Useful Tips For Photographing Your Home.

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Who wouldn’t want to see their homes showcased in those fancy home magazines or have everyone on your social media platforms pleased to like and share your home? Well, it doesn’t mean that you live a little less good than the ones whose homes keep looking spectacular for home magazines. It just means that you might not have the skills of a good photographer. In as much as your selfies look great, your home is different and needs attention to detail. The below tips will help you achieve what you always imagine of your home.  They will make home photographing not such a mystery any more.

  1. Invest in good camera.

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No matter how good your house may appear, it needs a little boost from a good camera. You do not have to break your bank just for a day or two of taking photos. You could have the alternative of borrowing from a friend or hiring one which will be a lot cheaper than purchasing one. Your smartphone could be taking clear photos yes, but a good camera will go a long way.

  1. Concentrate on lighting.
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The best lighting your home could have is the natural light. Focus on the area of your house where there is natural lighting like next to a window or directly opposite to the window. If the lighting in your home isn’t that good, invest in sheers as they are very good at reflecting light.

  1. Clean your house first.

A photo is the exact replica of the image it displays. You cannot take a photo of a dirty place and expect a photo of a clean house. Clean and clear any mess first before taking a photo. Make sure your home is clutter free. If you are looking to rent out your home as an inn, or put out your place in an ad, then it is better to have a clean photo that will depict a relaxing environment.

  1. Have a center of focus.

It is not necessary for you to have a photo of your entire house. Select a corner in one of your rooms specifically the sitting room or bedroom depending on the purpose of the photo. A good idea is to get a professional to stage that area for you so that it can appear eye-catching. Let your photo be the one to tell the story about your home. You could use artificial lighting for a perfect place that has no natural lighting.

  1. Get rid of the background distractions.

Not every piece of art, furniture or hanging should be included in the photo. In fact, the photo should only have whatever you are trying to showcase with just one more piece. In short, your photo shouldn’t be too busy as it might have some element of distraction to the viewer’s eyes. Look for things like too many books on the study table, utensils from the dinner table or too much wall paintings. Your tables and shelves should be clear of anything that is not meant to stick around during the  home photography session.

 

  1. Find your point of interest.

There are that one or two things that are the reason for your photography. Be keen on it and try and enhance its beauty. If you want a photo of your face, for instance, you have to add a little touch of makeup just to enhance your appearance. The same case applies to home photography. If you are focusing on the dining area, add something like a single flower vase on top of the table of course with a table runner beneath it to make it look welcoming. You could add a few throw pillows on your couch if it’s the center of focus for you.

  1. Seek advice from a professional.

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Professionals know how to do things better as it is in their line of work. Seek advice from a professional so as to know how you will prioritize your angles. Not all angles are to be included in the photo no matter how pleasing they are. Prioritizing your photos and arranging them in that manner will create an understanding of the viewer.

  1. Do a little décor.

You can choose to have some little bit of time to do some slight décor before the photography. This includes changing the color of your curtains, putting up a wallpaper, substituting your lights with brighter ones or even some few fixtures here and there. All this is for the benefit of achieving good results.

  1. Take sample photos.

You would not know how your home may look like on a photo and you might probably concentrate on one area leaving out a better one. The best way to avoid this kind of scenario is to take photos of every corner of your room and lay them down to access the best place of photography. This will also save you the time of having to stage each area just for a shoot that will not be used.

  1. Have some fun.

It is a professional photo, no dispute in that but also have some fun while doing it. It is a good experience to have time ‘bonding’ with your home as well. This might even give you some decorating ideas which will bring a whole new and improved look. Don’t be so uptight and be willing to learn and get a few tips from your designer as well.

Wouldn’t you have that satisfaction of achievement when you see your home online and clients buzzing over it just to have a taste of the real-life experience in your home? These tips will really come in handy for you as you go about posting your home online for an advert. Do some research on the home magazines and get to see their photos just to have an idea of how to display your home as well. This should be a wonderful and learning experience for you as you go about marketing your home.

Too Many Kids At Home How To Keep it Clean

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If you have a messy house it means that you have kids living and loving life and that is a good thing. It is possible to maintain a clean house with kids. Here are a few tips on how to get about it. Let’s get started.

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Routine

Start doing the routines while the kids are still very young  because this is the main reason why people do the daily routines. This is important if you want to keep your house clean and organized. You cannot spend all the time cleaning the house because you need time to spend with the kids as well. For example, go to the movies, go to the playground read books together and have fun times together. It’s highly recommended to get dressed first after waking up unlike working in your bedtime clothes because you tend to do the tasks faster. Routines reduce the tasks from being an overwhelming mess.

Regularly get rid of things that you and your kids do not use or need

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Learn to get rid of things that you don’t like, need or use and you will be surprised how much space you will have. After a while, you will notice what your child doesn’t need or use anymore. The best times to do this are before their birthdays and Christmas because you are going to get more clothes more gifts coming in. So it is a great chance to get rid of the things you are not using.

 

Have  a regular clean day routine

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This is great to do before a nap or before going to bed. Have your children put away everything before going to bed, give them a ten-minute warning. For the smaller kids who do not understand what ten minutes mean, use words like in, “a little while “for them not to be hesitant.

Take laundry, for example, have a hamper where they throw their dirty clothes in their room. This should happen when they change their clothes, they should not leave the clothes on the floor. Dishes should be put away after dinner, lunch breakfast is done and no dishes should be let to sit. Let the kids handle the little plastic containers when they want to help with the dishes. Kids often times want to help.We should always give them a chance to and have a little patience, encourage them while at it and have fun as well.

 

Make tidying fun

Put their favorite music that plays especially for the specific time for cleaning up. Set a timer and tell them we are going to stop cleaning when the timer goes off. Make it more fun and interesting. Break down the roles of collecting all the blue colored toys then all the green colored ones then finish up with the red ones. This will make it less overwhelming for them.

 

Make things easy to put away

Make the toys more reachable to the kids. Do not make it complicated. Have bins where everything goes.

For younger kids have a picture of what needs to go in the specific bin because they do not know how to read. In this case, they will know where everything belongs. In that way, it will be easier for them.

Set a timer

Using a timer is great for both you and your kids. For you when you are doing your morning routines if it’s cleaning the bathroom, making the bed, you can knock it all off in fifteen minutes depending on how fast you are. It is great for your kids if  you tell them how much time they have on the task and they are going to hurry up and they will be done in a short time.

Another good way of using a timer is when the child knows that when the timer goes off its time to play with their parent so they will be looking forward to this times. This is such a great idea with your kids.

Put things away before you get another task out

Get in the habit of making the kids clean up after the current task before moving to the next. They will get into the habit of doing this until it becomes a rule.

Put a basket in their room

Put a basket in their room where all the little things go in. Things that they get from their Sunday school or gift wrappings. If they are in school they also get little staff that they collect these things end up as clutter.

 

Take pictures of your kids with their school project

That way you can get rid of them. When they are younger they would want to keep them for longer. Keep scrapbooks of the project and show them when they group up as an alternative.

 

Give rewards

Children can be rewarded for the efforts they make towards keeping the place tidy or cleaning up after playtime around the house. Rewards can be given in forms of gifts or points on other benefits like candy. This is positive re-enforcement and they will always make an effort of picking after themselves keeping in mind that it is rewarding.

Creating Designated play areas

Space for play doesn’t have to be plenty. Specific areas in the house can be selected to be play areas and the children are allowed to only play in those specific areas. This, however, needs discipline as children have a tendency of sometimes not really listening to specific instructions so a clear explanation and emphasis is important to be explained to the children to have them understand the importance of having those play areas specific to playing.

This limits the toys to specific places in the house, therefore, making it easy to clean after them after playing hence keeping the house clean. Play areas also don’t always have to be just indoors. Children may be encouraged to play outside if there is enough compound space close by. That way the house doesn’t always have to be littered because the kids are everywhere

 

Tips For Hiring A Pest Control Professional.

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Getting rid of pests can seem like a really easy thing if the problem is not that serious. In some cases, the damage may be so severe forcing you to consult a professional. Other instances that might result in having to get a professional is when you have to use pesticides that can only be handled by a certified pest controller. Getting that professional is not easy like a walk in the park as you really have to be careful with who you choose and their experience among other factors to consider. Here are some guidelines to help you through the process of hiring pest control professionals.

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Before you settle on the technician, get to look at his documents such as his identification and the validity of his operating license. That is what will show you how reliable he is since an up to date license proves that he is current on his training. A professional will always have a report on the service undertaken, any prevention remedies and follow up appointments if need be, soon as he is through with his job. This should be followed by an invoice.

Go for a technician that has many recommendations on his website if he has any or rather you could ask your friends to refer you to a good technician. If you do not have any means of doing so, ask to see a portfolio from the technician you have gotten and follow up on one or two of his customers. This will assure you of his work and how professional and thorough it is. This way you will hardly experience disappointments afterward.

  1. Be keen on the safety of the chemicals used.

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Before spraying any pesticides in your home, enquire what chemicals your technician is using and get to know the following:

  • What exactly is contained in that chemical?
  • Have the chemicals been tested and approved by the state?
  • Are they effective in eradicating the pests at hand?
  • Can the chemical leave traces that might have a long-term effect on your health?

All that will help you in deciding whether or not you will go for them.

We always have everything on a budget. Even for issues like pests, you shouldn’t have to break your bank for you to enjoy the service. On the other hand, a very low pricing might also mean poor or no results. Get a professional that will take you through their pricing system, either quarterly or annually depending on how affected your home or office or whatever area you want pests eliminated is. By that, you are able to set aside the funds to cater for it without overstretching your financial ability.

  1. Do due diligence on individuals.

Opting for an individual as your pest control technician is a bit of a risk. You should, therefore, be extremely cautious about this. Take time to know their background, have their credentials and scrutinize them keenly before allowing the technician in your home. Also access him personally, his overall, his mode of detecting pests and his confidence in recommending the solution to the problem and how effective it will be. Also, have everything on paper including a contract.

  1. Seek advice from your technician.

Once we notice of a pest problem, we always want it solved immediately. As much as pests are a nuisance, we should take time and get some sound advice from our technician. It is not a must that chemicals be used at the site of pests. The pest controller could have other alternatives that do not necessarily have to involve chemicals. They should also give you any preventive measures to avoid the pests from coming back.

For long-term services, it is advisable for you to get a fully detailed contract which includes information such as the duration of the contract, how many visits it will take during that duration, cost, duration of the guarantee after the service and other terms and conditions of the service. Be sure that the contract also covers you in instances where the service might be ineffective and have it signed and stamped with both you and the company. Read it carefully so as to understand before signing.

  1. Get prepared for a temporary stay.

Some technicians may advise that you get to leave your home for a week or two as they do the job. You should be ready with plans on where to move your family for the time being with finances to cater for your stay at a motel or at a relative’s place. This will make sure that you don’t get overwhelmed on the last minute in terms of having to move your valuable items out of the way as well.

  1. Do a survey of your own.

You could think that your house is the only place that pests have invaded. Yes, it is the work of the technician to get to know the source of the problem but at times they may miscalculate. The advantage here is that you know your home and it’s surrounding better than he does. Take time to look around the area and have it down so that you can also guide your technician on where the pests might have originated from since pests like to hide during the daytime.

  1. Try home remedies first.

Before consulting a technician, you might want to try one of those home remedies for getting rid of pests. Inquire from neighbors with a past experience of the same. The pests might be too many but the remedy to get rid of them can be so simple.

As long as you get one of the above tips and use it, you are good to go. Keep your entire surrounding clean, clear any stagnant water and get rid of any mess before it turns out to be a feeding hub for pests. Be sure to also clean the dark areas of your house as you do your chores just to counter check of any signs of inhabitation. As they say, prevention is better than cure.

Tips for cleaning a painted wall

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Remember that moment when your kids proudly run to get you to showcase their artwork on your wall? Albeit it is the same moment you try to balance between a smile and a cry for help. You start wondering how you are going to get the crayon marks off without messing the paint, and leaving it that way is not an option. Well, today you are in luck; all you have to stress about now is how to know whether the drawing is a giraffe or a lizard. Generally, whether you are a parent or not; it is vital for you to know how to clean your walls.

Stains happen, they are part of life. And again, you might shift to a new home and don’t have the resources to renovate, cleaning the walls will hugely help improve the look. With that said though, there should be a fine line between knowing when to renovate and when cleaning is needed. Good news is, paint is very reliable and long lasting. Therefore, it is a healthy habit to maintain it. Prevention is better than cure; so, if your walls are still in a good state, ensure to keep it that way. Don’t wait until they scream ‘wash me’, simply act on stains as soon as they happen. Knowing how to clean your wall literally puts you a step forward than most people, it’s an important yet a much-underrated task. Here are ways you can show some love to your walls.

Dust the walls

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This is the first thing you do before involving water and a cleaner and actually, the easiest way to restore your paint job. If your walls are not in a bad condition, just vacuuming the ceiling and walls will cut it. While vacuuming is the most popular method, there are alternatives that you can choose from. You could use a microfiber cloth to wipe, a mop, a lambswool duster, or a broom covered with a towel. Before you start dusting, remember to cover your furniture and if possible, pull them away from the wall. There are various patterns of dusting that will get the work done. You can try moving along the wall in a ‘W’ pattern. This is where you start at the top of one corner, then move down and over, then up and over in a continuous motion. Nevertheless, choose the one that suits you best.

Take care of stains

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After dusting you can now introduce water and detergents. However, instead of washing the entire wall (which may be very unnecessary) or work blindly, it is best to start with stains. Deal with them individually. It’s not rocket science to know what works for crayon stain will not do it for grease and oil. Here are some ways you can deal with some stains:

How to remove crayon stain

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Removing crayon stain is actually easier than it looks. Moreover, there are so many ways you can carefully take care of the stain. Some of the methods are so easy you will hardly require any elbow grease. For instance, simply rub some mayonnaise on the crayon marks. Come back after a few minutes and all you’ll have to do is wipe the wall with a damp cloth. And hurray! Your wall is spotless. Alternatively, turn to your all-purpose cleaner, vinegar. It is one of the best ways to remove crayon stain. The acid in it breaks down both the wax and pigment components of the crayon. You can use your blow dryer or disposable cleaning erasers.

How to remove grease and oil stains

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Oil stain is as damaging as other stains; in fact, it can degrade your wall so bad making it look very ugly. The stain comes in contact with your walls in many walls. It can be just from body oil or while you are cooking it gets a splash, doesn’t really matter. Good news, any decent dishwashing soap can remove the grease stain. All you have to do is mix some dish soap and water, then wipe. If the stain is stubborn, you can make a mixture of vinegar, baking soda and a gallon of water. Wipe the solution over the walls with a cloth or sponge, and rinse.

Removing water stain

Leaky ceiling and basements mostly lead to watermarks and stains on your painted walls. They are very unsightly and can be very tough to remove. After solving the problem that’s causing the leakage, you can then take care of the stain. Create a cleaning mixture to rid the stain. Take a gallon of warm water and add a mixture of 1 cup of white distilled vinegar, ½ a cup of ammonia and 1 cup of baking soda. Clean the wall with the mixture using a clean cloth. If the damage to your paint is too much, you may have to cover it.

Clean fingerprints

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If you live in a house, you can easily stain them with a touch of dirty hands. You will have the best results in keeping your walls rid of fingerprint stain as soon as they happen. With that considered, you will be grateful to always have a packet of baby wipes. They are designed to clean skin and will often break down the oils in fingerprints and clean them off surprisingly well. If the stain has set, you can make a mixture of ammonia and warm water. Using a microfiber cloth, use a circular motion to scrub gently. Then dry immediately after rinse.

Removing molds

Having mold grow on your walls is not only unsightly but also unhealthy, especially for an asthmatic person. Prepare for cleaning by removing the future around the affected place. Then wear protective gloves, goggles, and a mask to prevent breathing the fungi. Start by mixing water and detergent in a spray bottle. Spray the area and scrub the mold off with a rug. Next, make a solution of 1 part bleach to two parts water and spray on the affected area. Leave it for some time—bleach kills fungi, then rinse with a spray bottle with water. Dry with a clean towel.

Those are some ways you can keep your walls clean and stainless. Ensure to check on your walls from time to time, to prevent a tough time when cleaning later.

 

 

 

Smart Ways To Use Bleach At Home

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Bleach is a great product for maintaining a healthy and clean home. It’s mostly used during laundry but you’ll be surprised at how much more it can do. It is one of those products you either love or hate. Some people are reluctant in maximizing its use due to lack of knowledge on how to use the stuff. Nevertheless, bleach can come in very handy in solving major common problems experienced in our homes. However, we can’t ignore the fact that some people have concerns about how safe it is to use bleach around children and pets. It is definitely safe but the best way to solve problems with bleach is by not making certain mistakes, otherwise, you can be assured of good harmless results.

For instance, you should never directly pour undiluted bleach on a stain or using a bleach gel pen which lets you target its bleaching power directly to the stain. Another mistake is not checking the care label for a white triangle which means its bleach safe. Regardless of your cloth being white, there are fabrics like leather or wool that don’t mix well with bleach. One other common mistake made is by not measuring bleach when using it. And, of course, it is no brainer to keep all chemical out of reach of children. Otherwise, when you use bleach well, it can do so much more than whiten your clothes. Here are smart ways you can use the product.

Sanitizer

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Bleach is composed of a sodium hypochlorite solution, which provides a cheap and easy way to sanitize surfaces in your home. Additionally, it can deodorize at the same time. Although for you to use it safely, it must be diluted correctly. It should strong enough to sanitize and weak enough not to be too harsh. Sensitive places in your home, such as the kitchen and bathroom will really do with a cleaner that can double as a sanitizer and deodorant. Simply mix 1 gallon of warm water with a ¾ cup of chlorine and apply on the surface you want it cleaned. An addition of a detergent can be made but it’s not necessary. For a small mixture, such as to put in a spray bottle, probably to clean your toilet, simply add one and a half tablespoons of bleach to 2 cups of water. While cleaning, note that sanitizing with bleach is not instantaneous, but instead it needs time to set. Therefore, you can just sprite your toilet every night before you sleep and clean it in the morning. It will easily be clean without much effort from you.

In Washing Cutlery

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By adding a little bleach in a basin full of water, you can easily clean your cutlery. If you have a favorite cup like me, you know how sad it can be to see it stained with coffee. Coffee and tea stains seem and are stubborn for just dish soap. therefore soak them in the water with bleach for a few minutes. Then wash as usual and rinse thoroughly. While due to its perfect results it may seem to have been manufactured only to take care of such stains, but it’s also good with your glassware. After cleaning them, soak the glasses in a light bleach solution. Rinse well and you will have sparkling glasses. This can also come through when washing windows. Simply add a little in the final water and watch the glass shine.

 

Removing Mold

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Mildew and mold are not only disgusting to look at but also pose harm to your health. Therefore, there’s the great need to remove it as soon as you sport it. Bleach will immensely help in killing the fungus. Frankly, both bleach and ammonia are perfect for the job but you should never use both at the same time. After you have wet the affected area, cleaned it with detergent and a disposable towel or wipe, you can then spray the bleach. Let it sit for 15 minutes then scrub with a stiff brush and rinse off. Ensure you thoroughly dry the place, especially if it is your window panes.

For Swimming Pool And Cut Flowers

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Chlorine bleach has a beautiful way of keeping the pool water clear as long as possible, mostly during winter when it’s rarely in use. Simply add a 5-liter bottle of bleach to your swimming pool water once a month and keep your water crystal clear through winter. Then you can revert the water when summer or spring is around the corner. Using the same knowledge, a bit of bleach can be used to cut flowers. It helps in keeping the water clean longer.

In laundry

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Bleach is commonly known for its effectiveness when using it for laundry. If you have a stain on a white cloth, simply soak overnight or for some few minutes then launder as usual. You will have a whiter spotless cloth.

Disinfectant

Before you start disinfecting garden tools and other stuff, you should start by cleaning them if they have a lot of dirt or organic materials. Failure to do so, the bleach will not sanitize properly. This is because it is deactivated by large amounts of dirt. You can use bleach to disinfect your garden tools at most once a year to reduce the risk of spreading plant diseases. When you want to reuse a flower pot, you can soak it in bleach to kill existing germs. Additionally, you can disinfect anything plastic that you have bought as second-hand.

Sterilize drinking water

For developing countries, with families that neither have the privilege of fresh water nor the resources to boil it, chlorine is a cheap and good way of sterilizing water. A half teaspoon of bleach to four gallons of water will be safe enough to drink.

Cleaning chopping boards

Bleach does a good job of cleaning wooden chopping boards. Butchers can really benefit when using bleach on their chopping board. All you do is pour the bleach and watch the stains disappear effortlessly. Although you should wash it again with a detergent and rinse it thoroughly before use.

 

The above are the smart ways you can use bleach in your home. After serving its purpose always keep it under lock and key.

Reasons Why Your Home Decor Looks Anything But Cohesive

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Many of us will enter into a friend’s home and will feel that we have jumped into a new environment. The home looks so good, it even smells better. When reality hits you about how your house looks like and you definitely notice the great difference even more. The difference is only the arrangement and decoration. So what causes one’s own arrangement to feel inferior down hearting oneself? Here are a few tips on why you may be doing it wrong compared to the friend above.

Color clashing

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This is the very common mistake made by many especially the men. Being a man you may have probably been accused a couple of times by a lady of being color blind. Clashing the color especially in the table room can make the even visitors feel uncomfortable when chatting. So find someone who will mix match the right colors for your home interior to create harmony.

Being a copycat

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When decorating your home be yourself and do it to your liking and preference. The problem with most people is trying to make their home look like their friends or their neighbors. They end up making a huge mess of their home. Try and find and experiment with your own style that you will be proud of and find out how easy it is for everything to fall into place with no struggle. It also will give you a sense of belonging and pride when you sit and have friends around.

Inadequate space

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The conception that having a lot of items defines your success is still a major barrier to décor cohesion at home. Having too many things makes it impossible to have a well arranged and decorated home. You will find places with two or three sets of furniture in a single room making it too crowded and difficult to move around. Even if you try your best to decorate it, you will find that it is still not appealing to the eye. It is better to go for quality than quantity. You can decide to have a single set to each of high quality rather than many low-quality furniture pieces.

Over-ambitiousness

This is a problem to those who often like to take in new concepts. They tend to have many photographs with them and try to have their home to look exactly like the photo. In the end, it tends to become worse than their original decoration. Others even try to blend two or three concepts hoping to bring out the ultimate but it hardly works as those are ideas from different people.

The imbalance between the new and the old

Some people may opt to go with a lot of old furniture and a few of the new ones or vice versa. Mixing furniture in such a way may create a confusing environment. It is preferred to go with a single way either use the modern furniture or the old. If you mix by any chance make them appear in harmony.

Furniture contrast

The contrast found in some houses among the furniture is another good example why your décor may not be in cohesion. Having every piece of furniture made of wood apart from a single metallic chair creates an imbalance in the house. The metallic chair will seem out of place and many people will avoid it as one will feel uncomfortable and in most of the case will be the center of attention around the room.

Inadequate lighting

Lighting in a home determines the mood of the atmosphere. Gloomy lighting may be viewed or associated with dull functions whereas bright lights can be associated with fun, enjoyable occasions. Make sure you light your house to the occasion. Let the lights in your house be a reflection of the occasion. The color of the light also plays a part in the cohesion of your décor. Choose the best color for you and make sure it gives just the right amount of light needed.

Inconsistent design style

Some people may think to have a different color or paint in different rooms of the home is a good thing. It may seem good but there is a feeling when you move from the living room to the bathroom then to the kitchen you are in a totally different world. The kitchen seems out of place as it does not match with the living room so does the bedroom and bathroom. It is advisable to try and come up with a major theme color to go all around the house. This also includes your flooring. It is advisable to have the same tile color across the house. You can still use different types of the floor like tiles and wood but make sure their color is in harmony.

Excess hanging art

People love to put up family portraits from antics they have acquired from trips and things that are just for fun like shells, animal horns among other things. They may be a positive addition to your décor yet still they can be disastrous. The antics are a symbol meant to signify something special but when they become too many they lose meaning and become as any other junk around the house. This is especially if you do not hang them in a specific place but you just put them up anywhere across the home. Try and have at least not more than five in a single room. You can hang your art the right way by choosing only a few relevant pieces.

 

We all desire our homes to have the perfect décor. When we take into consideration the aforementioned points we will have the home we all desire. Some of the points to consider are actually very simple to put into practice as they require no financial input. Let us try to produce that perfect outlook we all wish our homes look like rather than just admiring the magazine portfolio of the home decors we wish to have.

Living Room Centerpiece Ideas That You Should Try Out

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Just as the name suggests, the living room is a place where you spend your most time relaxing or watching a movie. It is also an area where your guests see first immediately they enter your home hence the living room should be a center of attraction to both you and the outsiders. Here are some creative ideas which you can try out for your living room to have a lively look.

  1. Get bright colored curtains.

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First and foremost, you should have curtains that enhance the brightness of the room to compliment on both the natural light and the bulb lights. You may choose to have floral sheers without any heavy curtain or have a floral sheer and a plain bright colored heavy curtain which you can draw during the day.

One big portrait at the center of the wall in your living room is the best idea ever as it becomes the focal point of almost everything. Get an eye-catching portrait. If you do not have any idea of a portrait that would best suit your living room, you could get some advice from the store. Make sure one of your couch faces the portrait so that you could also enjoy the view as you are relaxing.

Have a sizeable sofa, one that is not too big or too small, depending with your room size.  You can have it leaning on a wall that faces your main wall or put it at the center of your living room. Get a colorful sofa but be sure that the color matches everything surrounding it. Do not have the same colors in your living room to avoid monotony. You can choose two or three colors that blend well together and play around with them to create a perfect balance.

  1. Table design.

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Get a glass table and make sure it’s thick enough to hold one or two ceramic decorations on it. You could also put a single flower vase on top. However, if you have kids around, it is better that you get a wooden table instead just to avoid incidences like falling on the table as your kids are laying around. Place the table in front of your sofa but not too close.

  1. Go for T.V mounting.

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For your living room not to seem so overcrowded, you could opt for a T.V mount instead. It should be mounted right in front of your couch where everyone can have a view of it. Do not have it too high or too low to avoid straining your neck. Get an expert to do that for you just to be sure that it is safely secured on the mounts.

If you are a fan of fireplaces and your living room does not have one, you can create one for yourself of course by the help of an interior designer. You could have it just slightly on one side of your room. It doesn’t necessarily have to be at the center since you will have your television there. If you are not a T.V fun then the center of your house will be okay for you. Do not leave your fireplace bare. Decorate it with either photos of you and your family on top or some flower vase which would also look good.

  1. Create a formal sitting area.

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If your space allows, you could seclude an area like maybe just behind your couch and place single couches or seats and a small table at the center just for you and your friends to enjoy a good conversation. A vintage design of this would blend really well with your room. You could get a stand containing a few books to read or a bookshelf and make that place a meeting point for you and your book club members.

  1. Seclude a playing pen for your baby.

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Your baby or toddler shouldn’t have to stay locked up in her room while playing. You can have a small area in your living room and have baby friendly decorations, a rocking horse or whatever your kid loves just for her to feel like part of the family. Put up a few photos that she likes on the wall that her area faces. Secure that pace with a small picket fence just for it to look like her own territory since kids love being territorial.

On your centerpieces like the portraits and photos, get some small bulbs and place them beneath or above those items just for emphasis. The lights should be a bit brighter than your main light to create that theatre theme. Opt to go for different colors of lights but make sure they blend well to avoid color clashing. Do not however put so many of those lights around the house as you will be overdoing it. Just focus on the main attractions in that room.

Chandeliers are not only limited to dining areas or the kitchen or the wide hallway to your living room. Having a big and elaborate one at the center point of your living room’s ceiling will compliment every single piece in your room. If your ceiling is too high, get a low hanging chandelier to avoid one having to look up very high just to see it. Get one that is a bit higher if your ceiling is low to avoid knocking your head over it as you go around your house.

These are a few ideas to help you bring your living room to life. Make sure you use your space wisely. Do not overcrowd it or leave it so bare and plain. Balance everything up from color to the size of your furniture and lighting. Before beginning to decorate, go for more options so that you can comfortably settle on the most suitable one for you and your family.

 

Ways To Make Your Storage Cabinets More Space Efficient.

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You may look at your cabinets and see that they are full. But take a closer second look. The problem might be that you do not know how to maximize that space that you have or even make use of it. There are better ways of storing your stuff without having to re-build your cabinets. You do not necessarily have to have a whole room as a pantry. Some of the ideas below will have you surprised on how much space you have been wasting.

  1. Arrange according to size and shape.

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Have items that are of same size and shape in one level of the cabinets to make sure that they perfectly fit. Putting different shapes of jars in one level may end up consuming a lot of space as they will not perfectly interlock with each other.

  1. Prioritize your items.

To avoid re-arranging your cabinet every time you want to get something, ensure that you have the most used items on the lower part of your cabinet and in the front line. This will help in keeping your kitchen always looking organized.

  1. Get organizers.

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These are big boxes found at the store and can be used to store very many things that when kept out in the open on the cabinets will tend to make the place look clumsy and unkept. However, their efficiency, try and arrange the stuff in there as well so that one box can accommodate a reasonable number of items.

  1. Get rid of plastic bags when storing dry food.

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Organizing foodstuff in plastic bags or even the grocery bags will look so untidy and is not even healthy for you. Try putting things like biscuits, beans, or dried peas in mason jars to make the place look attractive and well managed. The best kinds of jars are the clear ones so you can be able to see what you can add to your next grocery list.

This may sound weird but having some small lights either underneath each cabinet or wherever you want to place them will be a good idea. This will make the place look more spacious. It is also a good way of avoiding any bugs that like crawling in dark places causing damage like cockroaches. The lights do not have to be too bright. Just have medium light bulbs.

  1. Keep your shoe boxes.

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For the shoe cabinets, it is better that you keep your shoe boxes because they come in handy especially for the shoes that you rarely wear. Place those on the topmost shelf. Ensure that you clean that place from time to time to avoid accumulated dust.

  1. Add hooks for convenience.

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For items like pans, cake spatulas, and grill forks, you can choose to add hooks and hang them there instead of having them lying flat on the cabinets. The hooks should be placed in very strategic and safe places out of reach of children as the heavy pans may drop on them while they are playing around.

  1. Seek for extra spaces.

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You can have your DIY shelves in other places that do not make the place seem too overcrowded like at the corners of your kitchen, behind or over the doors. Put a rubber stopper on the door to prevent bagging the door to the shelf.

  1. Opt for hooks in the garage.

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Tools in the garage should be stored with a lot of caution as some of them are sharp and heavy. The best way to store them is by hanging them on hooks according to their use, size and how frequently needed they are. This is will ensure enough space for your car and your children’s bikes without having to knock any protruding cabinets over.

  1. Have inbuilt cabinets in your kid’s bedroom.

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To avoid clustering of clothes in one tiny place. You could think of going for beds that have cabinets on or underneath them. Things like toys and inner garments can fit there perfectly. Avoid places where you have to place things out in the open if they are not being used just to make sure their room looks spacious and not clumsy.

  1. Get pull down or sliding racks for smaller books.

The study room or ‘library’ can look very messy especially for the bookworms. The best idea here is to arrange your books in order on the shelf. However, you may choose to have sliding racks underneath your desk to store those small books or those with lesser volume.

  1. Closet Rods.

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Closet rods ensures that you have a lot of hanging space. You may choose to add one more rod that can carry a few shirts, trousers or dresses either beneath your original rod or underneath it if space allows. Let the added rod have the same inches as the initial rod just to have uniformity.

  1. Place the medicine cabinet in your room.

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This is meant for both safety and convenience. It is commonly kept in the bathroom with a mirror on the front. You can have a fast aid kit box and make a pullout rack on the side of it between the box and the wall. Do not place it very low where your kids would easily reach. You could even opt for a lockable micro-fridge in your room for medicine that has to be stored in there.

 

You wouldn’t have an excuse for not having to use up your space well with all those tips. Try as much as possible to be creative. If you have any difficulties in making your own shelf, you could call a handyman for help. Ensure that your cabinets are tightly fit to prevent incidences where the cabinet will fall off with everything in it. Get to know how many items you want in a cabinet to help you choose the right material to use when installing one.

Creative Ways To Spruce Up Your Home Flower Pots

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Have you ever walked into a room and had your breath taken away? It happens. Live houseplants and flowers in a beautiful pot are always good for your home and will achieve exactly that. They add color and give off a good homely, natural vibe. Moreover, the scent and fresh air come as a blessing to your family and guests. Often, when we talk about decorating our homes, we can easily think of everything else than plants. Yes, many have disregarded the transformation a simple home flower pot can do. Understandably though, it might be because of the effort required to care for the plant. Regardless, you wouldn’t want to miss on the magic a home flower pot can do. Health benefits of houseplants and flowers aside, they can seriously step up the overlook of your home.

By just adding a few details to your home flower pots, you will have a breathtaking space. I have noticed that people (I included at one point) have home flower pots but feel there is something missing like it’s just not good enough. You want something that matches your personality and should be good for the flower too. Well, I learned that you can easily deal with that. Faced with a sea of choices and limited funds, I was down to using what I already had. And my pots were great; just felt too plain. Therefore, I looked for ways to spruce them up and you’ll be amazed at what I came up with. With spring in the air, you don’t have to re-pot your plants. Here are some creative do-it-yourself ways you can bring life to them.

Paint

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Let’s get practical, after a neighbor springs for a new exterior paint job, it doesn’t take long for you to see everyone else standing out in front of their house with paint brochures and color swatches. Why? The answer is quite simple. A good paintwork can transform the appearance of any item in question by beautifying, adding character and personality to it. In the same way, you can transform your ordinary flowerpots into works of art with just some masking tape and spray paint. Before painting them, consider if the color will coincide with your existing décor. You can then take your plain pot and give it a new coat of paint. As you are at it, ensure that the surface is dry and free from dirt. Then apply a uniform coat of paint and let it dry. The paint should last for several years but if you are adventurous and love the change from time to time; just repeat the process. But you might consider removing the existing one before a new paint job.

If you want to make your pots even more decorative, you can use painter’s tape to create a two-toned pattern. Start by covering the rim of the pot with the tape, and then apply the first coat of color. Once the paint is dry, cover that part with a newspaper and the tape leaving the rim exposed. Go ahead and paint the rim with a different shade or color. After it has dried, remove the masking, and there you have a beautiful 2-toned flower pot. There’s so much you can do with paint; be open-minded and go for what the heart wants. It is about making you happy anyway.

Use fabric

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Using fabric is a great way of transforming your plain pots into a colorful statement piece for your home by adding character and texture to them. There are various ways you can play around with your fabrics and come up with something uniquely beautiful. My favorite is covering it with fabric strips of different attractive colors. But you can, of course, go as wide as your imagination and creativity take you, as long as it’s visually attractive though. Basically, you will have to use some adhesive to the area of the pot that you need to be covered and place the fabric on top. Before using the fabric, you can paint the pot for it to coincide with the fabric if need be.

Use a knitted cover

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For more uniqueness, you can have a knitted cover for your flower pots. You can choose a cover of different or same color. Knitting limits your pot to have one texture, regardless; you can have the cover knitted in different patterns. The upsides of having knitted covers are that you can have as many as you want since they are affordable and can easily get cleaned when they get dirty. This makes you pot look good and new as long as the cover is in good condition. It is as easy as eating pie.

Use glitters

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You can decorate your flower pots with glitter just to make them stand out a bit. I’d suggest you start by painting them first for a better-polished look. Glue the pieces to the bottom part of the planter in random patterns. Use a painter’s tape to get a clean line at the bottom.

Wrap a rope

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Wrapping a rope around your planter is an easy way of transforming it in a classic way. You can wrap the whole pot with a rope or some sort of twine; yet to add the texture you can include a wrapping paper. All you have to do is wrap the planter in the paper and trim the edges. Then using a glue gun, attach the rope around the top half of the planter.

Use burlap

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I personally love using burlap because of its simplicity that makes a big impact. Wrapping your pot with burlap and adding some ribbon can make your flower pots look really cute and elegant. It is quite easy to do and there are so many ways to embellish them. Just keep it simple by twine or jute to tie up the burlap. You can also use a chevron burlap ribbon and make a big bow for your pot.

There are so many ways you can add color to your flower pots. Incorporate some of the ones listed and watch the overlook of your space transform.

 

 

 

 

Common Dishwashing Mistakes That You Are Making.

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Dishwashers were invented to make our work easier and not going through all that hustle of having to clean everything within a limited time. However, there are very many mistakes that we do as we are using it which probably do not come with the manual. Most homeowners are very ignorant of dishwashing practices that most of the time they make cringe-worthy mistakes that end up causing long-term effects health wise, or on the dishwashing functionality.  Here are a few pointers on the mistakes that we probably do unknowingly.

  1. Everything In The Dishwasher

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Packing up everything in the dishwasher just to make use of every inch of space doesn’t work. Some of the dishes might not get cleaned as the dishwashing soap might not reach them. Put a reasonable number of dishes to ensure that all your utensils are perfectly cleaned. It is also not a good idea to put lesser items in a dishwasher as this may cause breakage when the dishes are moving around in there.

  1. Do not thoroughly clean your greasy dishes.

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Avoid cleaning the grease off from your bowls completely. This also includes scrubbing them. Leave some of the work for the dishwasher. After all, what is the dishwasher for? However, if you feel hand-washing them is better especially if they have stubborn grease stains, then by all means do it.

  1. Clean your dishwasher.

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Make sure you clean your dishwasher from time to time to avoid coating the dishwasher with dirt from your dishes. You wouldn’t expect a dirty dishwasher to clean your utensils. The best method of cleaning it is to use vinegar and baking soda. You can also go to the stores for advice on what else to use. This will also prevent bad odor in there.

  1. Keep iron pans away from the dishwasher.

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The best way to handle iron pans is by hand washing them. It is not a good idea to wash them in a dishwasher as this may shorten their lifespan by making them seem faded. This also applies to non-stick pans with carbon coating which can be easily scraped off after a while. Do not also use very harsh liquid soap when cleaning them. If they are too greasy, you can use lemon and a little bit of soap with warm water for better results.

  1. Pre-wash.

Make it a habit to pre-wash the plates or spoons that have that stubborn food stain before placing them in the dishwasher. This will ensure thorough cleaning is done in the dishwasher. As earlier stated, do not entirely clean your plates. Just pass them through water and a soft cloth.

  1. Avoid putting light plastics in the washer.

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Keep plastics away from the dishwasher especially the very light ones as the heat in the dryer might melt the plastic and damage your machine. Hand wash your plastics and dry them completely before storing them. If you could completely try and avoid them, it would be a very good idea health wise. Remember when plastic melts it lets off some toxins which might not be healthy for you especially if you are using the plastic for food.

  1. Sort out your dishes.

Just as you sort out your clothes before putting them in the dry cleaner, do the same for your dishes too. Putting in your dishes without any sort of order will only result to chaos cleaning which might not turn out clean dishes. Hand-wash the bigger dishes first. Place the smaller dishes at the center and the bigger dishes at the back to avoid blocking the smaller dishes from being reached. This way the cleaning process will go a lot smoother and your dishes will be effectively cleaned.

 

  1. Avoid putting wooden dishes.

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For your wooden utensils to have a longer life, it is better that you avoid having them in the dishwasher as the heat will cause them to have cracks. Wash these by hand and air dry them. It is important that they remain water-free and dry for them to last longer.

  1. Hand-wash your cutlery.

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Knives and forks may be the cause of damage to your sensitive plates. Keep them off of your dishwasher and have them cleaned manually. The dishwashing liquid can also make your steel items appear faded. Dry the cutlery well before storing it because you definitely don’t want a case of rusted knives and forks.

  1. Use a rinse agent.

It is highly recommended that you use a rinse agent together with dishwashing liquid soap just to ensure that you leave no soapy spots on the dishes afterward. Soapy spots are definitely not a food end result and your dishes will not really be clean.

  1. Check the water temperature.

Not only do you want your dishes clean but you want them sanitized. Ensure that you have the correct water temperature. Check the settings on the water heater. Do not put very high or low temperatures. Consider the utensils material, whether its ceramic, glass, plastics or melamine because each of them reacts differently to water of different temperatures.

With the above ideas, it may seem as if using the dishwasher is rocket science but on the contrary, it is the best way to clean your dishes as it saves water and a lot of time and energy. Get to know how it works before taking it home and have it checked once in a while to make sure it is still effective. If you do not have any idea on how to clean it, you could always go to the store and get some ideas on how to go about it.