How to Protect Your Home from Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are capable of spreading very fast in your home. They can move from an infested site into a new structure by crawling on bedding, furniture, clothing, boxes, and pretty much anything!

Although bed bugs only feed on blood every 5 to 10 days, they are quite resilient. They can even survive several months up to a year without sucking any blood! Proper pest control Scottsdale AZ is necessary to keep your home protected from these pesky pests.

Simple Precautions to Prevent Bed Bug Infestation

Following these simple precautions can help you prevent the infestation of bed bugs in your home:

– Closely inspect your beds, furniture, and couches for any sign of bed bug infestation.

– Use protective covering on your mattresses to eliminate any area that the bugs can use as hiding spots.

– Minimize clutter in your home so you can reduce hiding areas for bed bugs.

– Vacuum your home regularly in order to remove bedbugs.

– Be very careful when using any shared facilities in the laundry. Items that are intended for washing should be stored in plastic bags when transporting them to washing facilities. After removing the items from the dryer, place them immediately in your plastic bag.

– Purchase a portable heating chamber that you can use in treating any items in your home that may have been infested with bedbugs. But before you use any of these heating chambers, read the directions carefully and find out if they are safe to use.

Integrated Pest Management

Controlling the spread of bed bugs in your home requires a lot of time and utmost patience. Naturally, bed bugs tend to reproduce very quickly. Furthermore, their eggs are highly resistant to several methods of pest control Scottsdale, whether they are chemical or non-chemical methods. One of the most effective techniques when it comes to controlling bed bug infestations is the application of Integrated Pest Management System.

Also known as IPM, the Integrated Pest Management system is an effective method of pest management, but in a more eco-friendly way. The program considers the life cycle of the bed bugs as well as their environment to control their presence.

By understanding the behavior of the pests and applying some effective pest control methods, the pests can be removed in the fastest time possible and with fewer hazards to the environment.

Using Pesticides to Control Bed Bugs

The EPA has recognized more than 300 different products that can be used to control the infestation of bed bugs in your home. Most of these products are safe to use by consumers who prefer a DIY approach in controlling the pests. However, there are some products that are only approved for use by specially trained Scottsdale pest control professionals. Before approving the products, the EPA evaluates them based on their effectiveness and safety.

Although there are various means of controlling bed bug infestations on your own, it’s highly recommended that you leave the job to specially trained pest control professionals.

Glamour Ahead: Get In on the 2013 San Francisco Decorator Showcase

A fiery orange tepee and an electric classic sign light up a playroom, a living plant wall curtains over a freestanding tub and 60-year-old Monterey pines grow in a stylish living room. This house of wonders is not your ordinary homeowner’s house — it is the 2013 San Francisco Decorator Showcase in an 8,000-square-foot Georgian mansion at San Francisco’s Pacific Heights neighborhood.

This year’s showcase highlights the talents of 27 designers in 24 individual display spaces. The chambers show off the designers’ abilities, pushing the limits and displaying their creativity. A gorgeous penthouse spa, a candy chocolatier’s lab and a tiny writer’s retreat are just a couple more things you’ll find behind this historical mansion’s doors. Here are a few of our favourite spaces from this year’s San Francisco Decorator Showcase.

2013 San Francisco Decorator Showcase
Dates: April 27 to May 27
Hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Friday, 10 a.m. to seven p.m.; Sunday and Memorial Day, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Tickets: $30 general admission; $25 for seniors; available at the door or Internet
More information

Playroom: “Danger Zone”
Designer: Martha Angus and Eche Martinez

Taking to heart the thought that each kid is a artist, Martha Angus and Eche Martinez turned among the home’s living rooms into an incredible playroom filled with fun and colour at each turn. A glowing orange baby alpaca tepee, foam-filled furniture out of Art Basel, a vintage sign above the fireplace and light fixtures made out of Kid Robot toys are lively elements that could work only in a bold room similar to this. Windows that had an unfortunate opinion were covered up with stick-on displays. A box filled with fake dynamite adds one final over-the-top twist.

Faux bois painting: Katherine Jacobus; window treatments: inkjet print on vinyl, Quick Signs; sconces: custom, Martha Angus and Eche Martinez, Urban Electric; chairs, stools: Maarten de Ceulaer, Industry Gallery; artwork above fireplace: Charles James Gallery

Living Room
Designer: Heather Hilliard

The first oak paneling and herringbone flooring help warm up Heather Hilliard’s bold black and white design for this dining room. A hand-rolled porcelain chandelier catches the eye and provides a gentle touch to the area’s picture lines. Cardboard sculptures by Ann Weber complement Hilliard’s custom treatment on the walls above the pine panels.

Pendant: Bocci; seat fabric: Christian Fischbacher; lamp: Habité LA; seat fabric: Holland & Sherry; andirons: Tuell + Reynolds; sconces: Soane Britain; chairs, table, console: custom

Master Toilet: “A Sacred Space to Bathe”
Designer: Síol Studios

A living wall at the home bathroom — which Kevin Hackett and Jessica Weigley designed as a “healing wall” — retains a lush range of blossoms, geraniums and mosses. A watering system trickles down the wall to maintain the fragrant bursts of lavender and mint fresh.

Family Kitchen
Designer: Alison Davin, Jute Style

The house used for this year’s display was built from the early 19th century, so the kitchen is tucked to the back and beneath each of the principal rooms. Since this isn’t how folks live today, designer Alison Davin aimed to create a space that a family would love to assemble in. Beams, herringbone floors, a fireplace and other architectural elements make this kitchen feel like a comfy and natural expansion of another living spaces. Dark navy cabinets offer unexpected contrast to the beech counter tops. Terra-cotta tile in Ann Sacks adds a more contemporary element on the counter tops.

Wall paint: White Dove, Benjamin Moore; trim paint: Simply White, Benjamin Moore; cabinetry paint: Midnight Blue, Benjamin Moore; window treatments: Osborne & Little; sconces: Urban Electric; pendants: Remains; tile: Ann Sacks; artwork: Serena Bocchino

Designer: Matthew Leverone

Potted 60-year-old Monterey pines create a dramatic statement in this otherwise calm and gathered space. Layers of textures in the velvet sofa, hand-knotted Moroccan rug, silk cushions and leather seat make the glowing space feel soft and warm. The Monterey pines, planted in cement planters, make the space feel a part of this garden just outside.

Sconce: Jonathan Browning; all of furniture: custom designed by Leverone Design; rug: vintage

Living Room
Designer: Catherine Kwong

The striking floor at the home’s main living room — inspired by Cy Twombly’s iconic function — sets the scene for this easy and elegant space. Stancil Studios covered the ground in a rich navy with bold, sporadic white brushstrokes topped with a transparent varnish. Designer Catherine Kwong kept the rest of the room cool and easy to draw attention to the ground. The first ceiling keeps architectural interest, while the slightly feminine but contemporary furniture adds to the area’s understated advantage.

Fringe lights: vintage, Mario YagI; black and white photograph: Henry Leutwyler; window treatments: Georgina Rice; paint: Pratt & Lambert

Writer’s Retreat
Designer: Kriste Michelini

Working together with the complex slanted ceiling inside this area was not simple, but by having a white foundation for her colour palette, designer Kriste Michelini made extra visual space. White grass cloth walls by Phillip Jeffries and a whitewashed floor blur the borders between the two surfaces and reflect the minimal all-natural light coming from the single window. The built-in platform bed with colorful customized cushions stands out from eclectic wallpaper from Elitis.

Pendant: Alabax, Schoolhouse Electric; skull: Ashley Tudor; wallpaper: Brit Pop, Elitis; table lamp: Barbara Barry, Baker; runner: DwellStudio; cushions: custom and Caitlin Wilson; desk, seat: Ironies

Soaking Bath
Designers: Willem Racké and Emilie Munroe

Although designers Willem Racké and Emilie Munroe understood the mirrors covering the walls of the bathroom had to go, they didn’t want to deal with the mess and chaos that would include a demolition. So Racké painted large parts of canvas in his studio and had them applied to the mirrored walls, leaving a few select spots available for flashes of mirror. Munro worked together with local company Dogfork Lamp Arts to look the chandelier. From the hallway looking in, each light looks like a bubble floating in the atmosphere.

Chair: Coup d’Etat; accessories: Sue Fisher King; carpet: Flor

Teen Girl’s Room
Designer: Applegate Tran Interiors

Designer Gioi Tran made this room with a specific character in mind: an artistic teenage girl rebelling from a beauty-queen mother. The bold room carries an edgy approach to normal “princess” decor. A map of London on the ceiling inspires dreams of traveling, faux-finished walls add abstract colour and a customized mattress is wrapped with string.

Desk, nightstands, bed, dog bed, desk stool: Applegate Tran Furniture; couch chair, nightstand lamps: Coup d’Etat; headboard fabric: Elitis; mattress linens: Kearsley; accessories: Paxton Gate; decorative painting: Willem Racké; floor tiles: Armin Maier

Dressing Room
Designer: Shelley Cahan

Just within the teenage girl’s room (previous photograph), designer Shelley Cahan used a mix of vintage and contemporary elements to create a lively dressing room. Kravet geometric wallpaper came first, dictating the rest of the plan. A Sozo Studio custom closet system is covered in herringbone fabric with a laminate finish for additional visual texture. A vintage-inspired light from Arteriors pays tribute to the home’s authentic style.

Artwork: Lost Art Salon; seat, side table: Ironies

Maker’s Mark Retreat
Designer: Kelly Hohla, Jeffers Design Group

A mix of materials marks this room, designed as a joint study. Beginning with a custom wood credenza by New York artist Michael Coffey, designer Kelly Hohla used amazing Holland & Sherry fabrics and a gorgeous machine-cut hide wall by Kyle Bunting to add subtle texture. The area combines vintage and contemporary, and feminine and masculine, elements to create an inspirational workspace.

Wools, linens: Holland & Sherry; vintage chairs: Coup d’Etat; hide and hair wall: Kyle Bunting; credenza: Michael Coffey; lamps: Herve van der Straeten

Garden Courtyard: “Birds of Prey”
Designer: Davis Dalbok and Brandon Pruett, Living Green

Using artwork outdoors is surprising, but that’s often what makes a courtyard work. Davis Dalbok and Brandon Pruett of Living Green worked with Jane Richardson Mack to put six pieces of an antique Japanese screen in silver-leafed glass, shown here at the top right of this photograph. The images of Asian birds of prey on the displays helped create the frame for the rest of the garden.

There was minimal planting space in the courtyard, therefore Dalbok and Pruett used all of the vertical space they could. Each living wall explodes with conifers, maples, mosses, collectible Japanese maples and uncommon tiny baobab-type trees. Dyeing the gray concrete with a warmer terra-cotta colour made the patio feel more industrial and more natural.

Felted marble planter: Luciano Tempo; cement planter: Kimberlee Keswick; artwork installation: Jane Richardson-Mack; living walls system: Flora Felt; chairs: Michael Taylor

Master Living Room
Designer : Zoe Hsu

Before she had claimed her room from the showhouse, designer Zoe Hsu desired to use this gemsbok horn chandelier in her design. The piece includes a primitive look that complements the Schumacher snakeskin wallpaper in this sitting room. The space is created for someone to transition from getting ready in the morning at the vanity at the corner enjoying a glass of wine at nighttime in front of the fireplace.

Chandelier: Coup d’Etat; wallpaper: Schumacher; ottoman: custom; mirror, sconces: Ironies; fireplace rock: All Natural Stone

Master Bedroom
Designer: Philip Silver

Designer Philip Silver uses an Eastern philosophy in his interior designs; no major piece of furniture sits against a wall. Rather the mattress’s lavish headboard and a silver screen form a passageway in the spacious bedroom to the adjoining master bath. Holland & Sherry fabrics and plush Michaelian & Kohlberg rugs make for a soft and sumptuous sleeping area.

Bed linens: Frette; unwanted tables: Gary Hutton; dividers: Hartmann & Forbes; glass lamps: Jan Showers; mirror screen: Niermann Weeks; mattress suite: Ted Boerner

Designer: Antonio Martins

Designer Antonio Martins turned into this upstairs corner right to an elegant take on a guy cave. Martins watched the owner of the house for a lover and collector of antiques — especially old tools. A wall covered with old carpenter planes and boxes filled with classic tools only hint at the start of the collection. Fundamental materials help to maintain the upgraded man-cave vibe. The walls are upholstered with burlap, and the wood-framed floors are inlaid with metal tiles.

Woodwork: Fabian Fine Furniture; acacia bookshelf lamp: Fuse Lighting; seat: Phoenix, Johanna Spilman; burlap installment: Troy H Maher Wallcovering

Atelier Alcove
Designer: Jaimie Belew

Inspired by Alexander McQueen and the San Francisco ballet, designer Jaimie Belew created a magical drawing space to stoke imagination. Toning down ballet’s typical pink into a warm gleam, Belew custom designed a desk with acrylic drawer fronts and a bronze glass top. Luminescent trim adds an extra glow. Linen-upholstered walls (which also serve as built-in bulletin boards) and parquet marble floors add welcome all-natural touches.

Water Closet
Designer: Kelley Flynn

The design of the black and white fabric wall covering emulates the crown shape of this chandelier. Along with the upholstered walls, a wallpapered ceiling and a mosaic marble floor emanate restrained luxury in this powder room. A hand-forged table by Shawn Lovell Metalworks provides a fairly shelf in a small space.

Chandelier: Julie Neill; wall fabric: Fern Tree, Schumacher’s Kelly Wearstler collection; absolute window covering: Great Plains; wallpaper: Sloane Stripe, Ralph Lauren; floors: tile, Artistic Tile

Penthouse Retreat and Terrace
Designer: Karen Villanueva

Designer Karen Villanueva began her penthouse design together with the stunning city view as inspiration. Bringing in natural elements, soft palate grays and natural tones helped develop a calming region that’s ideal to a spa break. Two massage tables fit perfectly, but they can fold up easily to create room for yoga and meditation.

Guest Bathroom: “Elysium”
Designer: Alfredo Gregory

To create a toilet free of constraints, designer Alfredo Gregory removed as many walls as possible. The consequent open-concept area was created so that every item can get moist. Unlike paint, cement walls and a weathered plaster ceiling will not peel or fade with time. Encaustic cement floor tile out of Waterworks is crackproof. Gregory also custom designed a cement sink, a light fixture and a contemporary toilet to complete the room.

Chocolatier’s Laboratory
Designer: Stephanie Marsh Fillbrandt

This narrow space between the kitchen and the main hall was once a butler’s pantry, attached to the main dining room through a swinging door. Inspired by her family’s love of cooking and producing candies, designer Stephanie Marsh Fillbrandt created a chocolatier’s lab. Custom cantilevered glass shelving holds equipment for distilling syrups and sugars. Gray cabinetry and durable hardware contrast with the cool white Calacatta marble counter.

Shelves, window: Bonny Doon Art Glass; Granite: Brown Felicetta; fabric: Coraggio; hardware: EM Hundley; marble: IRG; Paint: Pratt & Lambert; carpet: Stark

The 2013 San Francisco Decorator Showcase runs April 27 to May 27. More information

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Artistry and Craftsmanship Create a Heartfelt Home

Pacific Coast and beautiful weather views enticed Robert and Phyllis Frank to select Cayucos, California, as the location for their new residence. But the house became something to respect by itself, as a result of its comprehensive design, honorable commissioned artwork collection — each piece a wedding anniversary present to each other for the last 40 years — and vibrant outside paint project.

in a Glance
Who lives here: Robert and Phyllis Frank, cats Jussi and Kiwi, and puppies Stella and Buddy
Location: Cayucos, California
Size: 1,844 square feet; two bedrooms, 2.5 baths

Sarah Greenman

The Franks exploited local architect John MacDonald to create their Craftsman-style house in Cayucos, a small beach community on Highway 1, just north of San Luis Obispo. They then took their time picking a color palette. They wanted colors that fit the house but also that fit. They picked traditional colors using a process created by Rob Schweitzer, director of research for the Arts & Crafts Society.

When the shade was finally on, Phyllis was shocked initially. “The house was glowing, standing apart from the other houses on the block. People began driving down the road and stopping before the house,” she states. “Happily, they were unanimous in their praise. If we sit to the front porch in the day this continues to occur. It took a week or so to get used to it, but it’s perfect.”

All paint colors by Sherwin-Williams. Base: Antique Gold; trimming: Golden Rule; accent: Olive Drab; window accent: Wineberry

Sarah Greenman

Two setbacks plagued premature construction. After razing the past, uninhabitable house, builder Jim Randeen of Nordic Builders discovered that the 5-foot-deep footing. Since county regulations demand that all dirt must be removed 1 foot below the lowest disturbance, this meant the Franks had to remove 6 feet of dirt off the entire lot, from property line to property line.

Then another county regulation stipulated that the property has to slope toward the road. But because the previous residence sloped to the trunk, the Franks had to raise the rear of the lot by 1 foot. That could have been fine, but the few then had to shore up the neighbor’s fences using a 10-foot concrete retaining wall. “Before we put one stick from the ground, we’d spent $100,000 on land preparation,” Phyllis says. “These challenges were beyond whatever we’d anticipated and sent us to the stratosphere, as you can imagine.”

Sarah Greenman

However, the Franks plowed forward. Creating the house sustainable and energy efficient was a must. They sourced many of the materials locally and installed solar panels. “We want to leave a small footprint on the environment and also lower the future expected rising costs of energy,” Phyllis says.

The Franks were also conscious to build a home they can live in for their remaining years by “producing all necessary living areas on the ground floor to ensure at the event mobility is a element in coming years, we would have the ability to stay in the home,” Phyllis says.

Sarah Greenman

The galley kitchen boasts soaring ceilings, a copper hood, ample storage and a farm-style sink. The artwork above the window was produced by Robert Burridge; it is one of the Franks’ many anniversary commissions.

Sarah Greenman

A skylight bathes the kitchen in natural lighting throughout the day. Sensors from the area dictate how much artificial lighting is required based on the time of the weather.

Since Phyllis loves to bake, she asked her architect to create butcher-block-topped storage drawers that could pull out to create additional work surfaces.

Countertops: natural Italian quartz

Sarah Greenman

The design and creation of the Franks’ home was a collaborative process. “Everything in the home is made by an artist, whether the paint selection, the woodwork, the artwork or the landscaping,” says Phyllis.

Cabinetmaker Charlie Kleeman, who built the Franks’ first home in Templeton, California, 30 years ago, crafted all the clear-grain Douglas fir cabinetry and interior trim around the windows and doors by hand.

“Our cabinets throughout the house were created, refined and perfected over months of meticulous and drawings dimensions,” Phyllis says. “Everything works and fits perfectly.”

Sarah Greenman

When the chocolate-colored curtains in the dining area are shut, the space takes on a stunning and romantic vibe.

For three years in a row, Laurie McKay produced a part of the abstract triptych on the wall for the Franks’ wedding anniversary.

Sarah Greenman

Phyllis has spent years singing in choral groups on the Central Coast, therefore songs is quite important to her. Speakers are hidden in each room of the house, and the homeowners can plug an iPod into any area.

Fireplace: Forden’s

Sarah Greenman

The Franks did not want a massive TV taking up room in their living space. “When I am not watching it, I don’t want to see it,” Robert says. They worked with Randeen to create a bank of narrow cabinets that hides the wellbeing TV.

Sarah Greenman

Among the Franks’ most distinctive pieces of artwork is at the hallway. An elephant called Wanalee, who lives in a sanctuary outside Lampang, Thailand, painted the bit.

Sarah Greenman

Lively patterns and bold coastal colors of aqua, cherry and coral brighten the master bedroom. Paso Robles, California, artist Liv Hansen created the silk painting above the bed.

Sarah Greenman

Phyllis shows her collection of jewelry at the master bathroom. Wavy textured tile adds a feeling of motion.

Artwork: Jo Wertz

Sarah Greenman

There are no light switches in the house. Rather, nifty control pads allow the Franks to dictate light use and temperature. When they leave the house, they struck “away,” and all the lights shut off. When they return, they struck “home” and the lights come on to the appropriate level. “This residence is much smarter than we are,” Phyllis says.

Lighting design: Procedure DSG

Sarah Greenman

With two dogs and 2 cats, one of that Phyllis describes as having “special needs,” this large pantry sink was necessary for bathing them. Tall cabinets keep pantry things out of sight, and a sky tube allows for natural light to permeate small space.

Sarah Greenman

The top floor has a second bedroom that doubles as a workspace. French doors lead to a deck with sea views.

A copper octopus called Otto, created by sculptor Ken Freygang of Paso Robles, sits on the deck.

Sarah Greenman

Neighborhood metalworker Alan Root crafted the copper and powder-coated stainless steel gates.

Sarah Greenman

“We had the idea, the criteria and the well-detailed design from the builder, and we trusted our builder and our chosen craftspeople to do their best,” says Phyllis, shown here on the porch with her dog, Buddy. “We wanted to live at a home that encompassed us with quality and beauty, a home that reflected pride and fine attention to detail, and we all think it worked!”

Show us your solar-powered home

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Outfit Top to Bottom, a Remodel

If you are planning to make changes to your whole house, while it’s all at once, or with time, it is worth it to come armed with a strategy to maintain the look consistent. In this series we’ll be rounding up thoughts and inspiration for updating fixtures, finishes and much more to create the look you desire. We’re starting with a bevvy of thoughts for a cottage-style remodel, so if a cheerful, new cabin is what you are thinking about, you have arrived at the right location.

Wettling Architects

Cottage cheer begins at the front gate, so that is where we’ll begin our quest of remodeling for cabin style. A classic white picket fence or very low rock wall and lush garden are cabin musts.

Ballard Designs

Charleston 1-Light Outdoor Lantern – $199

Try a pair of lantern-style sconces on the porch. Curvy lines and seeded glass give this wall lantern from Ballard Designs a vintage look that would be at home in any cabin.

Pottery Barn

Envelope Mailbox, Vintage Brass end – $49

This envelope mailbox is equally charming and functional — the ideal accent for a cabin porch.

Or try this: A rural mailbox on a place in the yard close to the picket fence would be a classic choice.


Woodpecker Knocker – $40

Finish off your entrance doorway using an enjoyable knocker, like this woodpecker knocker from Anthropologie. Not every home style can pull off a cute and unique detail like this, but in case you’ve got a cute cabin, go for it!

Or try this: Keep it classic with a conventional door knocker to add polish.

Kate Jackson Design

When buying cabin style, think fresh, cheerful and light. You can’t go wrong with classic cream or white paint, great wood floors and beadboard on walls or ceilings.

Pottery Barn

Hundi Handblown Glass 3-light Lantern, Bronze finish – $279

A beautiful yet easy glass pendant lighting like this one from Pottery Barn would function well in a cabin dining area. It’s large enough to make a statement, but the crystal clear glass means it won’t overwhelm.

Or try this: Utilize a woven or rattan pendant to add textural appeal.

Classic white beadboard wainscoting using a simple seat rail and base molding may give a room which quintessential cabin look.


Filmore Full Dummy Knob Set, Polished Brass – $93.77

Doorknobs could be small, but details like these can make all the difference. Stunning crystal knobs like this one would improve interior doors with vintage charm.

These cut-glass knobs from Lowe’s are a great budget-friendly choice, providing you with the expression of crystal in a much more reasonable price.

White porcelain knobs are another cabin classic. The budget conscious can search out ceramic knobs for a similar look.

Group 3

To get a charming cottage-style bath, choose fixtures and finishes with vintage flair. A pedestal sink, a claw-foot tub and classic subway tile are trendproof.

Restoration Hardware

Cartwright Inset Medicine Cabinet – $249

If your cabin bath is sporting fixtures from a different (tackier) decade, bring it back to its original glory with attractively simple pieces like this inset medicine cabinet from Restoration Hardware. It will look like it has been there forever.

Pottery Barn

Quinn Beaded Dual Sconce – $129

This dual sconce would seem subtly tasteful hung.

Vintage Tub & Bath

Lutezia 27-Inch Pedestal Lavatory Sink by Porcher

A pedestal sink is a can’t-miss classic for a cottage-style toilet. This one from Vintage Tub & Bath is especially handsome.

The Home Depot

Metro Hex Glossy White Porcelain Mosaic Floor and Wall Tile – $5.95

White hexagonal tiles are a timeless flooring alternative for a cabin bath. They seem right at home paired with subway tile or beadboard wainscoting.

Vintage Tub & Bath

72-Inch Classic Clawfoot Tub by Randolph Morris

If you’ve got the space, a classic claw-foot tub can become the star of this bathroom. If you are bargain hunting, try out a local salvage yard for a refurbished vintage tub rather than buying new.

Restoration Hardware

Century Ceramic Hooks – $14

It’s the details that count — hang a smart hook behind the door for stowing extra towels or robes along with course.

Kate Jackson Design

The kitchen is the heart and soul of a cottage-style house. Think sun streaming in through the windows, vintage-inspired light fixtures, cheerful and breezy colours, and unfussy surfaces. And obviously a tiny beadboard never hurts.

Erotas Building Corporation

Schoolhouse-inspired lighting, butcher block, wood floors and easy cabinetry, together with some open shelving, are crucial to the cabin kitchen.

Barn Light Electric Company

Sinclair Draftsman Porcelain Pendant – $175

Thanks to its shape and beautiful mint-green color, this porcelain pendant light from the Barn Light Electric Company would look great hanging over a breakfast corner or island.

Schoolhouse Electric

Wilamette 6 Pendant Light – $129

For a timeless schoolhouse look, you can’t beat these bracelets from Schoolhouse Electric.


Top Knobs M12 Dakota Cup Pull – $6.21

For cabinet hardware pick something easy and straightforward. I like the look and texture of these timeless bin pulls.


1 1/2-Inch Hexagonal Glass Knob, Nickel-Plated Bolt – $6

Accent kitchen drawers and cabinets with these petite knobsthat have the look of vintage milk glass.


Värde Countertop – $130

Ikea butcher block counters are inexpensive, warm, functional and perfectly suited to some cabin kitchen.


Rohl Handcrafted, Single-Basin, Fireclay, Apron-Front Farmhouse Kitchen Sink – $1,530

Splurge in an apron-front farmhouse sink from Rohl — it is that the classic and could become the centerpiece of your cabin kitchen. Pair it with a vintage-inspired gooseneck faucet.


Ceramic Basics Capriccio Tile, White Gloss

White subway tile makes a chic and inexpensive backsplash. This is such a common item, you should be able to find a great deal on it from a number of manufacturers in any given local building supply store.

Tyler Morris Woodworking

Shelf Brackets – $18

Cottage kitchens are usually on the smallish side. Open yours up by replacing a number of the upper cabinets with open shelving. Simple wooden mounts like these may be painted to match your wall color.


Ekby Tony/Ekby Stilig Wall Shelf – $36.99

These simple wall shelves from Ikea are a great, quick choice for adding storage into the kitchen.

Or try this: White Carrara marble shelves could make a luxurious addition to a cabin kitchen.

Jessica Helgerson Interior Design

Tell us Are you currently renovating a cabin? Have any resources to share? Join the conversation!

More: So Your Design is: Cottage

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9 Lights With Origami Allure

They’re sculptural, they’re tasteful and they’re beautiful. I’ve noticed these origami-inspired lights popping up around the place lately, and I think that they are here to remain. Like a number of the modern icons of the 20th century (think Nelson lights), they have a classic simplicity. And many of them are much, much easier on the wallet than conventional designer lighting.

Have a look at these 9 great examples.

FORMA Design

The Big Bang from Foscarini has that complex simplicity of a piece of origami.

I simply added this folded paper lamp from Serena & Lilly into my den. It has changed the whole atmosphere for the better.

Origami Paper Pendants Oval – $68

These simple, pleated lamps come in 3 distinct, modern contours.

Holly Marder

A bunch of origami cranes make a royal and spectacular light. It’s a piece of artwork lit from within.

CWB Architects

Another very simple barrel pendant with the texture of folds and pleats.

Emily Chalmers | Caravan Style Ltd..

Folds and the sharp creases in this metal world pendant give an feel to it.

Uribe Studio Inc..

A bunch of blossom lighting that are bright. I think that they may be porcelain, but I can’t tell. Does anyone recognize them?


Chestnut Paper Origami Lampshade by Studio Snowpuppe – EUR 89

I adore this matte gray folded light. It’s serious, elegant and affordable.


Jaycie Origami Lampshade, White, by Jaycieydesigns – $68

Modern and crisp.


Moth Origami Lampshade by Studio Snowpuppe – EUR 59

Perfect for a modern nursery. Or for almost any room in the house, for that matter.

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Tropical Modern Casitas Perch in the Nicaraguan Hills

After Austin, Texas, native Robert Dull visited Nicaragua for the first time in 1997, he fell in love with the state and pledged to return and buy property whenever possible. 2 years later he fulfilled his dream by buying 10 acres on a hillside 320 yards from Playa Gigante, a small farming and fishing village on the Pacific Coast.

Dull, a research fellow in environmental science at the University of Texas at Austin, has always had a fascination with and love of modern architecture. So in 2004 he formed CasaMod, a development firm based in Nicaragua, also got to work designing and constructing a housing community which sprawls around seven of his acres, with a resort and staff quarters containing the other 3.

As part of the housing community, he built two twin casitas (small houses), with the aim that one would function as his dwelling area when he visited and worked on research projects, along with the other as a rental property. He calls his job the Brio Project. Having worked closely with architect Javier Arana from Granada to create the blueprints as well as the electrical and structural plans, Dull now appreciates lush views of the Central American coastline from his new home away from your home.

at a Glance
Who lives here:
Robert Dull
Location: Playa Gigante, outside Rivas, Nicaragua
Size: Each casita is 750 square feet; Dull’s: 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom; rental: 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom
Cost: $60 per square foot; $45,000 each casita; the many range from about $25,000 to $65,000

Louise Lakier

The two casitas were constructed in 10 months. When seeing Nicaragua to operate on various environmental research jobs, Dull resides from the two-bedroom unit with all the blue window trim. Another unit is primarily a rental property.

The window trim consists of Covintec and is used as a mirrored material that transitions from the side metal paneling. The detail also provides shade and a dab of colour to the otherwise plain geometric forms.

Louise Lakier

A small kitchenette provides all the essentials Dull needs; vinyl left over from the swimming pool constitutes the backsplash and countertop.

A staircase with laurel timber treads leads up to the 2 bedrooms. Reinforced concrete block and stucco make up the lower-level structure, while a metal skeleton forms the top levels.

The project wasn’t without its challenges. “We had some major issues with subcontractor work and specifications being met,” says Dull. “The Galvalume siding was not a normal program, and we had to redesign it. We also had to rip out the top staircase once, since they cut into the kitchen headroom.”

Louise Lakier

Dull made the teak dining room furniture and also had a local carpenter construct it. A previous rental tenant created the wire sculptures and abandoned them as a present for Dull.

Louise Lakier

The casitas’ front porches look toward the Giant’s Foot stone formation in Playa Gigante.

Louise Lakier

The teak ceiling on the top floor proceeds outside to develop into the roof eaves. Large windows frame Giant’s Foot from the space.

Louise Lakier

Dull also designed the beds and bedside table at the guest bedroom, also had them assembled by a local carpenter. The upstairs bedrooms at the casitas feature stainless lights. “Some of the lights operate on solar energy, but others don’t. You only learn when the power goes out,” Dull says. Power outages are rather common during the windy season of December to February.

Smartly positioned windows offer privacy from the neighbors while still showing blue heavens.

Louise Lakier

Sky-blue tile covers the unit’s only bathroom. “It’s small, elegant, practical and contains hot water — a rare amenity here,” Dull says.

Dull bought the towel bars, hardware and fixtures from Ikea from the U.S. and slightly modified them to add local timber for shelving.

Louise Lakier

With teak and teak Galvalume for the siding, the design style is exactly what Dull calls tropical modern — a nod to architect Glenn Murcutt of Australia, that “has done much to pioneer tropical modernism in a way that recognizes and embraces the climate and atmosphere,” Dull says, adding Ian McHarg’s publication Design with Nature also inspired his layout.

Louise Lakier

The 2 units sit on top of a hill of drought-tolerant plants and xeriscaping, and miss a pool that is shared with the resort. Dull is still developing the property as new many are offered and homes constructed.

Louise Lakier

Dull kicks back poolside here in front of a deck along with a shade structure. He is now working on a new water system at the Brio development along with a similar casita because of his Austin, Texas, residence. “If you are building a home in a distant region of the planet, be patient and try to source locally,” he provides as guidance.

Louise Lakier

The resort closed in 2011 and is now rented as staff housing to other businesses in the area. “The truss joists increase the roof airplane for venting,” Dull claims of its own design. “I had been attempting to mimic the open minded effect of traditional bud palapas while giving it a transparent modern feel.”

And Dull practices what he’s preached. Having educated environmental sustainability at the college level for a long time, he included graywater, xeriscaping, solar energy and rainwater collection. The blossom roof is a way to collect water for the significant rainwater cisterns, which have a 20,000-gallon capacity.

See more photographs of this Undertaking

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Basement of the Week: Mediterranean Wine Cellar Style at Michigan

This homeowner wanted the walk down into her condo’s basement to shoot her away — all the way to Europe. “The owner wished to create a comfy Mediterranean wine cellar appearance,” states Lisa Whelan of M.J. Whelan Construction. A string of elliptical archways different the spaces, and hot neutrals, tiles which resemble tumbled stone and Venetian plaster wall treatments give old-world style. Once a yucky concrete wasteland, the cellar is now a favorite spot for cozying up and entertaining.

Basement at a Glance
Who lives here: An interior designer
Location: Milford, Michigan
Size: Around 1,500 square feet
Maximum cost: $67,000

M.J. Whelan Construction

The homeowner is an interior designer, so that she had a good deal of the materials and finishes picked out before construction began. A ceramic tile flooring with a stone appearance, a French state–style dining table and chairs, along with a chandelier fashioned from green wine bottles increase the Southern European wine cellar look.

Chandelier: Pottery Barn

Before Photo

This cellar was a typical raw cellar space.

M.J. Whelan Construction

“The company has buddies over regularly such as cards, wine tastings and Bunko,” Whelan says. A bar with comfy bar stools between the dining area and kitchen provides a good perch for tastings.

M.J. Whelan Construction

There were two ugly egress windows in the cellar, so the group came up with a unique solution, which you may see on the wall on the left. “We created custom woodwork around them to make them look like double hutches and added stained glass windows, which the customer custom designed herself,” says Whelan. The natural light from the egress windows is enhanced by lights set behind them.

M.J. Whelan Construction

The space includes a kitchen. The top cupboards have LED lights indoors to highlight the glassware. Ceramic tile on the walls includes a tumbled-stone, Tuscan appearance.

Countertops: Corian

M.J. Whelan Construction

Elliptical archways increase the Mediterranean wine cellar appearance, create separate intimate areas and leave the general distance feeling spacious and large. In the press room, comfy overstuffed sofas confront the TV and fireplace.

M.J. Whelan Construction

The fireplace surround is limestone. Custom built-ins on each side offer space for media gear, books and display items. The once-unfinished underground distance now provides a comfortable haven for entertaining, wine tastings, games, meals and movie nights.

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Fantastic Design Plant: Western Bleeding Heart

There’s something magical about taking a woodland walk, particularly in spring. It is the time to rediscover the indigenous paintings of our landscape.

Late March finds Western strain heart pushing up through the leaf litter in my woodland, increasing in amount each year even though our rambunctious dog scampering over them. The plants form a rug of soft fern-like foliage wherever dappled light emitting the canopy; they thrive in the fertile, moisture-retentive land of the forest ground. Even with no delicate pink flowers, these perennials would be worthy of inclusion in a shady garden.

Don’t be deceived by looks, by the way — these are much tougher than they look.

Botanical name: Dicentra formosa
Common names: Western Illness heart, Pacific bleeding heart
USDA zones: 4 to 8 (find your zone)
Origin: Native to moist woodlands of the Pacific Northwest, from British Columbia to California
Water condition: Prefers moist, fertile soil but is surprisingly drought tolerant in summertime
Light requirement: Dappled light; morning sun with afternoon shade
Mature size: 12 inches tall and wide (though it will disperse)
Benefits and tolerances: Hummingbirds enjoy it deer leave it alone (two great reasons to include it in your garden).
Seasonal interest: Flowers in late spring
When to plant: As the foliage begins to go dormant in late summer or when new shoots Start to appear in early spring

Photo by Walter Siegmund

Distinguishing traits. Delicate blue-green ferny leaves creates a soft carpet beneath the arching stems of dusky-pink heart-shaped flowers.

Despite appearances, this indigenous bleeding heart is demanding.

Photo by Walter Siegmund

Photo by Walter Siegmund

Le jardinet

The best way to use it. Western bleeding heartis ideal for the dappled shade of a woodland garden, possibly clustered around the base of a mossy tree stump or boulder. Or plant it en masse to form a ground cover.

This spring perennial also appears right at home along shady stream banks, providing the soil doesn’t become saturated.

Planting notes. Western bleeding heart spreads readily by rhizomes and seeds, so you can set plants some space apart and quickly become good coverage. To propagate, divide the plants in early spring as the shoots emerge but before flowering.

Le jardinet

Ornamental species and cultivars. The most popular of them is Dicentra spectabilis, shown here. It is a larger perennial, growing to 3 feet by 3 feet, and its flowers are a bright pink.

There’s also a white-flowered cultivar (D. spectabilis ‘Alba’) and a golden-leaved one with pink flowers called ‘Gold Heart’ (D. spectabilis ‘Gold Heart’).

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Taste a Rainbow: 11 Top Home Decorating Colors and How to Use Them

Color might be loved by you. Beige may be the most used color in your flat, or even a stack of gray paint chips could make you cringe. However you feel about color, there are infinite ways to utilize it to make over a space, create a mood and solve design dilemmas.

Whether you like to go neutral or neon, ‘ guides to color are you covered to the spring painting period.

Sarah Greenman

Gray. It was touted as a fad at first, but the love for gray has yet to fade. Play dark charcoal for dramatic dining rooms and utilize foggy gray for relaxing bedrooms filled with natural light.

More: guides to decorating with gray

Dillard Pierce Design Associates

Red. Go beyond the classic red front door and bring this bold shade indoors. Make an impact with an incredible accent wall or keep things simple with a couple striped pillows.

More: guides to decorating with red

CWB Architects

Pink. Although it’s a favourite choice for little girls’ rooms, pink may feel grown up and sophisticated. This cheerful hue can brighten rooms of several styles.

More: guides to decorating with pink

Maria Killam

Orange. An often-forgotten color, orange can immediately warm up a space in the subtlest accents. From tangerine to coral, a shade of orange can work in your home.

More: guides to decorating with orange

Heather Knight

Yellow. Yellow is just one of these colors that immediately makes people content. Accent it with glowing blues for a palette that plays off the color wheel, or tone it down by pairing it with neutral and gray textiles.

More: guides to decorating with yellow

Elizabeth Dinkel

Green. Bring the outdoors inside with nature’s favourite color. Lively, refreshing and eye catching, the right tone of green may work in almost any home.

More: guides to decorating with green

Product Bureau LLC

Blue. Vibrant and striking in some spaces, subdued and soothing in others, blue may completely transform an area.

More: guides to decorating with gloomy

Mercedes Corbell Design + Architecture

Purple. Purple isn’t necessarily the first selection for interior decorating — out of children’s spaces — however if used smartly and sparingly, it may add an elegant element of surprise into modern or traditional spaces.

More: guides to decorating with purple

Joie Wilson

White. Sometimes sticking to the basics is your best option. Don’t dismiss white as boring — when used right, it can make an incredible statement.

More: guides to decorating with white

Mark Newman Design

Brown. Though beige tends to have a bad rap, there’s a reason this color is so popular: It’s hard to get wrong. Use a lighter shade for more soothing spaces and venture into dark chocolate browns to mix things up.

More: guides to decorating with brownish

Design Line Construction, Inc..

Black. Black doesn’t need to be used sparingly. Although it’s dark, it may often be utilised in the same way as a neutral but with a dramatic flair.

More: guides to decorating with black | Research all the color guides

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Make a Sweetheart: 13 Ways to Romanticize Your Home

Allow the romantic spirit infuse your home with grace, style and sweetness. Show a treasured photo, pick up a lost art or attempt a DIY job — if you want to romance someone special or reveal yourself a little additional love, these 13 thoughts are great ways to get started.


1. Make a statement with flowering branches. In the event that you usually choose blossoms, try something different and reach for the most luscious-looking armful of flowering branches you can find — by a flower shop or, if you are really lucky, clipped from the lawn. It will make a stunning display and last a long time.

Kate Riley – Centsational Girl

2. Frame a photo. Dig out your wedding photos or people out of your parents’ or grandparents’ wedding and also have one framed. Or select a favorite digital photo and convert it into black and white to get artsy, classic flair.

Kristin Peake Interiors, LLC

3. Create DIY art. Have amazing handwriting? Pick up a prepared canvas and supplies at your local art shop, and get painting! An easy repeated phrase, such as the “I adore you” shown here, would function nicely as a DIY job. Be sure to compose the text in pencil, then paint over it to prevent mistakes — or use letter stencils instead.

Charmean Neithart Interiors

4. Bring home a classical bust. Search local shops or internet resources like 1stdibs and also the Products section for a piece of sculpture which occupies your heart. While authentic antiques are rather pricey, you can find quality reproductions or even midcentury classic busts at lower prices.

Jessica Lagrange Interiors

5. Take up the lost art of correspondence. Produce a writing haven for yourself, stocked with lovely stories and envelopes, your favourite pens, stamps and an address book. Write love notes, “bread and butter” thank-yous or longer letters to older relatives who may not be using email. I can not think of anyone who is not delighted to get a handwritten note in the mail!

Jute Interior Design

6. Romance your bath. Don’t wait for visitors to drop in to liven up your bathroom. A pretty hand towel, a posy of flowers and a scented candle will please you every time you walk.

Palmerston Design Consultants

7. Start looking for a brand new spin on heart art. Warm up a modern space using a nonfussy yet romantic print. A tendency to watch for now is photography overlaid with semitransparent graphic art, such as the artwork shown here.

Tim Barber Ltd Architecture

8. Put flowers in sudden places. Rather than the usual huge vase of flowers on the dining table or in the living space, consider creating a bunch of minibouquets to disperse throughout your home. Place them beside your bed, on the kitchen counter, in the restroom, tucked into a bookshelf or on a windowsill.

Lux Decor

9. Hang up a sign. A petite chalkboard or zinc signal is the perfect place to write small notes which will cheer up all who pass.

Jane Lockhart Interior Design

10. Have breakfast (or at least java) in bed ). If breakfast in bed sounds unrealistic, place yourself up for success by planning to get coffee in bed rather. Establish a tray the night before along with your favourite coffee cup, a napkin and a bud vase. In the morning, bring the tray and a carafe of coffee and rush back to bed with the newspaper or a book.

Cottage Industry

11. Make the breakfast more special. In case you don’t usually bother to place the table at breakfast, consider giving it a shot. A cheery collection of quilted placemats, colorful dishes, a pot of jam and a jar of wildflowers will be heaven.

Branca, Inc..

12. Proceed with wallpaper. Papering your bedroom with a lush print will instantly make the room feel cozier yet somehow more spacious. Toile, such as the one shown here, or even a scene with branches and birds will provide the most depth to the space.

Kate Michels Landscape Design

13. Set a table for 2. Tuck a tiny table and 2 seats in a vacant place somewhere less expected — an underused portion of the backyard, from the window in your bedroom or tucked near the fireplace in the living room.

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