Saturday, December 29, 2007

7 Tips For Choosing A Rocking Chair

by: Flor Buenaventura

Do you sometimes find yourself wishing that your favorite TV chair can also be a rocking chair? Is there a new baby in the family that you wish you can sing to sleep in your arms while sitting comfortably yourself? Does your idea of unwinding after a long day's work include reading a book by the fire in the winter or just contemplating the outside scenery in the summer?

American fondness for rocking chairs

If you answer yes to any one of these questions, then you are not alone. A growing number of Americans either own a rocking chair which has become a member of the family or think of buying one.

Rocking chairs began to appear in the late 1700s when someone ingeniously thought of adding skates or rockers to the bottoms of adult furniture, similar to a child's rocking cradle or rocking horse.

Since then, owning a rocking chair has become a distinctly American proccupation, with most Americans, including some of America's famous presidents, showing great fondness for their rocking chairs - whether they be the elegant American designer Sam Maloof creations with the elongated curved runners or the homely white wicker rocking chair that usually has been with the family for more than 30 years.

But how do you choose a good rocking chair. Below are some tips on how to choose a rocking chair that is right for you.

Tips on how to choose a rocking chair

1. The first thing to ask yourself is where are you going to put your rocking chair? If indoors by the fireplace or the family room, you can choose a cushioned or timber rocking chair made of light maple or yellowish oak. Or if outdoors in your garden or front porch, you can choose a sweetly-scented cedar, a painted brazilian cherry wood or teakwood durable enough to withstand the elements.

2. A very important priority in rocking chairs is comfort. Rocking chairs have been used for therapeutic purposes - John F Kennedy's rocking chair being a famous example. It is said that President Kennedy found hours and hours of relief for his bad back from this Appalachian oak rocker which has a steam-bent curved backrest and woven seat made of Malaysian rattan.

Answering the following questions may help you to judge whether the rocking chair you are choosing will give you the level of comfort that you need.

- Does the rocking chair provide seating comfort and support?

- Is the chair set low enough for comfortable elbow support?

- Are the armrests wide enough to rest your arms and provide the right balance?

- Do the seat and back offer both firmness and flexibility?

- Do the seats slant downward to fit the whole back while supporting the lower back?

3. Is the rocker pitched correctly? In layman's terms, does the rocking chair provide a smooth and even rocking motion without tipping, even when you are in the reclining position? Or does it feel like you are about to flip backwards when you are rocking? Does a single push keep the rocking chair rocking for a few minutes or does it stop after onlya few seconds?

4. Was the rocking chair constucted using techniques that have been proven to result in stronger and more durable rocking chairs that can withstand everyday use? Some of these techniques include construction without glue, interlocking joinery and the famous Maloof technique of using seven laminated strips of wood to strengthen each of the long, elegant skis that are used in his rocking chair designs.

5. What style of rocking chair will fit your decor? Do you want an upholstered rocking chair or do you want to see the timber's natural woodgrain enlivened by an oil finish? Do you want charming white wicker chair or casual rattan? How do you want your the back of your rocking chair - traditional ladder back horizontal slats, vertical slats or woven cane? Do you want it stained, oiled, varnished or painted?

6. How much do you want to spend for your rocking chair? Whatever your budget, there seems to be a rocking chair for everyone's fancy - whether its the $20,000 Sam Maloof with a two-year waitng list for the ultimate in rocking chair experience or the vintage white wicker rocking chair you've just bid successfully on ebay for $20, or somewhere in between.

7. And last but not least, do you want your rocking chair shipped to you assembled or are you handy with tools and don't mind assembling it yourself if you can save some money?

I hope these tips will make it easier to find the rocking chair that's just right for you - whether you're the couch potato looking for a more comfortable seat in front of your favorite TV sitcom, the delighted parent of a newly-born baby or the urban worker trying to relax in the evening after dinner with a book or the quietness of the night by the front porch.

About The Author

Flor Buenaventura is a writer who has a great interest in furnishings for the home and garden. To see a fantastic collection of resources related to rocking chairs, please visit her http://www.rocking-chair-dad.com website.


Monday, December 24, 2007

The Benefits of a Wool Rug

by: Moe Kermani

Wool rugs are very popular for contemporary homes. Should you consider one for your home?

Wool rugs in a modern contemporary home add a warm touch to any room. Many people prefer the look and feel of woven (hand made) or tufted (usually machine made) rugs. Many of the popular styles can be very affordable for low budget redecorating.

So for anyone who is looking to invest in a wool rug, there may be questions about the durability. Is it worth the investment to buy a wool rug?

Wool Rugs – Resilient, Resistant

While wool rugs are popular for many different reasons, one of the most popular reasons is the resistant nature of wool rugs. Wool fibers do not absorb soil very well. This makes the rugs easier to keep clean.

In addition, wool rugs are said to be resistant to fire. The rugs are safe to put in children’s rooms or in high traffic areas of the home. The material is also resistant to static electricity.

Wool also naturally absorbs water from the air. Studies show that the wool fiber may suck up to 30% of it’s own weight in water and it still feels dry to the touch. Wool rugs can actually absorb the water vapor in the air, relieving the humidity in the home.

Wool rugs are also very durable. They can sustain their quality for years, even within the home of an active family.

Easy to Clean Wool Rugs

Above, it was mentioned that wool rugs didn’t absorb dirt. Homeowners really like that the wool fibers are also easy to clean. You can remove most stains with a little warm water and with light blotting. No chemicals would be needed, making it safer for health conscious families.

Upkeep of your wool rug depends on how you look after it once you bring it home. A light vacuuming once a week with slow, even strokes actually helps to improve the quality. A new wool rug may shed a few fibers at first and this is quite natural. With time, the shedding effect will fade and with continued regular vacuuming, your carpet will be better conditioned and have improved quality.

The Amazing Designs of Wool Rugs

Rugs are not only popular for their many benefits, but also for their designs. Now, manufacturers can create popular oriental, Persian and other styles of rugs for any fashionable home. You can get traditional hand made carpets of fine quality, or for something a little more inexpensive, a machine made wool rug is just as beautiful. Many of the hand made rugs come from China, Spain or India. If you are looking for machine made rugs, many rug companies in the USA create these.

If you are looking for a nice contemporary feel to your home, wool rugs make for an elegant and inexpensive option. Finding the right one for your home should be easy, a redecorating store or a specialized wool rug shop would be able to assist you with your needs and also give recommendations on style. Wool rugs are a great investment for your home.

About The Author

Moe Kermani is the owner of Natural Area Rugs a distributor of fine quality, contemporary, area rugs. It is the fastest growing company in the field of distributing natural area rugs. They are dedicated to achieving world class performance through their belief in honesty and integrity in all their dealings with their customers. Their goal is to achieve the highest levels of customer satisfaction through the quality of their products, their prices, their service and the outstanding value of their products. Natural Area Rugs are located in Beverly Hills, California with warehouse and manufacturing facilities in Los Angeles, California. For more information visit http://www.naturalarearugs.com.


The Benefits of a Wool Rug

by: Moe Kermani

Wool rugs are very popular for contemporary homes. Should you consider one for your home?

Wool rugs in a modern contemporary home add a warm touch to any room. Many people prefer the look and feel of woven (hand made) or tufted (usually machine made) rugs. Many of the popular styles can be very affordable for low budget redecorating.

So for anyone who is looking to invest in a wool rug, there may be questions about the durability. Is it worth the investment to buy a wool rug?

Wool Rugs – Resilient, Resistant

While wool rugs are popular for many different reasons, one of the most popular reasons is the resistant nature of wool rugs. Wool fibers do not absorb soil very well. This makes the rugs easier to keep clean.

In addition, wool rugs are said to be resistant to fire. The rugs are safe to put in children’s rooms or in high traffic areas of the home. The material is also resistant to static electricity.

Wool also naturally absorbs water from the air. Studies show that the wool fiber may suck up to 30% of it’s own weight in water and it still feels dry to the touch. Wool rugs can actually absorb the water vapor in the air, relieving the humidity in the home.

Wool rugs are also very durable. They can sustain their quality for years, even within the home of an active family.

Easy to Clean Wool Rugs

Above, it was mentioned that wool rugs didn’t absorb dirt. Homeowners really like that the wool fibers are also easy to clean. You can remove most stains with a little warm water and with light blotting. No chemicals would be needed, making it safer for health conscious families.

Upkeep of your wool rug depends on how you look after it once you bring it home. A light vacuuming once a week with slow, even strokes actually helps to improve the quality. A new wool rug may shed a few fibers at first and this is quite natural. With time, the shedding effect will fade and with continued regular vacuuming, your carpet will be better conditioned and have improved quality.

The Amazing Designs of Wool Rugs

Rugs are not only popular for their many benefits, but also for their designs. Now, manufacturers can create popular oriental, Persian and other styles of rugs for any fashionable home. You can get traditional hand made carpets of fine quality, or for something a little more inexpensive, a machine made wool rug is just as beautiful. Many of the hand made rugs come from China, Spain or India. If you are looking for machine made rugs, many rug companies in the USA create these.

If you are looking for a nice contemporary feel to your home, wool rugs make for an elegant and inexpensive option. Finding the right one for your home should be easy, a redecorating store or a specialized wool rug shop would be able to assist you with your needs and also give recommendations on style. Wool rugs are a great investment for your home.

About The Author

Moe Kermani is the owner of Natural Area Rugs a distributor of fine quality, contemporary, area rugs. It is the fastest growing company in the field of distributing natural area rugs. They are dedicated to achieving world class performance through their belief in honesty and integrity in all their dealings with their customers. Their goal is to achieve the highest levels of customer satisfaction through the quality of their products, their prices, their service and the outstanding value of their products. Natural Area Rugs are located in Beverly Hills, California with warehouse and manufacturing facilities in Los Angeles, California. For more information visit http://www.naturalarearugs.com.


Thursday, December 20, 2007

Why A Mattress Pad Matters

by: Patricia Bowlin

Do mattress pads really do anything? What good are they? Well, if you've ever wondered if you need one, find out here!

A mattress pad can make any mattress a great deal more comfortable. By placing extra padding on top of the regular mattress, softness can be added without removing the support of the mattress. These pads are usually one to three inches in depth and are made for several different materials which we will discuss.

Most popular types of mattress pads are:

Memory foam pad- newer product that may ring a bell. The memory foam mattresses have received a great deal of television advertising and, while they look very appealing, they are not inexpensive. Recently, a thin pad version of this mattress has appeared on the market at a much more affordable price.

This pad is about 3 inches in depth and it has all the attributes of the memory foam mattress. The foam adjusts to the pressure placed on it so that there is no undue pressure on different areas of the body. This type of pad is very popular with anyone looking for additional comfort. If you don't have a pillow-top mattress but want that comfy feel, this pad may save you from purchasing a new mattress.

Egg crate- pad that looks as if you could store eggs in it. The foam hard depressions and raised areas that provide a bit more softness when placed over a hard mattress. The person who suffers from arthritis can frequently find sleeping much more comfortable with the addition of this type of pad on the mattress.

Egg crate pads are inexpensive and readily available. To install this type of pad on the mattress, first remove the bed sheets. Place the unrolled pad on top of the mattress and smooth it into place. If the bed is for a patient, a waterproof barrier may need to be placed over the pad where the most likely soiling could occur. Then place the fitted sheet back on the mattress. It will fit a bit more snugly than before and stay on the bed very well. Then you can remake the bed with the other bedding and it is ready for use.

Latex- if someone has incontinence problems or if you have children that are going through the stage where accidents can occur at night, latex pads can protect the mattress from stains and allow you to keep the mattress sanitary and odor-free.

Wool, down or feather pads- can make a cold bed warm and cozy. These pads, especially the down pads, also offer some added padding to help achy hips, shoulders, backs and other painful problems.

Pre-warming- these electric pads work very much like an electric blanket but are on the mattress rather than over the sleeper. No more cold feet when you jump into bed. Wintertime chills run and hide very soon after you turn your electric mattress covering onto the desired setting. Some people like to sleep with the pad on; others prefer simply to use this as a pre-heating device.

Alternating pressure pad- used on a mattress for the truly bed-ridden patient. This plastic pad is placed on the mattress and is constructed of baffled tubes or sections which are filled with air or water. The pad is connected to an electric pump and the pump inflates, deflates and changes the pressure in each section at regular intervals. This can help heal a bed sore or completely prevent bed sores from occurring.

This type of medical device pad can be obtained from a medical supply house and you should learn how to properly operate the device from the professionals who provide the equipment. Some medical supply houses will rent this type of pad for the use by those who must lie on their mattresses all day and night.

No matter what situation best describes your particular needs, you'll find the perfect mattress pad to fill your nights with better sleep and comfort!

About The Author

Patricia Bowlin makes it easy to create a bedroom with flair! Find countless Free tips, ideas and information here on choosing all of your bedding by visiting now http://www.best-in-bedding.com.


Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Tips for Planning Your Landscape

by: Janeth Duque

When you decide to plan your landscape, it does, indeed, require a plan. This means that you should carefully think about what you are doing, and what you would like to do. It also means budgeting and determining how much you can spend for your landscaping. Creating a home landscape for your yard is something that can be very costly if you do not carefully plan your landscape. Additionally, without a plan, you may end up with something you do not want and that costs money.

The first thing you should do when planning your landscape is to look at what you already have. Use a critical eye to determine what you like and what you dislike about the current landscape design. Also take into account how your home looks during different seasons. Think about how many year cycles you are likely to remain, and think about what you like and dislike about each one. List the blessings of your current landscape situation, large and small, and list what you would like to change, or what you wish you had. It is actually a good idea to do this for an entire year, so that you can see what you have at each season. Plus, taking your time will help you develop a better plan.

Another thing to do when planning your landscape is to keep in mind the needs you have for the space. You do not want your landscape ideas to interfere with family activities and the family routine. Would planting a shrub in a particular spot inhibit the walk to the mailbox? Putting a flowerbed in the middle of the lawn may upset family games. Would adding a deck make it more convenient to have family barbeque functions? Are there features, like a sandbox, that you would like to add to the landscape for your grandchildren? The fact of the matter is that when you are planning your landscape, you should take into account what the space will be used for. This is an essential part of the landscaping process, as the best designs combine attractiveness with utility.

Keeping a journal or folder of landscape ideas is another way to help you as you plan your landscape. You can keep your lists of current things you like and dislike, as well as your plan for the use of your landscape space in this folder or journal as well. You can gather ideas you like from looking at pictures in magazines, books, on the Internet, or by driving around the neighborhood and taking pictures. Make sure you include next to any images you have the things that you think you will need to build a particular feature, or notes on things you would do to tweak a design to make it all your own. You can even combine design ideas into something that you like. The point is to, while you are thinking about what you already have and what you will use your landscape for, look for ideas that will help you accomplish your goals.

Other things you should do while planning your landscape design is to check on building codes and make sure of property lines. You should also find out from your utility companies where underground power, telephone, and cable wires are run. You do not want to hit one of these important things while digging around in your yard and building your landscape. Getting all of this stuff figured out before you finalize your landscape plans can help you adjust for possibly having to relocate a feature in your plan or for having to scale down the size of something.

Another tool that can be very helpful as you plan your landscape is the use of landscape design software. Much of this software can be used to figure out which plants may look nice in your yard, and which plants would go with your house. Some programs even allow you to scan in an image of your own house in order to better get an idea of the possibilities. Most programs cost less than $70, and can even be used as references to determine which plants are best suited to survive in your climate.

With careful planning, and the use of a few tips, it is possible for you to plan out your landscape in such a way that you use your available space and your money much more efficiently.

About The Author

Janeth Duque of Geeks On Steroids. Janeth is well-known in the world of web design and search engine optimization.

Web Site: Geeks on Steroids

View their website at: http://www.geeksonsteroids.com

janeth@geeksonsteroids.com


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