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I Got My Shutters from a Local Merchant

I like to stay loyal to local businesses when I can. I don’t mind going to a big box store if it is the only place I can get something or if the local store is just ridiculous with their pricing, but more often than not I will stay local with my shopping. When I decided to get window plantation shutters, I did not go to the national home store that is in every major city. Instead, I looked locally, which is how I found Orange County Shutters. This business has been building shutters for homes and businesses for over two decades, so I knew that they had to be good.

I still went to their website to get more information on them, and I was able to look at a lot of different details there. What I liked best was that there are a lot of pictures there, which really helped me in determining the style I wanted to go with. Continue reading

Finding the Best Deals on the Home Furnishings You Want

Most furniture stores offer a variety of great items for any room in your home. It can be fun to shop around and compare both options and prices. Take your time to get exactly what you want for a price that is going to work with your allotted budget. You can buy individual items or you can buy complete sets.

Don’t wait until you absolutely have to replace something though. If you do, you will feel stressed and rushed to make a purchase. This is going to result in you paying more because you don’t have time to look around. Start planning early to get the best choices and to really love what you will have in your home.

Sales

If you play your cards right, you will never pay full price for your furnishings. Instead, you can shop around and look for furniture stores offering very good sales. Make sure they really are giving you a deal though. Sadly, some stores will mark up prices and then put them on sale. This lower price is still more than you would pay for the same items somewhere else.

Clearance

Items are often on clearance at furniture stores to make room for the new merchandise. There is nothing wrong with those items, they are just older. They still have plenty of value and you may find something that gets your attention. This is a very simple way to save money on wonderful items for your home.

Save Money with a Set

Most furniture stores give you significant savings when you buy a set versus buying only one or two items. Think about this when you are shopping around. For example, if you want to get a couch, you may get a terrific deal to buy a couch with a matching loveseat. If you need a coffee table, you may find a wonderful price on a set with two end tables as well.

Free Shipping

Avoid paying to have your items delivered to you. Look for furniture stores that offer free shipping. The savings can add up quickly so don’t overlook this very important detail. Depending on what you buy from them, they may be willing to haul away your old items for free or a low price. It is a good idea to check into this as it will save you hauling them off.

Warranty

You need furnishings that look nice, they are fully functional, and they hold up well. Look for furniture stores offering quality items. You don’t want to pay for something that isn’t sturdy or from materials that simply aren’t going to hold up. Those companies offering a warranty on the items they sell are also encouraging. It means they believe in what they sell to you!

Financing

If you don’t have the money up front to buy home furnishings, you may be tempted to put it all on a credit card. Yet this can come with high interest with it and take time to pay it off. Many companies offer in house financing. The interest is often less than your credit cards. Some have special promotions too such as 0% interest as long as you pay off the balance.

Evaluating Flooring Options

It doesn’t have to be a headache to decide on the carpet and flooring you want for your home. Don’t get overwhelmed due to vast selection of types of items, colors, and styles. If you can embrace that variety, it will change your entire mindset about all of it. Spend some time looking at the various pros and cons so you can make a purchase you are very content with.

Avoid those cheaply made materials though because they aren’t going to last. You may be able to buy them for a lower price, but in the end you will pay more. You will have to replace them very soon. It is better to get a great value overall in terms of both quality and price so the items are going to hold up over time.

Traffic in your Home

Think about the types of traffic in your home when it comes to carpet and flooring decisions. If you live in a very busy household with pets, children, and plenty of visitors, you want products that can do well with heavy traffic. You don’t want light coloured carpets that can become stained or ruined quickly.

You also don’t want hardwood floors that could be scuffed or scratched due to kids and their toys, the shoes your frequent guests wear, and other scenarios. There are types of carpet and flooring available that work well in high traffic homes. It is a good idea to look at those if you know it will be harder to keep them clean due to the comings and goings in your home.

Appearance and Décor

Think about the look you wish to have in your home. The appearance and the overall décor of the home will influence what you buy. You want to be comfortable and relaxed all the time. You want your home to be a place where you are proud to look around and see your investment. At the same time, what you select should be durable and also meet your ongoing needs.

Finding the balance between what carpet and flooring offer in terms of beauty with what they can offer for quality and for standing up to day to day use is important. You don’t want to have to tiptoe around your home in order to preserve them.

Cleaning and Maintaining

How will you take care of the carpet and flooring you purchase? This is important because you want to make sure you do it the right way. The wrong methods can result in damaging or ruining those surfaces. Then you will have to replace them again in the near future. The amount of effort that will go into cleaning and maintaining certain products can also influence what you buy.

Cost

Evaluate your budget for carpet and flooring to get an idea of what you can purchase. There are many great choices out there that don’t have to be expensive. For example, if you can’t afford hardwood flooring right now, consider laminate. It looks amazing but it is offered at a fraction of the cost.

You can also save money on carpeting by looking for sales and closeout offers. Being able to buy the carpet or other flooring you really want for the lowest possible price is important. It allows you to stretch the money you have available wisely. Look for products that offer a warranty on them too.

Don’t overlook the cost for installation of your materials too. It is best to have them installed by someone with the right tools, equipment, and expertise than to do the work on your own. If you need to cut down the costs though you can consider installing on your own. Make sure you follow the instructions carefully so you get the best possible results.

The Modern Evolution of the Sofa

In choosing the perfect sofa, take inspiration from these master craftsmen whose influence can still be found in living rooms around the globe.

Thomas Chippendale

Thomas Chippendale was a mid-18th-century cabinet-maker and interior designer whose innovations spanned several styles including neoclassical, Gothic, and rococo. He is known for his book of elaborate furniture designs that include complicated arches and ribbons. Chairs and sofas inspired by the Chippendale patterns have exposed bases and legs that curve down to the floor and may be carved. The pieces are typically constructed with dark-stained mahogany or other highly esteemed types of wood. They are upholstered with fine fabrics.

Robert Adams

Robert Adams was a Scottish architect who, along with his brother James, developed neoclassical interior designs in the mid-to-late 18th century. Their focus was elaborate architecture and furniture pieces that were designed together and echoed the same structural and ornamental themes. Adams’ furniture is characterized by light pieces with simplified classical designs like carved columns and medallion embellishments.

John Henry Belter

John Henry Belter was originally a cabinet-maker from Germany who brought his knowledge of wood carving to other furnishings. His unique method of laminating thin layers of wood together and ornately carving them defined a generation of woodworkers in the mid-1800s. His trademark Victorian sofas have curvy, S-shaped backs whose exposed wood features elaborate designs of flowers, curlicues, fruit, and birds.

Gustav Stickley

Gustav Stickley opened his first furniture company in 1883. Within two decades, he became a leader in the American Craftsman movement, which itself took inspiration from the British Arts and Crafts Furniture trend. His simple designs, with straight lines and straight-forward joints, placed an equal emphasis on form and function. Stickley-inspired sofas have plenty of simple, exposed woodwork with clear stains and finishes that let the natural beauty of the wood show through.

George Hepplewhite

Hepplewhite is another mid-18th-century English cabinet-maker with an interior design book to his name. However, unlike the other craftsmen mentioned here, no known pieces of his work still exist today. In fact, there is very little historical evidence to suggest that he ever produced couches and chairs for sale. Still, the design hallmarks of his work, featuring elegant curling arms and backs with contrasting straight legs, are elements that regularly appear on household items today. One of his unique sofa designs features a curving, non-upholstered wooden back featuring inverted arches with narrow rungs between them and delicately-patterned upholstery on the seat.

Knoll Associates

Designs have continued to evolve in the twentieth century and beyond. Hans Knoll originally started the company in 1938, but upon his death, his wife Florence continued to design and manufacture modern furniture. Their sofas feature exposed cast-aluminum legs and monochromatic upholstery, occasionally with tufting. Modern sofa designs may incorporate unembellished wood, well-defined geometric shapes, and even hard polymer elements.

Thanks to the global marketplace, furniture customers have a wider-than-ever range of choices. From antique pieces crafted by the masters to mass-produced couches to customizable sectionals, and finally, customer-designed 3-D printed furniture, the sofa has come a long way in the intervening centuries.

Affordable Painting For Your Home

When the paint on your home is cracked and peeling, it is going to be quite an eyesore. It isn’t going to get any better either. The changes in the climate and other factors are going to just allow it to get worse and worse. You need to hire house painters to get it looking great again. You don’t want to be embarrassed by the way it looks!

You don’t want to worry about your budget either. Do your best to get as much money ready for the work to be done as you can. It may need you to cut out some extras from the household budget for a time. Yet it will all be worth it when you see how great your home looks once it is done.

Save Money

You don’t have to hire the most expensive house painters out there to get the work done. If you need to save money, compare prices and offers. Of course, you don’t want to compromise with overall value. Make sure they have experience, the right methods to get the job done, and they are going to use quality paint products.

Certain colors can cost you less when it comes to hiring house painters so ask about that. They may get particular colors including white at a lower price due to buying it in volume. That can mean they are able to pass along that savings to you. Compare quality of paint too because some of them offer close to the same value but one can be much higher than others.

You don’t have to go with the house painters chose of paint products either. You may decide you want them to use certain items you have purchased. Perhaps you can get discounted products such as recycled paint locally for a very low-cost. Just make sure it is going to go on like it should and hold up well over time. You don’t want to have to pay to get it done all over again soon.

Spray it On

The house painters can use equipment to spray on the paint instead of brushing it on. This will cost less money because it can be done in far less time. Make sure you ask about such a technique to make sure you can go this route and get that savings. Don’t assume that is what they are going to use.

Ask about paint that has primer in it too. This allows your provider to get the work done in less time. They aren’t going to need to put a coat or two of primer on the home before they can add the paint. With this added into the paint, the protection is still there but the work is done in half the time.

Better quality paint tends to stay on better and it only takes two coats. With cheaper quality of paint, they may need to add another coat or two. That increases the cost of the paint but also the coat of the labor due to the extra time involved. All of this needs to be carefully weighed in your decisions.

Compare Providers

It may surprise you to learn the difference in pricing offered among the house painters out there. Some of them charge far too much for the services the offer. Others offer a reasonable price to give you great value. Take the time to compare what is being offered to you and how much it is going to cost.

When you have that information to compare side by side, you can see where they are charging you more. Often, the pricing differences isn’t with the paint and other materials. Instead, it is the amount of money they are charging you for the labor to be done. When they can do that for a lower fee, it makes a difference in the bottom line you pay for such services.

How To Sell A Home Fast

When people put their home on the market, they want to sell it. No one wants to wait around for months as they hope that a buyer can pay what they feel their home is worth. No one wants to go through the process of showing their home to multiple buyers, only to discover that none of them want to buy the house.

It can be a nightmare, but when homeowners follow these tips, they can enjoy their home being sold faster than ever.

Curb appeal

Curb appeal is one of the most important things when it comes to selling a home. As soon as potential buyers pull up to the property, they will look at the exterior of the house, so it’s important that it looks nice.

First, walk out to the curb to look at the house from someone else’s point of view. Repair parts of the roof that can be seen, and make sure to pressure wash the roof for a nice, newer look. Clean out the gutters, and plant some flowers.

If the paint needs touched up, hire a few residential painters that can make the house look new again. Residential painters can paint the entire house, or residential painters can simply get rid of peeling paint and touch up the areas that need it the most.

Be honest

If a potential customer knows that the water heater is old, and it is old, don’t try to lie and tell them it’s newer. This will make customers wonder what else is wrong with the house that homeowners are not being honest about.

Instead, be as honest as possible. Tell them that the water heater is old, and that the cost of the new water heater has already been taken from the price being asked for the house.

Interior paint

When people want to buy a house, they are not just going to look at the outside of the house. A nice, fresh coat of paint can make a house look modern and taken care of. Work with the same residential painters that did the outside of the house to touch up the inside walls.

If hallways look dirty from children running their hands along the walls, residential painters can make them look new again. The same thing applies to other areas of the home. Some homeowners hire residential painters just to paint the high traffic areas before they put their home on the market.

Personalize the tour

When a homeowner shows a potential client their home, they usually high light the key areas, like a big kitchen or a nice, bay window. This is a good idea, but there are some customers that will not care about a big kitchen because they have a small family. There are others that will not care about a bay window.

Instead of simply talking up the key areas, ask potential buyers what they are looking for in a home. If they mention a big bedroom but the bedrooms are small, tell them the bedrooms are a bit small, and then add a good thing. For example, say that there is extra storage in the living room closet. The key to selling a house is to be honest, and try to help buyers figure out if the house is right for them. Once homeowners focus on the buyer’s and what they need when they show the house, they will notice that buyers are more interested in the house. This is because everyone wants to buy something from an honest person, whether it’s a car, house or a cat litter box.

Interior Painting: Tips From The Experts

Interior painting seems simple enough. Some people hire professionals, and others take on this simple DIY task themselves.

Unfortunately, those DIY enthusiasts often make quite a few mistakes along the way that can leave their living room in less than perfect condition. Often, these are simple mistakes that can easily be avoided.

According to professionals, following these tips can make a paint job look like a professional interior painter did the job no matter how little experience a person has.

Make sure that there is plenty of time

The most common mistake that people make when they refuse to hire an interior painter is rushing to get the job done. When a person tries to hurry up and get something done, they cut corners and they make more mistakes.

Instead, make sure that there is plenty of time to get the job done. This guarantees that a person can take their time when they paint the inside of the house, and they can be careful not to make mistakes.

Wash the walls

Most people know that they have to wash the exterior of the house before painting, but people usually forget about this step when it comes to the inside of the house. The walls on the inside of a house can accumulate dust and dirt, especially if there is trim along the room.

Wash the walls thoroughly and give them plenty of time to dry before applying the first coat of paint to make a job look like it was completed by a professional painter.

Don’t forget the primer

Sometimes, a fresh coat of paint will easily go over the paint that is already there. Sometimes, it may take a coat or two, which can lead to the paint being darker than the homeowners intended.

Avoid having a medium blue living room instead of a sky blue living room by picking up a primer. Most home improvement stores sell high quality paint that has a built-in primer to make sure that it goes on in one coat.

Don’t spread out the job over several days

When a person paints the inside of the house, they usually feel like they have all the time in the world, but this might not turn out so well.

If a person paints one part of a room one day, and spreads the rest of the room out over several days or weeks, it can lead to the paint being two different colors. This usually depends on the type of paint, and it might not be noticeable with lighter colors. On the other hand, it could look like the painter used two different colors on the interior.

When painting, it’s better to be safe than sorry and get it done in one day if possible.

Trim tools

Instead of trying to paint the trim with a standard paint brush, it’s better to pick up a nice tool to paint the part of the wall where it meets the trim. Products that have a guard that sits beside a small roller will make sure that the paint for the walls does not get on the trim.

While these tools are recommended by interior painters, there are several other tools available on the market that will do the same job. Those without previous experience painting will find these tools extremely helpful during the painting process.

Paint evenly

If it is possible, make sure to spread the paint evenly across the wall. If there is more paint on one part of the wall versus another, it will result in the wall being two different colors. The areas that have more paint on them will be a darker color than the rest of the wall.

It may sound like a lot of work, but all it takes is some time and thought to make sure that the inside of a home looks as though it were painted by professional interior painters.

5 Great Ideas That Will Transform Your Bathroom Completely

Kitchen and bathroom remodel are renowned for their ability to pay for themselves… and then some. These tend to be the first and second most requested home remodelings going today as well.

What do the numbers actually say? Minor bathroom remodels return an average of 102% to homeowners in terms of providing a higher resale value once you go to sell. In the meantime, you can count on a modern bathroom with the latest appliances, fresh tiles and natural stone or aggregate surfaces.

5 Great Ideas for Totally Transforming Your Bathroom!

Remodeling your bathroom is also great for starting your day off the right way since when you’re stumbling around-perhaps paying for the light switch before your morning cup of coffee you want a bathroom that looks and feels fantastic.

Years of style, comfort, utility savings and a sweet return on investment await the right bathroom remodeling decisions.

A few options that you might be dreaming about today might also actually be more doable tomorrow in terms of your budget as well. Have a look at a few of the bathroom remodeling options below:

Radiant Heated Flooring for Increased Comfort

Radiant flooring is considered the ideal home heating solution because it provides you and your family a big upgrade in comfort while remaining discrete and out of the way.

When you consider what a discrete, pleasant surprise radiant heated flooring would be for your guests, you start to see how nice it would be to work that add-on into your bathroom remodeling.

You might be thinking, isn’t radiant heated flooring super expensive? The answer is that this type of floor heating is within most budgets since you can expect to pay $6 per square foot for materials and around the same cost for labor… which is a heck of a deal.

Radiant flooring is an attractive option if you live in a colder climate or if you’re concerned about slipping after popping out of the shower; heated floors tend to dry quicker and result in less water collecting around the tub.

Opt for a Single-Sink Vanity

Why? Because of more counter space and utility savings compared to a double-sink vanity-are higher on most homeowners’ agendas than making sure that both spouses have a spot to simultaneously do their grooming.

With a single-sink vanity, you’ll find you have more room for toothbrushes, shavers and the like on top and more storage space underneath.

Consider Adding a Discrete Half Wall

Adding a half wall to your bathroom looks great and it allows your eye to focus more on the really important pieces like the skylights shining down on your vanity and mirror.

A half wall is done in the same tile pattern as the rest of your bathroom, in other words, can highlight what you want to be highlighted and give you more overall privacy: Invaluable for big families.

Add a Contemporary Glass Shower Enclosure

You might not think that you have room in your bathroom for a half wall, but you’d be surprised at how little room you actually need to make this idea work.

If you’re still self-conscious, though, adding wall mirrors and glass doors to your shower can both have an elongating effect.

Glass shower enclosures-sometimes called “frameless” shower doors have a sleek, minimalistic look that’s low on maintenance and might even lower your mold risk since there are fewer places for water to collect.

Go With Multiple Lighting Sources and Intensities

Wouldn’t it be nice to make one lighting decision and be done with it? It would but unless you’re being flooded with natural light, you might need extra help.

5 Tips to Buy the Right Quilt Cover Sets

Quilt covers protect the quilt in addition to beautify the bedroom. Although most quilts come in just white color, you can get creative and add a lot of colors. For instance, if you want to decorate your beds, you can get quilt cover sets with a variety of designs and colors. Here are a few tips that can help you buy quality quilt cover sets with ease.

Tip 1: Size

The size will be based on the size of the quilt and the bed. As a buyer, it’s important that you know the size of your bed prior to buying a cover set. For this, we recommend that you measure your bed size before leaving for the market.

Tip 2: Choose the Right Design

Quilt cover sets come in many designs. Based on the designs, price of the sets may vary significantly. Although the majority of covers feature a single piece of fabric design, you can find many covers with a lot of fabric pieces patched together. And the multi-fabric designs cost more than the single fabric designs.

So, if you can’t afford to spend a lot of bucks, go for a simple design. The cover set will be expensive if its design is complicated. However, the price will also depend on other factors, such as material, brand and so on.

Tip 3: Choose the Right Material

Apart from the size and design, material is another important factor that will affect the price. Common materials used in the making of quilts include silk, flannel, cotton blends, cotton and synthetic materials, just to name a few. You should know the qualities of each material before making the purchase.

Cotton is the most commonly used material. Then comes the cotton blends. As far as price goes, cotton covers are lightweight and inexpensive. However, for added warmth, you can opt for flannel or wool covers. For elegance, satin or silk covers are a great choice.

Tip 4: Other Features

Other features of quilt covers that make it easier for you to do the cleaning and maintenance work are also important. Make sure you go for covers that can be washed in a washing machine and can be dried in a dryer.

Another important feature you should look for is the quality of color. The colors of the cover shouldn’t fade due to repeated washings. Usually, these features are mentioned on the label, but if the label doesn’t say anything about it, you can ask the seller or the staff.

Tip 5: Consider the Purpose

Based on the corner of the world you live in, choose the right cover sets. For instance, if you live in the tropical areas, you should go for thin and breathable quilt cover sets. Usually, the covers shouldn’t let the dust particles get into the quilt. If you are allergic to dust, you can buy hypoallergenic quilt covers. As far as ease of cleaning goes, fabrics, such as cotton blends, pure cotton and polyester are good choices.

The Textured Walls Are Your Interior Design Boon

Textured walls can do wonders for the interior design of your home, work and commercial space. Textured walls are used almost for all themes of interior designing they complement as well as help you contrast the central theme.

They can be used as the highlight to the central theme as well. There are many materials one can use to texture the wall; it is up to you and the central theme projection you are looking for.

Country Style

This country style textured walls has a very warm look. Here cedar planks are used for the casing of the wall, as well as the ceiling. The running theme is country through and through, even to the light fittings. The windows and large French window allows for unhindered visual and natural sunlight to flow in. The solid wood furniture matches the wooden walls to make it barn like and with the country goodness of solid comfort. There is a hit of hardiness in the decor, solid wooden furniture as well as large Lawson sectioned sofa, which speak of total comfort. Country, we think simple comfort, wooded, and strength. These elements are incorporated in the choice of the wall texture as well as the furniture, with the central theme running through entirely. The flooring sections the floor allowing visual partitioning of the space, which is a clever thing to do, because country barns do not usually sport carpets. Carpets take away the bucolic impressions. The curtain rods and pelmets are in keeping with the central theme with very few highlights, and more contrast from the flooring as well as the sofas. The picture frames too are in keeping with the theme. The break from the woodiness comes from the soft flow of the curtains as well as the lacy sheers. There is minimal layering of cushions keeping the textured wall as the highlight.

Eclectic Concept

This is a 3-dimension wall panel. It is eclectic to suit the individual on the bizarre beauty of its design. While such designs may appear a little over the top, a lot of people opt to put their signature on the choice. Wall with abstract or running 3-dimension wall panels do away with the requirement for wall hangings and other embellishments. The walls themselves are the object ‘art. The sectioned white sofa set off the 3-dimension wall panel beautifully. The contrasting darker hue of the wall panel also sectioned carries the squares as opposed to the 3- dimension wall panel. Here there is contrast in the lines. The cabinets too follow the contrast and are sectioned precisely with neat square patterning. The colours are rich and luxurious the playing them with lines do not take away the warmth from the central tone.

Trellised Walls

Trellised walls help achieve earthy ornamentation. It gives a beautiful latticed look, delicate and yet symmetry is achieved. The terracotta floor tiles enhance the naturalism in the tones of the trellised walls. Positioning of lights and brackets for ornamentation is easily achieved with this kind of walls. The furniture can be moved as it is a running pattern. The floral painted clothes cabinet adds to the trellis, because it is often that vines are allowed to climb a garden trellis. The trending concept of inside-out can be achieved here with the trellis giving the room the appearance of a garden, and the pedestal marble planter completing the look. The accentuation is floral patterning with the cane furniture too set on coir matting. This trellised wall brings in a breath of fresh air and serene bewilderment.

Minimalist Concept

For the minimalist look and yet giving it character, is the plaster of Paris embossment vertical curving patterned lines on the wall. It augments the sleek minimalist look. It adds curves to the neat lines of the walls, the angular furniture and the plain leatherette single seater couches. This textured wall is used to enhance the monotone starkness of white, which runs as the central theme and minimalist concept. The layering is minimal with cushions, the artifacts are few, the contrast are the black couches and the highlights are the subtle natural wood stub placed as a stool and the matching onyx square lamp pedestal to match. So here it is clearly white tone, with black contrast and defined lines for the wall as well as furniture.