From Popcorn Ceiling Removal to Outdoor Decor

Ripping down your pre-1980’s ceiling, or opting for professional popcorn ceiling removal, is just the tip of the design iceberg for most homeowners today. From elaborate patio design to the more everyday alteration of a curtain or ceiling, homeowners continue to pursue satisfying decor. As downturns in the economy impact national and household budgets, homeowners can benefit by including new priorities as part of their design process. While making expensive financial decisions, it may be wise to look more toward the future, keenly evaluating the sustainability of the project from start to finish.

Material Choices & Longevity:

Home remodels can have two facets: aesthetic and functional updates. In the example above, acoustic or popcorn ceiling removal, incorporates both worlds of design and function; while one homeowner might choose this process to update a style, another may be pursuing a healthier home to offset damage done to an asbestos containing ceiling. With each decision, comes the need to use a forward thinking mindset: to choose practitioners and replacement materials which have the best chance of satisfying the inhabitants for the long haul.

Outside of the home, using more durable materials for outdoor design brings the same benefit. Creating unique and personalized outdoor decor has long been the goal of homeowners and home designers. Motivations such as these have propelled each group to use styling methods which complement specific areas with a unique configuration of more durable materials. Adding a unique touch has value as well. Pavers, custom-styled pieces of exterior flooring, are one in a list of materials with these distinctive design uses.

Personality & Longevity:

Homeowners can also seek out options which fit them to the tee, thereby improving the likelihood of long-term satisfaction. Take the above example. Otherwise known as paving stones, these concrete substitutes can take on the appearance of tile, natural stones, natural mineral-based materials and more. The endless number of potential patterns and styles formed by any unique combination of paver shapes affords designers many choices. In addition, homeowners can receive new inspiration; for the common outdoor areas, there is plenty of room for combining innovative personal designs and eye-pleasing comfort.

In Garden Paths: Inspiring Designs and Practical Projects by Gordon Hayward, homeowners are encouraged to identify slight style differences which please them. Similarly, in educational materials regarding the construction of paving stones, designers are pointed toward diversity. These themes free homeowners to find a personalized style which can satisfy them for the long haul.

Regarding diversity, variations in the proportion of natural minerals, texture, structure and finish type can alter the color of a paving stone. And the same is true for many essential materials used in remodels today. Altogether, these highly adaptable aspects of the material help to create a style and pattern which is memorable for owners, visitors and designers of the space.

Outdoor Decorating Ideas

The end of winter is near; and as we look forward to the coming of spring and summer, many of us would like to spruce up our homes, indoor or outdoor. Adding accents and decorations to our backyard and patio is an enjoyable task as we prepare for the forthcoming fun in the sun. There are several ways to decorate your backyard, your lawn or your garden. Aside from the flowering plants and shrubs, you can add lawn figures, bird baths, outdoor furniture like a bench or swing, or water features like water fountains.

Great Decorating with water features is dependent on the type, style and size you want. You have a choice of water falls, water walls, ponds or water fountains. In this article, we focus on the water fountain.

Adding a water fountain to your home or garden brings a sense of tranquility and comfort that improves ones mood and increases energy. If used indoor, not only will it enhance the beauty of the room, but it also adds moisture in the air which soothes dry skin during the cold, winter months. Incorporating a water fountain into your garden provides a unique accent which can also be used as a focal point on your outdoor decorating. Fountains also keep water in constant motion, preventing your garden from becoming a breeding ground for mosquitoes. They come in various styles, shapes, and sizes which allows you to find the perfect match for your garden, patio or your living room. They can be designed to be mounted on a wall or sit on a tabletop, freestanding floor fountains, or installed directly above or in the ground. For added versatility, get an indoor fountain that can also be used outdoors. If you are a handyman, you can make your own outdoor fountain; if not, there are always a lot of choices to choose from.

Fountains are constructed from different forms of synthetic and natural materials. Stone, rocks and slate are heavy, tough, difficult to move, highly durable and can withstand the constant flow of water and exposure to different weather elements and mother nature. Metals like copper or brass age and develop new patina over time. Thinner metals like tin or aluminum can be less pricey but gets dented and damaged easily. Ceramics can be durable, lasts long and come in a variety of colors and price range. The most economical option is the synthetics, like resin or acrylic. These are lightweight and easy to move around, durable, and also lasts long. Natural materials like stone or metal can be simulated using synthetics and still this does not age. Another option is stainless steel which is very resistant to corrosion, clean-up is easy, and could last for a long time. Asian-themed gardens often used bamboo materials. This can be used indoor or outdoor. Choosing wood fountain made of pine, oak, cedar maple, etc. is another alternative. A barrel or an old-fashioned wagon wheel fountain are examples of this kind. Using this material would require good waterproofing and a liner. Fiberglass or glass types are also available if you so desire. With all these types available in the market today, choose the one that will fit your needs; and when it is installed, sit back, relax and enjoy the calming effect of the soothing sounds of running water from an outdoor water fountain.

Professional Landscaping Advice

Landscaping is a great way to do some home improvement that will have a big impact. Your landscaping really improves your home’s curb appeal and it’s one of the first things people notice about your home. One thing to ensure is that you also take care regarding the look of your lawn as a whole. Amazing landscaping won’t really help you if your lawn is patchy, brown, or unkempt. A beautiful lawn with tasteful landscaping can really catch the eye of a potential buyer. It could mean the difference between making a sale and continuing to set on the market.

Even if you’re planning to contract out the entire job to a professional, you can still save yourself some money. Spend a few hours clearing out the dead plants, weeds, and any debris or trash from all of your beds and lawn will save you paying a professional hundreds to do the same work. Clearing out beds is not something you need experience to do, so why not save your cash for the work you really can’t do?

A professional landscaper may provide lawn design or you may need to hire a landscape designer to draw up some plans for you. That doesn’t mean you can’t contribute to the conversation. Bring your magazine ads and photos to share with the designer so that they have a clear idea of what you envision in your yard. The designer can calculate plans with different options so you can see if your vision and your budget match.

Be sure to get references and referrals to find your designer. Talk with each of them and look over their ideas. Get estimates from each one, but don’t let that be the deciding factor. Carefully consider what each one has to offer and weigh in their reputation and reliability.

Home Improvement

Outdoor path lighting is as important to your outdoors as trimming the lawn, looking after the trees, and other landscaping projects that you might undertake from time to time. Good fixtures for outdoor path lighting can really make a difference to the look of your home after sundown. There are many different styles of outdoor path lighting that you can choose from. Not only are these designs pleasing to look at but they also provide some additional security by helping you to clearly see the surroundings when the sun is no longer in the sky.

Outdoor path lighting is a good way to enhance the way your home looks from the outside or from a distance. A careful placement of outdoor path lighting fixtures can be used to highlight specific architectural features or natural growth around the house to create exactly the kind of look you want for your house. The fixtures you use in the outdoor path lighting for your house are important because they will determine the rest of the design for outdoor lighting. Not only must you choose the right fixture for outdoor path lighting but you must also choose the right place to put that fixture if it is to serve as a decoration as well as a security device. Remember that every fixture you use in your outdoor path lighting is going to affect the overall design that you intend to follow.

Outdoor lighting equipment proves extremely successful as well as quite beautiful for people who wish to enhance the look that can be offered by an illuminated fountain. As with all fixtures that are in close proximity to water or water sources, this one must also be water-resistant and have a long endurance limit.

This holds true of all outdoor path lighting equipment. Since these are exposed to the elements they need to be tougher than indoor fixtures that have to function in controlled environments. Besides the weather and heat and cold, outdoor path lighting is often subjected to unsafe materials and physical damage. Copper and brass are the two most commonly use water-resistant materials for outdoor path lighting fixtures.

While the ability to resist damage and weather corrosion is important, of equal importance is the decorative value of the outdoor path lighting fixtures because in the end people are not going to compliment you on your choice of material for the light fixture but on the overall look the fixture accomplishes for your home. Depending on the size of the surrounding area and the desired amount of illumination you might have to buy several types of outdoor path lighting fixtures.

Chrome Wire Shelving to Improve Home Decor

In any home design process, the way that your space functions is the main concern. However, the look of the area is also important, to both the homeowners and to their guests who visit. This makes the process of selecting the best options more difficult. You may have had a designer or friend suggest chrome wire shelving as a possibility for storage options in your home, but may be unsure of how it can work in your home’s decor. The good news is that this affordable and durable option is more flexible than most people imagine.

If you are already familiar with wire shelving brands such as Nexel or Metrorack, you may have first seen them used in a garage or outdoor space. Of course, they do work great for garages and workshops. In these applications, you often are storing heavy duty items that need a storage system that can hold up to a bit of abuse. Industrial solutions makes sense in an outdoor space. But, does chrome wire shelving have a place inside the home as well?

Look in any modern home and you likely see a lot of high tech home equipment, such as appliances and big screen televisions. With a bit of attention to details, there is no reason that chrome wire shelving can’t fit into this overall look. Metal adjustable shelving can be used in place of furniture; for example, a single low shelf makes a classy end table. It is also perfect for organizing a walk-in closet or pantry. Even in applications where the shelving is out in the open, you can add features to make it fit into the decor. In a kitchen, butcher block inserts make a lovely bar or food preparation station. For a dining area, or living room, you might consider adding glass inserts to improve the appearance of the shelving.

In the home, chrome wire shelving has many more uses than most people imagine. Instead of leaving this durable option in the garage, you should definitely take a look at the many ways that wire shelving can improve your home. From the kitchen, recreation room, bathroom, or bedroom, metal adjustable shelving should always be one of the storage options that you consider for a beautiful and functional home.

Other Outdoor Decor Can Really Improve Your Garden

Garden decor is a wonderful way to add interest to your property using things such as fountains, sculptures, yard furniture, bird feeders and baths, ponds, large garden finials, teak benches, vases, plants, old stone urns. Even patio furniture and patio umbrellas can help make your garden area look interesting, distinct and beautiful. Finding and adding unique, unusual or even strange garden accessories can add to the gardens appeal if you stage them properly but still allow the beauty of the flowers and plants to show. Whether you live in the city with a postage-sized piece of property or have a huge garden area, there are ways to create different effects such as comfort, elegance, calmness, excitement, formality or even an ‘outdoor room’ effect, depending upon your design.

Outdoor garden decor that has a permanent location creates interest in not only the summer but also the winter months. Although outdoor garden decor such as a fountain or water garden creates a central point of interest in large or small informal or formal garden settings, never use decor too large for the area or too many ornaments so it becomes overwhelming and the garden becomes cluttered looking.

The charm of a garden ornament placed in the correct area will help you produce the ambiance or atmosphere you are looking for in a garden. For people wanting a more formal setting, the correct placement of a large fountain, a pair of detailed, elaborate large Grecian urns or an elegant sculpture is a great way to add to the formal design or feel of the garden. In an informal setting or for a natural looking garden, whimsical ornaments placed throughout your garden, the glimpse of a small stone sculpture amongst the hostas or even a squirrel ornament peeking from behind a tree is all that is necessary. Create an unexpected glimpse or surprise effect by hiding smaller garden ornaments or unique pieces throughout the flowerbeds and gardens. For Japanese type gardens, building a water or koi pond with a bridge over it or a simple large stone lantern or statue will produce a stunning sight. A wonderful way to soften the look of architectural and sculptural pieces is by encouraging moss to grow on them or having vines trail over them. Some other tips to improve the look and feel or your garden include:

  • If you are just starting to landscape your property, focus on a specific area, add a main point of interest such as a gazebo, large statue, patio table and patio umbrella, fountain or waterfall and then build the gardens and decor around this.
  • Add style, architectural form and interest to the decor of your garden by adding some wicker patio furniture.
  • Enhance the decor of your garden by using some of the many interesting, unique outdoor lightening options available on the market today.

Remember that garden decor is a completely personal choice so always use ornaments and decorations that appeal to your sense of taste.

Outdoor Decor Ideas For Your Outdoor Living

Many of us enjoy the outdoors. That is why many homes now are designed with some sort of outdoor areas like decks, patios and porches. Decorating these areas can make them more inviting and welcoming. The following are some simple ideas to help you get started on decorating your patio or porch. Below are some outdoor living decor ideas that you might want to apply for your outdoor area immediately.

If your outdoor area is a bit sunny and planting trees around it for shade may take some time, you can try putting up a shade instead. All you need is a canopy. Put it up and you get instant shade that immediately makes your area a great place to hang out.

An outdoor area will look great in the evenings if you have candles at hand. Get several votive candles in glass jam jars or purchase some inexpensive tea light holders from your home improvement stores. These candles when hung and placed around the patio will create a romantic atmosphere for you and your loved ones. It will be a great place to just relax and enjoy each other’s company.

If you have a gazebo or patio with a trellis, use it as part of your outdoor decorations. You can easily slip in strands of holiday lighting in the trellis and you will get an intimate place to sit in the evenings. The trellis also acts as a great backdrop to your outdoor holiday decorating. Yes, the outdoor area should not be forgotten when you are decorating your home for Halloween, Christmas or Thanksgiving. This will make these areas even more exciting.

With a garden around your deck or outdoor living room, you can get inspirations for decorating right from Mother Nature herself. Take a look around you and see the colors of the flora. Use these colors in your outdoor decor. Find similar hued outdoor rugs. Choose cushions in the same complementary colors. Pick planters in similar greens or browns. This will make your outdoor living room lovely and perfect.

Another way to add pizazz is to use hanging baskets. Hanging baskets of flowers or green foliage will be a great accent that can be used on your porch or your deck. You can even hang these in your gazebo. They will add a touch of the garden to your area.

You can even find great outdoor furniture to complement your outdoor areas. Sets of umbrella and tables with matching chairs look great on a deck. You can get the shade and enjoy cool lemonade while reading outside.

The outdoor area is an extension of your home. Outdoor home decorations can be fun if you know what to do and the satisfaction you’ll get from it is indescribable. By decorating your outdoor area, it will make it more inviting and homely.