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Floors That Are Good For Resale

Sep-16-2010 By carpeteria_admin

If you are about to sell your house and even if you have no current plans to sell, it is still practical to think of what you can do to your rooms to make them more appealing to prospective buyers. If you are renovating your house, even if you have no immediate intention of selling, it’s a good investment to factor the resale value of your flooring and other accessories when you remodel.
Hardwood is right at the top of the list of floors that will get you the best price should you put your house on the market. Hardwood is expensive but much more durable than other kinds of flooring. Buyers are willing to spend more for houses that have hardwood flooring than those that don’t for it assures them that they won’t have to redo those floors. Solid or engineered hardwood tends to get more in terms of resale than laminate flooring.
Since we are on the topic of hardwood and its resale value, an interesting trend has developed recently. More and more people are opting for exotic hardwood floors to increase the resale value of their house. These include African mahogany, dove-tailing, French parquets, and other unusual woods. This indicates the importance that flooring has in the resale sector.
Stone, porcelain or ceramic tile can also add value to your house. Compared to hardwood and tile, linoleum and carpeting show low resale values. So when you renovate, do away with your carpets and consider tile or wood if you wish to attract the best price for your house.

Are you ready to convert a room to a home office but not sure where to start? Taking a minute to plan your space allows you to create an environment that combines the best of commercial space and a residential environment.

Laminate floors provide one of the best options for a home office. The top quality laminates look much like traditional wood floors, but with the stamina to handle the depredations of wheeled office chairs. If you would rather have carpet or wood, be sure to pick up a mat for under the chair – either plastic from any office supply store or one of the new bamboo mats available in a number of catalogs.

Home office walls give you the opportunity to bring in a color you love that wasn’t a fit with any other space in your home. Sky blue sets a tone of relaxation, or maybe a peach works for you to echo the orange of energy. Do you need a bulletin board? How about spray painting one in a bright tone that coordinates with your walls? Most office furniture is pretty neutral, so take advantage of this chance to bring in color.

Finish up with art that makes you happy. Do you have any photos that remind you of your dreams and goals? Would a landscape draw you in when you need to escape from your work for a moment? How about a reproduction of the work of an artist that you find inspiring? Touches such as these make your office a personal and inviting place to work.

Nylon Carpet Maintenance

Aug-18-2010 By carpeteria_admin

There are a handful of activities that can keep your new carpet looking good for many years. First, review your carpet manufacturer’s warranty to identify whether they require regular hot water extraction to keep the warranty valid.

Since studies have proven that the bulk of soil on your floors comes from entryways, it is extremely important to utilize appropriate walkoff mats and entry rugs. Statistics have proven that about 80% of the soil entering your carpet comes in on the first 4-6 steps!

After entryway protection, regular vacuuming is the next most important tool you have. Soil particles have sharp edges that can damage the carpet fiber, causing a matted or crushed appearance. Areas of high traffic should be vacuumed daily. The best vacuums are those with good suction and strong beater bars, which will remove the greatest amount of soil. If your vacuum uses bags, change them regularly.

Every carpet should be deep cleaned by professional hot water extraction every 12-24 months. Don’t use a home model, as they generally lack the heat or power to adequately clean or to remove dirty cleaning water and solution.

Spills and stains must be addressed immediately! For water-based spills, blot with an absorbent, clean, undyed cloth, starting at the outside and working towards the center. Use a neutral pH cleaner, rinsing well (still blotting) with water to remove any residues. Vacuum and allow the spot to dry completely before walking on it.

Cover oil-based spots/spills completely with cornstarch, baby powder or baking soda and allow it to sit overnight. Vacuum completely in the morning. If the stain persists, repeat this process, then follow the procedure for water-based stains above.

The Four Seasons of Decorating: Spring

One fun approach to decorating is to think of a room as reflecting one of the four seasons. Design materials, colors and even furniture styles can represent a season. Let’s take a look at what spring is all about.

When you think of spring, look for light bright colors and textures. For flooring, how about a light bamboo or maple floor, with wood shutters painted a bright white. Crown molding and baseboards in white echo the window coverings, and bring a sense of light into the room.

Many colors echo the feeling of spring, but a light green and yellow can really make the space feel like April or May. For fabrics, florals are an easy choice, but think outside the box with a lattice-style pattern or a crisp check in spring tones.

Finish the space with the fresh flowers available only during the spring months – daffodil, tulip and hyacinth plants in pots scattered through the room or – even better – sitting on windowsills, adding the finishing touch. Ready for spring? Your room certainly is!

For the other seasons, click here.

What You Need to Know About Olefin Carpet

Jul-9-2010 By carpeteria_admin

How about olefin (also called polypropylene)? Certainly nylon has held the primary place in carpet manufacturing, but even so, olefin often gets the call. What is the main reason? Price. Nylon carpets of similar construction generally cost at least 20% more than an olefin. Generally, olefins are offered as berbers in residential construction. This means they come in multi-level, multi-color and usually in earth tones. The name “berber” actually was the name of an ancient North African people, who were known for their woven fabrics, which later came to be known by the name of the weavers themselves.

To date, olefin has had more commercial than residential usage. In fact, about 80% of olefin carpets have been used in commercial markets. However, because of its aggressive pricing, it is finding more prominence in residential usage. Besides being attractively priced, olefins are incredibly colorfast and extremely fade resistant—even when exposed to direct sunlight or chlorine bleach. In addition, olefin carpets are static and mold resistant, making them good choices for basements, rec rooms or screened-in patios.

Remember though, olefin does have its challenges. It is highly susceptible to oil-based staining agents. Consequently, you should never use a solvent-based stain protection treatment. In addition, the fiber has a low melting point, which means that it can actually melt from the friction of furniture being dragged across its face, causing permanent “gouges” in the carpet. Finally, olefin carpets are highly disposed to crushing and matting in high traffic areas.

What You Need to Know About Polyester Carpet

Jun-30-2010 By carpeteria_admin

It used to be simple, asking for polyester carpet. No so any longer! Today you can find “old” polyester, PET polyester and PTT polyester. Generally, most of today’s polyester carpets are manufactured from PET fibers, which are essentially produced from reclaimed plastic soda bottles. It is true that PET fibers are improved over the old polyester, but they still come with the performance challenges for which polyester has been known.

The main lure of PET carpets is price; they are inexpensive. They also feel really soft and luxurious when new. Some other points for PET carpets are their ability to resist water-based stain agents, and their amazing colorfastness. The greatest downside to PET carpet is its propensity to mat and crush quickly – especially in high traffic areas. Another significant performance challenge is the difficulty in removing oil-based stains, which if left untreated can become permanent!

PTT is a relatively new fiber, introduced by DuPont in 2000 and sold under the trade name Sorona. It is unique in that it contains 37% renewable resource content (corn-based) and sports claims of advanced stain resistance and wear characteristics – compared to older polyester generations. In fact, because of Sorona’s amazing performance in documented tests, the FTC granted DuPont a new generic carpet fiber name and classification, Triexta. Mohawk manufactures their Smartstrand carpet from this fiber.  According to both Mohawk and DuPont, triexta carpets perform every bit as well as nylon – and yet still retain the feel and stain-resistance of early polyesters.

If you would like to look at samples, come see us anytime!

Applying Basic Feng Shui Ideas to your Home: Part 3

Jun-23-2010 By carpeteria_admin

Applying Basic Feng Shui Ideas to your Home: Part 3 – Change Your Space, Change Your Life

Many of the ideas presented in the Chinese study of Feng Shui can be easily applied to any home. One of the most interesting aspects of Feng Shui is the belief that your physical space mirrors your life, and positive changes in that space can make your life better.

To start, use a compass to divide your home into the various life areas matching the beliefs of Feng Shui. The areas include career (north), fame and recognition (south), health and family (east), children and personal creativity (west), mentors and friends (northwest), education and self improvement (northeast), wealth and prosperity (southeast), and marriage (southwest). To learn more about how to energize each area, take a look at a book or website on Feng Shui. However there are some simple things you can do right away to improve your home’s energy.

Unfinished projects, withered plants and property that should be discarded as well as the wrong arrangement of furniture and accessories can drain good energy. Take an open-eyed walk through your home. Pay attention to those unfinished home improvement or fix-up projects you’ve put off. Those are energy drainers in any culture. Even though you may never see them consciously, they are distractions, constant reminders of things you want to address but haven’t bothered with yet.

Does your home energize you or discourage you? What changes can you make to create a home that is a source of energy, with room for your future goals and dreams? From hanging that picture that’s been sitting on the floor to going through old file cabinets to make space for new projects, the basic foundation of Feng Shui is valid – your space has a direct impact on your life. Why not start to make the changes and see what happens?

Applying Basic Feng Shui Ideas to your Home: Part 2

Jun-17-2010 By carpeteria_admin

Applying Basic Feng Shui Ideas to your Home: Part 2 – Corners and Curves

Have you ever wondered whether Feng Shui concepts could make your home more inviting? Although the practice is complex, many basic ideas drawn from the practice can be useful tools as you consider improving or renovating your space.

One interesting idea is the issue of chi, or good energy. In Feng Shui practice, sharp corners and edges create a room with negative energy. Softer curves are needed to counteract that and support good natural energy. If you spend time in a reception area or waiting room, often the space feels cold and unfriendly. The use of sharp chairs with no cushions and no accessories to soften corners and edges creates a feeling of harshness. A few plants and curvy lines can warm up a space.

In your home, do you have rooms that people seem drawn to and other spaces that generally stay empty during a party? Take a look at them with the concept of sharp edges and exposed corners in mind. Would some curves make a space more inviting? What do you see in your popular rooms that demonstrates this balance of hard and soft? This is a different way to look at your space. Take more than a few minutes to look around and determine what you want to do to make your rooms more welcoming and bring that good energy into your space.

Every new way of thinking about decorating your space can open up new ideas and ways of thinking. This is just one of many tools you can experiment with to enlarge your skill base and improve both the décor and the feeling of your home space.

Applying Basic Feng Shui Ideas to your Home: Part 1 – Clutter Control

Many people think of Feng Shui as all about mirrors, crystals and plants, but really it’s about the placement of objects in your space for maximum energy and comfort. While the concepts can seem complex, many of the underlying ideas are useful and applicable to any home.

One Feng Shui concept focuses on managing clutter. This means more than having a tidy living room. The clutter issues dig into every closet and cupboard. According to Feng Shui principles, hidden clutter is a sign of a distracted and confused mind. This actually makes some sense. If you’re spending time looking for things, are you really using your home, space and time well? Do you find yourself reaching for the same seven to eight outfits, and pushing clothes out of the way that you haven’t worn in years? That is a waste of energy.

If you’re ready to make a change, don’t jump into it all at once. Take one area of your home: one closet, drawer, or activity; and plan the best way to make it useful for you. Do you need to make dinner in a hurry every night? Then take a look at your pantry to decide if it’s organized to maximize your success and minimize your effort. Maybe instead of putting food away by category, you would do better setting it up by meal. Is there a mad rush every morning as the kids search for homework and school supplies? A well-organized space and a plan could change that, reducing stress every morning. Start with one project; get it working well, and then move on to the next.

Reduce your stress, increase your energy, and make your life better. Those are the basic concepts of Feng Shui. Take the opportunity to incorporate them into your life.

The Effect of Lighting on Color

Jun-2-2010 By carpeteria_admin

Why Colors Change in Different Lights and Making Sure Your Color Choices Work

Color is color, right? Not exactly. Colors change depending upon the type of light you’re using. To demonstrate this, take a patterned fabric and look it under a lamp in your home. Then take the same fabric and look at outside. The natural light of the sun has a different tint from standard incandescent or fluorescent lights. The only lights that mirror the outdoors are full-spectrum fluorescents. What’s really intriguing is that what we call natural light is actually tinted too, by our sun. If our sun was a different type of star, our “natural” light would look very different.

How does this affect our decorating decisions? It’s particularly important when shopping for new products for your home. Retail operations often have fluorescent lights, or a combination that can include halogen as well as full-spectrum fluorescent. Within your home, however, the standard light is daylight. When you are choosing colors, whether on fabric, flooring or any other source, bring the color samples to a window to see how the color looks in natural light. Not only the color itself, but how it contrasts with other colors can change with the lighting.

At home, many people are uncomfortable with the new compact fluorescent lights because we’re used to the yellow tones of incandescent lights in the evening. Many of  today’s compact fluorescents have compensated for this with full-spectrum options, as well as those that mirror the warmer tones of standard light bulbs. As you experiment with color, also take the time to experiment with lighting. You may be surprised at the difference it makes in your space.