Top 5 Kitchen Appliance Trends

 

Home is where the heart is. But if we’re being honest, the kitchen is really where the heart is. The kitchen is where the family gathers, guests linger and delicious meals are created and enjoyed. Over the years kitchens have gone from a place hidden in the back of the house to a centerpiece of both function and style. While style is always a matter of personal preference, we’ve rounded up a few of the latest kitchen appliance trends for you to check out…juuuust in case there’s a little remodeling in your future. (Or of course, just want to stay up on the latest trends).   Continue reading

Summer is a Great Time for a Kid’s Room Re-Do

DISCLOSURE: THIS IS A SPONSORED GUEST POST FOR HMS HOME WARRANTY.


Now that kids are home for the summer, getting their ideas – and help – with a bedroom remodel can be a great family activity. All it takes is a little elbow grease and a few hours to make any kid’s room look completely different, and better match their ever-evolving tastes. Read More

2017 Decor Trends

If you are looking for new ways to improve your home this year, take note of what is IN this year. The 2017 home design trends have a lot to do with color, texture, shapes, simplified living spaces, and taking traditional designs and putting a modern spin on them.
 

Textured Furniture

 

Textured furniture is different and unique and is making its way into 2017 because of the way designers want their customers to be more in touch with textures. Anything from pleats, foldings, cotton, velvet, and wool will be making it’s way in homes this year. This is coming from a larger macro trend of comfort according to Patti Carpenter, the Global Trend Ambassador and Creative Director from Carpenter Co. She adds “you will continue to see faux fur, mohair, and other luxuriously soft materials in 2017.”

 
 

Hanging Pendant Lights

 

 

Table lamps are out, and hanging lights are in! This trend is important for small spaces that do not have the space for a nightstand for lamps to still be able to bring light into a room. Recently, geometrical lighting shapes have made their appearance in homes and are here to stay. Hexagonal, cylindrical, and spherical shapes have been common in bedrooms, entryways and living rooms. You will also see large pendant lighting in kitchens making a comeback in 2017.
 
 

White and Wood Kitchens

 

 

If all of the bright colors and geometric shapes are not your cup of tea, then consider going simple with a modern twist on country chic with a white and wood kitchen. Butcher block countertops are the way to go. They are affordable, durable (if maintained properly), add warmth and natural coloring, and wood has natural antibacterial properties. Paired with white cabinets and accessories, a white and wood kitchen is IN this year.

 
 

Tech Nooks

 

 

This year, “docking stations” have become all the rage for homeowners. Now that Wi-Fi gives many people to have the luxury to work from anywhere in their home, there is less need for an office space. So now “tech nooks” have become the necessity for quick and easy access. As long as there are charging stations, and small equipment for drop-down or pull out desk surfaces, you can have ability to tackle quick projects.

 
 

Beige

 

As grey became the hottest neutral color in 2016, beige is making it’s comeback in 2017. Even though beige has a reputation of being boring, there are ways to incorporate this color to give it the pizazz it deserves. Try pairing it with bold color accessories, or even pastels to see how easily it can compliment other colors. Also try pairing it with textures (Also a 2017 design trend!) such as velvet, metallics and natural linens.

 
 

Mixed Patterns

 

If you love patterns, then this 2017 design trend is the one for you! As spotted in the Fall of 2016 New York Fashion Week, the use of mixed patterns were very common (It has been said that many decor trends stem from New York Fashion Week.) You will find anything from mixed pattern bedding, like the comforter above, to patterned tiles, to wallpaper patterns. “Expect geometric patterns, vintage feel patterns, colours, and random patterns that can be used in a variety of applications. A punch of patterned tile is the perfect way to add interest and depth to any new space or renovation!” said Jennifer Woch from House of J Interior Design.

 

 

Preserving Your Historic Home

PreservingYourHistoricHome

If you’re lucky enough to live in a character-filled historic American home, by now you realize the importance of ensuring that it remains preserved in its historic condition so as to accurately represent the historic period in which it was built.
Many historic homes of significant age have been left to wilt in disrepair for decades, requiring a complete renovation in order to restore their grandeur and beauty. However, if your historic home has been well-maintained, it obviously won’t need a total overhaul to fall in line with its proper design time period.
Regular care, upkeep and repairs (as needed) will guarantee that your historic home holds onto its historic character and curb appeal. What follows is a list of features on the exteriors of historic homes that make the biggest impression. Pay close attention to these areas of your historic home:
  • Shutters – From the late 1700s into the early 1900s, proper shutters were used functionally in order to offer protection from the elements (usually rain or hail) while still allowing the homeowner to enjoy the outside air through the shutters’ vented slots. Although shutters are still found on many homes today, they often don’t have the same size dimensions that traditional historic shutters had. Today’s imitation/non-functional shutters are purely decorative; in order to stay in line with your home’s historic period, the shutters should be large enough to cover the entirety of the window(s) they surround when pulled closed (if it were possible to do so).

 

  • Exterior doors – If your historic home’s exterior doors are currently painted white, take a closer look around the edges or in any nicks in the paint. Many historic homes still standing today originally had dark-colored outside doors as well as window sashes. If your home was built in the 1800s or early 1900s, select an extremely dark green or black for at least the front entry door. The window sashes should be painted to match.

 

  • Storm doors – The storm doors we see on homes today were added after the home was originally built and don’t fall in line with the historical design of the rest of the home. To improve the look of your home’s entry, select a storm door with very little paneling or design on it. Opt for full-view so that your (now appropriately dark) front door can shine through. It’s best to choose a storm door made from a material that can easily be painted to match the color of your dark front door, like wood or metal.

 

    • Exterior coverings – Many older homes were covered with siding in the mid-1900s. By removing as much artificial siding (aluminum, vinyl, etc) as possible, you’ll literally be exposing your home’s original design. Ideally, you’ll be able to remove siding from all sides of the home; alternatively, remove as much as possible. Expose the original brick or stone that was used to build the home for maximum curb appeal.

 

By keeping your historic home within the design styles used when it was built, you’re performing a very important task in helping us hold onto our valuable American history.

In Home Studios – Behind the Scenes

In Home Studios – Behind the Scenes

In Home Studios- Behind The Scenes

Whether you’ve just purchased a brand new house that has room for an in-home studio or you’re rehabbing an older home to include a personal recording studio, the concept may seem a bit overwhelming at first. However, once you learn which essentials you’ll need, you may actually find the process to be surprisingly easy.

 

Perhaps “easy” isn’t the right word; however, an in-home studio doesn’t have to be so complicated as to overwhelm you before you even make any headway. Starting with abasic recording studio is ideal for anyone who is just starting out.

 

Your budget will have a lot to do with the equipment you’re able to start off with. An important thing to remember is that recording equipment truly does have a ‘cheapness threshold,’ and anything that falls below that threshold simply isn’t even worth recording with. Serious recording artists, whether amateurs or with some experience, should wait to build an in-home studio until you can at the very least afford the following items:

 

  • At least one microphone – Naturally, your studio will probably grow to include many more mics in the future, especially if you plan to record groups or if you yourself are involved in a musical collaboration with several people. For starters, though, one quality microphone will usually suffice.

 

  • A set of headphones – Of course, another must-have for any recording studio is a decent set of headphones. You may only ever need one set if you do all of your recording on your own, but if you end up needing more later, you’ll have saved up more money by that point.

 

  • A computer – Purchasing the best and fastest computer appropriate for recording music will be quite expensive. If you have the means to afford a super-fast computer now, by all means, go for it. However, in general it is possible for most modern computers to handle the tasks required for recording studios. There may be some lag and glitches here and there, but if you can’t afford the ultimate recording computer, you can use your own personal computer as you get started.

 

  • Recording software – This is a must-have, because it will be the program that you use to mix and edit all of your recordings and sounds.

 

  • Recording hardware – Also referred to as the Audio Interface, your recording hardware is what you use to get all of your recording gear connected.

 

  • Speakers/Monitors – While the newbie may still refer to them as speakers, in the recording world they’re called monitors. They differ from traditional sound speakers by having a flatter sound that makes it easier to mix.

 

  • Quality wiring/cables – Without a doubt, you’re going to need to invest in a lot of high quality sound cables if you plan to use your recording studio seriously. As you start out, only buy the cables you absolutely must have (for now you’ll need some for your microphone and speakers/monitors) because they can be quite pricey.

 

To add to this list, you can also purchase a microphone stand, or let this wait until a bit later in your home studio journey. With everything listed above, you are set up to begin recording!

Sound Systems: How to Listen to Music this Summer

Sound Systems: How to Listen to Music this Summer

Sound_systems

As you plan fun and exciting adventures with your friends and family this summer, some of them are bound to find you entertaining at home, especially if you have a welcoming outdoor living space and/or swimming pool.
 

Relaxing with your loved ones in the comfort of your own home has a variety of benefits – not the least of which is the money you’ll save over gathering at a fancy restaurant, club or hotel. Being at home is also where we’re all our most authentic, relaxed and comfortable.
 

If you’ve invested significantly in an outdoor living and entertaining area, you’re quite likely to have multiple get-togethers at your place as the weather heats up – especially if you have a pool. However, keep in mind that although your guests will undoubtedly spend countless joyful hours splashing about, they’ll eventually get hungry and ready for a change of pace.
 

Accordingly, in planning summertime events at home, ensure that everyone will have plenty to eat by asking each guest to bring one hot food, beverage or dessert item. Additionally, prepare other ways to keep everyone entertained and happy. One thing that’s certain is that music is a universal form of pleasure! If your party eventually moves indoors, just be sure that your indoor stereo system is queued up ahead of time.
 

If you want to add to the summer ambiance by providing your friends with outdoor music, there are several good ways to make this happen:
     

  • Portable speakers for your mobile phone – These are probably the most commonly used and popular way to listen to music when among friends without plugging up your ears with earbuds, thereby making conversation nigh on impossible.

 

  • Wired outdoor speakers – A little more involved and expensive than portable speakers is a permanent set of speakers made specifically to stand up to any and all kinds of weather. The sound quality you’ll get from a permanent, wired sound system will blow any portable speakers out of the water. Many sound systems today also have the option to plug in your mobile device so you can play music directly from your favorite playlist.

 

  • Fake rock speakers – A double entendre, these speakers can indeed play rock music with the bonus of also looking like natural sandstone rocks that belong in your backyard. If you’re not into the look of high tech stereo equipment hanging around your pool or lounge area, a set of Bluetooth rock speakers will do the trick quite nicely while looking like a real piece of nature. Most decent rock speakers, like the set by Sound Appeal, found on Amazon, are rugged and hold up quite well to most weather conditions.

 

  • Go old school with a portable radio or boombox – If your gathering is relatively small, and your crowd prefers to listen to CDs or the radio, you can opt for a number of extremely affordable boombox options that also have the added benefit of being super portable. This might be the route to go if you’re listening to a sports broadcast, reminiscing over favorite albums, or have a favorite radio show you and a few friends enjoy listening to together.

Listing of the Week

Listing of the Week

thumbnail_LOTW_MainStreet_blog

 

This week’s listing is a

special one because it is the 2016 O’More Show House! This year, twenty-two spaces will each be presented by individual designers from around the Southeast, many of whom are graduates of O’More College of Design in Franklin. This home is located at 1006 W Main Street in the National Registered-listed Hincheyville Historic District. It was built in 1919 and is a beautifully designed brick and stucco Craftsman-style home. The owners of this home completed an entire renovation of the interior of the home, and kept the street-view outside of the home the same to keep to the old southern charm. From now until May 27th, you can purchase tickets to tour this home to see the fabulous and unique designed spaces and all of the ticket proceeds benefit the O’More College fund. Open Tuesday-Sunday 10am-4pm, Thursday 10am-7pm and closed Mondays. You can purchase tickets here. This is listed by Danny Anderson the Managing Broker of the Parks on Main office in Downtown Franklin and you can view this listing here.

How to Prepare for a Home Renovation

How to Prepare for a Home Renovation

How To Prepare for a Home Renovation

Getting ready for a home renovation can be very exciting. You have probably been looking forward to fixing problems and/or giving your abode a new style or look. Many people wait years to be able to afford the home improvements needed to make their house truly feel like home.

 

Along with the thrill of the end result comes the drudgery of making it through the day to day processes involved in home repair. Your daily routine will undoubtedly be interrupted, household items may be hard to find, and there is likely to be a fair amount of saw dust and paint fumes in the air.

 

In order to survive the duration of your home renovation, there are some things you can do to make the entire process tolerable for everyone involved.

 

Plan Ahead

To ensure that important household items will be accessible during the renovation, give yourself plenty of time before the project starts to be able to clear out the room(s) that will be worked on first. Move frequently needed items into another room. You may even want to set up a makeshift supply area so that you’ll never have to sort through boxes to find something.

 

Be Clear with the Builders

Talk with your home renovation team’s leader before demolition starts. Make sure that both of you are on the same page regarding the project’s timeline and precisely which areas of the house will be unusable during construction.

 

Protect Your Furnishings

Because any home renovation comes with a significant amount of dust due to sawing and sanding, it’s crucial to cover your nearby furniture with plastic. Also, if your builder doesn’t provide a plastic covering at the entryway to the construction area, put one up yourself. It will keep dust from travelling throughout the entire house.

 

Plan for the Unexpected

Anyone who has experienced a home renovation before will tell you that they are never without problems. Even the smoothest renovation will inevitably have some things that just don’t go as planned. Be prepared for late or damaged deliveries, hidden problems that you didn’t know about (mold, termites, asbestos), misunderstandings with your builder and more. As long as you can accept that no project is 100% without mishaps, you will be better able to handle problems as they arise without getting stressed out.

 

Over Budget

It goes without saying that the above “worst case scenarios” will end up costing more money that you originally budgeted. You’ll get the end result of your dreams if you have enough money to fix things that you weren’t expecting. Don’t start a home renovation project unless you have a solid 15-20% buffer in your budget set aside for the unexpected.

 

All in all, you will undoubtedly be thrilled with your home’s new look and feel once all of the workers have left and all of the dust has settled. Living in a house while it’s being remodeled definitely comes with a host of challenges; however, good planning will mean that the challenges won’t be insurmountable.