Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Adding Curb Appeal

It starts at the curb. Here are a few trouble areas your should address when considering curb appeal;

Landscaping. Replace dead plants ans shrubs with new ones. In spring plant some inexpensive flowers to add color and visual interest. Don't forget the lawn. Are their bare spots that can be reseeded, and don't forget to fertilize, what a different a lush greener lawn can make.

Porches. If your home has a porch make it charming and inviting. Have some outdoor seating and treat it as an additional living space. Some potted flowers and a clean outdoor mat can make a big difference.

Fence. if your home has a fence make sure that it is painted or stained so that stands out, looks fresh and adds some interest to the yard.

Lighting. what a difference new lighting makes. For not a lot of money, you can change out those pitted, faded lights and add new ones, updating the look of the front of your home.

Front Door. If you can't afford to change it, how about a new paint color, or add a kick plate to revive the look of the door instantly. Add a seasonal wreath and your home will say welcome!

Painting. Does the house need a coat of paint. How about a good power washing to make it clean and show worthy.

Windows. If any are broken they must be fixed or replaced immediately. If they are in great shape then clean them and make them sparkle and shine.

Driveway and Walkways. Does the driveway need any repairs? If so, fix and patch any cracks or holes. The same thing for the walk way. Make sure it is clear of any hanging branches that might block the pathway to your door.

By following these few guidelines, you are sure to gain the curb appeal that will add additional value to your home for very little cost.

Is your family room tired, dull and predictable?

Does your family room look tired, dull, and predictable? Here are a few ideas that can spruce up your room that won't cost a lot of money or take a lot of time.

Let's start with the floor and add a colorful area rug that will not only add interest to your room but will anchor your furniture arrangement by placing it under the sofa and coffee table. Two things happen; it instantly grounds the space and gives you color choices when adding accessories to the room. Take a color from the rug and add accent pillows, a throw, or even new candles of that same color to punch up interest in the room.

No focal point in your room, create your own. How about a interesting piece of art work. Try a large striking piece to make a dramatic statement. Or group a smaller prints together but use frames of the same size and color so they instantly relate to each other.

No art work, no problem. Just pick one wall and paint it a different contrasting color and create stunning drama!

Use what you have. Are you a collector of objects? Don't scatter them around the room, group them together and they will draw attention to the collection and make them look important. So if you're at the beach and collect some great sea shells, fill an apothecary jar with them and place them on your coffee table to remind you of the beach every day! If you collect clocks, books, colorful vases, or even antique toys group them together and they will create color and presence in the room.

Bring the outdoors in by adding plants and potted trees to the room. If you don't have the real thing go for the silk versions. They add color and drama to any space.

Choose one piece of furniture to spark interest. Do you have a special antique, a desk, hand painted chest, or a family heirloom properly displayed can be the star of the room!

So think outside the box and shake up that boring room. Take it from drab to fab with very little work.

Friday, February 1, 2008

How High Do I Hang Art Work?

A rule of thumb is to hang all pictures at 5'7" on center. This is eye level to the average human and is considered gallery height.

To do this measure 5'7" from the floor up. Mark here.

You want the picture centered on this height, so measure the picture from to to bottom, then devide that number in half.

Then, subject the difference between the hanging wire and the top of the frame and add that number to the mark at 5'7". That's when you put the picture hanging hook or pin.

It may look low because most people hang their pictures too high, so it will seem odd at first. Don't worry, it's correct!

Keeping It Cozy This Winter

You can't change the weather, but you can change any room in your house into a warm and cozy space without spending a lot of money. Take advantage of the in-store Home Sales that are happening now! Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Turn that dull bedroom into a deluxe retreat by adding a few special touches. New bedding, sheets, blankets, and new fluffy pillows not only add comfort but adds new interest to the biggest focal point of the room, your bed!

Don't forget the bathroom. New towels, a plush new bath mat and a clean new shower curtain can turn an ordinary bathroom into your own private spa. Windex the mirror and light some new sented candles and take a warm relaxing soak.

Is a new sofa not in the budget? Don't worry. You can add new interest to that old sofa by using a new slip cover. There are so many new designs and colors to choose from that your options are limitless. Find new pillows and a matching throw on sales and that sofa will go from looking old and used to new and refreshed in no time.

Aroma therapy is so wonderful and now is a great time to try some new candle sents while they are on sale. Have you tried the reed diffusers? They're glass bottles that are filled with different sented oils, that you put a handful of reed sticks into. They are great for adding a subtle fresh sent to any room.

Can't afford new counter tops for your kitchen this winter? How about adding new color interest with fresh new place mats and napkins. It really can enhance the look of your every day dishes for not a lot of money. Place a beautiful bowl with fresh winter fruit, like tangerines, apples, pears or oranges, then dim the lights and light some new votives and your kitchen becomes just as cozy as the rest of your house.

So check out the sales, freshen up your nest and stay cozy!