Category Archives: Interior Design

How to properly clean your washing machine

 

If your washing machine is smelling worse than your gym clothes, it may be time to give it a thorough cleaning. Believe it or not even washing machines get dirty and need to be cleaned. The easiest test to determine if your washer needs to be washed is to, well….stick your head in and smell the inside.

Soils from laundry, detergents and hard water minerals can build up in areas that are hard to see which can develop an odor over time. Mold, grime and mildew in the washer lid and the door are another problem area.  It’s recommended that you try these steps below every six months to keep your washer in tip-top shape.

Top loading washers

Set your washer on the highest level, as well as the hottest setting. Add 4 cups of white vinegar to the wash cycle. After the cycle starts, pause the machine and allow it to sit for an hour. During this time, wipe down the top of the washer with a cloth dipped in the hot vinegar water. Use an old toothbrush to clean the fabric softener and bleach dispensers as well. After an hour, continue the wash cycle.

Next, run another wash cycle using one cup of baking soda. At the end of the cycle, wipe the top inside of the washer tub to remove any scum.

Front loading washers

The rubber gasket at the front of the washer accumulates water, dirt, mildew and other grime. Before cleaning the washer drum, clean the gasket by spraying it with white vinegar and wiping with a damp cloth.

Set the washer to the highest level and the hottest water temperature. Add two cups of white cleaning vinegar to detergent dispenser. Run it through a complete cycle.

Run another cycle on the highest level and at the hottest water temperature, this time adding one-half cup of baking soda to the drum. When cycle is done, wipe inside drum of washer with a damp cloth.

Bonus Tip: Help to subdue mildew and mold by leaving the lid or door open when not in use.

Monday Blues: The Good Kind

The color blue offers a stunning versatility that makes it an ideal complement when paired with different colors, textures and styles. Universally some shade of the color blue is a favorite among men & woman. This versatile color has the ability to be friendly, demanding, powerful, peaceful and even trustworthy. Check out these images below to see how homeowners incorporated it’s many different shades into their kitchen & baths.

This traditional kitchen pairs pastel blue & white for a fresh & clean look

Blue, yellow, and red define this formal kitchen giving it a rustic but fun look.

One of my personal favorites, southwestern with a touch of rustic charm.

French blue-painted cabinets paired with stainless steel appliances give this kitchen a traditional but modern feel. Coming together for something that is extremely charming and beautiful.

Azure blue walls provide a stunning backdrop for this neutral cabinetry in shades of white and charcoal gray.

                           How gorgeous is this Cobalt Blue Mosaic tile?!

                                              The  indigo wall pairs beautifully with this iridescent tile.

Aqua paired with natural oak gave this custom built pool house (Lundbergbuilders.com) a beachy vibe.

 

Marsala: Simple ways to use Pantone’s 2015 Color of the Year in Your Home

123445Each year the color experts at Pantone join forces to decide which color will be dominant in the new year. This year they settled on the color Marsala which name derives from yes…you guessed it the fortified wine. Holding true to the roots of it’s name, this color is not only striking and bold, but also mild and earthy thanks to it’s red-brown roots. Witdfgh many differing and unique qualities it is appealing to both men and woman of all ages. This color is accented well by matte finishes which allows it to stand by it’s earthy and natural qualities. But on the other hand, adding a bit of sheen allows Marsala to be luxurious, glamorous and appear high end. This color can stand on it’s own or serve as an accent to a variety of other colors and textures. The best quality about this color is it’s versatility.If your not ready to dive in and paint an entire room this rich color, try one of these simple accents to jump on the bandwagon!

1. Rugs have the ability to transform a room and are a fairly modest change. Try adding a smaller accent rug for a more subtle change or a full size rug for a bolder statement. Many options can be found at capelrugs.com

2. Try adding a vase or a candle to incorporate Marsala in a noticeable but small way.

Try this planter from Amazon or this candle holder from H&M

3. Have you ever heard the saying go big or go home? Well go bold or go home with this couch from Urban Outfitters. Its sure to make a statement. 31841885_061_b

4. One of the simplest and most inexpensive ways to jump on board is to add flowers.Screen-Shot-2014-12-04-at-6_09_47-AM

5. Try a throw or a bedspread for an easy and warm touch Marsala-throw6. You can add this color to your home in very functional ways by snatching these dishes in this rich color. Many appliances can also be found.120915-pantonemarsala

7. We at 314designstudio love these marsala colored cabinets. By using this color as an accent piece the designer chose not to overdo it by keeping the rest of the cabinetry simple and uniformed. High_res-_DSC4870-Edit_940_626_c1-490x326

8. A Marsala colored bathtub anyone? ideas-to-use-marsala-for-bathroom-decor-4

9. Throw pillows are always an excellent way to add color, texture and personality to your home. How quirky is this Marsala colored wine themed pillow? slide_387074_4654130_free

10. But finally…..if you really want to make the commitment paint a wall as an accent, or an entire room in this color for a beautiful and bold result. To spice it up even more try a textured wallpaper.

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Overall, like this color a lot of the ideas that are presented make bold statements and requires a large commitmentScreen-Shot-2015-01-01-at-2_06_22-PM. Keep in mind that you have the ability to incorporate this color in simple ways to keep your home trendy and fresh if your not ready to commit fully. By pairing this color with other accent colors you allow it to steal the show without overdoing it. Check out the rest of Pantones Spring color list for more inspiration.

THE PROS AND CONS OF KITCHEN & BATHROOM COUNTERTOP SURFACES

ACRYLIC

Acrylic is a man-made, solid surface (non-porous) product. It comes in either pure acrylic or modified acrylic forms. First introduced by Dupont in the 1970s, Corian® is a leading brand in this market.

Pros: Easy to fabricate into custom shapes and sizes, repairable if cracked or chipped, colors options are virtually limitless (unlike stone which is limited to naturally occurring colors).

Cons: Sensitivity to heat and may burn. It can scratch, but scratches can be polished out.

Verdict: Relatively inexpensive, durable and versatile. Good choice for ultra-modern kitchen designs.

acrylicQUARTZ

Quartz is an engineered stone made primarily from natural quartz and blended with resins.

Pros: Completely maintenance free and impermeable to heat, stains, and scratching.

Cons: Quartz is expensive (comparable to a tier 4 granite level) and it doesn’t have the natural veining and color variations that natural stones have.

Verdict: Fairly expensive alternative for those who want the beauty of marble without the maintenance or veining.

quartzGRANITE

Granite is a natural stone. As such, no two slabs are completely alike. Granite is graded based on source, quality, and appearance ranging from tier 1 to tier 5. A tier 1 granite color is more readily available (and can be found at most distributors), whereas a tier 5 slab is the most rare and expensive, and will have huge variances in colors and veining. Granite can also come in either semi-exotic or exotic.

Pros: Granite holds up to heat and does not scratch or stain. Occasional maintenance is required for sealing, but most modern sealants require little or no maintenance.

Cons: Granite is pricey and as a porous surface can harbor bacteria, if poorly sealed.

Verdict: Expensive, as this is still the most sought-after countertop for its beauty and durability.

Need itSOAPSTONE

Soapstone is one of the oldest and most dense stones. It was used primarily for utility sinks for its durability. In its natural state, soapstone is dull and ranges from very light gray to almost black with off white veining. When oiled, it appears dark green.

Pros: Very dense; impervious to liquids and chemicals, one-of-a-kind beauty and veining similar to marble, virtually no maintenance required, and environmentally friendly as it requires no finishes (you can use mineral oil for a darker finish if desired). Scratches can be left as a natural patina. Soapstone ages well. Scratches can be repaired more easily than other types of natural stones if desired.

Cons: Expensive, and color options are limited to those naturally occurring gray and green tones.

Verdict: Although it is expensive, soapstone is a highly prized stone and is most common in classic, coastal, and cottage style kitchens.

soapstone*Soapstone featured in back countertops

MARBLE

Valued for its rarity and its history as a prized stone for use in buildings and sculptures, there is no other stone that compares to the natural beauty and elegance of marble.

Pros: A refined and distinctive look with creamy smooth texture and veining.

Cons: Marble is very susceptible to stains so is not typically used in the entire kitchen. It will also scratch, chip.

Verdict: Very expensive. Marble is top choice for pastry chefs because it remains cool to the touch, but care is required.

314 Design Studio