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Threats to your Sofa

What is the greatest enemy to your furniture covers? Whether you have fixed covers or loose covers, it could be muddy children, grandchildren or husbands. However if you have a sofa with washable loose covers the risk of damage is greatly reduced, the real evil enemy is in fact pets, more specifically our feline friends.

Why is it that cats just love to rake their claws down the side of the sofa, or snuggle up in the chair while purring away and happily dragging their claws across the cushions. My own sofa looks like it is growing hair as it has been the victim of many clawing sessions. Frustrating as it is, the cat won't listen and refuses to stop.

Happily there is an answer, without resorting to banishing the cat. Various cat deterents are available such as sprays, sticky paws or simply choose to cover your furniture with hardwearing chenille fabrics rather than the old-fashioned stretch fabrics. These are washable too so any muddy paws are easily dealt with.

Dog and cat hair is another problem and a guaranteed way to cause irritation. Much has been written about asthma and likely causes but this entry is more concerned with how your furniture actually looks and solutions for keeping it clean. Again a good solution to the molting pet problems is washable loose covers.

Or of course, you could always buy a goldfish!

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Get your tickets now for the Ideal Home Show

This year is going to be something special as the Ideal Home Show celebrates its 100 years of Innovation and Inspirational ideas for the home and garden. Here are just some of the things you'll see:

Kitchen Ideas - For the heart of the home, there will be a stunning range of inspirational ideas to feast your eyes upon. From traditional timbered kitchen furniture to cutting edge stainless steel cutlery, an enviable smorgasbord of kitchen and culinary delights. There is even a "Chef’s Kitchen Theatre" featuring cooking demonstrations from celebrity cooks.

Interior Ideas - Let your imagination run riot with the dazzling displays of interior designs and home furnishings. You will everything from the fun, the functional, the innovative and the opulent. Don’t forget to visit the home even the Joneses can’t keep up with – the ultimate Dream Home and Guest House.

Bathroom Ideas - Indulge yourself with the wonderful eclectic collection of bathroom and sanitary ware products. Then see how the other half bathes with celebrity bathrooms attraction developed in association with Madam Tussuad’s.

Garden Ideas - For the great outdoor living, a great selection of innovative and inspirational solutions. From furniture to patios, gadgets to gazebos, everything you need in the garden to make it look rosy.

Home Improvement - Love your home and add value, too, with thousands of inspiring ideas to DIY for. From loft conversions to ideas for reducing your carbon footprint, don’t jut look to improve, look to impress. Don’t miss out on the two show houses either, which take a sneaky glimpse into low-carbon high design future.

You can sign up to the newsletter here to keep up to date with the latest exciting developments from the show. Or book your tickets here...

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Benefits of Reupholstery over Loose Covers

One of the main benefits of reupholstery over loose covers is the ability to retain special features.

Show wood is a good example. A couple of recent examples from the Plumbs reupholstery workrooms are shown here.

In both cases the customers had chosen reupholstery to retain the wood features of the furniture:

before.jpg


The example below shows half way through and then the finished article.

This shows work in progress as the reupholstery fabric is attached beneath the position of the arm:

arm.jpg


The finished article looks superb. Every details of the furniture is exactly as in the original state when the furniture was brand new.

In summary for chairs with special features such as show wood, furniture reupholstery is the best option.

finished-arm.jpg

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Your Home Improvement Resolution

Millions of people every year will make a new year resolution and millions of people will not keep to them, I know, I am one of them.  This is mainly because they are not realistic, too many are made or they're not thought through enough.  However if home improvement has been one of them we have some good tips to help keep you on the road to resolution.

To manage any sort of project there are three main requirements:

    • Decide what needs to be done
    • Prioritise what need to be done
    • Set yourself goals to achieve what needs to be done


In deciding what needs to be done you should try and take a subjective look at your home, a good way to do this is to take a walk around in the mindset of a prospective buyer, you will probably be shocked to see what is in need of improvement.  Get a piece of paper and a pencil and walk through your home room by room.

Starting from the entrance to your home, be it a porch or hallway.  Is it bright and welcoming, or dark and uninviting?  Using softer and lighter shades of colour on the walls can make a dramatic improvement to how people first perceive your home.  This can also be achieved of letting in more natural light, which is not always possible but can be remedied by adding more or brighter lighting fixtures.

The next logical step would be your Living Room, this is where you most need to feel relaxed and restful.  So it is important that all the walls, furnishings, curtains and flooring be coordinated and harmonise with each other.  Neutral tones on the walls are often used as a safe colour to achieve this effect and are easier to contrast with your other features.  If you find your suite is looking tired and worn, fitting made to measure furniture covers are a cheaper alternative to buying a new sofa.

Dinging Rooms are going to a big design essential for 2008 and visual indigestion will definitely not improve your family's appetite. Ever wondered why red is such a popular colour for restaurants and dining rooms? It's because it stimulates the appetite. It's also an energising colour and therefore a good backdrop for social situations. However, choose the shade carefully - you want to create warmth rather than an oppressive, angry atmosphere.

Now to your Kitchen, the most important factor of this room is hygiene.  If there are any dirty marks damage to work surfaces or cupboards then the impression may not be very tasteful.  The main idea of improvement to this room is make it as functional and pleasant to be in.

You may not think it but it can be quite simple and relatively cheap to spruce up you Bathroom.  Just by replacing your taps, toilet seats, shower curtain/door etc. with new or modern fittings can make a real difference.  Look at the flooring, we are becoming more European in our tastes and they regard carpet as unhygienic. Changing to cork, bamboo or ceramic tiles will give your bathroom a fresh, clean and modern look. Coloured suites are also out of fashion. Look out for offers at the DIY stores or on the Internet and consider replacement with plain white.

And finally your Boudoir.  In the bedroom the obvious focal point should be your bed and dressed to command attention, this can be done in a number of fashions such as using bedspreads and scatter cushions.  Colours again are important in creating the right atmosphere and reflect the personality of whoever this room is intended.  You should take you time here to decide how you can create that ultimate feeling for yourself.

Good luck!

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