With today’s technology, laminate flooring is a strong alternative to hardwood. While the look of laminate and hardwood flooring may be similar, knowing the differences between laminate and hardwood flooring will help you make the best choice for your home and budget.
We all know how light affects our moods. What if you could design with light, preserve your fantastic view and protect your floors from harmful UV rays? We say “No Problem!”
Some allergens are more common outdoors, like pollen and mold spores, while others are more common indoors, like dust mites and animal dander. All allergen sources, however, can be present anywhere at any time. And because the cost of air-borne allergy-related illnesses can be staggering – up to $17.5 billion in health care costs and more than 6 million work and school days lost each year – it is in your best interest to prevent and minimize allergy triggers whenever possible.
While outdoor allergens can be hard to control, there are ways to minimize the impact of allergens that occur indoors. Frequent dusting, vacuuming and washing will minimize many indoor allergens, but these activities also can stir them up as well. One way to prevent allergens altogether is to eliminate many of the areas where they can gather. Flooring is one example.
Flooring is one area of the indoor environment where the amount of indoor allergens can be controlled. Certain types of flooring, such as carpet, are simply better gathering places for allergens. Small microorganisms, pollen, dust, dust mites, mold, animal dander, and other substances tend to accumulate in carpet fibers. Other flooring types, such as wood, tend to minimize the accumulation of allergens because there are no fibers to trap these substances. Taking steps to minimize these kinds of allergens can result in improved indoor air quality.
When it comes to flooring, the Environmental Protection Agency finds that hardwood floors improve indoor air quality. This is because hardwood floors do not harbor microorganisms or pesticides that can be tracked in from outdoors. In addition, hardwood floors also minimize the accumulation of dust, mold and animal dander. Both of these findings result in improved indoor air quality.
Clean floors last. It’s best to clean rooms from the top down so that any dust and debris won’t find their way onto a newly-cleaned floor.
Dry mop/dust floors. Use a microfiber dusting cloth or a vacuum to remove the initial layer of dust and debris on floors. If you are using a vacuum, avoid using the beater bar so the vacuum’s brush doesn’t damage the floor.
Spray mop floors. Use a cleaning solution designed for your floor type. Avoid DIY vinegar solutions or steam mopping your floors since they both can damage your floor’s finish leaving it to look dull and cloudy. If your mop doesn’t have a spray function, fill your cleaning solution in a spray bottle and spray floors a bit at a time to avoid an excess amount of liquid on your floors.
Apply a new coat of polish. Now that your floors are clean and dry, applying a coat of polish is a great way to revitalize your floor’s finish. A coat of polish can even out a floor’s look, filling in any small scratches and adding a new protective layer on top of your floor.
Here are some tips that can help protect your floors even more.
- Use floor mats and area rugs to protect high traffic areas. If using mats and rugs, try to get rugs and mats with a natural rubber backing since some materials can discolor floors after extended use.
- Protect floors from sun damage. Rearrange furniture or use curtains to protect floors from fading and UV damage.
- Protect furniture legs with appropriate pads and covers. Felt or rubber pads can help avoid scratches from accidental dragging of furniture on your floors.
- The best way to revitalize your floors is with a deep clean. A good deep clean can get into the seams of the floor where normal spray mopping can’t.
Are you ready to blow the dust off those holiday decorations stored in your attic or basement? Cooler weather reminds us that Thanksgiving and other holiday gatherings are just around the corner. How will you gain inspiration for decorating your home this year? Here are a few events around the metro Atlanta area to check out.
Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles 10th Annual Home for the Holidays (Nov. 15-Dec. 9, 2018)
Located on a 1.5-acre lot in Buckhead, this year’s showcase is a new English country home with a locally sourced limestone and brick exterior, five bedrooms and an expansive loggia with a fireplace and separate grilling terrace that overlooks the pool. Tour proceeds benefit Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.
Roswell Woman’s Club 2nd Annual Holiday Home Tour (Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018)
This holiday-themed event includes five beautiful homes in Roswell. Tickets are $35.
Grant Park 38th Annual Candlelight Tour of Homes (Dec. 8-9, 2018)
Imagine being greeted with the warm glow of candles and holiday lights at every stop. Founded in 1885, the neighborhood consists largely of original Victorian, Queen Anne and Craftsman homes that were constructed between 1885–1910. The Grant Park neighborhood became Atlanta’s largest historic district in 2000. Since its conception, the tour has grown and evolved into a fundraiser for three community organizations: St. Paul United Methodist Church, the Grant Park Cooperative Preschool and the Grant Park Parent’s Network.
Georgia Governor’s Mansion Holiday Tours (Various dates)
The holiday season kicks off with a Tree Lighting Ceremony on Sunday, Dec. 2 at 6 p.m. Holidays tours are scheduled Dec. 3-8 (9:30-11 a.m.); Dec. 9 (2-4 p.m.); and Dec. 10-14 (9:30-11 a.m.). Admission and parking are free.
What other holiday events do you hope to attend?
Here are a few pretty, colorful and practical ways to kick your bar up a notch for entertaining.
Shaw Floors has announced a full palette of colors for its 2019 Color of the Year: Whisper. The palette of five hushed neutrals will be embodied in Shaw’s 2019 hard and soft surface product introductions.
Whisper features five colors: Glacier Ice, Clay, Blush, Mist, and Dusty Lilac. Infused with a dusty softness, the approachable palette provides the neutrals consumers love with subtle pastel undertones for interest, beauty and variety. The colors are easy to integrate into a home’s design scheme and may be used alone in a space or together as a palette.
“With Whisper, we’ve moved away from our obsession with grays and are embracing colors that inject a calm, inviting serenity into the home,” said Pam Rainey, ASID, IIDA, Shaw Floors’ vice president of product design. “The palette conveys an ethereal, dreamlike environment where we can find peace and relaxation.”
Shaw Floors will launch new products in 2019 that not only coordinate with the Whisper palette, but embody the colors as well. Alongside the products, the brand will release a selection of design themes that showcase the palette in various ways.