14 articles Tag DIY

Glazed or Not? Which internal doors are better

Door styles have come a long way over the years, and this versatility and variety have come as a result of the needs of homeowners across the world. Interior designs are different, and homes now have a lot of different themes as well. Keeping with this variety, two types of doors have taken the market by storm and are the most common choices for homeowners, especially for their internal doors. These are glazed and unglazed doors. Another factor to think about is whether or not you want the door to lock or not. Many people like to have locks on certain doors like bathrooms and get a company such as Fast keys to install it.

The choice of door style that will work best for your home depends mainly on the interior design of the house, the architecture and style of the home, and what the owners want from the home design of course. A glazed door offers a lot of different qualities than an unglazed door and determining which one to buy depends on which qualities work best with your home. Here is a short and comprehensive guide on which door will work best for your home.

A glazed door is often considered to be a bit more modern in its design and style and is commonly used by those that want their internal doors to appear and feel light instead of traditional and heavy. They can be used in kitchens, living rooms, and all kinds of hallways to add in more light to the house and to ensure that the different parts of the house are not closed off from each other. They can, however, only be used in parts of the house that do not have issues with privacy. They can primarily be used in darker corners of the house to add more light to those areas without having to install extra artificial lighting sources such as bulbs. These doors are also customizable in terms of how much glazing is needed. You can have entirely internal glazed doors with large panes of glass or medium or half internal glazed doors that have smaller glass panes and offer a bit more privacy from shops like Online Door Store. Internal glazed doors are great for homes that need the extra light and for individuals that can afford to invest in internal doors that are slightly costly.

Unglazed doors, as the name suggests, are doors without the glazing. They do not have large glass panes to add and bring in extra light into the home. It is possible to use any cut-out space to add glass, but it is up to the homeowner to do so themselves. These doors are considerably cheaper than glazed doors, so these are great options for individuals on a budget. If glass panes must be added to these unglazed doors to turn them into internal glazed doors, then this can be done on a budget by reusing old glazing or finding affordable glass panes on your own. Unglazed doors, for that very reason, are great for homes that do not absolutely require a lot of extra light being brought in, and by individuals that may be on a tighter budget.

Dress up Your Outdoor Windows for Summer

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

As we move into the warmer weather, you may want to give your home a fresh look to reflect the change of season. Not only can you make interior décor changes to fit the summer vibe, but the exterior of your home deserves some TLC too.

Do you ever walk past a lovely-looking house and admire decorative features in the driveway, beautiful windows, or a brightly painted door? First impressions are everything, and what your home looks like from the outside can instantly boost a home’s curb appeal.

With so many styles to choose from, it can feel overwhelming to do a complete overhaul of your home’s exterior, so take it one step at a time, and begin with your windows.

Here are four ideas to dress up your outdoor windows for summer, using the classic English House for style inspiration.

Select Your Window Type

Don’t underestimate the power of your window frames as they make all the difference when preparing your home to “pop” from the outside. Sash windows are the perfect choice to achieve the English House look as the “sashes” form a frame to hold the panels of glass. They’re an elegant and timeless way to finish off a period-inspired home.

You can choose between uPVC Sash Windows or Timber Windows, each of which offers you a range of styles and configurations. From dual swing to tilt and slide to casement and sliding sash, you’ll be sure to find the right option to suit your home. For a classic English House style, a timber window with the sliding sash style would be ideal.

You can also choose any colour for timber windows if you treat the frames with several coatings of specialised paint. White window frames offer a classic English House style and look great against bricks or stone. View sash window inspiration here.

Add Window Flower Boxes

When properly arranged and placed, window boxes are a wonderful addition to your home’s exterior to add some colour and to make heads turn.

The best window boxes compliment the style of a house, so make sure that the size is correct (not too wide) and that the depth gives your flowers enough room to grow, without blocking the window’s view.

Pick your favourite summer flowers and you can look at them with pride every time you return home. View window flower box inspiration here.

Install Decorative Exterior Shutters

Typically, window shutters are used on the inside of the window frame to control the amount of light that comes through. However, you’ve likely seen them on the outside of people’s homes and wondered do people actually open and close them? Although window shutters were originally designed for privacy and security, they are now more commonly used for decoration and style.

Exterior window shutters add character and charm to your home’s appearance and require little in the way of maintenance. View exterior shutter inspiration here.

Consider Window Awnings

Window awnings are another great addition for aesthetic purposes as the overhang above the window adds an extra dimension to your home’s exterior. With so many, colours, patterns and designs available, it’s easy to choose an awning that will match the style and décor you are trying to create. View window awning inspiration here.

Awnings also prevent the sun from shining in through the windows and protect the window from above.

Not only are these window additions great for curb appeal and your own enjoyment, but they can also translate into a higher resale value of your home — in case you ever decide to move.

Now take a step back and admire your Pinterest worthy outdoor windows you’ll be amazed at how much they doll up the exterior of your home!

Tips to Refresh your Home at the Start of 2019

As we move into 2019 many people will be looking to refresh their homes with a new modern look. Here we cover several top interior design tips you could use in order to do so.

• New theme

Changing the style to your home is a very good way of giving it that new updated look. This could be done through simply changing the colours around your home. Using a selection of no more than 2-3 core colours is usually the best approach.

• Making a statement

Many people are now looking to make a statement with the style of their home, whether this be through a floor rug or a modern composite door such as the ones at Truedor. Rugs add comfort to almost any space, the right one can push forward a striking statement. It is important to look over the proportion of your room prior to selecting a rug.

• Artwork

Adding artwork to walls can completely change the overall look of the room as on many occasions these are neglected. There are an endless list of different ones to choose from, so you can give your home that preferred style you are looking for.

• Plants

Adding greenery to your home or workspace can really improve the space. It can be a ready compliment to the room, when added to a neutral colour scheme.

• Style right

Choosing the correct décor is very important. Simply keeping things arranged in groups of different heights, textures and tones instantly gives the room that greater visual interest.

• Lighting

Lighting is possibly the most important factor when it comes to creating a modern inviting home. This can be through allowing more natural light into your home through the correct windows in place. Or simply adding floor and table lamps around the living space to create a bright home. Creating a warm glow to a room, is a great and simply way to modernise the space.

• Minimalism

The final tip is being simple. Minimalism is continuing to grow in popularity and is a great way to not only give your home a modern look, but will enable you to enhance the space around the room and home in general.

Plumbing Emergencies and Tips on How to Deal with Them

Plumbing problems are uncommon, especially when you live in an old house. While a good plumbing system can run with minimum maintenance, there are still many things that could go wrong. In a worst-case scenario, you may have to deal with a plumbing emergency in the middle of the night.

Knowing how to deal with the most common plumbing emergencies is something that everyone needs to know. Taking the right first steps helps to prevent those emergencies from becoming bigger problems that aren’t always so easy to deal with. To help you prepare for the next plumbing emergency, here are some of the things you need to know.

The Right Tools for the Job

Before you are forced to deal with plumbing-related issues, you want to make sure that the right tools are available in the house. Simple things such as a forced cup and plunger can be very handy; not having them, on the other hand, can make dealing with plumbing emergencies difficult.

You also want to have a big enough bucket and leak-sealing tapes. These let you deal with leaks before you can contact the best plumbers available for the job. At the very least, you can prevent water from spreading before the emergency plumber arrives.

Other tools are more common; you probably have them around the house already. Some Allen keys, wrenches, a set of screwdrivers, and a tool caddy for keeping them organised are all useful tools to own. Complete the set by adding blind caps and towels or rags.

Know Your System

Next, you want to equip yourself with some basic knowledge on how the plumbing system is set up. At the very least, you need to know where the main water shut-off valve is located. When there is a sudden leak, you can shut off the water immediately and prevent further damage.

A good plumbing system also has a number of isolation valves. Their main purpose is so you can shut off the flow of water to certain areas around the house, making dealing with specific issues easier. For example, there is usually a shut-off valve below a sink, so you can isolate the taps without turning off the main’s water supply.

When working with the plumbers, it is also a good idea to have professionals inspect the system thoroughly.

Who to Contact

24/7 services are handy because the best service providers can be contacted at any time. That said, you want to find the best plumbers to contact so you don’t have to go through the hassle of searching for one when you have an emergency to deal with.

Asking the plumbers to inspect the system prior to dealing with an actual emergency is a good idea for this very reason. If you’re looking for a recommendation, you can start by contacting the Bristol plumbers at Plumbing Care Services. You can get a fast quote by filling in the contact form on their website or simply give them a call if you have an emergency. They strive for a 60 minute response time so are a good option to consider if you’re in an emergency.

Having the number of a reputable plumber to hand prior to an actual emergency also allows you to compare quotes and estimates better. By the time you need their services, you already have their day rate and know how much the job is likely to cost.

The Right First Steps

Shutting off the main valve or the isolation valve to a specific area is always a good first step to take when you have a plumbing emergency to deal with. However, it is far from a permanent fix. In fact, leaving the master valve closed for too long is inconvenient.

Remember that you have more tools to use, which means you can deal with many emergencies yourself. In the event of a leak, for instance, you can use Teflon tape to seal the leak temporarily. You can also use blind caps as a quick-fix for broken fixtures.

Wrenches are handy for when you have loose pipes, or when you need to replace some fixtures yourself. You can use a plunger to fix a clogged drain or toilet. Use a cup plunger for smaller drains, or a forced cup plunger for sinks and toilets.

Keep a bucket handy, especially when you need to open fixtures or drains. Even when there is no water visible from the top, the system may still have water inside. Opening pipes and drains could mean letting a lot of water out of the system, something you want to do with buckets and rags handy.

Here’s another reason why knowing who to call is a must: you can ask for first-aid advice over the phone. If you are not sure about what to do in the emergency, contact your local plumber and ask for a step-by-step direction.

With the main issue solved – even when it is only temporarily fixed – you don’t have to worry about the plumbing emergency turning into a bigger problem or damaging other parts of the house. You can then sit back and wait for the plumber of your choice to come and deal with the bigger repair.

Super Easy Ways to Update Your Bathroom

For every family, the bathroom is an important room. It is more than just somewhere to freshen up. A lot of people enjoy taking a long leisurely bath. It is a great way to relax. But, it is only a nice experience if your bathroom looks and feels nice. If yours is looking a little old and tired, do not worry because there are some really simple ways for you to freshen things up a bit.

Replacing the flooring

If the floor needs renewing to the discount flooring depot and take a look at what is available. They sell an incredibly wide range of product and are one of the few online firms that are happy to send you samples. This is a great way of working out if the colour and quality are right.

If you do decide to opt to lay engineered wood flooring just be careful to order the type that is designed for use in a damp environment. This type of flooring can be laid in about 2 hours, looks good and is hard-wearing, all of which makes it a great option for a family bathroom.

You don’t necessarily have to re-tile

When it comes to updating a bathroom, the worst job has to be re-tiling. If you can avoid doing it, you really should. Fortunately, there are lots of other ways to update and spruce up your existing tiling. Simply cleaning it and using specialist grout paint can have a transformative effect.

Cracked tiles can be replaced individually using different, but complementary, tiles. Or you can use decals to cover them up or give your bathroom a fresh new look. Mirrors are great for covering issues up too and freshening things up. They do not take long to hang and you can buy them in a wide range of shapes and sizes. Mirrors help to reflect the light, which means that they help to make the bathroom feel more modern, brighter and, in some cases, bigger.

Create more storage space

A cluttered bathroom will never look nice. Get everybody into the habit of putting their toiletries away. To encourage them to do this provide everyone with a basket to stow their toiletries and other personal hygiene items in. This can be slotted into a rack that is set up in the corner of the bathroom. Better still, when each member of the family is finished in the bathroom, they can take their little storage basket with them and slide it under their bed. You can find plenty of attractive, easy and innovative bathroom storage ideas, online.

Update your towels and bath mats

Swapping your thin, worn towels for some nice new fluffy ones will also have a positive effect. If you use a bath mat update that at the same time.

Add a couple of plants

A plant with big green leaves will look fantastic in any bathroom. Aloe Vera looks especially nice and will thrive in the warmth and moisture. But, the fact that there is a sharp point on the end of each leaf means they may not be a good idea if you have children. Instead, opt for bromeliads, ferns or aspidistra.

Easy Home Improvements That Can Make Your Life Better

We all want to live in a nice home, which is why we spend so much time decorating and updating them. Some jobs take forever and do not really make a big difference to how comfortable we are. While, others, like the ones I am going to talk about below, really do make our life easier and more comfortable.

Install a heated towel rail

Heated towel rails, like this, are great. They look good, will not rust and ensure that you always have a nice, warm, dry towel to use. Often, you can use the pipes that are already in place for your existing radiator. So, installing one need not be too disruptive.

Update your shower

If you want to enjoy a more powerful shower, try updating the showerhead. Sometimes this is all that is needed.

It is also worth checking that the connection between your mains and home supply has been fully opened. Occasionally, this connection can get turned off during construction work and not get turned on properly again. If you suffer from low water pressure throughout your home, this could be why.

Enhance your lighting

Updating your lighting is a great way to improve the ambience of your home. This in-depth article explains what you need to consider when tackling this project. It also outlines the easiest approach.

Draught-proof your home

Draught proofing your home need not take long and it will make a huge difference to how comfortable you feel. Plus, it should also reduce your fuel and power bills.

Refresh your walls

Re-painting or wallpapering a room is a hassle. Fortunately, you can usually get away with taking an easier approach. Sometimes just hanging new artwork or wall hangings can be all you need to do.

Other times, touching up the paintwork will be enough. Just wallpapering one wall can also work. Or, if you could use stencils or wall stickers to change things up a bit.

Paint your front door

Painting your front door will make a huge difference to how nice your home looks from outside. It also worth power washing the path cutting the grass and spraying the weeds.

Renew your door furnishings

If your internal door handles are looking worn, just replace them. It is easy to do.

Sort out your flooring

If your floors or carpets have seen better days, cover them up or replace them. For some rooms, rugs will be all you need. If you do need to renew your flooring, use the easy to lay options. Lino or laminate flooring are too particularly good options. You do not need any special equipment to be able to lay them.

Renew your kitchen cabinet doors

Instead of ripping out your old kitchen and installing a new one, just replace the doors instead. This is far cheaper. Plus, this is the kind of job that you can do gradually, which makes it manageable for most DIYers.

Many of the suggestions I have made, above, are not expensive. So, if you want to make your home more comfortable why not try one or two of them.

Improving Your Home’s Kerb Appeal

kerb appealMost people agree that when they’re viewing houses, they make their mind up within a few seconds of seeing it from the outside. This means that it doesn’t matter if your house is a palace on the inside, if it lacks kerb appeal, you won’t get the sale. There are lots of things you can do to improve your house’s kerb appeal, and these are five of them:

Update Your Exterior

It’s a well-known fact that pebble dashing is one of the least popular exterior wall coatings, but even rendered walls and brick can look past their best. Take an objective look at your exterior walls and decide if they could do with sprucing up, as this investment could pay back easily when you sell your property.

Front Door

Front doors are the main entrance to your house and one of the first things that people see, so if your UPVC is looking tatty or a wooden door needs a rub down, this can affect how people view the whole property. Updating a door can be as simple as giving it a clean or a lick of paint, costing very little but improving your chances of a sale.

Lawns

If your lawn is overgrown, patchy or full of weeds, it’s going to make your property look tatty. It takes very little effort to sort out a front garden and an afternoon of graft could make your house look SO much smarter. Invest in a few plants or ornaments to give your garden a nice finish. If you’re really keen on giving your garden a proper makeover, re-laying turf would also be a winner.

Window Coverings

Technically, this is an interior thing, but you need to take a really objective look at your window coverings from the outside of your property and decide if they do your property justice. Blinds which look tatty or net curtains which have seen better days not only make a property look less-than-clean, they also make the whole place look dated, and can make it really hard to envision a modern look. Replacing nets with privacy film on half of the window, or even investing in shutters, can give your property a modern, luxurious feel and can make your home look fresher with very little effort. At the VERY least, wash and rehang your nets so they look clean and new!

Woodwork

If your home has wooden window frames or wooden fascias, are they looking well looked after? Wood needs to be cared for, be it with varnish or paint and can degrade quickly if it’s not, so giving them a rub-down and re-paint will not only make them look better, but it will show prospective buyers that you’ve cared for the property too – it can be a huge turn-off if it looks like buyers will need to do a lot of work on a house, especially if they’re looking to move straight in and not do any work.

Do you have any great tips for improving the kerb appeal of a home? Leave me a comment below.

EcoAir Dehumidfier (Review)

When we moved into our current property, we had an inkling that it may have had an issue with damp because although the walls and ceilings were fairly newly painted, there was a wallpapered feature wall in the main bedroom and it was bubbling quite badly in one corner. However, we loved so many things about the house and the location that we decided we’d just deal with the damp as and when it became a problem for us…which was basically six months after moving in!

We spent the best part of two winters bleaching the walls and ceilings when the mould grew through and did our best to keep the rooms well aired; we didn’t dry washing on the radiators and kept the windows on vent all year round but it was starting to feel like a bit of a battle. The landlady did her best to help as well, paying to have an extractor vent installed in the bathroom and eventually having a whole new roof on the house! Husband and I also spent a week treating the walls and ceilings with a special mould-resistant paint and a paint which contained volcanic ash to stop cold spots, but none of this would be any good if we didn’t tackle the condensation problem. EcoAir DD-3 Classic dehumidifier

In stepped the EcoAir DD3 dehumidifier. EcoAir sent it to us to try out and I cannot begin to tell you how happy I am that they did. The main time that we experience condensation on the walls and windows is in the morning and leaving it to soak into the walls throughout the day was obviously causing the mould to grow. Now, we put the EcoAir on as soon as we get up and leave it on a 2 hour cycle (or sometimes a 4 hour cycle when the condensation looks particularly bad) and we’ve been measuring how much water we collect each time. The results are genuinely mindblowing.

On a 2 hour cycle, we collect 500ml of water and on a 4 hour cycle, we colect around 850ml of water. That’s half a litre to almost a litre of water PER DAY which isn’t soaking into our walls.

When I first emptied the collection tray out, I was properly astounded by just how much water was in there and I won’t lie, I’m just as impressed every single day. So far, between the treatments we’ve given the walls and the dehumidifier working so hard, we’ve had almost three months of being completely mould-free, which is a HUGE deal for us. We were starting to worry about the effects that it may be having on our health and were really considering our options in terms of whether continuing to live in this house was viable, but this has much such a huge difference that it no longer even feels like an issue.

Damp Before and After

One thing we loved about the EcoAir DD3 is that it’s so easy to use. The collection tray just slots in and out and it even has an emptying spout on the bottom to make it even easier to empty. It also comes with a hose which you could run into a plughole and leave on constant if you had a massive damp problem to deal with. Also, and I’m sure this isn’t a feature that EcoAir promote, the air it blows out is slightly warm, so if you were to run it for an hour before you got in bed on a winter night, you’d make the room feel warmer, too!

I know it seems like bloggers are often effusive in their praise when they’ve been sent something for a review, but I’m being totally honest about the fact that it’s made such a big difference to our lives, and I would honestly recommend it to anyone who was battling against damp. It’s small enough not to feel like it takes up too much space, it’s easy to use, easy to empty, and works BRILLIANTLY. If I had one minor criticism, it would be that it’s ever so slightly noisy, but given the fact that I never run it when I’m in the room, that really is a minor issue.

Do let me know if you have any questions about the EcoAir DD3, do leave me a comment below or hit me up on social media.

(Affiliate link)

My Top DIY Tips

Before we begin, I should probably confess that I am by NO means a DIY expert. By the same token, we’ve been doing a fair bit of decorating and DIY recently as we had a few bits in the house that needed doing and our landlady asked us to do them. Between painting, damp-proofing, repairs and improvements – if I’m doing big projects that involve the use of plastics, I used Simply Plastics, it’s been a real baptism of fire as it’s years since I’ve done anything like this, and I was probably a kid helping my parents the last time I did any of it. Jumping in at the deep end means that we’ve learned a few things along the way so I thought I’d share some of my pearls of wisdom with you:

It Doesn’t Matter How Careful You Are, Your Clothes Will Get Dirty

You can be the neatest, most careful painter and DIY-er on the planet but there’s still a better than average chance that you’ll end up getting SOMETHING on your clothes! Wearing old clothes for decorating in is all well and good, but using dedicated workwear if you have a big renovation project to complete is a really good idea as not only will you not mind if you get it dirty, you’ll also feel more in the DIY mood if you’re all kitted out. Take a look at the Engelbert Strauss’s website for some great options.

It Can Make or Break a Relationship

Decorating is one of those things which can be really fun and a great exercise in teamwork but it can also be massively stressful and a source of conflict for many couples. Husband and I are lucky enough to be really good at working together as a team when we’re doing practical things like decorating or furniture building, but it has also caused some fairly big rows in the past, so be prepared for potential tiffs! When doing DIY make sure you prepare a skip for all of your un wanted waste. Check out this skip hire company in benfleet for more information on quality skips.

It Might Not Always Go To Plan

Having a vision of what things will look like is all well and good but tempering your expectations will do you a favour in the long run, rather than allowing yourself to be disappointed if it doesn’t go your way. Husband and I recently decorated our bedroom and I had my heart set on a wallpapered feature wall, only to realise that the wall was just too damp to hang paper on. Although we’ve treated the damp and painted over it, it’s still pointless hanging paper which could ultimately be ruined but that didn’t change the fact that I was VERY disappointed for a while!

Have you learned something from a renovation project recently? Do leave me a comment below as I’d love to hear about it!

Gardening and DIY with Kids This Spring

When it gets to this time of year, where the weather is a bit more clement, my mind is always full of all of the DIY and garden stuff that I’d like to do and now that the kids are older and a little more able to get involved (don’t worry, I won’t let Burrito Baby hold any power tools!) I’ve been thinking about things we can do together. Luckily, my friends from the blogging world are the BEST source of inspiration, so I thought I’d share some brilliant posts with you of my favourite projects that they’ve done.

How to Make a Tardis Wardrobe

I’ve you’ve got a gaggle of mini Whovians living in your house then this guide to making a tardis wardrobe is perfect for you. Husband and I really encourage the girls to have their interests and try to indulge them as far as possible so I absolutely love the fact that Penny at Parentshaped has nurtured her daughter’s love for all things Doctor Who with her bedroom furniture.

CD Fish Bird Scarers

CD fish bird scarers

I absolutely LOVE this idea for DIY bird-scarers that Liz over at Me and My Shadow made with her daughter to protect their home garden patch. As well as upcycling and making use of old CDs, thus keeping them out of landfill, they look really pretty too. Such a great project to do with kid as you can be as creative as you like with how you decorate them.

DIY Matchbox Drawer Chest

Red Ted Art DIY matchbox drawers

Something that we ALWAYS need more of in our house is storage, so I love the idea of making ourselves some storage solutions out of other things. These cute little drawers from Red Ted Art are the perfect place to keep art supplies and school stuff, and I’ll definitely be making some of these with the girls.

Top Tips for Gardening With Children

At the risk of going a bit meta, Carolin at Mummy Alarm has put together another rundown post, sharing a whole load of other posts about gardening with kids. It’s a real wealth of information which will be useful in the months to come and I’m going to go through and read all of it with interest.

Bedroom in a Box

Dulux Bedroom in a BoxMaking design decisions can be really tricky, especially when you’re trying to stick to a theme, which is why Dulux decided to make the “Bedroom in a Box”, which Sian at Helpful Mum reviewed. She chose a jungle theme for her kids and takes us through exactly how she dealt with the makeover, as well as giving her opinion on the results.

Five Easy Foods to Grow with Kids

If you’re planning on growing veg this spring and summer with your kids, Emma at The Syders has got some excellent suggestions of what you can grow. When I was a kid, I loved nothing more than helping my grandad to pick the peas and runner beans he’d grown in the garden and I think it’s really important for kids to see where food comes from…plus, NOTHING tastes better than strawberries grown in your own garden!

Planting and Sowing

Emmy’s Mummy has got another great gardening post about how to get the kids involved with the planting and sowing stage of gardening, perfect for this time of year. They’re growing a whole variety of different fruit and veg which will be a fabulous crop once they’re all grown and ready for harvest.

Easy DIY Crepe Paper Tulips Craft Tutorial

Tulips are one of my favourite flowers (have you ever seen the black ones?!) and this tulip craft is absolutely perfect for this time of year when the flowers are starting to bloom. As Katie says, they’d be the perfect centrepiece for an Easter dinner, but I also think they’d be ideal for Mother’s Day too, especially if your Mum has allergies and can’t have real flowers.