Wouldn’t you agree that it is about time you made your home a more comfortable place to live, love and relax in? Many of us have grand ideas every year that we forget about, or just don’t put enough effort into sorting out. But perhaps 2014 deserves a bit more hard work from you! Imagine having the perfect pad this time next year; somewhere that you want to spend lots of time, as well as showing off to all of your nearest and dearest.
It is possible to do; you just need to make a plan and stick to it. So if you want a few ideas of how you can turn your home into a haven, keep reading for a bit of insight…
The first thing you can consider is adding a few luxury items to your home and garden. Not everyone has a footballer’s budget when it comes to the home, but this doesn’t mean you cannot dabble in the high life now and again. It can certainly feel worth it when you have saved up for a special treat that will make you feel a million dollars. Whether this is a widescreen television for your living room or a hot tub for your terrace, you will know exactly how to give yourself the comfort you crave. Other popular choices are completely refitting the bathroom so it has the appeal of a spa, or adding a walk in wardrobe and en-suite to the master bedroom.
Upgrade your furniture
Sometimes you only need to look as far as your furniture to improve comfort levels, especially in the bedroom or living room. Do you remember the reclining chairs that Joey and Chandler had on the television programme Friends? This could be something you think about for your own space. There are plenty of amazing sofas in the shops that could be the perfect addition to your entertaining areas in the home. Also, think about how a new bed could improve your quality of sleep, which might actually positively contribute to other areas of your life.
Make a ‘man’ space
There are many homes that have an ongoing struggle between comfort and classiness, and this is often an ongoing feud between man and woman. However there is often no point fighting to have one room looking two ways, so just use another room in the house if this applies to you. It makes sense to have one area that is ideal for accommodating family for formal events, and another that is perfect for a group of males who wish to watch the big football or rugby match. Think about how much potential there is to make two amazing spaces within the same property.
Create more bedrooms
It is nice to have people over to stay without making them sleep on the sofa, so perhaps you might be inclined to create more bedrooms. This is sometimes possible for those who are able to build into their attic, or even build a brand new extension. Have a look online for some loft conversion ideas so you can get a general idea of how you would like your new space to look when complete.
In today’s modern society, we cannot function without multitasking – things just wouldn’t get done!
So now, we tend to expect the same from our possessions. If your mobile phone can be an alarm clock, a games console, a newspaper and a library in one, why can’t a coffee table do a little bit more than just ’hold’ things? And let’s face it; the majority of us are not living in a mansion, so utilising space is more important than ever.
This is why designers are focusing more and more on space-saving, multifunctional interior design. The good news is with a bit of effort and a little DIY aptitude you can achieve the same results without the costs of hiring someone.
Of course we are all used to the concept of something being both aesthetically pleasing and functional, but what if we would turn it around and think of the practical uses first? This approach could help you create beautiful accessories for your home.
If you need some extra storage space but don’t want to fix yet another cabinet to your wall, why not create your own display/storage unit for pens, letters, jewellery and little souvenirs from used cans. Use old paint or coffee cans, soak off the label and arrange them on the wall in a pattern you like. Why not give the cans a splash of paint to make it even more of a statement piece? And while we are talking about cans, what about a room divider made entirely out of these multifunctional, tin cylinders – lightweight and definitely eye-catching.
Ever thought of radiators as artistic focal points for the home? I think we can agree that traditional radiators are designed for function and can often be an eyesore in an, otherwise well-designed, interior. Luckily there is a huge variety of beautifully designed and energy-efficient radiators on the market. Such a radiator is the ultimate example of practical art.
One of the main purposes of multifunctional furniture is saving or even gaining space. A good and subtle way to save space in your living room is a sofa or chairs with a built-in storage, which is available from most furniture stores.
A new 2-in-1 design classic that we have been seeing a lot this year is the “reading chair,” which is like your very own library, which you can sit on! The chair stores books in the arms, base and back of the chair, creating the perfect reading space where you have your all your favourite titles close by – super stylish and a good solution if you’re living room is running out of space.
If you’d like your coffee table to hold something more than mugs, remotes and the odd pair of feet you can create a coffee table out of four (or more) wooden square frames, with the openings directed to the sides. This way you have a flat surface on top and storage inside the boxes for your DVD’s, magazines and books. And even better, if you have a party or friends come over you can clear the floor, separate the units and use them as extra seats.
One of the most well-known multifunctional fixtures is the sleeper sofa, but unfortunately almost anyone who has ever slept on an old model knows that waking up with a sore back goes with the territory. Now that the quality of sleeper sofas has improved massively over the years, you can your study room as a guest bedroom again, without the guilt!
And how about combining something you really need with something that will keep your kids busy for hours? If you have kids you know how quickly their toys can take over your living space. To solve this problem you can integrate the toys into the decor with a beautifully built, wooden, two story dolls-house, with a flat roof, that also functions as a coffee table. This way you can keep an eye on the kids whilst socialising with friends.
Although it might feel like radiators are quite static home accessories that really only have the single purpose of heating our houses, there are actually smart, multipurpose, modern options now available. One of my favourites is the radiator that is decked out with a mirror – ideal for hallways and/or bedrooms. You can even have them equipped with a shelf for your gloves and jewellery – the options are endless!
There is a huge selection of practical yet beautiful multifunctional furniture available for your DIY creations. However, remember to think outside the box. Try to have an open mind when looking at your interior and don’t be afraid to repurpose. Looking at things without the limitations of the initiated use of the object will bring you back to the old days, where a cardboard box could be anything from a spaceship to a home. Have fun!
Laura writes for Jaga Home Heating. When not writing, she can often be found trying to get more bang for her buck throughout the house.
Buying furniture is a big expense, so the last thing you want to do is invest in something that looks dated. If you want to make the most out of your purchase, you’ve got to know what the hottest furniture trends are.
Here are 6 of them:
1. Storage space that looks cool
Let’s face it — we’ve all got a ton of stuff! If you’re like most people, you probably don’t know how you accumulated all of it, but you’ve got to find a place to put it. Luckily, one of the hottest furniture trends of 2013 involves storing all of your stuff in a place that looks cool.
For example, there are plenty of great-looking bed frames that come with storage drawers at the bottom of them. Or, you can turn your living room into a secret storage room by investing in ottomans that are hollowed out in the middle — perfect for stashing stuff so that no one sees any clutter!
2. A bold dining set
No matter what kind of food you’re serving up, you need a cool place to eat it in. Luckily, you don’t necessarily have to buy a giant dining set in order to be bold. You can make just as much of a statement by investing in a dining room set that’s got a cool finish, or one that’s got wild curves instead of traditional corners.
3. Patterns that exceed your imagination
Forget about classic solid colors! If you want the trendiest furniture of 2013, you’ve got to embrace patterns. And, you don’t have to settle for just one. It’s no longer a faux pas to combine patterns, so see what catches your eye, then mix and match to create a décor that’s all your own!
4. Cool white
If you’re looking for a way to calm down your space — like, for example, in your master bedroom — don’t go with patterns. Instead, you can be just as trendy by indulging in bright white. White is a natural symbol or purity and innocence, so it will instantly relax you. And, as an added benefit, it makes rooms look light and airy — perfect for making your rooms appear larger than they really are!
5. Mix and match your time periods
Before, you had to pick a décor — modern or antique. Today, though, it’s perfectly acceptable to take advantage of both! For example, put an antique end table next to your modern couch. Just like the patterns, the mixing and matching you do will create a décor that perfectly represents your personality.
6. Great deals
Even though the recession is getting smaller and smaller in the rearview mirror, many people are still hesitant to make big purchases — like, for example, buying a whole bunch of new furniture. As a result, both traditional furniture stores and online merchants are offering some great deals.
Buy online, and you may get free shipping. Or, shop in person, and you may get to waive the delivery fee. Just keep your eyes peeled, and you could get all of the furniture you need, at a price that’s much lower that you thought.
That’s a trend that we hope will never go out of style!
Sam Nathan is a freelance writer. His interests include home improvements, finance, sports, travel and health.
4 Smart Furniture Choices for Infants and Parents
Not surprisingly, just like technology – baby furniture has grown into much more sophisticated fare. Gone are the days of singular white painted cribs and furnishings that barely made it to the toddler stage.
The newest trends in baby’s furniture are pieces that are often designed to go from cradle to at least young child and well beyond. Below are 4 smart furniture choices that parents can make for infants that are designed to grow along with them.
1) Baby Play Yards
Changing tables have long since become a thing of the past. Since they can only be used while the baby is in diapers, the cost of around $200 cannot be justified. This is why parents typically opt to use a baby play yard that has a built in changing table.
Their portability makes them one of the more useful items for around the home and travel, yet are so well crafted that they look nice in any decor. They can also be used as a sleeping area or playpen in virtually any location, including outside.
2) High Chairs
The modern day high chair has grown into a much more useful design since most of them double as a booster seat. Ergonomic and adjustable high chairs also have sturdy frames.
Some high chairs can also be used as bouncers with removable seats, while others convert to a child sized chair that sits closer to the ground as the baby gets older. The handy tray can also be used as a play or work table for children later.
Nursery furniture has also changed a great deal over the years. Instead of a baby style chest of drawers, armoires have become a new trend due to their great looks and versatility.
They come in a wide variety styles and colors to suit any palate or purpose. Best of all, as baby grows; armoires can be used to store toys, electronics and can easily transition to other areas of the home.
The cribs of today have unlimited elements that are inspired by the highest quality construction, but also have multipurpose attributes. Convertible cribs offer designs that are suitable for each gender, while lending themselves to traditional nursery styles if desired.
For instance, the new lifetime cribs are made to last and see a child well into young adult years. Some include built in drawers for toy and other storage, making them even more useful and space saving.
Modular cribs include the unique quality of changing from baby to toddler beds, day beds, and sometimes, even desks. Just one piece of furniture could actually take on four different personalities quite easily.
Best of all, these cribs can be fashioned to use as a bed for the baby and then easily swapped into a play area. Later, these types of cribs can be converted into small functional desks for gadgets and laptops.
Parents today are looking for more practical pieces rather than cutesy types of furniture for their children. Often, the goal is to find pieces that can work for as many as ten years or more.
With any luck, a great number of these pieces could go from cradle to college and beyond. Also, the longer a piece of baby furniture can last, the less expensive it is over time.
Jamica Bell is a blogger and proud grandparent of a toddler and preschooler. She contributes this article to highlight the versitility of modern infant furniture. During her research she found http://www.kidsii.com/ingenuity/ to be an excellent resource for how technology and innovation plays a part in modernizing infant accessories for both parent and infants.
When it comes to furniture, its color is the last thing that is given any thought. Agreed, that quality trumps everything else, but let’s not forget that the color of your sofa is the first thing people are going to notice about your furniture. So it’s important to make an impression. In addition, the right choice of colors helps you play sneaky, but clever visual tricks on your guests, when it comes to whether you want to make the room look big or round. You’re in absolute luck that leather furniture these days come in more colors than you can count on your fingertips. But, how do you know which is the right color for your home and lifestyle? Through five simple ways we help you arrive at a decision, you won’t ever regret.
How you live and where you live, play a very important role in the color you choose. You can’t quite expect your white leather couch to stay pristine white if you live in a dusty area, with windows wide open. The same goes for households with kids who can’t seem to love anything more than jumping up and down the couch, or dogs that seem to adore the couch more than their humans. If you’re the kind of household that eats everything from fish ‘n’ chips to pizzas to gourmet meals on the couch, and don’t mind being a little clumsy about it, black, dark brown or midnight blue are the ideal colors for you.
2) Placement in the room
How much attention you want to draw to your furniture also decides which color you choose. If you want furniture that just quietly blends in with the rest of the room, go for colors like beige, cream or off-white, or any neutral shade. For those looking to create a statement or to set trends, there are loud, attention-grabbing colors, like bold red, turquoise blue, neon yellow, teal, you get the idea. As an alternative, to make matters simpler, you can pick classic colored furniture and accessorize with little pillows, cushions and covers in vibrant and bold colors.
3) Use a swatch
When all else fails, there’s swatch. Why leave anything to doubt, imagination and experimentation, when a furniture store can simply give you a bunch of swatches? A swatch helps you get a glimpse into what color’s best for your sofa. In addition, it helps you to not only decide if the color will match the rest of the interiors, but also where the furniture will look its best.
4) Size of the room
Quite obviously, you can’t have an oversized piece of furniture in a matchbox sized home. Proportionality is important. So is intelligent choice of colors. If you intend to give your living area the illusion of spaciousness, opt for colors that conceal. For instance, a sleek black or classic piece of dark brown leather sofa looks sharp and defined, thus, when merged together with other space-saving tricks, makes the room appear larger. On the other hand, if you want to minimize the room or bring every element of the room closer together, white, pastels and reds serve the purpose to perfection.
5) Theme of the home
Is there a specific theme around which your home is decorated? Say, for instance, a specific country or an era long forgotten. And you still want to incorporate your leather furniture into the theme, resort to play of colors and designs. If the home is more towards the vintage, go for a sleek wood seating, with accents of dark leather. For those inclined towards art deco, a red or sea green leather banquette is just perfect.
This post was contributed by guest blogger Sophia Easton from Leather Creations, a leading custom crafted leather furniture company.
Photo Credits: image 1
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