Monday, 24 September 2012

Examining Modern Bathroom Safety Features

Whether you’re a family with young children, someone will limited mobility or simply someone looking for peace of mind, we all want to know that our homes are safe and secure environments in which we needn’t worry about accidental injuries or unanticipated dangers. To examine the domestic bathroom, let’s have a look at some of the modern safety features that make it a safer place than it has ever been before.

Modern shower can now be purchased with thermostatic temperature controls, which mean that you can manipulate the temperature and flow rate of your shower with accuracy and assurance. Ceramic disc technology in modern taps and mixers also means that they are easier to operate, more efficient and longer lasting than ever before. Anti-scald mechanisms can also now be installed that ensure that your water cannot go over a certain temperature: Ideal for households with young children.

Toilet seats, of course, have been able to have child-proof catches on them for several years now, but new soft-close toilets mean that no small child need risk trapping their fingers again. A similar idea is soft-close doors and drawers incorporated into bathroom furniture: The final inch or so of the closing area will slowly roll itself shut, eliminating the possibility of an accidental slam.

Replacing your bathroom mirror with a mirrored cabinet not only makes good sense for storage and organisational purposes, but provides somewhere to store any medicines and supplements out of the reach of curious young fingers.

Fitted bathroom furniture another great storage option, has a couple of key safety benefits other than soft-close doors. As fitted units, there is no possibility of the furniture falling over or collapsing, and nature of the design will mean that plumbing and pipework is covered up, preventing any accidental contact with hot pipes.

Of course in shower-baths and wet rooms it is essential to have some sort of non-slip flooring in place. Adhesive strips attached to the floor, or a secure mat should be sufficient, but you also have the option of installing grab bars and a shower seat if the shower will be used by anyone who may have trouble standing unassisted for extended periods.

With all of these technological developments in bathroom safety, there does not need to be cause for concern any longer. And the best part is that these changes have all been made with the overall aesthetic of the bathroom in mind, so you can now have a safe, secure, easy to use bathroom, that hasn’t had to sacrifice style over function in any way.

Monday, 17 September 2012

Light versus Dark: The Wooden Bathroom Furniture Debate

In my day to day work, it’s really important that I stay on top of all the latest trends and developments in bathroom design. Fortunately I love nothing more than exploring all the weird and wonderful, chic and cutting edge style ideas from around the world.

One idea that started gaining traction a couple of years ago and then went from strength to strength is installing bathroom furniture as a solution to the storage problems created be the minimalist décor that has been so popular in recent years.

While bathrooms with minimal furnishings and a stripped back design can look really stylish and modern, we do all tend to accumulate cosmetics and toiletries over time that require somewhere to go. The resurgent popularity of bathroom cabinetry has provided a timely and image-conscious solution to this problem.
Fitted furniture around your bathroom is the least intrusive way to create storage space without losing too much floor area. A fitted vanity unit beneath your basin, a vanity connecting both basin and toilet, or wall-hung cabinets will provide ample space to stow away all of your daily essentials, whilst only occupying space that would ordinarily go unused.

New bathroom furniture manufacturing techniques have meant that the variety of available styles and finishes is increasing hugely year on year. Should you wish to keep your current wall colours or overall décor, then you will be able to find furniture to perfectly complement it. Alternatively, if the budget and desire, then creating a new bathroom design, based around a few key pieces of quality furniture is a great way to refresh the look and feel of your bathroom.

Where finish is concerned, one the most popular and stylistically powerful options is natural wood tones. As many bathrooms in the UK are not blessed with generous dimensions, many people opt for light or walls to increase the sensation of light and space in their bathrooms. To help to reinforce this effect with furniture, lighter natural tones, such as oak and pine, can keep your bathroom feeling light and airy, whilst adding some much needed texture and warmth to what can appear to be a slightly sterile environment at times.

To head in the opposite direction though, can be just as rewarding. Dark woods, such as walnut or wenge, will bring an air of rich solidity to your bathroom. Bold, darker hues will lend a luxurious air and a feeling of permanence to your bathroom design. Of course, laminate and coloured finishes are available as well, and you always have the option to personalise your bathroom furniture once it is installed, with stencilling or sanding to create a distressed antique finish.

The options and variations are endless, so the key is to research and plan thoroughly and to learn what it is that you truly want to achieve from your bathroom. You can make it happen, so start clicking through your options!

Monday, 10 September 2012

Adding Re-Sale Value With a Budget Bathroom Upgrade

Hi everybody. I’ve had a couple of people on Twitter asking for advice on the best way to revamp a bathroom in order to increase their chances of selling a house. Well, the good news is that it is a relatively pain free process to give your bathroom a new lease of life and make it far more attractive to potential buyers.

A recent survey found that 56% of people viewing a property would immediately write it off if the bathroom was dirty, so let’s get that one crossed off straight away. Grouting can be spruced up with a toothbrush and a little hydrogen peroxide (make sure you have your Marigolds on!) and the waterproof sealant around your basin or bath can be replaced for just a few pounds and only requires 24 hours to dry. A new coat of paint is another simple and quick way to make a real difference. Keep it simple; white paint or a pastel shade will keep the room feeling light, fresh and airy, and help increase the feeling of space in the room.

In keeping with the space-increasing properties of fresh paint, make sure you have a decent sized mirror to amplify the effect. Many bathroom furniture manufacturers are now creating stylish illuminated mirrors at affordable prices. Not only will this make the room seem larger, but it’s a simple way to really modernise your bathroom and give it a designer feel. Remember, you are selling a lifestyle, not just a purely functional space.

So now you have a bright, airy and well-lit space, don’t allow yourself to clutter it up with multi-coloured and distracting toiletries and bathroom products. We all need our cosmetics and daily essentials, but having everything out on display will make the room feel busy and uncared for. Fortunately, the solution to that problem is as practical as it is stylish. Bathroom furniture is making a real comeback at the moment, and just a couple of well-placed cabinets can make a huge difference in achieving a serene and streamlined end result.

A vanity unit installed beneath your basin will allow you keep everything you need neatly tidied away but remain within easy reach, and with fewer items around the basin, house viewers will be able to project their own use of the bathroom more easily. One option I highly recommend is to install a vanity unit with a counter top basin. This small change will immediately lend your bathroom a luxurious, designer quality without major plumbing work being required. Bear I mind, too, that fitted cabinets can contain and hide pipes and plumbing work, resulting in a neater overall appearance.

It can be a costly and inconvenient process to replace an entire bathroom suite, so as long as your existing suite isn’t a radioactive shade of avocado, then a thorough scrub will usually suffice. A clever way to update your bathroom suite, however, is to install new taps and wastes. Using the same tap holes you already have, this is a subtle change that can alter he atmosphere of a room and instantly provide a more sophisticated and opulent air.

So there we have it: New taps, a high quality mirror, those de-cluttering cabinets, a lick of paint and a thorough clean. Piece of cake. A bathroom that any potential buyer would want, without an enormous outlay. Let me know how it goes!

Monday, 3 September 2012

Searching For Style in the Sales

The August bank holiday weekend means the same thing to many of us; end of summer sales. So now is the time to get out and about, or searching around the web, to find your next home improvement bargains while you can.
There are so many different sales available at present as new styles and ranges are introduced by bathroom design companies and suppliers, so this a really exciting time of year to begin planning and plotting your new-look bathroom. You know, the one you’ve been promising yourself and putting off for years!

Planning a new bathroom can be a daunting prospect; it can feel like a marathon task. But remember, there are a few quick and easy options to give your bathroom a new lease of life without needing a JCB or a million pound budget. The key to any new design project is to plan carefully and thoroughly. What are your specific requirements and needs? What are your limitations regarding space and budget?

So, those and quick and easy options I mentioned. Well, make sure you’re giving yourself a good foundation on which to build. A new coat of paint in a fresh, bright white and some new or cleaned up grouting and sealant will take years off the appearance of any bathroom. An easy and cost-effective starting point to get the ball rolling.

Next, examine your furnishings. Are they still functioning correctly and in an acceptable state of repair? If so, there may be no immediate need to install a new basin or bath. However, a great way to update the feel of your bathroom furnishings, to make your bathroom appear more modern and stylish, is to install new taps and wastes (plug-hole covers). There are a huge number of models and styles available, so you will be able to find a design that you love for a price you can afford. Modern taps can add real glamour to a bathroom, and you should usually be able to install them into your existing tap-holes, but be sure to check all relevant dimensions beforehand. New taps will also usually come with guarantees of quality and a longer life-span than older models.

One of my absolute favourite bathroom design ideas of recent years has been the reintroduction of cabinets and furniture to the bathroom. Bathroom furniture designers and suppliers have rediscovered the practical and stylistic applications of bathroom furniture, and suddenly hundreds of new combinations of designs, finishes and materials have become available.

A few well-selected storage units, such as a vanity unit built in beneath a basin, or a stand-alone rack of shelving will instantly help de-clutter and streamline your bathroom. This will allow you to keep your essential bottles and supplies whilst retaining a calm, peaceful and clean appearance.

With such a variety of high quality and affordable bathroom furniture now available, the best option is to have a good luck at a number of different styles and finishes, from painted woods to natural finishes, then cross reference your preferred models with your sizing requirements. This really is a wonderful way to transform your bathroom, to simultaneously add storage space and style.

Happy Hunting!