BATHROOM DESIGN TRENDS TO LOOK OUT FOR

BATHROOM DESIGN TRENDS TO LOOK OUT FOR

Long gone are the days when bathrooms were seen as nothing but places which you needed to have at home, deprived of almost anything which would improve its aesthetics. The only focus was on functionality, with little attempt at making such places pleasant to be in.

Whether we like it or not, things have changed a lot. Today’s bathroom is a potential place of luxury, which increases the value of your home like no other room except, perhaps, the kitchen. So, what are the modern trends in bathroom design?

INTRODUCTION OF HIGH-TECH

Built-in audio systems are pretty standard and there are many options for listening to music while having a shower or a bath. Some more advanced features make it possible to answer the phone from your shower booth, without interrupting your shower. Speaking of showers, the latest designs also allow us to regulate the water pressure and temperature, and select our favorite mood-enhancing color just by using an LCD screen mounted on the wall.

While having a relaxing bath, you may wish to treat yourself to a nice cool drink from a tub-side refrigerator. However, the innovative use of cooling equipment doesn’t end there. Apart from cooling beverages, some state-of-the-art medicine cabinets also keep your nail polish, organic skin products and medications cold.

SAVING WATER

The increasingly strict standards related to energy and water consumption have forced manufacturers to come up with ideas that would reduce the use, but provide the same or even better quality. Luckily, developments in various fields of industry have brought about many new options for your bathroom.

For example, low-flow toilets and faucets significantly reduce the amount of water used, thus lowering your utility bill significantly. Also, low-flow aerators can now be easily installed on both old and new faucets, which means you don’t need to change the whole fixture.

Another useful feature is an activation sensor, which is also supposed to contribute to reducing the water waste. Similarly, some contemporary shower heads can actually regulate water droplet size and speed, spray coverage and temperature, thus giving you the good old feeling with far less water used.

FURNITURE DESIGN

The idea is to go for a minimalist look and conceal as much as possible. Sliding panels are used to hide various fixtures and provide new functions, such as those of a powder room bench or a surface to lay on and sunbathe.

Cabinets are designed to revolve 180-degrees in order to provide easy storage access, while shower seats, towel bars and walk-in tubs are no longer aiming to provide only functionality, but they are quite stylish, as well.

Finally, hand grips are designed not only to provide safety, but the materials used (chrome and brushed nickel) give them the contemporary look which suits pretty much any bath design, while more and more companies are producing foldaway seats for showers with limited space.

TILES, WONDERFUL TILES

Most modern bathroom designs are aiming to create a spa-like atmosphere, both in terms of the feeling you get and the aesthetic component. In order to achieve that, large tiles are used and the most popular look is metal. Some manufacturers combine traditional ceramic tiles with metallic granules and the result is a clean, industrial look.

So, as you can see, the trends are developing in two major directions. The first one is related to efficiency and environment-friendliness. Everything is done to minimize the unnecessary waste of energy and water, thus reducing your utility bill.

Another direction is the appearance. Clean, simple lines are used to create a minimalist look, while options to conceal fixtures that are not in use are fully exploited. The use of color and lights is there only to enhance the spa-like atmosphere, which is the ultimate goal of modern bathroom design.

Guest Contributor, Lillian Connors

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Small Business Saturday

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Do you remember when you were young and all the businesses around town were locally owned and operated? The ice cream shop at the corner, was owned by your friend’s father. The hardware store was owned by your neighbor. The pizza parlor at the train station was owned by your father’s best friend. And every single small shop in our downtown area knew everyone’s name. As far as we’ve come in life, losing stuff like this in our town makes me sad. I love knowing everyone around town.

Bigger and Better. They introduced us to bigger stores and better deals. The bigger stores carry everything you need at half the price. It all seemed great at first, until all the smaller stores and small businesses started going out of business. Not only did it hurt the stores, it hurt the people we knew. They had to move to other towns to find work. It broke up friendships and unity.

Bigger isn’t always better. Instead of using manufacturer in America, they are taking all these jobs overseas. Factory, after factory have had to close because they lost all their jobs to companies overseas. The reason everything is cheaper is because it costs them pennies to make. I’ve read and watched documentaries on what it’s like for people overseas who work at these factories. They’re barely making a few dollars a day. They must live in the dormitory owned by the company they work for, which in turn they must pay rent to the same company. Basically, since they can’t live outside the factory’s community, all the money they are making at these factories is taken back to pay for their stay. It’s sad.

We all want to save a few dollars when we purchase something. We need to learn of the repercussion of choosing larger stores, over a locally owned business. There are statistics of how the money spent locally, 63% stays local. Money spent on non-local business, only 43% stays local. Wouldn’t you rather help your community? You can’t blame it on anybody else, when the value of your community starts going down, when the value of your home starts depreciating. Have you driven down your main street? Or your downtown in your town? Are there a lot of empty store fronts? Is it too late to start helping the businesses in your community before they are all gone?

Small Business Saturday was started by American Express. It is the Saturday right after Thanksgiving. American Express realized the importance of small businesses and they knew how much power they had, so they decided to put it to good use. Small Businesses across America are grateful for the attention American Express has brought to all these locally owned stores. I might not be as big as American Express, but I will make a difference by spending my money at restaurants, shops, and stores that are locally owned in my community.

I love my community! I love the town I live in!

 

DIY THANKSGIVING DECORATIONS

Thanksgiving is crammed between Halloween and Christmas and hardly gets the attention it deserves. Décor often switches from cobwebs and pumpkins to garlands and Christmas trees, giving no thought to the holiday that lies in between. In reality, it’s impractical to spend lots of money on decorations that can only be used for a few weeks out of the year. Luckily there are a variety of things that can be done to reuse some of the decorations you already have (even ones you might not be aware of). There’s an abundance of unique, creative ideas floating around cyberspace, but we’ve saved you the hassle of searching by compiling this list of our top seven.

1.    Festive Candle Holders
Hollow out the center of your small pumpkins or apples (it’s done easiest with a drill). Use them to make candle holders, and embellish the base of the candle with leaves, berries, mini pine cones or whatever else you find lying around. Try grouping a few together and using them as a centerpiece for your big feast.

2.    Candy Corn Flower Pot
Fill a glass jar or trifle dish with a bag of candy corn, and use it as a base to arrange several flowers. The corn is a festive tribute to the Indians, and the plant will add a little greenery. Be creative when you plant selection – add some fall leaves, fresh flowers, or even an arrangement of twigs.

3.    Fall Leaf Lantern
Add a little ambiance to your room by creating a lantern with leaves you’ve gathered from outside. Start by pressing the leaves, to get them nice and flat.   Then glue them to a clean, glass jar using Modge Podge. Wait 20 minutes for it to dry and then layer another coat of Modge Podge on top of the leaves to seal them. Lastly, place a candle in the jar and your lantern is complete. Adding a variety of leaf colors looks best and adds a subtle, warm glow to any room.

4.    Metallic Pumpkins and Gourds
Give all your pumpkins, squash, and gourds a makeover by coating them in metallic or glitter spray paint. Shades of gold, bronze, and sunset orange are perfect for Thanksgiving, and the sparkly luster adds a regal air.   Arrange your finished beauties in a large glass tumbler, apothecary jar, or atop a cake stand to complete the look. If you’d like to take it a step further, paint pumpkin stems brown to really make them pop.

5.         Colored Pine Cones
Nothing says fall quite like pine cones, and they can be a stunning decorative piece when given a coat of paint. A selection of contrasting fall-hued colors look beautiful on an entry table. Pick up a combination of small spray paint cans in maroon, gold, dark brown, sunset orange, mustard yellow, mossy green, or cream, and color pine cones to your heart’s content. Be creative with color combinations – you can’t go wrong! Cones can be displayed in a large bowl, glass vase, or even strung as a garland.

6.    Pressed Leaf Art
Display the beauty of the outdoors by creating focal pieces with colorful fall leaves. Press leaves between books, and wait until leaves are fully dry. Place the pressed leaves between double sided glass frames to accentuate their silhouettes and bold colors. The simplicity of this decoration creates a tranquil, relaxing environment.

 7.    Corn Wreath
There are a couple different options for corn wreaths, depending on the look you’re going for and the amount of money you want to spend. You can make your wreath out of candy corn or Indian corn.   The candy corn wreath is simply a Styrofoam wreath covered in black duct tape with candy corn attached by a hot glue gun. Hang the wreath with a giant brown or red ribbon to give a Thanksgiving vibe.   The Indian corn wreath is even easier. Purchase a straw wreath and hot glue the corn to a straw wreath with the husks pointing outward.

Decorating for Thanksgiving can be easy and frugal when you take advantage of items you already have around the house or the yard. What better way to celebrate the season of thanks than the beauty of the outdoors? So open your mind, take a walk around the block, and visualize what you can create.

Guest Contributor,

Article By Anastasiya Johnson
Anastasiya is an interior designer and smart home planner for http://hdhomeautomationsystems.com/. When she is not planning out smart homes she is spending time with her husband and two kids.

 

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19 STEPS TO GETTING YOUR HOME READY FOR YOUR THANKSGIVING GUESTS

Getting Your Home Ready for Thanksgiving

Are you having family and friends over for Thanksgiving? Did you forget to include cleaning in your schedule? Let me guess, you’ve been busy looking all over for perfect recipes. That is fine, we all do that. But, somewhere between now and Thursday morning, you need to clean your house from top to bottom. It’s not easy when you have kids, a husband who thinks everything magically cleans itself, and a puppy who is too busy barking at everyone that passes by your house (yes, my puppy sits on her throne by the window and barks at anything and everything).

I completely understand where you’re coming from. After working all day, it’s hard to have any energy left to tend to your home. Nobody is judging, I’m here to help.

Just to scare you, a made you a calendar of where we are today, and how quickly Thanksgiving is approaching.

Look around, how dirty is your house?

If you only have 30 minutes to Clean.

1.       Clean your main bathroom

2.       Clean your kitchen

3.       Clean your dining room

4.       Turn a few candles on

IF YOU ONLY HAVE 2 HOURS TO CLEAN.

1.       Clean your main bathroom and a guest bathroom

2.       Clean your kitchen

3.       Clean your dining room

4.       Clean your living room

5.       Clean your fridge

6.       Turn candles on

IF YOU HAVE 6 HOURS TO CLEAN.

  1. Clean all your bathrooms
  2. Clean your kitchen
  3. Make sure you scrub your oven, inside and out
  4. Clean the inside of your fridge
  5. Clean your dining room, make it inviting.
  6. Clean and dust off your living room. Make sure you dust everything. Your mother-in-law sure loves to check that mantel
  7. Clean the fire place
  8. Clean the bar area
  9. Clean the kids room
  10. Clean the bed rooms
  11. Clean the guest room
  12. Clean your office
  13. Walk around your house and dust off every curtain
  14. Clean the ceiling fans
  15. Clean the kids play area
  16. Clean the front and back of the outside of the house
  17. Add Holiday decorations
  18. Add fresh cut flowers throughout the house
  19. Add candles in every common area

 

You did everything you could. Don’t worry, it looks great.

 


DON’T FORGET TO MAKE A LITTLE BAR AREA.

Holiday Bar Cart

  • Wine, red and white
  • Champagne, please chill
  • Vodka
  • Whiskey
  • Scotch
  • Rum
  • Soda Water
  • Tonic
  • Coke/Diet Coke
  • Ginger Ale
  • Lemon wedges
  • Cherries
  • Orange Wedges
  •  Ice
  •  Wine Glasses
  •  Champagne Flute
  •  Rocks Glasses

Turn on some holiday music for ambiance.

If you have Comcast, it’s channel 741. They also have holiday music on On Demand. Or, turn on your Pandora for great Holiday tunes. Zero excuse for not having Holiday Tunes playing in the background.

If everything goes to plan, everyone will be having too much fun to notice anything you forgot or didn’t get to clean in time.

Now go enjoy yourself.

Happy Thanksgiving

 

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Top Ways To Deal With Blocked Drains And Get Some Relief

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Top Ways to Deal with Blocked Drains and Get Some Relief

As the drain is an important outlet in your home, blockage can cause a great deal of inconvenience to any homeowner. With the condition of the blocked drains, even the sink and shower water drains slowly. Even the water in the toilet might rise when the toilet is flushed. The combination of these things might result in a foul smell throughout the home and the surrounding. Therefore, it is important to clear the blocks and clogs in the drain at the earliest. If you make efforts to clean your drain regularly, chances are that you will not have to face any inconvenience with your drain.

Causes of Blockage

Prior to anything, you will have to understand the cause of blocked drains.This in turn might help you to prevent those conditions in the drain.

·       Oil and greases are often the main cause for blockage. Unlike water, oils stick to the inside of the pipes, and over time these accumulate to cause blockage.

·       At times, foreign substances often get stuck into the drains causing a block. Hair is one of most common substance that might accumulate and block the drain.

·       If the drains are exposed, dry leaves often fall and get accumulated in the drain. This is also a source of blockage of the drain.

·       At times, the slopes of the pipes affect the flow of waste from the drain into the sewer line.

·       If the pipes are not installed correctly, the pipes might get misaligned resulting in poor drainage. In the course of time, it will result in blocking of the drains.

·       Sometimes, the pipes might break down and the drain might collapse completely.

Now that you know some of the common causes of blockage, you should try to prevent them, which will cause less hassle.

Clearing A Clogged Drain

As soon as, you notice the signs of blocked drains, you should try to clear them at your home.

·       If you find hair or any other foreign substance trapped in the drain, you can try using a wire or a plunger to remove the foreign substance. If you find corrosion in the fixture of the tap, you can put a bucket to hold water and disassemble the parts to get a new one.

·       There are some drain cleaners available in the market and these are known to work effectively. However, you should get the one suited for the specific type of blockage to get the best results.

In fact, if you have some knowledge along with some plumbing tools, you might try your hands on clearing the blocked drains. Otherwise, the best idea is to call a professional plumber. The professionals are highly skilled and experienced, and they can identify the cause to help you fix the problem. Therefore, you can be certain of getting a clean drain without any kind of foul smell from the drains.

Emergency Cleaning Service

However, in some situations, you might notice that the blocked drains have created huge mess. In such a situation, you will require emergency cleaning services. There is no point trying to self-clean the drain in such a situation because you might make more mess out of it. On the contrary, the best thing that you can do is to call a professional plumber to resolve the issue at the earliest. The plumber with their years of experience will not only clean the drains, but also give you some of the most effective tips by means of which you can maintain the condition of your drain in the course of time. Thus, you will benefit from it.

-Guest Contributor, Evan Javier