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Category: Home & Garden

  1. How to easily transform your walls (without traditional wallpaper or paint)

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    How to easily transform your walls (without traditional wallpaper or paint)

    At the moment all our walls are painted white.  We moved into our home three years ago and eagerly set about making the space our own.  The house was tired and worn with different coloured paint in every room, along with different coloured carpets.  We wanted a blank canvas as a starting point so stripped everything out and painted everything white.  I do love the fresh and clean appeal of the white, but in some rooms I’d love to go a little crazy and have a feature wall. 

    Problem is, the thought of wallpapering slightly terrifies me.  I can imagine a scene of me all curled up in thick wallpaper with glue everywhere and a crumpled up mess on the walls.  Ben comes home from work and has to rescue me type scenario.  I also can’t stand painting, isn’t it a bore?  I start with great intentions, but I quickly get bored and start sloshing it all over the place trying to get through it as quickly as possible.  Thankfully transforming your living space no longer has to turn you into a sticky mess or take hours on end with a paintbrush.  Phew! 

    Here are three alternative ways to decorate your walls (without using traditional wallpaper or paint):

    How to easily transform your walls (without traditional wallpaper or paint)

    Reusable wallpaper

    There are companies such as Pixers who sell wallpaper created with an innovative adhesive called Pixerstick which is reusable.  Yes, you heard me correctly, it’s reusable!  This means you can easily apply it to your walls by yourself and then unstick and apply it again until it is absolutely perfect.  Doesn’t that make wallpapering sound so much more bearable?!

    It’s also resistant to tearing and creasing, so that’s another two things to cross off your wallpapering worry list.

    How to easily transform your walls (without traditional wallpaper or paint) 

    Wall murals

    One thing I’ve mentioned before in my blog that I love is wall murals.  Ever since a friend had a huge photographic wall mural in her dining room of trees in a forest, I’ve been a bit obsessed.  It was awesome.  Before this I’d never seen one in an actual home, so never knew how great they could look. I’ve so many ideas for wall murals in my home from a botanical wall in my office, a magical castle in Bella’s bedroom, a tranquil beach scene in the bathroom to an enchanted forest in the playroom; the possibilities really are endless.  Plus you can even upload your own designs or photos and have something unique to you.

    How to easily transform your walls (without traditional wallpaper or paint)


    Creating an entire wall mural can seem a little scary at first.  Especially for people like us who are used to plain, bare white walls.  To ease us in, Pixers have the perfect solution with fully customisable furniture stickers.  These stickers can be ordered to size to cover any surface you desire.  Easily update your wardrobe doors, fridge, chest of drawers, children’s toy box or if you want to start smaller why not cover your laptop in a creative pattern?

    I’m so thrilled there is now more choice than the bog standard wallpapers of yesterday and a tin of paint to decorate walls.  Have you tried reusable wallpaper yet or even braved it with a wall mural?  Let me know in the comments!

    Related blog posts:
    6 Easy Ways to Decorate a Dining Room
    Decorate Your Home Office for Fresh Blogs and Inspiration
    Quiz: Which Interior Design Trend Suits You Most?

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  2. Top 5 Cleaning Tips for Mattresses

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    Top 5 Cleaning Tips for Mattresses

    Keeping your mattress dust and bug-free is essential for your own comfort and for a good night’s sleep too. So how can you ensure that your mattress is squeaky clean?

    A clean bed is more than just washing your bedding. From time to time, the bed frame and mattress itself need to be given a thorough clean too.

    Sloane and Sons are on the blog today to share their top 5 cleaning tips for mattresses:

    Top 5 Cleaning Tips for Mattresses

    Tip 1 – Vacuum

    Dust and dead skin flakes may not be the most pleasant thing to think about but vacuuming your mattress regularly reduces air-borne dust and other detritus. This can lead to sneezing, sore eyes, coughs and in extreme cases, aggravate asthma and some skin conditions too.

    The easiest, simplest and quickest way of tackling dust, dead skin flakes and so on is to use the upholstery tool on your vacuum and give the mattress a good vacuum. Use the thinner nozzle for getting into corners and seams, the places where dust and other detritus collects. Remove the mattress and vacuum the bed frame or divan base too.

    How often? The frequency of ‘deep’ cleaning a mattress and bed is often a top discussion topic but when time is pressing, it can be tempting to put off it off until ‘next time’. Most experts agree that a quick vacuum fortnightly or one a month is sufficient to keep the mattress dust free but you should give your mattress and bed a deep clean every 3 months or so. All mattresses, including single mattresses, should be vacuumed regularly to ensure they are clean and dust-free too.

    Tip 2 – Zap Stains

    There are instances in which the mattress can pick up stains and to clean these away, a good quality upholstery stain remover spray will work a treat.

    Remove all bedding and give the mattress a thorough vacuum to remove dust. Use the spray as directed, being careful not to over scrub the upholstery as this may damage it.

    Not all upholstery sprays are suitable for all types of mattresses. Stains on memory foam, for example, are best tackled with hot, soapy water and gentle rubbing. Don’t over-saturate the mattress or it may not be dry in time for you to hop back in it later that day.

    Allow the mattress to dry and air naturally, rather than applying heat.

    Tip 3 – Tackle Odours

    From sweat to general ‘slept in’ odours, the mattress can pick up and hold on to less-than-pleasant aromas. This doesn’t mean you have to throw it away and buy a new one, however. After thoroughly vacuuming the mattress, try the following;

    • A dilute mix of disinfectant – there are various disinfectant products on the market, many of which have a smell other than pine! Dilute the disinfectant in warm water and wipe across the mattress or areas that harbour odours. Don’t over soak the mattress and allow to dry naturally. Repeat, if necessary.
    • Homemade solutions – sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda over the mattress and allow to sit for around 15 minutes or longer, if you have the time. The crystals help to trap odours in the surface and inside the mattress too. Vacuum up the soda to freshen your mattress.
    • Upholstery deodorising sprays – there are products that can help with odours on fabrics and materials but rather than being a cleaning agent, they simply mask the smell for a while. They can be helpful but always ensure you don’t over saturate the mattress and when you come to make the bed, that the mattress is completely dry.

    Tip 4 – Steam Cleaning

    This method may not be suitable for all mattress types. Always perform a test on a small area of the mattress first.

    Steam cleaning is a great way of getting fabrics and upholstery clean with nothing more than steam. Heat, of course, is great for cleaning because it kills germs and pathogens. In the case of mattresses, as well as dust mites you may be unlucky enough to share your mattress with bedbugs.

    If you suspect bedbugs, the best course of action is to call in a professional pest controller as unfortunately, bugs may be hiding in other places in the bedroom as well as your mattress. Give the mattress a thorough vacuum and then follow up with a steam cleaner.

    Allow the mattress to dry naturally but ensure that it is thoroughly dry before making the bed as dampness within the mattress can cause mould.

    Tip 5 – Air it!

    When you change the bed linen, allow the mattress time to breathe. In many European countries, the mattress and bedding, including duvets and pillows, are hung out over balconies in the sun to give them an airing.

    How do you keep your mattress clean? Let me know in the comments.

    Sloane and Sons have been providing memory foam and pocket sprung mattresses to customers all over the UK for nearly 20 years. A good night’s sleep makes all the difference to the quality of daily life.

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  3. Easily calculate and price your building work with Job Prices

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    Easily calculate and price your building work with Job Prices

    One of the biggest struggles we’ve faced, whilst doing up our home for three years, is not being familiar with the true cost of building work and home improvements.  Not knowing anyone personally in the trades we’ve needed, has meant we have to take the word of the builders who provide us with quotes.  With programmes like Cowboy Builders in the back of our minds, we’re always sceptical of what we’re told and whether we are being ripped off.  This is the first home we have bought and renovated so we feel very naïve and have nothing to compare anything to.  Luckily there is a brilliant UK based website called Job Prices who provide a comprehensive online guide into home improvement pricing.

    Easily calculate and price your building work with Job Prices (2)

    Although we are three years into doing up our home, our project list seems to keep growing!  My husband has his own list of plans to tackle next and I also have plenty of my own ideas!  Just some of the large projects include getting rid of artex in three rooms, converting the attic into a bedroom with ensuite, and a one storey extension to the back of the house.  Quite a lot to be getting on with! 

    Having no experience with any of these sorts of things, I really feel a builder could quote a sky rocket price and we’d just nod along.  It’s always best to get a few quotes from a few builders and to check out recommendations from friends and family, as well as reviews online.

    To make sure you know the sort of figure a home improvement project will cost and the region in which builders should be quoting, take a look at the home improvement price list at Job Prices.  With this valuable information at your fingertips, you won’t have to feel completely clueless when reaching out to tradesmen for quotes.  You’ll also know if they are trying to pull a fast one!

    Easily calculate and price your building work with Job Prices

    I’ve been having a browse of the website for our own projects and feel it’s a valuable resource.  We never got the artex in our home removed when we moved in, or covered, as we thought it would be a very costly job.  We honestly had no clue on costs and would have guessed £1000+ which is quite a lot.  Using the website I can see overskimming one medium sized room may be around £250.  As we have just half a room to do plus two ceilings, this may actually be more affordable than we first thought.  Job Prices is a fantastic starting point to get an idea of the costs involved.

    There are also handy home improvement cost calculators, budget planning spreadsheets and useful articles such as 7 Surefire Ways to Increase The Value of a House.  If you’re planning any work to your home or garden I’d definitely recommend starting on this website.

    Do you have any upcoming home improvement projects this website could help you with?  Let me know in the comments!

    Related blog posts:
    Mistakes we’ve made with our renovation
    Things to remember when buying a ceramic sink
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