Best Value Home Design Software – Better Homes and Gardens Picture Painter Home & Landscape

There is more than just a few home design software available in the market today. Although a majority of these programs are able to deliver excellent functionality, there are some that just don’t deliver value for money. While so home design applications retail for less than $50, there are those that have quite a hefty price tag, sometimes even in the 500-dollar region. It then becomes a question of needs rather than wants. In order for a user to ensure that he is purchasing a piece of software that will be worth his money, he will first need to identify what it is he wants from the said program.

Painting the Picture

Now down to only $49 (formerly at $69), Better Homes and Gardens Picture Painter Home & Landscape is definitely one of the best value home design software out there. This program takes a unique approach in home design in that it makes use of an actual picture as the basis of each project – thus the name, Picture Painter. What this one of a kind software does is it takes an actual image of the existing house (which is either scanned or uploaded by the user to the computer) and integrates it into the program to allow the users to tinker with its design. Instead of starting from scratch, Picture Painter allows users to literally repaint their homes to see what it would look like in different colors. And of course, there are a lot more features on board that will allow users to play with their homes’ designs in their quest to find the perfect look and feel for their future dream house.

Never Wonder Again

One of the reasons why a lot of folks have their qualms about redesigning their homes is because of the fear that it might not look good once the remodeling phase is completed. With the help of Picture Painter, users will no longer have to wonder and speculate ever again as this program will show them exactly how their new house will look like once the changes have taken place. Aside from changing the home’s color, users can also change the textures of their exteriors. Moreover, landscaping changes can also be visually represented on Picture Painter to ensure that users get exactly what they want. This way, a lot of time, money, and effort is saved.

Great for Interiors Too

While Picture Painter focuses on how one’s home’s exterior will look like, it also offers a wide array of features for any changes one might wish to make inside the house. For starters, users can choose from over 6,000 branded furniture and fixtures and literally drag them into whichever room they’d like. Among these renowned brands are Huntwood, Kraftmaid, Armstrong, Mohawk, LG Electronice, Whirlpool, DuPont Corian, Sherwin-Williams, and a whole lot more.

What’s even better is that the whole process is quite simple and very user-friendly – it’s just like editing a picture. In fact, the manufacturer even promises that no design experience whatsoever is needed to excel in this wonderfully-designed program.

Especially when the affordable price is included in the equation, Picture Painter definitely proves to be one of the best value home design programs in the market today.

Accent Your Home and Garden the Right Way

We all want to make our house our home, so after the walls are done, and the furniture bought and placed, it’s time to decorate. The most important way in making your home your castle and have that welcoming feeling is the decor and accents. This also means your garden and yard, because we spend a lot of our time outdoors when the weather is nice. We like to entertain indoors and outdoors so just the right decor and accents bring out the complete feeling of home. A warm, welcoming, place where we feel safe, and enjoy being in and having our family and friends around us.

There are all kinds of home decor and accents to consider. Candles, Candle Holders,Vases, Mirrors, Pictures, Clocks, Figurines, Pillows, Statues, Ornaments, Indoors and Outdoors Fountains, Birdfeeders, Chimes, Birdhouses,Planters, Birdbaths, just to name a few. Use your own personality and themes. You can stick to one theme or you can pick several themes. This is entirely up to you. And the kids always have fun thinking of their own theme for their rooms.

Decorating can be so much fun, and isn’t hard to do. Some of the things you might consider and might be helpful are if you have a room in your house that always seems a little dark, a great way to brighten it up is to add a mirror. Place the mirror on the darkest wall opposite a window, and then try to find a low hung light. This will allow the light to reflect off the mirror and reflect around the room. Also, remember a picture should be the feature of the wall, but never over power the room. It’s a good idea to use a nice dark colored frame to highlight the image. Also, when considering vases, remember, nothing adds more accents to a room than beautifully colored vases. Try to find a vase that suits the character of the room. It should be in a contrasting color to the rest of the room.

Another important accent to consider are the pillows. Use pillows to brighten up your couch, sofa or chair. Try to find a contrasting color to the sofa and chair, but make sure you accent them with other accessories within the room. And remember a few plants or flowers here and there can add another accent and fragrance to a room, but try not to go overboard.

A few featured plants in beautiful vases is all you need. Now since you have all your home decor and accents it is all about displaying them on the walls, on shelves, tables or the walls. Even to set up a nice decor or accent piece on your floor always will be a great way to display it.

Decorating the garden and yard can be just as much fun as the inside of your home. This is where you spend lots of your time also, so you want to make it a peaceful and inviting as much as possible to watch the wildlife and nature around you. This is where you can just let go and really let your imagination take over. Just remember your wildlife friends when placing fountains, and birdhouses and birdfeeders. Don’t be afraid to put garden accents on your fences, and buildings around your garden and yard. Put statues out, and hang several wind chimes around that cling in the gentle breeze. Running water from a fountain is so soothing and releases the stress and your birds will love it too.

So, now its up to you how you want to make your house your home. Be proud of what you decide, and don’t be afraid to experiment. Decorating with accents and decor is really what makes a home and the love within ourselves. Be proud of what you decide, and don’t be afraid to experiment. Decorating your home with accents and decor is really what makes a home and the love within ourselves.

Mission Style Lighting – Warm and Inviting Lighting Style For Home and Garden

Mission style lighting is a straightforward style of outdoor lighting characterized by its bold yet simple geometric shapes, its use of organic, earthy materials like Oak and Cherry wood; copper, brass, pewter, and iron; stained glass, slag glass, and mica. The Mission style of home design and home decorating was originally associated with the Spanish missionaries living and working in the North American Southwest.

The hallmark features of Mission design are straight lines and simplicity of design. Mission style homes typically have architectural features such as textured stucco walls, twisted columns, and rounded design of its windows and doors. Decorative touches might include patterned tile work around windows and on the walls, stone carvings, and elaborate grillwork. In contrast to Victorian decor, the Mission style is basically simple, not ornate or super detailed. The Mission style is a uniquely American offshoot of an English and American design philosophy known as the Arts and Crafts Movement.

The Arts and Crafts movement began in England in the late nineteenth century when a group of painters and craftsmen vocally criticized the mass produced, machine made furnishings and decorative products of the Industrial Era. Artists and architects rebelled against the dehumanizing effects of industrialization and mass produced products. Artist colonies were founded to explore individual craftsmanship and creativity.

American designers picked up on the style and it became very popular by the early 1900s. The Arts and Crafts Movement emphasized creating harmony between the furnishings of the inside with the surroundings of the outside. “William Morris, Gustav Stickley, and Frank Lloyd Wright are among some of the most well-known designers who produced furniture and architecture in the Arts and Crafts style, while many others produced ceramics, glass, textiles, wallpaper, and silverware in the same vein.”(Barbara Mayer)

Mission style outdoor lighting is widely available on the market today. The many beautiful choices include wall sconces, chain hung chandelier and pendant fixtures, post and column mounted fixtures – all perfect for your deck, porch, or outdoor living room and kitchen. These light fixtures are of strictly geometric design, featuring stained or slag glass, or translucent mica, set into a frame made of wood or metal. Lighting fixture color schemes are earth tones such as cream, amber, deep greens and browns, burnt yellows and oranges, dusty rose, sapphire blue. These outdoor fixtures will look and feel hand crafted even if they are not. Tiffany style glass panels in geometric, right angle designs are also easy to find. Because Mission lighting is made for inside and outside, you can coordinate your interior and exterior decorating. Great, because that holistic design approach is a main tenet of the Arts and Crafts philosophy!

Creating a Mission style for your deck, patio or outdoor living room means you can also use design ideas from styles such as Art Nouveau, the Prairie Style of architecture, bungalow style houses, Mission oak style of furniture, Tiffany stained glass, Mexican rustic, and most definitely the English landscape designers Gertrude Jekyll and Edwin Lutyens. Mission style is simple and accepts a eclectic mix of elements, as long as all the elements together create squares and rectangles, strong earthy colors, and rustic, handcrafted look.

Seven Teak Chairs and Furniture Pieces For Your Home and Garden

In the world of wooden teak furniture, chairs are key. You want to select something that coordinates well with the rest of the room. You want something with a natural look that will not be out of style in a couple of years. You want something that will deliver on comfort and cost. The problem is not in the fact that you have to look far to find teak furniture choices that fit your tastes and ideals. The problem is there are simply too many options to make for an easy decision.

To help you narrow down the selection process, here are seven great teak chairs for your home or garden.

Sahara Chair

The Sahara Chair, a teak furniture piece with four strong legs and a solid antique brown finish, is a great piece for your indoor or outdoor dining area. No matter where you grill, you can always enjoy your food with support and comfort.

Veracruz Chair

The Veracruz is one of the best teak chairs for the pool or the beach. It is lightweight, easy to maneuver, comfortable on your skin, and with its unfinished look, striking to the eye. It is without doubt a classy way of getting a tan or drying out after a soak.

Prada Stackable Chair

The Prada Stackable Chair is a piece of teak furniture that gives you all the comfort and mobility of other teak chairs. In addition to this, it will also save you space, as you can easily stack one atop the other for increased storage and capacity.

Port Smuth Bar Chair

Not all teak furniture pieces have to stay outdoors. The Port Smuth Bar Chair can look good anywhere, but is especially appealing when pressed up to the bar. Enjoy drinks and conversation over low music and good company with Port Smuth.

Dakar Chair

The Dakar Chair has a classic unfinished look that will give your kitchen a great look for guests and daily use. It is one of the best teak furniture pieces that you can buy for the money, time, and placement.

Alaska Arm Chair

The Alaska Arm Chair looks perfect sitting on the edge of a pier or fishing dock, where you can go at your own pace and reel in the big one, or check out the latest edition of National Geographic. This piece of teak furniture also carries with it the beautiful unfinished look that draws the envy of your fellow fishermen.

Campania Chair

The Campania Chair is one of the best teak chairs for your dining room. A full set of the sturdy antique brown Campania will have your guests in awe of the style and comfort you have chosen to add elegance and grace to your dinner parties.

Your choice in teak chairs makes all the difference when setting up the look of your home or garden. Make sure you choose wisely by picking something that is both pleasing to you and inviting to your guests.