Selasa, 04 Agustus 2009

[] Style on a budget: Simple changes = dramatic results

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Would you like to add more elegance and style to your home? Would you like to
know how to do it for less money? Youre not alone. Americans spent $343 billion
on home enhancement, according to a recent study by the Barnard Retail
Consulting Group of Upper Montclair, N.J. So if you are thinking of improving
your home decor, you are in good company.Trends driving todays decoratingPeople
are changing their decor more often than in the past. This is due to the greater
pace of life in general, as well as shorter design cycles in other style areas
such as clothing fashions.Consumers are more style and fashion conscious and
want to express their individual taste. The Internet, movies, magazines, and TV
programs all display a much wider range of home decor styleselements of which
consumers want to incorporate into their lives.People are investing less in
decor items. Young people especially, often leave the old decor items behind,
rather than pay to move them to their new homes. Can I decorate without a
decorator?Today, more people than ever are making exciting changes to their
homes, and they are doing so without the expense of a professional decorator. If
you are thinking of improving your decor you may be wondering:Can I make the
changes myself?Will the results look professional?Can I learn about my
options?Can I make the changes for a reasonable amount of money?In a wordyes!
Not only can you successfully decorate your home yourself, there are compelling
reasons for doing it yourself. These include:Saving moneyGetting exactly what
you wantImplementing the decor changes on a time frame that matches you budget
and available timeExpressing your unique sense of style go high end on one room,
more modest on anotherWhere to find decor ideas:Home decor trends change often.
To find the latest trends:Read home design magazinesGo window-shopping at
furniture and design storesTalk to in-store designersWill my new decor work with
what I have?One of the exciting design trends of recent years in the eclectic
lookthe mixing and matching of various items, fabrics, colors and styles. Many
people today typically have an assortment of home furnishings: antique items
they inherited, items bought while single, and items chosen as a couple. Today
you can combine these in creative and fun ways for a look that is pleasing and
uniquely yours. This is quite a contrast to the more stuffy approach of period
furniture and decor of the past.Where do I start?With the home decor choices
available, starting a project can seem a bit intimidating. Like all successful
projects, you need a plan before you start. Consider your objectivesdo you want
to add a new piece of furniture or redo a whole room? Rather than get bogged
down with reviewing endless possible decor improvements, lets focus on the
following four areas that yield impressive results for a reasonable
price:PaintArea rugsFurnitureLampsPaintPainting a room is one of the easiest but
most impressive decor changes you can make. You can make a small room look
larger with lighter colors. You can also make a smaller apartment look larger by
tying its rooms together with a lighter color.Conversely, you can make a large
room more intimate by using darker colors. A splash of color can brighten a drab
space. Have a favourite rug or piece of furniture? Then you can use this as the
basis of your decor and select a paint color that complements it.Purchase your
paint from a quality speciality paint retailer. National paint retailers have
the latest colors and can instruct you on new painting techniques. Since they
only sell paint, they have very knowledgeable staff that can assist you in
finding the perfect color for your project.How to paint like a proSelect one or
two dominant colors for your room. While the choice of paint colors is up to
you, you can get the best results by ensuring that you:Buy quality paint. Rule
number 1:You cannot afford cheap paint! Why? The biggest cost of painting is
laboryours or someone elses. Quality paint covers better, goes farther, looks
better when finished, and wears longer. Saving a few dollars a gallon is false
economy. Unless you are painting a kitchen or bathroom that will experience
frequent scrubbings, use a quality latex paint. Latex paint produces fewer fumes
when drying and allows you to clean your implements with soap and water rather
than with mineral spirits, such as turpentine. Buy quality brushes and rollers.
You want to apply your quality paint with quality tools. Ensure you have the
correct brush for the job. For latex paint, you want to use a quality brush that
has synthetic bristles. For oil paint, purchase a brush with natural bristles.
Purchase high quality rollers with the appropriate nap. Nap refers to the length
of the fabric on the roller. In general, a shorter nap will produce a smoother
finish. Dont try to clean rollers. If you finish a wall and need to stop for the
day, use a fresh roller when you start again. By purchasing quality paint and
applying it carefully with quality tools, you will be ensuring the best possible
result for your efforts.Dont skimp on preparation. Actually painting the room is
the final step. The time you spend getting your room ready to paint will reward
you with a much better finished look.Dont paint over dirt. Begin by washing the
walls and ceiling with Tri Sodium Phosphate or TSP. This comes in powdered form
and you mix it with a bucket of hot water. Wear rubber gloves and use a clean
sponge. Sponge the room with clear water when you are finished. Dont skip this
step, because you will be amazed at how much grime comes off from clean-looking
walls.Once the walls are clean, fill nail holes and any imperfections with
drywall patching compound. Fill the nicks and scratches; let dry, then sand
smooth. Always prime the areas you have patched before painting, otherwise the
areas will show through as dull spots.Remove or cover all furniture with drop
cloths. Cover your floors and any baseboard trim before starting.Take your time.
One of the great things about doing it yourself is that you can work carefully
and do a superior job. Relax, work carefully, and you will be amazed at what you
have accomplished.Area RugsA new area rug represents one of the best home decor
purchases you can make. These affordable rugs come in a multitude of styles,
fabrics, and colors. You can use them to brighten a room, accent your furniture,
or provide a lively contrast to the primary decorating theme. Area rugs work
well in living rooms of course, but also in bedrooms, halls, even bathrooms.
There are three broad categories of area rugs.Persian RugsPersian rugs have a
well-deserved reputation as the finest in world. All Persian rugs are made by
hand, visit for more details.
Each rug is a beautiful and complex original, painstakingly made by skilled
humans. Many weavers come from families that have been making rugs for
generations. The symmetry and accuracy of the complex designs is stunning. A
Persian rug represents an investment in gracious living that, with proper care,
will yield decades of beauty and elegance to your home.Four main factors
contribute Persians legacy of excellence: Beautiful colorsrich vibrant colors
reflect the use of the finest dyesEnchanting designswhile each rug is unique
there are three broad categories of design, each stunning in its own way:
geometric designs, curvilinear and floral designs, and pictorial designsHigh
knot countsimply put, more knots are better because they result in a tighter
weave Highest quality materialsthese rugs feature the highest quality wool,
silk, and dyes. The highest quality materials yield the finest rugs.Oriental
RugsOriental rugs come from Asia and are less expensive than Persian rugs.
Oriental rugs come in a vast array of sizes, colors, and designs. All Oriental
rugs have the following key characteristics:Stunning Colorsrich, lush colors
that blend together beautifully predominate Beautiful Designscomplex patterns
and even pictures characterize these rugs. The religion of Islam inspires many
of the designs and themes, giving the rugs an elegant and exotic
lookContemporary RugsGenerally the most affordable of area rugs, contemporary
rugs tend to defy description; there are so many great possibilities. Broadly
speaking, however, contemporary area rugs have the following
characteristics:Bright colorsBold designs and patternsHigh tech fabrics such as
acrylic, polypropylene, rayon, and wool (low tech but high quality)Unique
shapesunconventional shapes aboundWho has the best selection of area rugs at the
lowest prices?Internet merchants. A quality Internet-based retailer can carry
far more stock than the local carpet store. They have lower prices because their
overhead is lower and they tend to deal directly with the carpet makersthereby
cutting out layers of middlemen and the expensive mark-ups.If buying a carpet
over the Internet seems unusual, dont worry. (People didnt used to buy computers
over the Internet either.) The key to buying a great carpet you will love is
finding a reputable online merchant. You want someone who has a solid
reputation, great selection, excellent product knowledge, and guarantees.
FurnitureFurniture makes a big decor statement in a room. Casual or elegant,
bold or subtle, theres nothing like the right pieces to set a room off. Heres a
little secret they wont tell you at the furniture storechances are good you dont
need to replace the furniture you already have to get a fresh new look in your
home. Furniture, especially older furniture, is often extremely well made. The
frame is often hardwood and very sound. Likely the cushions are fine too. What
might be a bit out of date is the fabric and pattern. Do you need to spend a
bundle on having the item reupholstered? No you dont!Savvy consumers know that
todays innovative slipcovers can rejuvenate your couch or chair at a fraction of
the cost of replacing them or having them reupholstered. Modern slipcovers fit
beautifully, giving you a tailored look. Here are the benefits of using
slipcovers:Save money. Why spend $1,000 or more for a new couch when you can get
the same look for a fraction of the cost?Achieve a high quality look
inexpensively with hundreds styles, patterns, and colors of fabrics to choose
from. Many high-class fabrics are available such as suede. Change the look
whenever you want. Buy two slipcovers for a sofaa casual one for everyday use
and a second one for entertaining. In minutes you can transform from casual to
elegant.Enjoy your furniture more, because you worry less. Unlike in magazines,
real children spill things and pets mess up the sofa. This is not a problem if a
slipcover protects your sofa. Pop it in the wash and prestothe sofa looks
immaculate again! Respect the environmentdont trash good furniture when it can
still provide years of stylish service with slipcovers.Best of all, you can
view, order, and have these slipcovers delivered without leaving the house.
Internet retailers have the widest selection and the lowest prices. Here is
great example of lamps and light fixtures site
LampsIn the right light, at the right time, everything is extraordinary.

Aaron RoseInterior
designers use lighting to bring a room alive, and so can you. Consider the
beauty of a pool of light in a room, adding mood and elegance.One of the best
ways make a lighting decor statement is through a combination of floor and table
lamps. Lamps represent your best lighting value because they require no wiring
alterations to your home and because they can be moved from room to room and
from house to house. By only lighting the areas you want, you can save energy
and money. And you can add or take away focus from different parts of a room,
according to your decorating scheme.Using lamps effectivelyBegin by asking
yourself what you are trying to achieve. Do you want general illumination in a
corner of the room or a lamp to light a task area, such as a desk or comfy
reading chair? This will help you narrow the choice to freestanding floor lamps
or table lamps.Next think of styles. Today you can choose from literally
hundreds of different styles of lamps in classical, contemporary, and futuristic
styles. Both floor lamps and table lamps (visit and for more details) also come in
a vast array of colors and materials including brass and other metals, plastic
and wood. Whatever your style, there is a lamp for you.Finally, consider the
light it casts. Today you can get lamps with bulbs that cast distinct lights.
The oldest and most familiar bulb is the incandescent that casts a warm light.
These bulbs are inexpensive, but not very energy efficient. Consider a lamp with
a dimmer that accepts tri-light bulbs, so you can tailor the light to the mood
and save energy.Two other choices not available in the past are compact
fluorescent bulbs and halogen bulbs. Compact fluorescent bulbs fit in standard
light sockets and are super energy efficient. These bulbs come in a variety of
lighting tones so you can have both energy efficiency and a warm, inviting
light. The other choice today is halogen bulbs. These tiny bulbs cast a bright,
whitish lightideal for spot illumination.Final decor thoughtsWhatever the scope
of your project, be bold, take chances, and express yourself. If youve always
wanted a red walldo it. The suggestions above are modest in cost, allowing you
to experiment and find just the right home decor look. Have fun! About the
author: Colin McDougall is a successful freelance writer for several home
decor websites. For more tips and ideas visit
http://www.only-area-rugs.com Mosquitoes in your yard? Try planting
these. Scottie JohnsonMosquitoes in Your Garden? Try Planting These!If you are a
serious gardener, you spend lots of time outdoors. And, for sure, you would
rather be tending your plants than swatting mosquitoes. While there are many
things you can do to keep mosquitoes away, there are some plants that will
beautify your yard and help repel mosquitoes. As one more way to keep mosquitoes
away from you and your yard, try planting these attractive plants.
HORSEMINTHorsemint has a scent similar to citronella. Horsemint grows wild in
most of the Eastern United States, from Mexico, Texas up to Minnesota to
Vermont. It is partial to sandy soils and will grow in USDA Zones 5-10. Native
Americans used it as a treatment for colds and flu. It has natural fungicidal
and bacterial retardant properties because it's essential oils are high in
thymol.ROSEMARYThis wonderful herb we use for seasoning is also a great, natural
mosquito repellant. It has been used for centuries to keep pesky mosquitoes
away. Rosemary is a native of the Mediterranean, so it likes hot, dry weather
and well-drained soil. It is hardy in USDA zones 8-10, and must be grown as a
pot plant in colder climates. If you happen to live in a part of the country
where rosemary does not grow, you can get a good quality rosemary essential oil;
mix 4 drops with cup olive oil. Store in a cool, dry place. When it comes to
fresh plant oils as natural mosquito repellants, there is every reason to have
the plant in your yard, if they will grow in your area. It is an inexpensive and
attractive way to boost the appearance of the landscape and have natural
mosquito repellants on hand as well. MARIGOLDSOrganic gardeners have used
marigolds as companion plants to keep aphids away. Mosquitoes dont like its
scent any better (and some humans feel the same way). Marigolds are sun-loving
annuals that come in a variety of shapes and sizes for almost any landscape.
They are quite easy to grow from seed. AGERATUMThis charming little bedding
plant contains coumarin, and mosquitoes detest the smell. It is used in the
perfume industry and is even in some commercial mosquito repellants. Dont rub
ageratum on your skin, though. It has some other less desirable elements that
you dont want to keep on your skin in quantity. Ageratums are annuals, and the
come in a muted blue and white that compliments most other plantings. MOSQUITO
PLANTSThere are two types of plants that are called mosquito plants. One is a
member of the geranium family that was genetically engineered to incorporate the
properties of citronella. Citronella only grows in tropical places, but it is a
well known repellant for mosquitoes. This plant was created to bring the
repellant properties of citronella into a hardier plant. It will grow where any
geranium will thrive. Many have questioned its usefulness as a mosquito
repellant, but it is attractive enough to warrant planting for its ornamental
value. The other kind of mosquito plant is agastache cana. Its common names
include Texas hummingbird mint, bubblegum mint, giant hyssop, or giant
hummingbird mint. As you might guess, hummingbirds are quite attracted to it. It
is a New Mexico native, also found in parts of Texas. It is, in fact, a member
of the mint family and its leaves do have a pungent aroma when crushed. In its
native habitat, it is perennial, and is usually hardy in USDA Zones 5a-9a. It
blooms late summer to early fall, so it catches hummingbirds on their annual
migration. The long, medium pink flowers reel in butterflies as well. CATNIPOne
of the most powerful mosquito repellant plants is ordinary catnip. Recent
studies have shown that it is ten times more effective than DEET at repelling
mosquitoes. It is a short lived perennial throughout most of the United States.
It is easy to grow from seed, and quickly reseeds. Aside from its intoxicating
effects on cats, the leaves make a very soothing tea. With all of these plants,
the leaves must be crushed to release the aroma. Otherwise mosquitoes cant smell
them. And, with rosemary and catnip, you can simply crush a few leaves and rub
on your skin and clothing to enhance the effect. So, next time you are revising
your plantings, consider using some of these attractive plants to do more than
just enhance the landscape. You can have pretty ornamentals that also drive
mosquitoes away. About the author: Scottie Johnson is a life long mosquito
warrior and freelance writer dedicated to eliminating mosquitoes from her life.
She is also an organic gardener. For more information about mosquito control in
your home and yard, visit her website at
http://www.mosquito-kill-net.comCopyright 2004 All rights reserved. Copies of
this article may be used on websites and in e-zines provided the resource
biography and URL are not removed prior to reproduction. - The intention
to integrate an immersive 3D environment into the Virtual Real World experience
was in large part to provide the social intuitive tools for managing the total
3D experience. Frames of reference are necessary for navigating among the
conversational sub-groups. The use of distance, perspective, and orientation in
a social context are only meaningful in a 3D spatial environment. In addition to
providing familiar paradigms for managing social interaction however, the shared
virtual space also allows the user other quasi-organic channels of
communication. Using basic navigation skills, the user can implement common
gestures such as non-verbal communication (e.g. nodding, looking up/down,
cocking the head, turning away in disgust, and other pre-programmed actions,
etc.) Dancing, laughing, and exuberant motion can be used in conjunction with
voice and other actions to enrich emotional expression. Landmarks and rooms
(TARDIS, Egyptian art, pyramid, art galleries, bedroom, conference room or even
the facility to teleport to a different Virtual Real World) can also be used to
rendezvous with other individuals or groups for planned tours and events. The 3D
environments also provide a symbolic and thematic background for communication.
While text chat rooms are generally categorized by naming conventions, the
experience of using each virtual real world space is identical and the theme is
maintained only by the combined consent of the group to speak on a certain
topic. Adding the dimension of in-world thematic elements (e.g. Egyptian art
world, art galleries, tables and chairs and other executive artifacts in a
business conference space, a molecular model for a scientific discussion, 3D
fish and skull models, TARDIS, etc.) While the content of the speech is still
determined by the individual participants, the virtual real world has a
persistent thematic suggestion. In addition to theme, mood, and setting can be
suggested in a 3D environment space, through the use of architectural design,
images, and sculptural elements as well as background textures and lighting.
Environmental audio (EAX- surround sound) in the form of randomly cycling layers
of sounds or music are added to the 3D environment space to provide greater
depth of experience. Walking and running on different surfaces produce different
sounds. Most physical entropies can be simulated; e.g., gravity, velocity, mass,
friction, etc. Facilities for interaction between the avatars and the space are
not limited. However, objects can be authored to produce spatialized audio in
response to proximity to an avatar and simulate the sound in the specific
environment. Thus, for example an object representing an information provider
(radio, drawing, text sheet, etc.,) could give audio and visual information to
an avatar as well as machinery, birds, wind, etc. to simulate the actual real
world. Access to the local computer as well as the facility to teleport to other
Virtual Real Worlds also exists. Objects can act as links to other 3D spaces or
as triggers to launch a web page, document, tool, or visual display. Avatar
implementation. In an attempt to further enhance the organic feel of the 3D
environment experience, the decision was made to implement avatars as smoothly
morphing 3D models that animate in response to the user's demands. Usually, as
in the case of anthropomorphic avatars, this animation takes the form of
synchronizing the movement of the limbs with pre-programmed commands. This
creates the profound illusion of an avatar in the process of producing speech
while looking in a certain direction. This animation helps the user to determine
which avatar in the field of view is speaking and adds to the overall illusion
of being in the direct presence of living, conscious creatures. This same
morphing technique is used to implement pointing, breathing, changes in
emotional state and other lifelike sequences to further enhance the subtle
impression of life in the avatars. Because avatars showcase the body language so
prominently, this organic effect is highly resonant with users, due to the
extreme psychological and neuropsychological importance of the body language and
speech to the human psyche. Users have reported a desire to maintain contact and
to feel the effects of personal space during a session, indicating a high level
of immersion in the social environment. The 3D environment experience. Users are
immersed in a shared 3D virtual real world, with first-person perspective. Each
user is able to navigate his or her avatar with six degrees of freedom (up,
down, left, right, forward, and back) and each sees the other participants as
fully modeled 3D characters or avatars. As a user moves or speaks, his or her
body language emanates from the corresponding avatar to each of the other
avatars. The avatar's body language and structure synchronize with and the sound
of the voice is distance-attenuated and spatialized in EAX surround sound
stereo, according to its position in the 3D virtual real world relative to the
local user. The voice communication server driven with full EAX surround sound
and fully multi-point, i.e., the user is receiving audio while speaking and
multiple streams of voice audio are delivered to each avatar. The overall effect
of the voice delivery in conjunction with the visual and audio environment is
that of a virtual "cocktail party". Users spontaneously form and re-form
conversational subgroups, using natural social conventions as well as
pre-programmed activities. Initial contacts are made using real-world methods,
such as saying "Hello, there!" towards another avatar and waiting for the other
participant to turn and orient (in response to the spatialized audio cue) before
proceeding. These experiences are now available from Mellanium Design and
Tele3DWorld. You can experience the above defined Virtual Real World now. The
Virtual Real Worlds will be available 24/7 for holding meetings or just general
conversation. Join us now and be one of the first to experience this new
technology. Note: the philosophy of commincating information using 3D to 3D
requires the user to accept this concept; the 2D paradigm has to resisted and
new methods devised to create 3D environments that enable this philosophy to be
realized. See for more information. For a demonstration
contact skype id joe133952 Copyright(c) ken rigby for Mellanium Design and
Tele3DWorld About the Author Ken studied Systems Engineering processes using
the knowledge gained from being an engineering apprentice with DeHavilland
Aircraft from 1961. Spent years documenting a standard approach but failed to
communicate using 2D text and images to convey the concept and its realization.
see for more information 3D is the only way forward; by using
3D Virtual Real Worlds and making wise decisions we can work to a coesive

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