8 Cool Screened In Porches For Spring and Summer

Cool breeze is a precious commodity as things outside begin to warm up this late Spring and early Summer.

screened in porchOne strategy in getting your fair share of it is by the simple and stylish addition of the screened in porch. The reason that many seek to find out how to install a screened in porch is because it solves a few issues when it comes to an outdoor living space.

One big one is gaining that precious breeze that defines late Spring and early Summer seasons without the presence of flying insects. Another is that a screened in porch lends itself to a wider range of design possibilities; reading areas, interior container gardens, outdoor dining spaces, and all-around indoor and outdoor continuity.

To help outline some of the practicalities, and frankly some  eye-popping designs, of screened in porches, here are 8 examples of how a screened in porch can be a defining element to any outdoor living space.  

Source:  BuildDirect, By  CATE MORGAN-HARLOW

Ready to add a fabulous screened in porch to your home?  Contact Bruzzese Home Improvements at  914-576-2572 or by Email:  bruzzesehomeimprovements@gmail.com.  We specialize in room additions and screened in porches!

Areas we service: Westchester, NY, Pelham, Pelham Manor, Scarsdale, Eastchester, Larchmont, Tuckahoe, Bronxville, Mamaroneck, Rye, Harrison, New Rochelle, White Plains, Lower Westchester New York.

20 Sublime Outdoor Havens

Glorious terraces, a sumptuous cabana, a panoramic pavilion … these stunning outdoor rooms offer the ultimate in relaxation and comfort

 

This is one of the most fun-looking outdoor rooms I've seen

 

Having an outdoor room is like getting to have your cake and eat it too. Furnishing a protected outdoor space — whether that’s a covered terrace, a pavilion, a loggia or a cabana — lets you enjoy the fresh air with all the amenities of home. Whether your idea of the perfect outdoor room includes a place in which to dine with friends or family, a lounge area in which to kick back and take in the view, or a comfy spot for napping, this roundup of dreamy outdoor rooms shows luxurious places for relaxing in spectacular surroundings.  Read more…

Source:  Houzz

 

Open Walls Widen Home Possibilities

Doing away with the boundary between indoor and outdoor living, open walls add space, light and drama to a home

Open Walls Widen Home Possibilities

 

My dream house has an open wall with a door made of glass. It opens to a deck and a pool and some sort of sunny, spectacular view, preferably with the Pacific Ocean in the background.

But, truth be told, I’d settle for a garage door that opens onto my own work-in-progress backyard.

Open walls are the ultimate embodiment of indoor-outdoor living, blurring the lines (well, getting rid of them actually) between the two. They are a fresh-air fanatic’s dream come true, and there is something about them that is just positive and friendly. They are the ultimate invitation.  Read more…

Source:  Samantha Schoech, houzz.com

Call us at 914-576-2572 or send us an email for all your home improvement needs.

Forget Boring Bathrooms

Add Old-World appeal with these custom-designed and fabricated stonework elements.

Forget Boring BathroomsBruce Birkl, owner of Distinctive Granite and Marble loves a challenge: “We say to our customers, if you can draw it, we can fabricate it.

”While buyers entering the 14,000-square-foot Holbrook facility may initially be wowed by the thousands of stone slabs and the state-of-the-art computer-aided fabrication facility, Birkl reminds people that most designs start with a simple sketch. From there, a mock-up is crafted by hand—not machine—and shown to the customer. Then, adjustments are made to determine how the element fits the function of the room.

One room where custom work and materials can really be explored is the bathroom. Because certain areas of most bathrooms see less wear-and-tear than kitchens, some exotic stones can be considered. These include onyx, certain types of marble and limestone, which in general have softer colors than granite.  Read more…

Via Today’s Renovation

Ready to update your bathroom?  Give us a call or send us an email for your free in home design consultation.

Think of lighting as art for your home

Think of lighting as art for your homeLighting is possibly the most powerful tool you have when it comes to interior design. It does not make sense to invest in beautiful furniture, rugs, paintings and accessories if they are in the dark. The perfect light fixture not only illuminates a space – it is also a beautiful, decorative design element.

“When looking for a light fixture, think of yourself as a curator looking for a perfect piece of art,” says interior designer Laurie Smith, known for her role as a featured designer on the hit television show Trading Spaces (2000-2008). Smith says, “Like art, a fabulous fixture can make a strong design statement, as well as provide illumination for your space.”

Often consumers do not realize the difference updated lighting can make in their homes. Smith suggests finding one special piece and building a room around it. “In design school, we learned that lighting is the most exciting and mysterious medium in design. Lighting is sculptural; it’s textural, it’s exciting,” she says.

“There are so many varying styles and designs in lighting today that the possibilities are endless. Different materials and shapes are just part of what goes into determining that perfect fixture,” says Smith. “For instance, do you want the shape of your piece to contrast with your room’s schematic or coordinate with it? Taking a traditional fixture and placing it into a modern setting creates interest through contrast, while taking a sleek modern fixture and putting it into a traditional setting infuses new vitality and a sophisticated accent.”

With so many choices on the market, the task of selecting a light fixture can be difficult and overwhelming for many homeowners. It’s just a matter of developing a plan or one idea. To help consumers get started, Smith talks about the importance of lighting to interior design in a new video series. Each minute-long video, created by the American Lighting Association, focuses on a different aspect of lighting and ways to incorporate it into every homeowner’s design plan.

Videos in the series include:

* Choosing the Right Lighting Fixture
* Find an Object of Inspiration
* The Impact of a Single Lamp
* Lighting Fixtures as Art

The videos can be viewed on the ALA website at www.AmericanLightingAssoc.com.

How do you think lighting can change the appearance of your home?  We love to hear your feedback!

Black is ‘in’ for up-to-date interiors

Stylish new kitchen additions take a dramatically dark turn

Stylish new kitchen additions take a dramatically dark turnLove the way you feel after slipping into your little black dress, or donning a well-tailored black suit? Black is not only a great shade on you – it’s also a great shade for your home. The stylish finish is especially perfect in the kitchen – and can be seen in everything from kitchen appliances to hardware, and now even faucets. Make your kitchen feel just as good as you do in your go-to outfit with the magic of black.

Appliance accents 
Stainless steel appliances exude the aura of a high-end, professional kitchen. But the modern stainless appliance wouldn’t be complete without rich, black accents. From ironwork grates and griddles on stainless stoves to refrigerators with black ice makers and handles, the combination of black and stainless conveys professionalism and power. Not in the market for new major appliances? This same feeling can be conveyed with smaller ticket items, from the coffee maker to the toaster oven.

A dramatic finish 
The sink is, without a doubt, the most used area in the kitchen. From filling cups to washing dishes; rinsing fruits and vegetables to replenishing Fido’s bowl, the sink is used dozens of times per day. That said, it should be the first place we consider when it comes to decor, not just an afterthought. Since it’s such a central area, why not give your sink a bit of character by adding a dramatic black faucet? The Arbor kitchen faucet in a Matte Black finish from Moen provides a streamlined appearance that coordinates perfectly with black or stainless-and-black kitchen appliances and accessories. The collection also features the Moen Reflex system on pullout and pulldown kitchen faucets. Reflex allows for unmatched performance that offers smooth operation, easy movement and secure retraction.

Pair your bold, black kitchen faucet with a professional-grade stainless steel sink, like a Moen Lancelot Professional undermount sink, to create a look that blends a high-end chef’s kitchen with a touch of signature style.

Sophisticated surfaces 
Countertops play a large role in the function of a kitchen, setting the stage for food preparation, the use and display of everything from toasters to teapots, and activities from surfing the internet to entertaining guests. Black granite countertops can be a great addition to an already sophisticated kitchen. The options are far more extensive than basic black, ranging from midnight black to a more mixed shade, with secondary colors of grey, white, or even bolder hues, like sapphire. If your budget doesn’t quite leave enough room for granite countertops, solid surface countertops offer a look that mimics stone, at a lower price point. With a durable, non-porous surface and a seamless appearance, solid surface countertops are the perfect solution for busy families.

Dramatic radiance 
Light fixtures can often set the tone for the entire room, both by the light they give off and the look of the fixture. Create a new appearance for your kitchen and dining area by adding a bold choice in lighting. Chandeliers with vintage-style ironwork, strings of black glass or crystal beads, or even dramatic black prints, can be a beautiful accent to an elegant kitchen – the piece de resistance to tie the whole room together.

With just a few stylish, dark-hued accents, you can create a kitchen that stands out, instead of simply blending in.

Bruzzese Home Improvements specializes in kitchen home improvement projects and remodeling.  Please click here for more info!

2012 outdoor living trends can easily update your patio or deck

2012 outdoor living trends can easily update your patio or deckMore homeowners want their outdoor space to truly be an extension of their house and are taking steps to create an inviting area to relax, play and host guests. If you want to update your deck or patio for warm weather entertaining, you don’t have to spend a lot of time or money. You can easily refresh the items you already have and add new stylish elements by keeping some top trends and design ideas in mind.

Mix functional furniture: 
The line between indoor and outdoor design is blurring. You can coordinate the style of adjacent indoor and outdoor rooms, since you and your guests will likely spend time in both. No matter if you have a large outdoor deck or a simple small patio, many affordable, stylish outdoor furniture options are available at your local home improvement retail stores. Set up furniture with flow in mind, grouping pieces together to encourage comfort, conversation and a view of nature.

Add colorful accessories:
Incorporating rugs, outdoor pillows, candles and other accessories in vivid colors or fun patterns can really make your outdoor space come alive. Pick three to four colors for your scheme and stick with those colors throughout your design choices. Some of the season’s top hues include rich reds, vivid blues, soothing neutrals and garden-inspired greens. Metal accents are popular as well, so look for decor with gold or silver detailing for a design that’s modern with a tropical flare.

Incorporate a fire pit: 
An outdoor bonfire likely evokes pleasant memories of the past, so incorporate a fire pit into your patio space so your whole family can enjoy time together roasting marshmallows, telling stories and gazing at the stars. Today’s modern fire pits are both stylish and useful, adding a cozy ambiance while warding off the chill on cooler nights. Plus when the seasons do change and fall brings with it lower temperatures, you can still enjoy the beautiful outdoor space you’ve created because you’ll be comfortably warm. Remember to look for options that have a removable screen, so you can open when needed for cooking and then close to keep the fire safely contained.

Create privacy: 
Just because you’re outdoors doesn’t mean that you don’t want a bit of privacy from neighbors or passersby. The good news is it’s easy to create boundaries to your space by using a pergola or outdoor curtains. These options tie in nicely with other outdoor design trends and can give just the right amount of privacy, creating your own outdoor “room” in which to enjoy the long, sunny days.

Light the night: 
Lighting can really make your outdoor space come alive once the sun goes down. Add depth and intrigue by “lightscaping” from different sources. Consider putting up string lights that provide a magical setting that is sure to dazzle guests long after darkness falls. Add an intimate wall lantern next to the patio door or eco-friendly LED garden and path lights to add a soft illumination to outdoor space.

Grow an herb garden: 
There’s nothing that adds the flavors of summer to food like fresh herbs. One of today’s top trends is to have a container garden so you always have your favorite herbs on hand to freshly pick. Popular herbs that are easy to grow include basil, chives, cilantro, dill, fennel and mint. When planting, use containers that complement your outdoor design. Vintage styles that feature aged patinas are very popular this year.

We specialize in decks & patios!  Please contact us for a free in home consultation so we can help you create your own outdoor oasis!

Bathroom remodeling ideas that add style and space

Bathroom remodeling ideas that add style and spaceNow, more than ever, homeowners are adding to the value and comfort of their homes by renovating bathrooms into private retreats with luxurious touches that rival those of an upscale spa or resort.

When considering an update for your bathroom, whether you choose to do an extensive remodel or a smaller project, most kitchen and bath designers agree on these tips:

* Consider the size of the bathroom. If you have a small room, look for ways to make it feel more expansive. A sleek, stylish glass shower enclosure helps your bathroom appear more spacious, and in most instances, a frameless shower enclosure will provide the cleanest, most open look. If you decide to go with a framed shower enclosure, you’ll have two choices: frameless sliding doors or framed doors. For framed doors, be sure the finish of the metal framing and handles matches your bathroom fixtures.

* Think outside the box. Taking a creative approach to bathroom necessities can help you make the most of your space. For instance, the majority of shower enclosures are square or rectangular, but today’s designers encourage you to think about other shapes. Don’t be afraid to consider a circular or oval-shaped enclosure, a triangle or even a standard shape with an artfully bowed glass door, which can redefine the space and make your bathroom more versatile.

* Don’t skimp on the glass. All glass used for shower enclosures is safety glass, which means it is tempered to make it stronger and more shatterproof. That doesn’t mean all shower glass is alike, though. Most shower doors and enclosures are fabricated from conventional clear glass – which typically has a light, almost imperceptible green cast – or some variation of frosted glass.

* Brighten things up. Repainting your bathroom with light colors can make it feel more spacious. If your bathroom has windows or skylights, use window treatments and accents that maximize the amount of light that comes through to give the room a more airy feel.

* Find the best use for your space. Move bathroom cleaning items to a hall closet if you are stretched for storage space in your bathroom, especially if you have freestanding storage units that are taking up valuable floor space. If you need more storage space, consider adding built-in compartments if possible between your wall studs to maximize usuable space.

It’s been shown time and time again that remodeling a bathroom can add to a home’s value. Whether you want to sell or just enjoy your home more, it’s one of the most practical and dramatic ways to make your home more appealing.

For more bathroom remodeling idea’s, please click here.

Easy Kitchen Paint Color Designs You Can Copy

What’s the Kitchen’s Look?

The addition of the Eddie Bauer line has given Valspar’s collection a new dimension. Now, you can choose ready-made kitchen paint color schemes that look like a mountain cabin, a bungalow, a farmhouse, and more.

Here, the relentlessly sunny look of Eddie Bauer’s Daffodil is punctuated–and kept in check–with the darker Pine Needle kitchen island.

Restrained Farmhouse Yellow Kitchen
Valspar/Eddie Bauer Kitchen Paint Color Idea: Farmhouse Yellow Copyright Valspar

Kitchen Paint Tips and Tricks

Don’t stress about kitchen paint colors. Cabinetry covers at least 50% of most kitchen wall-space, leaving the other 50% to be used for backsplashes, trim, and other non-paint areas. That leaves a smaller area than you might think that needs paint.  Click here to continue reading…

By , About.com Guide

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