The Perils of Online Decorating Advice

Like most everyone, I go online to look for new ideas that I can use to make my life and interior design business better. Last week I was poking around on the internet looking for ideas about upgrading drapery hardware for curtains and drapes. And, frankly I was appalled at what I saw. Large name-brand stores and specialty websites doling out advice to consumers that if followed, would be a tremendous waste of their time and money! I must admit, it made me cringe! I’ve listed a few examples of what ‘so-called’ decorating experts recommend you do to upgrade your drapery hardware.

1. Upgrade your window treatments by wrapping copper wire around silk flower stems and then wrap them around your drapery rod. (Yikes!)

2. Use PVC pipe and spray paint it? (Not a very ‘Green’ solution.)

3. Find a tree branch from your backyard and use that as your rod. (Ok, I suppose if I was Grizzly Adams this might look good to me.)

In my book, those 3 ideas aren’t upgrades to your drapery hardware. They’re 80′s style make-do’s that are toxic and about 3 decades too late!

Today’s drapery hardware is sophisticated, elegant and combines both function and beauty all in one treatment.

So you may be asking yourself, why would I want to upgrade my drapery hardware? Stop for a minute and think about why you’d upgrade ANY product you own. There are usually two main reasons -

1. Add more features or better functioning – Something isn’t working anymore. Think about your car. When the old one has stopped working or keeps breaking down, it’s time to get a new one.

2. Add beauty, to bring it into today’s style – Think of your wardrobe. Although it wasn’t tattered and falling off of me, if I was still wearing the same style clothes that I wore in college (do you remember those Capri pants that nearly went up to your ribcage?), I’d be the laughing stock of colleagues, family, friends, etc.

Upgrading your drapery hardware is no different, it covers both reasons -

1) It adds greater functionality with all the great features, bells, whistles and options available to you today.

2) It adds tremendous value, style and beauty to your home. Adding new hardware to an existing drapery treatment can easily transform any room and you don’t even have to change your drapes! If they’re still in decent shape, keep the drapes but upgrade the hardware.

Go from having skimpy, drooping, entirely too small drapery rods, to exquisite, carved, substantial and stunning hardware that will bring years of enjoyment and satisfaction to your home. It’s simple to do and promises to create a phenomenal transformation in your room. It could be just the thing you need!

Protecting Children From Furniture Tipovers

As parents, we put our all into making our homes safe for our children. We keep chemicals and medicines out of reach, place locks and covers on cabinets, toilet lids, and electrical outlets. We are careful about everything, and every one, that comes into our home. Yet despite our best efforts, some dangers remain.

Recent tragedies and the resulting recalls of products manufactured for children have made us look hard at everything our children touch. In an effort to protect my own child, I have been scouring recall lists and other safety information. Along the way, I made a shocking discovery. One of the top hidden dangers for children is something we all have in our homes: furniture. In fact, furniture tipovers are #3 on the list of hidden dangers for children according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, right behind magnets and recalled toys.

While numbers vary according to the reporting agency, each year thousands of people are injured from falling furniture. Many of these injuries are sustained by children; some of them fatal. For a truly heartbreaking story, visit the Lambert family’s website. The Lamberts lost their beautiful daughter when a wardrobe fell on her in her bedroom. In her memory the family has launched a website and a campaign to educate the public about the dangers of furniture tipovers.

As the mother of an active 2-year-old, I know how fast things can go wrong. The doorbell rings, the pot boils over, the buzzer on the dryer beckons, and the child who was playing quietly when I left the room might be climbing the bookshelf when I return. Most tipover accidents occur, in fact, when a child is alone. But we know it is impossible to watch a child every second of the day, and children need places in the home where they are completely safe, even alone, for a few moments. Home is their haven, the place to explore and experience their first taste of independence.

They have lobbied congress to put warnings on furniture that could easily tip over on a child. But warnings notwithstanding, only parents can make sure our children are safe from harm. While there is no way to eliminate every danger a child faces, below are a few tips to help make your home and furnishings as safe as possible.

TVs: TVs are interesting, awkward, and heavy, perfect candidates for little climbers. Make sure you place them low to the ground on a stable piece of furniture. And never put remote controls, favorite DVDs, or anything else that might tempt a child on top of the TV.

Placement of Toys: This “temptation factor” applies to the whole home. Never put toys, pictures, or any coveted items in a position that will encourage a child to climb on a bookshelf, a dresser, or any unstable surface.

Heavy Objects: Never place heavy objects like books or speakers on top shelves. Put them low on the shelves, or secured in cabinets.

Discourage Children from Climbing on Furniture: It is easier for a child to understand “never” than to discern which piece of furniture might be dangerous.

Purchasing New Furniture: When possible, choose furniture that is set on a wide, sturdy base, rather than legs. Test it to see if it will tip over by pushing on edges.

Pack Dressers from Bottom Up: This way it will be bottom-heavy instead of top-heavy.

Secure Furniture with an Anti-Tip Device: Some items, like dressers, wardrobes, bookshelves and hutches, cannot be secure on their own. For such furniture, purchase an anti-tip device. Examples of anti-tip devices include safety straps, “L” brackets or the Hangman Anti-Tip Kit.

Sheila Gallien is a noted screenplay consultant who also writes articles on picture hanging and home and workplace organizing systems in her spare time.

Sliding Wardrobe Door Kits

Wardrobe sliding door kits have floor plinths, strike plates and also safety with design which everyone desire in a door. We buy door kits so that the area shouldn’t be wasted while installing door or you will not be worried about ceiling and wall to wall ceiling. If you are installing the door and you don’t have space at the top of the door you can install the bottom rolling so that it will utilize the available floor area.

In the market there are two type of kit available. One is rustic kit and other is modern kit. The rustic flat track sliding door kit is best for door hardware if you are using it for exterior application, while modern kit is perfect for interior uses. Sliding, bi-fold and bypass doors can be purchased with the kits, these comes with all the material needed to install door, However most of the companies will not provide you kits and you have to buy these kit separately.

Sometimes when people think about security, however there are many options available for the customer, kits which make your door more powerful and you can also use steel door beside the wood because steel is more durable than wood. There are many advantages of steel doors. If you are using the wood door then variation in temperature and rain can damage your doors and if you are using the steel doors there will be no danger of these factors.

In the market a wide range of sliding door kits are available but only you have to choose what exactly you are looking for. If you are looking for quality product then you have to spend more money as higher price give your door a good look and durability. Before buying the door kits you can do some research about the kits so that you can know what it is in the market according to your budget.

12 Fall Trends – Integrate Style Trends Into Your Wardrobe

Each season women are perplexed by new trends they see in the stores and magazines. Professional women are looking for an easy way to update their look by adding these new ideas. Many women are not sure what to buy. This fall season sees a return of the sophisticated elegant looks from the 1940′s-bold, shouldered suits and the classic touch of a hat and gloves worn with a tailored coat. When you shop this season follow these 12 trends. Be sure to find the trends that resonate with your signature style to update your fall wardrobe.

1). Cozi Cardi’s

The cardigan is the new alternative to the jacket. Styles vary from big chunky knits to long sweater coats. One of the hottest looks of the season is the cardigan worn with a belt, a tailored shirt and dress pants for a smart business casual ensemble.

2). Retro Suit

The suit trend is about curves with the waistline accentuated by belts. Pinstripe suits return. Their vertical lines make you appear slender and tall. Be prepared: suits with strong shoulders reminiscent of the 40′s are making a comeback.

3). Shine On

Shine returns with striking metallic hues-gunmetal, titanium, platinum, bronze, copper, and old antique gold. Fabrics with sheen and shimmer can be worn day or night. Choose sequins and radiant satins to add sparkle to your holiday gala apparel.

4). Graphic Designs

Geometric prints and color blocking continue to be high fashion for blouses, dresses, and coats. Add one or two of these prints to your wardrobe, but be cautious. One geo print goes a long way!

5). Old Country Fabrics

Texture in fabrics reappears this season. Retro looks show old country fabrics-tweeds, hound’s-tooth, tartan plaid and herringbone.

6). It’s About Hue

Color is back. This season if you wear black, wear it with colors like burgundy, claret or red. Grey is another classic color for fall. It looks fabulous when worn with black to soften the look. Green is the hot color of the season, in hues from turquoise, kelly, forest, and teal.

7). Born to Be Wild!

Exotic animal prints and skins appear in clothing, handbags, belts, bracelet cuffs, and shoes. Use an animal print to accent a neutral suit to look stylish and chic. Remember to only wear one animal print at a time.

8). Zipped Up

Zippers are the hardware of the season. Zippers will be on everything-clothing, handbags, shoes, and gloves.

9). Belt Driven

The wide belt is the hottest accessory for fall. These big belts come in an array of styles from quilted, colored leather obi belts, and leather belts trimmed with multiple buckles. This must-have of the season is a great accessory to dress up a look and create an hourglass shape.

10). Get a Patent

Patent leather is the new accent trim on jackets, tops, dresses, and coats. This high gloss leather is also on accessories like handbags, belts, watches, and shoes.

11). Arm Glam

Everyone will be gazing at your arms this fall. So, show off your bangles. Whether you feel comfortable wearing several bangles, large cuff bracelets, or a pair of leather gloves-your arms have the attention. Gloves make a return. They are beautifully detailed with buttons and patent leather trims.

12). Step Above

Shoes for the season include colorful, shiny, metallic, and textured leathers. Key styles are wedges, crocodile heels, stilettos, ankle boots, and tall boots. On your next shopping trip, try on a few of these latest trends to see which ones work for you. By incorporating these trends, all appropriate for all ages, you will look more modern and receive multiple compliments on your updated stylish image.

Sarah Hathorn is a certified image consultant, speaker, and corporate image advisor. Illustra Image Consulting works with individual men and women who wish to update their fashion and professional presence. The company also provides corporate image services to organizations that wish to enhance their corporate brand within the marketplace.

What Kind of Computer Hardware Will You Need For Your Future Virtual Reality Living Room?

Virtual Reality technologies are moving ahead as fast as most of the modern day science like alternative energy, BioTech, Nanotech, Super Computers, or Artificial Intelligence. Not too far off into the future you will be able to sit in your living room and eating your dinner and drinking red wine sitting at Jesus’ Last Supper, you’ll be able to blast off with the Space Shuttle, watch the Roman Gladiators in a 2200 year old stadium or sit down with the past President of your choice for coffee. All in virtual reality and it will be so real, you’ll forget where you actually are.

So, what technologically advanced hardware will you need to accomplish this, what sort of computer hardware will your living room have in it? Well, you’ll have a few holographic projection units, several large flat panel screens of very thin material which will double as your wallpaper. You will have a special scent machine that will deliver the aroma that fits the scene; I hope you are not planning on milking cows in your virtual reality living room, peeyooo!

You will also have a modern day sound synthesizer with something similar to today’s surround sound units. The first generation of this highly evolved technology will include helmets and a good amount of augmented reality technologies. But the later versions will not require the cumbersome helmet display units. Of course, to truly be authentic, you might want to brush up on your foreign languages, which you can also learn full immersed in the foreign city of your choice while learning at home.

Lastly, you will want to have a cool wardrobe of clothing that can camouflage itself for the scene. Indeed, you will become a character in your own virtual reality movie. You can be anything, go anywhere, live any life, without leaving home. Pretty cool isn’t it?