Every year you can count of color palettes
changing, even if only so slightly. And this year is no different than any
other. We've been heavily influenced lately with overtones of purple, green,
orange, red and neutrals. And the trend continues for 2011, however there are
changes within each category.
For instance, the plum colors are darkening and becoming closer to that of
berries. Green is shifting from citrus to lettuce. Orange is going from bright
orange to burnt orange. Red is taking on a cherry attitude. And neutrals will be
more heavily influenced by metallic and gray.
you're thinking about switching things up, look for the oh so subtle changes in
the color families and you'll be right up to date. Vary the percentages that you
use and mix tints and shades together for a more interesting blend that is
exciting and challenging.
more indepth discussion about 2011 Color Trends, consider getting my updated Color Trends Report.
Flooring Materials? What to Choose.
Flooring is a serious decision, mainly because of its cost but also the
difficulties of getting product installed. So obviously you don't want to make
any mistakes. But it's also a complex subject. But it is a good time to consider
upgrading because manufacturers have bent over backwards to improve their
products without increasing the costs to consumers.
Little waste during installation
No harmful "volatile organic compounds"
Needs to be resealed every 2 years
Sweep and wash with vinegar or gentle floor cleaner
Granite - durable and resistant to staining; good for kitchens
Marble - elegant, durable, beautiful; must be sealed and cleaned
Limestone - not recommended for heavy traffic areas; can scratch and
Travertine - porous; requires resealing; less durable than granite or
Slate - water-resistant; ideal for outdoor applications
Ceramic - durable, glazed or sealed, not damaged by water
Porcelain - easy to clean, long lasting, moisture resistant
Terra Cotta - rustic, weathered look; lasts longest when sealed
Hardwood - environmentally friendly; look for FSC seal to be sure lumber
is from sustainable, managed forest
Bamboo - very durable, dent resistant, flame-resistant; can be nailed
down or glued down or floated
Cork - rapidly renewable material, doesn't kill trees; great acoustic
properties, blocks sound, keeps space quieter; spongy for less fatigue when
standing long times; resilient against marks, fire resistant and
Carpet - adds warmth, style, texture, softness; hides sub-floor
irregularities; install over most surfaces; offers more options
10 Ways to Save More & Waste Less
Here are some eco-friendly tips to help you save:
Designate a family member each week to make sure lights are turned out
when leaving or not being used.
Reduce odors by using baking soda, especially in refrigerator.
Keep windows locked to improve seal and prevent leaks of warm or cooled
Boil water faster by using a lid on pan.
Turn off dishwater before dry cycle and let things air dry.
Look for concentrated products that last longer.
Stock up on extra supplies each month as costs are going up.
Send kids to school with litter-less lunches in reusable containers.
Reduce Your Clutter; Clear Out Stuff
Every year it seems like my storage needs double in size. I admit I'm a bit
of a packrat. But I can't keep "kicking the can down the road" like our
politicians are doing with the country's debt. Sooner or later there always
comes a day of reckoning. Here are some tips that can help others as well as
your de-cluttering needs:
Donate old blankets, thick towels, linens to animal shelters for the
Donate unused furniture to National Furniture Bank Association that gives to
victims of hurricanes, floods and earthquakes. Also helps victims of abuse and
those below poverty levels.
World Computer Exchange is a nonprofit that donates your old computers
and equipment to disadvantaged kids in more than 65 countries. Make sure you
strip them of all personal data first.
National Cristina Foundation (cristina.org) donates equipment to charities
Handheld electronic gaming devices are most cherished by military troops
overseas. Contact Games for Heroes (gamesforheroes.com).
Get-Well Gamers Foundation (getwellgamers.org) distributes to 40 children's
Dress for Success (dressforsuccess.org) donates clothing to
disadvantaged women and helps them find employment.
Donate old prom dresses to DonateMyDress.org.
Brides Against Breast Cancer (bridesagainstbreastcancer.org) takes
wedding gowns, slips and veils. Proceeds go to MakingMemories.org.
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