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Posted by Michelle Lesser at 10 September, 2014

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Buying Rugs on a Budget

On one hand, you assume that cheap is another word for quality that is rather suspect; we assume that cheap rugs must be sub-standard in terms of material, robustness and structure but this is not always the case. The Rug Retailer explains below as to how you can buy cheap, luxurious rugs.
Creating maximum impact in any room with a fabulous, yet cheap area rug is easier than you think and here are our top tips for ensuring that you get value for money.

Cheap rugs – choosing the right rug

The beauty of an area rug is that you can change it, as often or as little as you like. For those people looking to make an investment in a permanent rug, then you can afford to look at the heftier price tags BUT, if you change your rugs as often as the seasons (or more so!), then there are options for you too.
On one hand, people frown and furrow their brow at the idea of purchasing rugs that are made from synthetic materials but, if you are a frequent rug changer, then choosing a synthetic rug is the way forward, Cheaper on the price tag, they come in a range of colours and finishes which means you can ring the changes at the end of summer, and opt for darker, cosier colours in winter, or keep the brightness and richness of autumn running through your home; alternatively, you can welcome the gentle warmth of spring with a lighter-coloured rug.
But, if your eco-credentials are still important to you there are still some ‘natural’, organic options open to you. Rugs made from plant fibres – sisal and jute are just two examples, along with bamboo – can offer a rug at a competitive price than can be changed over and over again.
Then again, there may be some of you that cannot entertain the idea of having nothing but naturalness in your home and wool rugs can be surprisingly cheap, especially the smaller rugs that can be used dotted about the home. They also last for a very long time and so the pay off with this longevity and the price tag is that they are the cost-effective option.

How is it made?

Another factor that affects price, effectively bumping it up to astronomical proportions in some cases is not just the size or material, but how it is made.
Money no option? Want the gold standard of crafted rugs? Opt for hand-knotted rugs. Made by seriously talented and skilled people across the globe, these are not your run of the mill rugs.
But you get our drift, those rugs that are machine made (dare we say, ‘mass produced’?!) will take less skill and man hours to make, hence they roll off the production line cheaper than paying an artisan to make one.
There is a way you can check for a high quality rug and that is to peek on the underside; if you can see the pattern, it is a woven rug and will be well made. Spot a backing and it’s probably not. Remember the days when carpets would be woven or rubber-backed? The same thing applies to rugs.
Now that is not to say that you cannot pick up a bargain when it comes to hand-knotted or woven rugs but remember when you are haggling, that in terms of hand knotted rugs, someone will have worked very long hours, possibly for many, many months and they deserve fair pay. Overall, expect to pay a third less on the price tag for a machine made rug than one made by a skilled hand.

Size

We have already alluded that the price of a rug can be affected by the size.
Interior design dictates that you simply must get the right size rug; too small and it looks so lost in a room that it is faintly ridiculous. Too large and it will be up the walls.
However, if you are on a budget and you in the market for cheap rugs, then you could get very clever here and actually make one interior design dictum work to your advantage… use more than one rug!
But, there may be some other size considerations you need to think about too, one being the thickness of a rug; you may find that some cheaper rugs are thinner than some of the more expensive rugs on the market but in some areas of your home this may be just fine.
The bedroom rug always benefits from being a little bit plusher; in the dining room you want to make sure the rug is big enough to be a platform for both table and chairs and in the living room… well, the options are endless!
There is one rule of thumb that some designers go by when it comes to the price of a rug in the lounge – the price of the rug should roughly be the same as the price of the sofa. But getting the right sized rug is important is so many different, stylish ways http://stylebyemilyhenderson.com/blog/tips-to-choosing-the-right-rug-

Look after your rug and it will be a cost-effective option

The best way of investing in cheap or cost effective rugs is to make sure that they are looked after and one way of doing that – bar regular cleaning and stain-removal – is the use of pads underneath them. This stops them slip, sliding about the floor which also means less wear and tear.
Buying rugs on a budget does not mean buying inferior quality that won’t last longer than a week; it means getting the best you can afford and taking care of it!






Posted by Michelle Lesser at 10 September, 2014

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Posted by Michelle Lesser at 8 September, 2014

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Bookowski, Bookshop by KASIA ORWAT home design

Bookowski is a bookshop located in CK Zamek – a historic site on the map of Poznan – the former Imperial Castle, today’s Cultural Center. However, the word “bookstore” is not enough to describe the place in its context. Bookowski is as the CK Zamek itself – a multicultural space in which apart from books (and the available selection is huge!) events related to literature are organized; where you can not only read a book but browse through albums and even listen to the music of the vinyl records you’ll find there thanks to the cooperation with the Multikulti association.

Bookowski’s interior was designed by KASIA ORWAT home design. The project’s arrangement was a big challenge as the space had to keep walls and floors finishing, becoming basically a project about finding the best solution for the new functionality of the place. And the limited budget triggered the designers imagination to the highest level.

Photography by Weronika Trojanowska.

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Posted by Michelle Lesser at 8 September, 2014

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DINN by Alessandro Zambelli for Diamantini&Domeniconi

The year is 1827; the scene, Teatro La Pergola in Florence. The curtain descends. The stage is bathed in light as hushed darkness falls on the auditorium. The repartee is sparkling, witty, riveting. Flashes of original virtuosity hold the audience spellbound. We may be in a theatre, but this is no set piece. The dialogue is not between actors, for the protagonists are a violin and a bell. The whimsical genius of Niccolò Paganini created Concerto No. 2 for violin and orchestra. Indeed “La Campanella” (the little bell) is his most famous concerto. And its first performance was by the maestro himself in this ornate Florentine setting.  But musical masterpieces never lose their charm. So, now, musician-designer Alessandro Zambelli has applied the brilliant originality of La Campanella to a furniture accessory created for Diamantini&Domeniconi. A preview of DINN, the clock with the Campanella bell, can be seen at Maison et Objet (Hall 8, Stand A33-B34), the exhibition rendez-vous in Paris from 5 to 9 September.

The stark, round face takes bare essentials almost to an extreme. The material is MDF and comes in white and light oak.  Within the circle is one bright, attention-grabbing spark of originality. A small, unexpected bell contrasts brassily with the painted face of the timepiece. This precious detail stands out as the clock’s  ‘dinging’ heart. The visual impression made by the hands, in anthracite-coloured aluminium, is equally powerful. Clearly they are key features of its idiosyncratic, passing strike mechanism. In fact the minute hand terminates in a tiny hammer which nudges the clapper of the bell hourly, ‘on the dot.’ The clapper swings. It rings the bell. DINN.

 






Posted by Keren Fathi-Poor at 4 September, 2014

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The Wrinkle Table and the Tangle Bar Stool by Clark Bardsley

Wrinkle’ – Wrinkle bent steel tube used for furniture range by Clark Bardsley.

Clark Bardsley Design (CBD) worked closely with a specialist tube bender to create the unique wrinkle bend detail that playfully emphasises the plasticity of steel. So far the detail has been used in the ‘Tangle’ range of stools and tables, and a zigzagging low circular coffee table.

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Posted by Michelle Lesser at 3 September, 2014

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4 Feasible Ways To Link Fitness With Home Extensions

[Image Source  - https://www.flickr.com/photos/wanhoff/455500490/]

We all want to get fit, in one way or another – but how many of us actually do? Figures suggest that we, as a nation, squander £37m on gym memberships that we don’t even use, so why don’t we go? Whether it’s having to stay in with your kids or not finding the motivation to uproot yourself out of the house and drive all the way to the gym, there’s always reasons we never get round to it – some more valid than others!

We’d all love to be able to do more at home – it’s so much more convenient, there are less people hogging the machines and you don’t feel so self-conscious, particularly if you’re new to the gym. This guest post runs through four ways to really make your home fitness friendly if you’re thinking of major renovations.

1. Home Gym

Your first instinct, when thinking of fitness in the home, is going to be to jump straight for replicating the feel of a commercial gym but with the convenience and comfort of it being in the next room – and it’s not a bad jump to make.  If you’re already adding new space it’s perfect; it’s vital for a home gym to be somewhere totally separate to the rest of the house. Much like a home office, you won’t be motivated for long enough and you’ll struggle to stop being distracted.

The minimum cost of a home extension, according to Trade Advisor, is around £15,900 – and they can rise towards the £50,000 depending on size. A smaller extension would be more than enough for a home gym, keeping the costs down, and all the equipment in The Independent’s top 10 home gym equipment list comes in at well under £2,000 – which means kitting it out needn’t cost the earth either.

2. Swimming Pool

Before you click off and assume that home swimming pools are completely unaffordable, just keep reading. Remember the previous section and our home extension minimum being around the £16,000 mark? Swimming pools are not too far behind – with the Society of Pool and Allied Trades Association (SPATA) estimating between £15,000 and £25,000 for a typical home pool.

This means that, far from being a dream luxury that only the very rich can afford, for some it’s potentially just a toss-up between extending your kitchen and garage or having a swimming pool installed. There are plenty of specialist firms too, such as Edge Leisure, who will carry out design work as well as manufacture and installation to ensure it fits your garden space adequately.

3. Expanded Living Spaces

You don’t have to be rolling in cash or getting armed to the teeth with high-tech gym equipment to make some dedicated space in your home. Whether you’ve got two separate living rooms or a spare bedroom which sees next to no use, there’s usually scope in a reasonably sized home to open up your usable spaces and break down the walls – literally.

Say you really want to get into yoga, or simple muscle building exercises like push-ups but you just don’t have the room in the living room. Getting a partition wall knocked down can cost, on average, as little as £1,100 according to industry reference site Building Sheriff – giving you plenty of room for a living area as well as a workout space.

4. Home Saunas

Sounds ridiculous? Far from it. There are plenty of manufacturers offering free-standing home sauna units, which can easily be incorporated into any home extension plans – and they don’t have to cost the earth either.

Most models come in at well under £1,000, making them one of the more affordable fitness options in our top four – although YourSaunaAndSteamRoom.co put the average modular four-person and larger models at around the £2,500 mark.  However much you budget to spend, and however large you need your sauna, just be sure to stick to reputable brands, such as Helo, rather than skimping on a no-name option.

Armed with these four fitness changes, it’s easy to get ideas for your home’s next health-inspired extension or renovation. It might require some investment, but it can be worth it in the long run – no more excuses, get exercising!

 

This guest post was written by Tom McShane – a UK-based marketing blogger working in conjunction with swimming pool specialists Edge Leisure

 

 

 

 






Posted by Keren Fathi-Poor at 2 September, 2014

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