6 Design Suggestions for Happy Pets

Being around nonthreatening animals, domesticated or otherwise, calms humans. The reason for this seems buried in our prehistory: Back then when we had been around other animals and all was calm, that meant predators were not lurking nearby, about to vie. Plus, the weather was likely fine.

When we’re less stressed we now have more mental energy at our disposal to do whatever we’ve set out to accomplish, whether that is having a good time hanging out with household members, writing a book or planning dinners for the next week. But there’s a catch: Having animals in our home is excellent for us psychologically only if these animals are happy and healthy. They add to the strain in our lives if they’re not. (A moping dog or a out-of-sorts cat does not improve anyone’s day.)

The good thing is that layout can make animals happier, just as it can people. You can produce a home where your pets feel as great as you do. It is hard to read the heads of pets, but when you learn about them as they spend time in your home, you’ll discover ways you may create your special animal buddy feel especially happy. Here are only a few ways to keep pets in great spirits.

Photo by user Downijd, from 50 Dog Photos Worth a Wag

Famous Luxury Homes

1. Some privacy, please! Make sure that your pet has privacy. Cats feel comfortable in their litter boxes whenever they’re at a room all their own.

Dogs may need a place in your home where they can get away from demanding kids or loud music, too. A covered kennel, doghouse or bed at a laundry area might be just the thing.

Betty’s Room, LLC

2. Create sheltered spaces for pets to lounge in. Pets want places where they can decompress, just as you do. Those areas do not always have to be completely away from humans, however. Our pets are societal but great at self-preservation, just like we are.

Many animals, including humans, feel protected when danger can not creep upon them. While in the present world that is not as likely as tens of thousands of years ago, we’re still hardwired to believe that way.

So providing a safe spot where a pet can definitely let down their guard is vital. This feline feels at peace because the chair has a high back and can be at a corner, assuring the cat that nothing is going to creep up. Provide that security and you’ll have a serene, happy pet.

Diskin Designs

3. Construct in a opinion. Pets will need to survey their land. Being able to look out the window while relaxing, as cats and dogs can perform with this cushioned shelf, is desirable.

In case you don’t have windows that are high, consider putting a safe pet gate in an opened door that leads outside.

Hugh Jefferson Randolph Architects

4. Let in scents and sounds. Animals rely on smells and sounds more than humans do. To let them feel safe, having open windows enables them to hear and smell what is lurking in their environment.

5. For exercising include places. Cats like climbing on cat trees, shelves, furniture, and anything that enables movement and elevates them off the floor. Small dogs like being able to run down long hallways without slipping and slipping, so add carpeting when possible.

6. Support aging pets. As pets get older, their needs vary, just as humans’ do. Recognizing those changes will prolong the positive relationship you’ve got with your pet.

Dogs’ joints, such as ours, stiffen up when they become older. Senior dogs like eating from a bowl put on a stand or brief bench that raises the bowl large enough above the floor so they can eat at a standard standing posture — no need to reduce the front part of the body or head too much.

Your turn What is your pet’s favorite place in your property?

More:
So You Wish to Get a Cat
So You Are Considering Getting a Dog

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Strange but True Parallels Between Old Japanese Style and Western

If you have wabi-sabi inclinations, finding this Japanese art of finding beauty in imperfection and impermanence feels like coming home. Most of us have been feeling the little-known philosophy’s likeness, whether we’ve known it or not, for the majority of our lives. That is because Western style changed toward a comparable wabi-sabi simplicity centuries past.

No-frills style has permeated all the significant Western design movements that still influence contemporary trends. The plain, efficient houses built by the utopian Shakers (the antithesis of the luxurious Georgian homes that were constructed since the usa got wealthier) along with the easy, unsentimental Arts and Crafts designs of William Morris and Gustav Stickley (a response to Victorian repression and the Industrial Revolution’s isolation), keep the wabi-sabi markers. As do Frank Lloyd Wright’s unadorned, compact Prairie houses — which he called”wallpapers for the life within their walls”– along with the Slow Design movement of now that urges designers to satisfy real needs over trend.

In another couple of weeks, I’ll Have a Look at Western design’s wabi-sabi-like historical path. Here I’ll analyze how a simpler fashion emerged in the mid- to late 18th century and the early 1900s, when industrialization was forcing paradigm changes that heavily influenced design.

VERMONT WOODS STUDIOS

In the mid- to late 18th century, the Shaker aesthetic — showing that an ascetic pursuit of simplicity and efficiency that was free of decoration and embellishment — took hold. Westerners were attracted to the style, which was just a look; it was actually prescribed at the Shaker holy orders. Beadings, moldings and cornices that are only for elaborate might not be created by believers, goes the edict.

Hayneedle

Chester Console Table – $97.98

When Japanese architect Tadao Ando first seen the USA in the 1970s, he wrote home about Shaker furniture. He admired its extreme simplicity and reserve, which he said had a controlling and ordering influence on the surroundings (high praise from a man who designs the surroundings). “Technically, the furniture was made without a waste of any kind,” he wrote. “At the excellent diversity of modern times, to experience objects representing an extreme simplification of life and form was very refreshing.”

historicstyle.com

William Morris Compton Wallpaper

In 1889 housekeeping expert Emma Hewitt called surplus, cluttered Victorian decor”the American disorder” and urged homemakers to”have beauty only in which it’s needed and appropriate.” As the telegraph, railroads and steam electricity accelerated stuffy and everything, brocaded Victorian parlors signaled riches and standing, William Morris began his campaign for a return to handmade quality and the passing of inessential decoration. This ideal is at the origin of wabi-sabi, too.

Morris — a socialist whose naturally dyed, hand-printed backgrounds (one is shown here) were cherished by the robber barons — railed publicly and prolifically against what he called the”swinish luxury of the wealthy,” decorative surplus (“gaudy gilt furniture writhing under a sense of its horror and ugliness,” he explained ) and also the poverty of people who lacked imagination. “Have nothing in your home you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful,” he said — now one of the most often-repeated lines at home decorating.

Gardner Architects LLC

Morris despised fussy, cluttered Victorian decor, and he was a vocal critic of houses being constructed during the era. “It is common today to hear people say of such and such a piece of nation or suburb:’Ah! It was so beautiful a season or so ago, but it’s been quite spoilt by the construction,”’ he wrote. “Forty decades ago the construction could have been looked on as a vast improvement; today we have grown conscious of the hideousness we are generating, and we proceed on producing it.”

Kim Hojnacki Photography

Morris urged his pupils and disciples to continuously seek beauty in life’s mundane details. “For when a man cannot find the noblest motives for his artwork in such simple daily things as a woman drawing water from the well or a man cooperating with his scythe, he won’t find them anywhere at all,” he said. “What you really do love are your men and women, your flowers and areas, your hills and mountains, and all these are what your artwork should represent to you.”

Saying that a well-shaped bread loaf and a beautifully set table were works of art as good as the day’s revered masterpieces, Morris’ successor as the Arts and Crafts pioneer, W.R. Lethaby, claimed that modern society was”overly concerned with notions of genius and fantastic performers to appreciate common things of life designed and executed by common people.”

His and others’ appreciation for the beauty in everyday life resides now. I believe this simple, beautiful bowl of blueberries could make Lethaby and wabi-sabi followers grin.

Stickley Furniture

As the top spokesman for the American Craftsman movement, which evolved from England’s Arts and Crafts movement, Gustav Stickley attracted easy, creatively made furniture to the American masses at the end of the 19th century.

Stickley employed”only those forms and substances which cause simplicity, individuality, and dignity of impact,” he said. He and his family lived in a simple log cabin, of which he wrote:”First, there is the bare beauty of the logs themselves with their long lines and firm curves. Then there is the open allure felt of these structural features which aren’t concealed under plaster and decoration, but are clearly revealed, a charm felt in Western architecture.”

Because This picture demonstrates, Stickley’s easy, classic furniture remains a staple in homes Across the World.

Frank Lloyd Wright Trust

Victorian clutter and crafts and crafts simplicity managed to reside side by side for several decades, before Frank Lloyd Wright wedged his wabi-sabi-like notions about organic architecture deep into the American mind in the early 20th century.

Rooms should be”wallpapers for the life within their walls,” said Wright in describing the compact fashion, with a noticeable absence of decoration and decoration, of his Prairie houses. Just to be certain nobody missed this stage (people rarely did), he added emphatically,”And no junk!”

More: 4 Obstacles to Decluttering — and How to Beat Them

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Herb Garden Essentials: Boost Your Own Oregano and Marjoram

If you love to cook, consider growing oregano and its sibling, sweet marjoram. They are pretty foolproof, perfect for beginner anglers. They are also a great addition to any number of dishes, and you can easily freeze or dry them.

The real issue is deciding which type to grow. Common oregano (Origanum vulgare) can be easily available, but it takes a culinary backseat to Greek and Italian oregano, known for their spicy flavor, and sweet marjoram, using a milder flavor that’s great for seasoning vegetables and vinaigrettes.

More summer crops

Missouri Botanical Garden

Oregano varieties are generally the taller and faster growing of both, reaching up to two feet. Sweet marjoram is a little bigger and slower to reach its complete 1-foot height. Both are perennials in warm weather climates but are often grown as annuals. It is ideal to begin from seedlings. You will want to smell and taste the leaves to be sure you’re getting a variety you desire.

You will also find other oregano varieties available that make colorful culinary and ornamental additions to a herb garden. The requirements will be the same. Once you’ve got your staple varieties in good shape, it can be time for you to experiment.

Light requirement: Full sun; might need some afternoon shade in the hottest summer climates
Water necessity: Little to your
Prime growing season: late spring through fall
When to plant: Spring into summer
Favorites: Greek Steak (Origanum vulgare hirtum, O. heracleoticum), Italian Steak (O. x majoricum), sweet marjoram (O. majorana)

Missouri Botanical Garden

Planting and care: Choose a place in sunlight once all the danger of frost has passed and the soil temperature is fairly warm. The plants are not fussy about soil types but do require decent drainage. Amend the soil before planting, then space seedlings about 12 inches apart for sweet marjoram and 12 to 18 inches apart for oregano. You might also grow sweet and sweet marjoram in pots at least 6 inches broad.

To prevent the plants from becoming woody, cut them back to 4 to 6 inches about a month after planting, then again in midsummer and early fall if climbing them as perennials. Cut back completely or split every few years to replenish the plants and fertilize lightly once per year at the spring.

Pests and diseases generally don’t bother oregano, even though there are occasional problems with rots, spider mites and aphids. Sweet marjoram is similarly trouble free, though whiteflies and rust can sometimes cause problems.

Habitat Design

Harvest: Begin harvesting when crops reach 6 to 8 inches tall. Cut fresh leaves as the flower buds form to the best flavor. You might observe a growth spurt right before flowering.

Freeze or dry the leaves for more storage; additionally harvest before the plants bloom. For the best results select the leaves when they’re dry.

More essential herbs: How to Grow Basil

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Fantastic Native Plant: Angelita Daisy

The sunny flowers of angelita daisy (Tetraneuris acaulis)will brighten almost any landscape, but if you look past the pretty flowers of this Southwestern native, you will find that it packs a few surprises. Angelita daisies flourish in the hot temperatures of summer and manage the cold of USDA climate zone 5 as easily. If you need a colorful perennial along a pathway, by a pool or in a container, then angelita daisy can fill that desire. And as if which weren’t enough, this tough little perennial flowers year-round in zones 8 and over, making it a fantastic addition to every garden.

Noelle Johnson Landscape Consulting

Botanical name:Tetraneuris acaulis (previously Hymenoxys acaulis)
Common name: Angelita daisy
Origin: Native to the American Southwest
USDA zones: 5 to 9 (find your zone)
Water necessity: Low
moderate requirement: Total sun
Mature size: 1 foot tall and broad
Tolerances: Drought tolerant but does best with weekly watering
Seasonal attention: Yellow daisy-like flowers appear throughout the year in zones 8 and over. In zones 5 to 7, it is going to go dormant in winter months.
When to plant: Plant from container plants in spring or autumn.

Noelle Johnson Landscape Consulting

Distinguishing attributes. Yellow 1-inch daisies are borne over dark green, grass-like foliage, forming a tidy and compact perennial. This tough little plant is a workhorse in the backyard. Blooms appear throughout the year in low desert areas, with most flowers emerging in spring. In higher elevations angelita daisies will stop flowering in winter, but they will restart blooming once the weather warms in spring.

Noelle Johnson Landscape Consulting

The best way to use it. Angelita daisies are extremely versatile in the landscape and look best when planted together in masses of five or three. Dress up a lonely boulder by planting three angelita daisies toward the side, or plant collections along a winding pathway.

Because yellow-flowering plants help the other colours in your landscape pop, angelita daisy looks great paired with succulents like agave and purple prickly pear (Opuntia violaceae var santa-rita,zones 8 to 11). Other choices include planting it with firecracker penstemon (Penstemon eatoni,zones 5 to 9)or in front of Baja fairy duster (Calliandra californica,zones 9 to 11).

Need a yellow-flowering perennial for your container garden? Angelita daisies do good in pots and are equally at home by a swimming pool.

Noelle Johnson Landscape Consulting

Planting notes. Angelita daisies are very low maintenance and have a few basic requirements to help them look their best: well-drained soil, full sun and extra water. Don’t be concerned about fertilizer; they do best without it.

This Southwest native looks best when the flowers are sheared back every month or two, which raises the amount of new flowers.

Angelita daisies can manage places with full, reflected sunlight. Hardy to -20 degrees Fahrenheit, they will make themselves at home in almost any landscape and include attractiveness throughout the year with very little fuss.

More guides to yellow flowers

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5 Modern Home Exteriors Tell a Texture Story

Every now and then I like to zoom in on homes and the materials they are made from. This ideabook investigates the textures that may be expressed through concrete, wood, stone, metal and even rammed earth.

The examples that follow move from the macro to the micro, from the distant view into the close-up, showing the qualities that might not be apparent at first glance. Check them out to see if these textures may work for your project, be it the walls of your home, a freestanding wall in your lawn or maybe a partition inside.

Kariouk Associates

1. House in Chelsea, Quebec

The exterior of this house in Quebec is made from industrial concrete blocks. But instead of a running bond or some other stacked pattern, Kariouk Associates composed the blocks into a pinwheel pattern. It makes the boxy exterior appear woven.

Kariouk Associates

Up close the variation from the surface — tough, not smooth — comes. This offers the exterior a few interesting shadow patterns once the sun reaches the right angles. It also demonstrates that feel may come about through the exploitation of the cheapest, most mundane materials.

Cornerstone Architects

This Texas home, made by Cornerstone Architects, consists primarily of two materials: limestone and concrete. Both seem fairly flat and monolithic, though the latter does have a couple horizontal openings occurring on the left side above and beneath a opening in the wall socket.

Cornerstone Architects

This gap, angled back on one side (it is really angled back on both sides, framing a view of the trees), accentuates the plasticity of the poured-in-place concrete. Given that wet concrete is poured into a mould so it can heal, dry and take a form, the material demonstrates the residue of its own formwork. Here flat wood planks have been used, as the “ghost” of these is visible.

Cornerstone Architects

Concrete can be used in this home for the chimney and freestanding walls (detached from the home’s exterior walls). Thus the limestone makes up the walls enclosing your home.

This is an aesthetic option, but it will add to the cost. Obviously, it also gives the walls a finer scale and a softer color than the concrete.

Cornerstone Architects

The limestone is also used inside, accentuating the monolithic nature of the walls (insulating material has most probably been placed between the inside and outside faces, although the wall appears strong through and through).

At this space a few things are evident: The mortar suits the limestone so well, it disappears at a space, and the feel of the stone actually exhibits how it had been created; one can see via the curved outlines how big discs cut through the stone at the quarry.

Imbue Design

2. Buddhist’s Home in Utah

One of the most unique aspects of this Buddhist’s home in Utah is the way the walls appear to grow up from the ground. The home appears to be produced from the rock upon which it sits. This occurs through construction with gabion walls — big stones are stored in wire baskets.

Imbue Design

The feel of gabion walls comes in the colour and size of the stones and the kind of basket — here. While normally used for retaining walls and highway embankments, gabion walls are somewhat well known in buildings.

But provided fire codes, they can not be the principal arrangement (lest the baskets fail and the stones fall), and the stones don’t protect or chalk almost well enough to be used for a key wall.

Within this house they are on the surface of a strong wall that is more typical on the interior. But nothing else out there resembles a gabion, if that is the look you are going for.

The building zone, ltd..

3. Model Home at Arizona

This construction is a sales centre that serves as a model home for a distinctive modern desert improvement in Sedona, Arizona. The dark metal stands out from the desert context, but the rammed earth origins the home in its own place, echoing the bluff outside.

The building zone, ltd..

The combination of stained concrete flooring, wood ceilings and rammed-earth walls generates a feeling of being suspended in the place.

Rammed earth is among the oldest construction approaches; it dropped out of use with modernization but is finding new life as buildings attempt to become sustainable. Obviously, the desert is perfect for the substance, provided its thermal mass and capacity to radiate heat during the cool night after absorbing it daily.

What I like about this particular wall of rammed earth is the method by which the formwork anchors continue to be from the wall, projecting from it like hooks. These reveal the horizontal layers where the wall has been constructed, compacting one layer, then moving the forms to another level etc.

Yamamar layout

In most ways rammed earth and concrete are similar; they approach a similar hardness, however, one is made by compaction while the other is treated. However both are built up from the bottom up (excluding sprayed-on concrete) and therefore exhibit a layering that can be pronounced to lesser or greater degrees. This garage in Portola Valley, California, actually accentuates the flat layering.

Yamamar layout

Up close we can see the banding occurs from stripes of concrete bumped out of the wall. This is the end result of spacing the formwork apart ever so slightly, so the concrete may fill the gap (an outer cover into the shape will keep it from spilling out). It’s an imperfect method; hence a few segments drop off in the procedure.

Yamamar layout

On a negative note, the weapon that parallels the garage appears to be inspired by the concrete (or vice versa) with its less-than-true horizontal pieces.

Vladimir Radutny Architects

4. Loft in Chicago

For the past two examples, we move indoors. To get a loft in Chicago, Studio IDE made a few wood partitions with a wavy pattern that comes in the articulation of wood slats.

Vladimir Radutny Architects

The building of the alternating wood pine strips is more understandable up close, but it is still complicated enough that it is hard to fully grasp what’s happening. A door or wall similar to this would be expensive custom created, but a DIY woodworker would definitely have a burst tackling a similar project.

Bates Masi Architects LLC

5. Home in New York State

The modern-day hearth within this New York country home, made by Bates Masi Architects, is a standout, even as its vertical members replicate the walls and ceiling.

Instead of wood, the enclosure is made from bronze strips that were digitally trimmed and then patinated onsite.

Bates Masi Architects LLC

The strips are actually L-shaped, with the brief leg overlapping the adjacent strip — a shingle of sorts. This literally gives the enclosure some a feel that elevates the hearth to some bit of art.

More:
Texture Talk

Beautiful Construction Materials

16 Architectural Details Which Sing

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11 Distinctive Details for Upscale-Looking Upholstery

I looking at upholstery particulars. I make and purchase seats, sofas and headboards frequently and have studied various tucks, seams and welts for years. Particular details really do specify a appearance of a chair, much like a necklace or scarf may change the vibe of an outfit.

Learn upholstery lingo and consider some new details for your next upholstery job. Here are some of my favorites and the attitudes they communicate.

J. Hirsch Interior Design, LLC

Among my favorite choices for a chair is that a dressmaker’s cut, occasionally referred to as a drop skirt. It creates a casual but tailored vibe. This detail works great with cotton and linen. Notice the contrasting band at the underside edge. Pretty!

Annette Tatum

An English arm using a T-seat cushion is just another one of my favorite upholstery particulars. This appearance is elegant yet also casual. The fit is precise and shows a pattern nicely.

Comfort Works Custom Slipcovers

A pleated slipcover is a fantastic alternative for chairs and sofas. Slipcovers are practical and also a fantastic choice for homes with kids or pets, but occasionally they may look cluttered and ill fitting. The pleat provides just a subtle detail so the slipcover looks as though it fits properly.

Tobi Fairley Interior Design

A box cushion is a nice choice for bench or banquette seating. A box cushion is made with a foam core for a nice squared-off shape. Sometimes construction consists of a foam core using a downward wrap. The advantages here are finished with a little self-welt.

Cecilie Starin Design Inc..

This gorgeous chair has a lot going on. The details are extremely subtle but visually effective. The chair has a contrasting face on the chair cushion. Moreover, the chair and back have a dual welt for extra elegance. Gorgeous!

Sarah St. Amand Interior Design, Inc..

Contrasting fabrics are a excellent detail for seats. Try out a contrasting fabric on the inner back of a chair, just like with this handsome armchair. Create interest with materials that relate to one another in colour or pattern.

Paula Grace Designs, Inc..

Try out placing stripes rather than vertically. This makes a space feel a bit more updated and modern. Notice that the welt with this chair was cut on the bias, which means the stripe was placed with a soft slant.

Abbe Fenimore Studio Ten 25

Nailheads pump up the detail on the back of your sofa. If you have a sofa set away from the walls in an area, look at dressing up the back. The simple nailhead detail here adds a modern touch to the squared-off lines.

Jamie Herzlinger

Diamond tufting is a detail to your chair, sofa or headboard that creates extra cushion on tight-back upholstery. A tight spine does not have as much “cush” as a loose back, so the diamond tufting constitutes that. It tends to feel modern in a strong and more conventional in a pattern.

Cecilie Starin Design Inc..

A tufted, rolled arm is unmistakably traditional. This is occasionally referred to as a chesterfield fashion; the tufting this is daring and overscaled.

Bauhaus Custom Homes

Channel tufting is a fun detail that may add vintage appeal or modern flair to any type of chairs. Based on what it is paired with, this detail may evoke ’20s a midcentury modern vibe. It feels nice and pleasant, too, and really is a fantastic choice for men and women that like symmetry.

More: 3 Extreme Chair Makeovers

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8 Low-Cost Ways to Personalize a Front Entrance

It’s always tricky to prioritize decorating dollars, and I tend to funnel most of mine into interior enhancements: furniture, fabric, tchotchkes. But lately I have been thinking that the outside of the house — and especially my front entry — deserves its share of this love. The entry might be the very first impression of a home, and my entry is best called mousy.

Fortunately, jazzing up front entrance doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Try out these eight strategies to make a showstopper entryway without blowing your budget. Got another trick to add? We’d like to hear the facts in the Comments!

S / Wiley Interior Photography

1. Create a miniature room. Here a bench with cheery outdoor pillows, a hanging paper lantern along with a framed chalkboard combine to turn a simple entrance into a sitting space all its own — all without breaking the bank. Mix and match furniture to fit your home’s architecture and style.

Wind and Willow Home

2. Spell out a welcome. A stencil, a can of spray paint and presto! An plain concrete stoop becomes a hospitable howdy. If you can not or do not want to paint right on the surface, try stenciling a plain cotton or sisal doormat instead.

Sterling Publishing

3. Invest in showstopping hardware. Swap out dull doorknobs and knockers for immediate pizzazz on the cheap. It’s possible to search flea markets and architectural salvage stores for one-of-a-kind classic models, but even home centres take eye-catching styles these days. Decide on a knocker that offers a glimpse into your personality and interior design, while it’s an equestrian motif for horse fans or a nautical theme for a house on the coast.

Glenna Partridge Garden Design

4. Pile up plantings. Plants are among the simplest and most affordable ways to give your entrance a polished appearance, and they are able to boost any effect you’re trying for. Mass tumbles of old-fashioned blooms in tin or tole bathtubs for a cabin; stick with variegated greens and glossy containers in a contemporary setting. For a traditional house, make a symmetrical category of palms, ficus or roses in ceramic or terra-cotta planters.

Megan Buchanan

5. Lighting the way. Why settle for a dull outdoor lighting fixture once it is possible to hang a bit of eye candy? Outdoor chandeliers are superbly unexpected. If you want to use it for lighting, start looking for a model that’s designed for outdoor use, but in the event that you simply want the cosmetic effect, you are able to mount an indoor fixture without wiring it.

Garden Studio

6. Paint the door a unforeseen shade. It sounds obvious, and yet so many of us choose the easy way out and go with brown, black or white. If the task of choosing a bolder color throws you for a loop, try this trick: Snap a photograph of your property, then take it into the paint store so that you can see how different colors work with your exterior.

Select a color that contrasts strongly with the principal paint color: bright crimson paired with pale grey siding, turquoise from rusty red brick, plum on khaki stucco. Lipstick red in a field of white is a classic, but branch out and try other colors — perhaps kelly Chinese or green yellow.

Get advice on what color to paint your front door

Latin Accents, Inc..

7. Decorate the door surround. Set off front door and give it more existence by adding a decorative framework. If the structure will accommodate such a remedy, line it with ornamental tiles or a mosaic. Otherwise, you can attain a similar effect with paint.

Jeffrey Gordon Smith Landscape Architecture

8. Have fun with house numbers. Forget hardware-store amounts on the mailbox. Make yours soda: fun colors, beautiful fonts, creative placement. Just be certain you don’t sacrifice clear visibility and readability for the interest of interest.

See more on house numbers
Browse house numbers in the Products section

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Dining Place Makeover: Paint and Tea-Tinted Fabric Make Old Chairs New

When my husband and I bought our Dallas ranch house, we also became the owners of a dining set the prior owners had left behind. It was not our personality, but it was comfy, and as my father says, “Love the one you’re with.” After residing with the hand-me-down dining set for three decades, I was prepared for a budget-friendly update. Here is the way I took my dining seats from blah to bold one weekend.

Sarah Greenman

Time: 4 hours and drying period
Skill level: Moderate
Price: $65, even if you presently have a basic gun and screwdriver

Our dining room walls are painted a charcoal gray called Cracked Pepper from Behr, and we all understood reddish could pop from the dark walls.

Sarah Greenman

BEFORE: This is the first blue brocade upholstery.

Sarah Greenman

Tools and materials required:
Staple gun
3/8-inch staplesScrewdriver or drill
Spray can of B-I-N Shellac-Base Primer (I used two cans for four seats)
Spray paint in your preferred color. (I used two cans of glossy Apple Red from Rust-Oleum to refinish four seats)Spray can of polyurethane clear gloss topcoatSeat cushion materials:Box of tea to stain upholstery fabric (I used 10 bags of Earl Grey)
about 1/2 lawn fabric of your choice each cushion, depending on seat dimensions
Plastic sink, sink or soaking bathtub

Sarah Greenman

Repainting the Chair Frame

1.
Using your own screwdriver or drill, remove the screws from your chair cushions and place them apart.

Sarah Greenman

2. Take the chair frames out for painting. Cover the work area with an old sheet or paper; I utilized a large canvas drop cloth in my own backyard. Put on gloves and protective goggles. Spray each chair evenly with primer and permit them to dry thoroughly. This primer spray dries fast; the seats should be all set for the next step within 20 minutes.

Sarah Greenman

3. Spray paint the seats. Follow the can’s instructions and spray evenly and from the right distance for the best outcomes. Permit the color coat to dry thoroughly (about an hour).

Sarah Greenman

I placed cardboard beneath the seats because I was painting on a soft grass surface.

Sarah Greenman

4. I love the appearance of high-gloss painted furniture, so I finished the task with a polyurethane topcoat. This sealed the timber and left a clean durable finish that allows me to easily wipe down the seats after mealtimes.

5. Permit the seats to dry thoroughly in the open air before bringing them indoors. I let mine dry immediately, but four to five hours should be sufficient time.

Sarah Greenman

Staining and Re-covering that the Seat Cushions

I like the look of script, so I chose this typographic cloth from Ikea. I coated five cushions using less than 3 yards of cloth. The cloth was too white for my own dining area, so I shifted the shade with a simple tea stain.

Sarah Greenman

1. Staining a bright white cloth with tea is a terrific way to give your upholstery a classic appearance. While the seats are drying, fill a bucket with warm water and steep 10 or more tea bags. Plunge the cloth into the tea and let it soak for 2 hours or longer. Stir it sometimes. The longer you let it steep, the darker the stain is going to be.

Sarah Greenman

2. Once the cloth has the desired pigmentation, then wring out the water and hang the cloth to dry or toss it in the dryer on medium until it’s thoroughly dry.

Sarah Greenman

3. Place the pillow on the cloth and cut it with scissors, leaving spacearound the edges to totally cover your cushions, such as the sides and a few inches of overlap underneath. I left 5 to 6 inches of extra fabric around the edges of the cushion.

Sarah Greenman

4. Fold the edges of the cloth, tucking under the rough edges. This will help keep your cloth from fraying and coming loose with time.

Hint: If your fabric has a design with a clear top and bottom, such as this script, be certain the layout is lined up properly. In this case, I placed the script to be readable when you’re confronting the chair.

Sarah Greenman

5. Using a staple gun, secure the border of the cloth to the bottom of the chair. I had the most success when I began with front lip of the chair. When the front is secure, pull the cloth taut across the top of the chair and secure the rear lip of the pillow, leaving the sides and corners free.

When managing the corners, I just pintucked the cloth and used a few extra staples to secure the overlapped areas. Staple the surfaces of the pillow smooth and last the cloth with your hand as you complete the job. Be sure the top of the pillow is smooth.

Sarah Greenman

6. Once the chair frames are completely dry, reattach the newly covered cushions using a drill or screwdriver.

Before Photo

Sarah Greenman

Here’s a look at the seats before and after.

Sarah Greenman

My refreshed dining place now appears prepared to host a tea party. Treating the white upholstery using a tea stain brought it more in accord with the off-white area rug and pendant lighting above the table.

Your turn: Share your dining chair makeover below!

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10 Great Ways to Use Kitchen Corners

If space around your house is feeling tight, take a second look in your corners. If or not a corner is vacant or there is a pile of stuff you’ve been meaning to clean it up, it might be ripe for a small redo.

There are ways to make the most of a corner in every room of the home. I’ll start with the kitchen now. Whether you’re planning a remodel or just searching for a tiny intervention, here are some smart tips for corners you may not have considered.

Lake Country Builders

Insert a sink. A window over the kitchen sink is a popular style move and helps the drudgery of doing dishes. Get twice as much view by planning a corner sink that allows you enjoy the sights out either side of your dwelling.

Not sure? Take a Look at This ideabook: Can Be a Kitchen Corner Sink Right for You?

Best & Company

Make an Granite kitchen using a banquette. A small kitchen table and corner banquette maximize the chairs possible in a tight kitchen.

Allen Construction

Install a range. This is not a move for everybody, as it can take up additional space. What is great about it is the way it can work inside the work triangle, that it enlivens a corner and that it opens up the chance to display a special high backsplash.

Because this appearance grows more popular in the U.S., more corner-ready hood vents and ranges are making their way over from different countries, where it is already an established appearance.

Dalia Kitchen Design

Talk with your kitchen designer, builder and cupboard designers about placing a corner range. Unless you’re incredibly talented with DIY jobs, a corner range can cause some headaches. Some issues you’ll need to consider:

• Venting and how the port hood will fit in the corner
• Extra fillers next to the cabinets — doors and drawers will need to clean the oven when open.
• Look closely at handles whenever you’re opting for a range for a corner and realize that the oven’s manage may stick out beyond your cabinet fronts.
• Make sure that you have appropriate clearance to the toaster door when it is open — you can’t have it bonking in an island when it is only partly open. Also, think about attempting to hoist a hefty dish from it and see whether you have sufficient space to do this in front of the open doorway, or if you’re able to manage grabbing things from the sides.
• The corner range design works best with counters on either side.

Julie Williams Design

In this open-space program, everything is oriented toward the corner specifically, the view in the pub. Putting the range and vent hood in this corner creates a focal point where the backsplash extends all of the way up to the ceiling.

Renewal Design-Build

Have a cabinet and a window match. This is an example of smart kitchen planning; the glass-front cabinets nestle to the narrow area between the window and the adjacent wall. Make sure that you are leaving enough clearance to the cabinet door to open at least 90 degrees; factor in protruding knobs, moldings and windowsills.

The Closet Works, Inc..

Use a tall lazy Susan in the pantry. Long a favourite way to address deep corners, this is a fantastic storage solution for those of you using a pantry.

Glenvale Kitchens

Discover the brand new corner drawers. Talking of lazy Susans, a modern replacement is a profound, clever drawer that goes around the bend.

Screen special wares. A tower similar to this one can show off special serving pieces, cookbooks and plants.

Mary Prince Photography

Create family central with a miniature office. This kitchen workspace makes the most of a small corner, with upper and lower cabinets for storage and a computer for running the family. Note the thoughtful undercabinet lighting.

A set such as this makes for a great area to do homework, look up recipes, pay bills and keep track of the family program.

Sarah Barnard Design

Here is an example of a more stripped-down kitchen workplace, with just enough space to utilize and store a laptop or a iPad.

Check out more kitchen desk setups with style

Jeneration Interiors

Make an extra seating nook. Many people have a tendency to shove closets in every available space in kitchen. I have found I will pare down my belongings to fit in a small number of cabinets, and I’ll expand them to fill up a large number. If you have a look at what you really need and edit, you might free up room for a comfy corner seat.

Use shelves. This spacious appearance does not demand any special custom made corner pieces and makes a small kitchen seem larger than it truly is. The sole drawback is dust — I recommend using pieces you use and clean all of the time, and giving the shelves a dusting once weekly. This sounds like a pain till you find the magic of a duster with an extender, which will help you get the pesky dusting performed in a under a minute without a step stool.

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Fantasy Room Makeover Progress Report

It is a fantastic time to check in on the house of our Dream Living Room Sweepstakes winner. A couple of months ago, Mary Pucul of Vandling, Pennsylvania, won $20,000 of style services and $20,000 of furniture from Design Within Reach. (Check out our very first setup, where you will meet with the winner, husband Carl and designer Ani Semerjian, plus have a furniture shopping excursion together and take a look at the plans.)

The living room is well on its way to being a dream come true, but it’s an active construction zone. “It is a little difficult not having access to the place where we invest most of our time, and all the stuff that was in that room is spread out throughout the remainder of the home,” Pucul states. “But it’s all worth it, due to being here each day you can see things continuously shifting.”

Here is a peek at the way the room is coming along.

The dark brown cut the beams, moldings and stairs is painted in Benjamin Moore’s French Press AF-170. The light walls are Benjamin Moore’s Cosmopolitan CSP-100.

Semerjian Interiors

Semerjian’s original plan for the room indicates some of the furniture choices from Design Within Reach. (Read more about the purchasing and selection process here.) Besides the design furniture and services, the remodel includes tiling, a new ceiling, recessed lighting, painting, removing a sink inside the room (previously a kitchen) and shutting up the pipes.

Living in a construction zone isn’t fun, however, the couple has found ways to accommodate. Pucul is great at turning negatives into positives. “My husband went to the library, where you can purchase a bag of used books for $5, and he’s now on his next luggage,” she states. “We’ve been reading a lot. The radio, CD player and DVD player have been disconnected for the last couple of months, so we’ve had more discussions. I have tried cleaning the rest of the home, however, also the sawdust and plaster dust finds its way upstairs virtually every day, so I have given cleaning up until the work is completed — that’s a fantastic thing.”

At one stage during construction, Carl found a way to enjoy his favorite TV-watching place, that has a new wall-mounted plasma TV and a comfy lawn chair that could stand up to drywall dust. “Our only other TV is in the bedroom, so some nights we are in bed by 8 or 9 o’clock,” Pucul states.

Demolition comprised removing the drop ceiling and the rug. This brought back memories for Pucul, who grew up in this home. “After taking out the rug, we were left with all the linoleum from the time when that room was our family,” she states.

“Back in 1964 my mother won an electrical stove and informed my father the new stove was moving in the living room on the second floor,” she recalls, “so that was our kitchen got moved upstairs and the kitchen became the family room. Seeing that linoleum brought back a great deal of great memories … but I have to say, the hardwood floor looks a ton better.”

Semerjian’s programs include a white painted tongue and groove ceiling and recessed lighting. “The initial ceiling was half acoustic tile, and another half has been wood-grained paneling that looked very obsolete,” she states. “Instead of removing it, I chose to add it to another part of the ceiling, removing the acoustic tile.”

“Since the home is in the nation and the furniture is so contemporary, the tongue and groove ceiling introduced a nation element to the space. It will help tie the room together,” Semerjian states. “painting the paneling white upgraded the space and added dimension and interest to the ceiling.”

Ceiling paint: White Dove OC-17, Benjamin Moore

“I really like the appearance of dark molding and trim,” Semerjian continues. “I picked the dark paint help tie the ceiling and the flooring together, because we decided to opt for a gorgeous dark walnut floor.”

“I was not sure about the colour scheme initially but trusted Ani’s judgment,” Pucul states, “and she’s been put on!”

The flooring is an engineered timber by Mohawk. It is the Queenstown (a 5-inch-wide plank) in Hickory Antique. As this space is a cellar, Semerjian chose engineered flooring for their stability and resistance to moisture. “We chose to proceed with the dark floor because it’s much more wealthy and elegant, and I really like the appearance of wide plank flooring.”

The firebox was arranged prior to Semerjian came onboard, so she is working on a design for a surround to deliver it in the new scheme of the room.

Semerjian took good advantage of the space under the stairs to make open shelves for networking gear.

The owners like seeing progress almost daily. “We’ve come a long way,” Pucul states.

Our next article will be the big reveal. I can not wait to see this dream living room!

More: Watch the first installation of this makeover

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