A Beautiful Backyard

Investing in your outdoor space can become expensive. That is why they say it is an investment. Proper landscape, seating, and lighting can make your backyard an oasis. We want to help you make that oasis with a realistic budget. 

 

1. Brighten the space.

If you plan to entertain outside at night, install some lightning around your backyard. Lighting an outdoor space allows you to get artsy. Hanging a string of Edison-style light bulbs can bring romance and warmth to the outdoors. These lights are known to be energy efficient and have a low brightness, which is perfect for your outdoor oasis.

-You can even place some candles and tiki torches around the yard for extra lighting. Just remember to always make sure your candles and torches are completely out before going back inside. 

 

2. Get greenery. 

Adding greenery to your home brings life to an outdoor space. Take on a fun project and build a flower bed. You can even plant your own vegetable garden. Pick up some chalkboard signs from your local craft store and make it personalized. 

-If you are not ready to completely redo your landscaping, add some potted plants to your backyard. The potted plants will liven up the area and do not take as much maintain. 

 

3. Stylize with decorations.

Decorating your backyard can be extremely fun. You can decorate with affordable items from your local discount retailer. Incorporate items that you would even find inside your home: candles, pillows, throw blankets, bird cages, flowers, etc. These will be things your guests notice most because you have added your personal touch to the outdoor space. 

 

4. Finish up with furniture. 

Furniture will be the most pricey portion of outdoor spaces. Investing in good furniture can be highly beneficial in the future. Rather than choosing inexpensive future now, take the time to save for quality furniture. 

 

Creating your outdoor oasis with a low-budget is possible! It takes time to make it just right, but you are embarking on a creative journey. Let your thoughts become reality. In your backyard anything is possible. 


Homeowner’s Toolbox

Whether you are a new homeowner or have lived in your home for several years, having the right tools at a moment’s notice is essential to happy, efficient living. Let us add to your tool box and discuss the importance of owning each tool. 

 

Your tool box needs: 

  1. Hammer. Experts encourage homeowners to purchase two types of hammers. One hammer should be “heavyweight” and one should be “lightweight.” The weight of your hammer depends on the project. For instance, when you are using smaller nails, you should use the lightweight hammer.
  2. Tape Measure. There will always be a need for a tape measure if you want the job done right. We suggest that you buy a tape measure that locks and retracts back to its original position. These tape measures help with the ease of doing a project. 
  3. Pliers. One of the most helpful tools for homeowners is a nice pair of pliers. When buying your pliers, look at the various kinds of pliers available. We recommend buying several pliers that will each serve different purposes. 
  4. Screwdriver. One project may need a certain screwdriver head (Phillips) whereas another project may need a different head (Cross). Screwdrivers take on various forms so be sure to buy one driver with a variety of “interchangeable heads.” 
  5. Nails, screws, bolts, nuts, etc. If you are building something from scratch or using a prepackaged design, be sure to have the proper tools. We encourage you to buy extra nails and screws because you never know when you may need some extra. 
  6. Wrench. A wrench will be a helpful tool to have for different projects. Home improvement stores sell an array of different sizes, but you could just buy yourself an adjustable wrench. 
  7. Drill. Drills help with extensive projects that would require a heavy amount of manual labor with just your screwdriver. Skip the extra work and invest in a quality drill. You will also need a variety of drill bits for your projects. 

 

Having your essential tools will be helpful for any home improvement project and now, your tool box has never looked so good! Are they certain tools you cannot live without? What are they? We encourage you to leave your comments below. 


A Home Office

If you have ever worked from home, you understand the importance of having a home office. It is a place that you can do your work as well as organize any of your household paperwork. Home offices have become a lasting trend over the past decade and can help the organization of your home. If your home allows the space, we recommend creating yourself a home office. They do not need to be an entire room. You can place your office in a corner of any room. Make sure the room contributes to a helpful work environment. Placing the office in your baby’s bedroom corner may not be the best idea, but have it in a corner of a quiet, clean space. 

 

Since home offices have become popular, there is a lot of advice about what to include in your office. Home offices will ideally need some sort of a table and chair. The rest of the furniture and decorations can be personal preference. Items include pens/pencils, notebook, stapler, tape, envelopes, paper, sticky notes, white-out, paperclips, calculator, calendar, computer, etc.

 

Keeping your office organized will contribute to its effectiveness. You are likely to avoid using your messy office if it is not organized. Since offices can become a mess quickly, set rules for yourself:

 

    • Try to never leave anything out on the desk.
    • Keep any electric cords tucked away and out of sight. 
    • Install shelving or a bookcase to give your books a home. 
    • Have somewhere to put your pens and pencils (Jars, containers, canisters, etc). 
    • File paperwork instead of leaving it out. Offices are great for filing/sorting through your mail. 

 

Once you have decided to create an office space for yourself, do not hold back. Make sure to include all the items you will need to have it run efficiently. The last step is to decorate. Decorating should come last because you need to be sure you have room for all the essential items. After you put the finishing touches on your office, you will feel brand new! Congrats, you now have a designated area to do all your work.

Patio Redirect!

It’s that time of year when the need to clear your porch off and get it ready for the summer gatherings you have planned. After the winter and spring months your patio may be a mess though, and it is hard to know where to begin when planning on redesigning and sprucing up your outdoor space. A few quick and easy ideas may be of some help to you as you prepare your outside area of entertaining and enjoying warm, comfortable nights.

 

One of the most important aspects of your outdoor space will be lighting. Of course, barbecues begin when the sun is still up, but they are sure to stretch into the dusk and evening hours as your guests and family relax and enjoy each other’s’ company. Stringing lights to provide your outdoor space with adequate lighting is a must. Don’t rely on your backyard floodlights either, this lighting will be too harsh for entertaining. The soft glow of strung up lights or patio lanterns is sure to set the mood.

 

The next most important aspect of your patio is going to be making sure that you have a sitting area for your guests and your family. The amount of seating will depend largely on the size of your space so consider what you have to work with and plan accordingly. Don’t forget to be sure and provide some type of table that the seating is congregated around so that guests have a place to set their food and drinks as well. You could even double the table as storage and get a table that’s top is removable and allows for storage within it.

 

Finally, no patio area would be complete without planters to set the mood outside. Get creative and come up with ways to make decorative planters. If you already have a bunch of pots ready to go, purchase some paint in some fun colors and paint the planters yourself. Or you could come up with something a bit different and repurpose an old battered antique such as an tire you might have laying around, or and old wooden basket.

 

Once your patio is clean and decorated enjoy having your friends and family over on warm summer nights outside. With the right seating, lighting, and decoration your space will feel relaxed and ready to go.

Home Office Tricks

Your office is so much more than just a room with a desk, it adds the essence of your home. A home office is where your work can be brought home, paperwork is organized, and internet browsing is done. The office, wherever it may be in your home, can be practical as well as stylish. The two concepts go hand-in-hand when organizing your home office. We have the perfect list of tricks for you to organize your office space. 

 

Home Office Tricks:

  • Find it in the files. Organize your home office by separating bills and necessary paperwork into a filing drawer. Mark each file with a label to ensure the papers go in their rightful home. Investing in a label maker will help guarantee you know what belongs where and you will have quick, easy access to your files.  
  • The ultimate tidy up. Electronic cords can become easily tangled and look messy in an office. You can velcro your cords together to hide the overwhelming bulkiness of the cords. Label each plug with your new label marker to ensure you are unplugging and plugging in the right electronic. 
  • Computerize your life. If you have a lot of paperwork, invest in a desktop scanner to go paperless. A lot of your paperwork can be put on the computer and stored digitally for later use. 
  • Incorporate a Grommet Hole. Some desks have grommet holes already installed in them, but if your desk does not, it is an easy fix. Installing a grommet hole will help collect all your cords into one area of the desk to encourage tidiness. 
  • Space Jam. Unfortunately, it is extremely easy to run out of space to put your things. Think of ways you can keep your all items without taking up valuable desk space. If you have a desktop computer, consider mounting the monitor on the wall to provide more room on the desk. 
  • Buy more cordless features. We are in the age where cordless electronics can be found everywhere. Buying cordless will give it a cleaner appearance and eliminate clutter. 

 

Now you can get some work done in your stylish yet functional home office space.

Distressing Your Dresser

Quality furniture can and should last you a lifetime. Your furniture is extremely versatile in looks. The entire look of a chair can change just by being reupholstered. Old mirrors can become art pieces. Dressers can become something you never thought you could own. Let us add character to that old dresser that you have always hated. The one that you cannot seem to find a spot for, yeah that one. Distressing the piece will make your dresser a chic, timeless piece.

 

Supply List:

  • An old dresser
  • Sandpaper
  • Tack Cloth
  • Paint Base Coat
  • Polyurethane (Finishing Coat)
  • Paint Brush 

 

1.  Prepare your workspace.

Distressing your dresser involves sanding and painting so consider moving the dresser to an area that can get a bit messy (your garage, backyard, etc).


2.   Begin sanding 

Grab your sandpaper and begin gently sanding the dresser. 


3.   Wipe down your piece

After you have sanded the dresser, take your “tack cloth” and wipe down the dresser.

  • Tack Cloth is a cloth that has been processed with a sticky adhesive in order to pick up any leftover particles, dust, etc. (This can be purchased at any home improvement store).


4. Apply the base coat

You will begin to paint your entire dresser with the base coat paint. You can choose whatever color you would like for this step. 

  • Make sure to buy a satin latex paint for your base coat.


5. Let the furniture dry


6. Grab your sandpaper

Once the dresser is completely dry, you can begin sanding areas that you would like to look distressed. 

  • Note: Distressed dressers are meant to look like they naturally became that way. Think about the places that would have become distressed over time and begin sanding those areas.


7. Wipe it down

Grab your tack cloth again and wipe down your dresser to get rid of the leftover particles. 


8. Apply a paint finish

You can use Polyurethane to finish off your dresser.


You have now created a timeless piece of furniture from an item you once hated. Remember, you can distress a wide variety of your furniture items and we hope you love your “new” old dresser.

De-Cluttering Your Garage

One of the most neglected areas of the house for organization is the garage. Our focus usually ends up being concentrated on the sections of the home that will be viewed by visitors the most while the garage ends up playing the role of storage area for the items that don’t necessarily have a proper place indoors. It may not be the first thing on your mind when trying to declutter your home, but making sure that it’s items are easy to access can help your day run much more smoothly.

 

If possible, clear as many items out of the room as you can. Once they’ve been removed, take an inventory of everything. Of all the pieces that you’ve pulled out, how many are necessary in this space? Is some of it just junk you haven’t had time to dispose of? Do some items belong in a different storage area that you didn’t have time to place them in?  Well, here’s your chance to make it right!

 

Items you no longer need, organize them into either waste or recycling bins. If you are dealing with hazardous material, check your local waste disposal laws for proper handling. Next, return all misplaced items to their proper storage areas, whether it is an attic, an outdoor shed or even a borrowed item from a neighbor. Now that you’ve pared everything down to essential items only, think about the best way to keep them organized and accessible for future use.

 

Your garage became cluttered for a reason! New organizational units may be the key to fixing the issue. There are great products available today for every garage size to keep your items organized.   If you don’t have a lot of floor space, hanging overhead shelves can help provide some much-needed storage. Hanging wall units equipped with hooks can help keep gardening and automotive tools at arm’s length for your next project. Hang hooks up high to store bicycles vertically as well as other various sports equipment. If you have a few feet of room available, there are different varieties of metal and wooden shelving and cabinetry for storing miscellaneous workshop items.

 

Customize these units to your convenience. The easier things are to store after use, the more likely you are to not have to do a major closet clean like this any time soon! 

Adding Crystal Accents to Your Home

Looking for something to add to your interior’s design that will catch the eye while adding a finer touch to your space? Consider incorporating crystal decor into your home. It’s naturally reflective appearance helps to provide light and depth during the daytime and adds glisten and shine in the evenings. While crystal pieces are more on the delicate side, with careful placement away from pets and children, they can add a definite pizazz to your home.

 

Modern crystal chandeliers have come a long way from the one you saw hanging above your grandmother’s dining room table. They can range from large and elaborate to long, slim and minimalist. There’s a style to accommodate every taste.  For special occasions, you can place crystal candle holders in the center of the table for a dazzling touch.  While serving dessert, a cake stand with hanging crystal strands makes a beautiful statement.

 

For non-food related crystal ideas, add a decorate vase or bowl to the center of your table.  Assorted colored crystals in a wall art piece can serve as a focal point in your living room as can carefully placed obelisks of differing sizes. To add a little decoration for a celebration, hang some crystal garland to wow your guests. For side tables, glass boxes and a lamp with crystal accents add elegance to the room. If a large chandelier is not appropriate to your space, try wall sconces with crystal strands for your lighting.

 

Finally, give your furniture and doors a vintage look by changing out their knobs for crystal ones.  This look can work just as easily on bathroom drawers as it can for kitchen cabinets and closet door handles. Use clear crystal or colors depending on the impression you would like to make.

 

No matter where you choose to add crystal accents in your home, they are sure to get noticed.  Without overdoing it, adding a little crystal to each room will give it that little extra sparkle you are looking for. Experiment with the look of crystal in your home and we promise you won’t be disappointed!

Your Junk Drawer

We all have one. That drawer that serves no purpose holds an infinite amount of random items, and always has things added to it but never taken away. You guessed it, it is a junk drawer. Junk drawers tend to get on everyone’s nerves because they house an array of miscellaneous items and no one enjoys looking through them. Organizing your junk drawer does not sound like a walk on the beach, but the after the effort, it will be well worth the frustration. The key to organizing your junk drawer is that you cannot place random items into a different drawer afterward. Let us set a rule for ourselves: we are going to organize your junk drawer and another drawer will not show up in its place. 

 

Let us get started:

 

  • Take it all out. Yup, you heard it correctly. We are starting from scratch here. Place all of the drawer’s items on your counter. 
  • Sort out your items. Now that all the items are on the counter, we are going to sort through them. We will create certain piles: trash, give away, relocate or stay. You need to decide how you want to repurpose this drawer. Determine what you want to be stored in this drawer. Just one classification for this drawer, we are getting strict with ourselves. After you decided on the contents of your drawer, you can move the piles as needed. Throw the trash away, place the giveaway in a box for charity, relocate the random miscellaneous items and keep what you think belongs in this new drawer.
  • Buy a drawer organizer. Depending on what contents you will place in this drawer, an organizer can be life-changing. You can place your smaller items in tiny containers throughout the drawer. Recycle your old jar lids and use them as a container for paper clips, push pins, rubber bands, etc. 
  • Be strict with keeping it organized. Keep this drawer constantly organized, because as soon as one random item is thrown in another will suddenly appear. Inform the other people in your household of the new drawer’s purpose. 

 

Junk drawers happen, we totally get it. Another one may appear over time and in that case, pull out this blog and restart the organizational process. 


Your Junk Drawer

We all have one. That drawer that serves no purpose holds an infinite amount of random items, and always has things added to it but never taken away. You guessed it, it is a junk drawer. Junk drawers tend to get on everyone’s nerves because they house an array of miscellaneous items and no one enjoys looking through them. Organizing your junk drawer does not sound like a walk on the beach, but the after the effort, it will be well worth the frustration. The key to organizing your junk drawer is that you cannot place random items into a different drawer afterward. Let us set a rule for ourselves: we are going to organize your junk drawer and another drawer will not show up in its place. 

 

Let us get started:

 

  • Take it all out. Yup, you heard it correctly. We are starting from scratch here. Place all of the drawer’s items on your counter. 
  • Sort out your items. Now that all the items are on the counter, we are going to sort through them. We will create certain piles: trash, give away, relocate or stay. You need to decide how you want to repurpose this drawer. Determine what you want to be stored in this drawer. Just one classification for this drawer, we are getting strict with ourselves. After you decided on the contents of your drawer, you can move the piles as needed. Throw the trash away, place the giveaway in a box for charity, relocate the random miscellaneous items and keep what you think belongs in this new drawer.
  • Buy a drawer organizer. Depending on what contents you will place in this drawer, an organizer can be life-changing. You can place your smaller items in tiny containers throughout the drawer. Recycle your old jar lids and use them as a container for paper clips, push pins, rubber bands, etc. 
  • Be strict with keeping it organized. Keep this drawer constantly organized, because as soon as one random item is thrown in another will suddenly appear. Inform the other people in your household of the new drawer’s purpose. 

 

Junk drawers happen, we totally get it. Another one may appear over time and in that case, pull out this blog and restart the organizational process.