How to Make Your Basement Less Scary

Decorate your basement into a cozy living area that you will love to hang out in. Here is exactly how to do that!


Photo By: Metro Building and Remodeling Group LLC

When I was a kid, nothing scared me more than having to go down in the basement of our house. Dark and dusty with few windows, a cold dirt floor, and noisy furnace clanking away in the corner, it seemed like the kind of place a person could wander into and never come out of! Nowadays, of course, I know there’s nothing to be afraid of down there. But that doesn’t make the basement any less intimidating. Often overlooked and relegated to nothing more than storage, most basements are ugly, inhospitable places. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

There are numerous benefits to renovating the basement. For one, it will probably cut down on your kids’ nightmares. But it can also add value to your home. When it comes time to sell, you’ll get a much better answer to the question “How much is my house worth?” if you put work into making your basement less scary and more swanky. Here are three ideas for how to do that.

Make it a real room

By that I mean treat it no differently than you would any other room in the house. Instead of being an afterthought, approach your basement as a place where you might actually want to spend some time.  First things first: that means upping your standards for the floor, ceiling, and walls. Still sporting a dirt or concrete floor? Lay down some tiles, laminate, or carpeting. Is the ceiling a rickety mess of exposed beams, pipes, wires, and jutting nails? Cover it up by installing ceiling panels, or at least make it a bit easier on the eyes by painting the pipes, bundling wires together and wrapping them in insulation, and trimming those nails. Are your walls rough and uneven? Hide them behind wood paneling or hire a contractor to build smooth, flat walls over them.


Photo By: FBC Remodel

Get rid of that chill

It’s not just that basements look uncomfortable that makes them so scary, it’s that they feel it too. Being below ground results in basements that are often cold and damp. Even worse, that’s exactly the kind of atmosphere that attracts bugs, mice, and other household pests. Give those tiny li’l squatters an eviction notice with an electric space heater and/or dehumidifier that will help get rid of the goosebumps that pop up on your skin whenever you come downstairs.

Improve the lighting

It’s not easy brightening up a place that’s underground, but anything’s better than a single dangling lightbulb with a pull-string. You’ll be amazed at how much more inviting your basement becomes, and how much extra space it actually offers, with better illumination. If you only have one or two small windows, see if it’s possible to either add more or enlarge the ones you have. Using mirrors as décor can help by reflecting even a small amount of natural light all around the room. Your best bet for improving your basement’s lighting situation, though, is by adding more electrical options. Even a one or two overhead lights, a few well-placed lamps, or a couple light strings can have a major positive impact.

7 Budget-Friendly Ideas to Refresh Your Home

While the idea of a renovation always sounds good in theory, when you begin thinking of the price tag, it can quickly become discouraging. Here are some budget friendly ways to make it happen!

Photos By: Architectural Digest

If you feel that your home is not nearly as comfortable as it used to be, you may want to consider trying out several less expensive and less permanent options to liven things up before jumping to the idea of completely renovating a room or even your entire house. Doing this has the potential to save you a fair amount of money and time, especially if you end up finding a change that breathes some fresh life into your home without the need for a complete overhaul.

Change the Lighting up

Rather than contacting builders, plumbers, electricians, and architects, you might want to consider getting in touch with just the electricians to help you out with the lighting. Changing out the lighting in your home can do a lot to make the place feel brand new again. From replacing the bulbs in your light fixtures to purchasing different fixtures for your home, you will have a lot of options to choose from and only one professional to rely on rather than five. This will not only be a lot easier to handle at once, but it will also be much more budget-friendly.

Add an Outdoor Room

It won’t be the same as renovating the whole house, but getting a team of house builders to build an outdoor room can bring about the same energy of having something brand new added to the home. Outdoor rooms are wonderful if you have the space for them, as they can allow you to take in the fresh air outside while still retaining the same homely feeling of being at your own house. But, best of all, all the builders will need to do is install a simple pergola to keep the rain out and then it will all be done. From there, you can spend time picking out furniture, décor, rugs, lighting, and anything else you want in your new room to make it feel perfect for your home. It may not be a full renovation, but it can feel like one.

Consider Painting the Walls (or Installing Wallpaper)

This is a task that you won’t need any help from home builders for. A fresh coat of paint or some new wallpaper can easily make the rooms of your home feel new again, especially if you choose a vastly different colour than the previous one. Additionally, these tasks can become fun family projects to be completed over a slow weekend. Combined with changing up the lighting of your home, you can make your home feel as if it is a completely different building without blowing thousands of dollars on renovations.

Add New Door Handles

This minor detail might not seem like much at first, but in a room full of door handles, drawer pulls, and cabinet knobs, changing all of these can be just enough to create that excitement of having a big change in your home. More often than not, the best room to do this to is going to be your kitchen. This job is quick, inexpensive, and easy to complete. Pairing it up with a lighting change and a paint change can also help to create a bigger impact without spending money on a full renovation of your home.

Rearrange Furniture

While this tip takes much longer to complete than others, the results will be well worth it in the end. When you take the time to rearrange all of the furniture in your home, creating places with a lot of open space in the centre, then you can feel as if you are entering a room that is completely brand new. After all, you will be getting used to a layout that wasn’t there before. This can also be a great way to get some mild exercise in for the day as well, making it a beneficial project to take on over a weekend.

Work on the Windows

Windows are a big part of a house’s appearance. Because of this, it can be a noticeably large change to make some changes to your windows. Whether you choose to update the window treatments themselves or you want to add a new set of blinds and curtains, or you want to do a bit of both, you can rest assured that creating a new look for a room you are regularly in can give you a similar rush as renovating the house does for a complete fraction of the price.

Thoroughly Clean the House

Last, but not least, you can consider giving the house a thorough cleaning. This can be combined with rearranging furniture for a much better effect. Cleaning out the house, moving things around, and so on can create the sense that changes are being made to the home. Not only will your home look cleaner in the end, but you might even find things that you had thought had been lost.

There are plenty of different ways that you can breathe fresh life into your home without dropping thousands of dollars and weeks of your time on a massive home renovation. Instead, you can live comfortably in your home without putting your budget in pain using these budget-friendly suggestions.

Making Your Home Look Picture-Perfect

Many people want a picture-perfect home. The problem is knowing where to start. With a few improvements and some effort, you’ll be on your way! Whether your home is being featured in a magazine or you just want it to look spectacular, here are a few tips to achieve this!

PHOTOGRAPHY BY SARA TRAMP for Domino

Have it Thoroughly Cleaned

Since no one wants to walk into a household full of clutter, you might want to have it professionally cleaned. Knowing what to expect from house cleaning service professionals will help you understand the benefits. House cleaners often vacuum floors and carpets, change linen, dust windows, empty trash and much more. This means you can use your time working, with family, or something else besides detailing the interior of your home.

Add Unique Accents

Gold accents can add a modern touch to a home’s interior. This may include gold light fixtures, art pieces, frames or another interesting detail. Include a pop of color in strategic places with greens in a vase or a throw pillow. In order to figure out where to place objects, try standing back to look at the room. Next, imagine what you can do to give it a balanced appearance.


PHOTOGRAPHY BY JEFF MINDELL for Domino

Use Paint or Wallpaper

You can paint the walls any colors you like as long as you don’t go overboard. Try limiting your palette to three colors to maintain a balanced look. When it comes to wallpaper options, choose subtle designs and hues or go for something bolder. If you care about the environment, you can find eco-friendly wallpaper or paint by doing your own research.

Brighten it Up with Plants

You can brighten up any room or outdoor area with plants. Besides this, nature can be inspiring and aesthetically pleasing. For example, try placing one flower in a stylish vase, and put this on a table or desk. Succulents and cactus are affordable and easy to maintain. Further, consider planting an herb or vegetable garden.

Bring in Artwork

The right art pieces tend to make a statement or provoke the viewer to think. This may be a landscape painting, expressive statue or something more subtle. You can choose classic or modern pieces, or create something tasteful yourself. You find simple online tutorials, use an instruction book or take an art class. Have fun creating a picture-perfect home by using your imagination.


PHOTOGRAPHY BY SARA LIGORRIA for Domino

Let in Natural Light

Natural light can freshen up the interior of your home. Wash and clean windows and then open the curtains to let the sun’s rays in. In addition to this, your house will be more livable. Have a more positive mindset whether you work at home or just enjoy reading a book in a casual setting. Create a positive home environment for family or visitors.

Improve Curb Appeal

Boost your curb appeal to complete the improved look of your home. For one, keep the lawn mowed, and trees and shrubs trimmed. You can add shutters and paint these. Consider painting the exterior of the house if necessary. Plant colorful flowers in window boxes or purchase some in pots. Bird feeders attract birds that chirp and sing. Trees and shrubs can be attractive, and reduce sparse areas. Additionally, hang a seasonal wreath to give the look and feel of comfort.

You can try dedicating time each day or a few times a week to improving your home. Imagine what you’ll gain when you make your home look picture-perfect. For one, you could have a house you’re proud to show off or just a better place to live.

Restaurant Decor: How to Transform Your Restaurant without Renovating

We can definitely learn a thing or two about commercial decorating! Keep reading to find out how restaurants decorate their interiors!

 

There are some undeniable determining factors of what makes a restaurant great, and that is the food and the ambiance. As a patron, when you visit a restaurant, the first impression you have could be based on either one. Maybe you decided to visit based on the menu, or maybe you were walking past and chose it based on how it looked inside. Regardless of what gets you in the door, the food and the atmosphere are what will stick in your mind once you’ve left. The food is the heart of the restaurant, but the decor is the feeling of it. If your restaurant feels like it’s stagnated and you’re looking for a change, these are the two aspects you should consider revamping. Arguably, your menu should always be changing in order to offer a variety of foods and still keep it interesting for your visitors. As for your decor, it should have a classic element that makes it timeless, but also adds a little something extra to make it have some personality.

If you’re looking to do a complete menu overhaul, there are a few considerations to make, like the cost of the new menu for your restaurant and your customers, and the versatility. However, if you’re looking to update the decor of your restaurant and give the whole place a refresh without breaking the bank on costly renovations, these suggestions will help you get started.

Paint the walls

A coat of paint can go a long way, especially if you’re on a tight budget. Maybe all your restaurant needs is a fresh color to liven up the walls and bring in some personality. If you don’t want to change any of the other decor, do your best to find a color that will match your current furnishings and restaurant theme. Otherwise, you could end up with a mismatched interior that confuses guests when they arrive.

Update your furniture

Revamp your restaurant by upgrading the furniture, or replace older furniture with something new and more comfortable for your guests. Of course, you want your visitors to enjoy their time at your venue, and the furniture you have is surprisingly important to achieving this goal. New restaurant chairs and tables can completely change the vibe of your establishment, but make sure the style of the furniture fits in with your restaurant’s theme and concept.

Update the lighting

Different lighting fixtures have different effects on the mood of a room, so how you light your restaurant can totally change how your guests feel while they’re visiting. Restaurant lighting typically isn’t noticeable unless it’s done poorly, so be sure to ask an expert if you aren’t sure how to properly light your venue. Good lighting can be inviting to guests, while poor lighting can be a deterrent and make them feel uncomfortable.

Get new dishware

Old, scratched and worn out plates, bowls, glasses, and cutlery can be a big turn off to guests looking for a finer dining experience. Your dishware contributes greatly to the presentation of your food. If you want to upgrade your dining experience without spending a lot, new dishware is the way to go. It’s also a good idea to consider what kind of dishware you’ll be using if you’re revamping your menu, as these two changes go hand-in-hand.

10 Stylish Ideas For Introducing Antiques In Your Living Room

Creating an immersive living room is all about being bold and unique. In this article we show you how to bring character with ideas you may have not thought possible!

Photos Via: Pinterest Source

We take a look at the world of antiques and how the smallest of ideas can create the biggest of changes; how traditional elements such as colour schemes and paint ideas can bring changes that are easy to achieve.

1. CHOOSING THE BEST SKIN FOR A TRADITIONAL ROOM

The colour scheme of a room is the foundation of any design and the play on contrast is what makes everything so effective. Darker colours are always more traditional and work well when paired with more traditional materials. If you’re feeling like you want something less intimidating, it’s always an idea to paint one wall and contrast it with lighter tones or alternatively using whites and grey tones all round provide the perfect clean backdrop for your more traditional furniture.

2. EMBRACE PATTERNS AND TEXTURES

People always make the assumption that different patterns and textures don’t coincide. The joy of using antiques is that every room can be completely individual. You can of course opt for a more put-together design, but having everything clash isn’t necessarily a bad idea. Follow what your love and embrace whatever your heart desires. However, there is one rule – keep it 50/50. One should never overpower the other.

3. MAKE ANTIQUE FINDS THE HIGHLIGHT OF THE ROOM

If your home is already privileged enough to have a period feature, like in many cases an antique fireplace, let it be the centre of attention. By keeping everything around it neutral, there’s no doubt it’s bound to create a sense of awe when guests walk in. A fireplace is great as it can be restored almost effortlessly too.

4. A SPELL OF THE OUTDOORS

Plants are a great way to introduce a diverse air within a home (no pun intended). By adding different-sized plants and pots, within theme, you are not only making the room look fresher, but you are also providing a natural air filter for your home.

5. OVERSIZED ANTIQUES IN SMALL SPACES

When you’re playing around with a small room, big isn’t always best. However, not when it comes to antiques! By introducing items like saucer-shaped sofas or stripped down dining tables, you are creating a sense of grandeur into a small contemporary room. These focal items paired with the right modern accents can change the aesthetic of a room very quickly.

6. PLAY WITH LIGHTING 

Playing with light fixtures may be one of the easiest ways to combine the old with the new. Adding a small chandelier can create all different types of possibilities in what can seem like a simple contemporary space.

Floor and table lamps come in all different shapes and sizes too and when picked correctly can provide the right ambience for the right time!

7. PLAY WITH REFLECTION

Mirrors have a great way of being able to open up a room. What’s also amazing is that you can play with the placing, big or small, there is always a place for them. Items like a French gilt mirror add instant character to a room and can be a great way of tying the room together.

8. EXPLORING THE UNDERNEATH

Exposed and reclaimed floorboards boast all the characters of which new flooring can’t compete with. It instantly adds a new look to any room and can provide a refreshing contrast to what lays on top. Whilst they look beautiful, they are also environmentally friendly and after a job well done, it will look like a brand new floor. Re-purposed rugs can also add an element to a room that a carpet never will. Take a Persian rug for example, whilst they can be bought new, antique rugs really show the craft and technique and will most definitely add to the aesthetic of any room.

9. DECORATING YOUR WALLS 

Whilst some people may find the task of delving into antique furniture a daunting prospect, pictures are something that everyone can relate with. In a world that’s so heavily obsessed with photographs, why not invest in some frames that will visibly alter the look of any room. With this, many is never enough, and playing with different shapes and sizes is a work of art in itself.

10. RECYCLE & RECLAIM

If you ever feel like something you own is an obstacle in your road to reinvention, recycling your old furniture with a lick of paint or even just a fresh varnish will be the best thing you can ever try. Cheap but very cheerful, re-using worn furniture is the best way to spark a new joy in your living room. Websites like Craigslist provide endless amounts of items that are ready for a new home and with a bit of work will feel like they were there all along.