Decorating for the Artistic Soul

Archive for March 2009

Very interesting video we saw today and wanted to share with the rest of you.  Great ideas here!

If you truly love to cook, you might want to design a chef’s kitchen in your home.  You will want to have an abundance of counters, with a large, study table (preferably butcher block) that can double as a work table and a dining table to be used for the casual meals or informal dinners.

The counter nearest the table should be used as a bar and serving station.  It’s a good idea to install a second sink at this location, since it will keep your family and guests away from the main sink you are working with. Your cabinetry should include a niche for your microwave and garages for your small appliances and tools.

A six burner range with stainless-steel cabinets on both sides can be stocked with your spices and oils. Traditional cabinets should surround the room on three sides. Organization in a room of this size is extremely important.

Basic white with bright color  accents will spice up the look. Specialty appliances like a fully equipped espresso bar,  built-in coffee makers, warming drawers, under-counter beverage centers and wine storage units are great fun  for those with the space and money.  A double oven, multiple refrigerator/freezer drawers, and even a cook-top with a separate range will make cooking for large parties a breeze in your upscale kitchen.

Have an indoor herb garden on your windowsill. What can be sweeter than picking your own parsley, rosemary, dill, chives, basil, thyme, mint etc. whenever you need seasoning for your masterpieces?  And what a lovely scent it will leave in your  kitchen!

Log cabins and summer vacations are a wonderful way to escape the fast paced life you deal with daily in the city. From New England’s woods to the Northeast to the many  lakes, both large and small,  of the Midwest, log cabins are the rage. The log style of these cottages and cabins can be round or plank siding, but are almost always small, simple, rustic havens.

Comfort and practicality are the keywords in cabin and summer cottage dwelling. You’ll walk past a couple of adirondack chairs or rockers,  through a screen door,  onto the wood floors of a large room with an open kitchen at one end and a fireplace taking up much of one wall.

Your kitchen cabinetry may well be plain painted wooden shelves, the table, a large wooden picnic table with long benches, and a braided rug on the floor.  A graniteware kettle for brewing the coffee  and a cast-iron skillet for frying fish will complete the picture.  Big, comfortable, and well-worn sofas, chairs and ottomans will be casually placed around the room. Lamps might be made of metal, wood, or duck decoys!

You’ll find home-made patchwork quilts tossed casually over beds and bunk beds in the bedrooms, with wooden or metal storage chests for clothing, books and toys. The furnishings  should be unpretentious, eclectic, and unmatched. Birch, pine or cedar are the woods of choice.

Accessorize with your sports equipment…fishing poles, rife mounted on the way over the fireplace, photos of the “great catch,”  the kids water skiing, or making s’mores outside over a campfire.

The first thing you should do when you are on a tight budget and are looking for bookshelves is to hit garage sales, flea markets and thrift stores.  As long as the bookcases are the height and width you need, and are solid, buy them.  You can easily antique, spray paint, or even wallpaper a simple bookshelf!

Used bookcases are easy to find, but go really fast.  So check out ads early, and be among the first at the sales.  It doesn’t hurt to check Craig’s list and eBay, either.

The old college dorm trick for making shelves is always a good idea…as long as the kids are  a safe age and height and won’t be climbing them.  All you need is a few concrete blocks, glass bricks, standard red house bricks, or even those heavy plastic crates and some solid unwarped, inch thick planks.  But if you use the plastic crates, fill them with your heaviest books to make them solid for anchoring the wood.

Ikea has a great site for inexpensive bookshelving.  However, be aware that it will need either assembly or wood finishing or both. The home improvement centers and discount centers also carry shelving that requires home assembly.

If your rooms are too small for large bookcases, and you need more storage, you can make solid nightstands from an old wooden trunk.  Just remove the lid, stand it on end, and add two or three shelves, and it will serve well for both functions. If your room is wallpapered, use the leftovers on the nightstand.  It will make the room appear larger as it blends into the wall.

If you’re searching for an elegant and smart way to dress up the windows in your home, consider bamboo window blinds. Using bamboo to make window blinds is not a new concept. In fact, they have been used throughout the centuries in Japan and Asia. However, they are becoming more and more popular throughout the United States and other counties as the benefits of these blinds are becoming more obvious.

Bamboo grows faster than any other plant in the world and it’s being used to make many products today, not just coverings for windows. It’s considered an eco-friendly material but that’s not the only reason why bamboo window blinds have become so popular. There are many reasons why people are choosing them over plastic and wood blinds. A few of these are listed below:

• They come in a variety of styles, sizes and colors.
• They’re the perfect choice to match any décor.
• They’re easy to keep clean.
• They can provide excellent protection from the sun’s rays.
• They can be easily opened or closed.
• They provide good ventilation.
• They can be easily installed.
• They’re reasonably priced.

Bamboo window blinds are stylish and can give your home an elegant look and feel that you can’t get with the plastic or wood blinds. They’re much more durable than they appear and they can last for many years with proper care. The bamboo can be treated to protect the blinds from insects and moisture which will also extend its life.

With so many colors and styles to choose from you are sure to find ones that will go perfectly with your décor regardless of what theme you have in your home. They have that appearance that simply looks great with all styles of furniture. They’re prefect for the living room, dining room, kitchen, bedrooms and can even be used in the bathroom.

If you would like a specific color or style that you can’t find, there are some places where you can even have them custom made. Bamboo window blinds are a great choice that can enhance and bring out the beauty of any style home.

You may already know that when it comes to decorating around your home, even the smallest details can make a big difference. The bathroom is a very important room that often gets overlooked. This is one room that your guests will spend time in and also one of the only rooms they are likely to spend time in alone. This will give them opportunity to look around and really analyze the bathroom.

How you choose to decorate your bathroom may depend on a number of factors. It’s important to take all things into consideration so you can choose the best bathroom look possible. For example, who will be using the bathroom? If it’s for children, you might choose a fun décor or their favorite cartoon characters.

If it’s your guest bathroom, you might want to use more neutral colors and décor schemes that will make a greater range of people comfortable. Some other things that you might consider are what colors you like. Many people enjoy decorating the bathroom in a color that makes them happy, peaceful or comfortable. The overall brightness of the bathroom will help determine your color scheme for accessories.

When choosing accessories, you also want to look at what people who use the bathroom will need.

1. Are you towels easily accessible?
2. Are there enough towels?
3. Can the toilet tissue be reached?
4. Do you have backup toilet tissue?
5. Is there a shower or bath tub in this bathroom?
6. Are shower accessories included?

These are some of the things you will want to consider when accessorizing the bathroom. Lastly, remember the small details will complete the look. These are the small things that will make a big difference in a bathroom and will make your guests as well as the people who live in your home feel more comfortable in your bathroom.

Have you ever walked into a room and been stunned by the beauty that an antique chandelier brings to the home. Add the right furnishings to match and any home can stand out and look magnificent. Antique chandeliers create a unique atmosphere that says elegance and sophistication.

Many of these fixtures are passed down through each generation as family heirlooms. However, there are several other methods of obtaining these exceptional light fixtures. Some of these are listed below:

  • Antique Shops – You can check out some of the local antique shops to see what selections are available.
  • Online Websites – There are several online websites that sell antiques that might have a nice selection for you to choose from.
  • Estate Sales – You can do a little research and look for estate sales. You may find the perfect chandelier at one of these and maybe even a few more items to enhance your décor as well.
  • Auctions – You never know what you might find at an auction house making them a good place to search for antiques of any kind.
  • Flea Markets – Many times you can find these old but priceless light fixtures in flea markets at very reasonable prices.

Now that you know where to search for antique chandeliers, how do you know when you’ve truly found an antique? The tips below will help you know what to look for.

  • Materials Used – Start by taking a good look at the materials used to make the item. If it’s designed from polished steel that’s shiny and smooth, it’s definitely not an antique. The majority of antique chandeliers were made from materials such as brass, antlers, wrought iron, nickel, bronze and crystal. They are unique pieces that have distinguished markings that stand out and make a statement.
  • Fuel Source – Another distinguishing feature of these antiques is the fuel source. Originally, chandeliers used real candles or they were lit by using gas or kerosene. However, many of these have been modified to keep up with the times and they can now be hooked up to electricity.
  • Identifying Markings – Many antique chandeliers have distinctive markings that are an indication of the era in which the chandelier was first made.

Antique chandeliers are beautiful pieces that can help create an elegant and relaxing atmosphere. Now that you know what qualities make up antiques and where they can be found, you can start your search for the antique chandelier that is perfect for your home. Have a wonderful time shopping around!

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