Category: Interior Design and Decorating

Choosing Mantel Clock

There are numerous types of these timepieces available that can improve the appearance of any home. The type should be selected based on the home décor, the clock size, and the budget.

Besides this, the features of this timepiece must also need to be considered. The person buying it also needs to choose from battery-operated ones and those that need to be wound up.

Wind Up

Wind up versions usually need to be wound at least once a week. There are however, certain models that only require to be wound every fortnight. A manual switch is often included in such a timepiece that enables a person to switch off the chiming feature. Some also come equipped with an automatic night silencer feature.

Battery Operated

These are newer inventions. Battery operated versions come with a number of features, including alarm functions. While this is indeed a modern version of the clock, the design can be based on antique décor. The sound these models produce is of a very high quality but somewhat different from wind up versions.


Mantel clocks are made from a variety of materials, and this has a huge impact on not only the overall quality of the device, but also its price. Some of the materials used to create them are as follows:


Old mantel pieces were mostly made out of oak and cherry tree, and were placed on the mantle shelf often above an ‘open’ fire; over a period of time this caused the oil within the clock to ‘dry out’ and the clock stopped functioning. The material may have solid pieces or it may have been developed from wooden paneling. Traditionally, these are the ones that were made in the Americas were painted, engraved, and came fitted with a metal such as brass.


Some of the above types of clocks, are made out of porcelain and it is very common to see various designs and paintings on them. Renowned clock makers have for years created porcelain timepieces with attractive designs.

Precious Metals or Stone

Previously, some clocks were made of silver and gold and were extremely expensive. Slate and marble are the most popular stones used to create them. These, however, are heavy but showcase an intriguing appearance.

Modern Style

As compared to the antique counterparts, modern style clocks possess a lot of additional features. Many of today’s versions are designed (in appearance) to mimic antique models; however, they feature all the modern features including alarms and other features of modern day watches.

At Mels Clocks we have many different types of clocks, all of which have been carefully serviced. We buy and sell clocks together with repair and service of customers clocks.

Exterior Wall Painting

Choosing a color can be done in a variety of ways. For example you can first begin by choosing a color family which suits your taste. For example the blue color family will have a variety of shades within it, as will a yellow color family. Once you pick a shade there are a number of complementary colors to highlight your color design. For example, blue and orange are complimentary colors. Once you pick a shade of paint, it may also be available in a variety of finishes that give the color a unique sheen, for example a matte finish, or a metallic finish. There are many selections that can be made available to you.

The second purpose your home’s exterior wall paint serves is a practical purpose. Just as your home is a safeguard for you, the paints used on the exterior walls of your home serve a protective purpose. Just as you would care for yourself and your family, your home is a structure that needs to be looked after. Painting the exterior of your house at first can seem complicated. However it is more or less a simple procedure when you keep in mind some basics.

The first step in painting the exterior wall is to make sure any cracked surface is filled up with plaster and dried. After which the surface is covered in primer paint. This is followed up with top coat paints. Some special surfaces like parapets or awnings are given a few more coats of paints for additional protection. Painting the exterior of your house serves many purposes. Good exterior wall paint can increase the longevity of your home. It can also increase the value of your home. In the long run, durable exterior wall paint can save you money on your home by helping you avoid repairs.

Open Space Living Concept

The beginning of the open space concept may have begun with a pass-through from the kitchen to the dining room. The pass-through may have been revolutionary in its day, but it is a bit too closed in for today’s living.

One of the first things most people have to decide when considering the removal of an upper wall, is the cabinetry on that wall and where to store what is in those cabinets. The same is true when considering removal of floating cabinets over an island or peninsula. It may be wise to open the cabinets, evaluate what is stored in them and determine where else the items can be stored. You may even find a lot of things you considered “lost” because they were unseen and not easily accessible. The things you still need and use, albeit less frequently, can be stored in other cabinets. This exercise forces you to really access the items need to be in your home; so making careful choices is important.

If you happen to have such a pass-through and wonder how to modernize it or truly open the space, there are few things you need to consider. First, you will want your kitchen to be attractive and uncluttered enough to be on constant display. You will want your cabinetry to coordinate with the rooms to which it is open, i.e. family room, dining room.

If your cabinets are old, outdated or shabby, painting will be the easiest fix. You can consider removing some of the door fronts and keeping some open cabinetry on upper cabinets for some of your pretty or frequently used utensils. The most important thing to keep in mind with open shelves, is the view you will present to the rest of the room.

Another consideration is the lighting that will be visible from the living spaces into the kitchen area. A new, attractive light fixture might be a nice accent to add to the kitchen. Color will be another consideration; you will want the two or three combined spaces to be cohesive. The rooms need not be the same color, but they should coordinate; consider a bolder value of the same color from room to room or a graduated value of color among the three rooms. Color too will give an open concept a subtle room division.

The pass-through kitchen will require some amount of DIY skill, or you can hire a contractor. You will need to determine if the wall separating the kitchen and other rooms is load-bearing before you swing the sledge hammer. There may be electrical wires or plumbing pipes in the walls, so go slowly and check in the attic or have someone who is skilled in construction help you determine these issues. Oftentimes, a post or pillar will be necessary to hold up the end of a load-bearing wall.

When you have cabinets on the kitchen side of the pass through wall, you will want the cabinets to remain for storage, so a half wall will be your division between the rooms, still giving you a visual open space. A half wall may give you an opportunity to have a console on the living room side of the half wall, to be used for games or if it is a dining space, a buffet server for parties.

Colour Combinations for Home

Different spaces in the house will demand different kinds of color combinations. The different rooms of the house need to be painted keeping in mind the utility of the space, as well as the wear and tear of the area. Light walls in the children’s room for example will get dirty in a matter of minutes. So keep in mind the use of the space while selecting the wall color.

Color matching is the best way to ensure that the colors on the walls do not clash with each other. No one wants their walls to look like a misshapen mess. Paying attention to the colors is therefore important. It is equally important to know your color preferences. While browns may work for your friend, they may drag you down. It is therefore very essential to consider the colors being chosen for the room.

It is possible to paint the house keeping in mind a theme. The most basic theme has always been painting all the walls of a particular room the same color. This ensures that the rooms look different and the space is well defined. But this theme does not find favor with the customer any longer.

Another theme is to have an accent wall in a contrast color combination. This is the current favorite trend in the painting of houses. The accent wall then becomes the highlight of the room. The accent wall is also painted a darker color. This can be done with a texture to the accent wall as well. On the other hand, the accent wall may be kept smooth when the other walls have a texture to them. This creates a very interesting combination too.

Painting the walls shades of a certain color is also finding takers. This is the best way to make optimum use of your favorite color. The darkest wall in this scheme will then become the accent wall. Whoever thought that eggplant and pale green will be a color combination for your walls? That is the most sought after color combination currently in vogue. So let your imagination run wild, and use the colors that best work for you.

Create a Great Dining Space

When you choose dark dining tables and chairs, adding lighter tones, splashes of color and creating a welcoming space can make sure you have a room where you can sit down as a family and enjoy a family meal each day without feeling as though the walls are closing in on you.

You can easily add color by adding light and bright blinds or curtains in the room.

This can immediately give the room a little lift, even the darkest room can enjoy the benefit of light-colored window dressings which are essential items and also highly functional, stylish and leave you with a light and bright design.

Ensure you paint the walls a lighter color, especially if you have a smaller space to work with. Darkened walls, rich in color may seem as calming, but they can turn any room into a dark dungeon.

Choose light colors that can complement your dining table and chairs while making the space feel larger and more spacious than it actually is.

Lighting is essential and a modern option is to add some beautiful pendant lights that hang over your dining table.

Your dining table are alive with light, making it easier when sitting around the table to see and speak to each other. Pendant lighting has grown in popularity and when carefully placed as a spectacular feature.

This lighting can also be beneficial to open plan dining spaces where you want to differentiate the rooms, making the dining table separate from the kitchen or living room.

Another great choice is to mix and match the chairs you place around your dining table. If you have a heavy solid wood mahogany table, choosing light-colored chairs and mixing and matching their style can create a unique design for the space.

This is done on a more regular basis these days, creating a spectacular and comfortable space that has a special design feature.

Always add a cabinet in the area. You’ll be amazed how much you will rely on this one piece of furniture and how convenient it. A cabinet is used to keep plates, cups, extra cutlery and serving dishes.

It eliminates clutter on the dining table when not in use and it also gives you more room in your kitchen for all your other items.

Ensure your cabinet blends in with the rest of the furniture items in the room, they should work together to create a spectacular place where you can entertain, enjoy family meals and make use of the space every day.

If you have a dark wooden dining table and you want to brighten it, the best way to do this is to use a light runner across the length of the table.

Runners are exceptionally useful items that can also create a great feature on the table. The runner can add some contrast to the table while also creating a stunning design when the table isn’t in use.

It takes a darkened item and adds that much-needed splash of light to brighten up the space.

Dining table size is imperative. You need to make sure you create a comfortable and functional space where you can move around with ease.

Consider the chairs around the table and see if you can get around the chairs if someone is sitting in them, this can help you decide on size and shape of the table you need to create a great dining space.

Decorate With Wallpaper Borders


Wallpaper borders come in a variety of styles, colors, patterns and sizes. But perhaps the most popular of all the styles is the floral pattern. These borders are common in modern, contemporary homes as well as in rustic country estates. The floral design evokes feelings of Spring, rebirth and all the pleasant things in life. It works best in traditional design, but the right floral patterned border can fit almost any existing decor.


Using a wallpaper border to accent an existing design is a common technique among professionals and do-it-yourselfers. It’s tempting to add a touch more style to what you’ve already put together, and the border is the right tool for the job. There are just a couple of things you need to watch out for. First, understand your colors. Get yourself a simple color wheel or download one onto your tablet so it is easy to access. This will let you know which colors will complement and which ones will clash. The study of color can get pretty complex, but just keep in mind that the primary colors yellow and blue are considered opposites. That does not mean they clash; in fact, these colors work very well together. But they are on opposite sides of the color spectrum. It’s important to understand where colors lie in relation to one another to understand which colors will go together. Borders are often made up of several colors of varying shades, but their will be a dominant color in all of them and that is what you will need to match with your existing wall, ceiling, accessories and floor.

Inside Molding

This is a technique that can have a great effect on the style of a room. It requires more work and investment than just simply applying the wallpaper border, but it pays off in dividends when it comes to style. First, the room will need a crown molding. This is a decorative strip of narrow wood fastened to the seam where the walls and ceiling meet. Another, more narrow strip of molding is then fastened beneath the crown molding. The wallpaper border is applied between the two strips of molding, producing a framed effect.

Selecting Ceramic Tile

Design Variations

It’s possible to find ceramic tile to match any color scheme or decor theme in a home. You will find pieces in soft and muted colors and textures. Bold designs and deep colors area also available. You will also find a variety of shapes such as hexagons, octagons, rectangles, and squares. Size also varies, ranging from 4.25-inch squares to as large as 24-inch squares. If you opt for handmade pieces, you may find small variations in size.


You have many different finishes from which to choose. You might opt for high-gloss, matte, smooth, glazed, unglazed, textured, polished, or unpolished. Pieces with a high-gloss finish will appear exceptionally shiny. The downside of this finish is that scratches will appear easily. The matte finish will appear dull, which can protect against scratching.


The edging will have variations. A rounded edge, known as a “cushion edge”, is harder to apply grout between its pieces. A squared edge is easier for beginners to grout. The bullnose edge is ideal for specific areas where you will leave surfaces only partially tiled with exposed edges. You might also choose scalloped edges as a special feature.


Thickness varies between 1/4 inch and 3/4 inch. In general, thicker ceramic tile is more durable. These pieces will resist cracking and breaking more readily than the thinner ones.

Color Variations

Manufacturers try to limit color differences by packing similar shades together in cartons. Packaging will also have shade and run numbers stamped on them to enable consumers to purchase similar color runs. Some people opt to embrace color variations, trying to produce bold differences intentionally to create a unique look.


It’s likely that you will find some imperfections. Always choose pieces without chipping, pitting, and spotting on the surface. If you find these imperfections, they indicate problems with glaze application. It’s possible that glaze missed certain areas, or dirt could have been introduced onto the surface during the process. Manufacturers will assess and separate by grade according to imperfections. Resist the urge to purchase low-grade pieces, as you will likely get tiles with pitting, cracking, or spots.

Role Of Backsplash

The backsplash is often seen as the vertical extension of many counters yet it is a lot more than this. It is often installed for wall protection. A lot of kitchens and bathrooms have it yet you would be surprised at the length of time that is spent in planning this important part of a construction or remodeling project.

The installation of a backsplash inside the bathroom can help in the prevention of water leaks behind the counter. Moisture, as you already know, can cause rotting over time.

The role of backsplash in the kitchen is to keep the walls from staining. Most backsplash materials are stain and moisture resistant such as in the case of natural stone or granite.

It is easy to install backsplashes. Even a DIY enthusiast can easily set up one without spending much time. You can choose to do this or you can simply hire a professional. You can also choose from many different materials. All these factors will determine the eventual cost of your backsplash project.

The backsplash can also become a decorative statement. Many experienced designers can attest that the humble backsplash can make or break the look of a kitchen or bathroom. In fact, it can add the needed wow factor in a room.

The first kind is the ceramic tile backsplash which is known for its durability and flexibility. Ceramic tiles need very little maintenance while offering a huge variety of colors and patterns. This means that you can easily blend the tiles with any color scheme that you have chosen. If you want a backsplash that is scratch resistant then this is your material.

The glass tile backsplash is a unique material for any kitchen. This is one of the most sophisticated options for your kitchen interior. Also, it comes in different shapes, patterns and sizes. There are also a lot of vibrant colors for this tile type.

For the modern homeowner, there’s always the stainless steel backsplash. This material does not just come in tile form. If you want to install the backsplash in sheet form, then you can also order one. A major advantage of the stainless steel backsplash is that it is heat resistant and highly durable. This can also be mixed with other sorts of materials such as stone or glass tiles. Among the choices, though, this is not scratch-proof.

The travertine tile backsplash, on the other hand, is a popular option these days. This tile comes form the travertine deposits in different minerals which are found in many natural springs and rivers.

Bathroom Wallpapering

Wallpapers come in hundreds of colors and patterns. Choose the one that goes well with your bathroom’s theme. Of course, since the bathroom is often damp, find a wallpaper that is also waterproof. If you can find one that is able to withstand humidity as well, then you’ve just purchased the perfect piece.

Your first option is the vinyl wallpaper. Flawed and damaged walls can look great once more with this type of wallpaper. It can come pre-glued so all you have to do is to soak the strips in water for just a few seconds. Water moistens the glue.

If you have chosen the one that is not pre-glued, then be sure to spread the adhesive on the wrong side as you install it. Find a brush with long handle and use it to apply the adhesive at the back of the wallpaper.

Stick the strips to the walls, just make sure that you cut the bottom strips if they exceed the walls’ length. Use a sharp razor or knife.

Faux marble wallpapers look great inside a bathroom because they copy the look of real marble. This is especially wonderful for light-colored bathrooms.

Be careful in installing faux marble wallpapers as the glue can stick to your hand rather than the wallpaper. The glue sticks easily so be sure to position the wallpaper at a perfect spot before you press.

Faux marble wallpapers come in peach, beige or white shades.

Grass cloth wallpapers look great in bathrooms that have matching toiletries. These come in various colors and designs and can be bought in beige, off-white or brown blends. To decorate with grass cloth, be sure to begin by cutting it into strips.

Carefully spray adhesive to your bathroom walls then position the strips. This type of wallpaper can effectively brighten your walls.

To remove, just apply an adhesive remover then strip the wallpaper starting on the edges.

So where do you begin? Start at the point where you want to end. This should be that spot that is least obvious. Use vertical trimming on this portion. Repeat trimming only where there is an obstruction such as a doorway or a window.

Make pencil marks on the areas where the seams will be positioned, re-adjust where necessary. You would want to leave the tic marks for later installation then adjust the so-called killpoint as needed.

There are hundreds of methods that you can position wallpapers inside corners. One of the easiest is to pull the strip to the corner using a smoother. Make sure that the wallpaper feels tight from top to bottom. Smoothen the rest all the way to the opposing wall.

Cut a single, 45-degree angle, vertical line and place it adjacent to the walls. This is referred to as the relief cut. This should prevent the wallpaper from bunching or having air pockets

Decorating Home With Canvas Prints

Choose the size and shape carefully

The canvas prints come in a huge variety of sizes. You can select from standard photograph sizes, A0 to A4 sizes and custom sizes. In order to make the right choice, you need to consider the free wall space available and the current room decor. If you have a whole empty wall, you can even order a wall mural. If the room is small and has a lot of furniture in it, a smaller size would be more suitable. Just make sure that the images will be clearly visible from every angle in the room.

The rectangular and square shapes are the most popular. If you want several images in a row or you want to tell a story with pictures, you can consider a panorama shape. Oval and round shapes may be available as custom options, but in these cases you have to ensure that you will get precise image sizing and perfect gallery wrap.

Compare different special effects

The advancement in technology has made it possible for images to be manipulated in various different ways for the creation of canvas prints, which are real works of art. Montage is a popular option as it combines several different pictures in a stylish way. There could be several images of the same size or one large and a few smaller ones. You can really get creative with this technique.

Various artistic effects can be used for turning the images into artworks. The list includes sepia, black and white, oil painting, watercolours and pop art. It is also possible for a photograph to be turned into a hand-drawn picture. These effects can be used on portraits and on pictures from your holidays and travels. They are created by skilled artists using advanced software tools. You can work together with the artist to create something truly unique.

Think about the frame

You have to decide whether you want the prints framed or not. They are gallery wrapped so they will look great even without a frame. Still, the frame can integrate the pieces better into the decor. It can also help to protect them from damage. You can choose from different types of natural woods, laminate and plastic for the frame depending on your home decor and your preferences.