Monthly Archives: May 2017

5 Tips to Help You Create the Perfect Space Around Your Pool or Spa

 

Choosing the layout and design for your backyard should not be taken lightly, especially when you have an intended purpose for the space. Whether you’re looking to create a space that is simply usable, one that’s party-ready, or one that’s aesthetically pleasing (or perhaps one that fits all of these requirements), these 5 backyard design tips will help you create the outdoor space you’ve always wanted.

 

1. Incorporate a Dining Area

No backyard design is complete without an area for eating. Whether you are looking for small backyard ideas, such as a bistro set, or something larger to accommodate all of your friends, a table and chair set is a must. Choose something comfortable people will be fine sitting around for the recommended 30 minutes before re-entering the pool.  

 

2. Have a Place to Lounge

When you have a built-in pool, you really must have a place for people to lounge poolside, whether it’s a set of chaise loungers or a comfortable set of chairs. Having chairs around your pool gives your kids a place to lay their towels to dry while they swim, and you a place to sit while you watch them. Choose something neutral to maintain a natural outdoor feel, or use a more beige seating area as an opportunity to add an extra punch of color to your yard.

 

3. Add a Fire Pit

Fire pits are a welcome addition to any backyard when you want to keep the party going long after the sun goes down. Whether you desire to use your outdoor patio as a place for making s’mores, or are hoping to add an artistic element to your garden landscaping, adding a fire pit will give that extra bit of warmth, lighting, and ambiance you need to extend your backyard’s usability even after summer’s over.

 

4. Keep It Zen

If your backyard pool ideas include turning your space into an outdoor oasis, keeping things Zen is a must. Choose neutral colors and modern seating designs to create a calm and soothing atmosphere. Shoot for a minimalist design with natural design elements like flowering plants and pebbled pathways.

 

5. Make It Party-Friendly

Having a pool means your house will inevitably become the go-to party house, so why not embrace that idea? Make sure you have ample seating to accommodate guests, create seating areas where friends and family can mingle, and choose furniture pieces that are both comfortable and welcoming. When the layout is playful and provides ample opportunities to sit, relax, and enjoy conversation, your guests will inevitably stick around for the entire party.

 

Make Your Backyard Fun!

Each of these 5 pool patio ideas, alone or together, will help you create a backyard that not only revolves around your pool or spa, but is ready for quiet nights sitting by the fire pit, or parties with friends and family. With the right furniture and design, you can achieve the yard you’re hoping for.

10 Ways to Upgrade Your Living Room

Is your living room a combination of mended pieces passed down from your parents or leftovers from your college days? If so, it may be time to reconsider a makeover. Kick that hand-me-down, brown and orange floral print couch to the curb and re-design your perfect living space to match your trendy, adult tastes with these living room ideas.

 

1. Identify Purpose

Identify the purpose of your living room space. Do you intend to host multiple guests? Additional comfortable seating is a must. Do the kids mostly use this area? Choose furniture pieces that are safe and sturdy. Deciding how you want to use this space will help you make specific transformations to fit the needs of your family.

 

2. Lighten Up

Remove dark paneling, paint, and trim to lighten and open up the room. Darkness can cause your living room to seem small and dingy. Painting over dark surfaces or removing dark fixtures not only make your room seem bigger, but can create an airy freshness to the environment.

 

3. Organize Seating

Draw seating closer together to make the room warmer. For small living room ideas, ditch the bulky loveseat and choose an L-shaped couch for ample seating. Add a streamlined accent chair and lightweight coffee table to increase functionality while using minimal floor space.

 

4. Update

Updating decor and furniture can be a great way to transform your living space. Select some modern furniture and pair it with funky fixtures for a more urban look. Tear down or replace old wallpaper with a more contemporary patterned wallpaper. Coffered ceiling treatments can offer a blend of old sophistication and modern design. Make old sofas look brand new with fresh linen covers.

 

5. Pair Colors

The quickest way to revamp your living room is with a splash of color. Experiment with color palettes that bring in a mix of shades that can be paired with your furniture and accessories. Deep wall colors can be accented with lighter solids and bright patterns. Can’t paint? Keep your walls tepid and spice up the room with daring furniture color choices.

 

6. Embrace Art

Spruce up your walls with interesting art. Turn simple things like game boards and old maps into works of art when framing them on your wall. Make your own art by turning a wall in your home into a chalkboard or dry-erase board for guests to contribute to your design.

 

7. Add Statement Pieces

Make a focal wall with reclaimed wood for a rugged, trendy look. Don’t overload bookcases; use them to display various statement pieces. Installing vintage fixtures like Edison lighting can create a hip, industrial type feeling to your living room.

 

8. Accessorize

Accessorize with stylish and frugal home decor ideas like refurbishing antiques or sprucing up dollar store finds. Cover naked windows with treatments and curtains containing bold patterns. Decorative mirrors do double duty by being beautiful art pieces while making small spaces look larger. Add funky throws and pillows to bland couches to maximize style without sacrificing comfort.

 

9. Don’t Forget Floors

Save money and add charm by refinishing hardwood floors. Replace tattered and stained carpet with an alternative flooring like bamboo, concrete, cork, or wood-look tile to create a clean surface. Moroccan Berber rugs and rugs with geometric designs can add a lot of depth to your living room area.

 

10. Go Techy

A modern transformation is not complete without technology upgrades. Improve your living room’s look and efficiency with smart solutions like remote control shades, intelligent thermostats, and app-controlled lighting and appliances. Improve air quality and grow your own herbs with a Smartpot.

Donate your old dorm furniture to a new college student, and redo your living room with stylish pieces for an updated trendy look.

Backyard Movie Night: How To Create Your Ultimate Outdoor Space

 

There is something magical about sitting under the stars to watch a movie together as a family. And setting up an outdoor movie screen is easier than you might think! You don’t need a lot to create a great setup. With a few supplies, most of which you already have on hand, you’ll be ready to host a movie night in your own backyard.

You’ll need:

  • King- or queen-sized white sheets
  • Projector
  • Speakers
  • Clothespins
  • Comfortable outdoor patio furniture (maybe even a fire table)
  • Pillows and blankets (some you wouldn’t mind if they got a little dirty)

A simple white sheet works beautifully as a movie screen, and you can double them up for better picture quality. If you have a clothesline, simply drape the sheets over it, secure them with some clothespins, and anchor the bottom with bricks or rocks to hold it in place in case of a breeze. If you don’t have a clothesline, string some rope between two trees, or deck posts, or something else have on hand. You might want to iron the sheets first to get rid of any creases.

There are more higher-quality outdoor screen ideas you can look into, but sheets are easy to store, you probably already have them on hand, and the picture is still decent.

The projector will be one of your bigger investments if you don’t already have one, but you can usually snag one for under $200. As for sound, some external computer speakers will usually do the job just fine. Set it all up on a tripod, or perhaps a sturdy nightstand if you don’t have one, and you’re good to go.

If you need ideas for the best outdoor movies, here’s a list of some great classics like The Goonies, to Ghostbusters, to Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.

Don’t forget comfy seating

Keep things cozy by arranging your patio furniture around the movie screen. If you’re in the market for some patio furniture, an outdoor movie night is a perfect opportunity to showcase your new additions. People often think only of price, but there are many different aspects to consider when you’re looking for outdoor furniture, such as the size and shape of your yard, the climate where you live, and how much use it will see. You also want to be sure to stock up on some comfy and durable cushions for the furniture you land on.

For kids or just extra seating in general, throw some blankets and pillows on the ground in front of the patio furniture.

Add some sparkle

Are you hosting a party and want to snaz it up a bit? Consider hanging twinkle lights from trees, bushes, and porch/patio railings. They are great for turning an ordinary space into a fun, enchanting atmosphere. If kids are involved, you could set up a snack stand. Make the sign with a small decorative chalkboard, and set out bowls of candy, popcorn, and other typical movie treats. For drinks, an outdoor flower box is a fun idea for holding soda pop and water bottles. Retro soda (in the glass bottles) and paper straws are always fun.

Now sit back and enjoy the show!

Know When to Fold Up Those Patio Chairs & Choose A More Modern Outdoor Furniture Set

Spring cleaning means prepping your outdoor space for entertaining which can entail a thorough analysis of your current outdoor furniture. Will your current patio set last another scorching season with a little TLC and DIY, or is it time to upgrade to more modern outdoor furniture? Check out these tips to determine whether some repairs will do the trick or if it is time to purchase new patio furniture.

Normal Wear and Tear

Even the best outdoor furniture is bound to show signs of normal wear and tear from being exposed to the harsh elements and frequent use. Instances of average aging and deterioration can often be repaired with a little elbow grease which is both budget-friendly and helps your furniture withstand another summer. Some common wear and tear includes:

  • Dirt & Debris. It is common for dirt and leaves to accumulate on furniture while exposed. A quick sweep with a soft-bristled brush or a good vacuum can eliminate debris.
  • Stains. Water, mud, and even food spills can leave ugly stains on patio chair cushions. Use a detergent, dishwashing liquid solution, or even invest in an outdoor furniture cleaner to gently scrub out stains and pat dry. Avoid harsh chemicals and consult the manufacturer’s care labels before cleaning.
  • Mold. Fabrics can accumulate mold, especially in very moist climates. Always wear gloves to sand or scrub out the mold and dispose of used supplies.
  • Chipping Paint. No need to throw out furniture losing its color, make it brand new furniture with a coat of spray paint. If you’re tired of the furniture or if it’s outdated, now is the time to invest in a more modern outdoor furniture set which is certain to enhance and revitalize your outdoor space.
  • Faded and Torn Fabric. Solar rays can fade fabric and years of breakdown can lead to holes and tears. Reupholstering old chairs with new fabric is made simple with new fabric and a staple gun.  

Taking care to preserve and protect your furniture every year will prevent initial damage and expand the life of your furniture.

When it is Time to Replace

Though the internet offers a plethora of videos and solutions for fixing damaged furniture, sometimes it is beyond repair. Some aspects to be aware of:

  • Safety Hazards. When broken mechanisms, sharp metal edges, and splinter-laden areas are too much to repair, it is time to ditch the furniture. Safety should be a priority for you, your family, and your guests.
  • Quality.  Cheap sets from big-box stores that need repairing, which happens often due to their mediocre quality, may not be worth the time and effort the repairs required.
  • Cost of Repairs. When the cost of restoring your patio set costs close to or more than a new set, it is time to let it go and invest in a new set.

Best Time to Purchase Patio Furniture

When it comes time to upgrade worn out furniture, now is the time to update your furniture. Create an outdoor space which is inviting and fun, space where you want to hang out and entertain guests in.

Remember whether you’re looking to start designing your outdoor space or just wanting to upgrade your patio, investing in quality materials and taking measures to protect your furniture from the elements can help your set avoid damage and last longer.