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15

Drapes for your Bathroom

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Bathrooms can be a bit more of challenge than other parts of your home to redecorate. They are well-known to require a larger budget (thanks to the plumbing involved) and to place more strain on materials due to the ongoing humidity. You also need to consider your window treatment carefully – after all you want something that will contend with the water and let in light, as well as providing you with enough privacy. That doesn’t mean that all style needs to go out the window – thankfully drapes come in such a huge range of colors, patterns, and materials, you’ll easily be able to find several options to serve your bathroom.

Privacy

Probably more than any other room, your bathroom window treatment must protect your privacy. Drapes are a great option, as long as they’re done in the right way. People often enjoy a lot of natural light in the bathroom, so half drapes or valances are a popular choice to balance both of these requirements. It also means you can have the drapes ‘drawn’ and don’t have to mess around with opening and closing them every time someone needs to use the bathroom.

Material

With the amount of moisture in the air (especially in a full bathroom) you shouldn’t use any material which is likely to be affected. Consider vinyl drapes (which aren’t susceptible to mold and are very easy to clean), cottons, or blends, depending on your budget and preference.

Patterns and Colors

Many homeowners often feel more comfortable playing with bolder patterns and colors in the bathroom as opposed to the bedroom or living room. Patterns work fabulously on drapes in the bathroom – especially if you don’t opt for full sized. They can be a striking focal point to the room and frame the area beautifully.

14

Drapes for your Living Room

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Drapes are the perfect choice for your living room. They not only contribute on an aesthetic level, they make a room immediately cozier. Then there are the more practical aspects; drapes do a great job of blocking out sound, light, cold, and give you and your family the privacy you need.

Functionality

Functionality should always be your main concern – after all you might have the most beautiful, ornate drapes around but if they don’t offer any warmth or let the light in so much you can’t see the television, you’re in trouble. A lot of drapes are designed with various applications in mind, as such you can get blackout material (popular in the bedroom) or heavily lined. Think about where your living room faces, and about how much natural light you want. This can help to inform your decision when faced with so many options.

Color/Patterns

Next you should consider what color and/or print you want. The great thing about drapes is they’re so popular, and so they are countless different shades, hues, and patterns to choose from. Take some samples of materials home and see how they suit the decor. Lighter drapes tend to let more light in, but darker ones can be too demanding of the space visually. When it comes to patterns if you’re not ready for a fully patterned drape, remember you can always layer your drapes with bolder curtains. Neutrals are always a good choice as they can suit many different decors and can be reused in different rooms when you decide to redecorate again.

Material

Lining your drapes will provide you with the functionality you need, but what material should your drapes be? In the living room you might want to keep things light and simple and opt for cotton, or if you’re feeling more luxurious you could also think about silks and velvets.

13

Drapes for the Kitchen

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Are you unsure of what window treatment to settle on for your kitchen?? Drapes are a great choice in any room thanks to the huge range of different materials, styles, prints, and prices – and the kitchen is no exception.

When it comes to the kitchen, you have different requirements than in other areas of the home. Generally there is less of a need for privacy, and more of a need for natural light to enter. Then there are the external factors – the purpose of a kitchen is of course to cook in. This means your material will have to contend with the occasional splatter and more moisture and heat in the air.

Style

The great thing about window treatments is their ability to finish off the look of a room. In the kitchen, the last thing you’re probably thinking about when choosing your cabinets and layout is what drapes will match it. Thankfully they come in such a wide variety of styles, it won’t be hard to find something that complements your decor.

A common trend in the kitchen is to opt for shorter drapes than you would in for example, the bedroom or living room. In fact a popular choice to have a valance – which covers just the top of the window – or half length (so as to still keep an element of privacy). This helps let in a lot of natural light to the kitchen, with the drapes being mostly decorative in nature.

Material

In other rooms you can afford to err on the luxurious side with your drapery – but silk or velvet isn’t practical for the kitchen. Instead opt for less fragile, easier to clean materials like cotton or vinyl. You may need to wash these drapes more often than others, so be sure to find out how easy it is to this when reviewing your options.

12

Drapes for your Bedroom

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Window treatment is not only a functional but also an aesthetically impactful part of any room’s decor. When it comes to the bedroom, their importance is further heightened, as contribute majorly to your sleep environment.

When it comes to creating the perfect conditions in which to slumber, it really does depend on personal preference and the exterior environment. Some people prefer natural light to assist them in waking up, whereas others need to block out intrusive street lamps in order to get to sleep in the first place. Thankfully there’s a whole range of window treatments to suit any and all sleep types – in fact there’s a huge variety even in terms of just drapes.

Drapes for the Window

Drapes are a traditional choice when it comes to window treatment – but that doesn’t mean they haven’t continued to improve. Drapes now come in a huge range of different styles, materials, colors, and prices – so make sure you consider all your options, as there are plenty. They tend to be heavier than curtains and are often lined, which makes them the perfect choice for the bedroom. By having heavier material you not only block out light, but also sound and cold. It’s worth spending more on high quality drapes if you need them to do the aforementioned.

Header

Drapes come with different headers (the top of the material) which include gathers, pinch pleats,, and more. You might also consider topping your curtains with swags for a romantic touch.

Material

As the bedroom is less visited than other areas of the home and by less people (as well as not having to deal with external factors such as humidity) you can afford to be choosy with your material. Some homeowners like to opt for luxurious materials such as silks and velvets.

Drapes for the Bed

Drapes are not just for the window – you can use your bed frame to create a beautiful focal point in your room by creating a canopy with drapes. The material and style you choose is again dependent on your preference: you could opt for heavy materials in opulent hues for a traditional four poster bed, for a less intense look  have lighter materials (like silk) hung just at the head.

The benefit of having drapes around your bed is not only how they contribute visually, they can also keep your sleeping area warmer.

11

Upgrading Old Cabinets

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If you’re in need of an update to your cabinets but don’t quite have the budget to buy new,  there are many different ways in which you can improve them. Check out some of the following suggestions:

Paint

If you have the time consider painting your cabinets – it’s a great DIY project and an inexpensive way to give a facelift to your kitchen or bathroom. If you decide painting is for you, it’s imperative you find out what your original cabinets are made of in order to do the job correctly. For solid wood you can gently sand off the original paint, but that isn’t the case for wood veneer. There are many different products on the market, so do you research or you could end up spending more in the long run!

Tip – Why not try mixing different colors to create your own unique styles. You could have a neutral shade on the lower cabinets and a brighter on top.

Lighting

Another way in which you can give new life to your cabinets is smart lighting choices. Uplighting can immediately alter the mood and aesthetic of a space, and can be done quite inexpensively.

New Handles

Handles are another even cheaper way to upgrade. New handles can be purchased with relative ease and fitted in no time at all, creating a unique look to your home.

No More Doors

Instead of adding something, why not take away instead? Removing some of the cabinet doors and repainting the interiors can really open up the space.

Reface

Refacing your current cabinets is a great idea for those on a budget who want a entirely new look. Add a few glass inserts for variety, and you’ll have what looks like a whole new kitchen for a fraction of the price.

Smart Additions

You can also update the interior of some of your cabinets to make your life easier. You might want cabinets that roll out around corners for example.

10

Bathroom Cabinet Recommendations

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Your bathroom can be a very personal, expressive place. Some homeowners want their bathroom to be modern and clutter free with everything hidden away, whilst others want a way to display their belongings attractively for ease of access. Whatever your preference, cabinets are a huge part of the overall aesthetic and functionality.

Here’s some of our top tips to help you choose the right cabinet:

Layout

Your layout will greatly dictate the number and style of cabinets you need. If you have a lot of things to store, it’s important to opt for a variety of cabinet sizes and types. For example you may want a longer cabinet to store towels, a drawer for smaller objects etc. Quite often bathrooms have an open drawer for ease of access to commonly used items.

 

You then need to consider how large you want your vanity mirror and sink, as this will impact on the cabinets you can fit around them. Ensure your drawers are sturdy (not stapled) and are of a good thickness – bathroom items can get heavy and you want drawers that are built to last.

Material

Your bathroom goes through a lot and therefore need materials that aren’t subject to chipping, peeling, etc. Make sure the materials you choose for your cabinets are strong enough to withstands heat, moisture, and water. Most bathroom cabinets will be designed to combat these factors – but there are different tiers of quality in terms of both materials and finishes. It depends on how long you want your cabinets to last. If you don’t feel like redecorating anytime soon pay more and save in the long run. Check the waterproofing ability and ensure you use a high quality sealant to protect your precious cabinets. Solid wood is always a good option (research into the best type for your needs) though plywood does not expand so readily when faced with water, so is well worth considering.

Accessories

Having your cabinets designed with your needs in mind can make a big difference. so think logically. Will it make your life that bit easier to have a hair dryer drawer with a built in outlet? Well then why not! After all, you’re the one who’s going to be using it everyday.

9

Kitchen Cabinet Recommendations

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If you’re in the midst of redecorating your kitchen aren’t certain which cabinets to choose, then take a look at some of the following top tips:

Longevity

One of the first things to consider is how long you intend on staying in your current home, and how long until you plan on redecorating. If you’re in it for the long haul it makes sense to opt for a higher quality option (such as solid wood), whereas if you enjoy to redecorate often and you’re opting for a contemporary, on-trend design you may prefer veneer or MDF. If you are thinking of moving soon resale value is an important factor – a prospective buyer might well be swayed by a new, impressive kitchen complete with high quality cabinets.

Budget

Your cabinet choice is greatly controlled by how much money you have to spend. If you’re on a tighter budget then solid wood might not be attainable – thankfully there are many different, more affordable materials which can mimic oaks, cherry etc. You can also think about choosing less expensive woods, and mixing different materials to create a unique space.

Layout

Next you need to think about the layout of your kitchen – complete a quick sketch to give yourself a visual idea. Do you want an island? A long cabinet? What about your appliances, do you want them to be built into your cabinet doors? And have you considered glass cabinets to display or help illuminate the areas?

Will it fit in?

If your kitchen is a separate room then this may not be a concern for you, but if you have an open plan space then you want your cabinet style to complement the rest of the decor. Shaker cabinets are a great all rounder, but experiment and see what works for your home.

8

Choosing the Right Materials for your Cabinets

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Choosing the right material for your cabinet is just as important as the style you select. You need to consider many factors, including your budget, taste, and if it will complement your decor.

Solid Wood

The most well-known and traditional choice for a kitchen cabinet is solid wood. They have a very long lifespan, are durable, and can even be a selling point for your home. They do come with a higher price tag to match, but again this price varies based on the type of wood you choose. These include:

  • Red Oak (strong, more affordable, often used for traditional/customisable cabinets)
  • Maple (popular and used in many contemporary styles)
  • Hickory (a lighter, creamy, natural wood great for simple, rustic styles)
  • Cherry (very strong, often stained to create a uniform color)
  • Birch (more affordable and can give the appearance of a more expensive wood)

Wood Veneer

If your budget doesn’t quite stretch to solid wood, you can instead opt for wood veneer. This ingenious style of cabinet is actually made from a cheaper material (such as plywood) but has an outer layer of hardwood, giving a deceptive illusion for a fraction of the price. Wood veneer comes in pretty much any design that a hardwood does, and is just as pleasing to the eye (though it won’t last as long).

Stainless Steel

Many professional kitchens opt for stainless steel cabinets due to hygiene and longevity, but more and more homeowners are considering this contemporary material for their homes. It’s certainly more suited to modern, industrial decor, and if you’re not quite ready for the full steel cabinet you can add touches to your countertops instead to achieve a similar tone.

Glass

Having glass details in your cabinets can really open up your kitchen and create the illusion of light – as well as providing a place to display items. You may also want to install lighting to help illuminate different areas of your kitchen. More modern kitchens lean to frosted glass, whereas a more traditional style complements ornate leading.

7

Different Cabinet Styles

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Your cabinet choice is one of the most significant decisions you make when redecorating your kitchen. Cabinets are a major focal point, drawing the eye and setting the tone of the space, and there are so many different styles to choose from. Here are a selection of the most popular:

Flat

Streamline, simple, chic and with more than just an edge of modernity, flat cabinets are perfect if you want to create a contemporary kitchen. It’s hard line and minimalist, with no over the top decoration – if this sounds like your approach to decor then flat is the way to go. Flat cabinets tend to be offered in laminates, wood, and glass.

Shaker

A firm favorite no matter what your taste, shaker cabinets are built with both functionality and style in mind. The great thing about Shaker cabinets is they complement pretty much any and every type of decor – from traditional to modern. This also gives them a timeless nature, keeping them ‘in fashion’ no matter what fads come and go. Because of their ubiquitous nature Shaker cabinets come in every material you can think of, making the prices range from costly to more affordable.

Distressed

The distressed style has been growing in popularity of late, thanks to the overall appreciation of vintage fashion. You can choose any cabinet type, though more traditional styles work better with the distressed aesthetic. In terms of how to distress your cabinets, you can hire professionals or look online for DIY instructions and videos.

Louvered

Louvered cabinets are on the pricier end of the scale thanks to the workmanship that goes into creating their unique appearance. Each door is constructed using multiple slats making it easier to circulate air – this feature makes them a good choice for areas close to dishwashers and washing machines.

Inset

A more traditional choice, inset cabinets create a beautiful overall look to any kitchen. They’re lovingly crafted and have a price tag to match – but they have lasting power thanks to their design. They also come in a huge array of different materials.

6

3 Flooring Options for your Hallway

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Your hallway plays an incredibly important role in your home – it’s where everyone enters from and thus provides the first impression for all visitors. Additionally, it sees a high level of foot traffic on a daily basis – and not always from the cleanest shoes! So what flooring is best for your hallway? Let’s take a look:

Vinyl

Vinyl may have once fallen out of fashion, but its back now and making huge waves in the interior design world. It’s so popular because it has managed to keep on the lower end of the price spectrum without compromising on style or quality. It is now offered in a huge array of different styles – which can also appear to the naked eye identical to materials three times their price. Not only that, it copes extremely well in areas of high footfall. Vinyl tiles are growing increasingly popular of late,but you can still get the sheet variety if you prefer.

Hardwood

Traditionally hardwood is seen as a popular choice for the hallway – and with good reason. It’s strong, long lasting, and easy to clean. There is of course the risk of scratches, so it’s advisable to have a runner or ask guests to remove their footwear before entering. Hardwood will last for decades, just ensure to maintain it regularly and opt for a strong finish to content with all those footsteps.

Tiles

Tiles can create some beautiful patterns to welcome your guests into your home – and you can easily sweep up any debris from dirty shoes no problem. You can opt for stone, ceramic, porcelain – even tiles that look like wood! Strong and with an incredibly long lifespan, tiles might well be the way to go if you don’t feel like redecorating again anytime soon.

Tip – Always Have an Entrance Mat

Having an entrance mat means you won’t have to sweep anywhere near as much, and it will help to prolong the life of your hallway – whichever flooring you opt for.