The Carpeteria Blog

Your flooring resource for information and education

Sharing your Heritage

Jan-30-2011 By creatingyourspace

Have you seen any of the shows on television that encourage families to part with family heirlooms or collections only to spend the money on some desired purchase such as a hot tub? It seems strange to discard your heritage in exchange for a temporary luxury item.

On the other hand, having your heirlooms packed away in boxes isn’t much better. Would you like to bring your family’s past into your present? You can do it by building a vignette that tells a story about one or more of your ancestors.

This family decided to celebrate a great grandfather who studied butterflies. Some of his reference books and personal notebooks provide the background to the left on this table, topped with the magnifying glass he used in the field. One of his loveliest specimen boxes leans against a panel and his microscope is in the focal position on the table. Add a few photographs and some of his sketches and you have more than a display of older items; you have a story of part of your family’s past.

Maybe for you, a favorite story may involve some recipes and old kitchen tools from Great Aunt Violet, known as the baker in the family, complete with photos of her around the picnic table behind her house. Or a collection of old tools may be displayed in Uncle Michael’s toolbox, joined with a shot of him working, sitting on one of the bookshelves he made that you inherited.

Why not make your family’s past an integral part of your present, by taking a little time to create a vignette that represents a favorite relative or two from your past and sharing the heritage they gave you with yourself and others.

Room Fix: Piano Problems

Jan-23-2011 By creatingyourspace

Imagine sitting at that beautiful piano to play on a nice afternoon. If you are a pianist, you will discover a problem immediately. This piano faces toward the window, leaving the sheet music in shadow rather than having the outside light fall on it.

Would you rather play at night? None of the lamps are close enough to give enough light to read music. Reading music requires as much light or more than what’s needed to read a book. While lovely, it’s clear that no one in this home plays.

Part two of what’s wrong with this picture comes from the window treatments. At the left, the window covering is a simple drape of fabric with some trim. The bow window, however, seems to have inspired someone to overdo. The same fabric and trim is overwhelmed by the rosettes at the window frames and the doubtful display of fabric in the middle of the window. You get the feeling that someone picked up one of those 101 window treatments books and lost their head.

If you clean up the windows, possibly eliminate that ruffled throw pillow on the sofa to the left and replace the flowered rug with one big enough to encompass the conversation area, you have a lovely room – as long as you don’t expect anyone to play that piano.

The First Flooring

Jan-16-2011 By creatingyourspace

Sometimes a book can make you take a second look at an everyday idea or product. This is certainly the case with At Home, a new book by Bill Bryson. It focuses on things we take for granted in our homes and discusses how they developed over time.

This month all the newest in flooring will be shown at Surfaces, the largest flooring event in the U.S., so now is a good time to consider the start of flooring and the progress we’ve made.

Initially, homes were constructed to protect people from the elements. Not only were style and design unimportant, so was something as basic as comfort. Floors were simply the dirt a home was built upon, generally packed down.

Over time, wealthier people in England and other parts of Europe added layers of rushes over the dirt to keep down the dust and make the ground softer and warmer to walk on. These rushes were replenished about twice a year generally. However, don’t picture nice clean green grass or dry hay underfoot. People generally didn’t remove the old rushes; simply placing new rushes on top. This meant that floors were deep, natural havens for insects as well as worse options such as mice and rats.

Eventually wood, stone and tile replaced this practice, but choices were limited to what was available locally. Carpets, which often came from far away or were woven at home, were so valuable that they were hung on the walls or placed on tables. Certainly no one expected to walk on one.

It’s worthwhile to think of the challenges homeowners had in the past the next time you come into our showroom. You have an amazing selection of a variety of flooring materials gathered from across the world. Instead of picking up rushes, you can pick from our samples, and we will remove the old flooring before installing your new choice. And our rugs are meant for your feet, and are priced accordingly.

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.

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.

Understanding Color: Warm vs Cool Neutrals

May-25-2010 By carpeteria_admin

Warm vs. cool neutrals – which choice works best for your home.

Neutrals are wonderful tools when decorating. A completely neutral room can be both restful and sophisticated, while showing off different textures. A neutral room can also look like the person decorating it was afraid to take a chance with colors. One of the differences between the two rooms is an understanding that neutrals are not just a “safe” choice, but actually as powerful as colors.

A good place to start when analyzing neutrals is determining whether they are cool or warm. Just like colors, neutrals fall into these two categories. Warm neutrals include black, gold and tans, as well as beige. Cool neutrals feature white, gray, ivory and silver. Like colors, neutrals run on a continuum between cool and warm. If you’re not sure where a specific neutral falls, look for color undertones. If you see blue, it’s in the cool spectrum. Yellow or orange undertones take a neutral into the warm direction. Comparing neutrals can also help you decide the relative cool/warm nature of the tones.

Neutrals provide an effective background to a color-filled room, and allow two challenging colors to live in the same space without competing. Many people choose neutrals for flooring for the flexibility they provide with the rest of the space.

When bringing a new neutral into an existing room or a new space, consider the neutral or neutrals in combination with the colors you will be introducing. Pull all of your samples together when shopping, or bring store samples home to see how they work in the designated space before making your final choice. Take time to evaluate everything to give you the opportunity to make the right selections. Neutrals can be remarkable – providing the glue that pulls a room together.

How to Remove Grass Stains from Carpet

May-7-2010 By creatingyourspace

It’s SPRING! With Spring comes playing outside, parks, picnics and other fun things to do that involve…..grass. Whether it comes in on your shoes or on the knees of your children’s pants, before it happens to you – here’s how to treat grass stains on your carpet. Follow these simple instructions:

Nail Polish Remover – Two types of nail polish removers are available. One type contains acetone, a dry cleaning solvent. Use the same precautions as with other dry cleaning solutions. The second type contains amyl acetate, which is used in many paint, oil, and grease (POG) removers. Many POG removers leave residues that may cause rapid soiling. When using a POG remover, always rinse the area thoroughly with a dry solvent. (See Residue Precautions.)

Solvent – A non-flammable spot removal solution, or dry cleaning type solvent, is preferred. Exercise caution when using a solvent. Never pour it directly onto the carpet or allow it to reach the backing, because it can damage the latex that holds the primary and secondary backings together. Acceptable solvents include Carbona®, Energine®, K2R®, Goof-Off®, etc.

Detergent Solution – Mix one fourth (1/4) teaspoon of a liquid dishwashing detergent per one (1) cup of lukewarm water. NEVER USE A STRONGER CONCENTRATION! Thorough rinsing is necessary to remove detergent residues that may cause rapid soiling. It may be necessary to rinse with warm water several times to completely remove residues. (See Residue Precautions.) Care should be used in selecting a detergent. Never use a laundry detergent of any type, because laundry detergents may contain optical brighteners (flourescent dyes) that dye the fiber. Do not select an automatic dishwashing detergent because many contain bleaching agents that destroy dyes and some fibers.

Vinegar Solution – Mix one (1) cup of white vinegar per two (2) cups of water. White vinegar is a 5% acetic acid solution. It is used most often to lower the alkalinity caused by detergent solutions or alkaline spills.

Warm Water – Lukewarm tap water should be used in most cases to rinse the cleaning solutions from the fiber. Failure to completely rinse the solutions from the fiber may cause accelerated soiling.

Ammonia Solution – Mix one (1) tablespoon of household ammonia per cup of water. Please note: Be aware that ammonia, if used improperly, can cause a color change. Be sure to test a hidden area.

Call a Professional – Professional cleaners have the ability and the equipment to use more aggressive cleaning solutions to remove stubborn spills. Always consider consulting a professional cleaner regarding any spot removal question. Carpet and Rug Institute – 1-800-882-8846

The Italian Impressions Style

Apr-27-2010 By carpeteria_admin

Is the past your passion? Is your television stuck on the History Channel?

Do you crave objects aged and worn, rooms of heavy woods and wrought iron? Is your ideal home more civilized than homogenized, more European than New World?

If so, your lifestyle is Italian Impressions Style.

It was born in countries on the Mediterranean Sea such as Italy, France and Spain. Countries where sun and soil, culture and custom, inspired charming homes and carefree lifestyles – the sweet life.

The Italian Impressions Style exhibits a European sense of history and casual elegance. It’s all about heritage and ancient rituals: socializing in the plaza, shopping at the market.

An Italian Impressions Style home, your home, reflects sophisticated living that’s elaborate and gracious. This is a residence of detail and ornamentation.

Collected treasures from the past are proudly on display; furniture is of heavy fabric, thickly cushioned and ornate in style.

One variation of this style, European Country, showcases mismatched furniture, heavy brocade details, French antiques and tapestries.

Tuscan inspired materials, distressed furniture, and natural, old country elements are also its characteristics. Another interpretation of Italian Impressions Style is Mediterranean.

Its ornate ceilings and woodwork, period windows, columns and arches create rooms for elegant living and inspired entertaining.

Wherever you choose to live in Italian Impressions Style, there are classic “musts”. These include tumbled travertine marble, distressed woods and metals and Patina finishes such as copper and oil rubbed bronze.

Your home’s color palette shows greens, golden hues, chocolate browns and wine reds.

In your Italian Impressions Style kitchen, family and friends experience cherry cabinetry with chocolate glaze and oil rubbed bronze hardware.

Natural stones like Granite countertops are a given.

Your tile is in the tumbled travertine family featuring mosaic borders mixed with metal decorative tiles.

This is the Italian Impressions Style lifestyle. Your way of living.

To learn more about other design styles, click here.

Hardwood Maintenance Video

Apr-22-2010 By creatingyourspace

Hardwood Maintenance Video

Apr-22-2010 By carpeteria_admin