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Build It Like Bendrick

Sep 16, 2019

Landscape designer Sara Bendrick gets her hands dirty beautifying the outdoors spaces of California homes as host of two DIY Network series – Build It Like Bendrick and Lawn & Order. Growing up in San Diego, she discovered a passion for being hands on and creating what she wanted to see in her world. Sara brings that passion to each of her landscape design projects, realizing each one has unique challenges and budget constraints that pave the way for creative solutions. She’ll be sharing her passion with guests at the show, but before she arrives we got to know her a little better: 

Sara-Bendrick-Photoshoot

Wallpaper: love or hate?

Well, you can't use it in the landscape so, I'm indifferent!

 

Are you a plant mama, or is your green thumb lacking?

You could say I'm a plant mama, but really I am more like a surrogate plant mama, as I get people started with plants and then let them take over. 

Best décor or home improvement app folks don’t know about?

@phazeapp is great, it’s for contractors, clients and their friends to share progress of the project as it's being built. Great for before and afters. 

Canva - Dog At A Stairs sml


Tell us about your pets.

We just got a new puppy, he is a calm guy with crystal blue eyes and a cinnamon coat. Trying to train him to be a work dog. 

What are your best landscaping tips?

Don't forget to plan for maintenance, even a low maintenance garden looks best with occasional upkeep and editing. Every two years or so I remove plants that didn't do as well as I hoped and replace them with new ones, I refresh the ground cover and check the irrigation. 

garden with pink

What home trends are you loving? What styles do you think will emerge in the future?

I really think the color pink is going to be more present, traditionally it been used fairly conservatively in the landscape but Pantone named "living Coral" color of the year gives me hope I can convince a client to let me go wild with it. 

 

Which HGTV / DIY Network star would you most like to work with and why?

I'd love to work with Jasmin Roth from hidden Potential, I've meet her a few times and she is super sweet and very talented. 

 

What’s your favorite part about speaking at a home show?

I love sharing ideas and answering  questions to help people with their outdoor spaces.

 

Find Sara’s landscape book Big Impact Landscaping at Amazon.com

For more information on Sara’s appearance at the show, please visit FairgroundsRaleighHomeShows.com

 

Post Date: September 16, 2019

Sponsor Spotlight: RenovationFind

Sep 16, 2019

We're excited to have RenovationFind as a sponsor of the 2019 Calgary Fall Home Show. Before you visit this innovative company at the BMO Centre from September 19-22, please enjoy our brief interview with the RenovationFind team below.

RenovationFind

Q: How does your service work?

"RenovationFind.com is a free online directory of certified trades, contractors and home improvement companies. All companies listed on our website www.renovationfind.com have gone through a stringent pre-screening process. Using a third-party organization, we run extensive background checks on seven of the most important criteria so we can provide homeowners with legitimate, reputable and trustworthy companies. Those criteria include legal background checks, credit background checks, monitoring for customer complaints, checking for proof of a valid business license and insurance, as well as WCB coverage. Companies who are a member of the Better Business Bureau receive a higher ranking on the directory. We continue to monitor the companies based on these criteria to ensure they’re keeping up to standard.

RenovationFind helps protect homeowners by offering them a directory of ethical, trustworthy home renovation and home improvement companies. We also are focused on promoting the good companies, to help build a positive reputation for the renovation industry. It’s a win-win for both the consumer and the businesses involved."

RenovationFind

Q: What can we look forward to from you at the Calgary Fall Home Show?

"We are going to have a booth at the show where people can come and learn more about us. At our booth, homeowners can post their projects and we will get them three quotes from reputable and RenovationFind certified companies for that project. For example, if they are looking to do a major home renovation or addition, we can connect them with general contractors in Calgary, providing them with actual quotes for their project.

We will also be doing a big giveaway for signing up as a RenovationFind Member. Members receive exclusive pricing and promotions from select partnering businesses, which is helpful if renovations are in the future. As an incentive to grow our membership, people can enter to win $1000 and an iPad at our booth at the show."

Q: What advice do you have for homeowners?

"Research, research and research. This is the key. Make sure everything is on paper and documented, signed and legally executable. Check the contractor’s credentials and consult with sites like ours, ask for references and ask for documentation of their credentials such as prepaid contractor licence, permits pulled for your job and a detailed breakdown of your bill.

Homeowners should not be afraid to ask for documentation as it is within your right to ask.

A tip when asking for references: I recommend to ask for the last three jobs and contact the references to verify the information. Request the contractor provide you with a valid invoice or documentation to prove the customer was real. By asking for the last three jobs, the contractor can’t pick and choose because it’s not likely people ever want to give bad references. This is like you apply for a job and got the interview, and then you’re asked for references – the chances of you providing bad references is not likely."

RenovationFind

Q: What inspires your services?

"I met a lot of homeowners through my granite countertop company that were being taken advantage of by people in the industry. K &J’s is one of the last companies in the house (during the construction or renovation process) so people would come to us and say ‘oh, my plumber, he took a deposit and disappeared’ or ‘I bought cabinets, I put 50 per cent down and I can’t get a hold of them and their company is out of business. I just started hearing so many horror stories, and it was kind of ridiculous. Everyone was being taken advantage of and no one knew how to find a good contractor, and then I started thinking about a better way to connect homeowners with trusted trades."

Q: What is your favourite part of the Calgary Fall Home Show?

"We love meeting homeowners and getting the opportunity to promote the companies on our directory. If we can connect a homeowner who needs work done with a reputable contractor, we’ve helped them both out. That is why we do things like this home show."

Q: What design or decor trends are you loving in 2019 or anticipating for 2020?

"When speaking with homeowners at these shows, we’ve learned that most people would rather renovate the home they are in than buy a new one and move. People like to improve the house they’ve put down roots in, to stay in the neighbourhood they love; and are renovating their home to meet their changing needs. Whether it’s a bathroom addition or a new basement development, we’ve loved watching this movement of renovating to make a home better for the long-term stay."

Q: Are there any success stories you'd like to share?

"Homeowners have been pleased with the RenovationFind website. Feedback has shown that having a listing of companies that have already been pre-screened as well as the subsequent ongoing monitoring takes a lot of stress out of the renovation process. For the companies, we can market their business to an engaged and interested target demographic. The companies on our site have seen increased business from quality leads generated from their listing and content posted on RenovationFind.com."

Q: What can folks expect when they work with you?

"For homeowners, you can expect honest, down-to-earth advice on hiring a trades or home renovation company. They can trust that we are doing our due diligence screening and continually monitoring all the companies on the website. If you become a RenovationFind Member, you will receive exclusive pricing and promotions from select renovation and home improvement companies in your city. They’ll find a huge list of categories including general contractors, concrete contractors, painters, electricians, Calgary HVAC companies, siding contractors, window companies in Calgary and more!

For companies, we are committed to promoting them to homeowners in their target geographical market. Their content and messaging will reach our vast membership through email campaigns, blog postings, social media marketing and search engine optimization targeting. We work hard to promote the companies on our site and love to see how our work helps their business grow."

The Calgary Fall Home Show is your source for trusted home experts, like RenovationFind. Join us at the BMO Centre September 19-22 to get great ideas for your space and see HGTV Celebrity Contractor Bryan Baeumler (appearing Friday and Saturday). We can't wait to see you at the show!

Q&A With TLC’S Trading Spaces Carpenter Brett Tutor

Sep 13, 2019
TLC’s recent revival of its hit series Trading Spaces meant new families, new projects, and some new faces! Brett Tutor joined the show as a carpenter, but he’s so much more than that. The home improvement expert is also an Army veteran, a songwriter and guitarist who performs with his brother in the b and “The Tutor Brothers”, a licensed home inspector and general contractor, and he’s even been a TV stuntman. 
 
With his many talents, we’re thrilled that he made the time to appear at the Capital Home Show. You read that right, Brett will be making his Dulles Expo Center debut September 20 and 21. Join him on our Main Stage to enjoy his presentation: "If I Can Do It, You Can Do It" Tips from a Home Inspector and Carpenter. You don’t want to miss it – trust us!
 
Can’t wait to see Brett at the show next week? We caught up ahead of his appearances for a brief Q&A (which he answered in his typical charming style). Get the scoop below!
 
Q: What’s a simple design DIY project that can provide good results?
Brett: “One easy DIY project is always painting. Design wise it is hard to get more bang for your
buck with re painting a room. Go nuts, try risky colors or designs because at the end of
the day it is still just paint!”
 
Q: You live in Austin so we can’t imagine you’d ever want to move but if you could live anywhere else where would it be?
Brett: “If I had to move to another country it would be Costa Rica. I spend a lot of time there
and between the culture, the nature and the surf it always feels like home.”
 
Q: What do you think is the biggest mistake homeowners make in renovating their space?
Brett: “The biggest mistake I see home owners make when trying to renovate their own space
is definitely under estimating the cost of materials, the time a reno takes with just two
people and the fact that you usually don’t get everything right the first time.”
 
Q: Which projects have you been most proud to work on?
Brett: “The project I have been most proud to work on is doing overseas humanitarian builds,
like one with the Peace Corps in Panama where I helped build a bathroom and a birthing
house in the remote jungle.”
 
Q: What’s your best advice for someone embarking on a reno project?
Brett: “People should take a little time to research their contractor/ designer. Experience just
means you have already made most of your mistakes, you don’t want to be one of those
mistakes of a new contractor who is still learning on the job. Make sure there are
insured and or bonded and take the time to call a reference or two.”
 
Q: What three things can’t you live without?
Brett: “The three things I can’t live without are music, good friends and surfing.”
 
Q: What question do you wish an interviewer would ask me that I have never been asked?
Brett: “If I wanted a margarita; no one has asked me that yet during an interview.”
 
 
Brett Tutor will be on the Capital Home Show Main Stage on Friday, September 20 at 2pm and Saturday, September 21 at 12pm and 3pm. Get your tickets now and start planning your visit!
 

Gardening In Georgia

Sep 13, 2019

Georgia gardeners enjoy lengthy growing seasons, thanks to our warm climate, but did you know fall is the best time to plant in our area?  Warm soil temperatures and cooler days are ideal for new plants to establish healthy root systems before winter sets in.  And, whether your garden grows in pots on the patio, or spreads out across your yard, the Fall Atlanta Home Show is the perfect place to gather ideas and talk to the experts.

Gardening gloves and yellow flowers

This year, for the first time, the Show will feature the UGA Extension Plant Market, where you can buy plants provided by Athens Wholesale Nursery.  Adjacent to the market will be the Ask a Master Gardener booth, staffed by gardening experts eager to answer your questions and share their horticulture knowledge.  Be sure to check out the Outdoor Oasis and other outdoor living and landscape exhibits at the Show, too, and bring your camera to record plant combinations you might want to try at home.

A Canadian Eco-Friendly Home

Sep 11, 2019

You already use reusable shopping bags, compost, and buy as few packaged products as possible; all in an effort to help the environment. What if you could live in a home that not only saves energy and money, but is stylish and affordable? What about a green home?

To be considered green, a home should use at least 24% less energy than a conventional home. Still not convinced it’s easy being green? Here are some homes from across the country that may inspire you!

Container Homes 

That’s right. These homes are made from shipping containers; and the results are stunning, all while saving 28% off the price of building a home and five years' worth of electricity. Most often built on a concrete foundation, container homes require little energy and are easily adapted to sustainable energy sources like solar panels. As the containers are airtight, they are also incredibly energy efficient. If you’re looking to build a new home, why not think outside the box? This family in Hamilton did!

Plastic Bottle Home

 

On Nova Scotia’s southwest shore, you can find this home that is made of 600,000 recycled pop bottles. After being shredded, melted and formed into custom moulds, the walls are now 15 centimeters thick – and it only took seven hours to put them up! While you might think a home made of plastic bottles wouldn’t do well in the windy Maritimes, it has been tested to withstand the winds of a Category 5 hurricane. Not only are the walls strong, they are well insulated; saving the homeowner up to $80,000 over 25 years.

Passive Design Homes

Did you know that the most energy efficient home in the world was built in 1977 in Regina, Saskatchewan? Nowadays, passive homes are green buildings constructed using a set of international design standards that see them using 90% less energy than standard buildings. The passive home style has gained popularity in Europe as the basic, square layout minimizes exposure to the elements while creating an airtight space. Passive homes are so insulated that you could heat them with a hair dryer! Check out these passive apartments here in Ottawa.

 

Straw Bale Home

 

You can huff and puff all you want, but you can’t blow this house down! Homes have been built from straw for hundreds of years, but there has been a steady revival of this building method and Ontario has been at the forefront. The stacked bales are placed on a foundation and then covered in either stucco, a lime-based solution, or clay. Not only are these homes structurally sound, they are incredibly well insulated. But don’t take our word for it – check out this Calgary home!

Refresh Your Space for Fall

Sep 09, 2019
As soon as September hits most folks are immediately ready to ditch their shorts for sweaters, grab a pumpkin spice whatever, and deck the halls for fall. In reality, it actually stays fairly warm for most of the month and well into October, so this sudden season switch can have its disadvantages – we see you sweating in that wool scarf! Is there a better way to transition from summer to fall? Aside from reminding everyone to dress for the weather we’re having not the weather you want, we’ve got four simple tips to help you slowly bring fall into your home. Check ‘em out below and get ready for a cool and comfortable autumn.

Fall

Rich Colors
Moving away from bright hues to more rich, earthy colors helps to create a fall feeling and evoke a sense of coziness. Now we aren’t encouraging you to go as far as painting your walls, but instead to try using your accent pieces to incorporate these tones into your space.

Inviting Accessories
Another easy way you can add that fall feeling to your home is through the use of cozy accessories. Time to bring out your throws, plush pillows, and candles! Autumn scents (think cinnamon and clove), rich colors (like we mentioned above), and inviting textures and patterns will all contribute to the theme and mood of your space.

Accessories

Nature
Bringing natural elements indoors is always a great way to put some fun seasonal flare in your space, but when it comes to slowly transitioning into fall weather subtlety is key. Skip the pumpkins and myriad of tiny gourds (save them for October and November) and try more for more neutral naturals, like sunflowers, orange roses, and helenium.

Flower

Get Organized
The best way to bring fall into your home is to get organized and put away your summer accessories. How should you decide what stays and goes? If you aren’t expecting to use it until the spring, it’s time to store it. Need help getting started? Check out our blog on clearing out closet clutter.

We hope these tips help you get ready for the change in seasons. What’s your favorite thing about fall? Ours has to be the start of Home Show season! Check out our Event Calendar to see where and when Marketplace Events will be this fall – and to get some exclusive ticket deals and insider info.

Meet Our Headliners - Including HGTV Celebrity Contractor Bryan Baeumler

Sep 06, 2019

With the Vancouver Fall Home Show fast approaching, we’ve got some exciting experts for you on the HGTV Canada Main Stage this year! With some of HGTV Canada’s hottest stars including Bryan Baeumler of Island of Bryan and Sabrina Smelko of Save My Reno, as well as local favourites Jamie Banfield and Sarah Gallop, our stellar line-up is not one to miss! Join us at this year’s Vancouver Fall Home Show at the Vancouver Convention Centre - West from October 24-27.

Bryan Baeumler

Canada’s favourite handyman, Bryan Baeumler, has been living in the Bahamas with his family, where he is filming season 2 of HGTV Canada's Island of Bryan. Viewers watched the crew restore a small abandoned resort on South Andros Island throughout season 1 in record numbers, and you can get the chance to see him at the Vancouver Fall Home Show in person! Bryan will be sharing stories from the island life and some of the lessons he’s learned over the years as he appears live on stage on Friday, October 25, 2019 at 7PM and Saturday, October 26, 2019 at 1PM.

Sabrina Smelko

Sabrina Smelko of HGTV Canada’s Save My Reno will be making her Vancouver Fall Home Show debut this October! Squamish-based designer tackles every project with a problem-solving, aesthetics-based approach. Sabrina will be presenting at the show as she shares how to achieve a happy holistic home. Catch her onstage on Saturday, October 26 at 2PM and Sunday, October 27 at 2PM.

Stay tuned for the HGTV Canada Main Stage schedule and get excited to see local favourites join our headlining stars at this year’s Vancouver Fall Home Show! Prepare by getting your tickets ahead of time to save $2!

Fall Maintenance: 4 Chores to Protect Your Home

Sep 06, 2019
Although it might not feel like it at the moment, fall and cooler temperatures are on the horizon. Summer’s reach may seem to extend into September, but before we know it leaves will be begin to fall, the wind will start to pick up, and sweaters will become a necessity.

Before fall hits in full force, consider taking care of the following home maintenance items. These are simple chores that can go a long way in protecting your home and your family during the cooler months. Completing them now, while they are less of a hassle, as opposed to in the future when you may be faced with turbulent weather and other obstacles, is a smart move.

Gutters

It’s a good idea to clean your gutters or eaves every few months. Dirt and debris can easily accumulate in these spaces over time, preventing water from properly flowing through them. Gutters exist to collect precipitation and move it away from the home. When rain can’t move through your gutters it will spill over onto your roof, which can cause leaks and water damage. Long story short, cleaning your gutters regularly can save you a lot of money and frustration.

Maintenance_Gutters

Cracks/Windows

If you don’t seal foundation and window frame cracks in your home you may notice autumn’s cooler temperatures sooner than your neighbors. Caulking cracks not only helps to keep warm air in and cold air out, it also helps protect your space from rodents looking for a winter home. Fall is the time when our furry frenemies start looking for places to survive the winter. Help make sure you aren’t unsuspectingly sharing your space by sealing cracks – or as rats/mice see them: entryways!

Maintenance_Caulking

Smoke/Carbon Monoxide Detectors

We encourage readers to test their smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms on almost every maintenance blog we write. Here’s why: it’s really important! These devices save lives, yet they are so easily overlooked. To help make sure they’re functioning properly they should be tested every month, and their batteries should be changed twice a year. 

Maintenance_SmokeAlarm
Image via Bob Villa

Pro Tip: Change your smoke detector batters when you change your clocks for Daylight Saving’s time. It happens twice a year, and you’re already going around your home resetting the clocks – it’s the perfect time to get it done.

Organizing Storage

Seasonal changes are the perfect time to get some organizing done. As you put away your summer clothes and bring your jackets and boots out of storage, why not switch other storage items around? You can restructure your storage spaces to bring upcoming holiday decorations to a more accessible spot, and move summer stuff to the back. It’s also a great time to assess your stuff. What summer items did you use or wear this season? What stayed on the shelf? Get rid of unused or unwanted items while the memories are fresh, instead of during spring cleaning when you’re excited about the potential of using/wearing these things during the warmer weather.

Maintenance_Storage
Image via Brit + Co
Once your maintenance is complete, it’s time to update the inside of your home for fall. Get decor ideas and inspiration to help refresh your space at the Marketplace Events Home Show nearest you. Connect with us on Facebook to see what events are happening in your area and get exclusive ticket discounts. Happy Fall Y’all!

2for1_FBPromo

Small Space Tips from local KonMari consultant Helen Youn

Sep 04, 2019

Are you one of many Calgarians moving into a smaller space? Although the thought of living comfortably and finding a way to store everything can be overwhelming at first, living in a small space can actually be a blessing in disguise. Calgary's only KonMari Certified consultant, Helen Youn, is here to give you her top three tips for how to make the most of living in a small space and sparking joy in your humble abode.

Ask yourself: Can I fold it?

If the answer is yes, then fold it! Many people associate KonMari folding with clothes, but did you know that anything soft can be folded? This includes reusable bags, plastic bags, table linens, bedding, laundry bags and more! By folding these items, you reduce their volume and are able to create more space in your home.

Stand it upright

When you store items vertically, you can see what you have at a glance and it's easier to access. This can be applied to hanging clothing, as well as books, kitchen items, and even your laptop! As a bonus, household items stored vertically also take up a lot less space.

Think like a bento

When it comes to storage, using boxes to create compartments really helps with organization. By storing similar items together, or items which have similar uses in one box, you are able to clearly see what you have. It also becomes easier to keep things organized because everything has a specific home.

For more tips on small space living, make sure you catch Helen at the Calgary Fall Home Show at the BMO Centre at Stampede Park on the HGTV Canada Main Stage on Friday, September 20 at 5 p.m. and again on Saturday, September 21 at 6 p.m. Helen will be sharing her insight on fall cleaning, Marie 'KonMari' Kondo Style. While you're at the show, don't forget to stop by our brand new feature, Small Space - Maximum Style, designed by WW Design Studio, to see some of our best small space tips in action. Buy your tickets online today and save $2.

 

Bryan Baeumler is Coming to Calgary

Aug 29, 2019

We’re so excited to introduce our headliner and HGTV Canada Celebrity Contractor, Bryan Baeumler! We are also thrilled to announce our partnership with Bryan as he appears at our shows in Calgary and across Canada. Ahead of his presentations at the Calgary Fall Home Show in September, we talked to Canada’s favourite handyman and got his take on how best to approach a renovation. As you prepare to tackle all those projects you’ve been meaning to get to, we asked Bryan three burning questions to get you inspired before the show!

Bryan Baeumler

1. What is your favourite thing about participating in the home shows across Canada?

Bryan: “It’s great to connect with people at the shows, see new products and suppliers, and share my experiences and stories from behind the scenes. There’s always lots of questions!”

2. What is your biggest piece of advice to people renovating their homes?

Bryan: “I always tell people to see the real value in their homes – the things behind the walls that increase efficiency, reduce operating and maintenance costs, improve the health of the home and it’s inhabitants! I would also say how to properly plan, budget and execute a renovation to avoid the common pitfalls.”

Bryan Baeumler

3. What is the biggest home improvement project to tackle in the fall?

Bryan: “You can really tackle any project any time of the year, but getting into the attic to add some insulation or vapour seal is a good one, once the heat of the Summer has broken it’s a little more comfortable to work up there and it prepares you for a warm efficient winter.”

Want to get more advice and hear from Bryan’s adventures in the Bahamas? Come on out to see Bryan, presented by Pete the Plumber, at the Calgary Fall Home Show on the Main Stage on Friday, September 20 at 6pm and again on Saturday, September 21 at 1pm. You can also enter our Ask Bryan Sweepstakes for the chance to have Bryan answer your home improvement question and our Meet Bryan Sweepstakes to win a trip to Vancouver, BC to meet the HGTV Canada star. Good luck! 

5 Storage Ideas to Make the Most of Your Space

Aug 28, 2019

#1 Hanging storage 

 Hanging things on the wall can free up a lot more space than you might think. Try to hang anything that comes in pairs or multiples – shoes, pots and pans in the kitchen, utensils, jewellery – the list goes on. Not only will it be easier to find these things once they are hung up, they’ll be out of the way and can free up some prime real estate on kitchen counters or in closets. Hanging these items will also help you keep a good inventory of your personal belongings. Even though they should be covered under your policy if they get damaged in the event of a loss, it’s a good idea to keep track of everything (especially the expensive stuff). Just in case!

 Alternatively, use hanging storage units or organizers that can easily be hung up behind doors, in closets or above counters in kitchens. Feeling creative? DIY and hang items in a fun way using baskets, rope, painted tin cans… whatever fits your aesthetic. And, in the event of a loss (let’s say – a flood or a fire), you might be covered under your condo policy for damage that happens to any improvements or unit installments you’ve made.

 TIP: If there’s just not enough wall space, store small appliances that you don’t use often in a storage locker. And just a heads up, your personal belongings that are storage are still covered by your condo insurance policy.

 #2 Under bed storage

 Beds can take up a lot of room in small spaces – but don’t feel like you should sacrifice your luxury king-size mattress for extra storage room. Utilizing the space underneath your bed is the way to go! There’s plenty of options that have multiple functionalities and will end up solving more than one problem. For example, if you don’t have room for a dresser, there’s bed frames with drawers you can put your clothes in. You can also use baskets, boxes or plastic storage units for more long-term storage items that you don’t need every day.

 Depending how much time and resources you have, you could also DIY loft-style or Murphy beds – but we’d only recommend this if you have really limited space. 

 TIP: If you plan on building your own bed frame, loft bed or Murphy bed, be sure to do so in a safe way. Make sure everything is installed properly (especially if guests will be using it). Should anything go wrong, your liability coverage will have your back.  

 

 #3 Under table storage

 Hear us out with this one… you can use wicker baskets or cool, vintage crate boxes that fit under tables to store things. You can “hide” them under side tables in your bedroom, or coffee tables in the living room. It’s a great way to utilize storage that isn’t so obvious!

 #4 Bike storage

Chances are, if you’re a city dweller you own and rely on a bike to get around. If not, you might be holding off because, well – where in the world do you store it? Cyclists are often stuck with leaving their bikes outside, leaving at risk for theft (which, by the way, is covered under your condo policy up to a certain amount). Hanging bike racks are also a great storage option for cyclists. They can be pretty affordable and easy to install, and can save you some extra hallway or closet space!

 TIP: If your bike is on the pricier side, you might have to add it to your policy as a special belonging. Also, if you own a car while living in a condo, you might be able to save on your insurance premium by bundling your policies!

 #5 Recycle it

 Donating and recycling your belongings is a sure-fire way to free up space. Your condo can’t get cluttered if there’s nothing to clutter it! Purge your closet and donate any old clothes, or even try using buy and sell websites to sell appliances, gadgets, or other things you don’t use any more. While some items might be hard to part with, you’ll feel a lot better with less clutter (we promise).

 

Green is the New Black: Trends in Eco-chic decorating

Aug 21, 2019

Forget leather sofas, faux fur rugs, and marble coffee tables, because the new home buzz is sustainable luxury. The eco-chic movement has emerged and proved that it’s here to stay, and for good reason too; there’s no better way than to stay trendy and help the environment at the same time.

If you want to hop on with the newest décor craze, here are four of the most popular fads in eco-friendly style that will inspire you to green up your home!

Don’t be Bamboozled!

Bamboo is one of the earth’s most easily renewable resources; it grows quickly, needing few pesticides, fertilization and irrigation, and can be harvested without impacting the surrounding environment. Bamboo creates a natural, zen-like feel and is not only sleek and attractive, but also durable and weather resistant. Its adaptability makes it fit to be molded into anything you desire, such as bowls, bookstands, and tables. 

 Hey Siri, print me a sofa!

3D printing is creating a huge rumble and is predicted to turn the furniture industry upside down. It’s extremely versatile; capable of creating endless shapes, designs, and structures that would be very difficult if not impossible to manufacture using other methods. It’s also highly customizable and will provide your home with a contemporary, futuristic vibe. Not to mention, 3D printing is much more cost effective and environmentally sustainable for companies to produce. 

Turn on your Inner Artist

Painting is one of the most efficient yet simple ways to set the mood of any room and is essential to any home redecoration. However, you’re probably familiar with that strong, chemical-like odor from a freshly painted room, which comes from volatile organic compounds (VOC) found in most oil or latex-based paints. Prolonged exposure to VOCs can result in long-term health problems such as degrading of the liver and central nervous system. On the other hand, eco-friendly paints are designed to contain low levels of VOC and are much safer to use indoors. Most eco-friendly paints are made from natural, renewable resources such as milk and clay, making them much more sustainable and safer. When shopping for eco-friendly paint, make sure it’s been certified by the GREENGUARD Environmental Institute. 

Reuse and Recycle

Looking to redecorate your home to fit the eco-chic trend? Why not repurpose your old furniture! In case you missed it, upcycling and repurposing is huge in the home decorating community and is a great way to show off your creativity! Not only is upcycling pro-green, it will also save you money. Grab some paint and superglue and get to transforming. If you’re looking for somewhere to get inspired, visit  https://habitatgo.com/restore/

Feeling inspired to green up your home? For more info, feel free to contact us via our Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, and don’t forget to swing by the Ottawa Fall Home Show, September 26-29th!

Four Facelifts for Your Home in 2019

Aug 16, 2019

Just because it’s August, doesn’t mean it’s too late in the year to give your home a little love. And while a full kitchen remodel might be beyond your capabilities (or budget), there are several “facelifts” you can do for various areas of your home to improve its appearance. Consider the following upgrades:

Kitchen Countertops and Backsplashes – A lot of time is spent in the kitchen, so it’s important to have it be a welcoming, comfortable place. Two design details people always notice are the types of countertops and the design of the backsplash. As quartz becomes the new “gold standard” for counters, look at bargain-priced granite for an impressive-appearing upgrade. Backsplashes are easier than you think to install! Find a tile that compliments the rest of your kitchen and don’t be afraid to embrace eye-catching patterns or colors.

Bathroom

Bathroom Tops, Tiles and Fixtures – Another area to consider updating is your bathroom. Whether it’s the master bath or a guest bathroom, these are places that can benefit from relatively small changes. Bright brass fixtures in every room? Look for “antique brass” as a trending alternative. While it still maintains the general aesthetic, antique brass provides a lived-in natural look.

Cabinet Makeover – Your home renovation list requires some tough prioritizing. Do you want new granite countertops or beautifully stained hardwood cabinets? A good compromise can be choosing to refinish your existing cabinets. If they’re painted, consider stripping the paint off and staining them. Handles are easy and inexpensive to replace. A transformation doesn’t require ripping your existing cabinets out, just a little reimagining.

Fresh Coat of Paint – Never (ever) underestimate the power of a fresh coat of paint! If your walls haven’t been touched in several years, they’ve probably accumulated a layer of dust and grime that’s keeping them from looking their best. If you don’t want to change colors, no problem. Check to see if you have some of the existing shade. The difference will be noticeable!

Looking for more advice on projects to do yourself, or source out to a contractor? Local experts will be on-hand to answer any and all of your questions at the Austin Home & Garden Show, August 23-25 at the Austin Convention Center. Join us for a weekend full of home improvement ideas and inspiration. 

Meet HGTV's Matt Muenster

Aug 15, 2019

Matt Muenster received his degree in Interior Design from the University of Wisconsin - Madison and practiced design professionally for almost 10 years before a chance phone call sent his career in a bit of a different direction. A local producer looking for a designer to host a new renovation show opened the door to a whole new way for Matt to bring design into the world. You may know Matt best for his work over the past decade hosting shows on HGTV and DIY Network.

Matt Muenster

Q: What was your most memorable home project for yourself or work?
Matt: "Burning a tree tattoo into a wall of reclaimed barnwood during an episode of Bath Crashers in Austin, TX." 

Q: If you could only use one which would you choose: Facebook, Instagram or Snapchat? Why?
Matt: "Instagram - Snapchat has never interested me and Facebook has lost its way with me. Insta is the fastest way to visually share whats happening with me." 

You can follow Matt on Instagram at @mattmuenster. You should probably follow us too if you aren't - @homeshows.

Q: What are your best tips to help homeowners with curb appeal year-round?
Matt: "Maintenance. No matter what your yard/home has going for it, if it's not well kept - no one will be able to see it."

Q: What’s the best way for homeowners to incorporate the latest trends into their décor? How can you tell what has staying power and what doesn’t?
Matt: "I don’t play in the world of trends. My philosophy is to listen to your gut when it comes to style - do what you like regardless of what some expert in a magazine says is currently cool. Then, execute. Do it well and no one will question why you did what you did."   

Get more home advice from Matt Muenster when you see him LIVE at the Austin Home & Garden Show, August 23-25 at the Austin Convention Center. He’ll be presenting Matt's Crash Course on our Main Stage Friday, Saturday and Sunday! Guests can talk through their home projects with Matt as part of a 10 minute one-on-one consultation. Don't miss your chance to get real advice from this HGTV and DIY Network expert!

Better in the Shade

Aug 14, 2019

If you’ve purchased an older home, this is the season when you notice how much heat is leaking through old windows. And while new windows come with an array of positive features, it can be an expensive and time-consuming process to replace an entire house of them.

Window

Window shades are a great compromise for your budget and time. Here are a few things to consider if you're thinking about upgrading this area of your home:

Automation/Motorization - "Smart home" features continue to become more popular.
 When installing new shades, opting for a model that comes with a remote feature could add more value to your home.

Child Safety - New legislation is being finalized in some states that will outlaw any shades from using cords. Older shades may pose a choking hazard to young children and should be replaced with the new cordless options.
 We suggest choosing a shade without a cord. 

Energy Efficiency – Is the cost of this upgrade holding you back? Consider it an investment. Adding window shades can increase insulation and help reduce heating/cooling costs.


Style/Design – Shades are so much more than the typical wooden blinds of yesteryear! They now come in an almost overwhelming array of fabrics and configurations. This upgrade will not only help keep you more comfortable, it could also improve the look of your home.

Consulting with a professional is often the best way to get a feel for what’s right for you. We suggest meeting local window experts at the Austin Home & Garden Show, August 23-25 at the Austin Convention Center. Get the scoop on what all your window options, as well as other upgrades you can tackle to improve your space. 

Austin Home & Garden Show Tips

Aug 13, 2019

Whether you’re enjoying a presentation at our Main Stage or vetting contractors for a massive home renovation, there’s plenty to do and see at the Austin Home & Garden Show! We want you to have an incredible time, so we’ve compiled a list of a few helpful things to know. These essentials are handy for a first-timer, or someone who's been to the show for years.

Austin Home & Garden Show

- Parking is FREE, but there are limited spaces available. We suggest you arrive early to get a good spot and enjoy a full day at the show. Doors open at 2pm on Friday, 10am on Saturday, and 11am on Sunday.

- Buying tickets online automatically saves you money! Tickets are $8 online, or you can buy for $10 at the door. Click here to buy your tickets. When you buy online, you'll get an email with your tickets. You can print it off or show the email on your phone to enter the show. 

- Not smartphone savvy? Be sure to bring a notepad to jot down notes while talking to vendors. It’s an easy way to keep track of estimated costs and options. 

- Don't worry about hitting the show floor on an empty stomach. There are food and beverages available for purchase at the concession stand.

- Luck favors the prepared! Have your top projects in mind so you don’t forget to visit everyone on your checklist.

- The Austin Convention Center is going to be full of hundreds of local home pros. Be sure to wear comfortable shoes, since you'll be doing quite a bit of walking. 

We hope you have a wonderful time at the show! Have a Home Show tip you swear by that wasn't mentioned here? Be sure to share it with us on Twitter (@austinhomeshows) and in our Facebook Event!

A Beginner's Guide to Upcycling

Aug 12, 2019

If you’re a fan of do-it-yourself (DIY) projects, you’re probably familiar with the term “upcycling.” It refers to the process of repurposing items you already own to create something artistic and useful. While Pinterest is full of upcycling inspiration, these tips will help you get started on manageable projects that are fun for the entire family!

DIY project

Start Small – Transforming those pallets of wood in your basement into reclaimed wooden furniture sounds like a fun (and impressive) beginning to your upcycling adventures, but often it can require considerable skill and technical know-how. Begin with something your kids can do, so you have the opportunity to hone your skills before embarking on a more formidable task.

Keep a Tight Budget – The whole purpose of upcycling is to recycle stuff you already own. Resist the urge to spend a lot of money on additional materials. For most projects you probably already have the items you’ll need. If you don’t t have everything, track your purchases and keep them to a minimum.

Make It a Party – Easy upcycling undertakings are a great opportunity to bond with family, friends and neighbors. Identify an item a lot of people have but aren’t using and invite people over for a craft night. At the end of the day, upcycling is all about finding beauty in the reuse of your possessions.

Austin Home & Garden Show

Get more ideas, inspiration and advice for upgrading your home at the Austin Home & Garden Show, happening August 23-25 at the Austin Convention Center. Discover the latest home trends, connect with hundreds of local professionals, and find everything you need to transform your space. We can't wait to see you at the show!

Home Trends to Try this Fall

Aug 08, 2019

Fall is approaching and as we move into the new season, it’s time to refresh your space to set the tone for the rest of the year with some of the timeliest trends. With a focus on sustainability, comfort, and organization, our top three trends are meant to make you feel great in your space. At the upcoming Calgary Fall Home Show, we’ll also have you covered with expert advice and the best brands in the business. Taking place Sept. 19 to 22 at the BMO Centre, it’s not one to miss!

Sustainable Living

1. Sustainable Living
Feel good with our first trend for fall! Using sustainable or recycled materials in your home is a great place to start and it also reduces your carbon footprint. Materials such as bamboo, hemp, and seagrass are all fantastic options and also offer a gorgeous aesthetic. If you’re looking for sustainable solutions to make your home more eco-friendly, we’ve got plenty of options for you at our Small Space - Maximum Style feature courtesy of The Apothecary at the show so don’t forget to stop by!

Cozy Vibes

2. Cozy Vibes
Every fall we want to make our spaces cozier - and for good reason - is adding a cozy touch to your place. While the weather outside is frightful, make sure your home is delightful! Thick wool throws offer a beautiful look to your space, but are also functional when your space gets cold. Add some timeless elegance and comfort with velvet cushions as you prepare to spend more time indoors. With all this cozy, you won’t even notice the cold weather outside (and your space will look seasonally stylish).

Helen Youn

3. Less is More
As more and more Calgarians start moving to smaller spaces, the need to downsize and declutter becomes more prevalent. Even if you have a larger space, you can still embrace minimalism. The KonMari Method is a great way to edit your space into only having the items you truly love. Intrigued? Visit us at the show where we’ll have KonMari expert Helen Youn sharing advice about how to tidy up this season on Friday, September 20 at 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, September 21 at 6:00p.m.

For even more inspiration and advice on how to reinvent your space for fall, visit the Calgary Fall Home Show at the BMO Centre at Stampede Park from Sept. 19 to 22, 2019. Buy your tickets online today and save $2!

Arizona Bridal Show Survival Guide

May 15, 2019
The Arizona Bridal Show returns to the Phoenix Convention Center, South Building on Sunday, June 2. With 350+ vendors to connect with and lots to see and sample, we caught up with Wedding Planner Kim Horn to help you make the most of your visit to the show. Here's what Kim recommends:

Arizona Bridal Show

Bridal shows allow you to meet, compare, discuss, and hire wedding vendors (some have show specials for a limited time) at one location at one time. You may taste cakes, view sites, try on gowns, hear DJs, see and smell floral, and much more. These wedding planning tips are priceless to make your “Bridal Show Experience” productive!

1). Pre-register and purchase tickets in advance vs. waiting in lines the day of the show.

2). Download the BrideScan app, and build your profile. BrideScan allows you to scan potential wedding pros and brides you meet during a bridal show via QR code. No more sorting through business cards or writing your name, wedding date, and email address on their forms! BrideScan allows you to view the vendors by category (caterers, cakes, etc.).

3). Create a wedding email.

4). Know the show schedule (fashion shows, opening, and ending times) to plan your day. Shows normally are less busy the first hours of opening.

5). Bring the people involved in making major decisions for your wedding.

6). Take photos and video of everything you love.

7). Bring a reusable bag to carry hand-outs and samples.

8). Wear comfortable shoes since you will be walking and standing on your feet for hours.

9). Bring your calendar so you may book appointments.

10). Bring cash and your check book to take advantage of show discounts on site.

11). Bring your color swatches if you still need a designer, florist, and bakery.

12). Make a list of priorities of products and services you need the most.

13). Some vendors may be able to book one or two weddings a day which will make them book more quickly. Photographers, DJs, wedding planners, florists, and videographers may be examples of this vendor type. Other vendors may be able to book multiple weddings on the same day. Keep this in mind when organizing your priorities.

14). Stay until the end of the show, you may be able to have props which are leftover from the exhibitors.

For more tips and tricks to hit up the Arizona Bridal Show like a pro, be sure to subscribe to our email list and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. We can't wait to see you at the show!

About the Author
Copyright 2019, Kim Horn, MWP™ (Master Wedding Planner, 1 of 75 in the World) To hire Kim as your wedding planner, call 480.921.7891 or text your name, wedding date, and wedding planner request to 602.418.9089. Kim Horn, MWP™ Master Wedding Planner | 1 of 75 in the World Scottsdale, Paradise Valley, Chandler, Phoenix and Destination Weddings Publisher | Pres. | ArizonaBridalSource.com Sponsor | ArizonaBridalShow.com AZ State Coordinator | Assoc. of Bridal Consultants May 2003 – May 2012 ABC 2010 Conference Chair worked with David Tutera O 480.921.7891 C 602.418.9089 E info@ArizonaBridalSource.com ArizonaBridalSource.com

 

Sublime Summer Space Savers: 6 Perfect Petite Patios

Apr 24, 2019
With the start of summer just around the corner folks are being bombarded with tips and ideas for their backyards. Most of us love spending the warmer months outdoors – but what do you do if you have really limited outdoor space? Sure, you’d hang a chandelier bird feeder with pride and invite all your friends to join you on your new extra large outdoor sofa, but just you don’t have room. Fear not. We’ve found six fun and easy ideas for your petite patios that’ll have you saying, “space schmace”. Check ‘em out below and get ready for summer.

Rugged Beauty – We’ve all accepted the idea of outdoor furniture being more than simply plastic chairs, right? Well, we’re encouraging homeowners to take this concept one step further and invest in outdoor rugs. They allow you to have more fun with your color scheme and create a cohesive look for your small space.

Outdoor Rugs

Playful Pallets – There’s lots to love when it comes to pallet furniture. It’s great for the environment, has such a fun and funky feel, and is fairly customizable. That last point has huge implications for your outdoor space. If you’ve got a little or uniquely shaped outdoor area, create furniture that’ll fit it perfectly.

Pallet Furniture\

Textured Treat – Add depth to your area without taking up too much room. Use blankets and pillows to create an inviting seating area, even though you don’t have space for a couch. The variety in fabrics and patterns will make things more luxurious.

Pillows and Blankets

Harmonious Hangout – You create the ideal space for hanging out when you make space for your stuff to hang. Maximizing vertical space can save you a lot in the long run.

Vertical Space

Layered Love – Perfection is all in the details, and we’re loving this tiered herb garden. Not only do the herbs add gorgeous greenery to your balcony, they’ll make your cooking more delicious, and having them on a rack means you aren’t sacrificing too much space.

Garden

Beautiful Bed – Ok, we might never get up if we had this on our patio, but that’s kind of the point, isn’t it? Just because you don’t have room for large furniture, doesn’t mean you have to get only teeny tiny pieces. We love the idea of the “half day bed”. It’s a nice, big, comfy piece – it’s just not as large as its counterparts.

Bed

We hope these balconies have inspired you to tackle your small space and make the most out of your outdoor decor. For more tips and ideas, make sure to connect with @HomeShows on Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. Have a small space you’ve styled nicely? Share a snap with us! We’d love to see what you’ve created.

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