Do you need a website to kick off the new year? Now is the time to begin the process. Barbara’s Picks Member Your Computer Lady even has a special package that includes everything you need for your first year! Get the details!
Michell Brown, founder of Dynamic Mobility Training, has a series of 1 minute videos to help you move during the day to increase and sustain your energy. She’s a member of Barbara’s Picks!
Watch this amazing master closet makeover by Barbara’s Pick member Classy Closets! I’m ready to move in!
As I was putting my Halloween decorations out this year, I thought what a pleasure it gives me to have these symbols of the holidays. The pieces I’ve chosen have become sweet memories. For instance, I have a large white porcelain pumpkin that matches my black-and-white home. I adorn it with orange pumpkins but my personal black-and-white statement is there.
I also have an orange glass lamp with a black shade that I only bring out during October. I use it to temporarily replace a lamp in my kitchen and then I move it on Halloween night to the table outside my front door to light the way to my surprises for the trick-or-treaters. I pack it away each November 1st until the next year.
For Thanksgiving, I have other accessories. I love using my white, brown and black turkey serving pieces which I set on an autumn-colored tablecloth. I then add a mix of napkins in those colors. It’s also lovely to randomly add autumn leaves on the table. You can use votive or colored candles to make it complete. It’s not expensive to rent a tablecloth and napkins so you have different colors every year. Finally, I place my festive wooden turkey plaque at the front door to welcome my guests.
When I open my cupboard, I am always excited to see the potpourri of colors I store for the holidays. It’s like old friends coming to visit. There are times I introduce new friends into my collection as my family of decorations and ornaments grow.
The holidays are all about color! Much of my collection has no particular holiday symbolism. I simply use the right color for the holiday. If there is a particular symbolism to the holiday, I blend color with those pieces that carries the theme further. When using color only, you can start the holiday early and end late.
The other day I was at an accessory store with a friend. She saw hand towels with a Christmas design on them for her powder room. She asked what I thought of them. I was concerned that people would not want to use them and that, if someone did, the towels would be ruined. I suggested that perhaps colored towels would be just as effective. I recommended red or green, accented with gold or white. They would be washable and replaceable. Next I suggested that Christmas ornaments be placed around the area for theme and fun. As we talked, she remembered several Christmas decorations she could use in the powder room.
It’s possible to celebrate each holiday with your personal decorations that make a statement about you. Think about the pieces you might have tucked away and how you could use them to decorate for the holidays.
My holiday decorations have become a holiday ritual. “Holiday rituals – activities that invite us to step out of ordinary time – play a strong and important role in emotional health,” says Andrew Weil. He goes on to say, “They deepen relationships, allow the expression of important values, and offer a sense of security and continuity.”
Your rooms will look beautiful and give you a feeling of celebration. So consider what you can do to put you and your visitors in the mood of the holiday. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU DO!
Many homes today, especial those with open plans, don’t have formal entries. You open the door and step into a room. This makes the outside area of your front door even more important. It is the place people wait for you to open the door and be invited in. Your guests’ attitude begins here. It sets the tone as to how they will feel in your home.
At my front door, I have created an actual entry. I’ve put a bench on one side, and an entry table and mirror on the other side. Potted plants and a fountain finish the look. When I entertain, I often put candles, flowers or a theme accessory on the table to express a more welcoming feeling.
How do you feel when you approach someone’s front door? Do you look for the bell? Is it easy to find? More importantly, is it clean? We don’t think about cleaning our door bells. However, the doorbell may be the first thing people touch as they enter our domain.
Here are some questions you might like to consider about your home’s outside entry:
- What does your front door look like?
- Does it represent the architecture of your home or the style of your interior?
- What condition is it in?
- Is the door handle one you would like to touch?
- Does the handle go with the door design?
- Is there a door mat?
- What condition is it in?
- What story does it tell?
Here’s a helpful hint about door mats. Buy an over-sized mat and turn it at a 90-degree angle. This way, people have a few more steps to wipe their shoes. Make sure it’s the kind of mat that really captures the dirt from your shoes. The dust and dirt that enters our home from our shoes is what soils and destroys carpets. If dirt is caught outside, we have less to clean later.
At night, lighting is important. You can light the entry from a chandelier above (which is harder to clean) or you can place sconces on the walls. Use just enough light to illuminate the path to the front door. Drama can also come from well lighted plants.
If you haven’t already, I encourage you to experience what it’s really like to come into your home by the front door. See how your guests feel. You might like it so much you will decide to pull your car into the garage and come in through your front door all the time.
And remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU DO!
On Tuesday, October 17th, AZADI Fine Rugs celebrated the 1st Annual American Dream contestants with a reception at their Scottsdale Gallery. The art contest aims to encourage children to spread their wings in the world of imagination and build on the essential elements that art and creativity bring to their lives. Open to students age 5-18 at Scottsdale Christian Academy and working in partnership with SCA art teacher Crystal Cruse, the students were asked to submit a drawing based on their interpretation of the American Dream. A handmade rug was woven based on the winning design. AZADI Fine Rugs has held the American Dream Contest in Telluride for five years, and in Sedona and Jackson Hole for 3 years. This year they expanded it to Scottsdale. MORE!
Jerry’s Audio/Video offers you the latest in technology! The Edge Media Frame is built to order to accommodate any TV and Horizon Series soundbar. Available in a variety of finishes, the solid hardwood frame magnetically attaches to the ventilated backplate, allowing for easy installation and maintenance. MORE!
Kravet presents Artisan Velvets, a collection of luxury jacquard velvets in an assortment of modern styles. These sumptuous textures are created in the most special velvet qualities only woven at select mills around the world. Artisan Velvets brings an artful touch while remaining exceptionally refined in aesthetic. MORE on Kravet Fabrics.
No matter the size of our bedrooms, we’re often more concerned with the size of our closets. They’re never big enough. One reason is that our closets today are not just for hanging clothes. In many cases, they have replaced bedroom furniture and now have built-in drawers and cabinets. We have hooks to hang belts, ties, robes and hats; and pull-out hooks for when we bring dry cleaning home or need to organize for travel. We even have seating to put on our shoes and mirrors for checking to see how we look.
No matter the size of your closet, it has to function for you. It has to be organized so you can easily make your selections, particularly when you might still be too tired to think in the morning or be creative in clothing choices.
“Make sure each closet works for you,” says Penny Gimbel, a professional organizer and space designer with Classy Closets. “Remember, the only place to store hanging clothes is in the closet: Do not be lured into putting in shelving, drawers etc., until you have first made appropriate places for the hanging items.”
Before designing your closet, take inventory of what you have and need. This is a good time to clean out your closet. Now measure, according to general lengths, the linear feet of clothing you have to hang—long hanging, short hanging and three-quarter hanging. Make sure your clothes aren’t too close together so they will keep their shape and not create wrinkles.
Consider the following:
- Do you fold slacks or hang lengthwise? (There is no right or wrong here; personal preference should prevail.)
- It’s better to hang T-shirts. (This means less work, and they’re easier to see—which is particularly important for children’s clothing.)
- Shelves are easier and less expensive than drawers. (If you are concerned with dust or appearance, consider installing doors to create a type of armoire.)
- Place only smaller items, such as underwear, socks, stockings, bathing suits, and nightgowns, in drawers. Sweaters, sweats or shorts should be on 16” shelves, making them easier to see.
- If your closet is too small, you may have to separate summer and winter, or work and casual, or every day and dressy.
- Do not make the mistake of thinking deeper drawers are better. They only become collection bins instead of organizers.
You must also consider the height of the person who will use the closet. Measurements need to be customized for the individual’s size.
- Normal double rods for hanging are 84 inches and 42 inches. But if a person is 5 feet 11 inches or taller, you’ll need to go to 90 inches and 45 inches.
- Three-quarter lengths include long slacks, skirts, short- to medium- length dresses and three-quarter-length jackets.
Penny says the two most important things in a closet are being able to see and being able to access your belongings. Good design and generally standard materials will give you the best function. Upgraded colors and real woods add to the cost, so be sure you really need the special colors, handles, and gadgets.
Last, but not least, lighting must bring out the natural color of your clothing. Full-spectrum fluorescents are best because they give no heat and the best overall lighting.
How you feel in your closet may reflect how you look all day.
Remember, rooms (closets) have no feelings, you do!
In this video, Eva discusses the real estate recovery and current status.
More on Homes by Eva Marin.