Category Archives: Uncategorized

WIN a House Sign In Our Twitter Competition!

Abode House Signs will soon be relaunched as Love Abode alongside our other amazing sites Abode Wall Art  and Abode Window Films, and to celebrate we’re giving away a house sign of your choice on our new Twitter account!

It’s easy: all you have to do is RT this tweet and follow Love Abode for the chance to win any house sign of your choice!

https://twitter.com/Love__Abode/status/514067111552245760

We also have a new Facebook Page where we will post all the upcoming news of this exciting new project – with even more giveaways to come!

Terms & Conditions:

- Open to everyone over the age of 18 living in the UK

- This competition closes October 20th, when the winner will be announced through Twitter and contacted via direct message.

- The prize is any house house sign sold on the Abode House Signs website, excluding mirror letters.

 

3,2,1 Blast off! How to Create the Perfect Space Themed Bedroom

Charlies room

Dark and mystical outer space holds an attraction for many children. Whether you have an aspiring astronaut at home or a Star Wars buff, a galaxy themed bedroom doesn’t isn’t far far away with these tips.

Dark sky colours such as black, purple, midnight blue and grey are most popular for use in a child’s space themed bedroom. If you are a real dab hand with a paint brush then you could add a splash of colour by painting on some planets and a rocket ship. For those who do not consider themselves very arty, wall stickers are a quick and easy alternative to paint. Once complete, make your mural walls sparkle by using glow in the dark or glitter paint to add stars to your skyscape.

space room

Next, use a white circular paper lantern as a ceiling lampshade to emulate the moon and a rocket shaped lava lamp as a bedside night light. Both options are inexpensive but will really add to the effect. You could also consider hanging a mobile that is bedecked with UFO’s and shooting stars from the ceiling.

When choosing furniture opt for black metal or silver chrome. Keep your carpet neutral to counterbalance the darker walls and finish it off with a circular (planet shaped) rug.

There are numerous space themed quilt cover and curtain sets available, from fabrics covered in a multitude of stars to those with a bit more detail which feature specific constellations and planets. Add alien soft cushions and plush toys to the bed (think the little green men from Toy Story or the plethora of extra-terrestrial life in Ben 10). Star wars accessories are another great option and there are SO many to choose from. Our favourite is this R2D2 LED alarm clock. Add a few strategically placed lightsabers and a globe and you should be about ready for lift off.

rsd2

Finally, no space themed bedroom would be complete without a telescope positioned at the window for a spot of pre-bedtime stargazing.

It’s Spring Cleaning Time! Tips on how to Prepare for your Deep Clean.

Spring Clean

Love them or hate them, home chores just have to get done. Take advantage of the offers on cleaning equipment this spring cleaning season and spend a day buffing up your house to sparkling status! Follow these tips to turn your spring clean into a dream.

Buy New Equipment

If you have a piggy bank filled with coppers (I have two!), get them changed at the bank and use your newfound petty riches to buy new cloths, scouring pads, cleaning agents, air fresheners, oven cleaner and a fresh mop. Fresh cleaning equipment just feels better before a big top to bottom clean.

Block out a whole day

Reserve one of your lazy Sundays to be not so lazy. If you get up at seven, have an energy filled breakfast and coffee and get started by half eight, your spring clean will be over by tea time, just as the takeaways opens for you to gather your reward.

Decide on what to do with the Children

It’s nice to involve children with cleaning jobs. It teaches them responsibility and basic cleaning skills, but it can also take up a lot of time as you keep an eye on the little’uns and try to make the tasks as fun as possible at the same time. Sometimes you have to accept that you’re not Mary Poppins, and keep the children occupied while you get on with things.

Get an Audiobook

The popular Audiobook site Audible.com offers a free audiobook for new members, so sign up, grab what you fancy, and make your least favourite chores so much more enjoyable when you’re stuck in a good story. An average audiobook lasts around 8 hours (unless you’ve chosen War & Peace), which should last you through the whole spring clean.

Or Get a Motivation Playlist

Working to a beat is a proven way to get physical activity get done quicker, and getting all that scrubbing and dusting done to your favourite songs will make the task ten times more enjoyable. If you’re really into the science of working to a beat, try and build your playlist into keeping a regular beat (no slow songs!) by using this BPM counter.

Kitchen and Bathroom First

Make yourself a cold meal for lunch to store in the fridge in the morning and then tackle the kitchen first, as this is the most difficult room. Once you’ve scraped the burnt on grease stains off your oven door, matched all your pots and lids and cleared the dust round the back of the fridge, everything else will seem like a doddle. The bathroom should be your second stop, since you’ll want to get the unpleasant toilet cleaning and soap scum clearing out of the way.

Which Colours should you be using in 2014?

Colour is the most important aspect of any home. They can reveal a lot about a person and their tastes, from cool and clear whites to daring, passionate reds. A base colour sets the mood of a room, and will influence all of your home purchases and accessories in the future. Just like fashion, colours have seasons and trends, and 2014 is proving to be an exciting year for colour.

Radiant Orchid

‘Colours of the year’ were announced by the kings of colour and colour research Pantone and leading paint brand Dulux at the start of 2014. Pantone went for a bold lilac called ‘Radiant Orchid’, whereas Dulux announced that a deep teal/grey mix called ‘Sea Urchin 1’ was the colour for 2014.

Both are pretty left-field and daring colours, with Radiant Orchid’s ultra-feminine shade turning heads (Pantone’s executive director Leatrice Eiseman described it as ‘magical’, denoting ‘creativity and innovation’) and Sea Urchin’s cool, dark shade symbolises balance according to Dulux, by combining ‘the natural harmony of green with the tranquility of blue’.

The colours couldn’t be more different, but both are worth experimenting with in your home. Teal and turquoise shades are set to be particularly popular in 2014, as they have the potential to be both fresh and calming, the teal palette covers a huge spectrum and moods, and the combination of blue and green can give a room an oceanic, dream-like feel.

Sea Urchin

Pantone’s predictions that purple and lilac will take over in 2014 reflects homes becoming more expressive, creative and daring. Many have shied away from purples and plums because of their dark colours, but American paint company Sherwin-Williams has also announced a purple shade as the 2014 colour of the year – a very dark violet called ‘Exclusive Plum’. Purples are traditionally seen as royal, bringing a wave of luxury and majesty into your home.

Alongside teals and violets, grey is shedding its reputation as a boring and oppressive colour into being embraced as a smart, cool and relaxing colour for the home which is easy to accessorise and can be complimented with bolder colours (including both turquoise and plum) to create a grown up and sophisticated look.

If you’re bored of neutral white walls, try out some of the colours of 2014 to see how you can transform your home! Experiment with an accent wall and see where colour can take you.

 

 

Choo Choo! How to Decorate a Train Themed Room

alexsroom

Trains are still the most exciting thing ever to young children, maybe because they haven’t had to change platforms at Birmingham New Street with two minutes notice. A certain blue engine is still wildly popular with toddlers, leading to a love of all things locomotive. If you want to decorate your little one’s room with a train theme, follow these tips:

First of all, as much as most adults dread catching the train, a child’s view of trains is more traditional: think steam powered pistons and conductors hats rather than British rail sandwiches.

The main point to keep in mind when making redecorating your child’s room is that the ‘train phase’ has a sell by date. Many little boys (and plenty of girls!) become obsessed with trains and suddenly move onto something different. Like most themed children’s bedrooms, the key is to make a tasteful base from which to build from, and concentrate the theme in your accessories (which can easily be switched over!).

For a train themed room, a good base is a baby or periwinkle blue (inspired by Thomas himself!), mixed with whites and reds (if you’re feeling adventurous, incorporate some stripes into your decorating scheme, since they will give the room a sense of movement and ‘speeding ahead’!) After you’ve made the base, add some wall stickers to start the theme.

Train accessories are also a good way of introducing the theme into the room. Old rail signs/vintage items like lamps and conductors hats will give the room a classic/traditional feel.

Less expensive but still beloved items includes train themed bedding, railroad rugs, posters and, of course, the essential train set! Some of the best train themed rooms out there have a track running around the perimeter of the room on a raised track, try it out if you fancy yourself as a super parent!

If you are unable to find a train themed version of a bedroom accessory, plump for stripy or even gingham patterns to invoke that old wild western vision of steam trains, much more romantic than the 6:50 to Euston!

The best way to finish the perfect train themed room? With our bedroom sign of course!

 

 

Tips to Help you Decorate Small Spaces

Rainbow_Bookshelf

Even the largest houses in England are smaller than their equivalents in America and Australia, and with prices rising (particularly in London), many of us are investing in smaller spaces. Follow these tips to help make your small living space feel like a mansion.

Mirrors

It’s the oldest trick in the book but there is good reason for that. Large or decorative mirrors in a small space give the illusion of size and plenty of room.

Use Vertical Space

If you have a small living room, a floor to ceiling bookcase will save on space and take up oft-unused vertical room. There are other ways to use your vertical space, such as fitting high curtains or investing in a raised bed with a desk or play space underneath for a child’s or spare bedroom. Another classic trick is to mix low furniture such as low-set sofas and chairs with taller items such as bookshelves and storage. This means the middle ground is much larger than it usually would be.

Glossy paint and stainless steel details, glass doors

Much like the mirror trick, making your surfaces reflective and glossy is a great way to add a sense of space in a room. This works really well in a kitchen. Stainless steel kitchen equipment and cupboards painted in rich glossy colours will add

Create ‘zones’ in open plan apartments/studio spaces

If you live in a studio space or an open plan living space, apply a different decorating scheme to each ‘zone’ in your space. Not only will this give you a much more relaxing and pleasant living experience in your cosy space, but it will look much roomier!

Pale walls mixed with bold accent notes

Lighter colour schemes give a space a sense of airiness and lightness, even if it’s tiny! If you’re not the magnolia or pale yellow type, using an accent wall is a great alternative. Paint the room with the lighter version of your preferred colour and then dedicate one wall with the colour you love.

Big statement furniture can make a room bigger

It may take up a lot of your space, but a large sofa, bed or kitchen island can actually help a room feel larger and grander than it actually is.

Lighting Lighting Lighting

A well lit room is a spacious looking room, and having at least three points of light in a room will add space immediately. A large central light mixed with a high lamp and a lower desk lamp is a perfect combination to make a room look huge.

Go Wild with a Safari Inspired Bedroom!

abode sarah

If your child is a little explorer who loves animals, why not turn your child’s bedroom into a jungle filled with wild creatures? Inspired by our elephant bedroom sign, here is our guide on how to transform a boring room into a safari or jungle extravaganza!

Colours

Got for neutral, light colours for the main walls of the room.  A sandy yellow base with accents of dark green is the perfect start for a safari themed room, or an accent wall painted in a darker colour will really set off the room without making it too lively.

Murals

Many animal/jungle themed bedrooms have animals painted on the walls as a focal point. This is definitely only an option for the artistic, if you’re not sure if your skills are up to it, painting some simple leaves and fern patterns in dark green around the bottom of the wall is an easier approach, or large animal stickers can also be placed around the room, and are easily removed if you ever want to change the theme of the room.

Furniture

Basic pine furniture will work well in a yellow bedroom or against darker colours, or if you want to immerse the bedroom deeper in the theme, go for dark or light green furnishings. This table by IKEA would make a great space for study time or craft activities.  We also love this jungle themed storage solution from Bambino Direct. For something really special, this elephant chair not only fits the theme perfectly but is perfect for imaginative children!

Accessories

Bedding is a great focal point for a jungle themed bedroom, animal print bedding is a perfect match – leopard, zebra and even giraffe print children’s bedding is available in various designs.

If you don’t want to change the carpet or flooring of the bedroom, a large rug is a good way of accessorising the room without making a dramatic change. A dark green rug will compliment light coloured walls perfectly, or specific jungle animal rugs are available, such as this really cute monkey rug.

 Finishing touches

What is a jungle themed room without a few cuddly toys? Time to build up a menagerie of cuddly creatures to live on the bed!

For a finishing touch, get our elephant bedroom sign so everyone visiting knows there’s a wild child inside!

Mirror Letter Inspiration

mirror letters

One of our favourite products in our range is our mirror letters, an easy and artistic way to create an eye catching focal point for any room and personalise however you want to. Mirror letters can add your own sweet, romantic, funny or stylish personal statement on any room.

Here are some of our favourite ways to use mirror letters around the house:

Above the Bed

Do you have a favourite side of the bed? Reserving your side by using mirror letters to spell out your names (or even ‘Mum’ and ‘Dad’!) above the bed is a cute way of putting a stamp on your territory!

Welcome Guests

Using your mirror letters to spell out ‘Welcome’ or ‘Hello’ in your hallway is a great way to greek visitors and give your home a warm and friendly feel.

Bedroom Doors

A minimal way to use your letters is to use initials on the bedroom doors in your house. This is a great idea for kids who want to have their personal space marked out as their own.

Be Unique

If you have an inside joke or phrase your family all use, or a favourite quote that will stay with you forever, why not spell it out as a intimate, personal touch to your living room?

As a Wedding Gift

Give your friends and family some mirror letters that spell “Mr & Mrs” to decorate their own home and celebrate their special day.

Use as a Christmas Decoration

Some of us love tonnes of tinsel and reds and greens, but for a more minimal, stylish Christmas, some seasonal mirror letters are perfect for a modern and contemporary home. You could spell out ‘Ho Ho Ho’, ‘Merry Xmas’, or even ‘Deck the Halls’!

On the Fridge

Fridge magnets are so cliché, try something a little different by spelling out “YUM” to make your fridge cheeky and quirky!

 

If you’re a parent, it’s likely you’re very aware of the escapades of Lightning McQueen, Mater and their convoy of auto-buddies from Pixar’s Cars. This has restarted a huge trend for lots of little boys (and girls!) loving everything to do with racetracks, zooming engines and waving chequered flags.

If it’s time to give your kids’ bedroom a refresh, why not go for a racing theme?

Inspired by the racing car bedroom door sign available from our site, here are some hints and tips on how to transform your child’s bedroom into an awesome pit stop.

If You’re On a Budget:

Time to grab the paint. For colours, go for racing car red (Lightning McQueen’s colour!) and contrast with sky blue so that the room isn’t too loud. If you’ve got confidence in your brushwork, painting two crossed chequered flags above your child’s bed is a great way to spark and inspire their imagination.

Another great way to transform a child’s room on a budget it to get creative with your accessories. If your budget doesn’t cover a new carpet or floorboards, these popular ‘road rugs’ or playmats are perfect for playing with toy cars.

Buy some plain pine furniture and razz it up with a paint-over! Or even better, paint over the old furniture that’s already in the room. Turn a wardrobe into a petrol pump, or you could turn a chest of drawers into a mechanics themed giant toolbox.

If You’re Splashing Out:

If you’re redecorating on a bigger budget, the crowning glory of your Cars themed room HAS to be a racing car bed! Since children do eventually grow out of wanting to sleep in a car bed (believe it or not), looking through auction sites online will give you plenty of second hand options.

Try some upcycling and turn old car parts into functional furniture. A quick look on the internet will show you lamps made out of traffic cones, shelves made out of tires, and even book ends made out of old gears. It will take a little time, effort and skill but you will create something that is completely unique and timeless.

 

Don’t forget the finishing touch, our racing car bedroom sign!

 

Deck The Halls! Christmas Ideas For Your Front Door

The Festive season will soon upon us, and decorations are already popping up from neighbourhood to neighbourhood. Before you put up the tree and hang the baubles, a nice early touch is to decorate your door in order to give your incoming influx of guests and well wishers a warm Christmas welcome. Here are some tips on how to make your house entrance shine with yuletide sparkle.

Wreath

Traditional – The Wreath

If you like to keep your Christmas classical, then hang a Christmas wreath on your door. There are lots of premade ones available from garden centres and home stores, but it’s easy to make your own with a ring of oasis and a few garden trimmings and pine cones. Making a wreath can be a fun craft activity for your children too – think spray glitter, ribbons and snow in a can.

Victorian – Lanterns

If you have hooks where you usually hang your Summer hanging baskets, replace them with some Victorian style Christmas lanterns where you can put in candles for a atmospheric look straight out of A Christmas Carol. You can also decorate your lanterns with sprigs of holly, bows and baubles for an extra seasonal touch.

Green Fingers – Fresh Flowers

If you have a flair for flower arranging, Christmas flower garlands are a classy edition to your front door. You can use the traditional holly, ivy and mistletoe to make a familiar red and green arrangement that will look great on your porchway. The bright, dramatic red of the Poinsettia has also become increasingly popular over the years, though it may be best to get fake ones as upkeep is difficult.

Poinsettia

 

Crafty – Yarn Wreath

If you’re knitting all your gifts this year, a yarn wreath is a great make for your home. The best thing about them is that upkeep is easy and it can be used for years to come! They are extremely easy to make (Styrofoam rings can be picked up from most garden centres) and endlessly customisable. Felt flowers and festive shapes like stars and angels finish the wreath off as a quirky decoration for your door.

Yarn Wreath

Kitsch – Fake snow and Stickers

It’s more fashionable to go for a pared down look these days, but some of us still want a over the top Christmas! If you want your doorway to look brash (in the best way), go for coloured lights (bonus points for flashing and music!), santa and snowflake stickers to go on your door’s glass panels and, of course, cans and cans of fake snow.

However you decide to decorate your door this year, don’t forget to hang the mistletoe!