You’re probably ready to start relaxing and entertaining outdoors during the day and at night. For the latter, you’ll need strategically placed lighting for safety reasons. But there’s no reason why your lighting can’t be both functional and stylish.
TV host, landscape expert and realtor Matt Blashaw. Photo: Chaz Curr
Matt Blashaw, the popular HGTV and DIY host of Yard Crashers,Money Hunters and Vacation House For Free, has teamed up with the makers of Philips Hue smart lighting. Freshome asked Blashaw (who is also a landscaping expert and realtor) for some tips to help transform your outdoor spaces with the latest lighting available today.
Lights can help to create the perfect ambiance. Image: Travis Wolfe/Shutterstock
Choose the right lighting
“Make sure you use lighting that’s specifically designed to withstand the elements. It should be outdoor-rated,” Blashaw tells Freshome. There are a lot of different types of
If you’re fortunate enough to have original hardwood floors, consider restoring their original beauty. Below are tips from two hardwood flooring experts to help.
Sometimes, your floors only need a recoating. Image: Breadmaker/Shutterstock
Recoat or Refinish?
If your wood floors start to look dull, they can be renewed through recoating. “A maintenance coat involves cleaning the existing floor’s finish, then lightly sanding it,” explains Brett Miller, VP of Education & Certification for the National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA). “After that, you just need an application of a fresh new coat of wood floor finish.”
Miller recommends applying a new coat to your floors
Father’s Day is a perfect time to celebrate that special dad who works so hard and always puts family first. What better way to show your appreciation than to start thinking about creating a space that he can call his own: a man cave? This may entail transforming your basement, renovating your garage or even creating usable space in your attic.
Andy Williams of HGTV’s Flip or Flop Fort Worth gave Freshome several great tips to help us all design the perfect man cave.
Expect the man cave to be loud during sporting events. Image: Jon Feingersh Photography/Shutterstock
Creating a sports-themed man cave
When Williams conceptualizes and creates a man cave, he takes the same approach as purchasing a custom suit or a set of golf clubs. “There are so
No two individuals are alike. Similarly, each region in the U.S. has distinct styles in fashion, food and music. “These traditions and trademarks permeate all elements of the region’s culture, including into the homes of its residents,” Hannah Yeo, Color & Design Expert at Benjamin Moore, tells Freshome.
In fact, Yeo says Benjamin Moore has been able to spot a geographic design trend in how colors are being used. These are the most popular paint hues in eight cities across the U.S.
“Lighter colors are favored in the interior of the home across the nation and Los Angeles leads this trend,” Yeo says. As a hub for great design, she says white becomes an essential color in this area. “From warm pinkish white to the palest blue — or even the combination of whites —
Whether you’re thinking about remodeling your kitchen or searching for a new home and weighing your options, the kitchen setup is extremely important. And if you cook a lot, the layout of this room really matters.
Quite a few homes have galley kitchens — and the owners either love them or want to take a sledgehammer to them. But what is a galley kitchen, and how do you know if this style is right for you? Freshome rounded up several experts to help you understand the pros and cons of a galley kitchen. They also provided tips for designing a galley kitchen that you’ll love.
A galley kitchen is great for one cook at a time. Image: Ran Kyu Park/Getty Images
What is a galley kitchen and why is it used?
“A galley kitchen consists of two parallel runs of units forming a central corridor,” explains Ariel Richardson, a San
If you need extra sleeping space for guests, futons and sofa beds are two options. But have you ever considered a Murphy bed? They’re extremely comfortable and take up zero floor space when not in use. And you can choose one that complements your room’s design. Here’s what you need to know about Murphy beds.
Murphy beds work well in multipurpose rooms. Image courtesy of Murphybeds.com.
“Murphy beds have been increasing in popularity over the last five years due to smaller living spaces, downsizing and higher real estate values,” says Chelsea Williams, Retail and Internet Sales Manager at Murphybeds.com. “A Murphy bed provides you with the opportunity to have a spare bed without giving up the space for a spare bedroom,” she explains.
Dan Nelson, Principal Architect at Designs Northwest Architects, uses Murphy beds in his designs. “One of the great things about Murphy beds is
As a child, I was fortunate enough to have my own bathroom (actually, it was a Jack and Jill bathroom that I shared with the guest bedroom, but we only had guests for a handful of days out of the year). My bathroom was pink, which my parents thought was an appropriate color for a girl’s bathroom, although pink has never been one of my favorite colors. It was a very pretty but very adult-looking bathroom.
Looking back, I wonder if my parents made the right decision. How should a kids’ bathroom look? Should it reflect their style and personality? And, if it actually looks like a kids’ bathroom, how will this affect resale value? I asked some of the people known for designing bathrooms and selling homes to provide insight on this topic.
The L-shaped layout is the most popular kitchen configuration, according to the NKBA 2019 kitchen design trends. But what is an L-shaped kitchen layout? We asked a few top experts to explain this layout and provide advice for using it. After all, just because it’s popular doesn’t mean it’s the right configuration for you.
L-shaped configurations are immensely popular. Image: Svet-Feo/Shutterstock
L-shaped kitchen layout options
“The L-shaped design consists of two adjoining, perpendicular walls of cabinets that form a formidable ‘L’ shape,” explains David Shove-Brown, Partner at Washington, D.C.-based boutique design firm //3877. He says its popularity is due to the layout’s adaptability.
“Typically, one side is dedicated to smaller kitchen tasks and acts as home base for the sink and countertop appliances,” Shove-Brown says. “The other ‘wing’ is oriented for larger, more time-intensive activities, holding the range and refrigerator and offering additional storage.”
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The 2019 U.S. Houzz Kitchen Trends Study provides insight regarding the most popular kitchen trends in home improvement. The report is unique because it captures the opinions of homeowners, whereas most surveys focus on trends from the perspectives of interior designers, architects, etc.
Also, all respondents were required to meet one of three requirements: either they completed a kitchen remodel or addition in the past 12 months, they were currently working on one or they plan to start one within the next three months.
Below are some interesting tidbits from the report, along with commentary from a Houzz representative.
Would you move out during a kitchen renovation? Image: sturti/Getty Images
In terms of functionality, the sink is a vitally important part of your kitchen. It’s an important consideration in the design of your kitchen, and is essential in the hallowed kitchen work triangle.
However, with so many styles to choose from, are homeowners choosing style over function? How can you determine which type of kitchen sink is best for your needs? Freshome asked experts from Kohler, Moen, Delta and Franke Kitchen Systems for tips on understanding the function of various kitchen sink styles.
“With the evolving role of the kitchen leading to tasks beyond traditional cooking and cleaning, people are often selecting more secondary sinks,” explains Peggy Gallagher, Senior Product Manager at Delta. When choosing the right sink, Gallagher tells Freshome that there are several factors to consider, but she believes style
Who doesn’t love paint? It’s luscious and creamy and comes in every color imaginable. Regardless of the sheen — flat, eggshell, satin or gloss — painting is a great way to either radically or subtly transform your environment. Your color choices are important because they can either stimulate the senses or create a sense of calm.
However, to achieve the perfect result, you can’t just start painting willy-nilly. Following these 10 commandments of painting can help to ensure success in your selection, prep and paint process.
Get inspired before you pick a paint color. Image courtesy of Benjamin Moore.
#1: Never uses swatches as the first step
Resist the impulse to just randomly select a color swatch and start painting. If you start painting on a whim, you may later decide you don’t really like that color. Take the time to figure out what you really like.
The National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA) released its 2019 Kitchen Design Trends report. The report coincided with its annual Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS), celebrating the best in kitchen and bathroom design trends.
The report and the show reveal the most popular styles and features. They also provide indicators of what’s trending for the next three years. This includes information gleaned from professional designers, dealers, specialists, manufacturers, remodelers, general contractors and architects.
Freshome asked Elle H-Millard, Certified Kitchen Designer and Industry Relations Manager at the NKBA, for photos from the designers, and insights regarding the key U.S. kitchen design trends.
1st place large luxury kitchen designed by Philip Nikolich. Photography by Angie Agostino. Image courtesy of the NKBA.
The most popular kitchen design styles
“Transitional kitchens have dominated kitchen design and 65% of respondents said they were the most-often preferred kitchen style,” says H-Millard. “That makes
The National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA) released its 2019 Bathroom Design Trends, which coincided with its annual Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS), celebrating the best in kitchen and bathroom design trends.
Freshome has already covered the latest trends in bathroom technology and bathroom faucets. But we asked Elle H-Millard, Certified Kitchen Designer and Industry Relations Manager at the NKBA, for photos and insights regarding some of the other key U.S. bathroom design trends.
Show highlight: the Blade 3D Printed Faucet by DXV
This 3D printed faucet took home Best in Show. Image courtesy of DXV.
The Blade 3D Printed Faucet by DXV garnered a lot of attention at the KBIS. In fact, it won Best in Show. A computer-guided laser beam sinters powdered metal into the shape of the faucet with high heat and pressure. A solid metal block is formed out of the powder, and
When you’re designing a bathroom, you’re probably going to view the 2019 trends in bathroom technology and the latest faucet trends for inspiration. A water closet is another bathroom feature that is popular among some homeowners — but it’s considered unnecessary by others. So, how do you know if it’s the right choice for your home?
If you’ve never heard of a water closet, Elle H-Millard of the National Kitchen + Bath Association (NKBA) explains, “The water closet is basically a toilet in its own room.” Do you need a toilet in its own room? Let’s find out.
A water closet provides privacy. Image: Sisoje/Getty Images
Nathan Outlaw, President at Onvico, a general contracting and design-build company in Thomasville, GA, tells Freshome that he always recommends water closets for master bathrooms. “They help add privacy for the toilet user and allow a spouse to continue to use the bathroom
Few things compare to the beauty of a well-manicured lawn. Studies show that a home’s curb appeal can increase its resale value. You’ll also have a sense of pride and accomplishment, knowing that your lawn care routine is responsible for the positive results. In addition, there are environmental and health benefits of turfgrass lawns.
Curb appeal can increase your home’s resale value. Image: tab1962/Getty Images
However, the health of your lawn is dependent, in part, on proper mowing techniques. So, Freshome asked two lawn care professionals to provide best practices and tips for doing it right.
Warm season grasses grow faster in mid-summer. Images: kurham/Shutterstock
How often should you mow the lawn? “Many of us have heard the idea of mowing our lawn at least one time per week,” says Dr. Brad DeBels, Director of Operations at Weed Man Lawn Care. As a general rule, he says it’s
Wade gave us a few tips to execute before summer. Image courtesy of Chip Wade
If you’ve ever watched Chip Wade on HGTV or the DIY Network, you know he’s pretty handy, both inside the house and outdoors. Wade, who is also the Owner and Lead Designer of Wade Works Creative and a Liberty Mutual consultant, specializes in helping homeowners create the perfect indoor and outdoor spaces.
As you can imagine, he’s busy, but Freshome asked him to stop and share a few tips on how to recover from winter and get your home and yard prepped for summer.
Service your air conditioner
You don’t want your AC breaking down during the dog days of summer. Image: C5Media/Shutterstock
“I recommend checking out your air conditioning system in the spring to ensure it’s working properly before the weather really warms up,” Wade says. The first step is to change the system’s
If you hate your countertops — kitchen, bath, bar, or garage — but you’re not ready to pony up the money required to get granite, take heart. There are other alternatives, probably cheaper than the tax you would pay for granite, to transform countertops.
And the news gets even better. You don’t have to be a professional to transform your countertops yourself. We found several products that can make your countertops look a whole lot better with just a minimum amount of effort.
You’ll need a paint brush or paint roller to use Daich’s products, but don’t let that fool you. “The SpreadStone Mineral Select Countertop Finishing Kit is actually not paint at all. But it is applied with a roller or brush for an easy, paint-like experience,” explains Peter Daich,
Straight lines versus curved lines. In a study published in PNAS, participants were more likely to label a room as “beautiful” when it had curves than when it only had straight lines. Straight lines certainly serve a purpose, but they can be formal and predictable. On the other hand, curves add a level of softness and interest. Arched doorways are one way to add soft curves and elegance to any space. Below, we’ve listed some of the ways to use arched doorways in your home.
“When you are refurbishing a historic property, arched doorways are a welcome change and distinguish more important and grand entrances and corridors from mere utilitarian corridors,” says Michael Schienke, Director and Chartered Architect at VORBILD Architecture in London. However, he doesn’t think this look would work in every type of design. “In new
Do you have a favorite color? Have you ever wondered why you prefer a certain color and how it affects you? “One of the most amazing things about color is its close tie to emotions, making color extremely subjective,” according to Andrea Magno, a color and design expert at Benjamin Moore. “There are so many emotions that color can evoke, many that come from our past experiences or what innately appeals to an individual.” Your color choice can define a space.
“Colors can invoke all our emotions, from happy to sad and love to dislike,” explains Rachel Skafidas, senior color designer at Krylon. Keep reading to discover how your color choice can affect your emotions. We also explore how to incorporate this information in your home.
Caliente, the name of this vibrant red color, stimulates your appetite. Image: Benjamin Moore
There’s a reason why fire engines, fire extinguishers
If you love to read – or you just love books, whether you actually read them or not – consider creating a home library. Most people who don’t have a home library think that they don’t have enough space. But, by thinking creatively, you can find enough room to house your own books.
You don’t need thousands – or even hundreds – of books, and you don’t need wall-to-wall, ceiling-to-floor space. Below are some options for finding space to create a library that meets your needs and design aesthetic.
In the dining room
These bookshelves are the dining room’s focal point. Image: Dit26978/Getty Images
Not one, but two interior designers recommend creating a library in your dining room. “Change up the way you think about your home,” says Carolina V. Gentry of Pulp Design Studios. “You don’t have to have a formal dining room if you don’t use it, so make