These days, with a greater emphasis on personal grooming than there may have been in the past – we are spending increasing amounts of time in the bathroom. Homeowners usually don’t need too much persuading that they should give some thought to decorating their bathroom, but the questions that then arise are ‘how?’ or ‘what bathroom decorating themes should I employ?’ and will I need a plumber?
Modern (Contemporary) Bathroom Décor Contemporary bathroom décor is best characterized by its clean lines and gleaming surfaces. It shouldn’t come as a surprise to learn that this type of décor is more commonly found in your modern urban apartments. Stainless steel fixtures such as – • basins • mirrored cabinets • bathrooms • shower walls • taps
All feature heavily in contemporary bathroom decor and are available in a wide variety of shapes. Glass and ceramic fixtures are also very popular these days. Lighting also plays an important part in the bathroom with fixtures ranging from simple to funky and available in all colors, shapes and styles.
With good home design, timber flooring not only looks great in your home, but adds significant value. It is so hard-wearing that it’s more than likely it will outlast the residents! Unlike carpets which retain dust, they are far easier to keep clean, and as a result, they are a good choice for allergy sufferers.
When a homeowner chooses timber flooring, they end up with the most beautiful and long-lasting floor that adds value to the home, be it a new one you are building or an old one you are renovating. The timber comes in many different shades and hues so matching with existing home colour schemes will make life easier. There is a natural ambience with timber and it has a sort of golden glow that seems to fit in with many different styles of décor.
Cleaning With just a quick mop or a vacuum to remove the dust, the timber is easy to keep clean. Unlike carpet spills that will leave a wet patch or a stain, spills on a timber floor can be wiped clean in a jiffy. There’s nothing like timber flooring to enhance the looks of any room. In rooms like the dining area or the kitchen spills of grease and food can be easily wiped clean. Even in the family or living room, the timber floor can make it easy on the eyes with no reflection, unlike vinyl or tiles.
Décor Bedroom furnishings look super over a timber floor – and you can add a pretty mat if you like to opt your toes on something soft when you first get up. Timber can even be used in the bathroom and laundry if they are properly treated to keep the damp out. Sometimes it’s not hardwood that is used for the flooring. In the case of softwood, the timber can absorb moisture, so humid or damp conditions might make it warp.
Some summers are much hotter than others. Whatever the reason for hot weather, it is really lovely to be able to relax in a home cooled by a split system air conditioning unit when the outside temperatures are soaring. You sleep a lot better when it’s cool, so you feel much more energetic the next day instead of going around feeling like a wilted lettuce.
If you don’t yet have any air conditioning in your home, here are some of the advantages of having a split system installed.
Biggest advantage? You’ll feel much cooler day and night.
A split system is easy to retrofit, meaning it can go into a home that is already completed, no matter how old it is. So long as the home has electricity.
It is quiet. You will hardly hear it inside and even outside, the more modern units are whisper quiet, so you don’t have to worry about annoying the neighbours.
It is relatively inexpensive, much less cost to purchase and install than a ducted system.
If you get a reverse cycle one, it can be used for heating in the winter as well as cooling in the summer, so you get more use out of it.
It is easy to maintain. All you have to do is clean the filters. It should also be checked every so often by a professional.
It is cost effective to run, especially the later models. You’ll find it costs less to run during winter than radiant heaters and especially fan heaters that are notorious for gobbling up power.
It doesn’t interfere with the view from the window like a smaller one would and it is aesthetically pleasing.
When it comes to a high end hotel, getting the interior design right is all important. Without it, your hotel will not be what your guests rightfully expect, even if the food and service is amazing. A great deal of pleasure in life comes from what we see around us, so if that experience is lacking in a hotel, the guests will not be as impressed as they should be. In fact, they will be seriously underwhelmed.
There are 4 main components of fitting out a hotel or any building: –
Fixtures and fittings -includes lights, door knobs, taps and other bathroom fixtures
The accessories – decorative items such as mirrors, artwork, vases, sculptures, chandeliers, lamps.
Each and every part of these things should be of the very best quality, but they should also be chosen to complement and in some cases, contrast, with the overall decor and style. This is where an experienced interior decorator will be needed. They have the training and experience to know what goes with what and how it should all be set up to make the most of the space.
Placement is almost as important as the item to be placed. When things are placed in just the right spot everything integrates as a whole and the room is harmonious. For instance, guests will be comfortable and have everything they need to hand, while being able to enjoy the view through a picture window or from the balcony.
If you are planning to build a new home you will find many decisions need to be made. One of the more important of these is the materials you want the various components of your home to be made from. But before anything else can go into the home, the floor must be put down, even though the coverings – if there are any – will need to wait until later.
It is important then, to decide what material you will have your floors made from. There are several choices:
Floating timber that is installed over something else, often done for renovations.
Advantages of a solid timber floor Solid timber is a very popular choice of flooring, even though it is fairly expensive. It has several advantages; durability, strength, aesthetics and variety in colour and pattern that can be achieved by using parquetry.
For a solid timber floor, you would usually have tongue and grooved planks that fit together and are laid directly over the floor joists. This kind of flooring is extremely durable and long-lasting. It can last a lifetime. Once it is finished properly it will not scratch too easily, but after some years it can be re-sanded and finished to create a floor that is almost new again.
Maintenance is relatively easy with damp mopping and vacuuming the two best ways to keep it clean. Modern finishes mean polishing is not necessary.
If you are after home improvement ideas, then Limestone flooring features superior comfort all the time. It has the endurance that most people would like. It is also presented in various colors that would match any kind or type. Basically, it will always be a classic flooring selection to pursue. It is recommended with its organic color palette which may always add an old and classic charm to a décor.
Today, there is the modern limestone floor tiles starting to gain attention. This may be cut in large-format. There are times when it can be in plank. Other instances, it may take geometric shapes. This only goes to show that it is really versatile.
The Benefits of Limestone Tiles
It is an efficient substitute for hardwood Limestone tiles have always been a neutral palette. In appearance, they are highly textured. A tile flooring made up of limestone is a perfect example of natural beauty. It somehow resembles the look of hardwood. With this, one thing is for sure – this property will give user a natural stone product which is hard-wearing and long lasting. This is also perfect for people who want to achieve a modern take on their classic limestone. This tile has the semblance of the natural variations of hardwood. It is just that in this take, it is packed with natural stone. This will add a textured and rustic charm to a room. That is for sure.
Even in the last decade the popularity of Colorbond roofing has increased by a large margin. There are various reasons for this.
Put simply – it looks good. The clean, elegant lines enhance just about any housing style you could think of from old-fashioned country homes to the most modern urban development.
You can get it curved so those that want this particular style for the veranda are happy.
There are many colours to choose from and many of them blend in with the Australian environment. Various shades of greys, browns, green and creams are taken from different aspects of the Aussie landscape such as eucalypts, mangrove swamps, sand dunes, coastal coves, outback deserts, and even some wildlife colours are used to create a palette of colours to delight everyone.
Because there are so many colours it is easy to choose one that will match in with the rest of your home. You can even add a feature wall or fence to match, creating a cohesive look to the whole property.
Colorbond roofing is a strong and sturdy material that has been developed especially for Australian conditions, so people know they are getting a product they can trust.
Many people are also happy to support an Australian company by purchasing their products.
It has thermal properties that help to reduce the costs of heating and cooling a home over its lifetime.
It is ideal for bushfire prone areas as it is fire resistant and provides few niches for live embers to get stuck in. Rather, they blow off or go out before they can set fire to your home.
It is low maintenance, so you spend less over the lifetime of the product.
Not everyone is highly organised, but when you have to move into a new home, the more organised you are the better you will cope. That said, being organised doesn’t have to be difficult. Just like professional removalists do, if you write down a list of things to do and stick to doing them, you will be organised. The trick may be in knowing exactly what to do, especially if you have never moved before. Here is a list to help you.
Sort through your things and dispose of everything that you don’t want. This will make packing easier. Disposal can take time if you are selling things, so leave enough time to do it. Taking photos of the goods and writing descriptions if you sell online all take time too, which is why starting early is a good idea.
Make that phone call to book professional removalists early, making sure they have a truck large enough for your goods, insurance and a good reputation. Another phone call a week or two ahead just to confirm is also a good idea.
If you are renting your current home, you will need to start cleaning early in order to reduce stress and get your bond back. It is much easier to clean walls and cupboards well before moving day rather than leaving it all till the last minute. Don’t forget on top of the kitchen cupboards and in the groove of sliding windows and doors. That’s where the estate agents will look.
Weed the garden and tidy up the yard too.
Pack all those things that you don’t need, such as books, decorations and pictures, out of season clothing, crafts/hobbies and some of the children’s toys. Getting these packed toys back after moving will delight the children and keep them out of your hair while you unpack.
Pull down the swing/slides/trampoline and pack them away a few weeks ahead of moving date, especially if your children don’t use them much.
You take your love of gardening to a whole new level — to the balcony! A balcony garden could be simple or complex, depending on the type of plants and the garden style you choose. Since balconies have a different climate than natural ground soil, the plant choices may vary too from your backyard garden.
However, there are some aspects to keep in mind while planning for a balcony garden:
How large the space should be, has to be the fundamental question in your mind when planning planting in your balcony. The choice here has to be specific and has to be noted for the size of plants to choose from.
The sunlight your balcony gets every day (for how many hours) has to be noted. Approximations work sometimes, but if plants selected for your balcony garden are sensitive to the scorching heat of the sun, then it is better to have accurate estimates of the sun’s exposure.
How much time would you be able to give to your plants out of your busy schedule?
Water availability is also an important factor to keep in mind while selecting plants for your balcony garden.
The budget has to be the first consideration as further planning is dependent on it.
The windiness and overall temperature has to be monitored for some specific plants. Also, in case of growing edibles, more careful selection and processes would be involved.
The plants grown in your balcony garden are a part of house interior and need to be kept tidy and aesthetically appealing at all times. Following are 4 plants ideal for balcony gardens:
Boston Fern Also known as the Boston sword fern, this plant grows like a shrub and is ideal for pots. For balcony garden, a dense plant like this makes for a tranquil green background for the more colorful smaller plants to be grown in the fore.
With increasing floors being built in commercial buildings, such as shopping malls, hospitals, or offices; installing elevators has become a prerequisite. However, elevators used for commercial projects often differ from those installed in residential structures. This is because when it comes to commercial buildings, different types of elevators can be installed for different functions.
Since the elevators installed in commercial areas are for the use of the general public, there are also some laws that state the requirements for their proper installation. Hence, any incidents concerning a commercial elevator may lead to a lawsuit against your company. Therefore, it is necessary to meet all the requirements to the letter.
Below mention are some benefits of installing commercial elevators in your official building.
Better Mobility Hydraulic or electrical elevators are commonly used in commercial buildings as they are better equipped for high speeds and lifting heavier weights. These types can carry up to six thousand pounds of weight. Furthermore, the hydraulic elevator can carry loads at the rate of 200 feet per minute; whereas electric elevators can move with the speed of 500 feet per minute.
Aside from offices, elevators are also quite useful in hospitals; not just for people with physical conditions that do not permit them to use the stairs, but also for moving patients on stretchers to different floors in a lesser amount of time. People on wheelchairs can also commute easily on such elevators as they are usually designed with wider doors and have space and weight capacity for a larger number of people.
Easy to Set Up and Maintain Setting up and maintaining commercial elevators, is far easier than you think! Even if you did not leave any space for installing an elevator within your architectural design; you can install small commercial elevators whenever the need arises. Different types of commercial elevators such as; porch lifts and LULA (Limited Use Limited Application) are also widely used at workplaces. These are cheaper as well as easy to accommodate in small spaces without needing any changes in the building structure.
Many people these days enjoy living in a two or even three storey home. They have more room and can enjoy the view and the upper breezes. But one thing they may not enjoy so much is going up those stairs, especially when they are feeling tired. Home lifts are the obvious choice for homes with staircases.
There are many advantages of installing a home lift; here are 4 of them.
Save carrying heavy weights upstairs – a home lift is a quick and easy way to access the upper storey/s of your home when you have heavy loads to carry up. Groceries, luggage, furniture and home accessories are all too heavy to cart up stairs. Furniture is often too large and awkward to get around the narrow stairs, especially if there is a landing and bend in the middle.
Ease of use – lifts are much easier for older people to use. Anyone with arthritis or other health problems that make them weak will appreciate having a lift instead of using the stairs. Children can learn to use a lift at an early age and it can save them falling on the steps. Using a lift is quieter than those rattling footsteps on stairs that are not carpeted.
Easier to clean – vacuuming stairs is difficult at the best of times, and they seem to get dirty more often than the floor due to the concentration of traffic on them. A lift can be vacuumed in a few minutes compared to the stairs and it takes much less effort.
Safety – it is much safer to use a lift than to use stairs, no matter whether you are young old, strong or weak. There is always the possibility of falling when coming down or even going up a staircase. In a lift, there is no likelihood of falling. You can even have a chair to sit on in the lift if you want to. When you are carrying a baby in your arms, or are pregnant, it is much safer to use a lift than to go up or down stairs.
Having a lift will enable you to stay in your home even when you become frail with age. It will increase the value of your home and make it suitable for a wider demographic should you decide to sell for any reason. Thus, the house is likely to sell more quickly so you can get on with the rest of your life. Once you have a lift installed you will not be able to believe the difference it makes in your life, being more convenient and pleasant to access those upper reaches.
Most people who think of lifts, envisage them being in high-rise apartments or places like hospitals. However, these days it is becoming more usual to see home lifts in private homes. You may think that is only the frail elderly that would need to have a lift in their home, but in fact this is not so. When you think of the energy expended going up stairs and the difficulty of taking goods up and down you will soon realise that having a lift in the home is a necessity rather than a luxury.
Very often, the ground floor of the home is used for the garage and outdoor living accessories. That means you need to carry all your groceries and every single thing you need in the home up the stairs. Hauling all your groceries out of the boot of your car is bad enough; carting them up steps and stairs is worse still, especially when you are already tired from a day at work. So you don’t have to be elderly to make good use of a lift.
Of course, the elderly will certainly benefit from a lift in their home. They are the ones who are most likely to stumble and fall on stairs. Such a fall could easily break multiple bones and they may never recover. It is a shame to see their life ended prematurely all for want of a simple lift to help them up and down the stairs. Older people will be able to stay independently in their homes for much longer when they have the aids they need to make life easier for them. And if they need to use a walker, it is much easier and safer for them to use a lift than to try and get that walker up the stairs or down.
The work space needs ample lightening, and so does your home, but in order to moderate the searing sunlight and create an aesthetically pleasing ambiance for your office or home interiors, blinds are a great option to go for. A wide range of options is available to beautify your humble abode or sophisticated workplace; blinds are also a great option for home based offices as they differentiate the ambiance from that of a house. Pleated sheets, while being the widely used style of sheets used in offices and houses, have other competitors too.
1. Wooden Blinds
Wood works never go out of fashion, not even in blinds for your home or workplace. There is a wide variety of styles when it comes to wooden blinds, from maple to bamboo and more, depending on the produce and prices in area. The wooden blinds look amazing if the furniture is traditional in style and flooring is wooden too and surprisingly it doesn’t look like ‘nauseatingly woody’. The workplace looks rather elegant and warm with wooden blinds and gives a classy look to the entire ambience with rich wooden office furniture.
2. Sheer Blinds To hide or not to hide! This style of blinds is a horizontal design with sheer cloth that does not block the entire view but creates a translucent version of it. These shades are good for the areas where the light is needed but privacy has to be kept in mind too, such as bathrooms and kitchens. In case of internal glass partitions in offices, these sheer blinds work well too.
3. Vertical Blinds The vertical blinds are often seen hung on patio doors but are not limited there. This is one of the most common styles of blinds for home and offices as this allows necessary sunlight to sift through. Also, the vertical blinds are easy to manage as they don’t tangle and very easy to clean frequently.
When you’re looking for fun, you often head off to a variety of different places. However, what if you could get all the entertainment options that you need, right within your home?
Imagine the amount of money you will save and the number of parties you could throw, and that too, at your own home! It doesn’t matter how old you are, anyone can take advantage of a designated entertainment area within the house. Following are the 5 reasons why you must have an outdoor entertainment area in your home.
1. Visual Appeal Adding a deck, patio, or a gazebo to your home will enhance the outer beauty of your house and built up an alluring ambiance, which will make your property standout from the rest. You will also feel a sense of pride and happiness by being at home.
2. Family Gatherings With a separate space for parties, you can easily hangout with your family and connect while having fun at home. By setting up a heater or an air-conditioner, you will also get the chance to enjoy yourself in all kinds of weather indoors.
Moreover, while making changes to the home, if you add swings and slides in your own yard, your kids and their friends can enjoy themselves within the comforts of home. That way, you’ll be able to keep an eye out for them as well.
The balcony is a place where you can sit and relax after a hard day’s work. Having a few plants growing in pots on the balcony will enhance the look of the space and increase your enjoyment of it. However, it is essential to take note of just what the weather conditions are like.
High balconies are often cool, windy places; others may be exposed to hot sun all day long, while still others may be on the shady side of the building and not get much sun at all. Then there are those that have shade for most of the day, but when in sun it is scorching hot. If your balcony is like that, choose shade-lovers and use a screen to shelter them from the sun.
Most plants need a certain amount of sun to grow successfully, but if you have a shady balcony you can still grow shade-loving plants such as ferns. To get colour, use plants that have colourful foliage like coleus and begonia. So what plants are hardy enough to withstand the vagaries of wind and weather on a balcony?
There was a time when the installation of elevators in the residence was either considered a luxury or a necessity for people with medical conditions. However, with the lowering price of elevators, people who want to improve their way of living are now commonly installing them in their homes as well. Many countries are even passing laws nowadays and making elevator installation mandatory in buildings with more than 3 stories.
On the whole, elevators can be quite useful and following are some of the reasons why you need one at your residence too.
Eases Transportation Other than making the commute easier and more independent for people with disabilities or any other medical condition, residential elevators can also be useful for moving furniture, luggage and other household items that might be difficult to carry down or up the stairs. It also ensures that the item you are carrying will not be damaged because of mishandling of any sort and that the transporting process will not put your safety at risk.
People who live in apartment complexes with no access to a backyard appreciate their balconies as a place to relax and enjoy the fresh air and sunshine. And naturally, they also like to grow some kind of greenery on the balcony – it seems to be an inbuilt need for most people to have something to do with living plants and earth. Many balconies are ideal for growing plants on. Even those that don’t get much sun can be used to grow shade-loving plants.
However, a balcony is a tiny place and care must be taken when creating a garden with pot plants, otherwise it will risk looking crowded or piecemeal instead of attractive. In fact, it is easy to overcrowd such a small space and then you don’t feel comfortable sitting there – if you can even fit your easy chair in.
Use lightweight pots. Not only will it be easier to move them around, it will reduce the overall weight on the balcony. It’s a good idea to check what weight the balcony can bear as pots filled with moist potting mix and plants can be heavier than you may think.
There are many different styles of windows, but one of the latest is the sliding window. Not that it is exactly new, but many years ago it was not an option at all, as timber was the main building material for windows and was used for holding window glass in the various styles that were available.
Sliding windows depend on aluminium for the tracks to slide them along; if it was timber the material would wear quickly or warp in the weather and make sliding them open or shut impossible. If you are wondering what kind of windows are best for your new home, here are some pros and cons of sliding windows. Note, these are sliding windows with aluminium surrounds.
With sliding windows you can have a much larger window space. This allows more light into the house and more cool breezes when the day is hot. You can also enjoy a wider vista if you have a nice view to admire. This would not be possible with other kinds of windows due to the weight of the glass, but with sliding windows the weight is supported by the aluminium slot – and the building material underneath it.
Sliding windows are easy to open and shut as you don’t have to push them up, just slide them along.
You can get almost any size window in this style; large, small, wide, high.
Want natural light to stream in to your restaurant, bathing the whole place in the invigorating rays of the sun in style? Use glass dividers. Restaurants seeking transparent space utilization will find glass dividers as the perfect solution. Glass dividers are made of tough material and can glide smoothly along an overhead track system.
You’ll find glass dividers in fixed, sliding, folding, and movable configurations, and they can be either textured or clear. The choice between the available options largely depends on preferences and use. Glass dividers serve multiple purposes, especially in a restaurant. However, it is important to know the best kind of glass dividers for restaurants to be able to make the right choice. Let’s look at some of the ideal glass dividers for restaurants.
Stained glass dividers If you want to partition the space in your restaurant while adding décor to it, stained glass dividers are a good idea. Without blocking the light, these dividers provide privacy. You can divide the space in your restraints into two parts by using stained glass dividers, or use them to partition the different areas of your restaurant, for instance the dining area and the kid’s playing area.
Green homes are those that are eco friendly, leaving a small carbon footprint. This is often done by the use of passive heating, cooling and lighting. That is where windows come in, especially in a temperate climate. Large windows on the sunny side of the house will allow natural sunlight in to warm the room and make it lighter. Thus, there will be less need to have the heater and lights on throughout the day as is often needed for a room with small windows.
Windows and the Sun You might think that a window that allows the sun in will make the room too hot in the summer. This is not the case. The sun is higher in the sky in the summer, so will not shine into the window as much as it does in the winter when it is low. Having wider eaves will also ensure that there is shade on the walls in the summer.
Another thing to use for passive cooling is a shrubby tree outside, that will lose its leaves in the winter, allowing the sun through. In the summer it will have leafy branches that cast shade over the windows.
Type The kind of window is also important when it comes to being eco friendly. Remember that while sliding windows are usually large, only half the window cavity will be open. This is also true of sash windows. Louvre windows will open up the full cavity because each panel swings out to become horizontal. That said, they don’t shut as tightly as other windows and they tend to catch the dust more when open.
SANTA CRUZ Library friends hold spring book sale The Friends of the Santa Cruz Public Library will host its Big Book Sale May 24-25 at Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium, 307 Church St. The sale will include more than 10,000 gently used books of all kinds, most priced $1-$3. The sale schedule: • 2-4 p.m. May […]
The Golden Boy is back to his old ways. Santa Cruz’s Nat Young won the World Surf League’s Caparica Surf Fest Pro, Men’s QS 3,000 event in Praia de Caparica, Lisbon, Portugal, on Saturday. Young, who turns 28 on June 17, beat France’s Jorgann Couzinet 16.13 to 13.33 in the final. It was Young’s first […]