If you have a wall in your apartment or home that's in bad need of attention - it's looking tired, it's had the same look forever - we came across this fast and easy solution from Rebecca Robertson, former Design Director at Martha Stewart Living. In this one-minute tip video from Apartment Therapy, Rebecca shows you ideas for using inexpensive job ticket holders from a local office goods store to create a flexible, easy-to-change display for family photos, children's artwork, prints, and other do-it-yourself visuals.
With the summer season in full swing, people around the country are taking to the outdoors. From backyard BBQs to rooftop bars, it's important to keep outdoor furniture looking fresh. As a leading manufacturer of outdoor luxury furnishings, Royal Botania knows a thing or two about proper care and cleaning techniques. Its catalog of products offers a diverse range of materials including teak stainless steel, Batyline and CoaXXS®. As the pool parties begin, the experts weigh in.
Teak is strong, lightweight, and resistant to outdoor elements. It has naturally high oil content, which creates a built-in resistance to the elements so that it does not decay and will not splinter. As such, teak does not need to be sealed or treated to protect the wood. When left outdoors, it will gracefully turn to silver patina to harmonize with its surroundings. Royal Botania uses mature, high quality, kiln-dried teak that has been harvested from sustainable sources. Available in collections such as Solid, O-Zon & Kokoon, it should provide a lifetime of use with minimal maintenance.
To keep teak looking chic, Royal Botania recommends a freshening every 6-12 months. When teak furniture first arrives any “teak dust” on the furniture should be wiped off using a damp cloth, otherwise it can leave marks on clothes and cushions. For standard cleanings, scrub with a soft brush and natural soap. Rinsing with fresh water regularly is also encouraged. Many stains can be removed by using a diluted bleach mixture with water, in a 4:1 mix. Scrub with a soft brush and rinse with fresh water. Do not fear a change in color of the stained area. Thanks to teak’s natural oil content the wood’s color will even out within a month after cleaning. For frequent stains, use products like Semco Clear Coat.
Stainless steel, featured in O-Zon, Ninix & Flexy, is durable and stylish and will hold up to frequent cleanings. Royal Botania offers a 304-grade as well as a 304-EP electropolished or marine-grade stainless steel. The latter offers the same quality and performance as 316-EP stainless steel, yet comes at a more affordable price point. This treatment increases resistance to corrosion and helps prevent salt water and chlorine damage.
To maintain its luster, Royal Botania recommends regular washings using fresh water at a high hose frequency. For a deeper clean, the company suggests a mix of baking soda and dish soap or some white vinegar. Towel dry and voilà!
Batyline is an extremely flexible, high quality and durable material that is nearly impossible to tear. It consists of a polyester fiber covered by a coating of PVC. Mildew and UV resistant, it is a great alternative to cushions and perfect for outdoor use in wet environments like a swimming pool. Equipped with a 3-year warranty, the material is part of Royal Botania’s most popular collections including: Alusion, E-Z, Kokoon & Mixt.
To clean the Batyline, Royal Botania recommends simply washing it with a mild natural soap and fresh water then rinsing and dry with a cloth.
Its exceptionally strong weave and composition make this an all-weather material. It will not loose its suppleness in low temperatures and will not feel sticky on the skin in hot. It is resistant to the damaging effects of chlorine and salt water, stretching or cracking, UV rays and stains from suntan or the locations. Royal Botania’s Sunday collection features CoaXXS®hand-woven over an aluminum frame.
To freshen up synthetic fiber,Royal Botania recommends washing with natural-based soap and a sponge then rinsing with fresh water. Plus, CoaXXS®only needs to be cleaned once a year! To avoid scratches, do not clean using any type of abrasive agent or scouring pad.
For more helpful hints, follow Royal Botania on facebook and twitter @royalbotania.
About Royal Botania, a Belgium-based manufacturer of luxury outdoor furniture and accessories, combines aesthetic sensibility and precise functionality in each and every product it offers. Founded by engineers Kris Van Puyvelde and Frank Boschman in 1992, it has earned an international reputation for technical refinement and design originality. Serious about ergonomics as well, its chairs and loungers offer the maximum in spinal support and comfort. At Royal Botania qualityremains the primary focus from creation, through production, distribution and including after-sales service. In 20 years, they have grown to employ 800 people worldwide, producing furniture in solid teak, stainless steel and aluminum, along with bathroom furniture and outdoor lighting collections. Additional modern garden furniture collections for the US can all be found on their website or in their New York showroom at 394 Broadway.
About D’Apostrophe: Located at 394 Broadway in New York City’s SoHo design district, d’apostrophe represents a discerning list of high-end Belgian manufacturers and brands including: Royal Botania, Limited Edition, .MGX by Materialise, Wildspirit, XL Boom, Bulo, Interni-edition, Atelier Vierkant Feld, kristalia, casamania and buzzispace. To the trade, the 6000 square foot showroom is a destination for architects and designers seeking design-focused, residential and commercial furnishings suitable for use both indoors and out.
Janet Ramin - When I was little, I dreamed in tangerine – maybe the deep orange painted wall across my bed had something to do with it but now finally the world has caught up! Pantone has declared Tangerine Tango the color for the year 2012 - and not a moment too soon! Its power may just block out a little of the world’s woes. Tangerine Tango is a deep reddish orange, full of pop and vibrancy, a little like that child in all of us. Below are a few samples of tangerine furnishings.
We have a wonderful geometric pattern in tangerine from Z Gallerie called Geo Bedding, great for those sweet dreams. Below is a bold graphic rug in shades of orange and rust from Foreign Assets.
Provide a little groovy mood in your pad with the following tangerine furniture: an enameled coffee table with cutouts of birds in flight and acrylic chairs. The Ice Chair is designed by Calligaris and all are available from All Modern.
What's that orange flying object? It's the Fly Fly pendant light from Foscarini, ready to swoop in and provide ambient light for the hip room. Group a variety of glass vases and bottles of different sizes and shapes and you have a dramatic statement. As in our first photo above and in the photo below - we have beautiful tangerine glassware from End of History. They have genie bottles, flower vases, perfume bottles, stemware, all designed and hand-blown from glass artisans.
For your wall decor, try the Fizz clock below from Chiasso. The tangerine bubbles will bring a little effervescence to your home style.
Reprinted with permission of the Sheffield School. Interested in learning how to accessorize a room? Take a look at Sheffield School's Complete Course in Interior Design. At Sheffield, you will learn how to transform a space, create color schemes, and select furniture, lighting, and accessories.
The gorgeous dress, the blooming bouquets, the first dance, the “I Do”s … when couples dream of their wedding day, they envision all the beauty and happiness their hearts can handle. What can bring them back to reality? The cold, hard foundation of event planning: the budget.
Weddings are notoriously expensive, for various reasons (some fair, some quite the opposite). As for budget, well, even the word is ugly. But the wedding budget is the most important governing document, and creating and maintaining the budget is a primary task of planning a wedding.
Creating the wedding budget can be difficult. Couples traditionally receive money from their families; increasingly they are footing their own bills. Regardless, many couples still do not know how much they have to spend, and have even less of an idea of what the wedding might cost. In this case, the total budget has to be calculated backwards by estimating or pricing the wedding expenses and then totaling those costs. Once the big picture is established, it is easy to trim the budget and manage expenses – and when it comes to savings, the target is on the biggest ticket items.
An excellent way to begin the budget process is to ask a simple question: what matters most? Another way to ask is: what do you think makes for a great party? Perhaps it is food, perhaps drinks. Maybe the couple is passionate about live music; maybe they just want to dance all night in a club-like scene. Atmosphere, flowers, gorgeous attire, decorations: each item has a price. Unless their funds are truly limitless, every couple will face hard choices about what they can and cannot afford, so it’s vital to establish priorities at the outset.
The most surprising budget item for most couples is the staggering expense of the venue and the catering. As with any party, it simply costs a lot of money to feed and provide drinks for a lot of people – a cost which accounts for approximately 40-50% of the overall budget. Nearly half! Of the average wedding cost of about $30,000, approximately $12,000 - $15,000 is for catering alone. While catering costs vary across the country, they can easily reach $150 or more per person in major cities.
Despite the large cost, brides and grooms should not make the mistake of skimping too much on the catering budget. Guests expect food at the reception, particularly at an evening reception when a full dinner must be served. How can the catering costs be efficiently pruned? One way is to reconsider cocktail hour. Passed hors d’oeuvres can be expensive, so many caterers offer alternatives such as unmanned stations. Beer and wine in lieu of a full bar (never a cash bar if it’s avoidable) is perfectly acceptable and can save a bundle. Offering fewer entrée choices also cuts costs, as the caterer has fewer dishes to make and ingredients to purchase.
If the budget needs to be cut drastically, couples should consider the timing of the ceremony and reception. A mid-day event allows for a lighter meal at considerably lower costs, particularly if the venue or caterer can do another event in the evening. Even larger savings are possible if the wedding is on a Friday, Sunday, or weekday instead of a Saturday. In fact, couples who opt for a non-Saturday wedding will enjoy cheaper costs all around. Finally, the simplest way to cut catering costs is also the hardest: cut the guest list. At $100 a head, cutting just ten guests saves $1,000.00.
The venue or location of the reception is another potentially large expense. If the venue provides catering then the rental cost of the space is often included in the package, with little way to get around it. If the venue rental is separate, it is vital to review what is included in the cost. Simple logistics can render a dream location into a very expensive nightmare. Chairs, tables, tenting, power, additional restrooms, transportation, and so forth – these and several other costs depend entirely on the venue.
Décor, and especially flowers, is another big ticket item of any wedding. With their inherent connotations of beauty and romance, flowers are de rigueur at most weddings and – like catering for a large party – something that most couples never deal with in their regular lives.
Ways to save money on wedding flowers? Be flexible. In-season, local blooms are significantly less expensive because they don't have the added cost of shipping and special care. In fact, the difference between the cost of in-season flowers and the alternative is so significant that if flowers are truly important to the couple, then they should consider that when they select their wedding date. It's not a fluke that so many weddings are in May and June when flower season is at its most varied and robust (of course the wedding industry has caught on, and early summer is now the most expensive time of year to be married).
Other ways to save? Use a good florist who sticks within a budget and can advise on the best blooms and quantities needed. Finally, the couple should consider which flowers matter most to them. The bouquet is often a keepsake, but what about the centerpieces? Most of those end up in the trash by the next day.
For décor bang for your buck, few things have as much impact as lighting. Surprised? Don’t be. Special lighting – whether it is colored washes on the walls or simple string lights and candles – entirely transforms a space and instantly creates a mood. Dramatic lighting also minimizes the need for other big décor elements. Single flowers in bud vases and votive candles on the table are plenty in a room filled with colorful paper Chinese lanterns.
Many couples will try to save money by having friends or family perform services in lieu of professional vendors. This can be fine – as long as the friend or family member has some equivalent experience and is reliable. An aunt who loves to bake may not be up to the task of creating a three tier, intricately decorated cake, especially under the time constraints required by a wedding. Etiquette and family politics can be complicated, but couples must make the choice based on what matters to them. If Auntie wants to make the cake and the bride and groom don’t care about the cake (and could stomach disaster), then why not?
There are a handful of other vendors where skimping is ill-advised, such as the photographer. Wedding photography can be expensive, but most couples agree that the expense is beyond worthwhile. The photographer is creating the best record of the event – one that will last well beyond the fading of the memories – and there is NO chance to recapture those moments. It's a very bad idea to ask a guest to act as photographer, even if they offer or have some talent. Not only would they rather be celebrating, but they cannot be truly objective about who or what they photograph. Professional photographers understand budgets and typically offer different packages and price points; it's worth negotiating with a photographer rather than deciding the pictures can be handled by your cousin Louise.
Catering, location, décor, and photography are some of the biggest expenses of any wedding budget, but they can be managed. Couples must start the budget process with a clear understanding of what truly matters to them to make a special and memorable day, and keep this focus in mind. Armed with those priorities and a little creativity, the budget process can be easy. And the wedding? Perfectly well-priced.
This article was reprinted with the permission of the Sheffield School. Are you interested in planning weddings and advising brides on their wedding budgets? The Sheffield Wedding & Event Planning course teaches everything you need to know to orchestrate a memorable event, from creating a guest list to hiring vendors to creating a beautiful wedding design.