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Choosing the Best Desk Lamp

Sometimes, the work space you’ve created to do your computer work needs a little extra help when it comes to lighting. Not everyone can dedicate an entire room to become a formal and well lit office, especially if one is renting an apartment or is trying to combine an office area with a living room. As people downsize across the US, it is common now-a-days to use one room for two functions. But then how does one adequately light certain areas of the room and maintain an ambient environment for the whole room? Lets look at the difference between task lamps and table lamps for a moment, to help you in choosing the best desk lamp.

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Desk lighting may not seem an important factor initially, but try working with insufficient light and it will become quickly clear that having the proper lighting is essential. Having a well lit space is not only for carrying out tasks at hand – but for general health as well. When your area is too dark, you may lean forward too much for extended periods of time, placing strain on the neck, back and even the eyes.

Most people will take a long time to select just the right desk chair – because they know that they will be sitting for possibly hours at a time. Proper back support, adjustability and the right size chair, suddenly become of paramount concern. But people tend to skimp on the lighting and consequently, can suffer physically as well. What does one do when the general room lights are not enough?

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What size is your desk area? Is there room to place a lamp on a desk? Might a floor task lamp work better for the work area? Maybe your area double serves as a creative area for crafting where you need a brighter light source for doing detailed work. Will you need to move your light around on occasion or would you prefer one that clamps to your desktop?

Think about task light vs lamp light….

Lamps are generally created as accent lighting, to be used on side tables in bedrooms or living rooms. They tend to give off a softer glow than task lights, which are crafted to provide a stronger beam of light to a small area; specifically for reading or doing detail work. Standard lamps tend to have thicker shades which help to mask the eye from the bright bulb. They tend to be built from one non-flexible and decorative center stand, which can lend creative flair in terms of the color, or styling of both the fixture and the shade. However, lamps don’t offer as many options as task lights do.

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Think about bulb type….

Halogen lights are energy-efficient and excellent as task lights. They have a tungsten filament, which gets hot and emits a great deal of visible light, whereas a normal bulb is not as efficient. However, halogens are twice as hot as standard bulbs. When outfitted with more delicate or fringed shades, it’s not always wisest to use halogen bulbs on standard lamps. Fluorescent lights are very efficient but tend to be more expensive than incandescent bulbs. Full spectrum bulbs emulate natural sunlight and are incredibly well-suited to task lighting applications. LED’s run cooler than halogens and offer another option for creating bright light to a small area.

Think adjust-ability….

Adjustable task lamps can have variable height settings so that you can control whether the light is sharper or more diffused. Therefore, some are crafted with flexible necks so that you can bend the light according to your needs. Some have dimmers that offer three levels of brightness. In any event, you want to be able to control the brightness of your work area, without having to squint from the bulb that’s emitting the light.

It costs very little to re-design a work space area and outfit it with the correct lighting. Sometimes all it takes is one extra, well placed fixture. Sometimes adding other lights to the area, such as a low hung pendant or a wall sconce in conjunction with a task light will suffice. So long as you feel comfortable and well supported by the light you need sitting at your workspace, almost any combination will do. Don’t be afraid to experiment over a period of a month or so, moving the fixtures you’ve purchased around to get them in just the right position!

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All About Wall Mount Lighting

One of the most difficult aspects of DYI home décor projects for home owners is in figuring out the proper lighting for each room. Every room in the home will have its specific needs and aside from having multiple bedrooms, (where one could repeat a pattern for installing lighting), almost every room requires a little pre-thought before ‘fixture purchasing’.

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There are multiple considerations that can overwhelm DYIers and  often, those saddled with managing the room’s lighting task, if not a professional lighting expert; they tend to give up in frustration mid-way through a project. Consequently, a greatly furnished room may dim in comparison to its poor lighting plan. So how does one go about planning to adequately and properly light a room?

It might be helpful to first separate oneself from the trend that everyone follows and think more about if the room lighting will be task related or will be used more to create a certain ambience or mood. The popular trend these days leans toward installing dimmable, recessed down lights everywhere. It’s easy to see why there is a large scale movement to follow the trend. Recessed cans lighten up a room from above, while simultaneously removing the décor nightmare of having to figuring out just where to appropriately place the table and floor lamps.

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Sea Gull Lighting

When household rooms are very small, the real estate is precious and ceiling lights are the most efficient way to eliminate the limited-room-to-store-things issue. People naturally think that by laying out two general light lines in a ceiling will cover the rooms lighting needs. But most people are not experts in lighting, and therefore they often make poor choices when selecting canned lighting. Perhaps they chose an inexpensive series, which can mean less sufficient light output. Or they find that after installation, that while the center of the room is lit, strangely, the walls are all dark. Recessed lighting has its merits. But more often than not, they require a little help from their side pals – mainly, wall sconces. When it comes to some rooms, some just may require wall mount lighting.

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Crystorama

In a bathroom, wall fixtures are almost necessary. Down lights alone will cast shadows onto the sides of the face, which makes putting on makeup a bit of a tricky task. Wall sconces will minimize shadows from overhead. They can even out the walls in a large, high ceiling living room where recessed cans have been installed. Placing recessed cans too high up can cause a dark space in the center of the room, especially when they are not strong enough to stream light down far enough into the room. In a kitchen, where food preparation also requires bright light, overhead cans become almost the accessory, whereas task and accent lights are the true necessities.

Adding to the confusion, are the shifts and changes in the actual bulb industry. The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 required most screw-in light bulbs to use 27 percent less energy by 2014. LED’s, CFL’s and some halogens began replacing incandescents. But then suddenly everyone had to begin to understand Lumens, Kelvin’s and the CRI (Color rendering index). Things used to be so simple.

What’s a homeowner to do? It won’t hurt to first just go online and look up e-commerce lighting stores. Extract ideas from images you see on Houzz. Search the top brand manufacturers and view their webpages. Most of them have inspiration galleries. Look at the way designers promote their design skills on their websites. Just where do they tend to place the lighting in a room? If you notice, many of them incorporate several lighting sources per room. Try to find a room image online similar to the room you want to light. Use the extensive visual galleries to gather your ideas. Take a look at not only the layout of the ceiling lights, but where the accent and wall lighting is as well. Look to see how the light streams from each fixture. One can take a lot of great ideas just from pictures alone. Most importantly, consider the benefits of a wall sconce. They remain on the wall, up off the floor. They provide all the side lighting you’ll need. They come in thousands of styles and colors. They can be dimmable. And by adding in a few wall lights, you can have greater control over your room lighting, by having separate controls.

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Crystal Chandelier Cleaning Tips

Remember the day you installed that beautiful foyer chandelier and how excited you were to step back and take in the exquisite view? It cost a pretty penny but it was worth it because you knew you’d have it for many years to come. And it changed the entire look of your entrance way – made the doorway area much more inviting and appealing to arriving guests. Maybe you purchased a stunning dining chandelier and have spent many months having family meals under it’s showering light.

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Crystorama Chandeliers

But months later you’ve noticed something has changed. The fixture doesn’t dazzle you as much as it originally did. At first you can’t figure it out. Was it just your excitement over having something brand new that overrode the fact that it wasn’t as beautiful as you initially thought? It still looks clean on inspection, but somehow it’s…well, it’s just duller! It doesn’t sparkle like it once did. Something has happened to the luster of the crystals and now it’s really noticeable… maybe not to your invited guests… but to YOU! What happened? How did it loose it’s initial shine? Can something be done to get back it’s initial sparkle? The answer is yes! Here are some easy crystal cleaning tips to regain that original shine:

Though your fixture does not appear caked in dust and dirt, every home has floating air particles that carry elements of debris. You’ll usually recognize it as ‘cooking grime’ in the kitchen, when you find yourself cleaning the greasy film off of your appliances. That grease comes from cooking elements (oils that precipitate out from steam), which settle often on the range hood. But in a dining room or a foyer, it’s not grease that is the culprit; but actually very fine specks of general house dust that first begin to adhere to the crystals. Outside debris from nature might even be partially to blame when a foyer light is constantly exposed to the outside elements via the doorway. Over time, the crystals accumulate a light film of this microscopic debris, clouding the original luster of the crystal teardrops. There is a relatively easy way to regain that sparkle – without having to separate and scrub each crystal. You may have to pull out the ladder if it is hanging in a foyer, but the rules for cleaning are the same whether it is located in a dining room, a bedroom or a foyer.

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Here’s the things you will need:

1 large plastic sheet (for covering tables or floors)
1 roll of 1 inch masking tape
1 box of plastic baggies
1 bottle of apple cider vinegar
1 empty spray bottle
1 cup of  water

To be completely safe, turn off the power where you will be working, at the breaker box. Spread directly below the chandelier, the plastic cloth; to protect a table, furniture or just to keep your floor area clean, if it is a foyer fixture you are cleaning. Cover all the candelabra light sticks with a plastic baggie. Wrap the baggie around the candlestick, and secure the plastic at the bottom of each candlestick lightly with a piece of tape. (Do not wrap the tape so tightly around the stick that you can’t later easily remove it). This will protect the sticks and bulbs from getting wet. Then, add in to the one cup of water, one additional cup of apple cider vinegar and pour the mixture (equal parts) of both into the spray bottle. Lightly spray the entire chandelier, concentrating more on the dangling crystals which hang below the candlesticks. Give the chandelier a good rain bath, lightly saturating the crystals with the vinegar-water mixture. For full coverage, you should move all the way around the chandelier, spraying as you go, and moving the ladder to do so if you must. Try not to twist the chandelier. If it is a relatively new chandelier, there is no need to wipe the crystals. Just let it air dry. When it dries, you will see that the crystals now appear as clear and sparkly as the day you bought it.

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Besa Lighting

If you haven’t cleaned your chandelier for a year or so, you may need to use a lightly sudsy washcloth to gently rub each crystal teardrop. Over time, grime can build up and make it tougher to get the crystals clean. After gently rubbing them, respray them with the vinegar mixture. (A second option would be to re-wet the chandelier with a second or third dose of the apple cider mixture to see if repeated sprays help dissolve the grime film.)

When fully dry, remove the tape and baggies and restore power. There was no scrubbing. There was no painful disassembling of each individual crystal. There was no arm sore chore of re-hanging the separated but now-clean crystals. All you really did was safely give your chandelier a gentle rain bath. The apple cider vinegar did the actual work for you. Recommended cleanings of this type are three to four times a year. If you wish to stretch out your cleanings to only once or twice a year, then purchase a fluffy dusting stick and lightly dust every month. This will help to keep all of your chandeliers as bright and beautiful as the day you bought them!

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Create a Lush Landscape with Light

You’ve driven by them hundreds of times and they’ve always caught your eye. They are those homes in the neighborhood that just scream ‘cut above the rest’. The entire mantle of curbside grass is a deep, even-toned and lustrous green. The cement sidewalk area is crystal clean, immaculately trimmed and there are no telltale cracks of neglect. A few floral beds are spaciously and appropriately placed. The light fixtures seem perfectly placed no matter where you look. And interestingly enough; it makes no difference whether you drive by during the day or the night. The property is beautiful no matter what time you pass by or what angle of view you take in. In fact at night, the location gleams with a warmth so inviting, you simply want to pull over and go meet the people who live there.

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Just what constitutes the difference between generally well kept lawns and those which stand out as stellar icons of neighborhood beauty? What is that one element of stardom that makes that property dazzle so brightly over all others? Sometimes what the eye sees, the eye doesn’t really see at all. Sometimes the illusion of beauty is created from that which can’t be easily detected.

Take landscape lighting for instance. Much of what the eye visually sees is light emitting from hidden fixtures embedded into side walls or in the ground.  Well contoured bushes are illuminated from side posts and lanterns. A singular statue might be illuminated from the ground up, casting interesting dimensions not seen during the day.

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Maxim Bahama Collection

Anyone can create a lush landscape with light, and it does not necessarily mean that to do so requires extensive planning or the hiring of professionals. Sometimes, just taking some time to review what is on your property with a small sketchbook in hand, can help to create a wondrous dream-scape before it actualizes. Sometimes, it’s not all about figuring out transformers and counting and voltage requirements. One can start, simply with an artist’s eye. What specifically needs light? Where would you like extra light? What specific parts of your yard would you like to highlight and why?

With a little sketchbook planning, and a little online fixture shopping, you can gain mastery over your landscape with just a few easy to install outdoor fixtures. Outdoor lighting is not the great mystery everyone thinks it is. To think like an artist, one must begin to see in a different way. Artists take in their entire environment before they begin a painting. They choose what they want as a focal point and build a painting around it. Begin by making note of your existing lights. Are they properly placed on the building? Are they ready for replacement? Do they need supportive light and if so, where could you place on the building, that additional support light?

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Feiss Tove Collection

Visually inspect the surrounding trees and shrubs. Are there any exiting garden decorations and could they use some illumination? Decide whether you want these items to reflect or absorb light. Estimate loosely, the height of your foliage. Do you have an illuminated walkway anywhere on the property? If not, perhaps it’s time to consider lighting up the walk. Transformers are not always needed. There is a huge array of solar path lights now available on the market. It is the easiest landscape lighting to install as there are no cords to be hidden, nor transformers to rig up. With careful positioning, solar fixtures can be an instant additional to any lawn-scape. Just one string of path lighting can reflect immeasurable change to the overall look of the property.

Sometimes it pays to take a few moments to dream, to think and to plan. It’s not hard. It can be fun. And part of the beauty of landscape lighting is that you can do it in bits and pieces – all throughout the summer season. Dressing up your property should be an activity of love. We all know how good it feels to start an project you know you can finish in a short amount of time. We all know the satisfaction of completing a task. So go fixture by fixture. Sometimes, that’s all it takes to make great change.

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The Beauty of Portable Lamps

As information technology has changed the way we live; so too have we adopted the idea of modernizing everything electronically in this world, including all aspects of home decor. Our cars and phones speak to us. Our computers and TV’s captivate us mentally and emotionally. Our homes are wired for remote controls or are completely wireless. Amidst the permanence of such internal wiring, e.g. track and recessed lights, in our technological haze, we’ve actually limited our personal freedom by taking the joy out of an occasional and on-the-spot room re-design.

For those who absolutely MUST move the furniture around the room once every other month – dealing with immovable lighting can sometimes limit how you can rearrange that room. If you install a gorgeous foyer chandelier for example, chances are you won’t replace it for over a decade at least. What if you choose to redecorate in five years and have decided that you’d now like wall mount lighting? Perhaps you’ve installed two pricey entertainment room chandeliers for over the pool table/bar area, when it suddenly dawned on you after installation,  that you should have thought the room out a little better and gone for a couple of lighted ceiling fans instead?

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Once made permanent,  you can’t move your ceiling lighting about. The beauty of portable lamps, such as table and floor lamps, is that you have the ability to easily shift the color and ambiance of any room, by changing the lighting angles and bulbs within your rooms’ portable light sources. It’s not so fun to get up on a ladder to change out twelve ceiling bulbs, but a table lamp bulb change is a breeze.

Colored light bulbs are another creative option that only portable lamps can offer; especially for those occasions where you desire to create a particular mood or room ambience. In fact, colored lights are one of the easiest ways to decorate a home for the holidays and can create quite a dramatic effect by using several of them in one room. Blue bulbs will create a cool and calm effect whereas red and orange bulbs are known for creating an atmosphere of warmth and comfort. Colored light bulbs are very affordable and can even be used outdoors.

If you’re not into using colored bulbs, knowing just a little bit about bulb types can help to create a special effect for a room. For instance, frosted or pearlized bulbs tend to provide softer, more shadow-free light. These bulbs work best when the lamp shade is of a light or very pale color. In this case, you can use the maximum wattage available and not fear too much brightness.  It’s best to always use energy-saving bulbs in the house, in rooms such as the living room, kitchen and bedroom; whereas it’s wiser to use the more gray-white light of fluorescent bulbs for the basement, garage or utility rooms.

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Most portable lamps are constructed with a convenient cord and plug attachment, which allows the fixture to be ready for use without having the need of an electrician for installation. They are generally inexpensive to purchase, easily replaced and can be moved frequently to and from any room in the house. Even more exciting for those who just can’t stop fiddling with a room’s decor; portable lamps allow for easy shade changes. Changing out just a few lamp shades can change the entire look of the room – sans the cost of major re-decorating! A few pillow changes, curtain changes and lampshade changes can completely renew a stale environment and will go a long way toward brightening anyone’s day.

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Locations You’ll Pay the Most in Energy Bills

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Master Bedroom Must-Have’s

According to the real estate industry, kitchens and bathrooms are considered the most valuable rooms in a home. However, a bedroom should be also be considered one of the best rooms in the house simply due to the fact that it is the one room where your human body regenerates itself each night; so that it can function in life every day. It’s funny how we can value eating and other human functions, and not place our sleep rooms at the same priority level. The truth is, no one would function in life without sleep. Therefore, creating the space where your body rests should automatically be a top area of focus, even if not valued in real estate terms. Here are some special tips when considering master bedroom must-haves.

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Manhattan Comfort 34184 Eldridge Collection

Start with the Right Wall Color for YOU:

A bedroom needs to be the most calmly decorated room in the house. Typically, there should be one main, neutral theme color chosen, with a variable of two accent colors and no more. The neutrality of a wall color enables you to change out décor items seasonally, without color conflict issues. But if you absolutely have a favorite color that completely calms you and makes you feel good all the time, and it’s not a neutral color, this is okay too.  It would still be a good choice because it is a color you naturally and innately resonate with. Try painting with an eco friendly, non-toxic paint- as it’s much safer for your resting, breathing, and absorbing body.

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What Touches Body Must be Sacred!

Add organic blanket and pillow patterns that whisper to your soul, and ‘feel’ good to the touch.  Those symbolic characters that influenced and comforted you as a child will work on your adult being as well. Simply change out those icons to a more mature version of them. A stuffed elephant can now be an elegant elephant statue. A love of flowers can be transformed into a beautiful floral accent blanket, lampshade or into a vase of real flowers. If you are a nature king or queen – anything made of organic materials will appeal to you. Those décor items that speak to your own divine essence need to be around you as you sleep.

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It’s important to not only choose a mattress that embraces and supports your body, but to make sure that the bed also fits the room it sits in. Sometimes, a king size bed may seem really grand and appealing, but it will only aggravate you if you are constantly stubbing a toe on a post because the bed size is too big for the room, leaving you no maneuver room in the mornings. Use a smaller size bed to create a larger and more spacious room environment. Feeling constantly cramped or cornered in your own room, can cause a body to automatically experience ‘unconscious ‘stress, which fosters its own odd effects.

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View all Wardrobe Units

Limit Your Clothes to 1 Closet
The absolute truth is that none of us need a huge wardrobe to exist smartly or fashionably in this world. Your entire wardrobe should fit into one closet, and if you can actually store a dresser in your closet – leaving only the bed and an end table or two in the room – this arrangement would be ideal. When you have fewer clothes to wash, there is less to hang and less to ‘put away’ each week. Clear your closets of only what you regularly wear. When you purchase something new, give something away. Most people don’t think of their closets when they think about creating their sanctuary, but keeping a closet clean will also help you feel more in control of your life…and that’s relaxing in and of itself.
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Pets Nurture Automatically

Pets who adorn you with love and affection the moment you step through the door should be allowed passage to your dream space. If you can’t share your bed with a beloved feline or canine, the next step is to get them a bed of their own, and train them to use it. That way they can be close to you – in a way that doesn’t disturb your need to commandeer the whole bed!

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Elegant Lighting 1201D32PN

Lighting Makes or Breaks a Room

Most people don’t think about lighting, but how and where you light a room can make all the difference between creating a cozy retreat or a harsh one.  Where will the lighting be placed? Will you use a chandelier? Do you desire wall sconces or table lamps? Do you want dimmable lighting? Do you want cool or warm lighting? Would you like an overhead fan, with a light kit? Do you need a wall switch or do you prefer to use remote controls? These things should be thought out in advance, so that when one does make a fixture purchase, especially if it is an online purchase, one can inquire as to specific features that a chosen product may possess – before making that purchase….to avoid return hassles.

A bedroom should be one’s most coveted sanctuary. Adding a few creature comforts to this room need not be an expensive venture. Sometimes just a few well placed, cherished items can not only bring great comfort on an emotional level, but they can also reflect a life well lived.

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Unique Ways to Display Books

Despite the internet movement to all things digital, we understand that it’s hard to part with some of those favorite old books and cd’s that have become an intrinsic part of one’s lifetime memories – especially when some date back to childhood days. Sometimes, outdated items are just that; little reminders of the things that have deeply touched us during the course of our lives. The question then becomes – how do we keep them in environmental sight for emotional comfort’s sake when we are now socially encouraged to dump all unnecessary stuff and – simplify?

A few keepsakes are to be cherished because that’s exactly what they are – little personal treasures! When dealing with small household rooms, one of the MOST important things to keep in mind when desiring to feature them as part of the decor; is to find unique ways to display books. If you have a small bookshelf and a lot of books, it doesn’t mean that you need to jam the shelves, so to speak. In fact, doing just the opposite will help keep you personally organized. Using fewer items on the shelves will also help to keep your smaller room from appearing junk-filled.

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1.    Select just a small group of just your favorite books. Place small groupings of books on random shelves, either by subject matter or by size. Allow some to stand and some to remain horizontally stacked. If you group the books by their size, have differing sizes stacked on varying shelves. Consider storing the remainder of your books in a ‘concealing cabinet’. Every month or so, switch out the shelf books with a new group of the stored books, and you’ll have an instant change of decor without having to completely redecorate. Occasionally switching out your books enables you to reconnect with those things which are stored away.

2.    Randomly, angle a horizontal stack of books in one corner of a shelf, so that the ends of each book touch the back wall and a side wall. Then move them out an inch or so from both walls. This angled effect is unusual and helps to create more exciting visuals, because not all books have been stacked to the standard rectangle area.

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3.    Place a see through and colorful glass vase or globe next to a set of stacked books to create a bright pop of color. The clear colored glass allows the human eye to see through the ‘space’ of the rectangle shelf area, creating a ‘sense’ of more shelf room than there really is. The glass globe or vase should be of a complimentary accent color. Let’s say your room walls are a light gray and your favorite colors are teal and orange. Complimenting the room with an area rug, pillows or lampshade with these colors in mind, can be enhanced by colored glass on a shelf – in a similar tone or color. This will help to bring the room together.

4.    Place the heaviest books you have on a bottom shelf to help balance the room. Only stack a few at a time.

5.    Try leaning just a few favorite books in small sections of a bookshelf.

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6.    Books do not always have to be the predominant item on a shelf! Sometimes, using a stack of books as an accessory to a larger item – such as a side or coffee table, trunk or jewelry box, helps to balance out other display items.

7.    Books do not always have to be stacked on a conventional book shelf. Try stacking them in furniture not originally designed to be a bookshelf!

8.    Sometimes two rooms coexist with one another where there is not enough room for a full wall. In apartments for instance, often a dining area is combined with a living area. To help create more privacy for each area, try implementing a see-through bookshelf, using the books and items stored on the shelf as a visually beautiful room divider.

All of the images above reflect simplicity in room design, but also allow for memorable keepsakes to be displayed and that is after all – what a home is all about!

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De-Clutter Tips for Incognito Hoarders

No one who hoards lots of things wants to admit that they’re actually hoarding. The term ‘collector’ seems a favored label, as collecting ‘specific types of things’ tends to  boost hoarding to an acceptable, almost noble hobby activity. Regardless of what it might be officially termed, when there’s too much stuff in a house – there’s simply too much stuff! Most hoarders and collectors have an emotional attachment to their goods. We all need emotional connections in this world – no matter how we foster those connections. However, too much collecting can ultimately hamper the human experience and cause additional life stress. Here are a few de-clutter tips for those who may in fact, be incognito hoarders….(those who may never admit it, but are… guilty, guilty, guilty)!

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Need a New bed?

Let’s take a common hoarding spot – the bedroom. Here’s one really original way of clearing it!

1.    Grab a handful of large black (30 gal.) garbage bags, a fat black marker and one roll of 2″ masking tape. (At least 7 black bags – one for each wall and 3 for the closet).

2.    Stand in the center of the room and face one wall. Open one black bag and pull off of the shelves, dressers and window sills on that wall you’re facing – anything and everything you are not using every single day (or at least once a month) and place it in the bag. It matters not if different kinds of things get jumbled up in the bag. Just do it.

3. As you tie up the first bag, secure a masking tape sized label on the bag and write generically, what you tossed in the bag. (This is for later reference if you need to find something fast). You don’t have to label everything that goes in the bag – just certain things that you think you might want to find later.

4.    For anything strewn about – if you are still using it, throw it on the bed. You’ll sort that later. Do the black bag collection step for all four walls, and that includes items that are at your feet or strewn about the floor.

5.    After you finish each wall, twisty tie the black bag, label each bag, and then set all four bags in one corner of the room, labels facing outward so you can see them.

6.    Next, address your closet. Use one black bag for unused shoes, belts and scarves. Use one bag for hanging clothes (Maybe two). Use the third bag for the top closet shelf. Put those three to four labeled bags in a separate corner. Toss into the bags, anything you have not touched in 2 months.

7.    Now, for the items on the bed – put them away where they belong.

8.    Try to live in your bedroom with just the things you have left over – for one whole month. Mark a calendar on the wall, for each of the 30 days if you must. See how you ‘feel’ living on less. The good news is that you didn’t throw anything away yet, so anything is retrievable and relatively easy to find (via the labels).

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One clean bedroom naturally begets an automatic sense of peace and calm…

For those who have real difficulty in letting go of anything – the black bags are a visual reminder that NOTHING was thrown away and that everything they own is still right beside them in the same room. In time, SOME individuals may just find that they personally feel calmer; more centered and actually may even like being more organized. With less clothes to wear and shoes to sift through, there’s less physical labor in maintaining those items; less laundry, less time spent on straightening up, etc.  Living in a cleaner room allows one to re-think how they want their personal space to reflect their personality as it exists in the NOW.

After all, one’s own bedroom is often the only personal sanctuary there is against the world sometimes. Shouldn’t it feel safe and cozy and supportive? When people feel safe, they feel calmer and more relaxed, and even more mentally sane. One might become suddenly inspired and consider painting the room in a whole new color. It would be easy to do so, as items are now protected in the black bags, which can easily be moved around the room, while one paints. Maybe it inspires one to purchase a new bedspread in a bold new color. Or it might be fun to purchase or upgrade a piece of ‘cool furniture’, (like a storage chest that will last many years to come).

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Yosemite Chest Collection

If after a month, one finds themselves feeling so good that they can actually let their packed things go – they can surprise their favorite friends with a fun and exciting ‘treasure trash bag’. Who knows…maybe a few of them could even start a new give-a-way trend. This technique can be applied to any room in the house. It also works really well for those who are just a little messy-minded too. Though these tips may not address the more extreme hoarders, who actually may need professional intervention – it can certainly help those who recognize that they they may actually be hoarders in the making…incognito or not.

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Optimizing Your Workspace

When selecting storage shelves for your office or workspace, open book shelves are plentiful and come in many styles and shapes and therefore, are often quite tempting to buy. However, any kind of open book shelf means that everything stacked upon it or within it will be under close scrutiny by house guests, and in this case, there’s no hiding a messy pile of papers. Here are a few tips for optimizing your workspace:

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Use One Great Masking System

Choosing a closed door cabinet system, enables you to hide-store your messy ‘to do’ piles for another time. The closed doors will enable the room to appear more organized, and oftentimes, when one feels organized, one tends to actually become more productive, ironic as that sounds.

BLOG-2Choose a Glass Desk Set

A glass desk actually allows the eye to see through to the whole room, which often gives the illusion of more room space. By choosing a 3 piece L shaped desk unit, you have the option of separating the pieces and thus, you have the option to redecorate every few months. Glass desks are relatively lightweight and easy to move around, when separated. Look for ones that allow you to flip the L part to either side. Or choose a glass table that can double as a dining set.

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Consider The Importance of the Office Chair

Let’s face it – if you’re not comfortable, you won’t stay seated for very long. Choose a roomy, supportive chair that offers a selection of chair positions and heights. Choose something you won’t sweat in, won’t slip in, and won’t slouch in. Be sure that the chairs wheels move easily and glide into several directions effortlessly.

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Add an Easy to Clean Touch of Color, Area Rug

A great way to take the boredom out standard office furniture, especially when you are working with closed cabinets  is to enhance the room with a bright and contemporary styled area rug.  Not only are area rugs easy to remove and clean, they can be laid out on a variable of diagonals to create an off symmetry look – just for fun. Selecting a busier pattern with many colors will help hide the traffic dirt.

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Accent Pieces Double as Storage

It’s always lovely to have a few accent pieces in the room, but who says they should just be adornments? Choose decorative nested boxes or covered vases that will hold additional items, such as pens, paper clips, etc. There will be plenty of additional places to organize your office goods, if you select wisely and use several sets in a room.

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