Monday, April 28, 2008

Enlighten Your Kitchen

Studies show that the kitchen is a major gathering spot, so why not make it look the best it can? It doesn't require a million dollar remodeling job just try making one or two lighting changes.

Track lights allow you to direct light anywhere and, with their multiple fixtures they can perform many different purposes. You can even use specialized fixtures to create mood lighting or task lighting.
Combining them with a typical kitchen fixture gives you a variety of choices for lighting your kitchen. You can use them to provide traditional lighting during the busy part of the day, and then to provide dim lightning during the evening.
Track lighting also helps you to see the hard reach spots in your kitchen so you can clean them to your satisfaction.

Recessed Lighting is particularly useful for highlighting new cabinets or artistic wall designs. It is also helpful for illuminating dark cabinets so that they can be cleaned more proficiently.

Under Cabinet Lighting help illuminate overshadowed countertop space making it easier to prepare food and sit and read while you eat. Lights should be installed uniformly, near the front of the cabinet. You can use either halogen or fluorescent lights. The first won’t last as long, but will create a white light that is easier to work by. Fluorescent lights

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Rough Weather, Beautiful Deck

Weather in Michigan is radical. Whether it's winter or spring you never know what to expect. Sun, rain, and snow can be detrimental to the condition of an outside deck. However, it turns out there is a way to protect your deck from showing the season.

You start off by thoroughly cleaning your deck to remove dirt, mold, mildew stains and weathered gray surface wood. This can be done with an acid-free, biodegradable deck cleaner. Be careful if you use chlorine bleach as a cleanser as it tends to degrade the structure of the wood.

Maybe you want to refinish your deck, or just give it a new look. If so, all you have to do is use a stain and finish remover.

Once you have cleaned and restored your deck it's time to protect it. Use a stain or finish that will repel water and that contains a UV-blocking pigment to protect against damage by the sun's rays. You can even use a transparent oil finish, which will give your new or weathered wood a beautiful oil sheen. Oil finishes will also protect against the rot and decay caused by mildew and fungi growth.

Protecting your deck from the elements may take a little work, but your neighbor's awe is worth it.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Say Goodbye to Flat Boring Walls

Bring new life to your walls by using texture to add style and dimension. Textured stencils are quick and easy to use, and can be bought from any paint or craft store. The only trick is trying to decide which stencil is best for the surface you wish to revitalize.

Once you've made your decision all you need are some painters' tape or repositionable spray adhesive, measuring tape, a metal trowel, and a texturing medium. Before you begin to use the stencils you must make sure your previously painted or primed surface is clean, dry, free of dust, and sound enough to work with.

As soon as you have all your tools together, you just follow the reference guide on the stencil. Using painters' tape or repositionable spray adhesive, position the stencil onto the chosen area on the wall and press down firmly.

If you want to give your walls a multi-dimensional look, Modern Masters recommends that you use Modern Masters Texture Effects Multi-Purpose Texturing Medium instead of ordinary latex paint. Texture Effects is very useful as an all-over wall texture and for stenciling. It can also be used to create raised reliefs and heavily distressed textures. Durable and versatile, this painting marvel can also be tinted to any color with universal colorants or at a local paint store.

Perhaps you want the ultimate texture look for your walls. In order to achieve this effect you must first use Texture Effects to create an all-over wall texture. Once this has dried, you use your texturing medium to add a stenciled look. Finally, you trowel Texture Effects over and through the stencil at a flat angle. Be sure to do this with a light even pressure, like you would to ice a cake, otherwise the material will be pushed under the stencil and your texture will be ruined.

After you have smoothed and evened out your chosen texture, you can remove the stencil. To do this, carefully lift the stencil and pull it straight away from the wall. Repeat this pattern and texture throughout the surface, and then be ready to invite everyone you know to admire your beautifully textured walls.