Archive for the ‘Kitchen Home Improvement’ Category

Wood Choices For Your Kitchen Cabinets

Sunday, August 4th, 2019

byAlma Abell

When the time has come for a kitchen renovation or upgrade, an easy way to create an entirely new look and feel to space is changing the material used in the cabinets. Many popular kinds of woods are available and commonly used on wood cabinet constructions, and each one delivers its own unique feel and vibe and flare. Here are a few key points that help you choose the wood cabinet material you would want to use on your kitchen cabinetry in Pittsburg homes or apartments:


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This is a hard and very durable wood which make sit great for holding up to the wear and tear of kitchen life. Maple offers softer texture and grain patterns that can be found in a fairly wide variety of colors including whites, reds, and browns.


Cabinets of Cherry wood often have deep rich colors and beautifully stunning grain patterns. These are cabinets that offer a beautiful accent point to any kitchen d├ęcor, and one unique factor for this type of wood is it holds its color well and is low maintenance compared to other woods.


Birch has long been a popular wood choice for a variety of furniture pieces because of its unique color and grain patter. Many new kitchen constructions and modern kitchen renovations use Birch wood for the cabinets and even the counter tops.


With a bold grain pattern, dark contrasting colors in the grain and a more rugged grain pattern, oak is by far the common wood for cabinet construction. As one of the hardest of the hardwoods oak is durable, and many find the array of red and brown hues to be very beautiful.

For expert help with choosing the wood for your kitchen cabinetry in Pittsburgh, contact Patete Kitchen & Bath Design Center today and let them put their years of experience to work for you!

Bringing Warmth To Your Home With A Faux Fireplace

Saturday, March 9th, 2019

By Alyssa Davis

A fireplace can certainly add a lot of warmth, comfort and beauty to a home. However, even if your home doesn’t have a fireplace, you can still create one that can become the focal point of any room. Constructing a faux fireplace can be a great way to add design interest, warmth and character. Here are a few great ideas you can use to add a faux fireplace to your own home.

Simple Fireplace Styles

It really doesn’t take much more than a few pieces of plywood, some ceramic or stone tile, and a few hand tools and screws to create a simple free-standing faux fireplace. First, measure the wall where you’d like to build your fireplace, and decide how large it should be. Once you have these measurements, construct a simple box out of plywood, taking care to create a standard sized opening in the front which will serve as the firebox opening. Connect the plywood pieces together with screws for added strength. Place it against the wall so that you can check that the size looks as you imagined it would in the room. Then, cut another piece of plywood to fit under the fireplace, which will serve as the hearth. You can paint the hearth if desired, or cover with tiles. Set the fireplace box that you constructed on the hearth board.

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To protect the hearth while you work, cover exposed surfaces with a plastic tarp. Then, cover the box exterior with stone or ceramic tile, using a suitable adhesive. When everything is dry, apply grout if needed. You can then install a wall mounted mantel over your new faux fireplace. Place a fireplace screen in front of the firebox opening to add a realistic touch. If desired, place a candle plate and short chunky candles inside the firebox. When lit, the candles will add the realistic look of flames to your fireplace. Of course, make sure that the candles are far enough away from any flammable surfaces to prevent fire hazards.

Decorating Your Faux Fireplace

To transform a simple faux fireplace into a beautiful focal point, you’ll need to add a few decorating details. Accessorize your mantel with a few decorative pieces. Candles, a few framed family photos, a couple of knick knacks or a potted flower or plant can add a nice touch. To add sparkle and beauty, hang a mirror over the mantel. Or, add a bit of color and visual interest by hanging a framed painting, art print or wreath over the fireplace.

A candle sconce hung on each side of the artwork or mirror can also add a nice touch. Lay a decorative area rug in front of the hearth to add a bit of authenticity, color and warmth. You can also add a realistic touch by displaying a set of fireplace tools off to one side. Arrange a couple of comfortable chairs nearby, and your room will have all the charm and beauty of a real fireplace – without the need to carry wood into the house.

About the Author: Writer Alyssa Davis offers advice on

wrought iron grilles


Southwestern wall decor



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Picnic At The Beach Easy Dinner Recipes And Dinner Ideas For Family Fun

Friday, November 2nd, 2018

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By Julie Languille

What could be better than a picnic at the beach for a family dinner outing? Sand in your toes, the roar of the ocean a walk on the beach, and a roaring fire to gather around. If you aren’t lucky enough to live near the ocean, a lake, pond, creek or fountain will do. Or simply put blankets down in the back yard. A few easy dinner recipes for a picnic at the beach then later when it gets dark you can do some star gazing.

What you need:

1) A place to go. Choose a local beach, preferably with fire pits or BBQs. One with a bit of shelter from the wind is ideal. It will keep the sand out of your food later.

2) Fire – a fire ring, BBQ, or create your own. You can bring a small portable BBQ or dig a pit and line it with stones. If you are making your own fire pit it is great to involve the whole faily in the digging, the hunt for stones and the search for firewood. It is a good idea to bring a grill to set on top of stones on your firepit. And i always bring some backup firewood in case the search for wood turns up less than an adequate supply.

3) Seating – a picnic bench, folding chairs or a huge old quilt or blanket are wonderful to sit on fireside. Bring several so as the day gets cooler you can all be near the fire and you can switch side s as the wind direction changes to avoid getting smoke on your eyes.

4) Games – It is a great idea to bring some games or toys to occupy the troops until dinner time. A bucket and shovel are classic beach toys and the basis of any good sand castle. It’s really amazing how the sand itself is entertaining for kids to play with. It’s like at Christmas when all the little kids love to play in the boxes and wrapping; take them to the beach and they love the sand. Of course later they’ll have it in every crevice, but that’s a price well worth paying for a good afternoon at the beach. Beach balls are another good choice as are Frisbees. Bring another bucket if you’ve got a shell collector. They’ll spend hours combing the beach for treasures. You can make a game of collecting sea shells and sea glass and have a craft day later where you turn your treasures into a craft such as decorated picture frames.

5) Camera – Since we may be making some decorated picture frames later with our collected shells, we may as well bring the camera and capture some sun and sand logged goofiness on film. I love a shot from the end of the day when everyone ir pink and sandy, tired and happy.

6) Safety – Be sure to have the safety discussion with kids early on. Depending on how many you have with you and what their ages are, there rules may vary, but each child should clearly know whether they are allowed in the water, and if so how deep. (To the knees? To the Belly button?) And if we are wandering the beach looking for shells, lets choose marker to show how far it is safe to go and whether you need to have someone come with you.

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7) Drying off – Bring loads of towels, preferably big beach towels. Bring more than you think you’ll need because someone always gets cold and wet when it is later in the day and beginning to get chilly.

8) Warm clothes – be sure to bring jackets for every one. Once the day turns cooler it is easy to get chilled. Bring something soft in case we’re gotten any sunburn.

9) Sunscreen – I hate to have to cut a great outing short becasue we didn’t plan well enough for sun exposure. Be sure it is water proof, plentiful and it is reapplied as needed.

10) Drinks! Be sure to have plenty of bottles of water on hand and well as fruit drinks for the kids and whatever the adults would like. Why not go with a beach theme and have some mai tais on the beach. They needn’t even be alcoholic to taste good, although a little rum add good flaover. Buy mai tai mix, orange juice, mango juice, pineapple juice and rum if desired and go to town. It’s extra point if you bring cute glasses (non breakable of course) and super extra credit for those little umbrellas.

11) Food! I bet you thought we never get there, but you know the food is the highlight of the day. Today we’re doing shrimp boil in foil; succulent tender shrimp, sweet summer corn and spicy sausage all grilled together in a foil packet. The are make ahead and kept in the cooler to pop on the fire when we’re ready. Also bring a loaf or garlic bread, all buttered and sliced and wrapped in foil to warm on the grill. For appetizers I like to do little smokey sausage links. Give everyone a weiner roasting stick or fashion them yourselves from coat hangers, spear a little smoky sausage and heat over the fire until sizzling. Careful though, they’re hot! Bring more than you think you’ll need because appetites get big with all that sun and activity. I’m convinced it makes the food taste better too! For dessert, it’s got to be s’mores. Bring marshmallows, roasting sticks, chocolate bars and graham crackers. Again bring more than you think you need to account marshmallows dropped in the sand, burnt like torches and hearty appetites!

Grilled Shrimp “Boil” in Foil

A shrimp boil is a traditional southern dish where shrimp, shellfish, sausage and corn are boiled together with Old Bay seasoning. This has all the good flavor, but is faster and easier to prepare in foil packets.

Serves 4

1 1/2 lb Shrimp – medium – peeled and deveined

1 lb Mussels

1 lb Clams

1/2 lb Kielbasa, sliced

2 Cobs of of corn, shucked

2 Tb Butter

1/4 C Water

1/4 C White wine

1 Tsp Old Bay seasoning


Preheat grill to medium high heat. Cut the corn into 1 inch rounds. Tear off 4 large sheets of foil and fold in half to double. Divide seafood, corn and sausage evenly among the packets, dot with butter, sprinkle on Old Bay, and 1 TB of both wine and water. Fold up with double folds to secure well. Grill packets about 10 minutes turning once until puffed. Empty each packet carefully into a bowl to serve.

About the Author: Julie Languille is a mom of 4 and the computer programmer who created Dinners in a Flash to solve meal planning challenges in her household. Today Dinners in Flash serves clients and offers access to over 2500 mouthwatering recipes. Visit Julie at



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E Decorating Is A New Affordable Way To Get A Professional Interior Design Scheme For Your Home

Wednesday, October 10th, 2018

We are all better educated about design than ever before, we know how we want to dress, where we want to eat and holiday, also due to the proliferation of TV design makeover shows and interior magazines we know what we aspire to in interior design, and how we’d like our homes to look.

E decorating brings interior design within the reach of everyone, no matter where you live, and no matter what your budget for new furnishings is. It combines all the benefits of the Internet with fixed price specific interior design advice that is personal to the client, their home and their family’s needs.

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An E Designer never visits her client but communicates through phone consultations, up loaded images and floor plans. The client has the advantage that all time spent on their scheme is good quality design time rather than travelling time to meet the client in their home. Some clients like the idea of the privacy E decorating offers as the designer doesn’t visit their home, which some clients find slightly intimidating. Other clients like the idea that they’re working to a fixed amount, both for the design fee and for the budget for the scheme. In all cases the client is assured that the scheme will be personal to the clients needs and will be the same high quality of design as a traditional designer would offer…The finished design, mood board, floor plan and swatches are then sent to the client so they can then order everything online at their convenience.

E decorating began in the USA where interior designers found it impossible to travel the vast distances sometimes necessary to reach their clients. E decorating is seen as a good quality alternative to traditional interior design. The client can have one room designed at a time and often the interior designer is happy to combine existing furnishings and treasures in the client’s scheme. The interior scheme is always personal to the clients needs.

Often designers find that E decorating is used to solve a design problem that the client may have, or as general design inspiration so that the client can get a clear idea of how the colours and textures and furnishings will work together in their room. A good interior designer will be a rich source of interior design ideas as well as knowing where to purchase items from and where to seek out the best value for money for her client.

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Are you looking for the interior design for your home at an affordable price. Then use an E decorating service and you will achieve a room you cant wait to live in.Author: Serena Woods

How To Create A Great Recreation Room In Your Home

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2018

By Stewart Wrighter

If you want a space where your family can gather, have fun, and enjoy time together, you should create a great recreation space everyone can share. The space should reflect the spirit of your family and it should be comfortable for everyone. You can set ground rules about what activities can happen in the space or you can just let everyone be themselves and enjoy it. When designing the space, it is important to consider how it will be used and how frequently you will be entertaining more than just your family. If you are making the space personal, you can do this with art and accessories. If everyone in your family loves a particular sports team, make that the theme of the room. Highlight the themed art with picture lights that attract attention to the theme. You can also use a picture light over a family photo and incorporate that into your decor.

Once the decor and theme of the room is set, bring in a big television. While some people may want to eliminate a TV from the family space, their desire will probably be met with quite a bit of resistance from family members. Instead of fighting about it and trying to get things perfect, let them have their way with the TV but set limits. If you are all gathered together enjoying a sporting event or television show, you are still spending time together. Just make sure everyone is interacting and that the time spent watching any program is still quality time together.

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Next, plan to play some games of your own in your recreation room. Consider adding a pool table or ping- pong table that will really get the kids excited. If there is no space for that, put together an area that is comfortable for playing board or card games. Take suggestions from family members for what games to play and how to enjoy your time together. The goal is to have fun and play games, so it really does not matter what games people choose, as long as everyone is having a good time.

Be sure there is plenty comfortable seating in the space. Nothing is worse than being forced to spend time in a stuffy, formal room, so make sure everyone can kick back and relax. Provide everyone with the ability to put their feet up, get warm and cozy, and settle in for a few hours of quality time together. Let rules that may apply to other rooms in your home go and allow people to enjoy popcorn and soda in the family space.

Finally, make the space even more comfortable and convenient for entertaining by tricking it out with a refrigerator, microwave, or bar. Creating a mini-kitchen in the recreation room is a great way to get people into the space and hanging out. If you plan to entertain beyond your immediate family, this is a great way to create a party room that everyone will enjoy. In no time at all, you will have the most popular recreation room in the neighborhood.

About the Author: Stewart Wrighter is an entrepreneur who runs a large group of websites that specialize in high end items such as picture lights. He offers a large variety of lights on his picture light site.


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Composting: Make Your Own Fertilizer And Reduce Trash

Sunday, August 6th, 2017

By Jena Luthovski

Composting for your home garden is a win-win situation. You get fertilizer for your garden without buying and hauling costly bags of fertilizer from the store. Your local landfill gets less trash. A good deal all the way around. Let’s say you’d like to get started composting but have questions like how long it will be before your compost is usable for fertilizer, and will it make your yard smelly to have a compost container there? What can I put in compost? Here are a few basics to get you started.

When deciding what can go in your compost heap, it is good to know how composting works. Basically, composting is the process of breaking down and decomposing materials. The key to composting for your lawn or garden is having the right mix of materials, air, and heat, so that this process is controlled. If the process is not controlled, you will end up with rotting or mold instead of usable compost. If you are composting at home, you can simply start a pile in the corner of your yard. You (and your neighbors) may find this unsightly however, and it also will break down very slowly, taking a year or more before you can use it. Using a compost bin, particularly one that allows you to rotate or move the material around, will not only contain your compost in a more attractive way, if used properly, it will help your compost break down faster and be usable sooner.

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For ideal composting to occur, you need the right mix of materials that contain carbon, and those that contain nitrogen. For home composting, your carbon materials may come mostly from your lawn, like dried leaves, while your nitrogen materials are more likely to come from your kitchen, like vegetable leaves. Compost will need to be moist, but not too wet or too dry. If you live in a particularly dry climate, or the weather is beginning to get colder, you may need to add some water to your compost pile. Your compost will also need air in order for the bacteria to operate optimally. Mixing your compost, or aerating it, occasionally will assist in this. Some compost containers have tumbler features and can just be turned. This is one easy technique that will make your compost degrade faster and be garden ready sooner.

About the Author: Jena Luthowski writes about Home Garden Coupons, Apple Trees and Popular Coupons.


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