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Category Archives: Home Improvement

Storage and Organization Ideas for the Home Office

If you’re anything like me, the home office is quick to become a collect-all for piles of papers yet to be gone through, books and bills that need to be paid, amongst numerous other items that lack a proper place in the house. It is also the easiest to neglect, because when my desk becomes piled with junk, I simply take my laptop into the living room or dining room to get work done. By creating storage places for all these things, though, you will never have an excuse to avoid the home office again.

Closet organizers

Boxes of old file folders don’t need to lurk in the corners any longer; if your home office is technically a bedroom, it probably has a closet that can be utilized for organizing boxes of documents and even office supplies. Purchase closet organizers with multiple shelves to house items of various sizes. Label boxes and baskets to help identify their contents. Then close the doors and forget about what is behind them until you need something from within.

Re-purposed furniture

I have discovered that unused furniture, such as old dressers, can work well to organize random gadgets and office supplies. One drawer can hold papers that need to be filed, while another contains documents to be shredded. Store writing utensils, notepads, extra staples and other office supplies in a drawer divided with a kitchen drawer divider of the proper size. The top of the dresser can be a great place to keep your printer.

Furniture is the perfect thing to complete the entire look of the office to give it an authoritative and well maintained look but if a chair throne is added, it will give a stamp of regal bearing and you can visit chairthrone stores in the vicinity for better models.

Mobile drawer banks

Those three-drawer banks on wheels have many different uses, one of which is to store my copy paper, envelopes, file folders and anything else that fits. It is clear, so you can easily see what is inside each drawer without having to open each one until you find what you’re looking for. Plus, the wheels make it easy to move around the office as necessary.

Decorative baskets

If you have open shelving, you might find that it becomes cluttered quickly. This is where decorative baskets come in. They look great, and work wonderfully to organize smaller items in the office. Large, shallow baskets are great for holding loose papers. Smaller ones can be used to separate smaller office supplies.

Mail organizers

Does your mail usually end up in a pile on the dining table or desk until you find time to go through it? Mine does. There are various items that can be used to organize mail as it comes in, making it easier to go through later. I currently have a hanging organizer with three slots for separating mail, but baskets would work just as well.

All About Carpet as Flooring Material

With improved fiber and finishing technology, carpets are better value than ever. Whether you’re a traditionalist or after one of the latest animal prints, like plain carpets or imaginative borders, there’s one to suit. Even asthmatics, usually steered clear of carpets, will find one endorsed by the British Allergy foundation.

Halls and stairs need the heaviest duty carpets, followed by living areas and then bedrooms, where you can get away with less robust types. There’s currently no grading scheme, though a new European standard is expected soon and this is likely to pinpoint where carpet should be used. Use a professional fitter to lay carpets, who will also give an estimate of quantities.

Carpets are either woven, tufted (Hessian or foam backed) or bonded, which means they don’t have a pile. Woven carpets (Ax Minster or Witt on) are more expensive as the pile and backings are woven together giving extra durability. Tufted foam backed carpets are less durable and suitable mainly for bedrooms.

Carpets: wool or synthetic?

  • Acrylic: acrylic looks and feels like wool and is often blended with other fibers. It has good stain resistance.
  • Nylon: very hard wearing and will resist crushing if in a dense twisted pile otherwise once flattened the pile is difficult to restore. Top quality brands can almost feel like wool although cheaper ones attract dirt and feel harsh. Static is now much reduced.
  • Polyester: warm underfoot, it keeps its color well and is abrasion resistant, but the pile is difficult to restore.
  • Polypropylene: inexpensive and durable but it has a harsh feel so is often used in wool blends. It flattens easily so low loop piles are common. Carpets containing this fiber are non absorbent, colorfast; they resist abrasion and are low in static.
  • Wool: the most expensive type of carpet with good insulation properties and resistance to soiling and flattening. Frequently blended with 20 percent nylon for good looks, greater resilience and durability, it is ideal for heavy duty areas. Like all woven carpets, it can not if over-wetted.

Watch points

When you choose your carpet, take a photograph of the room or rooms with you to help find the right color or pattern.

Underlay

Choose the best quality you can afford. A good underlay can prolong the life of your carpet so never use an old one with a new carpet. It will also prevent draughts through floorboards and act as sound proofing. Choose between;

  • Felt made from matted fibers: top of the range and will resist indentations.
  • Paper felt: used under foam backed carpets.
  • Solid rubber: hard wearing but not as springy as waffle rubber.
  • Waffle rubber underlay: sold in different weights from light use to heavy duty.

Carpet pile

The closer the tufts the more hard wearing the carpet can be:

  • Looped in and out of the backing; low loops are very hard wearing and often called corded if very tightly looped.
  • Cut, but short dense cut pile (velvet) is susceptible to shading and shows up tread and furniture marks. A less dense pile is known as Saxony carpet and shag pile is the longest cut pile and should be avoided on stairs. Twist pile is twisted cut pile, the more tightly twisted, the greater the durability and resistance to flattening.
  • A combination of cut and looped for a textured effect.
  • A Berber carpet that can be cut or loop with flecks of contrasting color throughout.