IN Sewickley Spring 2022 - Page 28

For entertaining , the outdoor kitchen offers a way to spend time with your guests while preparing the meal . There ’ s also an entire line of in-ground sound equipment and specially made outdoor TVs . The televisions are completely waterproof and three times as bright as a normal TV , so they can be viewed even in strong direct sunlight .
Are you one of those lucky individuals able to work from home ? The world just seems like a nicer place when you ’ re dressed in your pajamas , doesn ’ t it ? But work is still work . You need a place that ’ s organized , designed well , and in which you feel comfortable . Chances are , you may also need a degree of privacy to do your best work .
One of the most overlooked factors in productivity is lighting . Many studies demonstrate that natural lighting is best whenever possible , and results in more productivity among workers and a more positive attitude toward the work itself . Lighting can have a profound effect on your mood and can even influence your hormones . A good overview of this subject is provided by Andrew Jensen , a business growth , efficiency and marketing consultant , at andrewjensen . net .
If placing your home office in an area with windows is not possible , try the soft lighting of a lamp instead , and try to avoid harsh fluorescents . Adding a silk plant or two , along with a picture of the outdoors , will help transform a windowless area into a more inviting space . Warm colors such as reds , yellows and orange will also help warm up an otherwise dark office area such as a basement .
Next , you ’ ll want to design your workspace with cabinetry where office supplies and files can be tucked neatly out of sight . Shelving that is custom-designed for the way you work can transform even a tiny space into an efficient work area . Having cabinets and shelves that are suited to your exact purpose will eliminate a great deal of frustration and overwhelming feelings of disorganization . A designer and expert carpenter can help you get the most from your workspace .
Just because you don ’ t have an entire room in your house to dedicate to your home office doesn ’ t mean you can ’ t have a dedicated workspace . Even a closet can be transformed with the right planning , and the whole office can be put away at day ’ s end by simply closing the closet door .
If you have even less space to work with , try a wall-mounted desk that can be extended when in use and collapsed flush with the wall when it ’ s not . Cubby holes built into the interior wall area can provide places for storage in a tight space . A creative builder can help you make the most of your available space .
If your work area is not separated from the rest of your home and building a wall is not an option , there are still attractive ways to define your space . For example , tall wooden shutters can be linked together with hinges and painted any color to create a private area . Though not soundproof , this can create an intimate atmosphere of privacy when needed for oneself or seeing clients . Tall silk plants , such as a series of ficus trees , can also be used to divide the space .
Don ’ t skimp on your office chair ! It ’ s likely a place where you will be sitting for several hours every single day . Make sure it ’ s comfortable and provides plenty of lumbar support , in addition to being an attractive addition to your office . Visit spine-health . com for some helpful suggestions on choosing the right chair that will work best for you .
Though your bathroom may not spring to mind as the place to hold your next cocktail party , with the right accoutrements your bath can be a great place to hang out and enjoy life . And if you live with family members , it may be the only place in your house where you can truly be alone for a bit .
Besides just being a place to “ get ready ” to meet the day , it ’ s also a relaxing space to recharge your batteries after a long week at work . Hydrotherapy is one of the best ways to relieve stress and help tired , overworked muscles . With tons of specialized showerheads , you can have everything from the sprinkle of a gentle rain to an invigorating massage to bring your body back to center . And a nice relaxing bath in a soaker tub can make the world go away for a while .
Does all of this sound like a fantasy ? Maybe not . According to designer Mary Laipple , Director of the Kitchen and Bath Design Studio at 84 Lumber , you may be able to make updates to your bath for less than you might expect .
“ If a homeowner is just updating and not moving plumbing , heating ducts and electricity , the makeover can start at around $ 10,000 ,” says Laipple . And the choices for today ’ s bath are incredibly enticing . She notes that many homeowners are opting for larger showers that will not only get you clean , but can also bathe you in LED lighting that changes colors to suit your mood . You can also enjoy your favorite music in the shower to either calm you down after a stressful day , or pep you up for the daily routine .
Vanities and bath cabinetry have also arrived in the 21st century . Vanities are no longer empty-shell cabinets that open to a cavernous interior with little customization . Current options for drawers and cabinets include specialized areas for storing your blow dryer neatly away and stackable storage options for makeup . And while you ’ re standing in front of that vanity applying your makeup , you can watch TV in the mirror ! Technology allows your favorite TV program to be projected onto the mirror , so you can keep up with the latest baseball scores or check the weather before going out .
Slate and marble tile are always elegant options for bathrooms , but one of the trends in baths are porcelain tiles that mimic wood . These tiles come in sizes up to 48 ” and can be laid to look like natural woodgrain , without the worry of water damage . The woodgrain appearance really warms up the bathroom .
And speaking of warm – your toilet can be warm too ! Homeowners can opt for a “ throne ” with a retractable base that comes out and heats your feet as well as the seat of the toilet . And touchless flushing helps prevent the spread of germs among your family , along with a bidet , which ensures a much cleaner experience .
You spend so much time in your bathroom every day you owe it to yourself to make it a more enjoyable place . And , according to
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