As mentioned in a previous blog post, buying a bed is a large and significant purchase. The core tips discussed for choosing a bed will be remain the same and will do so for the foreseeable future.
However, unless you are lucky enough to live in a home with a spacious bedroom, the bed itself will take up a significant portion of the room. During the day this space is commonly unused. Wouldn’t it be great to transform bedrooms so they are truly multi-functional?
After attending a recent exhibition in the UK, we were presented with an innovative space saving bed which allows a bed to glide into the ceiling at the touch of a button. This opens up a number of functional uses for the room. At night it can remain a place to sleep but during the day it could be:
• A play area for your children
• A home gym
• An office
• A home cinema!
It’s certainly a cost effective solution compared to building extensions to your home or even moving home if you think your family has ‘outgrown’ it.
What do you think? Would you consider something like the Sleep Space system? Do you prefer traditional space saving ideas?
Just because you don’t have a backyard, doesn’t mean that you can’t make the most of your outdoor living space. If you have a balcony, regardless of the size, you can turn it into a tranquil oasis where you will want to spend time. The first thing you need to do is evaluate the space you’re working with and decide what you will most likely do out there. If you think you’ll eat or need a place to write or do crafts, etc., then a small table and chairs would be ideal. On the other hand, if this is just a place you’d like to escape to relax or read a good book, a comfortable chair is probably the most important feature.
- Furniture – If your balcony is like most, it’s probably not giving you a lot of square footage to work with. A bistro table will fit nicely or if you prefer a comfortable lounge chair, hanging hammock chair or something of this nature and then just add a side table to set your beverage on.
- Lighting – Most balconies have an outlet outside where you can plug a nice decorative light in. However, if this isn’t an option, there are plenty of solar lights that will soak up the sun’s rays during the day and then provide you with some lighting at night. Some even have motion detectors so they aren’t glowing all night.
- Rug – That hard concrete probably isn’t too inviting. Fortunately, there are a multitude of gorgeous outdoor rugs in every color, pattern and size for you to choose from.
- Decor – Many people simply neglect to bring any kind of decor to their balcony for whatever reason. There are outdoor canvases that are treated to stand up against elements, garden statues and wind chimes that will work well in this space. A water feature is always an added bonus to provide a soothing atmosphere and some of these are solar powered as well. Additionally, a small biofuel fireplace is the perfect addition to any outdoor space. They are environmentally-friendly and will provide ambiance and warmth on those cooler evenings. The best thing about these is that they’re portable so you can take them inside when you go in for the evening.
- Plants – No balcony is complete without plants or flowers. Corner plant stands gives you a place to really stack quite a few containers or you can hang them with hooks from the balcony above you. Most balconies have some type of railing so you can always make use of these and attach planters that are designed for this purpose. You can even grow your own vegetables if you want!
Even a small balcony can become a place to escape! Bring personality to your outdoor space but be sure not to overdo it. Too many items could make it cluttered and then it won’t be nearly as relaxing!
If you want to find a property with a balcony, you can find a vast array of properties, such as flats, houses or anything else at findaproperty.com
Wall hangings have a significant impact on the comfort and feel of your bedroom. Deciding how to decorate your bedroom walls starts with finding a theme and getting hold of wall hangings that are calming, peaceful and a reflection of you!
3 ideas for decorating your bedroom wall include:
Quilts are popular as wall hangings for good reason. They are beautiful works of art and tend to blend well with other bedroom decor decisions. You don’t have to go traditional with quilt patterns, either.
See quilt below, for instance:
Image Source: Flickr / bumblebeans
There are thousands of unique patterns out there as well as people who can create a quilt to your specifications, whether you want something old fashioned or a quilt with a science fiction theme.
Image Source: Soda Head
Hanging pictures is another way to go. Create a series family photos or nature photos in black& white or sepia to give it that warm, old charm. Place them in similar frames. These can be arranged in a grid, staggered all over a wall, or in a neat arrangement. Don’t worry if you can’t find a dozen of the same photo frame, either. Try visiting a garage sale and use an assortment of antique frames for a more quirky look.
Image Source: Zimbio
Whether you decide on traditional, 2-D paintings or the highly textured works of canvas art that are growing in popularity, it is important to keep a piece of art within your bedroom’s style and color palette. Choose paintings that have at least two colors in common with your bedroom’s decor and it will feel like a part of the room rather than an afterthought.
When it comes to bedrooms, the decor is arguably the most important decision. While the comfort level of the room is high up on the list, the appearance of your boudoir is a part of this comfort. If what you are looking at is not pleasing to your eyes, you will be less likely to spend extra time enjoying what is supposed to be the most enjoyable room of your home.
Retro style is, by definition, a thing of the past. It is a throwback, an homage, a shrine to the tacky, the outdated and the wood paneling…unless you do it right. Retro can also be part of the modern interior with a little creativity and a lot of daring. Here are three modern home accents that are really retro in their hearts.
The Bubble Chair by Eero Aarnio is perhaps the most iconic item to come out of the ’60s. Made in 1968, this chair has never really gone out of style. However, because it is from the ’60s, it has that retro space-age feel. Get a clear bubble chair and use it to augment the minimalism in your home, or use it as part of a lounge or in-home bar set up.
Image courtesy of Jeff Andrews Design
Aaah, the bead curtain. While once the domain of hippies and dazed and confused teens of the ’60s, they can now be incorporated into modern design without any strings attached. Take a look at the shimmering white bead curtain in the image above – it is subtle (no rainbow beads here!) and compliments the surrounding brown and white color palate.
Image courtesy of Martha Stewart
When going retro with oriental rugs, consider your art and color palate. Oriental rugs can be too bold, so you can offset them with simple colors and minimal patterns. It is usually best to choose tribal-like rugs over floral as well, as the geometric patterns in tribal rugs compliment minimalism and the modern home.
Image courtesy of HomeDesignFind.com
Buying a bed is a large and significant purchase and one that will hopefully give you years of comfort and lots of good sleep. During a seven-year lifespan, you will spend around 20,000 hours on your bed, so it is important to take some time and put some effort into making sure you buy the right bed for you. With so many options on the market you may feel overwhelmed with the choice. Here are 5 top tips that will help you to make the right decision when it comes to picking the perfect bed for you.
Think About Your Priorities
Think about what you want out of a bed and decide on what your priorities are. Factors to consider are the price, access to your bedroom, storage, turning the mattress, standard or electric beds, comfort of the headboard, any health issues, overall size and shape, materials and colour, getting in and out of bed and any other personal needs or desires you may have.
Try Out As Many Beds As Possible
Visit a bed showroom and take the time to try out as many beds as possible. If the bed is for two, you will both need to try it out simultaneously, as it will need to suit you both and be comfortable with you both on it. Wear comfy clothes and remove your outdoor gear before getting on the beds. Lie in a normal sleeping position for several minutes and try turning too. You should be looking for comfort and correct support for your build and weight, not just firmness.
Bed and Mattress
Remember that a bed is a base and mattress working together and should therefore be considered together rather than as isolated items. This is not always possible, however and you may have to select a single or a double mattress, and bed base separately. Ensure that they are well matched, the mattress is the correct size to fit on the bed base and that you are happy that the elements go together. Not all bed sizes are standardized and even with the same name such as ‘King Size’, you may find that different manufacturers make a King Size in different dimensions.
Quite simply, bigger beds are more comfortable, especially if you sleep alongside a partner. Having room to stretch out, turn over and curl up without disturbing your partner is key to getting a good night’s sleep. With a bigger bed, you are much less likely to disturb one another, making your bed a more restful place to be and aiding in a quality night’s sleep for you both. Even if you sleep alone, a larger bed makes it easier to roll over in the night without waking or reaching the edge of the bed.
You Get What You Pay For
As with most things in life, you get what you pay for when it comes to beds. This refers to both the quality of the product and the service. Spend as much as you can possibly afford when buying a bed, as you will spend a large proportion of each night lying on it. The more you can afford, the better the quality and your bed should remain comfortable for a long time.
About our Guest Blogger:
Zoe is an avid blogger and experienced freelance writer, and loves to share her knowledge through content on the internet. Zoe is currently writing on behalf of bed superstore Archers Sleep Centre.
Now it’s the New Year, you’ll want to accessorise your home accordingly. One of the most popular current trends is moving toward green energy and gadgets and furniture that will allow you to do that will be the focus of this article, with a few ‘cool’ things thrown in too.
• New induction heated ovens are being developed, which, for those unfamiliar with the technology, use magnets to heat pots for cooking rather than traditional gas.
• Espresso machine with biometric capabilities? Though this may sound like a sci-fi fantasy, it is now a reality; each member of the household can program their ‘favorite’ coffee, and then simply place their finger on the machine’s scanner to prompt the machine to consult their coffee profile and make their drink.
• Electric radiators: traditional methods of heating are not as productive as some people think and electric radiators are one direction in which you can move to reduce your heating bills and carbon footprint. Not only that, but they look stylish!
• Mushroom packaging: thought it doesn’t sound particularly appealing, an alternative to polystyrene (a burden on the environment) has been produced that involves shaping fungal mycelium (baby mushrooms) into boxes. These boxes are biodegradable and, as they are stopped from growing fully, free from allergens and unable to ‘go off’.
• A good old fashioned plant: what better way to make your home green than to add a few flowers and plants? Though not ‘new’, they are perennial and can be bought to suit any existing décor and personal tastes. My personal favorite is a conifer tree.
Want in on a secret? Trendiness isn’t necessarily what’s “new”. Right now, a growing trend in interiors, especially in bathrooms, is giving everything an antique glaze.
Antique bathrooms can be subtle in their approach, or they can be a complete blast from the past.
Take cabinet styles for instance. You can create an antique look simply by adding a distressed finish to your current cabinets, especially if they are made from wood. Just be sure to safely apply the varnish and coatings to be sure to preserve your cabinet.
Cabinets can also be completely redone to get that antique look. Think beautifully, ornate, carved wooden shelves lining your walls, in either a rich brown or light neutral.
If you want to just dip your toes in the water of antique bathroom style, you can try upgrading your fixtures to reflect the dated-but-trendy look you desire. Rubbed bronze is always a good bet when going for the antique look.
Other accessories can give that antiqued feel too. Try adding a detailed, vintage, framed mirror above your sink. Going to anything gilded in gold or bronze can get you just the effect you’re looking for.
When redesigning your bathroom in the antique style, try to purchase sturdy, good quality pieces. Although flea markets and vintage shops can offer great finds, don’t be afraid to really test out the merchandise before buying. If the pieces are truly antique, you don’t want to buy them just for their style only to find out that they have no substance when you get home.
Wooden beds have long been a popular choice for the bedroom and continue to be bought by individuals who are looking for a durable and cost-effective sleeping solution. Wood is a renewable resource and for those with green concerns, it is worth noting that it is possible to purchase beds made exclusively from sustainable forests.
Wooden frames offer solid support to mattresses, providing both comfort and convenience due to the ability to disassemble frames when moving them from room to room, or even home to home. Though durable, in contrast to many modern metal counterparts, wooden beds can often be more easily repaired should a beam or support snap, or be broken in transit. Instead of sourcing a metal part or screw, you should be able to source or cut your own replacement beam at a low cost.
One of the most obvious benefits of choosing a wooden bed is the peace of mind provided by the fact your bed is likely to last for years to come. With this in mind, it’s worth selecting a bed that will service your needs for the duration. It is of course possible to alter the appearance of a wooden bed through staining or painting in order to fit with changing interior schemes, but if you buy a single bed for your growing child and they outgrow it before you would ideally like or need to replace it, you may regret your initial investment. It may therefore make more financial sense to purchase a three-quarter or queen-size bed that will see a child through their teenage years and save you the time and expense of an additional purchase in the long run.
In most homes, bathrooms are relatively small so creating a whole new look can often be done with minimal changes. Unless of course, you want to gut the room and start over fresh, this is fine too! The trick is to basically decide on a theme and color palette and carry it out throughout the whole room.
Creating a coherent look consists of using the rule of three as your guide. This means you need to repeat every major color three times. Bathrooms are spaces you can really have fun with but you still need to employ a few practical points.
- Safety – Style should never come before safety. Step up tubs must have handrails, floors should be slip-resistant, etc.
- Look into the Future – If you’re spending a substantial amount of money, you want to make sure that this is what you’ll still want in the future. If you have to put off the remodel for a month to make sure you still feel the same away about your choices, so be it.
- Simplicity – Too many things in a small space look very cluttered. If you have a large room, you can add more items but small rooms should be simple with a place for everything.
- Quality – Just because it’s the bathroom doesn’t mean it shouldn’t receive the same consideration as other rooms in your home when it comes to buying quality products.
Many people jump into a bathroom remodel spontaneously. This is a room that is entitled to as much thought as any other area in your home. When in doubt, wait and see if your theme and color palette are still appealing to you down the road.
There is always so much talk about making a small room look larger but what do you do when your room is so big that you can’t seem to make it feel comfortable? Well, with the right furnishings and tricks you can make your extra-large room feel less like a museum lobby and more like a cozy home.
- Color Choice – While you don’t have to have a palette full of dark colors, you do need a few to close the room up a little. Even painting one wall dark will make a drastic improvement to draw the wall in toward the room’s core. Some people even prefer to paint the ceiling a darker shade than the walls as well.
- Scale – Large rooms can accommodate big pieces of furniture. This doesn’t mean that you have to stuff it full but you can choose large sectionals, shelving and pieces of art that would dwarf a smaller room.
- Arrangement – If you have the extra space in your room, why not add extra seating and set up a small reading or game area? What about adding a small bar or using screens to create a room inside a room?
- Accents – Be sure to incorporate the dark colors in your palette into your accents and make sure that they are scattered throughout the room, not just all in one area.
Having a large room can certainly be challenging to decorate if you desire that warm home feeling but with a little extra thought, you can cozy up the space without making it appear cluttered. Also, don’t forget plants! You have space for extra-large leafy greens so take full advantage of this wonderful opportunity to bring live art into your home.