Monthly Archives: July 2012

Chic and Cheap Garden Ideas


The following is a guest post


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Summer is most definitely here and the vast majority of us are looking forward to spending long days and nights in our gardens, socialising, playing and relaxing.

However, if your garden is in need of a little love and attention, you will find the following ideas perfect for helping to turn your patch of earth into an extra room of your home.

Garden Hammocks

Garden hammocks are this season’s hottest outdoor accessory. They look cute and will add a touch of luxury to your backyard. It’s the perfect place to relax and enjoy the world going by and can be improved even further with the addition of some brightly coloured cushions and a warm snuggly blanket.

Garden hammocks can be freestanding or simply tied between two trees or wooden posts. There are several online tuition sites demonstrating how to make garden hammocks, or they can be purchased relatively cheaply online or from most garden or DIY stores. Check out the Home and Garden section of the Promo-Codes website for more inspiration.

Regenerate your garden furniture

With the phrase ‘Make do and mend’ fast becoming the mantra of 2012, an increasing number of people are choosing to upcycle old items of furniture rather than splashing out on new.

PVC and plastic furniture can be deep cleaned and given a face lift by using a good commercial cleaner and then painted with a layer of primer followed by a second layer of exterior paint. Wooden furniture can be sanded down and treated in a similar way, paying special attention to any wobbly legs or loose seats.

Choose paints in soft, pale colours that blend with your indoor colour scheme, and then cover the seats with plump cushions and warm woollen or fleecy blankets, which will be perfect for keeping warm during the cooler evening as well as looking chic and inviting.

Garden Bunting

If you want to add a touch of vintage glamour to your al-fresco dining area, the addition of some garden bunting is a good choice. It can be made easily and cheaply using offcuts of contrasting fabric. A mixture of spots, stripes and floral prints in contrasting colours looks fantastic.

Simply cut triangles measuring 20cm across by 25cm long using pinking shears. Press a long length of 2.5cm wide white cotton tape in half lengthways then slip the tops of the triangles into the folded tape. Stitch the triangles into place once you are happy with their positioning.

Garden Lighting

If you get your garden lighting right, your garden will become a glorious, glowing living-room to be enjoyed long after the sun goes down. Different parts of the garden require different lighting systems – keep in mind lighting that will make specific activities easier. For example, brighter lighting is preferential along walkways and entrances, but seating areas will require more subtle ambient lighting.

Paint a pot

Purchase one or two terracotta pots or wooden planters and set to work transforming them with paints. This is something your children will enjoy being involved in, and they will love painting flowers, butterflies or simply adding handprints onto the pots.

Once finished, protect with a layer of weather-proof clear varnish and fill with cheerful daisies or marigolds. Simple, cost effective and fun.

This article was written by Kathrn Thompson, a freelance writer specialising in beautiful home décor on a budget

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Creative Children’s Room Ideas

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When decorating or updating your kid’s bedrooms it can be very tempting to stick to tradition; blue football themes for the boys and pink fairy themes for the girls.

However, with so much creative inspiration out there, it would be a shame not to break with tradition and unleash your creativity in order to create a personal special space or fantasy world for your little ones.

Try any one of these inspiring ideas to help turn your kids bedrooms from dull to dazzling in a weekend:

What’s special about your child?

Your child will have several hobbies or interests that are unique to them and you should use these ideas as the starting point for the theme of the room. For example, if your child is crazy about dinosaurs think about setting up a leafy camouflage den in the centre of the room filled with green cushions, blankets and dinosaur books for a cosy reading area. Set up a low shelf containing plastic boxes filled with sand and ‘real’ dinosaur bones, which could be dug up, like real palaeontologists.

Favourite days out

Do you remember that amazing day at the beach where you are your kids spent all day playing, eating ice creams, collecting shells and making sandcastles? Special moments like these can be captured and treasured by making a feature of them in your child’s bedroom. Paint the walls in neapolitan ice-cream coloured stripes and add fun accessories such as a brightly coloured deckchair or framed postcards or pictures from the day.

Make a display shelf and fill it with shells and driftwood collected from the beach, which can be added to over time.

Upcycle Furniture

If your garage is filled with old furniture and mementos from your childhood that you can’t bear to part with, then why not upcycle them, making them a feature of your little ones bedroom?

Your old bedframe or blanket box could be easily sanded down and given a fresh lick of paint and new lease of life. Don’t be afraid to change handles and add new accessories such as a hanging heart or funny sign.

Old furniture, which is perfect for upcycling can also be found on online auction sites and delivered via courier. This is a cheap and fun way to add character and a shabby chic vibe to bedrooms.

Make it even more special by asking your child to help with the project, this is a great way to help them feel involved and will offer you a chance to reminisce and chat about your childhood memories.

Blackboard Wall


If you have an entire wall free for decorating, or need a quick decorating suggestion that can be achieved in an afternoon, then why not try blackboard paint? It really is a child’s dream – a wall they can scribble on to their hearts content, without fear of being told off! Blackboard walls are also fantastic for parents to write reminders or funny notes to their children on – no more forgotten chores or missed homework!

Blackboard paint is widely available in most major DIY stores and is quick and easy to apply to walls.

This article was written by Kathryn Thompson, a freelance home décor and interiors writer. Kathryn enjoys upcycling old furniture purchased from online auction sites for her children’s bedrooms.

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Dealing With a Stressful Move

The following is a guest post

One of the most stressful parts of a person’s life can be moving to a new location. Even if you are just moving across town, moving can still be a taxing experience on one’s mind and body. To help your move go as smoothly as possible, here are some tips that you can follow:

1. Hire a moving company

Hiring a moving company is essential if you are moving a few hours away or outside of the state. A moving company does all of the heavy hauling, so you do not have to do this hard labor. You will want to make sure that a moving company has insurance in the event that anything is damaged during the moving process. If anything is damaged, then the moving company will be able to replace the item at no cost to you.

2. Get friends to help

Perhaps you are only moving a few minutes away. Even in this event, you should ask some friends to help you on the day of the big move. If you are living alone, moving all of your heavy furniture and other belongings can just be downright stressful. Having some friends to help you move into your new place will make the process a little more light-hearted and allow you to enjoy some good company. Friends may also have access to equipment that makes the move much easier for you, such as a moving truck or bins for your dishware.


3. Make a list of all belongings

Before you move into your new place, make a list of everything that you are bringing with you. This will make it easier for you to locate something if it happens to get lost during the move. The worst thing that can happen to you is that you forget a couple of boxes in your attic or accidentally leave something with a friend. Having a list will just make you feel more psychologically secure during the big move.

4. Settle into your home.

When you finally do get everything moved into your home, make sure you take a day or two off of work to enjoy your new place. Allow yourself to mentally settle into your new place in life and enjoy the next chapter. You will likely only move a few times in your life, so you deserve to have your moment and enjoy it!

Remembering these tips will help you have an easy and smooth move. You will be able to relax and take it easy if you remember these tips!

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Relax With Stress-Free Furnishings

When you come home you want to make sure that your home is relaxing and enjoyable. That is why I always suggest that you know your going to come home to a comfortable space, because your home is designed that way. Homes in the magazines look amazing but is that furniture really comfortable? Many times it’s not, but what if it could be?


That is where the Stressless furniture by Ekornes comes to sweep you off into comfort. I recently tried out a recliner and fell in love with it. I had to make myself get off of it so I wouldn’t fall asleep. That’s what I get for doing research after working all day! The good news is it was really a great time to check out furniture. If it doesn’t work when your tired and could sit on anything, then it’s not going to work for you, but with the stress less line of products I believe that will work for anyone!

Stressless Features

1 – The perforated foam, molded directly over the frame, gives you better seating comfort as the indentations let you sink deeper into the seat and back of the recliner. Comfort Zones™ (pat. pend.) provide you with a proper contour for your body; they give good ventilation and guarantee that the cushions will be long-lasting and forever comfortable.
2 – A soft polyurethane foam pad ensures optimum softness.
3 – The pad of soft polyurethane foam is covered by a layer of super-soft polyester fibre, for a real touch of luxury.
4 – Flexo springs on a steel frame ensure durable construction and strength.
5 – The Plus™ system automatically provides correct support for your head and lower back. The function is double-sided for maximum stability, functionality and lifetime use.
6 – Only genuine top-grain leather covers the front and back of Stressless chairs.
7 – The Stressless glide system automatically adjusts to your body weight, with no buttons or levers to pull.
8 – The two-stem base offers far smoother turning and stability than the one-stem swivels fitted on most recliners.
9 – The concealed swivel ring means that you can easily turn full circle. And the gracefully curved shape of the base is designed for great strength and durability.


Why you ask? Well, because the line is not just about your comfort, but about style also, if your reading this blog then you want style and you don’t want to just look at it, you want to know where you can get it, and how you can use it in your home. Furniture is sometimes hard to get right, but with a little help you can get a great design with your new home furnishings.


What is really unique about the Stressless line is that it is designed to adapt to your weight. This means you will be more comfortable while sitting, reclining or laying down. Furniture should be comfortable and if your not comfortable, you should not be sitting in the chair or sofa you are on! 

Design wise this is really a great way to go. It doesn’t matter if you like the classic style or modern looks. They really have a style for anyone and you can design the furniture to fit your needs and it could work well with your current living room furniture. Pick your fabric, legs and more on many models. Really there is no way you couldn’t find something you really loved. 

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