Dog-Proofing Your Home

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You love your furniture and you love your dog.  But sometimes these two don’t get along as there seems to be a magnetic attraction between them.  There are some things about some of your stuff that your dog simply finds irresistible.

But suffer not, for there is hope.  Your furniture and dog can both live in the same household, as long as your home is dog-proof and you leave your furniture away from them.

How To Dog-Proof Your House

Sometimes dogs can stay away from other stuff, like garbage, chewing your shoes or your bed. But more dangerously, it would be terrible if your dog were to chew on a box of Advils or on a live electric wire!  Not a good thing for you is your dog eating a stack of Benjamins, now is it?

The following are some tips to restore the peace between you and your pet.

  • Dogs may not be human but the same measures you take for a walking baby, you should do for a dog.  If you already have little children, you are already familiar with all the measures you should take to baby-proof your home.  Use the same objects for your dog:
    • Safety locks for cabinets and doors.
    • Containment system for your electrical cords.
    • Covers for electrical outlets.
    • Baby gates to limit access to certain rooms.
  • Close the doors to your rooms and bathrooms.  Simple, right?  Especially if you are going out, you do not want to come home to shredded paper or peed beds.
  • The most advisable thing to do when going out is to crate him inside.  But before this, you should crate train your pup in order to have him spontaneously go inside the crate.
  • Be a bit more organized, especially with stuff that you should actually put away.  If you find your Prada shoes chewed on it is your fault for leaving them at the reach of your dog.  So put away your underwear, your designer glasses and happy we all will be.
  • Buy a trash can that your dog cannot open.  Most dogs love to dig in trash cans for food.  But they are not in the job of cleaning after themselves.  Get yourself a dog-proof trash bin with a safety lid.

Your Furniture

We believe that the best way to protect your stuff is to keep them away from the reach of your dog.  With respect to your dog, there are some things you can do:

  • Teach your dog what are the things that he has access to.  For instance, train your dog to chew on the toys you give him only.  Gently reprimand him if you see him going after your shoes.  In this way, he will understand that there are some things that he cannot have access to.
  • Get yourself a dog that is known for being calm, easy, and with a good temper.  Labradoodles, for instance, are known to be pets that are easy to train and do well around the house.
  • Work on an area of the house assigned for the dog’s entertainment only.  Include chewing toys and other forms of entertainment for your pet.  This will be for him to vent out any chewing needs.
  • If you have a dog that likes to chew, he will probably aim at the legs of that cedar wood dining table.  Oh, it would be a shame if that one gets gnawed away.  You can spray a cleaner on the areas where your dog can reach.  This will keep him outside these areas.

Remember that it is your responsibility to keep things away from your pets.  They are animals after all which behave based on instincts.  Hitting or displaying harsh behavior towards them might actually send a wrong message and help perpetuate bad habits.


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Blinds or Curtains? What should you get for your home?

Remodeling your home is a pretty exciting journey.  The entire process is a ride of glee where you have to decide the color to give to each wall.  Where to place each piece of furniture, how to work the natural lighting, and what kind of blinds or curtains to use.

Today, we will be focusing on whether to install blinds or curtains.  First of all, if you are aiming for a true makeover, forget about what you had before.  If you had curtains, don’t set your mind to deciding what kind of curtains will you choose or if you had blinds, don’t think about substituting those.  Wipe off all pre-conceived ideas and read on.  We will give you some ideas to actually decide what will look best in your home.

Let’s begin by presenting the pros and cons of both.

Pros and Cons of Using Curtains

windows, blinds, drapes

Since ancient times, people have dealt with curtains.  Magnificent designs representing old days can be found and more modern designs as well.  So, when we think of curtains, we do not necessarily think of modern art.  Although, using curtains is not a whisper to the past altogether.


  • They allow more possibilities of design.  You can choose among a myriad of designs and colors.
  • During winter, curtains are more effective at keeping a room warm.  In other words, curtains are more energy efficient.
  • Curtains can add instant style and coziness to a room.
  • When done well, curtains are aesthetically striking.
  • Effective at blocking light.  Of course, this will depend on the thickness and color of the curtains.
  • They are a much safer option for children and pets since they do not require a chord to pull.
  • To clean them, all you need to do is remove them and put them in the washing machine.


  • They take more space than blinds, making the room look smaller.
  • More expensive than blinds in general.  This will depend on what kind of curtains you are looking for.
  • Curtains tend to catch moisture and mold, especially in places with high moisture like the kitchen and the bathroom.
  • Dust and pet hair has a high tendency of sticking to curtains so they will require constant maintenance.
  • Depending on the type and size of the curtains, they can be harder to clean than blinds.

Pros and Cons of Using Blinds

Image result for blinds vs curtainsNow, with blinds, these tend to offer a more modern design.  You can say they are sleek and make a space look pristine.  There are many styles of blinds to choose from.  You get slatted blinds, vertical, Venetian, Roman, and rolling blinds.  If you have turned to these, then you still need to make a choice on what style to use.


  • Blinds have the characteristic of stacking up, either vertically or horizontally.  This ensures that they take less space than curtains.
  • Stacking or “picking up” blinds is a lot easier than doing the same with curtains to allow more light in.
  • They offer more control on the amount of light or heat and warmth to let out.
  • Roller blinds block out light with greater efficiency than curtains.  Not the same with verticals or Venetians.
  • Blinds are less expensive than curtains.
  • Depending on the design and size, they can be cleaned more easily.
  • Blinds are a great choice for small rooms or apartments.  Since they can be installed inside the recess of the window they do not take any room space.
  • They do not fade as they are made of non-fading material.
  • Since they are very easy to clean, they are popular in rooms with a lot of children.


  • Blinds installation can be tricky and doing it wrong can make them look crooked.
  • They can accumulate dust very quickly which means they might need constant cleaning.
  • In the case of vertical blinds, their design can allow a slit of light to enter through them.
  • They do not retain heat inside a room as efficiently as curtains do.
  • The slats they hang to can easily be broken if not treated properly or if an accident happens.
  • There are not really many options in design.  What does vary is the design and the material they are made of.
  • Cords can be dangerous for children and pets. However, blinds bring a special hook to install on the side for the user to tie in the excess cord to prevent these types of accidents.

The Choice is Yours

Now that we have seen the pros and cons of each one, you can make an educated decision of what goes best.  In the end, it will depend on what you prefer and what kind of look you want to imprint in a space.

For example, people would prefer to go with blinds for offices, bathrooms and kitchens.  These are places where sleek designs offers a more aesthetical look.  Living rooms and bedrooms are more into the cozy side, so people would usually prefer to install curtains there to match with the rest of the furniture perhaps.


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Design Ideas for Decorating your Home Office

If you are in the process of setting up a home office, then you are surely in the tedious process of finding what and how to get started with it. Working at home seems like a great idea, but setting up an office may not be easy. You need to make sure that you choose the right place and set it up in a way that you will still have that “office feel”.

For those who doesn’t have the skills and capability to do the home office setup, then that can be quite a challenge. However, don’t exhaust yourself too much, there are so many ways that you can decorate and setup your home office well and good.

Getting Started

Before you jump into the designing part, of course you need to know how to get started. And that is mainly about finding the right spot at home. You need to consider the location of the office and that is because of several factors such as proper lighting, ventilation, ambiance etc. You have to understand that in setting up an office, there would be a lot of cabling and electrical lines involved.

After finding the right spot at home. Then it’s time for you to plan out the design and how the office would look like. Where to put all the furniture, tables, the most comfortable office chair, printer, computers, etc. Meaning, you need to create a layout, considering the area and the things that you need within. A little bit of measuring and drawing will help.

The Design

Remember, you don’t need to be an interior designer in order to have well-designed home office. You can find some easy and perfect home office design ideas everywhere. For now, you have to start from the basics. For instance, adding to the entire look of your home office is to have an overlook window with a good view outside.

Also you have to know that the simpler, the better. Although there’ll be no such thing as overkill when it comes to designing, too much stuff inside an office is no-no especially if you have limited space at home. Keep your design simple yet elegant. Colours should also be complementing well with each other. Don’t overdo it.

A good storage is also vital to your home office. You can keep some of your stuff inside a box, a drawer to remove them from scattering outside your desk. You can find some less expensive drawers and cabinets that looks elegant which may suit well inside your office. Or you can find some DIY storage box making if your artistic side works well.

When it comes to art and design, a cute wall paper will make a difference. Depending on your design preference, there’s a wall paper design that works for it. A single painting hanging on the wall also works pretty well. What about a colourful chair? That would do, as long as it complements well with the other furniture. But then again, all that will still boil down to what you like and which design suits your taste.


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How to Save Money While Decorating

Whether you have just rented your first apartment or just bought your dream home, decorating while fun, can be exhausting.  It’s fairly easy to get caught up in how things look, completely forgetting how much they cost.  How can you personalize your space without breaking the bank?  Here is how to save money while decorating your space the way you want.

Take advantage of local Facebook groups

You already know to scour Craigslist for a bargain, but Facebook has all kinds of buy and sell groups near you.  You can also use it to find yard sales in your city.  It’s not much different from Craigslist in terms of people listing stuff for sale, but with Facebook profiles being visible it makes it just a little more reliable.  You can see who you’re buying from and you never know you might mutual friends.

Estate Sales and Thrift Stores

This is going to take some work on your part.  You can find pieces that are unique and have a lot of character but remember their inventory constantly changes so drop by often and if you see a bargain grab it!  There’s a good chance it will be gone tomorrow.  Here are some tips for finding great deals.

Big Box Stores

We all cringe at the idea of trying to assemble IKEA furniture and you may not want to decorate your home the same way you did your college dorm.  But…IKEA has plenty of decorative knick knacks and art pieces at a reasonable price.  You won’t even have to assemble anything.  Homegoods is another great place to pick up cool stuff, and it is fairly inexpensive.  Again it has a constantly changing inventory so drop by often.

Don’t Forget Friends

Every time someone moves chances are they are getting rid of some of their stuff and do a little shopping for the new place.  Your friends and family do that too.  Let them know what type of pieces that you’re looking for and ask them to keep an eye out.  You never know when someone might stumble across the perfect end table or area rug.

Be Patient Grasshopper

You’re new place won’t come together overnight, it’s going to take some time and patience to get exactly the look and feel you want.  Start by making your home feel warm and inviting.  Gradually you will find all the pieces you need to tie everything together perfectly.


Home Staging for Maximum Selling Price

A properly staged home can maximize your selling price and minimize time on the market by standing apart from the competition. You’ll want to properly staging your house to sell quickly. Potential home buyers need to see your home as a place where they could live. Home staging facilitates this by creating a mood in which the buyer can envision living in your space by removing clutter, dirt and over-personalization. Professional home stagers and interior designers live by the motto of de-clutter, de-personalize and clean, clean, clean! So how do you stage a home for maximum selling price? Follow this tips below.

Step 1: De-clutter

We never seem to realize how much we have accumulated until it is time to move. The good news about de-cluttering your home is that you can begin to sort through what you truly need and want to move to your new location. The bad news is that you have to be the one to sort through it! People that are buying a home are typically looking for more space. Clutter eats space and can make rooms feel cramped and small. Remove excess furniture, knick knacks and items that are not being used. Remember to ensure that the cupboards and closets only house the essentials. Sort everything into three piles, garbage, good will or garage sale, and those items to be packed and stored ready for the move into your new home.

Step 2: De-Personalize

This part of prepping your home for sale can turn into a special trip down memory lane. All those pictures and memorabilia are always in view, but people seldom take time to reconnect with their meaning. This is one of life’s opportunities to smell the roses, so go ahead, and take a few moments to enjoy! But make sure in the end that you do pack your personal mementos, family pictures and miscellaneous memorabilia. Generally, it’s an excellent rule of thumb to pack religious items, knick knacks, and small to medium pictures and items. Larger accessories and art work should be placed to one side for consideration when the home is later staged. Remember that you are showcasing your home as a canvas to which the buyer can insert their own style.

Step 3: Clean, Clean, Clean

Unfortunately for most home sellers, cleanliness is a major factor for buyers since other people’s dirt registers much higher on their ick radar. There’s really no way around it, to sell your home quicker and for the best possible price, it needs to sparkle. Buyers will pay special attention to the kitchen, bathrooms and windows. The following guidelines are recommended to get your home thoroughly clean.

  • Start at the top of your home and work down
  • Clean bedrooms, studies, and seldom used rooms first, the bathrooms, kitchen and utility rooms next. Save the porch, garage, shed, and attic for last.
  • Pull all furniture and appliances into the middle of the rooms that you can clean behind and underneath
  • Clean each room starting at the top and working down (ceiling, walls, trim and floor)
  • Do the wet work first – Washing paintwork, windows, laundering and shampooing
  • Do the dry work next – dusting, polishing, waxing
  • Save the vacuuming until last – this step removes all traces of dust and debris

Once your home has been thoroughly cleaned, set a cleaning schedule that will allow you to maintain the look on an ongoing basis. It’s not just the inside that needs help! Make sure you get some landscape design Vancouver done, so that your house looks good, inside and out.