Day: April 16, 2019

Bath Hardware Perfect to Upgrade Your Bathroom

Installing new bathroom hardware is one of the most popular – and most affordable – ways to upgrade your bathroom. It allows you to bring the entire style of the room together and spice up a would-be boring bathroom. There are numerous options for bathroom hardware and the first place to start is the finish.

The finish you choose for your bathroom hardware should be the same through. This is one of the musts when remodeling a bathroom. Whether you choose brushed nickel, rubbed bronze, brushed natural pewter or something completely different make sure the finish extends to everything, from light fixtures and towel racks to the bathtub hardware and faucet. This will ensure your bathroom looks planned, put together and stylish.

So what do you do after you've fallen in love with a finish? Next comes the fun part: shopping. Decide what your bathroom will need. Common accessories and hardware items include the sink faucet and bathtub hardware, a light fixture, toilet paper holder and soap dish. Be sure not to overlook the special touches like cabinet handles, towel stands and wastebaskets. Shop around to get the best deal on bathroom hardware. As long as you stick with one finish it can be very easy to purchase items individually from a number of stores.

There are a number of advantages to upgrading your bathroom hardware. If your home was built new or comes with cheap starter hardware replacing the hardware can actually increase the value of your home. It may also be a good idea if you purchase a home with mismatched hardware. Lastly, replacing outdated or unattractive bathroom hardware and accessories allows you to completely redo your space and create an oasis.

Keep in mind that replacing the hardware in your bathroom does not have to be expensive. You can also start small. If everything already matches consider replacing just your sink faucet with something grand and luxurious. You'll spend under $ 200 but completely change the feel of the room. You can also replace the bathtub hardware with a beautiful, retro faucet. Adding items such as a towel warmer can also make the space more welcoming and enjoyable on those cold mornings. Remember, it's all up to you. Changing bath hardware is all about personal taste and is a simple way to recreate the bathroom for yourself. …

Functional Home Accessories – Room by Room

There are certain items in your home which are not there because they are beautiful, or inspiring. Instead they are there because they have a function that makes living in that space more comfortable, or easier, or better in any way. While these items are generally chosen for their capabilities, the modern world has produced a world of design, and many of these common functional pieces are available in a wide variety of unique and fascinating designs, allowing you to take the mundane world and dress it up.


The kitchen is one place where function wins out over form. However every item in the kitchen can contribute to the decorative beauty of the space.

One common strategy is to purchase all of your appliances in matched materials, such as brushed nickel, copper, or the popular stainless steal. This gives the room a stylish and integrated look.

Color themes are also popular in the kitchen, with a variety of functional items all matched by tone or even pattern, depending on how far you look for integrated sets.


Most bathrooms are small, and what space there is can often be taken up with these same functional accessories. Here too many people use a strategy of matching items to create an integrated look.

Soap dispensers, towel racks, trash cans, soap dishes, and even towel racks are all available in a variety of colors or patterns that will give you greater control over the look and feel of the space.

Towels, linens, even toilet cozies and area rugs are all interchangeable, and thius can be made to contrast or compliment one another throughout the space.

Living Rooms

The important decorative and functional pieces in this space will be large items such as couches, or coffee tables. It is important to pick these pieces carefully. If you are uncertain, purchase couches and tables which feature neutral colors. This will allow you to add decorative touches using smaller pieces.

Smaller functional accessories include ash trays, beverage coasters, magazines, coat racks, and garbage cans. These can be used to spread color throughout the space, or can be matched to create an interlaced latticework that will draw the space together.


The bedroom has one major function, that of sleep. However there are a variety of smaller, interchangeable accessories that are necessary for the function of the space, but which can also add color, and style to the room.

The most obvious and possibly the most visible of these items is the comforter. Large and in charge it stretches out across a wide expanse of space, and includes both elements of color and pattern, as well as textural features.

The small functional accessories that make our world livable are also the details that can make the world beautiful. Just because you are buying a garbage can, or an ash tray, doesn’t mean that you have to give up on inspiration. Look around, explore, and you will be surprised by the wide variety of unique designs available.…

Home Lighting – Creating Illusions with Window Treatments

Windows comes in all sizes, shapes and construction. You can create illusions using standard curtains or other window dressings available today. Long drapes are more formal, short curtains tend to be more casual. You can use different styles to add to your interior decorating, such as country, with wide tides and ruffles.

Curtains can help the following problems:

1. Small window – extend the rod beyond the window frame. This will create the appearance of a larger window. More light will filter through the opening.

2. Large window – Attach your rod in the normal position. Try using tiebacks on the curtains. Use a valance.

3. Short / Tall windows – For short windows attach your rod above the window frame. Taller windows will appear shorter if you use a draped valance. It will soften the window.

4. View – If your purpose is to hide the view, match the window color to your wall covering. It will reduce attention to the window.

Today there are so many choices – Vertical blinds, miniblinds, wood blinds, curtains, material and fabric shades, and shades of all types. You can keep it simple or layer the materials. Investigate the choices before you finish your room. If you give this some forethought, you can design your area to allow for changing window dressings each season. …

Review: Royal Caribbean’s Navigator of the Seas From Galveston

I had planned this cruise for seven months. A friend and I who had previously cruised with Carnival and Celebrity were eager to try Royal Caribbean after hearing so many positive things about the beauty of the ship, quality of food and service, etc. For the second time, I surprised my retired parents by taking them with us (the previous year I had surprised them with an Alaskan cruise which I will review later), and they were absolutely giddy with excitement when they found out that they would once again be traveling aboard Royal Caribbean’s Navigator of the Seas, which they claimed was their favorite ship of 13 other cruises they had taken. With the ship fresh out of dry dock for upgrades, were set to go to some brand-new destinations none of us had ever visited: Roatan Island, Honduras and Belize City. Expectations were high.

Then cruise time came. While I am not prepared to say that we had a BAD time on this cruise, I think it is fair to say that our expectations were a bit deflated, pretty much from the minute we arrived at the Port of Galveston. Allow me to take you through the high and low lights of life on the high seas aboard Navigator of the Seas.

The Highs

Our dining experience– Most definitely the best service we received on the ship was in the main Sapphire Dining Room, which is without a doubt the most gorgeous dining room I have seen on a cruise ship. Walking into the dining room is like entering a regal opera house complete with grand stair case and three levels of dining with windows on each side. Our two servers were extremely attentive, noting my step-mother’s preference of making her own ice tea with two glasses of ice, 2 tea bags and some hot water, which was waiting for her every night after night one. I could fault her for being a “tea snob,” but then I’d have to look at myself in the mirror with my Starbucks in hand turning my nose up at Folgers. All of us enjoyed the variety of meal choices and thought the food was of very high quality, with service running like clock work. It was truly a pleasure to dine each evening.

Here we are at dinner. I am the goof-ball in blue.

The Cabin– Inside cabin 7667 (Aft Port) was home sweet home for our week at sea. My parents were right next door in 7669. For an inside cabin, there was plenty of room to stow all of our stuff and have a completely clear space to move in. I would say the bed was a bit hard, but it’s all about your preference as my friend and traveling partner Jay (the guy in purple) said his was just right. Ample closet and drawer space allowed us to each have sufficient space to unpack. Our steward service was also top-notch, re-stocking and tidying up twice daily.

The ship– …