Where to Start on All Major Decorating Projects

Recently I was asked, from an overwhelmed homeowner, “in what order should I begin my decorating and remodeling project?” The answer? Do what the professionals do!

When a house is built, they begin with the foundation, build the walls, add a roof, get the inside protected by windows, doors, roofing and siding. Then they come inside and do all the stuff under the protective coating (the drywall, sheetrock, plaster). They wire for electric, put in plumbing, HVAC, security systems, and audio and visual systems. Then they hang the drywall, sheetrock or plaster. After that they usually do trim work like your moldings and door and window facings. At the same time or within some succession they work on built-ins. Then they paint, usually with a sprayer, then they add the bathrooms, kitchens, floors, and finish the trim and light fixtures, etc.

In a home decorating or remodel project if you are starting over from top to bottom you can take the same steps as a professional builder does.

1. First begin with any new construction, room dividers, holes in walls, new window openings, new windows, etc.

2. Next do any electrical work like adding outlets, adding overhead lights, down lights, switches, surround sound, security systems, etc.

3. Now start on your crown molding and trim around windows and doors. Any built ins that are going to be added would be built at this point by your finish carpenter. Once this is complete”…”

4. Paint the walls and trim, get the floors put down (assuming you are adding new pre-finished hard wood floors or carpeting).

Once the basics of construction are done, the same rules apply to decorating the space and making it homey, that is adding the colors, the patterns and the fluffy stuff that makes a house feel like a home.

1. Decide what the room is going to be used for and make a plan.

2. Select the furniture that makes sense for your family and your budget.

3. Pick out colors and patterns that work for the room, the style you want and for your family and pets.

4. Select window treatments or curtains to protect your new digs and soften the edges.

5. Hang artwork or wall décor to begin warming up the room and making it your own.

6. And lastly get some accessories and lamps to top it all off!

Guess what? You are done decorating!

The most important question for any decorating or home remodeling project is this: what do you want? When you can figure out what you want at the beginning and set yourself up on a plan, each step will fall in line (because you are organized and know exactly what you want), you will be able to make your budget (you can cut costs here and there and look for sales) and the whole project will come together effortlessly.

Decorating Home Gym Atmospheres Tips And Tricks

It is a common observation that one wishes to workout for attaining higher fitness levels, one needs to realize that the best possible method is to have your equipments accessible at all times. The better the reach of your gym, the more is the probability of your using it aptly.

The very reason that drives the people to own a gym at home is the independence and flexibility they feel they have in choosing their time to work out. Also they cut down on worries related to gym charges, parking fees and the enjoyment of just going out for exercising as and when one feels the need to.

Ways of Decorating Home Gym Atmosphere:

If one is interested in going ahead with setting up a home gym then one needs to spend some time on researching on the kind of equipment that is required that would match one’s requirements. One can also indulge in hiring the services of a trainer for this research. After procurement of suitable equipments one needs to pay attention towards enhancing the home gym atmosphere in order to ensure success in the task undertaken.

By creating a wall painting or posting some pictures on the wall that help you in working out are quite easy ways of decorating home gym atmosphere. One can have scenic pictures of outside world that comforts one and relaxes one during the process of exercising. The decoration should gel well with the personality of the person who is undergoing the task. These tips are simple and easy to follow but generally help in achieving the success one desires from workout sessions.

Another way of decorating Home gym atmospheres can be to remind oneself of the targets one has set for oneself by making a chart of those targets and posting it on the walls. Also if one has fixed some kind of reward, once he/she fulfills those goals then one can put up a picture of the reward as well. For e.g. one can put up pictures of a place one intends to pay a visit or a car that one plans to purchase once the desired goals are met.

Why Decorating Home Gym Atmosphere is essential?0

The basic point of decorating home gym atmosphere is development of such an environment that helps in motivation of the person involved in work out and makes him/her go for more of it to achieve better results. The baseline of decorating home gym atmosphere should be to keep the person on his/her feet to move ahead and work harder towards his/her target. Remember that it is you who shall be benefited out of the program and one should do the task in the best possible way to achieve the best possible benefits.

Simple Gardening Tips For Beginners

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If you are just beginning with gardening, don’t be afraid for it is not meant to be difficult. In fact, it can be so much fun much more than what you think. If you don’t know how to start, there is always an avenue of knowledge for you: your grandmother to assist you, informational books and magazines to read, and the internet to browse more information.

It used to be that gardening appeals only to the older folks. But nowadays, people of all ages, children, young adults, adults, and old folks alike, they see gardening as a refreshing and rewarding hobby to take. Why not? With all the benefits that you get, your being a busy, career person should never be used as a hindrance to start growing your own plants indoor or outdoor. You will see the big difference when you get to reap your own fruits of labors.

It doesn’t matter what you prefer. Would you like to have a bed of beautiful and colorful flowers, country garden full of wild flowers and shrubs, manicured lawn strategically placed with shrubs and little trees, or just a simple backyard with lots of pots and containers planted with grown plants? It isn’t a problem to start one because you can find lots of information on how you can start doing them. You can also ask questions and assistance from the experts.

For a starter, you will need these basic tools: trowel, spade, lawnmower, rake, and plants of your choice to grow. It would help a lot if you have some sort of garden plan based on the space that is available. In this way, it won’t be difficult for you to arrange some things like flower beds, lawns, paths, and on your garden bed or space.

The kinds of plants that you will grow will depend on what you want, the availability, and the climate that your location has. There are plants that grow only for the season but there are others too that can be cultivated to grow year after year. If you consider yourself a hobby gardener, then you would want to have plants that do not grow more than two seasons. These are perennial plants that allow you to tend to other things other than mere gardening.

If you don’t know what plants to start growing, you can always ask assistance from the local nursery available in your location. The experts from there should know what types would thrive specifically considering the climate in your area. And speaking of the local nursery, it is one avenue to buy plants you want on your garden. It is usually available with packets of seeds or small young plants for the beginners to grow. You can obtain them whether via online or mail order.

The small young plants are great choice if you want to have an automatic decorative display on your garden. Otherwise, choosing seeds to grow and watching them grow will provide great satisfaction from the accomplishment of having to cultivate and care for them. You can have the seeds planted on pots or containers, or you can plant them onto pre-designed bed of soil. Gardening should be this fun and exciting, and of course, rewarding, even if you are a beginner.

Gardening Tips for Early

Now we are fast approaching the hottest time of the year, there are still some things that can be done in the garden. Below are a few gardening tips for those that love the summer warmth. For you who aren’t particularly appreciative of the hot hot, then do your gardening chores early in the morning.

As the flowers in your garden start to fade, you should see seed pods begin to appear. What does this mean as far as the plant’s growth is concerned? How does it affect the appearance of your garden?

It means that the plant puts most of its resources towards the seeds and creating them. If the seed pods are allowed to remain, the plant will not continue to give you flowers like it would if the seeds were removed once the flowers go by. You could end up with a garden with lots of seeds and few blooms. This of course, depends on many factors. Therefore, faded flowers should be cut off. You can go around every day as you go about youyr gardening with some type of trimmers or scissors and cut off all the dead flowers. You can add this organic matter to your compost pile.

But,there are, of course, exceptions to every rule. There are a some plants that are grown because of their colored or shaped seed pods. Among these are the Chinese lanterns plants. It is a low-growing plant with white flowers that some may think are not as pretty as many other flowers, but when the flowers have gone by, balloon-like seed pods gradually appear. At first these are green, but in time they will change to a brilliant orange-red. They can be used in vases in the house throughout the winter to brighten the decor.

At this time of year, you might find a beautiful flower on some plant in your garden and you just want to save the seed. Tie a piece of string around the stem so you can identify it later and very carefully remove the other flowers from the plant as they fade. Then, when the seed is ready, you can cut the stem bearing the seed. After leaving it in a warm dry place for a few days, carefully separate out the seeds and put them away for another day. They should be kept perfectly dry. This is one technique towards creating your own special garden and an interesting gardening technique as well.

In some cases, it is a good plan to sow seed as soon as it is ready as it grows more quickly and more surely than seed that has been kept. For annuals, this may not be practical this late in the season. This, of course, depends upon your growing season, how long the individual plant actually takes to set seed and other factors. With perennials, you might be able to get a head start on next spring by planting the seed in a protected area for the winter. Maybe in a cold frame in a protected area. On the other hand, there are some seeds that just do not grow for a long time. Some seeds require a certain number of hours of cold temperatures or even below freezing temperatures before planting. You will have to research the individual plant you have seed from to see what is practical.

If you have carnations in your garden where the calyx has a bad habit of splitting, try these old time fixes. That’s the green portions that surrounds the petals. First stake each individual stem upright so it will not bend over. If that doesn’t work try putting tiny rubber bands around the calyx to prevent splitting. It could be fun explaining to guests your gardening technique here.

Keep watering, weeding and putting the mulch on the soil to the proper depth around your flowers, shrubs and trees as described in other articles on our website. Heed the warnings in those articles as well.

Roses have chores that should be done this month too. Be on the look out for suckers coming from the roses in your garden. Where roses grow on their own roots, maybe reared from cuttings, there should be no suckers at all. But many roses we buy have been grafted to a stronger root stock and sometimes this root stock will send out suckers. Any suckers from the roots, or from the stem below the graft, should be removed as far below the surface of the soil as possible carefully. (You may wish you could remove other suckers from your life as easily as with your gardening.

Also, at this time, rose budding can be done. It is a very interesting project. There are many points to learn and do. These are: the right stage at which to take a bud, how to trim the bud, how to make the cut for the bud and where, how to insert the bud and how to secure it. This topic will be covered in our gardening tips more fully at another time.

Decorative Garden Fence Materials

A decorative garden fence is more than just a boundary, it can provide protection for your precious plants and ornaments from various invaders. They can also be used to obscure undesirable features such as utility meters, HVAC equipment, or provide necessary privacy. Their use is not limited to aesthetics, as garden fences can be utilized to support legumes or other vine growing cultivars and even training topiaries. The myriad of designs offered compliment a wide range of applications and can range widely in price based on both materials and design. In choosing any decorative garden fence one must consider the location, as well as the surrounding elements to ensure it fits seamlessly into the landscape. The subsequent points will provide some general information about various decorative garden fencing options, their applications, and some helpful tips to get you started.


The oldest, and in many cases aesthetically pleasing material for a decorative garden fence is wood. Used for millennia, this readily available material can provide a simple elegant look for a more traditional home. Conversely there are also many designs that complement more modern architectural styles. From the traditional dog-ear to a more contemporary shadow box style, installation is relatively simple, materials readily available, and can be finished with either a nice stain or a fresh coat of paint. Maintenance is minimal, and quality materials will last for a long time to come.


Although generally less ornate than a fence made from wood, vinyl does provide many design options, reduced maintenance, and ease of assembly. In addition to lower maintenance requirements, vinyl fences are often more durable than other materials, and may be used in animal husbandry applications. Slightly more expensive than some of the other materials, vinyl quickly recoups the cost of initial investment over time.

Stacked Stone Walls

Stacked stone provides a quintessential country feel, and can be used as a dry stack (without mortar) or can be anchored with mortar and structural support to provide an effective barrier for the elements. Stacked stone makes an excellent decorative garden fence with many applications. Whether used as a single element to hold back a bank or hide an unsightly feature like a utility meter, a decorative stone fence is an asset to any outside decor. Due to the expense of both materials and labor, this can be a more expensive option. When you consider that both the Great Wall of China and Hadrian’s Wall across Britain are two prominent man made creations of the ancient world that still stand today, the durability of this method is clearly apparent.

Bamboo Fence

One of the newer materials to be used for fencing in this country is Bamboo. This plant (technically a tall Asian grass) is a renewable resource which makes it an economical and ecologically friendly alternative to some of the previously mentioned materials. The uses of bamboo vary widely. It is commonly used in screens that can be erected quickly and easily to provide privacy or shade, but is strong enough for many more demanding applications. It is the primary building material throughout Asia, where it is used in everything from houses to boats to livestock cages.

Helpful Hints

  • Locate boundary pins (contact county officials if necessary)
  • Always check with your homeowners association and deed restrictions
  • Contact your neighbors and make them aware of your plans (they may have helpful info)
  • Get multiple bids/estimates from known reputable contractors (at least 3)
  • Check to be sure that all necessary permits are on site, and get a copy of the contractors insurance just in case (liability and workmans comp if possible)

Interior Decorating Design Tip

It often comes a time when you feel that you feel the need for a change and the first thing that pops up your mind is decorating. So how do you know which style suits your house better? Is it contemporary or rustic? What you need is a great interior decorating tip that will help you throughout the process and turn your house into the dream home. The top 2007 interior decorating tip has to do with fantasizing, originality and the return to nature.

If this New Year’s resolution is redecorating your house here’s a good interior decorating tip: use a theme. Whether you choose to give your house a contemporary look, or keep to the rustic style, this year’s interior decorating tip almanac says that your house needs a personality of itself and choosing a theme for the rooms will make it more original and modern. You could use a professional interior decorating tip and choose a Bugs Bunny decorating theme for the nursery or a more traditional style for the dining room. But the essential is that you use this interior decorating tip with good taste and creativity.

But this new interior decorating tip strategy also refers to the outside look of your house. You can’t have a polished contemporary looking house that, on the outside, appears like a shipwreck. There are many brilliant ideas to choose from and an ABC of the interior decorating tip, ranging from embellishing your front door with a colorful doormat to making a statement about your personality with the use of color. Accordingly, you could find as a valuable interior decorating tip painting your house in the contemporary hues (cinnamon apple pie and cocoa brown) or, if you choose the rustic way, the back-to-nature color palette: yellow, soft greens and dark brown.

The contemporary style will let you innovate a lot, while the rustic counterpart will bring out the tranquility allure and natural feel. Another top interior decorating tip is that your home must be in harmony with your lifestyle. So, if you’re an active, playful and busy person who loves having friends over, you should probably pick this interior decorating tip: choose the spacious, airy and modern contemporary style. Likewise, if comfort defines you and you enjoy sitting on the sofa with a good book, the interior decorating tip to suit your character is choosing the rustic, many plants’ plain wood and mahogany furniture style for your house.

In conclusion, there is no single interior decorating tip, but several to choose from. What is important is that your house says a thing or two about yourself and that its exterior and interior are compatible. And remember, as long as you follow the mentioned interior decorating tip strategy above, you will soon be dreaming about many decorating possibilities. Because all it takes is some courage, time and a good interior decorating tip.

Some Tips to Bring Your Garden in Harmony With the Plants

Whatever the style of your garden, enhancing your lawn and garden decor with garden ornaments is a great way to complement the plants and bring a mature feel to any garden or back yard.

Terracotta pots on patios and terraces will enhance a Mediterranean arrangement, Classical statues and fountains will make a formal garden come alive and statues of an oriental divinity will effectively evoke a Japanese garden.

Features to Surprise

Some elements of surprise are welcome with any lawn and garden decor. A birdbath or a bird table installed at a turning in a path can be particularly eye catching.

For a touch of humor, place statues and ornaments in out of the way and out of the ordinary places. Tuck a tall bird statue away behind a clump of bamboos and let bronze frogs, snakes and hedgehogs cross a terrace or lurk in low ground cover. Allow a few jolly clay piglets to tumble down a flight of steps.

For a touch of romance, a shy nymph looks especially charming in any lawn and garden decor when glimpsed through sprays of roses and ivy.

Distracted by a Statue

An ornament urn or a statue placed slightly off center at the end of a lawn will make the garden appear larger and draw attention away from any shortcomings it may have.

Creating a Background

An evergreen backdrop to a statue or a fountain will make it stand out. The use of ivy, yew or box are especially effective for your lawn and garden decor.

Frost Resistance

Unless your containers are frost proof, make sure you bring them inside during the winter months. Those with garland decoration are particularly vulnerable as water can seep behind the garlands and freeze causing them to crack and flake off.

Raising The Level

When standing a potted plant inside a deep terracotta jar, raise it to the level of the rim of the jar by standing it on an upturned flower pot hidden inside the jar.

Home Gardening Tips For Beginners

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Gardening is a great hobby and wonderful pastime that people receive pleasure from worldwide. For all the time, hard work and effort put into designing, planting and maintaining a garden, a gardener’s reward is the beauty of lush, lovely gardens. It gives them a feeling of accomplishment and satisfaction looking at the plants and flowers they planted and the nurturing care they gave them. Many gardeners find working in their garden and getting close to Mother Nature a therapeutic, relaxing hobby that makes them forget about the stress and worry of everyday life. Gardeners also get a lot of exercise and a great deal of fresh air, which is an added bonus while they are doing something they have a passion for and love. Here are some gardening tips that can help you have a beautiful property and gardens.

· First time gardeners should begin small to make the experience enjoyable and successful. It is easier for a beginner to plan, plant and manage a small garden while learning the essential basics of plant care such as watering, fertilizing and the secrets of pest, weed and disease control. Once you master this, you can increase the size of your garden or create larger spaces. An overly large or ambitious gardening project for beginners that will require several weeks or even months to finish is a quick way to feel frustrated, upset and defeated. It is all right to think big but you should divide your gardening projects into small sections.

· Water is essential for a beautiful, successful garden but watering too frequently results in plants and grass with shallow root systems. The best way to water most plants is once or twice weekly but for a longer length of time so the soil becomes well soaked. Early morning watering is best because the plant and flower leaves will dry during the day and this will help prevent diseases such as fungal infections.

· Weed the garden thoroughly and then use an organic mulch to help prevent new weeds from appearing. Mulch also helps hold nutrition and water in and stabilizes the soils temperature.

· Use your own homemade compost to reduce costs and reuse the organic material from your garden, lawn clippings, kitchen and your fall leaves.

Gardening on a Slope

· For any areas of your property that are steeply sloped, stay away from planting grass or any type of garden that required maintenance such as cutting or weeding. Trying to look after plants or cut grass growing on a steep slope can certainly be dangerous. Instead, plant shrubs and trees that require no maintenance but will anchor the soil and slow water runoff. If you enjoy a garden with a natural look, sow wildflowers, plant tall perennial grasses or even groundcover but make sure its maintenance free.

· For shaded slopes, shade-loving perennials such as hostas, some types of ground cover, ferns and low growing vines will look great but also help prevent erosion.

· Rock gardens are another alternative as they help establish a secure foundation.

Reading and learning about basic gardening tips will help you grow the garden of your dreams. Selecting the right patio furniture and outdoor decor will add to the beauty and provide you with the perfect place to enjoy your garden.

Three Great Gardening Tips For Your Flower Gardens

These gardening tips are a must for anyone who wants a beautiful and healthy garden. If you are not implementing them now, you many want to. You will no longer wonder why others gardens always seem to look better than yours.

Provide Structure for Beauty

Before you think this gardening tip is too structured, read on. The next time you see a garden that makes you stop and look, ask yourself why it attracts your attention so much. If you look closely, you will likely discover that the garden has well-defined structures, borders and outlines.

How can you do this with your garden if you haven’t already? Are there any paths you can line with small stones? Is there some water you can put a bridge over? Is there some place you can build a small wall?

Think of beautiful gardens not so much as just flowers, but rather structures lined with flowers. I drive by a house everyday that has an old rowboat in their front yard they use to surround with flowers. They also put flowers in the boat. It looks great!

Use Structures That Already Exist

What natural structures already exist in your yard? Are there any trees or fences? How about some huge rocks or stones? Before you create manmade structures, first make sure you decorate the ones you have with flowers.

Has your neighbor put up a fence on the border of your property? Use your side of the fence as a structure to build around. Just make sure that you stay on your side of the fence.

How about the foundation of your house? Have you planted it yet? Before you do, just make sure your gutters are up-to-date. During the next rainfall, pay attention to how the water flows. You don’t want to plant something only to have it washed away.

Don’t Use Chemicals

This gardening tip is not only good for your garden’s health, but for yours as well. Are you dealing with pesky bugs eating all your plants and flowers? If so, you may be tempted to use pesticides. Before you do, see what you can do on your own. Many pest species can be washed away with a garden hose.

Do some research on the predators of the bugs that are giving you trouble. If you can, introduce those predators into your garden. They will eat the bugs.

Use compost you make yourself instead of manmade chemical ones. It will be much better for your garden and much cheaper for you. If you are not composting, start right away. There is no better use for your biodegradable waste.

There are more gardening tips where these came from. In the meantime, first look around your yard and ask yourself what existing borders could use some flowers along them. If there are not any, then create some. Finally, ditch the chemicals and go natural.

Indoor Gardening Tips

Indoor gardening is a fantastic way to bring nature inside your home and brighten up your rooms. They are not only a wonderful finishing touch when decorating any room but most people find plants and flowers relaxing, beautiful and soothing to look at. They are nature’s natural purifier, as plants cleanse the air by changing carbon dioxide into oxygen. It really does not matter if you choose exotic, common or tropical plants because their natural, fresh beauty makes any room feel cozy and warm. Here are some great indoor gardening tips on caring for your plants that help the plants remain lovely and healthy.

Light to a plant is like food to us. It is a necessary element, that all plants need, or they will gradually die. Every plant requires different lighting to grow properly, so when you are shopping for houseplants, a few indoor gardening tips are, check how much light the plant requires and the best location. Some require bright or direct sunlight so place your plant near a south facing window. For plants requiring indirect sunlight, make sure you place them close to the window but far enough away to keep their leaves from burning. You can place low light plants anywhere in a room as long as there is a little natural light. A few varieties of plants that require medium or low light and look beautiful in any room are African violets, philodendrons and Boston ferns.

Here are some indoor gardening tips on watering your houseplants. People often kill their plants with kindness by over-watering them, which makes the plant more susceptible to disease and insects. This also leads to the roots rotting. Find out the watering needs of each plant and then invest in a water gage that tells you the moisture level of the soil. These are inexpensive and certainly helpful when it comes to deciding whether to water or not. The following indoor gardening tips make a difference on how healthy your plant remains. When you bring a new plant home, such as an African violet, it looks fabulous for a little while and then it stops blooming and the leaves start turning yellow and falling off. Growers and nurseries use fertilizer to encourage the plants to grow quickly to sell them. Most people take them home and do not fertilize them, so the plant does poorly. Find out what each plant needs and fertilize them according, using a good all-purpose fertilizer.