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Spanish Colonial Revival Style Architecture

Spanish revival architecture is hugely popular in California, and increasingly across the nation. The mission revival style and colonial revival styles grew in popularity at the beginning of the 20th century, but people today still chose to emulate the Spanish style when building their homes and public establishments. Why do people continue to use this Spanish style? I argue that the Spanish colonial style represents the very beginnings of the United States on the west coast, and this time in the US history continues to spark peoples imaginations. The aesthetic elements are iconic, and people still commission architects to create the homes of their dreams in this style.

The Spanish Colonial Revival style was created in the United States in the 20th century, and it was sparked after the opening of the Panama Canal. The novel Ramona also had a great influence on the popularity of this architectural style. The early Spanish colonies of North and South America had their particular style of architecture brought from the homeland, and this style was them updated to accommodate the new century in the US. Between 1915 and 1931 this style was all the rage, and movie stars in Hollywood clamored to get their Hollywood hills homes built in this style. Mostly the single-level detached home saw this style. On a personal note, my own grandmother has one of these homes in California, and its pink!

The Spanish Colonial Revival style is very similar to the Spanish Mission Revival style, but with a few key differences. Its also similar to the pueblo styles of the west and southwest, and influenced as well by the arts and crafts movement that was the foundation of these architectural styles. The iconic use of smooth plaster, stucco walls, and chimney finishes, clay tile roofs, terra cotta and concrete ornaments is still a highly noticeable, recognizable style. Other elements include porches and balconies, and Roman arcades and fountains. Youll also see canvas awnings. The most important Spanish Revival architect in California was George Washington Smith who practiced during 1920s and 1930s. Perhaps his most famous house is the Steedman House in Montecito, CA, now a museum called the Casa del Herrero.

But there are other architects who took this Spanish style across the globe. Take for example a lovely Spanish Revival building in St. Louis, by the architect T.P. Barnett, son of George I. Barnett; another famous architect in St. Louis. The T.P. Barnett building is particularly interesting because it also has Art Deco influences, making it one of the most unique buildings in the Grand Center region of St. Louis. Certainly the next time youre in St. Louis, you need to visit this Spanish Revival building on Washington Avenue.

Determining Cheap Apple Kitchen Decor

If you are like most homeowners, your kitchen is very important to you. It is the hearth of the home where people feel most comfortable and at home. However, many people neglect their kitchen in favor of sprucing up their family room or home office. If you need to give your kitchen a small makeover but do not have a lot of money, you can still find cheap kitchen decor that is still popular and modern. You could get Italian kitchen decor or even one of the most popular themes: apple kitchen decor and you can easily find cheap apple kitchen decor.

Flea Markets and Antique Stores

Some of the best places to find cheap apple kitchen decor are at flea markets or antique stores. Flea markets are great especially in this economy because people will be trying to sell things to make money. Instead of finding a bunch of junk, you are more likely to find decent products that people just have no use for anymore or that people want to sell to make money for something else. Because the apple kitchen decor concept is a popular theme, chances are you will be able to find some cheap apple kitchen decor at a flea market.

In addition, if it is yard sale season you will probably be able to find some cheap apple kitchen decor at a yard sale or garage sale. If you are looking specifically for apple kitchen decor you might be out of luck at a yard sale, but if you are looking for something that you can modify to fit your theme, you can find some great deals. For example, you could get a plain wooden shelf at a flea market or yard sale for just a few dollars. With a few stencils and a little bit of paint, you can stencil on some very nice apples or apple themed ideas.

Department Stores

If you do not like used products, you can still find cheap apple kitchen decor. Many department stores have cheap and discounted lines for various products. Chances are you can find some cheap apple kitchen decor at your local Wal Mart or Target. Remember, you do not want to go overboard with your apple theme, so try to look for cheap apple kitchen decor that is more along the moderate end. For example, you can get some apple themed kitchen wash cloths or drying cloths. Or you could get some bronze apples to put on a shelf. Whatever you do, remember to look in your local discount or department store for the cheap apple kitchen decor you are looking for.

Improve Productivity And Motivation. How Can Feng Shui Help

Are you a business owner looking for new ideas to improve employee morale, boost creativity and productivity? Do you wonder if adding features like tennis courts and jacuzzi tubs will help?

When it comes to improving the productivity of employees there is no answer in general.Great leadership plays the most important role!Managers need to find ways to motivate their employees with what they do and say – furniture and decor is just one part of it.

After bringing in the element of ‘fun’ like ping pong tables into an office space management will find out quickly that nobody is using them. Ping Pong tables will turn out to be more of a monument to what the business is trying to portrait.It is a fact that by encouraging pool tournaments it is not going to help any business achieving increases in revenue.

Many companies have asked me if re-designing an office in a way that it is more un-conventional will improve results. Managers now believe that productivity will be increased when adding entertainment zones. Wrong! Clearly by just taking this approach, the philosophy again is introduced that ‘one office idea fits all’.

For instance, just recently we designed a sales department in Dallas, Texas according to the principles of Feng Shui for offices. After we did the complete Feng Shui Consultation based on the Sitting and the Facing of the space we learned which Feng Shui colors and materials to introduce, and even more important what we need to avoid, to create an environment conducive to success.We stayed in close contact with each individual top producer of the company based on this range of energy enhancing aspects.Management personally involved each one of the Top Ten Sales People which created a high level of excitement which is rarely experienced. Learning from these top producers how they felt about their soon to be created work space taught us that the ‘one fits all approach’ is not the way to go. If you want to create a productive environment, it is far more important to involve each individual employee asking for input and ideas – creating a sense of ‘ownership’ for results.When consulting with a Feng Shui Professional you are not just hiring an interior designer to turn an office space into a game park – yet interior design layouts based on Feng Shui definetely works!

The spaces we created were so individual in out-come based on Feng Shui and the individual employee an outcome you will never achieve by just adding ping pong tables in order to appear “hip”.

Convection Microwave Oven A Greatest Asset Of Kitchen

Indoor Water Features- A Great Way To Shine Your Luck

Water has been a prominent source of living since the evolution of earth. But with the recent studies it is found that water has the ability to activate or slow down Ch’i. It is a feng shui factor denoting the benefits for health, wealth and relationships. That is why it becomes utmost necessary to have an indoor water arrangement that can increase the follow of luck in to your house. The one take solution for all the needs are indoor water features encompassing various types of fountains and waterfalls.

The indoor fountains reflect the same natural flow of water with pleasing sounds that encourages the energy of Ch’I in to your place. A ready to use tabletop fountain is the best way to avoid the hassle occurring in establishing a water fountain as well as it is the simplest way to add Ch’i into you life. It really helps in stimulating the desires and thrives to go for better. A fountain in your personal space will help you to be calm, relaxing and be associated with natural beauty. The astonishing effects of these water arrangements can be observed in the form of increased wealth, romance and general well-being. You can enhance your career, luck, health and prosperity by keeping an indoor water feature in to your place.

The flowing water produces a calming sound that has demonstrated features to alleviate stress and create immediate relaxation for your body and soul. A water feature illustrating the fine lay out fetches tranquility to the place. The unique scenic view and enjoyable sounds infuse the spaces with warmth and rest. You can feel as if you are sitting beside a river coast enjoying the real natural flavor. There benefits are countless as they can elevate your senses, help you grow physically, mentally and socially.

Indoor Water Features work as a great humidifiers which ensures a healthy airflow reducing the dust particles, pollutants and static electricity. The water fountains having moving water increases negative ions in the air and thereby decrease the positive ions that result in ailing diseases and gloominess. Keeping the benefits in mind it is advised that every work place or house should have the indoor water features to be installed in.

Water features are growing product in the market with enormously increased elegance and creating visual interest to any garden, any home, any office or other locations. This can fill a real delight in your life for the number of years coming out of least possible maintenance.

will turn any home into a soothing atmosphere. The natural sound of water trickling down a water fountain surface is relaxing and calm the mind and body.For more information please visit :

Your Options In Buying Garden Furniture

One of the most relaxing places in your home is your garden. This is the reason why garden furniture is very popular in these days. By purchasing and setting up a set of garden furniture, you can sit and enjoy the relaxing atmosphere of your garden. Furthermore, a nice set of garden furniture will enhance the beauty of your garden.

When you are planning to purchase garden furniture for yourself, you must put in mind that you should always choose the one that suits your style and that of your garden. Today, there are many types of garden furniture which will enable you to choose the one that suits you best

Different Types of Garden Furniture

Tables and Chairs:

When you are choosing a set of tables and chairs, the first thing that you should think of is the size of the area where you are going to place it. The table and chairs must not be too small or too large for it. Choosing the right size of table and chairs will give your garden a more proportionate look.

When it comes to the colour of the furniture, you must pick the one that is perfect for your taste and of course the one that matches with the colour of blossoming flowers in your garden. There are no specific rules in a selection of colours for your garden furniture since it is a matter of personal choice.

Furniture that is made of cast iron is one of the most common types of furniture used in the garden. When you are trying to buy one, you need to make sure that you will choose the ones that have appealing cushions that harmonise with the style of your garden.

Garden Umbrella:

If you are planning to sit and relax in your garden it will always be handy if you have an umbrella with you especially during summers. This provides shade and protects you from the heat of the sun. Like choosing tables and chairs, you must also choose umbrella styles and designs that also harmonise with the overall appearance of your garden.

Once you have purchased furniture for your garden, you can further enhance its appearance by adding accessories and decorations on it. Even ordinary furniture will look extraordinary if equipped with stylish decorations and accessories.

Some of the accessories that you can use are outdoor lamps, bird houses, bird baths, and ornamental statues. These decorations will naturally blend with the setting of your outdoor garden. If you want to further enhance it, you can have a mini pond, or fountain beside it to give it a more classic look.

Use Indoor Spaces to Inspire an Outdoor Living Area You’ll Love

When choosing patio furniture to fill your outdoor spaces, it’s important to gravitate toward styles and materials that closely match your preferences and personality. Living with your choice is easier when you love what you have. Choose patio furniture that you will want to spend time using, not just when friends drop by for a visit, but every day and for no special reason at all.

When faced with the wide variety of patio furniture options, choosing the most suitable style can be as painless as looking to your indoor spaces for inspiration. Do you love your indoor furniture? Does it capture your sense of style? Do you enjoy coming home to the comforts of your sofa or lounge chair? You can easily reproduce that indoor success in your outdoor living areas by choosing patio furniture that has the same inviting qualities that you love about your indoor furniture. Ask yourself what you enjoy most about your indoor furnishings. Is it the comfort, the elegant design, the natural materials? Once you determine what characteristics you love most about your indoor furnishings, you can begin to reduce the number of patio furniture possibilities and zero in on the most suitable choices for your home.

For example, if you love the graceful and romantic style of your indoor furnishings, you should consider metal patio furniture. Wrought iron and aluminum furnishings are commonly adorned with intricate designs and curvaceously flowing lines that create an air of sophistication. If, alternatively, you love that your indoor furnishings are wonderfully comfortable, then resin wicker patio furniture is probably the best option. Resin wicker furniture not only comes with thick, plush cushions, it is incredibly easy furniture to care for, and it is beautiful enough to use inside. Other patio furniture choices are available, too, including traditional wood and environmentally friendly recycled plastic furniture. Each has its own set of unique qualities that can help you determine whether it is the right choice for you.

Far too often, homeowners choose a style of patio furniture that is the complete opposite of what they would choose for their indoor spaces because they feel that outdoor spaces should look like outdoor spaces, quite different from what they’ve accomplished inside. Unfortunately, patio furniture that is not in harmony with your personality and sense of style quickly loses its appeal. Homeowners who have this experience usually find themselves searching for new patio furniture before long.

Whatever your personal style, you can design an outdoor living area that is just as inviting and satisfying as your indoor spaces. Paying attention to what works for you indoors will provide you with the information you need to choose the right patio furniture and bring the same qualities outside to your deck or patio.

Trey Collier is owner of – Where North America shops for Outdoor Living essentials, including high quality Patio Furniture for home and business.

Real Wood Flooring Not As Expensive As You Think

Real Wood Flooring-Expensive Or Not?

The beauty and warmth that real wood flooring offers is simply unbeatable. However, if cost is making you think twice about investing in this flooring option, then there are a few things you should know. Real wood floors are often considered to be the best flooring options as they have been known to withstand the ravages of everyday life whilst still adding a touch of elegance and style to your home. This type of flooring fits in easily with any home decor and style be it period style, modern, classic or traditional. Real wood flooring stands the test of time and manages to sustain its fantastic look for years after being set up. They are not only durable, but also easy to clean and maintain. Their hypo-allergenic quality means that they are extremely health friendly and since wooden flooring is completely natural, they are environmentally friendly as well. Real wood floors have proven to increase property value and houses with wooden flooring have been found to not only sell for a higher amount, but

also sell at a faster rate. doesnt require replacement and retains its value, which means they offer better value for money. So as you can see, installing these floors should be considered as a smart investment rather than an expense.

Looking For Great Deals On Real Wood Flooring?

If you are looking for a real bargain buy, then look no further than Source Wood. They are leading suppliers of high quality real wood flooring and offer a number of cost saving opportunities on the special offers section of their website. They run an extremely quality conscious business so you will find that all their products, including those on special offer, are of superior quality. All the latest wood floor clearance items can be found at their wood flooring sales centre at . These products carry no defect and often result from cancelled orders or end of contract of special orders that need to be sold to clear the way for new stock. You can also check their wood flooring buyers guide at to make sure that you are getting fine quality floors.

If you come across any product you like, you can request samples simply by selecting the request sample button to add it to your samples basket before heading to check out. Their free sample service is restricted to two per sales enquiry, however if you require more than two samples, they are happy to make arrangements for you to receive them. Almost all their real wood flooring is available for immediate dispatch except for custom made items. All their products are despatched to arrive within three days but can be delivered sooner if necessary. To discuss your requirements contact Source Wood at: sales: 08456 021781, telephone: 01379 652613, out of hours sales: 07557 688667 or you can email them at

How To Get Cheap Brand Name Hardwood Flooring

Discount hardwood flooring is available from all the major manufacturers of hardwood flooring materials. One form of cheap hardwood for flooring is engineered hardwood, but some of the discount brands are solid hardwood. This flooring is perfectly suitable for areas where you can nail, staple or glue the boards in place and is even suitable for placing over a concrete subfloor. Even with discount hardwood, you can really spice up areas of your home, such as the rec room or the workshop by buying the hardwood flooring at a cheap price. By buying discount hardwood flooring, you can have the floor or your dreams rather than buying laminate flooring.

If you buy sliced wood veneer when you buy cheap hardwood flooring, you still get the same ranges of choices in design, such as oak, maple, birch or other forms of wood. The discount hardwood flooring also has a hardwood backing, which adds to the durability of the flooring. At the same time, you can get cheap laminate flooring that looks almost like you have hardwood floors installed and is just as long lasting. The hardwood backing used for laminate flooring and cheap hardwood floors is selected mainly because of its expansion and contraction properties. This means that the lumber used was cut in both humid and dry weather conditions.

When manufacturers of discount hardwood flooring make the edge backing, they adhere to strict standards. For example, the factories apply the backing to cheap laminate flooring using an aluminum spine. The spine is stamped onto each piece of laminate flooring to make sure that each piece is stamped a precise 1.5 mm apart. This precision spacing for cheap hardwood flooring allows for flexibility in bending and twisting the planks.

You can select unfinished and prefinished hardwood when you shop for cheap hardwood flooring. Many people assume that discount hardwood flooring is unfinished and that they will have a lot of work doing the finishing themselves. However, this choice is a matter of personal taste and you do have the option of choosing either one when you want to buy at a discount. You will also have the same range of choices in the type of hardwood you want for your flooring as well as a choice of stains and finishes. With cheap laminate flooring, you do not have the choice of having the wood prefinished or unfinished, but you do have a wide range of choices in color.

The increasing cost of hardwood flooring means that many homeowners look for discount hardwood flooring. They may opt for cheap laminate flooring that uses a manufacturing process of sandwiching composite fibreboard material in between two sheets of melamine. This offers the same effect as hardwood flooring, but at a discount price. Some of the discount hardwood flooring uses an embossing feature that gives it a texture very similar to a real wood grain and this suits any dcor.

Learn about and at the site.

WAF’13 Landscape Award Winner – Australian Garden

By Team IAnd Photography: Courtesy the architects

17 years into the making, the Australian garden, winner of the -Landscape of the Year Award’ at the prestigious World Architecture Festival (WAF) Awards 2013, designed by Taylor Cullity Lethlean (TCL) with Paul Thompson is a garden of discovery, of multiple experiences and of cumulative knowledge…

The completion of the Australian garden situated within the Royal Botanic Gardens, Cranbourne on the south-eastern outskirts of Melbourne, Australia, comes at a time when botanic gardens world-wide are questioning existing research and recreational paradigms and re-focussing on new messages of landscape conservation and a renewed interest in meaningful visitor engagement.

Attempting to recreate the seductive qualities of the Australian landscape that have inspired many a designer, writer and artist, the landscape design creates a sequence of powerful sculptural and artistic experiences that recognise its diversity, breadth of scale and wonderful contrasts. Via these creative landscape compositions, the project seeks to stimulate and educate visitors into the potential use and diversity of Australian flora.

On the east side of the garden, exhibition gardens display landscapes, research plots and forestry arrays that illustrate a more formal approach, whilst on the west, visitors are subsumed by gardens that are inspired by natural cycles, immersive landscapes and irregular floristic forms. Water plays a mediating role between the two, taking visitors from rock pool escarpments, meandering river bends to Melaleuca spits and coastal edges.

Visitors engage with the botanical collections via an intrinsically interpretive experience. Didactic signage is shunned in favour of a landscape design approach that captures a heightened experience not relying on mimicry or simulacra. Designed experiences such as walking across the tangle of a Eucalypt forest floor, or the passage through wind pruned coastal heath, comprises a narrative that informs the composition, while the experience reinforces the message. It aims to strike a balance between abstraction, metaphor and poetry.

Visitors are invited into the landscape via a pathway system that constantly morphs according to the landscape narrative and garden experience. Crusty paths in the Gondwana Garden shift to become an over water circular grated plate which connects to a field of stones where the actual path is no longer apparent. It allows many layers of emotional and intellectual discovery, so not every visitor will take home the same message, as each will have their own experience.

Developed in a former sand quarry, it allows visitors to follow a metaphorical journey of water through the Australian landscape, from the desert to the coastal fringe, bringing together horticulture, architecture, ecology, and art to create the largest botanic garden devoted to Australian flora. It showcases some 170,000 plants across 1700 species all adapted to its challenging site condition.

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