How to Make Your Home More Attractive

An attractive home can be a source of pride for its owner. Well-appointed interior design and beautiful landscaping can also lead to a higher resale price when it is time to sell the property.

How to beautify the interior and exterior of your home?

Everyone seems to want to offer their opinion on this subject, but their tips can often contradict each other. For example, some people will tell you that taking a do-it-yourself approach is best because you will be investing time instead of actually having to put money into your home. Others will say that a better return on investment will only come from hiring a professional to make the necessary improvements.

There are good arguments for each of these home improvement strategies. It is also possible to combine them, or, at least, look into the possibility of combining them. You can get professional advice before starting any home beautification projects and then decide which improvements you can do yourself and which you should hire a professional to help you complete.

Professionals should be able to tell you what improvements will add the most value to your home. This is why it is a good idea, for all landscaping changes to get professional advice. The same is also true for interior design projects.

Here are some things that professionals are most likely to tell you when you ask them what you can do to make your home more attractive inside and out.

Create an interesting look by painting trim or staining wood features

Instead of painting the entire home a new color, you can simply change the color of the trim or stain wood doors and window frames. This can add visual appeal to the home. Also, it is relatively easy and cheap (even if you hire a professional).

Install paving stones

Paving stones can make landscaping much more attractive. A new walkway through the garden, an enhanced patio, a cobblestone path through the front yard: these elements can make a huge difference in the look and feel of your outdoor spaces. Of course, the quality of the installation of paving stone features is important when it comes to the actual overall value of the improvement. Keep in mind that the materials can cost quite a lot, and professional landscapers may be able to get them for a lower price. This means that the cost of hiring a professional may actually not be much more than it would cost to take the do-it-yourself approach.

Lower your outdoor maintenance time with the right plants and flowers

You can enjoy some short term benefits by creating a more attractive outdoor area using carefully selected plants. How does this work? Certain plants, trees, grasses and flowers are easy to care for. A landscaper will be able to help you choose species that are attractive AND low maintenance. You can not only enjoy a more attractive home with a higher resale value, but you can also lower the amount of time that you have to spend caring for the plants on your property.

Upgrade the lighting

Lighting can make a home more attractive both indoors and outdoors. Solar-powered lights can bring some attractiveness to the landscaping at nighttime, when plants and paving are invisible. Indoors, recessed lighting, LED strings and other modern installations can create a modern, welcoming ambiance. Because of the wiring involved, these projects usually require professional expertise. However, the benefits, both in terms of value and attractiveness, can make lighting improvements a worthwhile investment.

With professional help, you can increase attractiveness and value with improvement projects both indoors and outdoors.

How to Give Your Home a Hollywood Shine

Pick up any celebrity gossip magazine or flick through the Daily Mail and you’ll typically find countless glossy images of multi-millionaire movie stars or musicians showing off their fine-looking homes and ostensibly wonderful lifestyles.

Typically nestled among the striking Hollywood Hills or along Malibu’s glorious sandy beaches, the celeb homes are examples of some of the world’s most arresting architectural behemoths, jam-packed with priceless artwork and expensive furniture …

… and you can’t help but feel just a teeny-weeny bit jealous.

Whilst it’s easy resent their obvious wealth and seemingly never-ending throng of pricey fixtures, it’s much simpler to bottle this envy and use the energy to add a few items to your own home that’d put the Kardashian’s to shame.

Probably.

Add an Iconic Recliner

It’s impossible to feel like a superstar in your own home if you don’t have the furniture to match – which is why splashing out on Celebrity recliner chairs is guaranteed to add a much needed sprinkle of glitz and glamour to any room in the home.

Available in a wide range of sizes and styles, these iconic recliners are perfect for taking the weight off your feet after a long day spent dodging the paparazzi – or for having a cup of tea before heading off to the supermarket.

Give the Front a Facelift

In the same way that no self-respecting Hollywood icon would be seen dead with flaking makeup or tired-looking skin, the front of your home should be an immaculate gateway, on hand to welcome friends, family and tourists on open top buses.

Some of the easiest ways to freshen up your facade include painting the front door a bold colour, giving your windows some TLC and making sure your front garden – and the pathway – looks like Alan Titchmarsh has had his hands on it.

Clear Out Your Clutter

Flick through OK! Magazine and it’s unlikely you’ll spot a rogue ironing board or child’s toy sneaking into the picture, as the stars’ homes are usually cleaner than a bar of soap taking a shower under an antibacterial waterfall.

Obviously, real life often gets in the way and your home is always going to be subject to the mess of everyday life – but this needn’t mean unnecessary clutter. Consequently, make sure you get rid of items that serve no purpose by donating them to your local charity shop or having a car boot sale.

Now it’s your turn …

Can you think of any other ways our readers can keep up with the Kardashian’s and make their homes more Hollywood than Halifax? Please let us know by leaving a comment below – we’d love to hear from you.

A Handy Guide to Decorating For Less

Your home is your castle, so it only makes sense that you would want it to be beautiful, practical and perfect for your unique personality and lifestyle. It is easy to find a wide variety of great ideas online, but all too often they cost more money than the average person can afford. Decorating a home shouldn’t break the bank. If you need to decorate for less, get off the expensive websites and try these five great suggestions instead.

1. Paint

It is amazing how something as simple as a coat of paint can completely transform the look of a room. If your home is in serious need of an update, try painting the walls a new color. Sky blue is perfect for creating a relaxing sanctuary, yellow is perfect for creating an upbeat and cheerful space and gray is perfect for a sophisticated, elegant gathering place. Be sure to try a few paint samples on the wall to test how the colors will look at various times of day, but do not be afraid to put color on the wall. Your room’s paint color is easy to change when you decide you want something new.

2. Repurpose

Once you have the perfect color on the walls, you are ready to add in the little decorative elements that make your home truly your own. Do not rush right out to the store, however; shop your home first. You may be surprised at what you find. Use an empty wine bottle as a unique vase for fresh flowers. Frame your children’s drawings on the wall for fun and colorful artwork. Use old sheets to make new curtains or old clothing to make new throw pillows. Stack old hardcover books next to an armchair to make a unique side table. The possibilities are endless.

3. Visit the Right Stores

If you decide you still need to buy a few more interesting pieces after you have finished raiding your own home, be sure to choose the right stores. Start by visiting pound shops and thrift stores. Keep an open mind and you will be amazed at the unique and interesting things you can find. Many items that look worn and dingy on the shelves would make perfect accent pieces with just a good cleaning and a coat of paint. Clearance sections, auctions and antique shops are a great place to find interesting and unique finds for less as well.

4. Have Something Custom Made

One of the best ways to create a beautiful and unique space for less is to have a key piece or two custom made. Hire a quality handyman in London to build a custom fireplace mantle, custom bookshelves or a custom coffee table for you. Your entire room does not have to be custom made or expensive. If you have one key piece that truly pops, it will make your entire room look amazing.

5. Less is More

As you start decorating and finding great deals and must-have pieces, keep in mind that “less is more” when it comes to home decorating. A room that is full of knick knacks is sure to look crowded, cluttered and messy. Instead of buying and using every interesting thing you find, choose a couple eye-catching pieces and spread them throughout the space, leaving plenty of white space for the eyes to rest. This will make sure people’s eyes are drawn to your best pieces, not left to roam around the room without a focal point.

Creating a beautiful and unique space does not have to be expensive. Try these five tips and achieve a look you love today!

Choosing the Right Walk in Shower For You

While most homes still contain at least one traditional bathtub, more and more families are opting to replace their tub with a walk in shower for the home. People love how walk in showers take up less space, how they look and how accessible they are. However, not every walk in shower is right for everyone. Here are a few ways to determine which walk in shower is right for you.

Assess Your Needs

The reason you want or need a walk in shower will have a large effect on the type of shower you choose. You might want to save space in a small bathroom. You may have trouble stepping in and out of the tub. You may have trouble lowering and raising yourself in and out of the bath. You may want a walk in shower purely for aesthetic reasons. Whatever the reason, there are plenty of great walk in shower options for you to choose from.

Review Your Options

There are three primary types of walk in showers: stand-alone showers, shower bathtub combinations and handicapped accessible showers. Shower bathtub combinations are the most popular, though stand-alone showers are quickly growing in popularity. Handicapped accessible showers generally have features such as grab bars, low thresholds or seats that make showering easier and safer. Showers can be enclosed with a door, privacy wall, curtain or nothing at all, and they come in all sorts of sizes and shapes.

You also have many bathtub options as well, if you choose to include one. You may want a traditional tub, or a large and contoured tub that will be more spacious and comfortable. You may even choose to put in a Jacuzzi or whirlpool. Alternately, you may skip the bathtub altogether.

Choose a Design Style

These days, showers are as highly customizable as the bathrooms that contain them. You can choose a particular theme or feel such as “spa” or “Zen.” You can choose between a variety of different shower materials such as metal, glass, tile and even wood. You can also choose the colors and finishes that you prefer.

Consider Adding Extra Features

Once you have decided on the basic layout and design of your shower, consider which extra features may be important to you. You may choose to have a removable showerhead for easier cleaning, or you may choose to have multiple showerheads. You may want to install grab bars and handrails to help you safely navigate in and out of the shower or a bench that will allow you to rest while showering. Non slip tiles or pads are another important feature to keep you safe in the shower.

Whether you want a stand-alone shower, a shower bathtub combination or a handicapped accessible shower, you have several options available to you. Take your time and choose just the right layout, design and features for you, and you are sure to have a bathtub that you can safely use and love for years to come.

Sources:

http://info.neals.com/bid/331911/4-Design-Options-for-Walk-in-Showers

Walk In Shower Designs


http://www.wisegeek.com/what-are-the-different-types-of-walk-in-showers.htm

How to Organize Your Closet?

Want to organize your closet efficiently? Well, as a matter of fact, it is not a one time job. You need to take into account certain things like the available space you have in the room, the amount of clothing you own and the type of lifestyle you lead. Getting organized a bit can help clear the clutter from your closet and keep it optimized at the same time.

Organize Your Closet – Steps

The following methods, tips, ideas and products will definitely help you to organize a closet the right way.

1. Plan the tools you need

The first step in organizing your closet will be to ensure that you have all the right supplies and tools on hand. Before you start, consider the items that you should have, including full length mirror (to decide whether to keep or toss any clothes), tape measure (to measure the space both hanging and shelving), and shopping bags (to transport clothing and accessories to your nearby donation center). Gather these items before you start. This will allow you to hit straight and get ready to dive into the job of organizing your closet.

2. Clean the Closet

Next, you are required to clean and clear the space. (While this activity is on, you may already start visualizing how you would organize your closet within the available space).

Take everything out of the closet including the closet organizers like trays, baskets, hangers, bins, accessories like scarves, handbags, shoes and clothes. Now, give your closet a good cleaning. Dust the hanging and shelving rods. Just run the swiffer or vacuum the floor and wipe down all of the bins and baskets.

3. Put the right things back

In order to keep the right clothes at the right places, please follow these steps in the same logical order.

3.1. Distinguish

To organize a closet, you need to distinguish shoes and clothing that you wear. In addition to this, you also have to consider those items that you need to get rid of. You can get things in place by following the best rule of organizing a closet – Just toss those items that you haven’t worn in a year.

If some clothes doesn’t fit you well, then it is time to say them good bye and get rid of them. Instead of hanging onto your skinny jeans until you lose a few pounds, it would be better to donate them to someone. And when you meet your goal weight, you can then treat yourself to a new pair of stylish jeans. The same rule is applicable to specialty clothing such as maternity wear. You may use your full length mirror to take a good look at those dresses that you may have overgrown. This (good) mindset plays a big role in help organizing your closet and more importantly cleaning up the mess.

3.2. Sort Clothes

Whether you are organizing a small closet or not, proper real estate management and optimization is necessary to get the tidying up job done neatly. To achieve this first sort your garments into separate piles. It is also important to highlight on what you wish to keep at first rather than on what you wish to toss.

You may stack and hang your sorted clothes in order now. Obviously, your daily wear and most used clothes should be hanging or kept near. Party wear or one-off usage kind of stuff go to one end or back side of the shelves.

3.3. Throw or Donate the rest

Finally, it’s time to pack all that you tossed either to the donation center or to the recycle bin.

4. Maintain and Shop wisely

It’s important that you consider maintaining the closet organization as a periodic activity. The more you work on the closet maintenance, the less time it will take to find clothes when you have less time in hand to get ready. Just go through the closet and then complete a fast makeover once in a month and then tackle the full process of re-organization and major cleaning twice a year. You can follow the schedules by season, by events or by important dates.

It is significant that you invest on an effective closet organization system which features coordinating drawers, adjustable drawers, hanging rods as well as shelves. Use the measuring tape to exactly measure the dimensions of things that you need to fill your closet. You can utilize all the available space and make everything attractive by shopping the right accessories for your closet thereby helping with the best closet maintenance.

And most importantly, think twice before you purchase new clothes!

15 Cheap and Effective Apartment Decoration Ideas

Interior designing and overall decoration of your home or apartment is usually a very expensive affair. Making an empty apartment a home is 1000s of dollars business usually. However, if you just moved into an apartment pretty much empty handed and do not want to spend too much along the same, you may consider these cheap decorating methods.

1. Garage sales
Picking up cheap used decorative items from garage sales is a great way to quickly fill your apartment with some of those necessary decoration items. During the home shifting season, make sure that you go around on garage sales every weekend until you have found all that stuff that you need for your apartment.

2. Dollar stores
Dollar stores can help you with unimaginable cheap decorative items for your home. It’s not that you get extra ordinary stuff there but some good plastic plants, small fancy lights, cheap craft items, murals etc can be spotted in such places.

3. Cheap DIY furniture
Furniture is the most basic interior decoration item but is usually expensive to buy brand new hardwood ones. Other than the garage sale options, you might want to check out some of those do-it-yourself furniture that can add a good dimension to your apartment pretty quickly.

4. Craigslist, Ebay and other Online classifieds
I must admit that I am a craigslist addict. No other online used stuff sales portal is as exciting as craigslist because it is highly localized and fast. Furniture, electrical appliances, lamp fittings, electronics – you name it, it’s all there on craigslist at throwaway prices.

5. Use your collectibles
If you have the habit of collecting stuff like bon china articles, needle work, clothe-paper craft, souvenirs or even bottles – it may all be useful for decorating a home in an inexpensive way. After all, they pile up and occupy space, why not make use of them in a better way? Recently, I saw a beautiful pattern created with beer bottles in one of the houses. It was simply awesome!

6. Draw colorful patterns on your walls
If you happen to move to a rented place or apartment recently, but don’t want to spent on painting the whole place, you may opt to paint certain colorful pattern to one or two walls alone to give those walls more focus. I have seen people creating easy geometric designs with multiple colors that go well with the rest of the decoration.

7. Use colorful (any color) curtains
Cheap window blinds can make your apartment look even cheaper or like cheap business places. Curtains are a great way to minimize the boring looks of your window walls and even creating a few folds around the blinds would make it look superb. You can use curtains on walls as well to reduce their plain appearance.

8. Use a couple of focus lamps, increase wattage of existing lighting
If you do not want to spend on new set of light fittings for your apartment, at least consider replacing the low wattage bulbs with brighter ones. Also, you may buy a couple of cheap focus lamps to divert the attention to whatever minimal wall fittings you might have.

9. Cheap floating shelves to fill walls
Floating shelves are cheaper – at the same time very effective – way of decorating your walls pretty quickly.

10. Add some flora
Adding a couple of live indoor plants will give your rooms the much needed green and organic feel which again helps your home look a lot better and plesant.

11. Consider painting one of the over-exposed walls
We already talked about wall patterns. Even if any pattern cannot be arrived at for your wall, you may just paint a theme wall in the room in a different but matching color to organize things around that particular wall. Theme walls, even without any pattern can be extremely attractive even without any major decorative items.

12. Wall murals
Wall murals offer a great way to furnish your apartment without spending much. They can be found in dollar starts, garage or yard sales.

13. Use wall stickers
Well, wall stickers are those amazing ready-made art work (big ones) that you can paste on your walls (ideally only one wall) and can dramatically add to the better look of the room.

14. Use focus lamps or tower lamps to divert attention
We already talked about focus lamps. In addition, tower lamps (pedestal lamps upward projecting) can help take the attention away from the floor and walls to the ceiling. If you want to highlight something beautiful, you should try cork flooring in Australia.

15. Use cheap and colorful floor rugs
Talking about diverting attention, you can use cheap and colorful floor rugs to divert the attention more to the floors than anywhere else. Use this focus diverting techniques on the wall, floor or ceiling to effectively do the focus management.

Hope these tips were helpful to you. Good luck with decorating your apartment!

How to make a Small room look Bigger?

Small rooms can give you a feel of discomfort or being confined. Fortunately, there are ways to make a small room look bigger than it actually is and, more importantly, avoid the cramped feeling with a few things taken care of in its design. We are talking about those small room decorating ideas that work without changing the physical structure of the room.

Small room ideas

If you want to pick three differentiators that can affect the look and feel of the room dramatically they will be the (1) color scheme (2) lighting and (3) furniture selection.

Room color scheme

For bigger looks, you need always go with a mono-chromatic color scheme for your entire room. This includes your walls as well as furnishings. Pastel, cool and lighter shades that reflect light are what we are looking for here.

The curtains and furniture in the room should also use complementing light shades.

The room can look a bit longer, if you paint vertical stripes on the wall that’s opposite to the main entry door. Again, you have to choose a complementing light shade to paint stripes.

Ambient light

Allowing a lot of natural light to enter the room will make it look bigger. You need to consider larger windows and glass panes for a smaller room. Moreover, you need to make sure that the curtains and door frames do not obstruct light. Thin door frames and transparent curtains would work wonders.

Usage of mirrors – either wall fixed mirrors or large framed mirrors kept slanting on the wall and floor – will not only reflect more light but also add depth to a room.

Another way to improve the depth and continuity of a small room is to provide see through walls and partitions with adjacent rooms. This really makes a better comfort feel for anyone entering the small room.

When you pick lamps and shades for a small room, you have to choose things that divert your attention from the cramped floor space to the ceiling or sideways. Low hanging lamps, array of lamps in a line etc can help our cause.

Furniture and fittings

A small room cannot have the full set of furniture each of which is meant for an individual purpose. The idea should be to use combination furniture that do more than one task. E.g. Chest drawers with makeup mirrors or attached bookshelves would combine the needs and take lesser floor space.

For small rooms, one should look for moving as many furniture onto the wall and overhead but without obstructing lamp shades and natural lights. This type of furniture should be very light in color as well so that they do not actually make the room even smaller. Further, open furniture sets (e.g. open bookshelves and semi-open wardrobes) are highly suitable for small rooms and can enhance the depth. Corner units are another way to improve space and floor definition of the room.

When it comes to other accessories, you have to reduce the number of accessories but go for the right dimension. For example, instead of an array of small wall paintings, a single bigger painting centered on the wall will make the available wall space look bigger.

Usage of glass furniture such as glass dining table or center table is another way of creating a feel of free space than actually available while the furniture still serve the purpose.

If you found these small room design tips useful, please feel free to share the same with your friends using the social icons below.