Open-floor spaces are popular for plenty of reasons. By opening up the space and eliminating any visual barriers in the form of walls, an otherwise small apartment can appear much larger than it actually is. Besides, it’s very convenient for entertaining guests because you can still socialize with them while you’re refiling drinks or cooking in the kitchen. And if you have children, or want some in the near future, this kind of living space can allow you to have an eye on them while you’re doing some other business around your home.
But furnishing and decorating an open-plan home can sometimes seem a bit intimidating. If you’re searching for the right way to conquer this type of living space, perhaps you should start first by dividing it. Decorative room dividers are usually the perfect solution to subtly define functional spaces and add a bit of privacy, all that without disturbing the open character of the home. Here are some of the ways you can use these wonderful multi-purpose décor additions.
Create Separate Zones
In an open-floor plan creating a sense of separation can be difficult to do since you do not have much space to work with. However, with the help of decorative room dividers you can achieve a smooth illusion of multiple rooms blending within a single one. Using room dividers is much cheaper, easier and aesthetically attractive than putting up a drywall. For instance, you can separate your kitchen and dining area by putting up a divider between it and the lounging space. This also works well for defining a bedroom or a workspace. The nice thing about decorative room dividers is that they are portable, which means you have the flexibility to arrange the space however you like.
Everyone needs a moment of privacy within his own home, especially after a long, stressful day at work. And since there are no walls you can hide yourself behind, the lack of privacy can be a large issue for everyone sharing an open-floor plan with other people. But decorative room divides can function as an alternative wall, whenever you want to seclude yourself from the rest of the world. Simply by putting up a room divider around an armchair you can create an instant relaxation spot where you can read without anyone disturbing you. Moreover, a room divider can also function as an alternative dressing room preserving your privacy while getting dressed. Convenience at its finest!
Use a Partition as a Stylish Room Addition
Open-floor plans work best for people with a heavy dose of imagination who can make the most out of their living space. And room dividers give you plenty of creative freedom to stylishly transform any area. For instance, you can use a room partition to display stunning art, or even pictures of you and your family, on both of its sides. You can change your art composition with ease whenever you want to or when you acquire a new piece. Moreover, the room divider itself can serve as a bold decorative accent, whether standing in the middle of the room or behind a sofa. The various materials and designs of room dividers offer limitless decorating possibilities, it is up to you to find the one that sparks your creativity.
With hiking energy prices along with the fact that it has never been easier to use (and waste) electricity, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that a growing number of Aussies are looking for ways to lower the cost of their energy consumption. Luckily, the times are changing and more and more people are making an effort to switch to renewable energy solutions, such as solar energy.
The money-saving benefit solar energy offers is the main reason behind the growing number of people installing solar hot water panels. For instance, heating water comprises about 25% of the total energy consumption of a single household, hence installing solar hot water panels can really reduce your electricity bill. But saving money is not the only reason to invest in a solar system.
Solar panels contribute for less or even no CO2 emissions meaning they can create energy without contributing to pollution. This makes them the most environmentally friendly power source on the planet. In the light of this fact, powering your home with solar panels can help reduce the effects of global warming.
Moreover, these systems are completely self sufficient. They are designed to harness large amounts of electricity just by capturing the sun’s rays. They absorb the sunlight and convert it into heat that is stored inside the solar panel which is heavily insulated. It has tubes and passages in the solar panel and pipe system that send the heated water to the boiler.
They can be either standalone or installed on rooftops. Rooftop panels are, as the name implies, mounted on the roof and ideally you would have them set at a 90 degree angle for more exposure throughout the whole day. However, if you have a flat roof, the system would require an incline frame to set it in the right angle for the more sun exposure. If however you can’t install a panel on your roof, maybe standalone panels are better suited for your home. They can either be put on the ground at a fixed angle, or be fitted with trackers that follow the sun to increase efficiency.
Additionally, some DIY enthusiasts might be able to install the solar system themselves, but since that involves heavy panels and electrical wiring, it is advised to take all the necessary safety precautions before undertaking such task. There are also a lot of schematics and ideas for homemade solar powered creations so going through some DIY sites is a must for anyone who wants to use the sun’s power to their own advantage.
The use of solar systems goes beyond making households energy self-sufficient. You can do with solar that you can’t with normal electricity, and that is installing it on a vacation villa, cabin or RV which is isolated from the electrical grid.
After you’ve owned a house long enough, you’ll find that the landscape posters and inspirational quotes you’ve bought at your local supermarket can’t cut it forever. When you’ve matured along with your taste in interior décor, you’ll start to realize that your walls deserve much more. And to be honest, there’s nothing like artwork to give life to boring walls and make a home complete. Art has the unique power to give any space more depth and more soul.
Ever since their invention, bunk beds have been all the rage among kids. However, they are utilised in many other commercial facilities as well, simply because there are many benefits that come with them. For instance, they maximise floor space, which is probably their biggest advantage. Floor space is important to a lot of hospitality businesses as well, and with bunk beds, they can cater to more people without having to sacrifice style and comfort.
You can easily find and buy bunk beds online from the convenience of your own home, and rest assured that you’re saving money, regardless whether you’re buying them for commercial or residential settings. A very common scenario is people moving into a new house with two kids, and the room designated for the kids is rather small, thus limiting their play space. That sometimes forces parents to make a separate room for both kids, which in turn results in increased electricity bills and other maintenance costs.
Moreover, bunk beds are very easy to clean. You don’t have to follow any special instructions. Just clean them as you clean regular beds. Additionally, they’re very versatile and have multi-purpose options. They can feature drawers and can easily be transformed into a sofa, for instance. This can be especially useful in commercial settings like hotels that are very limited space-wise.
One of the best things about bunk beds is that you can find both highly customisable, and non-customisable bunk beds to fit all your needs. Things like ladder movement, side rails for security and many other things like that can be extremely convenient for the kids and parents as well. For example, parents can tend to an ill kid without disturbing the other one.
If your kids are younger, they probably want to be close to one another, yet have their own personal space. I personally enjoyed sleeping in a bunk bed above my brother and doing playful things like dropping a spider and spooking him in the middle of the night. Moreover, the ladder is always fun to climb up and down and bunk beds make one hell of a bunker with just a sheet.
That being said, bunk beds can be a great addition to any kids’ room, hostel and any other hospitality service. You can find many types of bunk beds with different features online and in furniture stores. If you want to shop from the comfort of your own home, you can search and buy bunk beds online, and have them delivered to your door. Assembling and maintaining bunk beds is very easy, and it can be a DIY project to work on with your kids.
No home is complete without refreshing, luscious greenery. Just walk into a space filled with happy plants, and your mood instantly becomes uplifted. Any home adorned with houseplants is healthier, fresher, more colourful and vibrant. They are especially important for small and confined spaces where air can’t circulate that much because they produce fresh oxygen and clean the air naturally. If the reason you haven’t included houseplants in your home is because you consider yourself lacking a green thumb, or are too busy to tend to their needs, read on for encouragement on how you can keep houseplants happy and boost health and happiness in your home.
If you’ve ever had problems keeping plants fresh and alive, you might want to consider an alternative solution this time – modern self watering planters. Between your packed work schedule and your private life, it’s easy to forget watering the mini jungles in your home. But these planters have a smart, self-sufficient design, allowing them to go on for weeks without being watered. How does this sorcery work?
When you pour water into modern self watering planters, it goes straight to a special reservoir. The reservoir has a special cover which allows water to be dispersed into the soil gradually and evenly. This system significantly minimizes seepage and prevents water from evaporating easily. People who travel a lot might find these planters especially useful because they allow them to go on not watering the plants for weeks on end, depending on the type of plant, soil and temperature conditions.
If you’ve ever wanted a vegetable garden, but you aren’t able to have one because you live in an apartment or your yard hasn’t got enough space for it, self watering planters can prove to be a dream come true. In order to grow properly, many vegetables growing on stalks, such as tomatoes, need to have strong roots to support them. In the case of garden plants, the roots can draw natural moisture from underground water basins at all times, but with potted plants consistent moisture is impossible. When you water potted plants, the top layer gets the biggest amount of water while the roots receive the smallest fraction of it. But in self-watering planters, the water goes straight to the bottom, and the roots are the first to receive it. The constant supply of moisture stimulates roots to grow.
Another selling point of modern self watering planters is their sleek, elegant design. They usually come in smooth, rectangular shapes and in neutral colours that can complement any living space. A beautiful colour for any modern planter is white – it provides contrast with the greenery planted in it, allowing it to visually pop out. In any case, you should carefully think through the look of your planters because in the home, planters are also a decorative statements. When in doubt, a timeless, minimalistic model is always a good choice.
Just yesterday, Bill Gates urged the top 1% wealthiest people on the planet to lead the charge of footing the bill for renewable energy, and offered to pay the first 2 billion himself! Slowly but surely, renewable energy is the future, and while a lot of people aren’t very receptive of the idea, and believe that installing a renewable energy system to power their homes, like solar energy is very expensive and not something that will pay itself off in the long run.
However, that cannot be further from the truth. In fact, there is a constant rise in interest in renewable energy systems for both domestic and commercial purposes, and if you’re ready to make the shift, there are a few things you should be aware of. The first question most people ask themselves, is the dilemma between on and off-grid solar systems.
Even though one setting or the other may sound like the ideal solution in theory, it’s much more complicated as to whether on or not off-grid solar panel kits make sense for a particular type of property. Before going more in-depth about the two types, let’s give them a brief definition.
An on-grid system is attached to the power grid, which is beneficial if your panels can’t produce enough power by themselves. Off-grid solar panel kits on the other hand, are completely self-sustained, and are detached from the power company grids.
Most people that install solar panels are motivated by the independence that comes with them. The off-grid solar setup means no power bills. This is especially beneficial in remote areas, where installing traditional means of power is a huge investment, or may be impossible altogether.
Others, choose this option for reasons such as energy-consciousness. Simply put, producing your own power to spend by yourself gives you a clear understanding of how much you consume daily. This eliminates the inefficiency of distribution and you don’t feel any responsibility in how much carbon footprint the power company leaves behind.
On-grid solar power is beneficial if for instance, you run a business that requires a lot of power to properly function. This way, you can use the energy from other people that are connected to the same grid as you are. Moreover, you could sell the power your solar panels gather up for profit. This is called net metering, and through this process you can save and earn money.
LED lighting is becoming extremely popular as of late, and for all the right reasons. Both in commercial and domestic settings, people are steadily replacing all of their incandescent lights in favour of LED lights. This holds true especially in places that require a lot of lighting, like playgrounds, theatres, stadiums, warehouses and backyards, as LED lights have a longer life-span, lower operation costs, produce less heat and are safer. Read More
Today, you wouldn’t exactly consider these wooden chairs with scrolls and contoured backs as modern, but when they first appeared they were light years ahead of their time. In fact, it was in the mid 1800s when German cabinetmaker-turned-chair-revolutionary, Michael Thonet, unveiled the silhouettes we’re so familiar with today – the bentwood chairs. It was the first time such a production method was used – heating wood to bend it into improbable chairs. The result was graceful, sculptural and surprisingly comfortable seating. Read More
Let’s just admit it, even if we don’t think we could ever be guilty of envy, we’ve all been guilty as charged when it comes to staring at how green the grass is in our neighbours’ yards. It’s nothing to worry about, yours can be green too, you just have to get to know your lawn well enough, and learn when and how to tend to its needs.
It’s needless to say you’re going to have to buy lawn mower that’s adequate for you. This is the sort of basic power tool that a home can’t do without, particularly if you have a rather big lawn waiting for you to cut it to perfection. The wide range of lawn mowers for sale, from steel, cordless, and ride on models, aren’t just designed to stand the test of time, but considerably cut down on your efforts and time as well.
Then again, you get bonus points if you buy lawn mower that’s one of the hybrid models, and serves as a mulcher also; you can take care of the yard debris and grass clippings full of nitrogen in no time, preparing your own natural soil nourishment product. Now then, when it comes to taking proper care of the lawn, you have to think of grass same as any other plant in your yard – it could do well with regular cuts, which in the case of the grass is past the growing points so it would become denser, and at the same time healthier.
To be able to get mowing right, it’s important to remember there are certain periods of the year when you can cut at a lower height, and when you should do exactly the opposite. The cooler months of the year are perfect for cutting off at a lower height, as opposed to the warm or hot days of spring and summer, when you have to avoid that. To make it simpler for you to remember, stick to cutting one third at the grass blades.
It doesn’t hurt getting to know more about the type of grass you have, and learn about its cutting requirements so you’d provide the proper thriving conditions, because they’re not all the same; what’s ideal for the bahia grass (up to 3 inches), isn’t ideal for the bent grass (up to 1 inch). Since not all lawn mowers are created equal, it’s advisable to read well into the manual of the one you purchase, practice first with a smaller patch of grass, and wear the adequate clothing so you’d avoid accidents.
If you’ve been wondering what your next home makeover focus should be, give the guest bedroom a go. We don’t often spend as much time on decorating this particular room as when decorating the living room, or our own bedroom for instance, and it’s high time this changed. It goes beyond using a compact sofa as the bed! You do want your house to be inviting, right?
I like the idea of being the perfect host, dazzling guests with my cooking and mixology (creating savoury cocktails) skills, and having the “mi casa es su casa” motto guide me through, I figured I could do with a nice guest bedroom makeover. It’s so easy nowadays to renovate your house homewares design shops can provide you with numerous options to choose from in just a few clicks. Besides, we have bountiful ideas to get inspiration from, like TV shows, magazines, and blogs.
Though at first I thought I had to splurge on this makeover, I realised it was about the choice of items themselves that has a say in making guests feel special in the house of the host, meaning there’s more to it than focusing only on pricier elements. This is why when wanting to make this room feel comfortable and warm, it’s important to start with the mattress. The last thing I want is for my guests to have a night of tossing and turning, waking up with terrible back pains and headaches.
I was able to find just the perfect mattress, ergopedic pocket spring, designed to firmly support the contours of the body and provide a night of quality sleep. Other house homewares items I picked for the task of coming up with a classy guest bedroom were comfortable Egyptian cotton bedding, microfibre pillow to match up the mattress comfort, and velvet quilt cover set. I increased the sense of comfort by piling up on the pillows and cushions in a variety of shapes, and warm pastel colours, which gave the room some more texture.
Having enough room for a desk on the one side, I opted to refurbish an old vanity table in pastel peach colour, that goes well with the curtains in the same tone, and added an elegant French provincial side table on the opposite bedside. The brass finished industrial lamps I’d chosen give the room a somewhat vintage look, setting up an intimate ambiance, and they nicely show off the intricate small paintings I’d hung around, with flower petals. The old framed mirror was the final touch, and I couldn’t be happier with the result. Makes me want to be a guest in my own house!
Every year, thousands of Australians receive compensation for injuries they’ve sustained while on the job. That can be very costly for the business, not just in terms of paying out large amounts of money for compensation, but manpower and productivity can also be affected. For this reason, every business should try to minimise the risks of injury as much as possible, and in the case of office workers, that means utilising the correct working desk environment, especially the chair.
When in doubt how to furnish or redecorate your living room, a good start is to turn to the masters. And who can boast with a long history of home design and improvements if not the Scandinavians? Perhaps the fact that the Northern climate keeps these people locked inside is the reason why their homes are the pinnacles of interior design. And since us Aussies are fans of the outdoors, we’d certainly benefit to learn how to achieve the Scandinavian balance indoors and freshen up our living room.