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Archive for October, 2010

Tidying up your home

Home Storage For many of us tidying up is an ordeal to be dreaded. The fact is that when one gets down to it it usually isn’t so bad after all. What looks like an hour’s work might when push comes to shove take us about ten or fifteen minutes. But it looks an insurmountable problem when it is spread all over the floor, and across the settee, and over the backs of the chairs.

The perfect invention would be a room, or better still a house, that tidied itself. Affordable digital technology has yet to meet that challenge. In the meantime though, we can help the situation along by ensuring that every incorrectly located item can have a home of its own whence it can be repatriated.

The trick is to ensure that for every item in the house that has the potential to move there is a bag, a hook, or a rack. For the disorganised like myself, surprising amounts of time are spent trying to recall where an object is or what I have done with this or that. It could all be so different.

The other demand of course is that in most ordinary homes at least space is a finite resource. It is always the case that when things are not filed or folded away but rather strewn or cast in the direction of momentary convenience the home begins to look smaller and cluttered. Organisation is not only a filing system, it is a space creator too.

One of the most useful additions to any home is the simple storage unit. Elfa produces an impressive range of baskets – free standing, wall mounted or designed to fit in our cupboards. It is worth taking a look at the Elfa range to get an idea of just how many practical varieties are available.

If on the other hand spice racks are what you are looking for the range offered by Zevro is certainly worth perusing.

Of course because storage is essentially a practical science that doesn’t at all mean that items installed into the home for the purpose of must necessarily be bland, nor purely functional. It is entirely possible to introduce fixtures and fittings which, whilst their primary purpose is for helping to keep the home tidy, are themselves pleasing to the eye and actually possess a decorative quality quite of their own. One of the best illustrations of this is the range of products by Black and Blum. Take a look at the innovative range of products that this manufacturer has available.

Remember – a tidier home is a bigger home, less stressful and better organised.

The act of sitting down

Funky Seating The act of sitting down would appear on the surface of it to be a straightforward exercise. But when comfort is the bottom line there is a surprising array of options to be found.

Let’s face it, we aren’t always sitting formerly, with straightened back, at the dinner table. Sometimes we want to lounge around a little, maybe when watching the television or even whilst enjoying some sunshine in the back garden. The saying is to “put your feet up”, is it so unreasonable to take that literally? And then of course there is the dog, to whose every desire his doting family must observantly attend.

Enter “funky seating”, a surprisingly diverse range of furniture items for our consideration. Hammocks, bean bags, foot stools – all of these provide us with different ways of sitting around and enjoying at leisure the world around us.

A Fatboy that will run and run

Probably providing one of the widest range of leisure seating options is Fatboy. Take a look here at some of the many items that are available – even for the family pet. Indoor and outdoor seating in many shapes and all sorts of colours. There can be nothing quite so relaxing as swinging between the trees in the back garden on a spacious and sturdy hammock. The extra large version has plenty of room for one, two, or even three people, is foam padded and made from a tough polyester fabric that offers the ultimate comfort.

One popular item at the moment is the Fatboy Metahlowski, a generously sized bean bag built from top quality Italian fabric and available in gold, silver, bronze and titanium versions which is so versatile it can even be used as a makeshift bed when you have visitors.

Another innovative piece of furniture is the LoJo Ball. Have a glance at this selection of products comprising foot stools which convert easily into comfy seats, each either with a patriotic or a sporting theme. The outside of the ball is made of soft faux leather whilst the interior is constructed from cord and vinyl. When it isn’t being used as a foot stool or a computer chair it even deflates and folds up into its own carrying case.

A little imagination when it comes to seating not only challenges convention but changes the rules altogether.

Wall decoration – from caves to today’s homes

Wall Decoration History doesn’t tell us as much about wallpaper as perhaps it ought to.

Then again as it is by definition temporary, it is perhaps unsurprising that less hard evidence of it remains than of murals and paintings. The pyramids and caves of our distant forebears were not, as far as we know, wallpapered. But then we have come a very long way since then.

It was the Chinese, as well as the scenic decorators of early 19th century France, who made popular the concept of wallpaper as a foreground display. Today however it has assumed far greater priority as a form of decoration. It would even be true to say that these days we sometimes embark upon our interior design programme with our choice of wallpaper, and then select our furniture and adornments to match.

Indeed, as the artist and writer William Morris once commented: “Whatever you have in your rooms think first of the walls for they are that which makes your house and home, and if you do not make some sacrifices in their favour you will find your chambers have a kind of makeshift, lodging-house look about them.”

If you have found the wallpaper you like, hang in there

It would be no exaggeration to say that our choice of wallpaper in many ways defines our home. It gives the visitor a clue as to the age and gender – not to mention the personality – of the occupier, provides an insight into their soul and captures the mood and spirit of the household.

If the choice is to opt for wallpaper then one of the biggest names in the business is unquestionably the interior designer and television celebrity Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen. Take a look at his range of products and get a feel for the ambience that you might create by hanging Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen wallpaper in your own living room.

On the other hand if conspicuously floral isn’t your thing then British Design Talent Wallpaper might better suit your taste.

Alternatively there is an appealing range from Linda Barker Wallpaper, including her current “Tempting” line of trailing florals and feminine silhouette prints which like her other papers is “paste on wall” for ease of application. Take a look here for some more details of this appealing option.

Your wallpaper says a lot about who you are. It may be artistic, serene, classical, abstract, modern, or just plain and unpretentious, but what is most important of all is that it is you.