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Three Common Home Lighting Mistakes To Avoid In Your Lighting Renovation

Posted by on 4:36 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Three Common Home Lighting Mistakes To Avoid In Your Lighting Renovation

Lighting is one of the most versatile features inside your home, and it can really make or break the atmosphere. Insufficient lighting can leave your home too dim and dark feeling, while lighting that’s too bright can be harsh and uninviting. If you really want to make the most of your living space, here are a few common mistakes to avoid when you’re investing in new lighting. Improper Sizing For Your Light Fixtures One of the most common mistakes that you can make with home lighting fixtures is sizing them incorrectly. For example, a large, intricate chandelier is going to be too much in a small dining room, while a single small overhead light will be insufficient for a large, open room with high ceilings. If you want to be sure that you are getting the right sizes for each room, the best thing to do is work with a lighting professional from the start. He or she can help you determine the best size for fixtures in each room, which will ensure that your lighting is consistent and balanced throughout the house. No Ability To Control The Lighting When it comes to household lighting, the more control you have over it, the more comfortable your home is going to feel. If your lights don’t have dimmer switches, automation or other features, it makes it harder for you to control the light in your home. Dimmer switches are a great way to adjust lighting with ease. These controls allow you to respond to changes in outdoor lighting, which is important in rooms with lots of windows. Timers and other home automation can allow you to control your lighting even when you’re not home. This is great for discouraging burglars. If you’re investing in lighting upgrades, it’s a great time to take complete control of your lights. Not Considering Energy Efficiency Especially when you’re upgrading your home’s lighting through a significant renovation project, this is the time to think about energy efficiency. For example, LED bulbs save a couple hundred kilowatt hours when compared to CFL bulbs and have an average lifespan of nearly 50,000 hours. If you’re looking to get more bang for your buck, LED lighting is a great way to go. The lights in your home are key to your comfort level. They can also have a significant effect on your energy costs. Understanding these common mistakes in home lighting choices can help you avoid them when you’re planning your lighting upgrades. Talk with a lighting specialist today about the best fixtures for your home and the possibility of investing in LED lights. Contact a business, such as Outdoor Accents, for more...

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Softer Is Better: 4 Tips To Keep Your Water Softener Working Properly

Posted by on 10:51 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Softer Is Better: 4 Tips To Keep Your Water Softener Working Properly

If you live in an area that has hard water, a water softener can be a real life saver. Water softeners remove harsh minerals that can damage your plumbing and water-using appliances. Another benefit of having a water softener is that you won’t need to use as much bath soap or laundry and dish detergent. To remove the minerals properly, your water softener needs to be in good working order. Here are four quick steps to properly maintain your water softener. Crush the Salt Bridges To make sure your water softener is working properly, you should inspect the salt bed at least once a week. If your softener is working properly, you should be able to see the salt level decreasing at each weekly inspection. If you haven’t seen the level decrease in at least a week, your tank may have developed a salt bridge. This happens when the upper layer of salt hardens and forms a crust over the salt below. When that happens, the salt isn’t processed properly, and your water doesn’t get softened. Simply force a broom handle through the salt crust and move it around vigorously to break up the salt. The salt will now process properly. Add Fresh Salt If you’ve been keeping your tank filled with salt, you might be creating problems. You should only refill your salt once the tank is nearly empty. Once the tank is nearly empty, add fresh salt to about the two thirds full level. Waiting until the tank is nearly empty, and only filling your tank about 2/3’s of the way, will help prevent salt bridges. Clean the Resin Bed When you had your water softener installed, you probably had your water tested. If your water tested positive for high iron content, you should add resin bed cleaner to your tank at least once a year. A dirty resin bed will be ineffective at removing iron from your water. You can purchase resin bed cleaner at most home improvement centers, or from your water softener distributor. Be sure to follow the instructions on the label when using your resin bed cleaner. Power Outages Require a Reset Your water softener is designed to clean and recharge overnight. However, if you’ve recently experienced a prolonged power outage, you should reset your water softener. Power outages can cause an error in your cleaning and recharge settings, which means your system may recharge too often or not enough after a power outage. Your owner’s manual will have complete instructions for how to reset your particular model. If you have a water softener, you want to keep it working properly. Use the easy-to-follow tips provided above to keep your water softener in good working order. For more information, contact companies like Johnson Water...

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Fabric Scrap Craft Ideas

Posted by on 9:05 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Fabric Scrap Craft Ideas

If you’ve completed a big project, such as making curtains or a piece of clothing, and still have fabric leftover, you can put it to good use. No matter what size or shape the fabric scrap is, you’ll be able to transform it into a one-of-a-kind item. Even if you aren’t sure what to do with leftover fabric right away, save it for when craft inspiration strikes. Leftover Fabric Craft Ideas:  1. A Festive Garland This project will work especially well if you have several pieces of fabric in different colors and patterns. Simply cut the fabric into similar-size pieces and shapes, or keep them all the same for a more uniform look. Then, either sew or glue the pieces to a long, wide ribbon and hang the craft across a doorway or mantle. Some garland ideas include alternating red and green fabric pieces for Christmas decor, or purple, green and gold pieces for a Mardi Gras celebration. 2. Unique Bookmarks If you have small fabric scraps left, use them to cover rectangular pieces of heavy-duty cardboard to create crafty bookmarks. These will make ideal gifts for all of the book lovers in your life. 3. Shabby Chic-Inspired Wreath You can use small pieces of scrap fabric to make a boutique-worthy wreath to hang on your front door or any wall in your home. Start by cutting the fabric into thin ribbons. The more the colors and patterns contrast, the better this shabby chic craft will look.  Tie the fabric ribbons around a wire wreath base, completely covering it. Knot each piece in the center, leaving equal amounts at the top and bottom. You can use just as many fabric ribbons as you need to cover the base, or add more to create a fuller look. 4. Fabric-Covered Bangle Bracelets  Give your tired wood or plastic bangle bracelets an overhaul with the help of fabric. To start, cut a piece of fabric into a long, thin strip and place a dab of hot glue on one end. Press the glue onto the inside of the bracelet until it dries, and then begin wrapping the strip around the bracelet, slightly overlapping the edges as you go.  If the strip is too long, simply cut it and then glue the other end to the inside of the bracelet to secure it into place. If you made a dress or other clothing item, you can use the leftover fabric to make a coordinating...

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3 Economical Ways To Improve Your Window Insulation During Winter

Posted by on 12:36 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Economical Ways To Improve Your Window Insulation During Winter

Keeping your windows tightly sealed is essential to keeping out cold drafts out of your home during winter. Any cracks or gaps in the windows could allow precious heated air to escape, raising your energy bill substantially.  If you have old, drafty windows, consider replacing them with new ones that are more energy efficient. However, if your budget only includes improving what you have other than purchasing new window replacements, read on for simple tricks that could help you insulate your windows this winter. Install honeycomb shades Honeycomb shades can provide effective insulation for your windows. These window treatments are made of layers of fabric designed to form tiny pockets that effectively trap outdoor air, making you home warm and comfy. The design is often so effective that you can instantly feel the cold breeze disappear from inside the windows due to the incredible barrier the shades form between your home and the outside. In fact, it is advisable to hang these shades a couple of inches from your window glass, as they could hold out cold air too close to the glass and cause an ice buildup. Plastic window insulation film Installing window insulation film on your drafty windows can help seal them tight during the cold season. These plastic films are installed inside your windows to add an extra barrier against the elements and help keep your home warm. Before installing an insulation film kit, wash the windows thoroughly to get rid of any dirt particles that could pierce the delicate film. You should then attach the double-sided adhesive tape usually included in the kit around the window edges and stick the window film to the adhesive, covering the entire window surface. The insulation film will prevent your windows from opening until it is removed, so be sure to only install it on windows you don’t usually open during winter such as those in the attic and basement. Caulking Applying a layer of caulk on any cracks and gaps around your windows can be an effective way of preventing cold air from seeping into your home this winter. To ensure you seal any gaps effectively, be sure to use a knife to remove any old caulking around the windows before applying a new layer. Use a caulking gun and some quality paintable interior caulk to cover all visible cracks in the inside of your windows. If you have broken or missing windows, it would be best to have them replaced with new panes to help keep your home warm. For more information, contact a company like Ken Caryl Glass,...

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Giving Your Bedroom A Makeover: Simple Ideas For You

Posted by on 3:43 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Giving Your Bedroom A Makeover: Simple Ideas For You

When you get home in the evening and head to your bedroom to relax and unwind, the last thing you want is to be bored or unsatisfied with the way your room looks. Maybe you have outgrown your current decor or maybe you just never got to design the room the way you wanted it in the first place. Whatever the case may be, there are some simple yet highly effective ways that you can give your bedroom a little makeover without having to revamp and change absolutely everything. Get to know some of these ways and get started on your bedroom makeover as soon as possible. Change Up Your Window Treatments One thing that you can quickly and easily change in your bedroom is the appearance of your windows. While you may not think that changing your window treatments and coverings will make a big difference in the overall aesthetic of a room, they really do make all the difference in the world. Taking down old curtains and blinds and replacing them with cordless Roman or cellular window shades can make a major difference. Shades can provide you with more control over how much light gets in through your window and can be custom fit to ensure no light gets through when they are completely closed. Choosing the cordless option for window shades will also do away with tangled cords and other accessories hanging on or around your windows taking up space. These shades will make your room more streamlined and less cluttered. There are also many color options and designs to choose from. Paint an Accent Wall While repainting your entire bedroom would be a major undertaking, painting a single accent wall is doable without too much disruption to the room. Rather than move all of your furniture and other possessions out of the room, you just need to clear off the space around one wall. You will want to cover any of your possessions that are in range of being splashed with the paint as well as the carpeting or floor space that you cleared with a drop cloth or plastic. Then you can quickly tape off and paint your accent wall in a fun, bold color. Creating this single focal point in your bedroom can completely change the tone and mood of your bedroom without having to make many, if any, other changes in the process. With these ideas in mind, you can get started giving your bedroom a makeover and revitalize your space as soon as...

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Tips For Hanging Curtains In Your Home

Posted by on 11:17 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Tips For Hanging Curtains In Your Home

Hanging curtains in your home is fairly simple. You just drill a few holes and add a curtain rod, right? It can be this simple, or you can add other decorative elements to hang your curtains to give them some more appeal and maybe even make your curtains look a little more expensive. See below for some helpful tips on how to hang your curtains. Curtain Rod Placement When hanging curtain rods, be sure to hang them at least six inches higher than the window casing and extend your curtains so they are three to four inches wider than the outside of the window casing.. This helps make your windows appear larger and adds height to any room. It also brings in plenty of light, which will also help make rooms feel more spacious. To help you drill the holes for your curtain rods, you can create a drill guide out of cardboard. Simply mark the holes on the cardboard, then cut out a ninety degree angle on the cardboard that will sit on the window casing. Drill through the cardboard into the wall with the cardboard on your window casing. Then flip the cardboard over and place it on the other corner of the window casing to drill holes on the other side. This way you know the holes are the same on both sides; no need to drill holes over and over again, or try and fumble with a level and measuring tape. Curtain Rod Alternatives Rather than using a simple curtain rod, try thinking of other ways to hang up your curtains. See below for curtain rod alternatives. Coat Hooks. Use a handful of coat hooks along your wall and hang up your curtains by attaching drapery clips to the curtains and hanging the circle portion of the clips on the hooks. You can also use stick-on hooks for light-weight curtains if you don’t want to put holes in your walls. Curved Shower Curtain Rod. Add a curved shower curtain rod to a window to give it dramatic appeal. It also helps to make the window appear larger. Bungee Cord. Use a small bungee cord behind your curtain rod to give you that second curtain rod without the big price tag. A small bungee cord can be invisible behind your curtain rod, nobody will even see it. Tension Rod. For a kitchen window, add a tension rod between your kitchen cabinets to help drape your small window valance to look like a cafe awning.  To help your curtain pleats lay straight all the way down, you can add curtain weights or create your own using paperclips with pennies glued to them. Simply push the paperclip/penny into the bottom hem of the curtain leaving only one prong exposed outside of the curtain. This will help hold your curtains in place, so the pleats lay properly all the way down your curtain. Hanging your curtains is simple, but giving them a more dramatic or expensive look takes a little more work. If you’re in need of new draperies or curtains, consider contacting a specialist, such as Frieda Ross Draperies, Blinds and...

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How You Can Control Mice Population In Your Home By Learning About Their Habits And Abilities

Posted by on 6:03 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How You Can Control Mice Population In Your Home By Learning About Their Habits And Abilities

It’s small wonder that house mice are so difficult to control. These pests are known for their climbing abilities. They’ll scuttle away from you at fast speeds as they escape vertically while climbing on bumpy surfaces. If you try to chase them with a stick or broom on horizontal surface, they’ll take off horizontally and squirm through very tiny spaces just when you think you have them cornered. There are things you can do to control their increasing population when you learn about their habits and abilities. Food That Mice Eat House mice are not finicky about the food they want. They’ll eat a wide variety of foods and they have a liking for cereal. Not only do they eat human food that you don’t put away, but they also eat your pet’s food that is not covered. You can stop house mice from inhabiting your space by not leaving food out in areas of your kitchen and elsewhere in your home where mice can feast on all kinds of food items. Don’t Give House Mice Shelter Cool fall weather and open doors are perfect conditions that invite mice into your home. They are looking for warmth around that time of the year. Control their entry into your home. You should consider using a baiting method to get rid of mice when it’s evident there are increasing numbers of them in your home. It might be best to have an experienced professional pest control technician launch the baiting method in your home. Experts suggest that if you decide to perform the baiting yourself, you should place the bait boxes next to walls so that the box openings are close to the wall. You should also take time to read and follow the baiting instructions on the box, they advise. When the baiting control period ends, you must remember to get rid of any bait leftovers that were not eaten by the mice and collect all dead mice and bag them for household garbage collection, as recommended by the website article. Plugging Up Holes And Cracks in Your Home Make sure that all your window screens and windows close tightly without leaving gaps that could give mice easy entry into your home. Remember that they can squirm their way into your home through really tiny spaces. The website recommends that you use steel wool to plug up any holes in foundation areas of your home and use metal or concrete material to seal cracks that accommodate water pipe entry through your home’s foundation. Click here to learn more about mice...

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What’s Hanging At The Office? Replace Old Drapery Treatments To Refresh And Revive A Stale Work Place

Posted by on 3:04 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What’s Hanging At The Office? Replace Old Drapery Treatments To Refresh And Revive A Stale Work Place

A simple way to boost productivity and job satisfaction is to redecorate your office to create a more pleasant work atmosphere. One of the most important considerations is the style of window treatments chosen for the space. Here are some factors to consider when selecting your new office drapery: Employ natural light if at all possible. Light affects emotions and energy levels, so the lack of natural light in an office setting could be detrimental to focus and productivity. If there are windows that open to natural sunlight in the office, use window treatments that allow the rays to stream in freely. If no natural light is accessible, choose drapes that reflect artificial light in a pleasant way. If the view out of a window isn’t so hot, but you want the sunshine anyway, use shades or blinds that cover the lower half of windows and frame them with attractive drapes that can be closed when you don’t want the bright light. Use sheer curtain panels where you need more privacy but still want some natural light to shine through. Another option is to install Roman shades made of custom fabric that can be raised and lowered throughout the day to accommodate changing sunlight patterns. Use colored drapes to change the mood. While each person in an office will have his or her own individual reaction to various hues, most people will have predictable responses to certain colors. Blues and greens are soothing colors, and make great drapery colors when you desire more calm and order in the workplace. Red is an energizing color that keeps people on their toes, and it’s a good choice in offices where quick thinking and deadlines are priorities. The color yellow is a smart option for window treatments in ad agencies and artists’ studios since it enhances creativity. To boost enthusiasm in the office, use drapes or curtains in orange. If you’re trying to foster a sense of community in a tense office, pink draperies may reduce aggression and isolation. Use texture and scale to reduce office discomfort. The right window treatment materials and styles will open up cramped rooms and reduce feelings of claustrophobia. It’s best to consult with a custom drapery professional to learn about the fabrics and textures that will reduce noise in your specific environment. They know the tricks to make the most of your rooms using perspective and scale to make spaces seem larger and provide access to more light. If your office has cold or hot spots due to drafty windows in winter or overly-exposed windows in summer, choose drapes backed with thermal insulation or heat-resistant lining to make offices more comfortable for employees. Office staff with allergies or chemical sensitivities will appreciate drapery treatments crafted out of hypoallergenic and organic fabrics. A wise choice in office window treatments sets the tone for the rest of your business. Choose high-quality drapes and blinds in fade-resistant materials that will stand up to daily use and still look stylish and sharp. Visit a website like http://www.sylvansdrapesandblinds.com for more...

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This Little Light Of Mine: 5 Reasons To Let Lanterns Shine In Your Home

Posted by on 7:16 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on This Little Light Of Mine: 5 Reasons To Let Lanterns Shine In Your Home

When you think of a lantern, you might think about camping in the summer warmth. You might think of days spent on the back porch, illuminated by a single bulb in a lantern. You might not even consider putting a lantern inside your home, replacing fluorescent light bulbs or dull lamps. The truth is, you can definitely do that. Consider these five reasons to highlight the warmth of your home with the glow of a cheap lantern online. 1. Lanterns are romantic. If you are trying to set the mood of a room, you can’t go wrong with some ambient lanterns. Set up lanterns on end tables, creating a soft glow in your living room. Add them to a bookshelf or staircase to create a mellow atmosphere and a soft glow. 2. Lanterns are great for parties and get-togethers. There are few pieces you use in your home that are perfect for so many different events. Lanterns are typically sturdy, giving you the ability to move them around and use them outside when you are having a special event. Use lanterns to light the path to your door or as centerpieces for your dining tables. Lanterns are quite versatile. 3. Lanterns fit any decor. With so many different lanterns available, you can choose designs that are suitable for just about any type of room. You will find lanterns whether your house is adorned with cowboys, clowns, chickens, or polka dots. They work well as dining room centerpieces or bathroom accessories, making them one of the most versatile home decorations out there. 4. Lanterns help lower your electric bill. Can you really go wrong paying less on electricity? Not only are you improving the look and feel of your home, but you are also spending less and getting a more appropriate lighting situation. Why use a bulb in your office when a small lantern will do the trick? 5. Lanterns can bring other pieces to life. Are you trying to show off a new statue or other decoration that you recently purchased? Lanterns can highlight the best features of new pieces in your home, bringing them to life for guests. Place a lantern behind or next to your favorite art piece as a way to naturally guide the eye toward it. Once you begin your search for affordable lanterns, you will have no trouble finding pieces that you love. The real trouble is likely in choosing which of your favorites you want to...

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Two Natural, Homemade Cleaners That Remove Pet Odors From Your Home

Posted by on 11:59 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Two Natural, Homemade Cleaners That Remove Pet Odors From Your Home

Are you having trouble getting pet urine smells out of your furniture or specific spots on your carpet or rugs? If so, you aren’t alone. Pet owners regularly struggle with removing pet odors from their homes. However, there are some simple solutions that pet owners often overlook or don’t know about. Learn how to make and use natural homemade cleaners that remove odors caused by pet urine.      Vinegar and Baking Soda Spray Cleaner A vinegar and baking soda spray is great to use on stained areas of your carpet or furniture. White vinegar has the ability to get rid of older stains and baking soda is a natural deodorizer, so you can use this mixture to get rid of old or new urine stains. What you need: Large glass measuring cup 2 cups of warm water 2 cups of white vinegar 4 tablespoons of baking soda Mixing spoon Empty spray bottle A clean rag or paper towels Directions: Combine two cups of warm water and two cups of white vinegar in your measuring cup. Add four tablespoons of baking soda, slowly so that it doesn’t fizz. Let the mixture settle for a few minutes. Then stir gently to combine the ingredients. Slowly, pour the mixture into an empty spray bottle. How to use vinegar and baking soda spray: Use a rag or paper towel to blot the area that you’re cleaning. You want to remove as much of the urine as possible. Spray your vinegar and baking soda mixture on the area, thoroughly, and let it sit for five minutes. Use a clean rag or paper towels to gently rub and blot the area removing the rest of the urine. Baking Soda and Hydrogen Peroxide Mixture Hydrogen peroxide breaks down pet urine so that it’s easily removed from carpet or fabric. When you combine hydrogen peroxide with baking soda, you have a cleaner that removes both stains and odors easily. You will need: 1/2-cup of three percent hydrogen peroxide 1 teaspoon of dish soap A medium-sized bowl Paper towels 1 cup of baking soda Scrub brush Directions: Combine 1/2-cup of three percent hydrogen peroxide with one teaspoon of dish soap in a medium-sized bowl. Fill a one-cup-sized measuring cup with baking soda. Take your bowl, measuring cup of baking soda, and paper towels to the area that you’re cleaning. How to use hydrogen peroxide and baking soda to clean pet urine stains: Use paper towels to blot up as much of the urine as possible. When you can’t pull any more urine from the carpet, cover the stained area with baking soda. Slowly, pour the hydrogen peroxide and dish soap mixture over the stain and the baking soda. Use a scrub brush to scrub the mixture into the carpet. Then, let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Vacuum the cleaned area thoroughly. Removing pet urine odors from your carpet, rug, or other fabrics in your home isn’t difficult. And, the best part is all you need are a few common household items to get the job done. For further assistance, contact a local pet odor removal company, such as Chem Dry...

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