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Home Improvement

5 Things to Know about a Single-Storey Extension




Expanding your living space is an exciting endeavour that can greatly enhance your home’s functionality and value.

A single-storey extension is a popular choice for homeowners looking to add more room without the complexities of multiple floors. If you’re considering embarking on this journey, here are 5 important things to know about single-storey extensions.

1. Planning and Regulations

Before you dive into the design and construction phase, it’s crucial to familiarize yourself with local planning regulations and building codes. Depending on where you live, there might be specific guidelines that dictate the size, height, and materials used in your extension. In many cases, you’ll need to obtain planning permission before proceeding with your project. Consulting with a professional architect or builder can help you navigate through these regulations and ensure your extension is compliant with all the necessary requirements.

2. Design Cohesion

A successful single-storey extension should seamlessly blend with the existing architecture of your home. Pay close attention to design details such as roofing materials, siding, and window styles. Achieving a harmonious look between the old and new parts of your house enhances curb appeal and maintains a consistent aesthetic. A skilled architect can help you create a design that complements your home’s character while also meeting your functional needs.

3. Functionality and Purpose

Clearly define the purpose of your single-storey extension before finalizing the design. Are you aiming to create an open-plan living area, a spacious kitchen, or a cosy home office? Understanding your specific needs will guide the layout, size, and features of your extension. Think about how the new space will flow with the rest of your home and consider factors like natural light, ventilation, and access to outdoor areas. This thoughtful approach ensures that your extension not only looks great but also serves its intended purpose.

4. Budget Considerations

Like any construction project, a single-storey extension comes with financial implications. Establish a realistic budget that covers all aspects, including design fees, materials, labour, permits, and potential unexpected costs. It’s wise to allocate a contingency fund for unforeseen expenses that may arise during the construction process. Getting quotes from different contractors and suppliers will give you a better idea of the overall cost. Remember that quality should be a priority – investing in durable materials and skilled craftsmanship will pay off in the long run.

5. Construction Timelines

Patience is key when it comes to home renovations. Construction timelines for single-storey extensions can vary depending on the complexity of the project, weather conditions, and other external factors. While you might be eager to see the finished result, it’s essential to be prepared for potential delays. Having a clear timeline from your contractor and maintaining open communication will help manage expectations and keep the project on track as much as possible.

A single-storey extension can breathe new life into your home, offering extra space and improved functionality. By understanding the planning process, focusing on design cohesion, defining the purpose of the extension, managing your budget, and being patient with construction timelines, you can embark on this exciting journey with confidence. Whether you’re expanding your kitchen, creating a larger living area, or building a home office, a well-executed single-storey extension has the potential to transform your living space and enhance your overall quality of life. Remember to collaborate with professionals who can guide you through each step, ensuring that your vision becomes a reality while adhering to all necessary regulations and design principles.

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Home Improvement

Changing Up Your Kitchen? Check Out What Colors Are Trending




Often traditional colors are used for kitchens because they make it easier to add those individual touches that make it your own unique kitchen. However, sometimes you can go wrong and the outcome is boring and outdated.

There are some kitchen colors that never become dated whist others become truly out of date. Ultimately, however, color trends and choices are subjective and there are really no colors that you shouldn’t use if they make you happy. Perhaps you can use the Red Stag casino bonus codes to help you in this endeavor. Below, we’ll look at what the experts say.

Many people find choosing colors for their kitchen, and their home generally, daunting. However, it doesn’t have to be such a difficult task. There are lots of books, and websites that deal with color schemes that can be very helpful and inspiring. “The Perfect Kitchen” by Barbara Sallick offers lots of ideas and images from which to choose and inspire you in your design.

Go for subtle greige rather than overall grey

Cool-toned grey was very fashionable in the noughties and many homes were decorated with this color. However, warmer tones are now becoming more popular.  The go to color scheme today is greige, a blend of grey and beige. Greige works well with almost any other color so is very practical, hence its growing popularity. It could even be replacing white.

Replace vibrant red with a warm terracotta

Even though red is a favorite of many designers, we are seeing a move towards a softer version. Terracotta is the new go to color, a warm paprika. Interior Design Manager at Neptune, Simon Temprell says “The warm, earthiness of Paprika is a blend of red and orange tones but with an emphasis on the red. It works beautifully with warm neutrals, natural timbers and darker shades of green.”

The Director of Veere Grenney Associates, Natasha Grieg agrees saying “A color like this feels both cozy and uplifting. It has great depth, so when used in small kitchens, it makes the room feel more generous. For our work as designers, it is a perfect backdrop to almost all colors.”

Ditch contrasting colors and choose two tones of the same color

Using contrasting colors in your kitchen was considered really fashionable in the noughties. Today, and the forecast for 2024, is a shift to tonal color combinations. This means using different shades of one color to introduce interest and depth. If you have difficulty combining colors then this is a solution for you.

The director of Nicola Harding and Co., Nicola Harding says “A two-tone kitchen scheme allows extra definition and interest without overcomplicating. Most paint charts are arranged in families of colors, making it easy to find two shades that work together or contrast.” She goes on to say, “Remember that dark colors take up more space visually. Use darker shade below eyeline, and a lighter shade that closer to the wall color above; it will help break up expanses of cabinetry and feel calmer and less blocky than a high contrast scheme.”

Choose pastels over loud primary colors

Pastel colored kitchens were a favorite in the 1950’s. They are having a comeback and especially the color pink. The use of very subtle pastel pink variations is trending for 2024 and the latest Barbie phenomenon is proof of that.

Pastel tones were a favorite in the 18th century Rococo period. Pastel tones are characteristically romantic and feminine and invoke the image of flowers and beautiful gardens. Nostalgia is occupying the imagination of many kitchen designers today and therefore pink is taking a front seat.

Jennifer Welch of Jennifer Welch Interior Design when referring to pastel pink that it has a calming rather than energizing effect. “This subtle tone works perfectly in a kitchen that is rather dark, or which suffers from a lack of natural light. Not only does it inject a space with brightness and joy, but it will also bring out and highlight any accent colors in the room.”

Ditch stark white and opt for gentler off-whites, beige and sand

As versatile as white is, designers are moving away from this color and choosing softer versions of the color like ivory, linen, stone and sand. True, white kitchens are still very popular even though sometimes thought of as too stark and clinical. But according to Design Director at DesignSpace London, Richard Atkins, “There are many ways to “warm up” the design, one of which is to consider introducing warmer tones.”

Becca Galbraith, Interior designer for Becca Interiors says “The search for the ideal neutral is not as easy as it would initially appear. Pure white can often be too cold and sterile, while trying to warm it up means possibly straying into the magnolia territory. Instead opt for a softer, warmer white and cream that grounds and lifts at the same time.”

Off white and cream kitchens are definitely trending. They represent a more toned- down luxury. Simple and elegant these creamier color schemes are a basic ingredient in the world of interiors and especially good for modest homes.

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Home Improvement

Fluorescent Light Filters: Which One Will Help You Shine Brighter?




Fluorescent light filters are essential for anyone who wants to upgrade their lighting experience, whether you are working from home or in a corporate setting. These filters offer numerous benefits, enhancing mood and productivity while reducing eye strain and other health concerns.

But with so many fluorescent light filters available in the market today, it is essential to understand which one will best suit your needs. In this blog post, we’ll explore some of the most popular types of fluorescent light filters and help you decide which one is right for you.

What Are Fluorescent Light Filters?

Before we dive into the different types of fluorescent light filters available, let’s take a moment to understand what they are and how they work. Fluorescent lamps emit harsh blue-white light that can cause eye strain, headaches, fatigue, and hormonal imbalance by disrupting circadian rhythms or sleep disorders.

Fluorescent light filters work by altering the color temperature of the white harsh blue-white bulb lights into something more relaxed. Doing so effectively transforms any physical space exposed with these filters into more inviting and productive.

Different Types of Fluorescent Light Filters

1. Full Spectrum Fluorescent Light Filters:

Full-spectrum fluorescent lights allow you to imitate daylight indoors accurately. These bulbs come closest in resemblance to natural sunlight, making them an excellent choice. It reduces visual problems threatened by other artificial bulbs and lighting environmental issues faced mostly while working inside such close quarters all day!

2. Tinted Fluorescent Light Filters:

If you’re looking for a simple way to alter the hue or color change in your room’s ambiance, try using tinted fluorescent light covers! This collection would range between any shade coloristic choices, i.e., yellow warms up tones giving an indoor sunny feel. Pink may substitute slightly warmer pink tone effects similar to early sunsets or more ambient indoor lighting appeal. Green and blue often improve concentration levels because they mimic typical “sunrise to sunset” mood changes.

3. Diffuser Fluorescent Light Covers:

Diffusers are made from a frosted plastic material that evenly distributes light across an area, effectively stopping unwanted glare that may cause eye strain, headaches, and other severe visual problems! Not only do diffusers have health benefits for your eyesight, but it also provides additional benefits, such as lowering your energy bills while preserving the lifespan of your fluorescent bulbs.

Making Your Decision

Now that you know about the different types of fluorescent light filters available, let’s take a moment to decide which one is appropriate for you. You must first examine what kind of environment you are working in or which mood stage you want to set within living spaces before choosing any product like Tinted Filters and Full Spectrum filters.

If you’re looking for something that resembles natural sunlight indoors, go with full-spectrum fluorescent lights. If concentrating or setting a certain mood- tones in activities make tinted covers a priority! And if given a choice between glare protection and improved working conditions, opt-in diffuser-style covers ensure cost-effective longevity towards luminosity use!

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, fluorescent light filters can drastically enhance the lighting ambiance around you. Whatever filter type suits you best, impact on reducing these hazards related stressors like eye strain & inducing productivity will always be worth exploring brighter horizons!

So, don’t hesitate to invest in a fluorescent light filter suitable for your specific needs. With the right filter, you can create a more inviting and productive environment that brings the right vibes. Whether studying for exams or working towards project deadlines, using the correct color temperature will improve your mood and performance.

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Home Improvement

Home Improvement: Lighting Trends for 2023 and Beyond




Indoor and outdoor lighting is crucial in shaping your home’s aesthetics, functionality, and ambiance. As technologies evolve, working on lighting upgrades is a key aspect of improving your home’s comfort and curb appeal. Modern lighting options improve energy efficiency, convenience, aesthetics, and safety.

Like other home installations, current lighting trends revolve around sustainable practices and smart technologies. Smart lighting options, biophilic lighting, and sustainable options, especially low voltage lighting, are the leading trends. Below are a few lighting trends for 2023 and beyond.

1. Increasing Adoption of Smart Lighting

Smart lighting has revolutionized residential and commercial lighting space. As the name suggests, smart lighting is driven by the advancing Internet of Things and home automation. These systems give homeowners control over lighting setups through voice-activated assistants and smartphone apps. You should consider smart lighting for the following reasons:

  • Seamless connectivity and user-friendly controls: Smart lighting systems are seamless and user-friendly. Homeowners can connect and control their lighting fixtures from smartphone apps or smart devices like Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.
  • Energy efficiency: Smart lighting options are energy efficient. They significantly save on electricity consumption, lowering utility bills. Homeowners can schedule lighting depending on room occupancy or the presence of natural light, minimizing power wastage.
  • Personalized lighting: Homeowners can use smart lights to create personalized lighting that suits different moods and activities. These lights feature color-changing and dimming options, which allow users to switch between vibrant lighting for productivity and relaxing hues for relaxing in the evening.
  • Voice control: Lights with this feature allow homeowners to operate lights using their voice. Integration with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa allows homeowners to turn their lights on and off, change colors, and adjust brightness levels using voice commands.

For this and more reasons, smart lights will dominate for several years. These technologies also continue to evolve, making smart lighting more accessible, efficient, and connected.

2. Sustainable and Eco-Friendly Lighting

With environmental concerns becoming a serious issue, sustainable lighting will be a major trend for 2023. LED technologies have already transformed the lighting sector, offering energy-efficient options for incandescent and fluorescent light bulbs. The emphasis on sustainable and energy-saving lights will certainly increase.

Manufacturers in this industry are searching for lighting methods that minimize production waste and use recycled materials. Below are a few sustainable lighting trends that will rock the lighting industry in 2023:

  • Advanced LED technology: LEDs are a game-changer in sustainable lighting options. Unlike traditional fluorescent and incandescent bulbs, LED bulbs use less energy and last longer. As this technology advances, manufacturers will likely produce bulbs with better energy efficiency, dimming capabilities, and color rendering options.
  • Solar-powered outdoor lighting: Solar has become a prevalent option to grid-power fixtures for homeowners looking for sustainability. Solar lights convert sun rays into energy that is stored in batteries for later use. Solar lights eliminate the need for grid power and reduce carbon footprint.
  • Circular design and recyclability: Lighting trends for 2023 and coming years also focus on circular design practices. This ensures that lighting fixtures are designed for easy disassembly and recycling. Manufacturers increasingly use materials that can easily be separated and recycled to reduce landfill waste. The circular design is a sustainable practice in lighting production.

The key drivers towards adopting eco-friendly lighting options are the need to reduce energy consumption and save the environment. Embracing eco-friendly lighting trends reduces ecological footprint and paves the way for more eco-conscious lighting practices.

3. Biophilic Lighting for Better Well-Being

Biophilic lighting has slowly gained traction for its positive effects on general well-being. The focus on this trend will increase in 2023 as more people seek to bring the outdoors inside using lighting fixtures designed using natural materials. Biophilic lighting improves indoor aesthetics and the emotional well-being of home occupants. Here is what you should know about biophilic lighting trend:

They Bring the Outdoors Inside

Biophilic lights are lighting fixtures that bring outdoor elements indoors using mimicked natural patterns. For instance, LEDs are integrated into living walls to create a perfect fusion of greenery. This simultaneously improves the visual appeal and air quality. Other fixtures inspired by natural elements, like leaves and tree branches, are used to create a connection with the outdoors.

Psychological Benefits

Biophilic elements have several psychological benefits. Lighting design integrated with natural elements reduces stress and anxiety levels. They evoke positive emotions and contribute to a sense of well-being. Improved emotional and psychological health boosts creativity and productivity, especially if these installations are in the home office.

Circadian Light for Mood and Sleep Regulation

Circadian lighting is a biophilic lighting component replicating natural light to adjust sleep-wake cycles. This involves using various lighting elements that adjust brightness and color temperature to promote daytime alertness and induce relaxation at night. Aligning artificial light with the natural circadian rhythm supports healthy sleeping patterns.

4. Portable and Versatile Lighting Solutions

The demand for portable lighting options is on the rise, primarily because of increased emphasis on the adaptability and flexibility of modern interior designs. Homeowners currently want versatile lighting fixtures that they can switch placement to change the ambiance of various rooms to suit different occasions. Portable lighting solutions that have become popular include:

Battery-Powered Lamps

These lamps are at the forefront of portable lighting options. They use rechargeable batteries, so homeowners don’t have to constantly replace and dispose of batteries. Users also don’t have to be limited by the availability of electrical outlets. Their cordless design means they can be moved to wherever needed.

Modular Lighting

Modular lighting is essentially single lighting units that can be combined for different needs. They are very flexible, as users can adjust their arrangement and number of lighting units depending on the space and intended activity. Modular lights are best for work environments, as users can customize the setup for different moods and tasks.

Wireless LED Candles

More people have switched from traditional wax candles to LED candles because of their safety and convenience. They are battery-operated and closely resemble traditional candles, except without fire risks. Wireless candles create warm and cozy atmospheres during bath time, at dining tables, and in the bedroom.

Emergency Lighting

Portable lights also come in handy during emergencies. They provide reliable illumination during natural disasters and power outages. Battery-powered flashlights and lanterns are dependable light sources when electricity from the grid isn’t available.

5. Metallic Finishes and Reflective Surfaces

The use of metallic finishes and reflective surfaces will remain supreme in 2023. Metallic finishes essentially add a touch of luxury and sophistication, while reflective surfaces add visual interest and create the illusion of spaciousness. These creative techniques produce visually appealing effects that improve your home’s aesthetic appeal when used together. Homeowners can consider the following options for their homes:

  • Gleaming gold and brushed brass: This is a popular lighting metallic finish for most homeowners. They produce a warm-toned finish that creates a sense of richness or opulence in any room. These finishes also complement different interior styles, including modern, classic, traditional, or contemporary.
  • Mirrored and glass elements: Using glass elements to complement lighting fixtures adds glamor and dimension to lighting design. Mirrored surfaces are great for small rooms as they create an illusion of spaciousness.
  • Polished nickel and shimmering chrome: These finishes exude modern appeal and add some sophistication to indoor lighting designs. Reflective finishes bounce or reflect light in the room, creating an open and bright ambiance.

Generally, metallic finishes and reflective surfaces will remain a prominent interior design and lighting trend for 2023. The versatility of available designs allows homeowners to create rooms with modern and luxurious appeal.

6. Dynamic and Interactive Lighting

Dynamic and interactive lights will revolutionize how homeowners interact with light. Like another design trend, this option combines recent technologies with creative lighting designs to upgrade traditional lighting setups into dynamic, immersive lights that respond to gestures, voice commands, and human presence in general.

Dynamic lights can adjust brightness levels and color temperatures at different times of the day to simulate natural lighting. Replicating warm morning sunrays and cool evening twilight regulates the circadian rhythm and promotes sleep and general well-being. Based on this, dynamic light has direct effects on human behavior.

On the other hand, interactive lighting has sensors that detect human gestures or presence. This allows lights to turn on, off, dim, or change colors. These lighting systems improve convenience and energy efficiency.

Homeowners can integrate dynamic and interactive lighting solutions with voice assistants like Google Assistant and Alexa. The integration allows homeowners to control lights using simple commands. Homeowners can also pre-program these lighting to suit different moods and activities. For instance, you can adjust your interior or outdoor lights to match the ambiance for a dinner party, movie-watching session, and any other activity at home.


The residential and commercial lighting scene will significantly transform in 2023 and the coming years. These changes are backed by innovative technologies, increasing adoption of sustainable practices, and a focus on aesthetics and individual well-being. While smart lighting and biophilic designs will dominate the lighting scene, vintage revivals to dynamic and interactive lights are also expected.

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