Insights Into Interior Design Designing In Style. Part Ii Traditional – Jacobean And Victorian

Global Interior Design Consultancy Company in London, UK for interior design services.
Interior design has always been impacted by fashion trends – both historically and in the modern day. In this article series, “Designing in Style,” I explore the meaning of style for interior designers.
I draw on my experience working alongside many of London’s best-known interior design teams. This second article in my series introduces traditional/period design, with a focus on the Jacobean and Victorian styles.

Traditional design uses materials that reflect the wealth and opulence of historic times. London Interior Designers will often take the best of the features that were available back then and skilfully combine them with elements that are available today. Traditional/period interior design projects tend to focus on elegance, with a look and feel that is comfortable, rich and sumptuous, although sometimes also a little fragile.

The Jacobean theme is popular in London mansions and other residences that have a real sense of history. The Jacobean style focuses on heavy wooden features, with dark-stained oak often used to create panels for walls and floorboards. Oak is also often used for the furniture, and the overall interior design feel is that of robustness, with pleasantly-proportioned pieces to fill the available space. Tapestries are also an important part of the Jacobean look. However, many interior designers recognise that tapestries can be impractical nowadays, and one approach often used by London’s best-known consultancies is to recreate the tapestry appearance on modern upholstered furniture or curtains.

One caveat with Jacobean interior designs is that the style does need plenty of natural light, because otherwise the darker wood stains can seem uninspired. This can be problematic in smaller London residences, but is generally not an issue with more luxurious mansions that often feature huge south-facing windows and substantial grounds.

The Victorian interior design style, by contrast, is considered a more staid approach. Interior designers often focus on small rounded tables, often covered entirely in cloth, and fat, heavily-buttoned chesterfield settees. So much of London became urbanised in Victorian times that the style also came to include nature as a theme for textiles, serving as a counterpoint to accelerating industrialisation. Consequently, Victorian interior design schemes often feature floral elements and birds on both walls and furnishings.

In the next article in my “Designing in Style” interior design series, I will focus on a third and final period style that is particularly important for London residences – the Georgian style.
Global Interior Design Consultancy Company in London, UK for interior design services.

Kitchen Sinks and Faucets

Kitchen sinks and faucets have come a long way since the days of the single rectangle bowl with standard faucets and knobs. Today’s kitchens are not just about function; they are also about beauty and design. Depending on your specific needs and style preferences, there are hundreds of models to choose from.

Some kitchens are busier than others and require additional sink space for cooking and cleaning. Others don’t see much use and can get by with a much smaller sink area, especially in condos and apartments. Designs cover all needs with sinks that come in single, double or triple bowls, and corner sink units that allow you to save valuable counter space in an already crowded area.

Sinks today are made from many different materials. Of course, there is the standard stainless steel seen in so many homes due to the fact that is the least expensive option, and it’s durable, resistant to stains, and easy to keep clean. However, on the higher end of the designer scale there are materials such as fireclay, granite and acrylic that add a decorative touch to the kitchen. Acrylic comes in several colors and even comes with an anti-microbial surface that helps to fight damage caused by mold, mildew and bacteria.

There are many sizes and shapes to choose from as well. Kitchen sinks can be round, oval, square or rectangle and can be configured side-by-side as most are, or in an L or diamond shape, depending on your preference and your space constraints. The most common ways to mount a kitchen sink are either from the bottom up or drop-in. Drop-in sinks are lowered into a pre-cut hole and form a lip around the edges of the counter top. Under mounting a kitchen sink, that is mounting from under the counter, brings the sink top flush with the counter and gives your room a more finished designer look.

Just as kitchen sinks have come a long way, so have the faucets. Today you can find a huge assortment of faucets that fit every taste and need, including goose neck faucets, pot fillers and even hands-free faucets equipped with infrared technology. Faucets come in a wide assortment of styles ranging from Victorian to contemporary and are made from such metals and alloys as chrome, brass, copper, nickel and gold.

With so many choices, shopping for a new kitchen sink and faucets to complete your new kitchen look can be quite an enjoyable experience.

Decorating Tips – Selecting Bedroom Furniture

Extraordinary Styling Extraordinary styling brings all of the above together. When people ask what constitutes an exotic style we be inclined to think of foreign cultural influences. As mass communication and the internet have “shrunk” the world, pretty and stylistic changes from round the globe have had a deep affect on furniture designs. The West Indies look adds mahogany finishes, stone and rattan, the Sahara look brings canopies, palm leaves and sandstone, and the Caribbean style comprises grasses, vibrantly colored fabrics and coconut husks. African influences add bright blends of colors, exotic stone and marble finishes, and Egyptian motifs. Native American influences add traditional rug patterns in fabrics, turquoise accents, handmade pottery and precious stones. Of course the list is endless but it is easy to see how many of these stylistic effects could shape a bedroom selection. It also brings up a best point in that several more daring homeowners opt to decorate using mixtures of styles and woods. Where 20 years ago most decorating did not comprise manifold woods in one room, these days you may find three or four woods in the same color family, a bed made of iron, and case pieces from two diverse styles. Anything goes particularly in extraordinary styling.

Transitional Styling The transitional furniture category is wide and covers a type that fits neatly among customary and contemporary furniture, normally borrowing style and building elements from both categories. For this reason, you will find transitional styles that are more customary rest that are more modern. Once you have your style selected, the pieces for a bedroom are reasonably standard. King beds augment in popularity each year, but periodically a consumer will downsize from a king to a queen. New flanged houses have big closets and built-in storage which leaves more room for non-customary furniture in the bedroom. Most famous are loveseats, chaises and large chairs. An area rug to set off that part of the room is also a vital part of the collection.

Benefits Of Secured Home Improvement Loans

Make your house more welcoming and comfortable to live. A heavenly abode, is not a distant dream any more. Online secured home improvement loans help you attain a complete make over of your house. Decision has to be made whether you want to do it yourself or get an expert help to do it. However if your project seems complicated and you dont have much experience with your home improvements, it is best to leave it to the professionals. A budget includes setting aside an amount of money for any eventualities this includes mistakes, any accidental damage inflicted on your home and soon.

If the home improvement requires repairs that are beyond his expertise or skill, does he have qualified contacts to do this or do you want to start from scratch looking for another person to do this? Think, twice before you decide on any home improvement help.

How does Secured home improvement loan benefit you?

Such a home improvement loan will be secured against your home itself. A lender will make use of your house as a collateral which will assure him of your loan repayments on time. With this, you as a borrower will also be benefited as you will be lent a higher loan amount at lower interest rate in comparison to those who opt for unsecured home improvement loan. A lender would be more than willing to lend you a loan regardless of your poor credits too. Incase, your credit report reflects a bankruptcy, County Court Judgement, defaults on loan, a secured home improvement will help you overcome this stained credit status. With a collateral pledged, a lender will be care free about lending you loan despite of your poor credits, as he has the collateral to bank on, incase you default on your loan repayments.

Simply dont hire the first person who shows up at your door step telling you he noticed that your home needs to be remodeled or repaired. Another pitfall that commonly causes any home improvement project to fail is not having searched efficiently.

What can you do with the help of a secured home improvement loan?

You can carry out the following with the help of home improvement loan:

Painting your home
Smaller or bigger repairs of home
Adding a new room
Redecoration
Adding up a storey
Garden
Creating your kids room
A swimming pool or a basket ball court etc.

Energy-efficient Landscaping Techniques

Landscaping refers to any activity that involves the actual manipulation of an area of land to improve its appearance. It is very beneficial to the home because it provides a pleasing and comfortable ambience and can add to its resale value. According to experts, landscaping can add as much as 14 percent to the resale value of a property and speed its sale by as much as 6 weeks. This is equivalent to earning back 150 percent or more of your landscape investment.

Surprisingly, landscaping has another benefit. Landscaping can help in the conservation of energy. Carefully positioned trees reduce household energy consumption for heating and cooling by up to 25 percent. Homeowners can actually save an average amount between $100 and $250 annually. Here are some ways you could use landscaping to reduce energy consumption.

Plant Trees

Trees can help save energy all year-round. The shade given by trees is sometimes compared to the cooling power of air-conditioners. Place large trees with round, horizontal, and vase-shaped crowns on the south and west sides of your home. Doing so will provide cooling shade in the summer and will not obstruct the low winter sun.

Lawn as Air Conditioner

Make sure your MN landscaping plan includes a good area for your lawn. According to a Mississippi State University study, a healthy front lawn has the same cooling effect as an 8-1/2 ton air conditioning compressor. The plants transpire or evaporate water through the leaves surface to cool themselves and the surrounding area.

Energy-Efficient Pavers

If you’re planning to install pavers Minneapolis residents like for their homes, there are paving stones made of recycled glass called Bottlestone. Bottlestone only takes almost half the energy required to make conventional clay or cement pavers. This material is suitable for a variety of commercial and residential surface applications.

Windbreak

Include a windbreak in your MN landscaping design. A windbreak is made up of one or more rows of trees or shrubs to provide shelter from the wind and to protect the soil from erosion. A windbreak will also help in stabilizing the temperature in your yard by keeping warm air away from your house, thereby lowering energy consumption

Ifloor Types Of Wood Flooring Underlayment

Underlayment is used as a base or substrate to make the top flooring more durable and smooth. There are many types of wood flooring underlayment. iFloor, the first e-commerce discount flooring store website, shares us some information about the types of floor underlayment.

Wood flooring underlayments are categorized into different types. These types differ from each other when it comes to properties and usage. Specific types are used for specific flooring finish to ensure desired results. Here is the most common wood flooring underlayments used:

Oriented Strand Board Often referred to as OSB, it is one of the most natural and economical types of wood flooring underlayment. The materials used are engineered wood products which came from small-diameter and fast growing trees that are easily replaced. This floor underlayment is inexpensive compared to other types. It is easily and directly installed by the use of glue or nails.

Plywood Plywood is another engineered wood product. Cross laminated wood veneers are pressed together and left under a high level of heat to produce ply wood. Plywood can serve as an alternative to Oriented Strand Board. They are both easily installed by gluing or nailing them directly to the subfloor.

Advantech If you want the characteristics of Oriented Strand Board or plywood but want it much durable, you can go with Advantech. This type is similar to the previous ones except that it has a waterproof coating and a unique tongue and grove design. These characteristics prevent the wood from swelling. It is also directly installed by the use of glue or nails.

Concrete This type of wood flooring underlayment is recommended for direct adherence of wood flooring using a eood floor glue. Aside from being a wood flooring underlayment, concrete may also be used as a subfloor.

Felt Paper Also called as Tar Paper, Felt Paper wood floor underlayment is used for wood subfloors with overlapping fashion. It keeps moisture from entering the subfloors which may cause damage. It is also preferred to correct minimal flooring imperfections. This type is best when wood flooring will be nailed into the wood substrate. Felt paper underlayment is usually available in rolls of 15 or 30.

Standard Foam Underlayment This type of wood flooring underlayment is known for its noise-dampening quality. It is a 1/8 inch padding of a synthetic product made of polyethylene foam. Standard foam underlayment is recommended when using floating flooring products or flooring installed without the use of nails or just minimal glue.

Foam and Film Combination Underlayment This type of underlayment is just a standard foam but with moisture preventing capacity. It prevents moisture from getting in contact with the wood subfloor which may damage it by having a barrier. The barrier is made of an additional layer of film.

These are the most common types of wood flooring underlayment. They provide better top flooring look and durability. Get only the best underlayments by visiting iFloor.

Wise Home Improvement Projects Make Houses More Attractive To Buyers

If youve been putting money away to fix up your house, then now is as good of time as any to undertake the home improvement projects youve been dreaming of. With a little bit of savings, time and patience, you can transform your house into your dream home, but its also important to make sure you think about your style choices before you jump right into things. Chances are good that youll eventually want to resell your house, so its important to make sure you think about the tastes and styles that other people will like because you dont want to go overboard on home renovation projects that could actually decrease the value of your house.

Whenever you start thinking about fixing up your house, its important to hire a professional to at least go over your plans with you. The professional can help in many ways, but perhaps most importantly, they can give you educated advice about whether or not future buyers would be attracted to the changes you want to make. Some home repair projects are simple and will always increase the value of a house, but if you change things into a wild design, it will be difficult to find a potential buyer that has the same taste as you. With the help of a design professional, youll be able to create informed plans that help you create the house you want without jeopardizing your ability to resell your house.

Many basic home improvement projects can greatly increase the value of your house, but theyll need to be completed in good taste. For example, putting in wild colored carpet, floors or countertops that dont match would all make many buyers reluctant to consider buying your property in the future. Thats why its so important to use neutral colors that a wide variety of buyers would like and could work with easily. A kitchen renovation tends to be a very safe project you could work on, and one of the best things you can do is replace your old appliances with newer ones. Stainless steel stoves and refrigerators are very popular these days, and putting them in your house may really help sell the deal for buyers. Additionally, these newer appliances are probably much more energy efficient, which will help you keep your electric bills low, and that will be another great selling point in the future.

When completing home renovation projects, its important to think about how they will affect the resale value of your house, but you also have to recognize that the decision is ultimately yours. If you are comfortable investing in some big changes that may not add value to your house, then its okay to go ahead and make your house as wild as you want it to be. If cost is a factor, however, then youll want to work with at least one professional who can advise you about how to invest in projects that you will get a lot of return out of down the road when you go to sell your house.

Landscape Lighting Ideas – Bring Out The Best In Your Landscaping

Many Design Options To Consider

When it comes to illuminating your landscape at night, there are so many different options available that it can be difficult to focus on just the most basic landscape lighting ideas. Indeed, with so many different things that can be lit in the landscape, you may not want to stop with only a few. Here are some landscape lighting ideas that will help you get started on your way towards a beautifully lit landscape.

Don’t Think Two Dimensionally

Most people that are looking to illuminate their landscape are really only thinking in two dimensional directions. You can throw light in any direction in order to enhance the landscaping and to really bring out a lot of dramatic effects in the outdoor environment.

Downlighting

Throwing the light onto the ground from low-voltage landscape lighting is an excellent way to dress up an area, but it is not the only thing that you should really be considering.

Up Lighting

Shining light up onto feature objects in the landscape is an excellent way to really make an impression. For example, arbors, trees or anything else that stands above the general landscaping can usually benefit from a little bit of lighting.

Wall Lighting

Along with that, you might try throwing a splash of light against any architectural features that are in the garden area, including the side of the house. Keep in mind, it is not always necessary for you to stick with white lighting although this is preferred by many people. Various colored light filters can bring out hidden characteristics of lighted object that may not be seen with white light.

Submersible Lighting

Do you have a pool or pond in your landscape area? You should try using some submersible lighting in order to add an interesting feature to this area as well. This is a good place for you to try out different colors and lights, and you can even get rotating lights that will continuously change the look of the underwater environment. It is important for you to make sure that these are installed by a qualified electrician however, and that you have everything hooked up properly to avoid shock hazard.

Focus Your Light

Finally, keep in mind that whenever you are looking for landscape lighting ideas that you do not focus on the source of the light but rather, on what it is illuminating. It is far better if you hide the source of the lighting and do not make it a feature in itself. Simply use it to make the outdoor environment more inviting and to create some dramatic effects by spreading the light around and illuminating feature points within the landscape area. Keep light focused on the areas you want to highlight and you will be pleasantly surprised at the result, and at how many other landscape lighting ideas will come to mind.

Choose The Right Kind Of Timber Flooring For Your Home

Timber flooring has been the choice of many people from a very long time. It gives the home a very different and fresh look. With the passing of time this trend also faded away and today there are different kinds of floorings that are available in different price ranges. Now-a-days people have adopted to put carpets and do tiling on the floor. Recently there has been an increase among the people to go back to the old days and they prefer timber flooring as it looks quite natural than tiling or putting a carpet on the floor.

The timber used for flooring comes in different types. It ranges from oak flooring to bamboo, cedar, northern red, ironwood, jarra, etc. It depends upon you how you select your wood and the kind of look that you want for your home. You can select from the entire range of timbers and get the natural and attractive look for your house.

There are various ways in which the floor made of timber is installed in your home. Firstly, there are the floating floors. In this kind of flooring the oak floor is installed on top of the kind of flooring that is already there, be it concrete or some kind of flooring. An underlay is also done in order to reduce the noise. There are also structural timber flooring in which the professionals install the oak floor or any other and laid it on the joists and bearer of the house. It takes time as the wood takes time t get accustomed to the climate in which it will be laid.

There are also other kinds of flooring such as parquetry flooring, tongue as well as groove floorings and also direct stick. You want to get certain kind of wood flooring but as you shop around and research more you would come out with so many options which will help you in making your home look amazing.

With new ideas and innovation you can now laminate your wooden flooring. You can get water proof timber flooring by laminating your floor. There are various benefits of laminating your timber floor. The most important benefit is that the floor becomes scratch resistant. The floor will not get faded with repetitive cleaning process. The installation process is very easy as they are symmetrical shape. They are also replaceable and durable.

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Aqua Step Laminate Flooring

Aqua Step laminate flooring is the innovative flooring product that offers a 100% waterproof guarantee. Aquastep have developed this great product to appeal to bathroom and kitchen floors, which are susceptible to water leaks and spillages, which puts Aqua Step as a cut amongst the rest in regards to the laminate flooring market.
Aqua-Step, with its complete range of 100% water-resistant flooring, provides you years of comfort and a worry-free future. Aqua-Step is perfectly resistant against floods, moisture or condensation. It is suitable for kitchens, bathrooms, laundries, hallways, cellars, … Aqua-Step is made of high quality synthetic resins. It contains no wood components. Aqua-Step has 0% swelling in all atmospheric circumstances. Aqua-Step is also recommended for project applications such as fitness rooms, restaurants, shops, … as it meets all necessary technical specifications.
Aqua-Step can be cleaned with water and soap which results in an extremely hygienic floor. The floor stays bacteria free and is completely mould resistant (ideal for allergy sufferers). The high density surface coating and the perfect waterproof seams prevent dirt from penetrating the floor.
Aqua-Step is 30% more sound absorbing than traditional wood laminate. Moreover, Aqua-Step adapts itself to the surrounding temperature in an exceptional manner which makes it feel comfortably warm and cosy.
Inspired by nature, Aqua-Step waterproof flooring specialists transferred the honeycomb structure to a completely new flooring concept: a hollow floor structure that absorbs sound, conducts floorheating and outperforms on product strength. The core of the board is made of a high quality synthetic resin in combination with a honeycomb structure and results in an IC3 strength classification, the highest rating in its category. It withstands heavy loads and falling of objects.
The wear-resistance of AC4 is guaranteed by the wear resistant surface in combination with the hard core. The flooring is suitable for heavy domestic use and general commercial use like fitness and wellness centra, restaurants, shops, offices…
Aqua-Step fits quickly and easily thanks to a special co-extruded joint in combination with the integrated world famous patented Uniclic locking system, the best in its category. The result is a floor with perfect waterproof seams. This very flexible installation system even allows you to re-install your floor several times.
With Aqua-Step you can cover large surfaces up to 900 m2 (30 m x 30 m), without the use of intermediate expansion profiles. From bathroom to sleeping room, from kitchen to living room… resulting in an aesthetical enhancement and enlarging your room optically. Thanks to this easy and fast installation no extra accessories are required.
So Aqua-Step really is the best choice for flooring as it is 100% waterproof, easy to lay, extra strong, sound absorbing, easily cleaned and extremely hard wearing.