About emmabjoyce

Emma B. Joyce is blogger based in Australia. She is a true home decor and DIY fanatic. Emma is interested in music and also is a big reading enthusiast. Finding new designs and patterns is her daily task. She got hooked on home accessories and decorations during her traveling and now cannot stop searching for new inspiration.

Backyard Renovations That Will Increase Your Home Value

For most people, backyard is just a lawn or perhaps a patio area, and they don’t usually want to change that. Still, what if you could renovate your backyard and add things which will not only be great for you and your family, but which would increase the value of your home at the same time? By adding certain things to your backyard, you can make it more comfortable and more personal, and you can turn it into a peaceful oasis for both colder and warmer days.

Plant trees

Trees are great – they add colour, privacy, and much-needed shade to your backyard, and they will also add value to it as well. Pretty much everything else loses value over time, but trees grow bigger, stronger, and more valuable. The best trees to plant are the young ones because they will adapt better, and when you sell your home they will add a touch of nature to it. While your first instinct may be to plant fruit trees, such as apples or pears, think about the smell of rotting coming from the fruit which you won’t be able to pick up and instead opt for something simpler, such as magnolia or oak tree.

Landscape lighting

Thoughtful landscape lighting is a treat for the eyes and it keeps you safe at the same time. People who drive by your home will slow down to admire your backyard because you will create something unique and lovely. When using path lights, feel free to mix different styles and sizes to avoid a monotonous, uniformed look. Every now and then, clean the lamps with damp cloth and dish soap, and make sure the bulbs aren’t burnt out. Your plants will continue to grow, and if you notice your flowers blocking the light output, simply relocate the lamp. Landscape lighting will show off your garden at night, keep you safe when you walk through the yard in the dark, and it will also keep burglars away.

Water, water, water

One of the easiest ways to make a sanctuary out of your backyard is to add the sound of running water to it. Whether it’s a simple little fountain, a small pond where you can keep koi fish, or a hot tub, having water-filled areas in your backyard will increase the value of your home. All you need is a comfortable place to sit down and relax while you listen to the sound of humming water, and you’ll feel the relieved from any kind of stress. The best thing is that you can make your fountain from scratch: all you need is a terracotta pot and a simple recirculating pump from the hardware store and voila – you will have your own DIY fountain.

Make it greener

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could make your backyard greener? Concrete patio is a bad idea because it will create a parking-lot type of yard and rain will only make puddles. By installing grass pavers, you will ensure that green grass neatly covers the driveway and this will keep your front lawns designed to a T. Not to mention that you won’t ruin your lawn when you park your car out front. This is a great solution for areas with heavy rainfalls – they allow the drainage of rainwater back into the underground soil instead of directing it in the waterways.

Fire pit

Fire pits are something you will not be able to use every day, so people tend to avoid installing them. Still, fire pits (or fireplaces) are a touch of luxury people like to have in their backyards. Climate is changing, and cold days are getting even colder, so adding a fire pit will be a nice touch to any backyard for practical reasons, as well. It also makes barbeque days much more enjoyable, and it’s great for small fires, so you can roast marshmallows there and make your outdoor time memorable. There are simple, transportable pits available, but you can also choose to install a real fireplace (although it will cost you more).

Backyard landscaping can seem like a big project, and people don’t do it because they fear the costs would be too high. You can give your backyard a nice makeover with some simple landscaping ideas and you can end up with a yard of your dreams. If you’re not afraid of working hard and if you like the idea of having a whole new backyard, roll up your sleeves and give it a go.

Smart Ways to Make More Space in a Small Kitchen

Who wouldn’t like to have a spacious and comfortable home? That would mean a huge tub or a walk-in shower, great dining room table, and a kitchen big enough for all your dreams. It is, however, virtually impossible to find an apartment with a spacious kitchen. Does that mean that you should give up on your dreams? Absolutely not! We offer you several easy, useful tips which will help you create more space in your small kitchen ‘out of thin air’.

Extra space in cabinets

You never have enough space in your cabinets, no matter how many of them you’ve got. One of the things you can do to fully utilize the storage capacity of your cabinets is use stackable shelves for your plates. Also, undershelf baskets are great because you can put bigger items such as jars or bottles in them. The space above your cabinets should not be wasted either, and you can place baskets here as well to hide other stuff. If baskets are not an option, you can mount a small additional shelf above your cabinets to place empty jars, and the things you don’t use often. Also, mount a file holder on the inside of the door and use it to stash trash bags, foil, and saran wraps.

Use vertical space

If your kitchen is small, you can work ‘small miracles’ in the cabinets, but the space will be limited nonetheless. This is why you can think outside the box and use your vertical space. Larger kitchen utensils can easily be hanged on pierced corbels, if you want to avoid making a mess in your drawers. You can even add small ladders to your kitchen so you can reach even higher. Opt for a simple sliding ladder which will allow you to reach ceiling-height cabinets where you usually keep blenders, bread-maker and other things you don’t use every day. For finishing touches, choose some decorative wall clocks, some nice pictures or inspirational quotes. 

Bar and counter stools

Another great space saver is bar and counter stools. Instead of using your kitchen solely for cooking, and choosing to eat on the couch or in the living room, you can eat on your kitchen counters sitting on bar stools. You can also choose to bring in brightly coloured stools which will add texture to the space. If you don’t have enough space for seating, you can try to create some by making a small, makeshift counter which will separate your living room from your kitchen area, which you can use as a dining table.

Pull-Out pantry

No matter how tiny your kitchen actually is, you will always have some small, unused spaces. A good example of such a space is the gap between the fridge and wall. Use this space to create a pull-out faux pantry where you can keep dry goods, cans, and jars. You can also make two cabinets which can slide out above the countertop, and you will not have a problem to find anything you need. Also, try placing trash cans and bins for recyclables below the sink, so you can pull them out when you need them.

On display

Cabinets are filled, pantry is full, counter space is too precious to be wasted, and drawers are well organized. Is there any other space to use? Your walls can be used and turned into a great storage space too. You won’t create an unnecessary mess on your work area if you just use hooks and shelves to hang pots, pans, and cups. Making a wall rack for your platters is incredibly easy and it will serve more than one purpose: you will get extra storage space, and get some new, great wall art.

Your tiny cooking area doesn’t have to be a nightmare anymore. You won’t feel like your kitchen is bursting at the seams anymore if you improvise a bit, and come up with some innovative solutions. Small spaces are a bit more difficult to organize, but you can create a beautiful kitchen if you maximize your storage space.

The Greatest Timeless Decorating Trends Around the Globe

When you’re thinking about redecorating your house or your apartment, where do you find inspiration? Various magazines, blogs and websites of interior designers, and Pinterest are probably the source of inspiration to many, and for a good reason. You want to choose the pieces and styles which will always be fashionable and elegant, and that is often hard to find. Different cultures consider different things to be beautiful, so we bring you a brief list of timeless decorating trends from all over the world.

India’s endless love of craft

Everywhere you look you can see lovely pieces which were designed with a lot of care and love, but made in some factory. In India, designers and homeowners work together to bring back the art of craft. In a great number of homes you can see different things that were handcrafted and picked with a lot of love: from simple bed linens and towels all the way to coffee tables and statues. These things aren’t always cheap, and this is the number one reason why they have been forgotten in the first place. Nevertheless, if you decide to buy a handmade piece, you can be sure that it will last for decades and never go out of style.

Russia’s fascination with antiques

It seems like everyone is sentimental about the past in Russia: in every apartment, there are vintage pieces that testify to the grandeur of past times. From decorative satin blankets embroidered with gold, to intricate porcelain figurines on shelves, the Russians are in love with the glamour and riches of the past, which they freely mix with modern pieces. Minimalist glass tables share the same room with crystal chandeliers, and modern, industrial-style lamps proudly stand on antique coffee tables surrounded by elegant floor rugs.

Cheerful and sophisticated Spain

Spanish-style décor is always vibrant but at the same time elegant and sophisticated. Spanish floors are always in focus and rarely covered with rugs or carpets. They are usually made of stone or wood and have a lovely texture design which would be a real shame to conceal. They also like to use intricate decorative tiles which allow them to decorate their stairs, kitchens, and fireplaces without actually cluttering the space with figurines or vases.

Japan’s legendary minimalism

If you could pick a single word to describe Japan’s home decorating style, it would be ‘zen’. Japanese believe that simplicity brings peace, and this is one of the reasons why they always choose clean and uncluttered living spaces. They love to bring in the elements of nature, and if you’re hoping to do the same, try bringing in more plants into the room. They don’t have to be big leafy plants, nor do they necessarily have to be real bonsai trees. A simple bamboo will do the trick, along with a small orchid or a succulent in a brass pot that will look great on your coffee table. Make sure your plants have plenty of natural light; choose light, flowy curtains which soften the sunlight and not necessarily block it. This will also make the space similar to traditional Japanese homes, since they have large windows which allow them an unrestricted view of their natural environment.

From India, across Africa, all the way to Japan and the USA, trends change and differ, but that doesn’t make them any less beautiful. The delicate mixture of old and new, minimalism combined with the love of intricate details, and neoclassical elegance all have their own beauty, and it’s up to you to get the best out of each style and bring it into your home. Never follow current trends blindly because those trends often change while by picking different things from different trends you can create a unique style that has staying power.

How To Bring New Design Into Your Home

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Are you tired of your same old home? Do you wish you could change it just a bit (or a lot) and make it exciting and fresh? It’s not a new thing – after a while, people get bored of the same old furniture, same old walls, and same old carpets, and they start thinking about making a change. If you’re feeling restless and want to change something about your home, we offer you a few solutions which might help you make a decision.

Are you ready to change?

Before you call in decorators and declare war on your old wallpapers, you should ask yourself what is it that you actually want to change in your home? Are little things driving you mad or you’re looking to make the space more functional? There are two ways for you to change your home: use little things to spice up and refresh your living space, or do a big renovation that can actually increase the market value of your home. So, before you start changing anything, ask yourself how big of a change are you thinking about and try to see how much time and money you are willing to spend on this little project? Since most people don’t really have the money to renovate every time a new trend appears, little changes can be enough to completely transform your living space.

Out with the old, in with the new furniture

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One of the easiest ways to brighten up your home is to change your furniture. If you can’t actually afford entire living room furniture sets, there are easy and cheap ways to repurpose your old furniture and give it new life. These useful mini makeovers can turn trash into treasure with a little bit of paint and a pinch of creativity, and the results will astonish you. Paint the drawers on your old desk ‘ombre’ to make it look brand new, and apply a fresh coat of paint and a bit of wrapping paper to transform your old bar cart into a little work of art. You can also buy a trendy new piece of furniture and rearrange the tables and armchairs so that the room looks like something out of a magazine.

Garage makeover

Garages are difficult – they’re often small storage units which you use to keep your tools, car, and all the things you rarely use in your household (suitcases filled with old files, kitchen appliances which you swear you’ll use again, etc). If you’re looking for a way to make the space more useful, you can think about transforming it into a small apartment, music studio, or even a home theatre. The process of knock down rebuild in Brisbane can be involved, so make sure you have proper permits. Also, it would be a good idea to hire a team of professionals specialized in demolishing and rebuilding to ensure you’re getting the space of your dreams in a safe way.

Mix it up

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Another simple way to make your home more dynamic and interesting is to mix different styles. Still, if you mix too much you’ll risk getting a chaotic home with a bunch of colours which will tire your eyes. Use dominant colours, that will allow you to add colourful details without causing confusion. Also, you’ll want to keep the scale in mind – you don’t need huge armchairs next to delicate wooden coffee tables and minimalist lamps. By adding new flooring, you’ll introduce a new style into your space.

There are so many ways to show to the world and other people who you are: the way you dress, your choice of books and music, your job, and especially your home. These things can reflect not only your likes and preferences, but also your social standing. Whether you’re into minimalism or the concept of ‘luxury living’, your home is always a reflection of who you are, your safe haven and your comfort zone, and you should take good care of it.

How To Decorate Your Kids’ Room

Adequate room décor is a really important part of child’s developing personality. Like the rest of their peers as well as adults, kids also love to have their own corner that will properly represent their individuality and creativity. What’s more, when they feel comfortable in the environment of their room, they will be able to concentrate on different tasks better as well as rest with ease. In that respect, make sure to approach the kids’ room décor with them as main guides and advisors.

Specific themes

Always make sure to discuss the possible décor options with your kids. If there is a certain hero, movie, TV show or book that they especially like, they might express the wish to have their room décor done accordingly. Matching the colors and adding details that would suit the chosen theme is not at all difficult, but it can make for a very happy and satisfied child, so be sure to ask these questions and work together before you start doing anything else.

Functionality and comfort

Even if you go by certain theme for décor, the room still has to be pretty functional with enough space for both work and play. In that respect, try not to overstuff your child’s room with furniture and accessories that they won’t use or benefit from. Try out different layouts until you reach the conclusion what would be the perfect organization for your child’s room. Remember, you shouldn’t have to sacrifice comfort over functionality or vice versa.

Think ahead

When you start your décor and room equipping, you can consider the essentials for a few years ahead. This is a pretty useful approach especially if you don’t have to use really bold thematic colors and special furniture. For example, buying a bigger bed for your kid can serve them for many years, in the future as well. When it comes to study area, you can check out adjustable chairs and desks. That way, you can change up the height to suit your child’s growth properly. Of course, if your kid is still very young, you should expect some drastic changes again in the future, but you should still try to be frugal and future-oriented, even if it’s just for a couple of years.

Essential accessories

Kids’ rooms still need more than a simple bed, wardrobe, chair and desk. Think of some effective storage solutions for toys and such. If you want the wardrobe to be for clothes only, some decorative trunks that agree with your child’s liking can be a great storage solution for toys when they’re young, and other bits and pieces when they get older. Also, you can play with different types of affordable lighting you can find online and make the whole room brighter so your youngest can play and read. Do not forget to leave a small light near the bed in case your child is afraid late at night. Find some great lamp in shape of their favorite hero and make it look funny and usable.

Make it all about your kid

It’s essential that you don’t forget whom you’re decorating the room for. It shouldn’t be about you and your wishes when you were young, but your child’s. In that respect, always listen to your kid’s requests and use your ideas as suggestions. If you want to inspire creativity and confidence in your child even more, think about creating an interesting DIY art wall display that will feature some of their best drawings, crafts and even poems and stories.

Kids’ rooms are usually smaller compared to the rest of the rooms, so make sure to assess the space you have at your disposal properly. Remember, kids need their own room to spend time in and have fun or relax, not live in it. So, make it as creative as possible but refrain from introducing too many things that they don’t need in their own little paradise.