Spring on the Cheap

Many of us are still grabbing jackets before we head outside, but there's no doubt about it-spring is here! Whether you live in a high rise apartment or a cottage in the country, these tips will help you and your kids make the most of this beautiful season.

Instead of expensive plants, try this-
There's no need to spend a ton of money at the nursery when you can just grab several packs of seeds for a few bucks. I remember when I was putting in my seed order from a catalog. I let each of my kids pick out a pack of seeds. My oldest daughter decided to try her hand at Curly-Q Cucumbers, seedless cucumbers that grow spirally. I did not think they would be able to grow, but I had to keep my promise and I ordered them just the same. Believe it or not, that summer, we had more Curly-Q Cucumbers than we knew what to do with. You never know what will happen with seeds-they are full of so much potential (just like kids). Go ahead and turn it into a family project and pick out seeds for everyone.

Instead of pricey greenhouses, try this-
When you are planting seeds, there is no need to buy expensive grow lights or portable greenhouses. I love saving the clear plastic covered containers from bakeries. These are the perfect little containers to start your garden because they are clear to enable the light to come in, but they are covered to protect them from the cold. If you have a sunny window, then you will have plenty of light for seeds to sprout.

Instead of peat pots or sprouting pellets, try this-
They may look inexpensive, but buying lots of them really adds up. Try my little trick of using cardboard paper towel or toilet paper tubes. Simply cut them up to lengths that are around two inches and fill them with potting soil. Rest them upright in a tray and use these babies to sprout seeds. Because they are open at the bottom, you can just plant them, tube and all, directly into the ground. The roots will grow out of the bottom and the cardboard is biodegradable. Wow! Cheap and eco-friendly-you can not beat that!

Instead of an outdoor gardening plot, try this-
Okay, so not all of us have acres to grow our cut flowers or organic veggies. If you have some spare containers, then that's all you need. But do not go purchase a bunch of pots at the nursery. You probably already have plenty around you. Perhaps you can put some drainage holes in an old wagon and grow some flowers or maybe you can find an old plastic bucket to grow some fresh tomatoes. Remember to rethink everything and get creative.

Instead of bottles of chemicals, try this-
No doubt about it, organic is the way to go! When you plant your little sprouts side by side, do some research on companion planting. When you plant certain herbs, flowers, and veggies side-by-side, they do their job at keeping away unwanted diseases and pests. Also, instead of buying weed killer, surround your plants with plenty of mulch (you can also use newspaper) so that weeds do not even get a chance to sprout. Save your money (and your health) and go organic this spring.

Remember, saving money is usually as easy as asking yourself this one simple question, "Can I use what I already have?" If you keep being creative, then you'll find those pennies adding up very quickly. Now for the real question-what are you going to do with all that extra zucchini?

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How To Power Wash Your Shed

When you have found one of the many sheds for sale, the next step is to keep it preserved. The most important thing to consider in the upkeep of your garden storage shed are: Time, Cost and Methods. All of it comes down to repairs and approaches to schedule them correctly along with how much you want to pay for them. Here we’re going to discuss strategies to keep your shed in good working order as well as how to do it on a budget.

One thing that will quickly ruin you shed is dirt and grime accumulation. Dirt will most probably occur regardless of whether you prefer it or not, but the important thing is to stay in front of it. Make sure to differentiate dirt from black mildew. Black mold will take place even when it is hot and dry. The good news is that dirt and mold can be quickly cleaned off using an electric power washer. Although the paint is peeling, go on and power wash that shed just before repainting a shed. If there is green mildew it means there is moisture trapped somewhere. Before you electric power wash consider and discover the source of the trouble. Check and make sure all mold, dirt and debris are removed before you prime and paint. The most beneficial cleaner to make use of for power washing is bleach mixed with drinking water. Make sure you check your concentrations and protect your skin and eyes before starting.

Probe the wooden exterior and interior of your shed to test for strength. If the wood looks gentle or soft, you could be subject to wood rot. Checking for wooden rot is very important to accomplish any time after a tough rain or simply a rainy season. Should you uncover wood rot: under no circumstances fear! Repair is easy as well as not very expensive to resolve. You should remove all rotten wood areas as well as test the surrounding wood to ensure the rot hasn’t spread. Swap the region with new sound wooden and prime and paint. It is actually always much better to repair wood rot mainly because wood rot is usually localized and would not require a whole replacement of siding.

The overall cleanliness within your garden shed is important to its longevity. Use insecticides on the inside and exterior of your garden barn to help keep out carpenter ants and bees which can damage the wood and add to wood rot. Aside from chemicals to keep wood destroying insects out, a little bit of elbow grease and a keen eye are all you need to keep you new shed or pole barn looking good for years to come. If you do start to notice some determination, hopefully you can follow our simply steps to rectify the situation and keep on enjoying your new garden shed.

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Vintage Telephones – Collectible Vintage Phones Help Us Dial Into Our Past

If you have been looking for a way to bring a piece of history into your home or office a vintage telephone may be just the thing. Whether you choose to start a collection of phones or just choose a single phone to accent your decor, vintage phones not only look great, but are a fun reminder of simpler days. Read on for some tips and information on starting a collection of vintage phones or choosing the perfect piece to accent your home today.

Because there are so many different styles of vintage telephones out there a good place to start is by narrowing in on a particular style that you like. Some of the most popular styles of older phones include rotary phones, Princess phones from the 1950's, Art Deco phones, Bakelite phones and candlestick phones.

If you are going to be starting a collection you should take some time to browse through the various styles that are out there and find one or two that really strike a cord with you. By collecting just certain styles of phones your collection will be more cohesive and you will be able to become more knowledgeable about the particular types of phones that you choose.

If you are choosing a vintage phone for your home, take a look around your house at your other decor and choose a style of phone that matches with the rest of your things. For instance, if a lot of your decor has an Art Deco feel to it you may want to choose an Art Deco phone to compliment it.

One thing that many people are not aware of is that many of the vintage and antique phones that are for sale online today have been restored and updated so they actually work with modern phone systems. Even if you get a phone that has not been restored it is often possible to send it off to a person who specializes in restoring old phones to have them bring it up to date for relatively little money. That means that you can have a vintage phone that does not just look great, but that actually works as well. Talk about a great conversation piece!

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Save Your Breath: How To Sell In Trade Shows Without Pitching

You stand there, in front of your great presentation material, wearing just the right suit or logo shirt, handing out some gimmick with your company name on it, wearing just the right smile or look of professionalism. You might even have a fishbowl at the table – or some type of contest material – to collect business cards of passers for later use in your sales process. But the worst part of doing a trade show is losing your voice.

Each visitor that stops by your booth gets your pitch. You feel compelled to tell each person why your product is great, why it's different from the competition (which might be located directly across from your booth and getting a lot more attention than you're getting). You've learned the elevator spiel and how to do a pitch in 30 seconds, so the person passing by will 1. be captivated by your information, 2. stop, and 3. make a purchase.
And you do this for each and every person passing by.

Why?

WHAT IS YOUR OBJECTIVE?

Let's start with figuring out why you're even at the trade show. You're probably there to get some brand recognition (sales are usually not completed at trade shows) and get your material and pitch into the hands of buyers. The visitors are, after all, self-selected hot prospects.

Or are they? In reality, you have no idea why a person is walking by your booth. I've walked around trade shows just to see how people are selling. And each time I've come within a few feet of the booth, I get barraged with a pitch, data, and more information than I know what to do with. Do the sales folks know why I'm there? Nope. Do they ask? Nope. They just pitch and pitch and pitch. And are they cheery!

If your objective is to brand your product, just being there with a great presence is carrying your visual brand forward. For that you do not need anything more than to stand there and look professional.

Why else might you be there? To sell product? OK. Let's take a look at this. Odds are that you're not going to make a sale at the show itself. You might walk away with business cards, but that does not mean people are buyers.

HOW TO SELL AT A TRADE SHOW

If you want to sell, pitching to people as they come to your booth is not the way to do it.

Here's a truth: people do not make purchasing decisions based on information. I know this comes as a shock to those of you who regularly stand at booths at trade shows and pitch your hearts (and lungs) out. I'll say it again: pitching product, making data about your product available, will not make a sale. Oh, it will help close the sale once the buyer is at that point in the sales cycle that s / he needs data to complete his / her picture. But it will not make a sale.

A sale gets made when a buyer decides to make a purchase. Selling and buying are two different activities. For some reason, sellers believe that if they sell, buyers should know how and why to buy. But that's not true.

Sellers concentrate on finding buyers who probably have a need, and creating some means to present their product in a way that well-chosen buyers may understand or recognize a need. In other words, it's a crap shoot.

Buyers focus on finding solutions that will optimize their status quo. To do this they must recognize any outstanding issues that are getting in the way of an optimized work space, seeking to easily correct what might be lacking, and to manage whatever changes will occur once a corrective solution is discovered.

Pitching a product will address none of the above – unless the buyer has already completed all of the above actions and is seeking out a solution with parameters that will match their unique dynamics. In other words, when you focus your sale on product information, you're playing a numbers game.

Why are people at trade shows? Let's see if I can count a few of the reasons:

1. they are in town for the day and had nothing better to do;

2. they are in your field and want to see what the competition is doing;

3. they are deciding to buy a new company and want to garner promotion ideas;

4. they think they might have a problem that a product similar to yours might solve, but are not sure what a solution would look like and are running around the trade show to collect possible solutions.

None of the above reasons would close a sale for you.

HOW TO USE YOUR PRESENCE EFFECTIVELY

Trade shows are wonderful opportunities to ferret out prospective buyers (usually in category # 4 above) and teach them how to decide what a solution would look like.

As a visitor approaches your booth, as a rapid question that gets them to determine what's missing from their status quo that, if corrected, would create an optimal solution for them. For # 1-3 above, they will shift the conversation to something more personal, and you'll have saved your breath since you will not have to pitch.

When someone comes by that actually is seeking a solution, use the facilitative questions to lead them through their solution-discovery process. Help them discover what's missing in their current environment, how they can fix the problem with familiar resources, and how to make sense of all the systems issues that need to be managed before they can allow a solution into their culture.

Then, you are only asking questions while they are doing the talking – and you make pitches to those people who understand that they need you, specifically, to solve their problem.

You then not only create a customer, but you save your voice.

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Interior Decorating Styles – Part Five – The 20th and 21st Century

Knowledge is power. And hopefully, after reading this fifth and final part of the series on interior decorating styles you feel empowered to shop with confidence, speak to a decorator or designer, or to attempt your own decorating project on your own. I believe that when a person knows their preferred decorating style it will allow them to proceed with confidence. You'll notice I say preferred style because I also believe everyone is drawn to more than one decorating style. However, your preferred style should be the one that dictates your decisions concerning big ticket items.

In part five we will conclude the series by taking a peek into the 20th and 21st century.

In the Early 20th century there were a number of revivalist styles, but the 2 styles that were prevalent were Art Deco and Modernism. The term Art Deco was coined in 1925. The style was derived from works from the early 20th century art movements of Cubism, Expressionism, Futurism, and from African and native South American art. Prior to the mid 1920s, Art Deco was characterized by rounded and romantic motifs like garlands and rosebuds, but during the late 1920s and 30s, those round motifs were replaced by abstract and geometric motifs. In a nutshell, Art Deco is best recognized by clean lines and smooth planes in walls, ceilings, and with contrasting colored walls and woodwork and textiles with geometric or bold floral patterns. The furniture was generously upholstered and veneered with fine wood.

The Modernist style of architecture and decoration was wholeheartedly adopted on both sides of the Atlantic between the 1st and 2nd world wars. Modern design avoided using unnecessary ornaments and highlighted the industrial origins of modern building material, furniture, and textiles. In a Modern space you would not see displays of bric-a-brac or knick knacks in.

The Modernism style included elements such as chrome and glass furniture and pale walls and ceilings. The curtains were abstract or geometric patterned and carpets were often laid over parquet floors. Hi-rise apartments or lofts are typically decorated in the Modern Style. These types of spaces usually have floor to ceiling windows and exposed material like metal pipes and are very sparsely decorated. The idea is to have as much unobstructed space as possible. One drawback is that these spaces can also come across as cold and uninviting.

During the late 20th century and 21st century, since the end of the 2nd World War, there have been 2 outstanding trends in interior design and decoration: one terribly Retrospective and the other basically Futuristic. So, in essence, the late 20th and early 21st century is both looking back to decorating styles for inspiration as well as reaching forward to improving upon what is already there and developing new ideas. Classicism, in all its varying interpretations, has been the most enduringly fashionable and least faddish style of the late 20th and early 21st century. In addition, significant and successful reproductive reinterpretations or recreations of just about all the styles have been made even more doable by the response of manufacturers and importers. And, people who live in period homes today are beginning to restore and decorate them in the original period style.

Probably the style talked about most these days is Contemporary. That is because Contemporary simply means today or current . In actuality, any style can be interpreted as Contemporary by using current day materials. I often like to consider Contemporary an application or interpretation rather than a style in and of itself.

I could not tell you every decorating detail but I did tell you enough to give you a good working knowledge of the contributions offered to the decorating industry over the centuries. I hope you feel enlightened and empowered as you approach your next decorating project.

© Rena Bullard 2010

This article may be reprinted, in its entity, with copyright information.

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The Types of Pheromones Present In A Human Pheromone Product

Pheromones originally referred to the chemical secreted by an animal which are usually associated with insects and that which greatly influence the behavior, physiology, and development of other species, including the attraction towards the opposite sex. There are scientific studies, however, that prove that even human beings also produce pheromones inside the body. These pheromones are important, not only for sexual appeal reasons, but also to make people around you feel comfortable with you.

In humans, the pheromones are secreted into the skin through the apocrine glands or what we call the human scent glands. These glands are usually found in hairy areas of the body such as the arm pits and the pubic region. The hairs in these areas further help disperse the pheromones effectively.

All people secret pheromones, however, our bodies do not produce well enough of these chemicals. That is why there is an outburst of human pheromone products in the market to be able to make up for the lack or deficiency in the capacity of the body to produce pheromones. There were scientific studies conducted to prove the efficiency of these human pheromone products but you can always see it for yourself if it could really work for you.

Human pheromone products usually and essentially contain 4 pheromones: the androstenone, Androstenol, Androsterone, and the Androstadienone.

The Androstenone pheromone is found in both men and women but is however known as a male pheromones. It is responsible for the dominant, intimidating, and aggressive aura or personality of a person. The Androstenol pheromone is responsible for the friendly and sociable personality of a person. It often induces lots of talking and comfort and often causes conversation among people.

A pheromone that signifies masculinity is the Androsterone. This pheromone creates an impression of relativity and protection for men. As a women, when you see a man and you suddenly felt like you could depend on him for protection, that man's Androsterone pheromone is probably working actively.

Androstadienone is another pheromone that must be present in a human pheromone product. This pheromone is also known as the 'love pheromone' because of the romantic or loving feeling and reaction it induces in women. Androstadienone affects the brain activities of women the most and focuses primarily on the attention and social cognition areas of the brain.

The above-mentioned types of pheromones must all be present in a human pheromone product for it to work effectively. These chemicals are highly responsible for the natural reactions and feelings we could feel towards other people near to us. And yes, that's the magnificence of human pheromones.

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The Young Person’s Guide to Bristol

Do you want to know why Bristol was chosen as the location for E4’s award-winning teen drama ‘Skins’? The answer is so simple… Bristol is cool! Thanks to ongoing urban regeneration projects, and a council and local community that really care about their home, Bristol is now one of the UK’s hippest, and most up and coming cities.

Whether you visit the city as a tourist or decide to study at one of the two universities in town, you’ll find there never seems to be enough time to see and do everything.

Art Scene

Arty folk will feel right at home in Bristol. Why not start with a walking tour that takes in some of Banksy’s greatest works? The local graffiti artist has achieved worldwide fame, and his hometown is where you can see some of his best known works. Some are located on Frogmore St, at Bristol Children’s Hospital, and The Canten.

You can continue the tour in the Stokes Croft area. Thanks to its vast displays of graffiti (not all by Banksy), it has been deemed an outdoor gallery. Many artists boast studios here, some of which open to the public for exhibitions.

The Christmas Steps Arts Quarter is brimming with galleries, including Blaze, Cube Gallery, 3D Gallery and Jenny Life. At some you can expect to be allowed to make your own works of art.

More traditional attractions include Bristol Museum and Art Gallery, and Blaise Castle.

Nightlife

Bristol caters for both fans of mainstream nightlife, and the underground scene. Many bars and clubs are located near and around Queen Square, and St. Nicholas Market. Popular mainstream haunts include The Warehouse, Oceana, and Queenshilling that churn out chart-topping hits, R&B, hip hop, and dance.

For a different night out, head to Thekla, a bar and club with regular live music nights situated on a boat moored at East Mud Dock.

Many legendary underground venues are in the Stokes Croft area. These include Blue Mountain, Club Dimensions, Attic, and Club UK.

It’s also worth looking out for less conventional club nights or modern day raves like those featured on ‘Skins’. For the best up-to-date information, ask staff at bars, galleries and vintage shops, and look out for flyers and zines.

Shopping

It’s easy to spend money in Bristol. If high street stores are your cup of tea, head to the city centre’s Broadmead area and its pedestrian streets, or hit the very modern Cabot Circus shopping centre with over 120 retail units. A further 100 shops can be found at The Galleries nearby.

For something a little different, venture to Park Street that was recently nominated for the Google ‘UK’s Hippest Street’ award. It’s flooded with boutiques, vintage outlets and other quirky shops. You could also check out St. Nicholas Market in The Old City where you can buy anything from edible treats to wearable goodies to homeware.

If you’re visiting the city, check the local hotels for discounted rates or weekend package deals. A good hotel in Bristol should be close to transport links to lessen your travel time, and within walking distance of attractions like Queen Square and the River Avon.

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Dualit Is the Preferred Brand World-Wide for Commercial Toasters

If you think about it, we eat toast on a daily basis. Breakfast isn’t quite the same without a slice or two of toast. Whether you prefer brown or white toast, you want your toast with your bacon and eggs breakfast. Restaurants that serve toast need to consider this and have to make provisions for making large numbers of toast in a quick and reliable manner. The Dualit Commercial Toaster has revolutionized toasting for these restaurants. Dualit Toasters are manufactured for bulk toasting, are reliable and long lasting. This catering equipment can also be used by many caterers, hotels and other catering establishments that have a requirement for toast.

The Dualit Toaster can toast 6 slices at a time. You can toast 2 or 4 slices, if required. It has a 3 kilowatt power output with a timer setting. In addition, it has a voltage of 220 volts for fast browning of the bread slices. It is a small lightweight unit that weighs only 5 kilograms and is 460 x 220 x 220 millimeters in size. Due to its power, despite its small stature, it can toast approximately 200 slices of bread per hour. It is able to do this because it is manufactured with an innovative heating element that can toast continuously without burnout. You could serve a lot of customers very quickly without being worried about a toaster that will stall half way through the breakfast service. The timer setting allows you to set the toaster accurately every time. This will give you consistently browned toast for every customer. The Dualit Toaster has been fitted with a removable crumb tray which makes cleaning and removing the bread crumbs very easy. This commercial toaster is not only manufactured from a technological point of view; it also has a modern design that is aesthetically appealing.

Dualit has been manufacturing catering equipment for the home and for commercial use for over 70 years. They value invention and well-engineered products that last for years. Due to their innovative products they have won many awards over the years such as the Excellence in Housewares Award and their Classic Toaster has won the Good Housekeeping Approved Award, amongst many others. They have a no compromise attitude when it comes to the quality of their homeware and commercial catering equipment. It’s clear to see why the Dualit commercial toasters are the preferred brand all around the world in the restaurant industry.

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Lost in Translation: Top Five Marketing Translation Errors

When companies decide to launch a product or service into a new market there are a whole host of factors they need to weigh up. A couple which may seem fairly insignificant are translation and localisation. If errors are made when a product name, motto or strapline is translated, the results can be potentially very harmful.

At best, a poor translation may be the cause of potential embarrassment to the company concerned. However, any mistake can have the effect of damaging the image of a company. Aside from the problems brought about by poor grammar, spelling or other text inaccuracies, a poor translation or badly localised piece of work can result in complaints and in some cases even litigation.

My fascination with this subject matter started as a child learning Spanish and travelling to Spain. The earliest example I can remember are “Bum” crisps. “Bum” in this example signifies an explosion of taste or aroma I would imagine as you open the packet or eat the crisps, but makes them less appetising to the English consumer!

So here are 5 of the top Marketing Translation blunders made by companies around the world:

1.Thinking about buying a new car? Well, be careful! The famous example of Chevy’s Nova is now part of folklore. “No Va” in Spanish does mean “it doesn’t go” but didn’t actually cause Chevrolet to withdraw it from sale in Latin America as legends would have you believe. However, there are some true examples like Nissan’s launch of the “Moco” in Asia which to a Hispanic market means “Bogey”! There is also Mazda’s “LaPuta” which means “Prostitute” or “Whore” in Spain. And finally there is the Mitsubishi “Pajero”, still seen on many roads today. This actually means “Wanker” in Spain or “Liar” in Latin America!

2. Again with a Spanish theme, is the example of Parker Pens. They are proud of the fact that their ballpoint pens won’t embarrass you by leaking in your pocket like some other brands’ pens do. When getting this message across to the Mexican market they used the verb “embarazar” which is commonly mistaken to mean “to embarrass”. In fact it means “to impregnate” which meant that their slogan actually said “It won’t leak in your pocket and make you pregnant”

3. In 2002, the UK sports brand Umbro marketed a new pair of trainers with the name of Zyklon. The company proceeded to receive many complaints from individuals and companies alike due to the fact that this was the name of the infamous gas used by the Nazis to kill millions of Jews in concentration camps in WW2.

4. IKEA, the Swedish homeware and furniture corporate, brought out a new desk which they named “Fartfull” when launching it to the North American market. “Fart” actually means speed in Swedish and was even the name of a successful motor racing magazine in Sweden in the 50’s and 60’s.

5. And finally the famous American baby food brand called “Gerber”. This can mean “To Vomit” in France which is if nothing else is somewhat unfortunate.

So in summary it is clear to see why accurate translation and localisation is worth getting right and the best way to achieve this is to employ a professional company. Stello Group is an established Translation Agency and we have expertise in many areas including Marketing Translation and Website Translation.

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The Best Way To Use A Chimney Charcoal Starter

If you’re looking to host a barbeque, using a Chimney Charcoal Starter is a safe and simple way to light your charcoal quickly and evenly, without the need for toxic lighter fluids or fire-starters. Plus, it’ll look great in front of your guests and keep your hands clean and burn-free.

Most people have grown accustomed to using lighter fluid for lighting their coal. But it is easy to get burned this way – plus the petroleum can leave your food, and the air around you, smelling nasty. It is the safest and most efficient way to light coal for your barbeque.

Most good manufacturers will give a detailed instruction manual, or even a step-by-step guide to get you started, but if you’re looking for some inside knowledge to impress your guests, you’ll want to read on.

It has a simple design and is easy to use. It’s generally composed of galvanized stainless steel and is cylindrical in shape, with a small wire grate inside. You’ll want to find a chimney-charcoal-starter with thermoplastic handles so that you don’t burn your hands whilst pouring the charcoal on your barbeque.

Firstly, fill your starter with charcoal and place newspaper under the great, before lighting it on fire. However safe your Starter may be, always exercise caution when doing this, as charcoal tends to reach very high temperatures which will burn skin easily. It is best to wear gloves.

Newspaper’s great for getting the coals in the chimney starter going. If it’s exceptionally windy or raining, however (and you’re still braving your barbeque party), you may want to try using a couple of lighter cubes for most heat.

With any good starter, the coals should only take 10-20 minutes or so to become sufficiently hot and ready to use. The top coals will begin to turn slightly grey when they are ready.

The side holes in the cylinder base will make sure that the air circulates through the charcoal for even burning, creating the ‘chimney’ effect after which the product is named. These cylinder designs have been used since the 1960s, so we know that they work well.

Carefully pour the hot charcoal onto the barbeque using heat-protective gloves, and you’re ready to start cooking! Load up your barbeque with burgers, sausages and vegetables as you wish, and you will find that a Chimney-Charcoal-Starter heats enough charcoal to feed a large barbeque party!

Some Starters will even come with cooking tips and recipes for the novice barbeque-user. If not, a quick Google search can generate some good results and tips. It’s best to get out there while the weather’s good, but some Starters will work effectively even in wet and windy weather.

Don’t forget to store your cylinder somewhere safe after you’ve used it as although the best ones have cooling mechanisms, they still tend to stay hot for a while. You wouldn’t want children or pets wandering over to investigate, so use your heatproof gloves or thermoplastic handles to safely remove the Starter from sight.

Make sure when purchasing a Starter that you find one that is easy to store; there’s nothing worse than having bulky equipment that you can’t fit anywhere. A removable handle also comes in useful for when you want to move the Starter to another room, or someone else’s garden party!

Hopefully you should find that by using it, you stay safe and clean. But make sure you take all the necessary precautions when handling hot coal, and wash your hands after use, and before preparing food.

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Vera Wang Perfume Review – Is This the Right Scent For You?

The romance and passion often found in Vera Wang perfumes have their origins in the designer’s fashion experience, where she is widely acclaimed for her outstanding wedding gowns. These are so highly regarded that many celebrities have elected to wear them at their weddings. Her experience with brides and bridal attendants is reflected in the romantic allure of her perfumes.

She entered the fashion industry after failing to make the U.S. Olympic figure skating team in 1968. At the time she was one of the country’s top skaters. However, she also demonstrated an interest and keen eye for fashion, spending sixteen years as a senior fashion editor with Vogue magazine, followed by two years as a design director with Ralph Lauren in New York.

She then opened her first design salon in 1990 at the Carlyle Hotel, also in New York, where she was able to feature wedding gowns and other bridal wear of her own design.

Since that time, Wang has expanded her brand name to include also fragrances, eyewear, jewelry, houseware and shoes. Her perfumes are especially well known and have won a number of prestigious awards, including the FIFA awards for Best Fragrance, as well as for Best Packaging.

Her perfume line was first released in 2002 at Harrods in London. This was Vera Wang for Women. She has also released perfume lines that appeal to men, blending scents to achieve a more masculine fragrance. Her perfumes are designed mainly by Vera Wang herself and she has been strongly influenced in her selection of fragrances by the romantic desire she found in newly weds.

Also in 2002, a homeware products line was launched. This was her China and Crystal Collection.

The perfumes for women are especially noted for being sensual and elegant, as well as feminine. To obtain this distinctive appeal she has blended Bulgarian rose with gardenia, mandarin flower, calla lily, white stephanotis and a touch of musk.

On the other hand, her fragrances for men have made use of crisp yuzu and mandarin leaf to provide a distinctive and refreshing scent. It is also long lasting and many consider it to be masculine and seductive. That gives it special appeal as a gift for partners.

When combined with her flare for packaging and design, her perfume products, which also include the very successful products ‘Princess’ and ‘Flower Princess’, have strong marketing appeal and are in great demand.

Vera Wang perfume continues the success that she achieved with her fashion designs and is considered to embody the passion, romance and sensuality of young lovers.

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Keep Your Closet Clean With An Organizational System

Some people like a neat home environment, and others seem to thrive in clutter. There's nothing wrong with clutter in some rooms of the house, of course – it gives the home a lived-in look and is less intimidating to visitors.

But there are some rooms in the house that simply must be as neat as possible, and one of those rooms is the closet – or more specifically your bedroom closet.

Do you find yourself digging through piles of clothes on the floor to find a pair of shoes for the day? Do you even know where all your shoes are? How about your clothing? Do you have to waste precious morning minutes trying to find a matching outfit because your closet is all of a jumble?

Organizational Units
Whether your closet is currently an empty box waiting for you to fit it out the way you desire, or whether it has already been fitted with nothing more than a hanger pole that runs the width of the closet, you can purchase some kind of organization unit , or units, to help you implement your goal of having a clean, neat, and pleasant-looking place to store one of your most important investments – your clothing!

You know your own situation best. Is only one article of clothing giving you trouble? Your shoes? Your ties? Your belts? Your scarves? Buy a rack fitted especially to take care of those types of items – they will last that much longer if a little extra care is taken for them.

You can take care of your shoes in a multitude of ways. An over-the-door system will allow you to store your shoes behind your closet door, each shoe in its own pocket. Or store your shoes on the floor on angled shelves so that you can see them easier. And if you do not want your shoes in your closet at all, you can even get a cabinet for your bedroom.

Ties and Belts Need A Place of Their Own
Next are your ties and belts. You can continue to loop these over just any old hanger, but chances are when they continue to slip off that you've already gotten frustrated with that process. The solution is simple. Buy something specifically designed for the task, form hangers specifically designed to hold ties or belts in such a way that you can easily see them, easily remove them, and easily replace them.

You can buy individual elements as you discover you need them. However, if you do not care for mismatched items, then you'll want to find an integrated system for your closet, an all-in-one system.

The best thing to do is visit the websites of the many companies that specialize in making organizational systems for office and home. You'll see what they offer, and you can assess what they offer to what you actually need, and then you can make an informed decision.

Companies with websites include Stacks and Stacks Homeware, with organizing systems specifically designed for each room in the house.

Creative Spaces is another website to visit, for they again can help you organize every room in the house. By visiting more than one retailer, you can match your color scheme and see the items in your price range with ease.

Take charge of your life. More importantly, take charge of your closet.

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8 Space Saving Ideas for Your Apartment

If you are about to move into an apartment from a larger home do not despair. There are plenty of ways that you can save space so that you do not need to throw away half of your blessings. It is a good idea to hire a professional removalist company to move your furniture and possessions for you as it is likely that they will have to navigate many flights of stairs, or pack furniture into an elevator to get it up to your apartment. You should also make sure that you change your home insurance over to cover your new apartment.

Built in robes

Every bedroom should have built in robes. This frees up a lot of space, which is important in a bedroom because the bed does take up so much room, and you do want to have space for bedside drawers and sometimes a chest of drawers too. Any unused space along the walls of your apartment might also be candidates for building fixed cupboards on to, especially at the end of a hallway that would just normally be a dead end.

Extra kitchen storage

If you are renovating the kitchen cabinets in your apartment make putting in as much storage space as possible one of your priorities. If you put in an island bench in your kitchen then have lots of cupboards underneath that go right around the entire underside of the bench. Also make use of the space at head height and have cupboards fixed above your benches.

Hidden laundry

If you do not have your own laundry you can always have your washing machine and dryer tucked away behind big folding doors along one wall. Create as much storage space as possible in here too. You can buy things like ironing boards that are attached to the wall, which fold up when not in use, so look for other space saving items like this.

Tuck it away

Use each inch of space you have in a clever way. Like the folding ironing board, look for space saving ideas in homeware shops, at the hardware or in shops that are specifically dedicated to storing solutions.

Arrange your furniture

When you arrange your furniture in your home make sure that you do not have it blocking the flow of traffic through the space or so that it looks overcrowded. You can make your apartment look larger simply by arranging your furniture in an efficient way.

Down size

You might find that you need to down size some of your furniture of appliances. If you are living by yourself or just a partner you might not need to have such a large fridge. If you have just moved to an apartment because the kids have finally grown up and moved out of home then you will not be needing the chair freezer or such a large washing machine any more. You also might find that you are now living in an area where you will go out when entertaining, rather than having people over all the time, so you do not need to have as much furniture to accommodate everyone.

Roller blinds

Curtains can take up a fair bit of space along the wall so install roller blinds instead which simply roll up out of the way.

Convertible furniture

Some furniture can convert and do two jobs instead of one. This helps saves a lot of space. For example you can get tables that convert to coffee tables and lounges that fold out into beds.

There are plenty of space saving ideas for apartment living, you just need to think a little creatively.

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Retro Revival

"I loved the fact that my era is coming back," Smiles 69 year old Joyce Malyne, a retired fashion buyer, as she fumbles through stacks of old Motown vinyl. "It is remarkable how in vogue the forties, fifties and sixties' shapes and designs are at the moment. Funny how these things come round again …"

We live in a modern mirror of the past and as a result of the most popular designs of clothes, interior, car and house accessories also reflect what was fashionable fifty years ago. From the drainpipe jeans seen on Sienna Miller and Kate Moss to the shapes of the bowls Gordon Ramsey is eating out of, everything seems to copy an aspect from past legendary styles.

Johnny Shotton, Manager at To Be Worn Again, Brighton's largest second hand clothes warehouse, agreements that there is nothing more fashionable than clothes from the sixties right now. He says: "We have so many people after clothes from that era. It's unbelievable but great for us! There is a mod night twice a month now, playing music from the fifties and sixties – and authentic Rock n 'Roll bands seem to be popping up left, right and center. "
So why is it that we have turn on progress and gone for revival instead this season?

Richard Jayston, a 27 year old music journalist for Rockfeedback.com, comments: "Things that are that good are never going to disappear. Early music from fortyies blues to the sixties soul, it was just so good. it is only natural that kids start turning back to the roots of this influence.

Joyce warns the over confidant stylish generation below her, however, admitting that: "At the time you know you look good but you think that taking it further and into your home is a good idea too. in the sixties I have to admit I am embarrassed! Some of the more buoyant décor was awful. Orange shag pile carpets with big bold designs and things like that. You have to be careful. "

In an attempt to satisfy the younger generation's lust for retro design without suffering the regret of so many former children of the some what over the top sixties, here are five tips to help you keep retro, classic.

o It's the little things that make the difference
Instead of starting with a change of wall color or a new retro car, try a smaller more affordable change to begin with. Little changes in the home or wardrobe will ensure that the style is something you really like before you commit to that full-on mod haircut, or new wallpaper!

o BE practical
Remember, there is no point having a stylish bag with a hole in it! If those thick shag-pile carpets do take your fancy – will they suit your lifestyle? If you have pets, are they the type that moults? If this is the case, do you really like hoovering that much? It's the same with a haircut or a new wardrobe – If your lifestyle needs a quick wash and go hairstyle, then do not have something cut that will not be liveable. A car that looks fantastic has to be a car that drives well and is economical if you drive to work!

o Commit to a color scheme – and do not be too brash
New décor must match the rest of the house to an extent. A room that draws influence from one era slightly more than another is great – but do not go altogether sixties in one room with huge big designs and then minimalist in the next. Choose a style and maintain a minority level of consistency throughout.

o Match bold with plain
A bright color should be matched with a plain background or visa versa. Go for bright colored bold wallpaper with staple plain accessories or the other way round. This goes for dressing up too – If your accessories scream retro, combine them with a simple outfit. Accessories are the perfect way to set a style off, be it retro Dulton dustpan and brush (see Cubehomewares website in the link below) in the kitchen or a funky curvy bracelet and necklace (various bracelet designs available at To Be Worn Again, Providence Place in Brighton)

o Start with the kitchen!
Lee Dobbins, for Interior decorating 456 explains: "Your kitchen is the room for family, friends, food and fun so you want to be sure it has a great design with big impact." According to Gopal Ahluwalia, vice president for research of the National Association of Home Builders, the kitchen has become the focal point of the home, there is therefore similar accessories like scales and bins that highlight a change of style in an environment where you have a chance to get used to it.

Johnny continues: "Only the other day I had dinner at this restaurant and even the cutlery was curvy and decorated in big chunky patterns reminiscent of the sixties.

Interior design has also taken a turn towards the past, with bold designs and ice-cream pastels at the forefront this month in Wallpaper, the fashionable interior design magazine. Sydney-based SPACE has recently opened their light-filled flagship gallery in the heart of Bangsar – this gallery is adorned with salacious browns, mod stripes and rounded arm chairs – a clear product of the designers various forties and fifties influences.

If you want to go retro, make sure you take steps to ensure your new chosen style fits with your life. There are loads of great retail outlets that sell retro accessories but start small! As Chayse Dacoda, the famous designer and presenter of HGTV's Get in together once said: "Every person and space has a different energy and desire, try to incorporate that into a comfortable, inviting, fluid space that not only serves your purpose, but also is also beautiful. "

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The Trend for Shabby Chic Continues

Shabby chic is a look where furniture, furnishings or homewares have an aged appearance with obvious signs of wear and tear. With new items they are distressed to achieve the appearance of an antique. The look created is different to genuine period decor in that it’s warmer, softer and more sumptuous. Cottage-style meets grandeur.

The style has its origins in the UK and the term Shabby Chic was originally coined, believe it or not, back in the 1980’s not a decade that we usually associate with ‘chic’!

Lets take a quick look back at furnishing and homewares style over the last 30 years or so.

The 1980’s…

During the 80’s, certainly in the UK, furniture was predominantly black or grey painted wood or glass with chrome, while walls were somewhat softer being painted in colours such as apricot white or pale pink, just think Miami Vice and you’ll be heading in the right direction. It was the decade of extravagance and our homes were a place to show this off. Flashy Hi-Fi’s and video players were the ornaments of the day.

The 1990’s…

The 90’s saw the rise in favour of the window dressing style ‘swags & tails.’ The popularity of D.I.Y was on the up and we painted everything, walls, furniture even kitchen cupboards. It was during this decade the term ‘rag rolling’ was born and we saw the revival of chintz… until Ikea put an end to that with their ad campaign ‘chuck out your chintz’!

The Noughties…

The noughties brought the advent, in home interiors, of the neutral palette (and brown leather sofa’s!). At the start of the decade our TV’s were huge… widescreen not flat screen with huge backs to them still, but as technology evolved into the slimline versions we hang on the wall today so our homes became more glossy and streamlined to match. The look was quite cold, granite worktops, wooden floors with sleek and stylish accessories to match.

I believe it was from this cold look of the noughties that our refound love affair with shabby chic began.

Today, shabby chic can be subtle or decadently extravagant. From aged wooden letters spelling out ‘love’ or ‘home’ to oversized wonderfully ornate mirrors. Trinket boxes, hanging hearts, picture frames, lanterns and t-light holders are just a few of the homeware accessories that help achieve the look. Furniture can be sourced in this style or created yourself, but how to do that is for another article! By mixing the aged cottage style that is shabby chic with our uber modern interiors we create a warm, gorgeous, opulent and stylish feel to our homes that’s a sure winner, well for now at least…

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Family Planning: Building a Baby Friendly Bathroom

For any family with young children, baby-proofing the home is always a key safety concern. From installing stair gates to ensuring any and all harmful liquids are safely stowed away, it's important to achieve peace of mind that your youngsters are safe to treadle around the home without being in any danger.

Fortunately, there are loads of ingenious solutions when it comes creating a safe bathroom for a household with small children. Firstly, there are safety precautions to take in the bathroom that you would normally install in nearly all the rooms of your house, such as electrical socket covers and a lock high on the outside of your bathroom door, so that your child simply can not wander in there alone to begin with.

A clip on lock for your toilet seat is easily removed by an adult or older child, but will be sufficient to stop an infant from opening it themselves. This also means the toilet seat will always be returned to its correct (gentlemen), lowered position.

Non-slip bath mats and in-bath adhesive strips can be found in most homeware shops, and will prevent easily avoidable slips on wet floors. Your water heater will also have a maximum temperature setting that can be manually adjusted to a lower setting so that your child can not accidently scald themselves if they manage to turn on the hot taps.

An unexpected bonus to the resurgent popularity of bathroom furniture means that there are now a huge number of styles and finishes of wall-mounted bathroom cabinets available, which will not only complement your existing bathroom decor, but will provide a handy storage area to keep any dangerous items out of the reach of inquisitive little hands. All medicines, supplements, cosmetics and metallic objects, such as razorblades, should be safely stored well above ground level. A stylish, pre-assembled cabinet need not cost a great deal and will create ample storage for all your daily essentials.

Electrical items, such as hairdryers or shavers should also be removed from the bathroom or hidden away between uses, to avoid any burns or accidental contact with water. If you require a bin in your bathroom, try to find a model that can be fitted with the same sort of child lock as the toilet, or find a lockable cupboard in which to place it. A ground level storage unit, such as a vanity unit below your basin, can house your bin, and cleaning products with childproof safety caps, as long as it can be secured with a key.

None of these additions to your bathroom have to cost a great deal to install, and will pay for themselves with the peace of mind guaranteed by knowing that your young child is safe. The key is simply to remain vigilant, cautious and work out what options are best for you.

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How to Find the Best Deals on Technology

The modern world is driven by technology to an ever-increasing level, and with the growth of the technology market the choice is expanding as manufacturers introduce new models and refine their ranges all the time. The rise in popularity of the digital camera is a good measure of the market, with manufacturers abounding and many different levels of ability, features and price available.

Digital cameras have now taken over the photographic market, but finding the right one for you should not be a problem. If you know how much you have to spend, and what you require from your camera, a search on the internet should provide you with plenty of alternative websites offering digital cameras across a wide price range.

What to look for in a camera

Look for the greatest number of pixels the camera takes hosts in – this determines the basic quality – and also take into account the various anti shake mechanisms available on digital cameras these days, and you will be sure to find a camera to meet your needs.

The same is true of video cameras, the digital variety of which is now the market leader and has evolved from the old cine camera and VHS versions of before. Again, there are numerous sites that will come to the fore with a simple web search, and again the variety and specification available is wide ranging.

Lookout for a good size memory – a 30gb hard drive will provide you with a number of hours recording, anything above even more – and for universal docking to transfer your films to your computer.

One time use ideal for holidays

The one time use camera, if you are not looking for an instrument that will last a long time, is popular with holidaymakers and people on daytrips, and is affordable and easy to use. These are available across the internet at a variety of prices, and the primary choice should be made around ease of use and availability of film. Of course, the finished film needs to be given to a developer to produce your photographs, but the ease and simplicity of shooting a series of pictures and not needing to worry about the attractiveness of your camera to thieves, or losing the camera in a busy place, makes a one time use camera a good choice for holidays.

Home entertainment – audio and video

Home entertainment systems are also a sensible buy in the web, with audio and video both broadly available at good prices and with a choice that is almost unending.

In addition to television, home cinema systems are all the rage at the moment and enable you to watch movies with surround sound, and the home entertainment system market also includes DVD, CD, computer and audio devices devised for your pleasure.

If you wish, you can customize your laptop, mobile, I-pod and more with skins, colorful and attractive designs available on websites to make your device stand out from the crowd, and you the envy of your friends and family, too. Some suppliers offer you the opportunity to create your own skin, hence taking the individuality to another level entirely.

Shopping on the web offers convenience, not just in getting the best deal from the widest choice, but also in knowing your purchase will be delivered to your door shortly after you have completed the purchase. Remember to look for reputable, reliable and safe suppliers with what to make your purchase, and you can be sure you have found the best way of buying your items available.

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How To Buy The Best Electric Kettle

Top Factors To The best Electric Kettle

Buying an electric kettle

Which? has spent thousands of hours testing best-selling electric kettles from brands such as Dualit, DeLonghi, Morphy Richards and Breville to discover the ones worthy of a Best Buy award. But how do you narrow down the top performers to find your ideal kettle?

Electric Kettle Top Factors

To help you decide, our checklist sets out what to look for when choosing a new kettle.

Price

They range from £ 5 for a simple plastic one to £ 100 for a designer model in metal with extra features. Plenty kettles are priced between £ 20 and £ 40.

The January sales, or during September when retailers seek to tempt students heading off to university to stock-up on budget kitchen gadgets, are both good times to look for bargains. Buying a matching kettle and toaster set may also save you money, compared to purchasing both items separately.

Size And Weight

An electric kettle is something you're likely to use every day, and kettles that are heavy and poor balanced can be a strain to hold, which is why each of our kettle reviews includes a rating for handling the kettle. Before you buy, head to a department store or large homeware shop to try out a display model to see how different feel to pick up and tip.

If you find a kettle cumbersome even when it's empty, it's probably one to leave on the shelf.

Ease Of Use

Should you decide have arthritis or despite trouble gripping things, certain properties might make a kettle better suited to your necessities. Getting a kettle that you can complete through the spout will mean you will not want to make taking the cover off. When you require to use the cover, seek out one with the easy-to-switch switch release which opens up the top in width.

Some of them are usually easy to lift up because of the handle position over the top of the electric kettle. Make sure the handle also continues far enough to the back of the kettle for it to be well balanced to pour, while also keeping your hand clear of any steam that may rise from the spout.

Cordless kettles are easier to move about than kettles with electrical cords.

If you're partially sighted, opt for a kettle with clear controls, contrasting colors for the kettle body and lid, plus a water level gauge that's easy to read.

Speed ​​Of Boiling

One of the most important considerations is how quickly the kettle boils. We assess every kettle we test on how long it takes to boil a liter of water and how long it takes to boil the minimum amount. The slowest kettles can take almost 2 min longer than the fastest.

Energy Efficiency

Your kettle is not as power-hungry as a large kitchen appliance like a fridge-freezer or boiler – but investing in an efficient kettle can save you energy and time whenever you boil the kettle, as well as a few pence a week.

We measure how much energy a kettle uses during our lab tests and look at the minimum amount of water you can boil in the kettle.

Color And Finish

Colorful one can brighten up a neutral kitchen or complete a bold color scheme. You can buy one in almost any color from red, blue, and black through to bolder shades such as pink or green – but you might have to hunt down unusual or limited-edition styles at certain stores. Some of them illuminate when boiled.

There are also different finishes to consider. Stainless-steel and chrome are more common on high-end kettles, while cheaper kettles tend to have a plastic finish.

It's worth noting that the body of stainless-steel kettles can become quite hot when boiling water. You would not normally expect to touch these parts of the kettle for any length of time, but if you struggle to lift a kettle with one hand you might be better off with a plastic kettle, as they tend to stay a little cooler on the outside and are often lighter in weight.

Electric Kettle Brands

Breville, Dualit, DeLonghi, Morphy Richards and Russell Hobbs are among the big names in the electric kettle market – but you'll also find cheap and cheerful own-brand kettles from Tesco, Sainsbury's, Asda and Argos.

A lot of electric kettle manufacturers produce a wide range of models with slightly different designs and some of these are exclusive to particular shops. Some stores only quote the model name (eg Spectra, Montana or Accents), whereas some give the model number instead.

Noise Of The Electric Kettle

A noisy electric kettle can be a real irritation while you're waiting to brew a cuppa.

We measure noise levels while a kettle boils and ask a listening panel to rate how intrusive the noise is.

So you must use you ear for assessment.

For small households

If you're the only tea drinker in your house there are likely to be occasions where you'll be boiling the kettle just for yourself. It's more efficient, and quicker, too, if you only boil as much water as you need, so look for a kettle that can boil a minimum of one cup, or 250ml, where possible.

Check the water-level marks in the kettle – it's every fine and additionally good if a kettle can boil a small amount of drinking water, but if there are not any marks it will not feel noticeable regarding how little H2O you are able to place in.

Matching Small Appliances

Look out for electric kettle with matching toasters, coffee makers and jug blenders, which can add some style to your kitchen. Bundled kitchen sets are available to buy for various brands, and can cost less than buying the equivalent products individually.

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It's Beginning to Feel a Lot Like Christmas

Christmas is such a special time we like to make sure that our homes are warm and welcoming to the friends and family that we hope will call in and sometimes even stay over during the holiday period. For those of us living in the northern hemisphere it can also be a cold and chilly time. Before the winter blues set in it makes sense to offset any low moods by adding some extra warmth and comfort to your home in preparation for 'hibernation' and staying in during the long dark nights when things like some light evening gardening are no longer a possibility .

Preparing your home for family and friends can be exciting. As well as looking through holiday brochures in the hope that some sunshine will be on the horizon come the summer, decorations are another thing we all thing of. Just as important as decorations is the decor in your home. You might not be up to a full repaint and refloor option at the moment but you can certainly ring the changes and update your environment through judicious use of soft furnishings, curtains and bedding to bring a new look to rooms in your house. At this time of the year you can justify the expense of new accessories when they help to insulate your rooms and save you money on energy costs in the home. Thermal lined curtains, cozy throws, snuggly bedding and warm colors to lift your mood or add to a festive theme are all worthwhile. The satisfaction you experience when you achieve a new look and lift the mood of your household is priceless.

Times are still tough though there is some hope on the horizon as far as the economy is concerned but it might be a while for many of us to feel the benefits of any recovery. There are online fabrics retailers of curtains and bedding and homeware that have remarkably affordable products, so get browsing and get a bargain. For the price of a takeaway for two you could easily have a throw or cushions to brighten a room. Instead of those daily coffee shop lattes you could put the pennies (probably pounds!) Away and within a fortnight you could have enough cash for some brand new bedding or curtains or blinds. You might lose a few pounds in weight too! How good would that feel? You could fit into that snazzy Christmas outfit you want to wear to impress collections and family with. Too many of us over indulge of festive fayre so anything that helps to make you both look and feel good has got to be a bonus. When the partying and celebrations are over you can relax in comfort in your updated room under a snuggly throw with your new favorite cushion and a good book or DVD or CD and consider what hobby you're going to undertake to get you through to spring time .

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How To Find A Wall Plate Rack

So you have decided you need your next must have kitchen accessory. You are fed up with not having enough storage space in your kitchen. In particular you find bending down to that low cupboard to get the plates out for dinner is just becoming too much. We all enjoy cooking and baking but cleaning up afterwards and returning the crockery back to the cupboard is a chore. The answer to all our needs is a wall mounted plate rack. Not only will it create some well needed storage space but will also use a space in the kitchen few of us use. Apart from all these reasons a well designed rack mounted on the wall that matches the style of your kitchen could be the icing on the cake of your kitchen design.

Where to look for wall mounted plate racks

A lot will depend on your budget and when you need your cabinet. If you have a larger budget and specific space and number of plates you wish to accommodate then finding a local cabinet maker or carpenter to design a bespoke wall mounted plate rack is the preferable choice. However those of us with a smaller budget could always look for a bargain at the car boot or garage sales. The easier option is to use the internet and a good tip is to use Google image search as you can soon whittle down the plate rack you are looking for. If all this fail's there is always the Google web search or good homeware internet sites such as IKEA or Amazon.

Mounting Your Cabinet

Many people see this a after after thought of purchasing a wall mounted plate rack however this must be given important consideration. Firstly you should position your plate a rack in a place that is easily accessible but not where people will walk into it. It should also be at a convenient height to prevent excess bending or reaching. Finally you must ensure your wall plate rack is being mounted on is sturdy and the fixings you have chosen will secure it to the wall for many years to come.

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Luxury Wedding Favors on a Budget

Every bride wants to give her guests the best wedding favors they can find, but often budget is an issue and prevails them from picking the perfect favors they so desire. But achieving luxurious favors for little money is more about savvy shopping then it is about having a big budget, along with a little trickery when it comes to packaging and presentation!

The cheapest way to purchase your wedding favors is to go wholesale. You will find specialist favor wholesalers online, while locally you may find wholesalers for items like confectionary, edibles and giftware. Buying in bulk is always cheaper and despite most favorable buyers offer quantity discounts, going direct to the wholesaler will be cheaper again. You will have to meet minimum order requirements but this is a good option if you have a lot of guests to provide for.

Quantity discounts are usually offered by the larger retailers but can vary from store to store. Do research the market online and compare the discounts offered by various favor stores, along with free shipping offers and discount codes for signing up for their newsletter.

Clearance sales can offer fabulous prizes at knockdown prices but stocks maybe limited and you may not be able to order sufficient benefits to meet your needs. You could always mix and match instead, buying different favors and dividing them between your guests (a good idea for couples).

Online wedding favor stores can be more expensive then equivalent items found in local stores or gift shops. Shop around locally, such as your local grocery store, for things like mini photo frames, luxury chocolates and gourmet teas and coffees. Homeware stores are also a good source of items that make great wedding favors like silver plated bud vases, luxury candles, drink stirrers and shot glasses.

Another option for sourcing luxury wedding favors on a budget are online auction websites. These sites a good places to look for overstocks, brides selling off favors that were excess to their needs or maybe never handed out! They are also good places for packaging and decorations all at much cheaper prices than specialist favor stores.

Finally even the cheapest wedding favors can be made to look amazing and expensive with some clever packaging. Mini glass jars can cost just a few cents each and are lovely for candies, flower seeds and tea leaves. Purchase a couple of meters of faux silk for a few dollars and make your own favor bags or use simple craft boxes decorated with wide ribbon and a fresh flower head on top.

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