Thursday, October 31, 2013

Can I Have Both a Fireplace Door and a Modern Fireplace Screen?

The answer to this question depends on a number of things, and can be addressed if you know the difference between these two. The term fireplace door and fireplace screen are two of the most commonly interchanged terms when it comes to fireplaces. Hence, it would be helpful if we briefly tackle the respective function of each this two fireplaces. Using either one of these two can be appropriate for most fireplaces, depending on what you are looking to achieve. But installing both of them in your fireplace can have some advantage.
Reviewing the Function of a Fireplace Door
A fireplace door only serves a single function. They are installed not to serve as protective covers but to preserve the warmth or coolness of the room. During the cold months when the fireplace is used, this door prevents heat from escaping out of the chimney and wasting energy in the process. Further, during the hot summer months when air conditioning is used, the fireplace door will prevent the cool air inside the room from dissipating outside via the chimney.
What is the Function of a Fireplace Screen?
On the other hand, the modern fireplace screen is used as protective covers. As you might already know, these are mesh-type installations that are used to prevent something from passing through, except for wind or air. Even when a fine mesh is used, air will still pass through. With this said, fireplace screens are used to prevent sparks or burning embers from splashing into the living room where they can damage or even burn something. So when a fireplace is burning, the screens will have to be closed, as opposed to the doors that need to be opened.

Below are some great fireplace screen choices that might interest you.

With their primary functions along, we can already determine which one can be used for a specific purpose. If you are after energy conservation, a fireplace door would be appropriate. On the other hand, if you want to put emphasis on safety and not much on preserving energy, then a fireplace screen would be a better choice. But whichever you choose, your fireplace will be transformed into a nice and cozy place where you can lounge and keep warm in. However, if you have the budget and inclination to have the best of both worlds, why not use both?

Monday, October 28, 2013

Create a Modern Foyer (When There Isn't One)

There is something about coming into a home that has a foyer, vestibule or entryway. It is like the welcoming committee for the rest of our house. However, not everyone’s home or apartment is blessed with such a space. But this is not a hopeless case. You can still create the feeling of a foyer.

The primary thing to remember is that you will either need a visual or physical barrier. A visual barrier gives the viewer décor to instantly view in the front door area, while a physical barrier literally blocks the view of the rest of the home. These two will separate and set the entryway apart from the rest of the house.
Even when it is only a few square feet, give your home a place where you and your guests can pause before entering the rest of the house. Here are some tips to teach you how.
Make it organized and pretty. If you only have a single wall hear the front door and no console or coal closet, compact helpers should perfectly work here.
If it is compact, make an impact. A sleek and slim shelf like the Cato Entryway Shelf by Uttermost topped with a gallery wall of precious photo will make for a magnificent statement. The drawers below will then hold keys, gloves, dog’s leash and more.

Define with molding. Give the spot its own personality by framing the wall you will use. This should draw attention to it.
Define with wallpaper. Accent wallpaper creates a dramatic statement that can be fun for a transition space.
Define with wainscoting. Traditional wood panels or easy-to-apply wallpaper creates an instant cottage appeal.
Paint it happy. A console or dresser painted in a fun or vibrant color is a sweet way to welcome your family and friends in your home.
Design it happy. Your collection of thrift and heirloom plates has to be displayed somewhere. Why not in your entryway?
Use a hall tree. If you only have three to five feet of space (and maybe you are renting and cannot alter the wall in any way), the classic hall tree like the Mission Oak Hall Tree with Storage Bench by Powell just might be what your foyer needs.

Focus on the front door. Painting the inside of your door just might be the easiest and most eye-catching fix that you can do.
Illuminate with swag. Create a small square of foyer space by flanking the front door with sconces, hanging a lamp from a hook over the spot, and spreading a rug upon the floor.
Divide the room. In a longer or larger room, a hanging divider or screen is a great solution for a lock of defined landing area once you have entered the home.
Lean a mirror. Even a chunky wardrobe mirror like the Contemporary Merlot Cheval Mirror by Powell works well in defining a visual vestibule.

Nook necessities. Maybe you have a small spot that is more like a crevice than anything else. Organize your homecomings with baskets, hooks and shelving.
Use an armoire. Aside from being a great and hidden storage, this can also work as an accent furniture. A mirrored one should be great for last-minute primping.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Contemporary Modern Lighting: Pendants in the Kitchen

Have you been considering redecorating your kitchen, but you do not want to spend a lot of money on the construction costs? Why not redo your kitchen lights as of now, particularly the ones over the island? This is a great way to express your design style. Just as re-painting a room brighten up a space, so can lighting. It transforms the kitchen room from uninviting and dull to cheerful and bright. You can find contemporary modern lighting in all sizes, shapes and designs, and they can easily be incorporated into your existing décor.

Remember that the kitchen is where guests mix and mingle. While you might want your kitchen to have an aesthetic appeal, make sure that you also consider practicality and functionality to best serve your kitchen needs. If you considering this option, pay attention to the size of the lights. For kitchen islands, the norm is three pendant lights. This creates a beautiful balance. Here are more tips to help you out.

  • For a small kitchen with a small island, go with two pendant lights instead of three for the best look. This creates a more cohesive and complementary look. You do not have to necessarily follow the rules; you can make exceptions for special cases.
  • Ensure that the mounted lights are high enough to not hinder your movements. Here’s a tip: hang them at least 40 inches above the kitchen island.
  • If you have modern kitchen with stainless steel appliances, metallic pendants like the Geometry Mini Pendant by Kenroy Home will look wonderful in it.

  • One of today’s more popular decorating trends when it comes to pendant lights is the industrial look. This style can be found in various metals like brass, copper and stainless. The Harbour Mini Pendant by Kenroy Home is one fine example.

  • A tip to make your pendant lights both interesting and beautiful is to hand one large pendant over the island to create a focal point in your kitchen. Choose something attention-grabbing like the Medusa Oversize Multi Light Pendant by Nuevo Living and you have created an area that is simple, chic and modern.

  • Pendant lights give a lot of illumination, so you might want to consider installing dimmers that will give you just the right amount of glow, whether for intimate dinners or social gatherings.
  • For task lighting, pick a pendant that is open at the top so the light underneath is not too harsh. For general lighting, evenly space pendants over the work area.
  • To avoid circles of too-bright light, consider getting a pendant with a semi-opaque bulb or one with a light diffuser. A pendant with a dimmer switch should be a great mood setter.

Dimmable, energy-efficient and long-lasting light bulbs are available in a wide range of attractive styles. Choose the bulb that best suits your lighting purposes for the pendant. Intensity and color influence the effectiveness of the light and the mood of the kitchen, whether its purpose is accent, task or overall lighting.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Perfect Guide to Selecting Your Kitchen Island

One of the most versatile elements in modern kitchen dining is the island because it provides a food prep area, serving space and eating area. It can define the kitchen work area and direct traffic away from the work triangle, making your kitchen a better place to work and socialize. Kitchen islands are home owners dreams, especially one who knows his way around the kitchen. The good news is that there are great varieties of island available today, making it easy for you to find the one that fits best.

The number one rule for kitchen islands is that you have to make sure that it does not take away too much space in your kitchen, giving you enough clearance on each side. Once you have determined if an island complements your kitchen, you can then move on to choosing the style and design that will suit your kitchen and your needs.
If you have limited kitchen space and yet you are looking for extra counter space to prepare your meals, look for an island that is not too large and does not have storage underneath. This way, you can still make your room open and spacious. The Parker 47 Modern Glass Console Table by Nuevo Living is one great example. Having a smaller island on wheels like the Butcher Block Top Work Island by Linon Home Decor is also a great idea so you can easily move it around and out of the way.

Since an island can also be a great storage solution, look for one that incorporates drawers and cabinets so it can be more than just a counter space. The Medium Oak 3 Drawer Kitchen Butler by Powell, for instance, comes with so many storage solutions where you can store frequently-used items so they’re all just within reach when you need them.

You can also opt to have a customized island built in your home to ensure that it looks and sits perfectly in exactly the way that you envisioned it. This option is bound to cost more, but you are also bound to get the flexibility of the design, storage options and counter space that you are looking for. And once you have picked out the kitchen island that suits your needs perfectly, you can celebrate and make some homemade pasta on your new island.