How To Use Oceanside In Your Home

Creating A Baby-Safe Playroom

When your baby gets old enough to move around on their own and decide which toys they’re going to entertainment themselves with, it’s time to designate a space in your home for them to play. Doing so will not only protect your baby from injury, but it will help keep your home organized as well. Here’s how you can transform a room in your home into the perfect play space for your baby.

  • Choose the right room. The ideal playroom will be in an area of your home that doesn’t have access to stairs. Designate a room on the ground floor to be the play space. This will serve as a catch-all for your baby’s toys, helping to keep the rest of your home organized, as well as a space you can dedicate time and resources to transforming into a neutral, baby-proof zone.
  • Keep furniture at a minimum. Furnishings should be as low to the ground as possible to avoid tipping issues. Many children can be injured or even killed in furniture tipping accidents. To ensure furniture never tips over, anchor large pieces to the wall with L-brackets. This will give the furniture the strength to withstand the weight of your child should they decide to climb the shelves or hang onto any ledges the furniture has. Find more information on anchoring furniture here. The less there is for your baby to bump, scrape, or bruise themselves against, the better!
  • Cover electrical outlets. You can use traditional plastic coverings or invest in the outlets that come equipped with the automatic coverings. Whichever route you take, these coverings will prevent your baby from sticking their fingers or unwanted objects into the outlets and causing electric shock.
  • Maintain cleanliness. A sanitary play space is a safe play space. Even a thin layer of dust can end up in your curious baby’s mouth. Clean the playroom on a regular basis, using microfiber cloths to wipe surfaces and vacuuming the floor to remove debris. Sanitize toys on the top rack of your dishwasher to remove any surface germs, especially after play dates.
  • Give your baby a soft landing. The flooring of your baby’s playroom should be carpeted. This is the softest surface for your baby to crawl, tumble, and occasionally topple over on. From broadloom to plush, you’ll find carpeting in a variety of styles and colors to match your existing home decor. If you prefer the look of hardwood, use foam mats and a baby gate to designate a safe, soft play area.
  • Always supervise. Whenever your baby is at play, an adult should always be present, whether it’s a parent, a responsible sibling, or babysitter. This will help ensure baby doesn’t get into anything they aren’t supposed to and limit their chances of climbing on furniture or playing with outlets.

With the right planning, designing a neat and stylish playroom that is safe for your baby is easy. For more decorating tips for your baby’s playroom, reach out to Janet Bertin, an Arlington interior decorator.

How To Remove Crayon From Surfaces

Is there a toddler running around your house? If the answer is yes, the chances of having a work of art drawn on your walls, flooring, furniture or clothing is rather high. Children like to express themselves in any way that they can – this includes using their art supplies on your home’s surfaces. In honor of National Crayon Month, we rounded up the best ways to remove crayon from surfaces around your home. just in case your child’s masterpiece ends up somewhere other than their paper.

Here’s how to remove crayon from the following surfaces:

  • Walls: The experts of Englewood, FL painters recommend heating the crayon marks with a blow dryer. Next, use a wet, soapy wash cloth and scrub the surface. If this doesn’t work, make a paste of equal parts baking soda and water and scrub the stain with the paste. Another tried and true method is Mr. Clean Magic Erasers. Though it’s not DIY, it still works wonders and can be used on multiple surfaces and for various stains. Use with caution – scrubbing too hard can remove the paint from your walls.
  • Hardwood Floors: There are a few solutions for removing crayon from hardwood floors. One option is to use mineral spirits. This is a type of solvent used for cleaning grease and grime, but it works well with crayons on hardwood floors, too. You can also use Goo Gone, which cleans up stains and sticky substances. If you don’t have mineral spirits or Goo Gone available, scrub the area with dishwashing detergent and water.
  • Countertops: One of the easiest ways to remove crayon from your countertops is to spray an all-purpose cleaner on the stain and scrub away. Once again, warm water and dish soap or a Magic Eraser will also do the trick.
  • Carpets:  Start by removing crayon from your carpet by scraping off as much of the wax as you can. Follow that with a carpet cleaner. You can also place a paper towel over the stain and heat it with a blow dryer. Any spots that aren’t absorbed into the paper towel can be dabbed with hydrogen peroxide.
  • Clothes: Similar to the carpet, first scrape off as much as you can. Then, throw the clothes in the wash on a high setting. If there’s an entire pile of crayon covered clothes, wash the load with hot water using laundry soap and one cup of baking soda.
  • Furniture: As an interior decorator in Englewood Cliffs, NJ, Laura Maxwell has seen it all when it comes to furniture stains, particularly amongst families with young children. Like other fabric based surfaces, start with a scraping. Then make a mixture of dish soap and warm water. Use a brush to scrub the stain away.

When removing any crayon marking, make sure to test a small hidden space with your desired cleaning method to make sure it’s not going to further damage the surface. A little elbow grease goes a long way when removing crayons from surfaces. Most methods are DIY, saving you a fortune on home cleaning costs! Remember these tips the next time your child’s masterpiece ends up somewhere other than the drawing board.

How You Should Be Choosing Patio Furniture

No matter the season, having a place to sit and relax outside of your home has many benefits. You get to breathe fresh air, up your Vitamin D intake, reduce stress and generally feel happier. The patio is the perfect space to optimize for maximum outdoor comfort and pleasure. When designing your patio, there are few things to consider throughout the process. Furniture is at the top of that list! After all, it’s what transforms your patio into the ultimate place to relax. Here are tips on choosing patio furniture:

  • Think about the elements. When purchasing patio furniture, keep Mother Nature in mind. Rain can cause metals like wrought iron to rust. Dry air can cause wood to splinter, and the wind can cause light items to blow away.  To avoid these problems, consider your geographic area and the bones of the furniture you’re going to invest in, as well as any cushions or pillows. Look for fabrics that can withstand different weather conditions so you don’t always have to run outside and bring them into the house.
  • Make sure it’s comfortable. There’s nothing worse than sitting down to unwind and not actually being able to because of the furniture. With that in mind, a good rule to follow is: make hard things soft. No matter what type of chairs, benches, or chaises you buy, get cushions to accompany them. Whether you’re lounging in the sun or enjoying a meal al fresco, you’ll want comfort to be a priority.
  • Look for more possibilities. If you don’t have a garage, shed or room anywhere inside your house to store the furniture, think about ways the patio furniture itself can act as a storage unit. An easy solution is a bench or ottoman with a removable top. Inside you can store cushions and accessories when it’s raining or during the offseason. Place cushions on top and you have extra seating too!
  • Don’t be afraid of color. While most of your chairs and tables will come in black, white or a neutral color, you can incorporate pops of color in the cushions, pillows, and rugs. Look for bright solids or fun patterns that go with the vibes of the rest of your home. You can also use the colors of the nature surrounding you to compliment the decor. Surrounded by greenery? Throw some red in the furniture. Is your view an ocean or lake? Nautical patterns are perfect!
  • Invest in UV protection. Have you ever stepped outside for a moment only to wind up sitting out there for hours? In times like these, it’s easy to forget sunscreen. Make sure you invest in a sturdy umbrella or awning for those spontaneous moments or particularly sunny days. Even when it’s scorching outside, a little shade will go a long way.

Your patio is your outdoor oasis. When it comes to choosing your patio furniture, weather resistance and comfort are key factors to take into consideration. For more help designing your patio, contact Mimi Wilson, a Northern Virginia interior decorator.

Designing Your Bedroom To Promote Better Sleep

Did you know that how you style our bedroom can actually affect your ability to have a good night’s sleep? Our quality of life is dependent on the quality of our interior spaces. It is important that we take care in designing our spaces thoughtfully, with an emphasis on our bedrooms. These 3 secrets will help you create a bedroom that promotes a better night’s sleep.

Allow Darkness. Lights communicate to your brain that it is time to wake up, so keeping your room dark is one of the main foundations to promoting better sleep. If you live in an area where there is a lot of light pollution or an area where your bedroom windows face the rising sun, invest in light-eliminating curtains to block out lights and activity that would otherwise cause anxiety and distraction. It’s important to eliminate as much light as possible in the bedroom. This includes the glow of our electronic devices. Many of us use our phones as our alarm clocks, but the light from our phones can also be disturbing to our sleep cycles. Try an analog or vintage alarm clock rather than your cell phone. Coming out of a deep sleep to the brightness of your phone can be damaging to your vision.

Similarly, televisions in the bedroom can be a distracting light source for your sleep cycle. Use an armoire to conceal your television while it is not being used. While it can be comforting to fall asleep with the TV on, the light from the monitor can disrupt your sleep pattern. If you absolutely need the television on to fall asleep, set a timer so it turns off automatically, or replace the habit completely with soothing music or a sleep meditation recording. In addition, use soft lighting in your bedroom. Try investing in bedside lamps with low wattage light bulbs to avoid the use of overhead lighting during the night. Bright lights remind the brain of wake time, and it is important to enhance and promote the feeling of sleep time.

Clear Clutter. Too much clutter can disturb your ability to have a good night’s sleep. Always keep your work out of the bedroom to promote relaxation and peace. The more your bedroom promotes a  feeling of leisure, the more it will actually feel like a luxurious place. Keep household items like your laundry basket in a closet or other enclosed area. Leaving clothes around the room can remind one of daily tasks and chores that need to be done. By neatly enclosing these items in a designated place, you’ll eliminate the look and feel of a clustered space. The same goes for all of your personal items. Clothing, jewelry, and accessories should all have a place. Keeping your items organize will promote a feeling of an organized life.

Color palette. Soothing colors can actually promote relaxation and enhance your ability to fall asleep and feel calm. Muted earth tones, such as blues, creams and greens, are ideal colors for bedrooms, according to the experts of Aurora painters. Try to avoid bright and loud colors in your bedroom to create a more restful atmosphere. Pale gray is the perfect color for bedrooms. It creates a sense of balance in any kind of lighting, plus it plays well with accent colors like lavender, pale pink, and cool blue. Use these hues in your bedroom accessories like your comforter and wall art to create the ultimate relaxing space.

Sleep is an important and sacred part of our everyday life that benefits both our physical and mental health. The better sleep we get, the better we feel throughout our day. Simple design concepts, like light, color, and organization, create the foundation for the perfect night’s sleep. By utilizing these tips, you too can promote a better and healthier sleep for yourself. For more relaxing bedroom decorating tips, contact Angie Lowry, a Smithfield, VA interior designer.