Do you have enough space for a kitchen island

We all want beautiful things and to add to this list of unending items, you can now add, kitchen islands. They look amazing and everyone interested in doing up their kitchen is asking about them or wants to make changes to their kitchen to accommodate one of them. Islands have been making things convenient ever since we started dumping people who are a menace to society on them, in your kitchen too, if they are well places, they can make work a lot more convenient. More people would be allowed to move around in a kitchen without coming in the way of the other.

The same goes if the situation had been turned upside down. If the island in your kitchen has not been planned properly, it might be a hassle as it would keep getting in the way, hindering work. Sometimes they could have been perfect in the area they have been placed in, but the kitchen is too small to accommodate them causing a giant inconvenience.

Here are a few tips to help you figure out whether you have enough room for an island in your cooking area or not.

There is no standard size

You would not find a standard size of island for your kitchen. You have to realize that islands change in style, size and design, depending on the kitchen, and how large it is. You can always settle for a smaller island or a slight change in the design. Companies would be happy to change the type of island to suit your needs.

Clearance and sufficient space

When you are communicating with the people who will be modifying your cooking or dining area or the company providing the material for your island, you have to make sure your measurements are accurate. You have to consider how many people would be staying in that house, how many people usually move around the kitchen and so on. If you are looking at blueprints, you have to verify that they haven’t added any new additions to the already existing blueprints, sometimes they might not show on paper. You have to account for the gaps that have to be big enough for someone to walk through and not just enough for people to squeeze through.

Safety

Making sure people in a kitchen are safe is an impossible task since we already know, the kitchen is the most accident prone room in the house. You have to make sure no one gets stuck in a corner when the island has been set up. Account for all the cabinets and make sure that everything opens safely. You have to make sure that you create a proper view all around as well, the last thing you would want is for someone tripping on something lying open in a corner on the floor.

Making an island from scratch

You can ask your designer if they are capable of making the island from scratch. This would be an interesting task and would be able to match the designs of the rest of your kitchen. You can come up with something innovative to accommodate all your needs. This is usually done when you have a kitchen that is too large or small for the standard size chart.

Smaller islands

You can have an island that is small enough to fit in your kitchen but serves the purposes of having an island, with all the cabinets and can be used as a table top for cooking or mixing. You could have a tiny counter in the kitchen, with its own drawers, cabinets you can store your stuff in.

Add an island that does more than it should

Islands are specifically designed for storing items in their cabinet and creating an additional table top in the kitchen, other than the style they provide. You don’t have to stick to the standard though, and can easily use your island to create new alternatives, like reshaping the top to be your dining table. Everyone can eat around it.

Everything should be symmetrical

You should always account for everything being in the right proportions since that usually makes everything look better. You can have a table exactly in the center of your kitchen making sure that it divides everything properly so and have that as a new island and a dining room, remember that this should be done only with the larger kitchens.

Peninsulas also work

If you can get an island, you can always create an island that touches a counter or wall on one side, of course it would no longer be called an island. Kitchen peninsulas are the next best thing and they are catching up. They help you divide your cookery in separate sections.

How to make your home more eco friendly

When asked if you can make your house ecofriendly, without considering much the answer is, yes, you can. You have to take a lot of things into consideration though, and the cost of converting an already built house to an ecofriendly one is one of them. Some of the changes are easier than and not as expensive as the others. Further, a lot of these changes can be taken care of easily if you thought about them before you began the construction of the house. If you are looking at major changes to the electricals of space, ensure you consider speaking to architect or design consultant.  Changing all your lights to LEDs is relatively simple as opposed to getting a green roof or solar panels on your roof and having everything re piped to accommodate the new water heater.

Here are some relatively simple idea to help you reduce carbon foot print.

Triple glazing

Glazing is the idea where you add layers of glass a top each other instead of a roof. Most people use single or double glazing which is fine, but you would have to invest in redoing it, and it would just be smarter to think about that investment in the beginning and get a triple glazing done to begin with. Yes again, this cost more than double glazing but the returns are definitely worth it, where you would save on your energy bills and you would not have to replace it as often since you have the protection of an additional layer

Getting better ventilation and heating

Radiators are out of date in this day and age and they consume too much energy. A better and efficient way of getting your house heated is to use the underfloor heating. You would notice that this saves you a lot more money on your energy bills.

There are ways to use the heat and stale air that is leaving your house to heat the cool air that is coming into your house so again you would not end up spending money to heat air that is leaving your house.

Cover all your gaps

It is interesting that we have so many gaps throughout the house to help circulate the air but surprisingly you are paying to heat this air and after spending all that money losing it. This is an issue and you should try insulating the gaps and there are many creative ways of doing this. You can do this using a lot of creative tactics, like ferns, plants and so on.

A lot of the heat is absorbed through our walls and escapes, if you want to prevent this from happening, you should try insulating the exterior walls of you house.

Try the new in thing in lights

LED lights are the new thing in lights and can help you save so much on lighting. The lights in general cost a lot more than your ordinary lights, but they last longer and save on your electricity bill. Further, you would not need to replace your LED for about a decade, that doesn’t just save on the wastage but also on your time and energy as well.

Solar energy you say

If you are located in an area that receives a lot of sunlight, this is the thing for you. You should install solar panels to the south facing roof and this can help you save tons on water heaters and your energy bill. They have to be at an angle so would need to have a sloping roof, or would have to place them on stands.

Use contemporary materials

Depending on where you stay, you need a roof that either gives out or traps heat, tiles are made for a lot of air to pass through and this means you would lose a lot of heat through this. If you are paying for your heat, it means you are paying for something that is escaping. If you need to trap heat in, you should try something like asbestos sheets for your roof over tiles and these keep the heat in the house.

Adding a garden on your roof

Yes, this is something that is done as well, it’s a brave new world. You can explore your creative side in designing this space to bring it to life, a cozy little space to call your own.Instead of adding tiles to your roof, you can add something that works a little better, creating a roof of plants. Depending on your budget, you can go for something that you would barely need to inspect, or something that would last. You can do this by creating a sloping roof, and adding plants on it.  .This would prevent any heat from escaping from the roof, and it looks just lovely. You would have to inspect it though, to make sure it isn’t leaking, otherwise you would have all that water in your house. This also prevents water running down when it rains and would work well for you and maintain your garden without much effort from your end.

The smartest ways to use lighting in your house

There is a saying about hiding a candle or leaving it to be seen by everyone, so ideally no one usually hides lights when they are setting them up in their homes. However, using hidden light can work wonders when you want to get everyone’s attention to specific points in any room. You can use hidden light to illuminate certain areas of your house as well. If you haven’t done this yet and are considering hiding your lights, here are a few suggestions.

Headboard

If you have a wall mounted headboard, you can add your lights behind it. That would create an amazing effect and can be used as reading lights as well. Further, you can make this look better by adding a headboard that is larger than the width of the bed.

Staircase

It would be amazing to have your staircase light up under every step, something you don’t see very often. You can use this to create an interesting illusion and lead the way by adding lights under ever step to light the one below. This would look exceptionally amazing if the rest of the house didn’t have any light.

Ceiling

I am not referring to the top of the ceiling though, I am talking about the edge where the walls of the room almost touch the ceiling. Many rooms have a crevice between the actual roof and this area and it is an amazing place to hide lights to give the roof that glowing effect.

Bathroom wall

Some bathrooms have a wallwith all the piping, taps and shower heads, this wall doesn’t reach the ceiling, but is large enough to reach higher than you. You could find a creative way to add lights to this and see the amazing effect it creates in your bathroom

Islands in the kitchen

You can use lights at the bottom to light the base of your platforms and separate platforms in your cooking area. If you are adding lights to the bottom, you should remember to have these lead somewhere, like a continuous path. You can also use the lights right below the ceiling, to light up the area.

Driveway

You could have lights behind pillars in your driveway and they could lead all the way up to your house. You can find creative ways of doing this as well, like lighting specific trees in your yard to lead the way to your house. You could even have the way from your garage to your house lit up by lights in the floor.

Basin

You can find a creative way of adding lights right below the porcelain under the basin, if these are bright enough, you can use this to light everything up. This light can be used if you are using the mirror to shave, or for all the other reasons you could use a mirror, while washing your hands.

Walkway

You can have lights on the walkway between the furniture in your living room, like under the couch and in the other crevices below the television set or finally even under the cupboard.

How to maintain privacy with window decorations

No matter the beautiful view you have or the worst, the amazing neighbors, or the not so great ones, the walls of the next house or their amazing view, giant glass windows give us that weird feeling that we are constantly being watched. As luck would have it, we have a ton of solutions for you right here.

Swedish blinds and other accessories

If you feel that you have a view you aren’t going to look through very often, you can use Swedish blinds. The blinds themselves are pretty good looking so you won’t want to part your blinds anyway. You have to maintain a thin compromise between light and the amount you want to see outside. Pick an opaque fabric that isn’t too see through, but should completely block out the sunlight if you add two layers of it together. You can find two variations of the blinds, ones that remain where they are, and the other ones that fold and can be rolled up whenever required.

Use your imagination

You can make these yourself, where you can create and use any colors and your imagination, as long as it goes with the rest of the room. You would have to measure and attach a piece of wood to the top of the window. Next, you can take a bit of blind fabric and hem the edges so you don’t have any strings hanging. Create a pocket on one side so you can push it through your makeshift palmate. And stitch it in place.

One way blind

Sometimes you may have an amazing view out your window but one that leaves you exposed, you could see the view of a park, which means that they can see you too, in such a case you would need a one way blind. You have to remember that you would be completely visible at night through these blinds because the light inside your room would create shadows on the outside, which would mean everyone would be able to see you there.

Blinds without a lining

A new style that has been turning heads through living rooms all over the place. Roman blinds keep everything guarded from passer-bys, while making sure your room does not look too heavy.

Sometimes drapes do the trick

If you have curtains, the thin ones that are usually made out of muslin or similar materials, you could use these. You would need to connect a pelmet above the window frame, connect your drapes to it, and you are sorted.

If horizontal blinds don’t do the trick, go for vertical

Ideal if you have windows or panes that open from the outside, you don’t have a choice but to go with vertical ones as horizontal blinds would get in the way and mess everything up. You would find that these blinds can be greatly adjusted, to accommodate your window perfectly. Further, they would provide you with the privacy you need and reduce the reflection on your screens on the inside of your room.

Creating your own shutters

Wooden shutters can provide a great extent of privacy, while adjusting them to the right angle would also let the right amount of light enter your room. You have to pay attention to how long you intend to keep your house open, and how much of your window you would want to cover. These blinds are ideal for covering the bottom half of the window.

Work on the window instead

If you think blinds are getting to you, with their hundred and one options, and their different styles and so on, you can get your window worked on using, panes that aren’t see through. You can now get a huge line up of different types of panes, and companies even provide custom designs, if you know what you are looking for. You would find that a lot of these films for your window are moisture resistant, so you can save a few bucks if you use this for your bathrooms as well.

There you have it, a few affordable solutions to block out different areas of your house from prying eyes. You can try something a little classy as well, but you would have to dig a little deeper into your pocket.

Reasons why you should work from home

Everyone would love to work from home but most of our bosses would complain if we do, we barely get anything done. This is actually true with the number of comforts we have in our houses, and the number of things we have to do around the home, we would not get work done, and would be running around with our household chores. If you could have your own office at home, you would find this easier to do, but you would have to have it free of distractions and so on.

Here are some innovative changes that have been made to home workspaces that would enable you to get a lot more done.

Spacious

If you are a creative person or just one of those people who doesn’t like clutter, you would prefer a work space that has a lot of room. You have to keep to the basics and nothing more, and remember to arrange everything in such a way so you have a lot of room and empty room to walk around when you want to come up with a new idea.

Some view of the garden

For many people, me especially, looking at the outdoors helps you get better inspired. If you have a garden, you could even have your work room facing your garden, you can have a glass wall to give you a constant view of the greenery. If you can have a balcony added, you can even work from there to be close to the outdoor.

You can have an outhouse

Sometimes working in the same environment where you live may be hard so building a small room or outhouse just as an office might work well for you. Many people complain that working in the same area as their home is unproductive so this is their alternative.

Above and beyond

If you like, you can even convert the loft to your special room so you can be away from all the happenings of your house. Many productive freelancers have their lofts changed and turned into office spaces and these are very convenient for everyone, since sometime your work might actually be getting in the way of your family instead of being the other way around.

Rules

You have to have strict rules about your work space for your family and likewise for yourself. If they are rules that means you cannot break them either. To avoid distractions and ants or roaches some people say, no food in the office, and they would go to their kitchen. You might yell at your kids for doing this, but that means you should do the same and not eat there. It is very easy to keep working when your office is in your house, you should also stress on working hours. After which you have to spend time with your family.

Shady won’t work well for you

It is very productive to have an office that is well lit, many people like the dark and shady office and they feel that the darkness gives them better focus at their screens. In theory, a study conducted stated that people are more productive when they use brighter lit rooms. Here too the line should be drawn, if your lights are too bright you might end up hurting your eyes.

Add notes to your wall

Many people like to think out loud, if you are one of these people, you could have white boards on your walls, or black ones. Another creative idea is sticking thick sheets of paper on your walls and whenever you have an idea, you write it on the way. After you are done with that project, you can take all those pieces of paper down and do this over for the next project.

Don’t forget to take a break

All work and no play makes jack a dull boy, and so you should remember to take a break whenever you need a new perspective and then get back to work. Just because you are working from home, you don’t have to be too hard on yourself, you are allowed breaks as long as you are getting your work done and not slacking more than working.