.

The intensive one needs a flat roof. These gardens possess an exotic variety of beautiful flowers, shrubs and trees. The vegetation either covers the whole area or is placed over raised beds. Thus a powerful roof structure is essential. These plants are sensitive, so, must be kept in covers during winter. Good maintenance is necessary and you need to fix proper lighting, exits and guard rails.

PostHeaderIcon Basement renovation ideas

Your basement is the underground storey of your home. Modern homes come with limited space. So renovating your basement into a livable space is a good idea.

Make it your kid’s playground. You can also convert it into a game room by placing a billiard or carom table. Den or library is other good renovation ideas. Otherwise create your own wet bar with a counter, wine shelves and bar stools. If you have enough space, make the area your home gym stuffed with gym equipments. Then you can also make the area your second bathroom with a Jacuzzi tub. If your basement is big enough, use it as a home theatre to relax with family and friends. Besides, turning the area your study or home office is both useful and intelligent.

Otherwise, the place can be just used for holding parties. After deciding on the theme, start off with the painting, required décor items and necessary stuffs. You also need to consult a contractor and plumber.

PostHeaderIcon Ways to clean an expensive carpet

Do you possess expensive oriental carpets and rugs in your house? Well, these are valuable assets and should be maintained properly so they last for years. Here are some tips to clean your expensive carpet.

Regular vacuum cleaning is a must. If you have accessories over them, lift them up for effective cleaning. When you see spots on your carpet, rub it off as soon as possible. Do not be harsh, as it may ruin the surface. Do not delay if you see stains on them. Place a thick cloth on the mark with something heavy on it. The cloth will slowly absorb the stain. For the syrup and cola spillages, clean them immediately with plain water or water with vinegar added to it.

For the molds use lemon juice and salt or some non-chlorine bleach on the carpet. You can lay them out on your roof or balcony when it is sunny. Otherwise you can brush gently with a mixture of water (100 ml) and hydrogen peroxide (1 spoon).

PostHeaderIcon Hobby room ideas

The homes today come with a very restricted space. You are not left with any room to carry out your hobbies. In this case, the basement area or your attic would be perfect for a hobby room.

If you are into the habit of reading, creating a good library would be a nice choice. Thus, fill the area with large shelves, a table and chairs. Make it your studio if you practice photography or painting. As the basement area or attic is away from public view, little mess would not do much harm.

If you are into sewing, you can easily and freely keep your sewing machines and accessories in the hobby room. Otherwise you can divide the area and set one half for your children. They would get a nice playground in their home. Are movies your favorite pastime? Turn your hobby room into a home theatre. Use proper lighting if you are planning the hobby room in the basement. Nice wallpapers are a good option than painting.

PostHeaderIcon Wall decorations for attic bedrooms

An attic room is little different from other rooms with its sloped roof, dormers, odd places. Also, the room does not get much sunlight because of its odd and unusual pattern. Thus you have to be very careful while decorating the walls of an attic bedroom.

As the room is already dark, putting too much of dark shades, would make the room gloomy. You can use the light warm shades like beige, pink or yellow for painting the walls. It will make the room look more spacious and inviting. You can hang some small artworks, mirrors or photographs if not anything. Mini candle stands would give it a rustic look. But be careful, too much of wall décor would make the room crowded.

Otherwise, you can stick colorful wallpapers with vertical stripes. It will make the ceiling and walls look taller. Do not use any wall décor if you have wallpapers.

PostHeaderIcon Smart designs for a home office

Are you planning to work from home? But the homely ambience makes us feel a little laid back. Thus a little bit of décor is needed to give it a smart professional look.

Firstly, decide on the area. Your basement is a good option as it is separated from the other rooms. Thus you can work freely in privacy with lesser distractions. Use bright wall paints like yellow to keep you awake and jazzed up all the time. Get some decent paintings for the walls. Other wise, use wallpapers, they are trendy and cheaper than paints.

Space saving furniture is a smart choice because you have to stuff a single room with many accessories. You would need a home office desk, file cabinets, meeting table, many book shelves and most importantly a computer table. Just see, that the furniture have lots of storage capacity. Maintain harmony in your office décor, since lack of balance in the ambience is very disturbing for work.

PostHeaderIcon Eco-friendly wall paints for your house

Are you planning to paint your home? Well, the current trend is towards eco friendly painting materials. They come in various shades and are also beneficial for health.

The traditional paints emit some volatile organic compounds (VOC) in the air which are harmful for the environment. These compounds lead to headaches, allergies, respiratory troubles and even cancer. Thus, an eco friendly paint is the one which emits few or no volatile organic compounds or VOCs in the air. It also must be free from acrylic softeners and oil. The eco friendly paints are more suitable for the interior walls than the exterior ones. It is because, in case of exterior walls, air can dilute the hazardous effects of the VOCs.

There are various brands which offer eco friendly paints. Some of them are BioShield Paint, Ecos Organic Paints, Earth Born Paints, Safecoat, YOLO Colorhouse, St. Astier Lime Paints. Be careful, and check the list of ingredients before buying the eco-friendly paints.

PostHeaderIcon Importance of Feng Shui in your home

Feng Shui is an ancient Chinese art of utilizing the positive energy (chi) to bring harmony and prosperity in your home in connection with your personal energy. Here are some tips to make a happy home with Feng Shui.

Do not keep your rooms messy, it hinders the easy flow of chi. Moving water facilitates easy flow of positive energy. Thus place a bowl of fresh water near your entrance and drawing room. Fresh flowers are also important. Do not forget to throw away the dried ones. Shift your bed if it faces bathroom or the doorway and do not place mirrors at the footboards of your bed. Sleeping on mats on floors restricts the circulation of positive chi around you while you are sleeping.

Do not keep beds under the ceiling. It affects your marriage and health. Avoid bunk beds for children. They can develop learning and health issues. Place “laughing Buddha” statues in various parts of your home.

PostHeaderIcon How to keep your kitchen chimney clean

Your kitchen chimney keeps your kitchen beautiful by sucking out the smells, odors and smokes from it. But as a result of suction, some unwanted substances get stuck up into the flue leading to serous damage. Thus proper steps must be taken to clean up the kitchen chimney.

The outer surface of the chimney must be cleaned daily with a soft rag soaked in a cleanser. In electric chimneys, it is best to replace its charcoal filter after every six months. The cleaning brushes should be according to the size of the chimney. They have flexible fiberglass rods. Thus you can clean any bend or corner of your chimney.

The double spiral brushes (with more bristles) are perfect for removing soot. Use the single wire one if you have slight dusting. Get a flat wire brush which is ideal for heavy jobs. A poly brush is fitted for metal chimneys, as they do not cause scratches inside the pipe. While cleaning the fans, it is recommended to call the professionals.