Posted on Leave a comment

Garden Parties

garden parties

Garden parties with the summer finally here – this is the time of year to think about having one. There’s nothing like a house full of friends and kids, daft costumes, silly games with lovely smells wafting through the air.

Even though the summer has now long gone, if we are lucky, we can still use and enjoy our outside space.

If you are going to be ready to use your garden to boost your entertainment capacity you need to do a bit of work on it and invest in the right kit.

A bit of planning and spending on the right things will drastically increase the usability of your garden and reduce the time taken for you to get it ready for use.


Think about the area of the garden that has the potential to be used – where will people stand and where will they need to walk to access the house, seating and eating areas?

These areas should not be surfaced with soil and grass – if the ground is damp it will quickly turn into mud and end up all over your lovely house.

In addition your guests will not be encouraged to use the garden in case they make a mess of their shoes and clothes. If you don’t do something about that surface you will not use your garden for most of the year, so get it sorted.

Fast & Temporary Flooring

Pink Pathway
Funky Temporary Pathway

Quick solutions are old sheets, plastic or paper coverings. You can buy rolls of cheap wallpaper or decorator’s paper & plastic on 100m rolls. These solutions are cheap and disposable – so you can leave your lawn intact underneath.

However they are not that hard wearing and need to be well pinned or weighted down along the edges to be safe. You can also search for ‘aisle runners’ which are pathwide strips of material used for wedding aisles – they work just as well for garden paths.

Another temporary solution is rubber matting. You can buy this from specialist online suppliers and business wholesalers – it is heavy so it does not need securing and it provides a non slip surface. You can roll it out for your party and then roll it back up to reveal your lawn.

As rubber matting is more expensive this would be a good option only for those who host a lot of parties – or have tonnes of money!

Semi-Permanent Flooring

A semi-permanent solution is astro-turf. You can cover your whole garden, but a cheaper solution is to focus on walkways and eating areas. You can buy this off the roll and install quickly – just get advice from the seller on the best way to secure their brand. Alternatively, look for a hard wearing grass seed.

Permanent Flooring

If you want a permanent solution then you should consider decking, paving, concrete or compacted gravel. You can install these yourself or you can use a contractor. These are not quick to install – but if you do it yourself and order your goods from a builder’s merchant they can be surprisingly cheap.

Don’t go too cheap though – a bit of extra budget for machinery like gravel compactors or a cement mixer can drastically decrease the time taken and also greatly improve the quality of the finished result.

Around the perimeter, ‘landscape sleepers’ can give a much needed finishing touch as well as afford some protection to the area.

A Game Area

Giant Games
Most Sets Are a Wee Bit Smaller Than This One!

It is fun to have a game area in your garden for parties. The kids get out there, the adults follow (as they need to keep an eye on the kids) and before you know it the adults have taken over and the kids are relegated to watching them have all the fun.

It’s a great ice breaker and a good way to keep everyone together. As we are outside and the light might not be the best, normal games are not the thing – what you need are massive giant games!

These used to be really expensive but now you can pick them up for buttons. You should choose something simple that does not take too long to play, so chess is not a good choice. Our personal favourites are giant dominos, giant plastic darts, giant snakes and ladders and giant connect four.


Every party needs music so you need a music system. These days there are some great portable blue tooth and wifi enabled speakers. You can play directly from your phone or your mates can take control and use their playlists.

Although these systems are versatile they don’t have the power for large outdoor spaces. If you host parties regularly or you have a special occasion to cater for it will make sense to buy a professional standard PA system – but choose a portable one. 

Portable PA systems are compact and easy to store and move around. You can even buy ones that are specifically designed for outdoor use. You can pick up a good quality portable PA system in the range of £100 to £150 which is cheaper than hiring a DJ or sound system.

A more permanent solution is fitting weather proof exterior speakers and some wiring so you can plug your indoor sound system into your exterior speakers.

Furniture & Heat

Don't Forget Glass & Plate Rests
Don’t Forget Glass & Plate Rests

If you want people to congregate in your garden you are going to have to make it comfortable for them. Think about how to keep them warm and where they are going to either sit or rest glasses and plates. Standing around with a glass in one hand and a plate in the other is no fun and a recipe for lots of breakages.

You can bring your inside furniture out – but then if there is a rain shower you need to move everything back inside. It’s much better if you can create an attractive well thought out seating area. People will be drawn to it and as soon as you have a few gathered more always follow.

Sociable Seating
Sociable Seating

Pick the spot in the garden most shaded from cold winds and/or that gets late sun. You can plant cheap hedging or put up sections of trellis or fencing to provide a wind break. You need to create a focal point for people so they are facing one another, you don’t want lines. So a couple of round tables on a diagonal or benches opposite each other would be great. You can spend as little or as much on these items as you want.

Firepit & Grill
Heat and Food!

Next think about heat. Gas powered patio heaters look great and keep the hot parts out of harm’s way. Chimenea’s and fire pits are more atmospheric but not as child and pet safe. The great thing about fire pits is they can second as a grill and or food warmer – how great would it be to sit round a fire pit while you all toast marshmallows or have a fondue? If these items are too pricey or you want a fast solution you can simply load up your BBQ with logs and create your own fire pit.

IMPORTANT: If you are going to use a fire pit or chimenea with lots of people, alcohol, pets or children thrown into the mix then please read these safety tips.


Picture this – all your guests have arrived and they are settled in your warm, bright kitchen. You have prepared your garden brilliantly but no one wants to go out there. What have you forgotten? Well just look out of the window – it’s dark so no one can see your wallpaper pathway or cosy seats. You forgot to light it up.

Lighting is essential for people to safely move around your garden and reduce spills. It is also vital to making the space look warm and inviting. Always spend a few minutes on lighting, it’s well worth the effort.

Simple, But Effective Garden Candles
Simple, But Effective Garden Candles

You can introduce lighting really cheaply – here is your chance to use up all those candles people keep buying you, even the ones that stink (no one will smell them outside). Cut the bottom off a plastic drinking bottle to use as a lantern cover.

You need to do a few things to make sure air can circulate through the bottle otherwise the candle will not remain lit. Remove the cap and then make a small hole or two round the bottom. The air will be drawn in through the bottom holes and escape through the cap.

To water proof it you can screw the cap on and cut a few narrow slits, or punch holes, at the top for air to escape. Just place the bottle over your lit candle and bury the bottle a few inches in the ground to secure it.

If you really want to raise the bar on garden parties then go for an inflatable building to suit the theme of your party!

Another cheap and fast solution is to use torches. Waterproof them with plastic bags and sellotape. You can hide them in plants, suspend them from guttering and tape them so they point at any angle. Experiment with up-lighting as this looks most effective. Down lighting should be used with care as it is not flattering for your guests. Yellower bulbs are warmer than blue/white lights which can look clinical and cold.

Bottle Garden Lights
Bottle Garden Lights

I always use torches in this way before I put permanent garden lights in. You can try lots of different angles and positions until you find the ones that work best. At that point you can invest in solar lights or get an electrician to lay some cabling.

So what are you waiting for – get yourself a party organised and make sure you can use that outside space.

So checkout our shop page for more great items

We also have an Ebay shop

Posted on Leave a comment

Gardening Protection

gardening protection
Gardening Protection

Gardening without injury – 7 Inexpensive Must-Have Accessories.

Gardening is more than just an activity that results in the growth of a variety of plants, flowers, vegetables and fruits. It’s an instant stressbuster, mood lifter and a total body workout. Ample research indicates that gardening provides physical, mental, emotional and physiological benefits to humans. Moreover, gardening enables us to connect with nature and grow crops that are nutritious and organic.

While gardening is a fun activity, it can also be a little dangerous. Getting cuts, bruises, scrapes on the knees and other injuries are common while growing tomatoes or pruning roses. For most of us, such injuries are just a bit of an inconvenience. However for the very young, elderly these injuries can be real health risks. Soil, compost and animal faeces and urine harbour a range of dangerous pathogens like listeria, tetanus, legionnaires disease, Weil’s disease and salmonella. If you receive a cut or scratch whilst gardening the risk of infection is increased as any pathogens in the environment can enter your body. This can happen through the cut by-passing a range of your usual defences.  Therefore, it’s essential to purchase protective gear in order to prevent such injuries from occurring frequently. Luckily, many protective gardening accessories are reasonably priced.

Below are some cheap protective gardening gears that every seasoned gardener must adorn before getting down and dirty:

1. Gardening Gloves

Perhaps the most important accessory any gardener should have are gloves. Gloves not only prevent the formation of dirt under your fingernails. But they also prevent wood splinters, tiny shards of glass and other sharp objects from bruising your hands. There are several inexpensive gloves available online. Some are even lightweight and feel like a second skin.

2. Gardening Knee Pads

Needless to say that gardening requires the gardener to get down on their knees and feel the soil. Unfortunately, doing this for a long time results in weak knees, knee aches and pain in the knee caps. A simple, effective and economical way to protect your knees is by putting knee pads underneath them. There are a diverse range of knee pads available in the market today. These range from soft cushioned ones to those made of harder material.

3. Gardening Aprons

Gardening aprons are unlike the kitchen ones that moms adorn while cooking a delectable family meal. These types of aprons serve two important purposes. First, they keep dirt and dust away from your clothes and second, they have multiple pockets to store your favourite tools. Suspenders, shoulder straps and buckles help keep the apron in place.

4. Cut-resistant Sleeves

Ask any experienced gardener if they’ve ever had cuts or bruises while gardening and the answer will always be yes. Some might even say it comes with the job. Fortunately, cut-resistant sleeves made of a material called Dyneema can change this occupational hazard. Such sleeves are sturdy enough to protect the wearer from cuts and bruises yet are gentle on the skin. No cuts, no red rash and no discomfort.

5. Magnetic Wristband

On the surface, a magnetic wristband may seem like an unnecessary item to purchase. But in actuality, it prevents gardening tools from forming cuts and wounds on your skin by keeping the tools glued to your wrist. Lightweight and easy to strap on, a magnetic wristband is certainly a tool worth having.

6. Kneeler Seat

Knee pads are great for protecting your knees but you know what’s even better? Kneeler seats. Because they serve a dual purpose. The first is protecting your knees and back. The second purpose of kneeler seats is to store handy tools. So you can store handy tools like pruning shears, scissors, gloves and small hand trowels. Then move along with them. Moreover, some of these seats are also portable
Kneeler seats are especially useful for senior citizens. Who have weak knees or arthritis but don’t want it to prevent them from enjoying the benefits of gardening.

7. Pruning Gloves

Regular gloves don’t offer adequate protection against nicks from thorns. So it’s important to have a set of pruning gloves handy while clipping your beautiful red roses. Since they are tougher than regular gloves, they provide better protection.

Final Thoughts

No one likes getting a splinter under the skin, slapping a plaster on a cut or getting a bruise. Use the protective gears and tools above to make gardening a safe and fun activity.

More hints and tips for the garden here

Posted on Leave a comment

Spring Gardening Tips

spring gardening tips

Spring gardening tips; the sun is out, the birds are singing, and the grass seems to be greener in general; which also means it’s time to make that garden look a bit more appealing!

What do you know about organic gardening? Do you have particular techniques you like to use? Or do you prefer to pick things up as you go? Successful gardening is no big secret and the truth of the matter is that with the right information, you don’t have to be a professional horticulturist to fully appreciate a garden; anyone can achieve their ideal garden organically. Even if you can’t go the whole hog there are some easy ways to greatly reduce your use of chemicals and fertilisers. Make good use of our spring gardening tips.

Spring gardening tips, you’ll soon be on your way to attaining that organic garden of your dreams!

  • Pay close attention to the positioning of your plants. You can utilise certain taller plants to shade plants that are sensitive to the sun. Don’t be afraid to move your plants – either in Autumn or early spring while the plant is dormant.
  • Mix a combination of water, vinegar and alcohol to scrub away salt deposits that build up in clay pots. This ensures you can use them again (just make sure they are dry prior to using them though!).
  • A cheaper alternative to insect repellent is washing up liquid; simply just squirt a little into a water spray bottle and spray the plant foliage to keep those insects away.


  • It is worth spending a little extra and investing in a fence to go around your garden. It keeps put unwanted animals and also helps stop weed seeds and pests from entering your garden.Spring Garden
  • If you are garden proud, it may be worth investing in artificial grass for your garden. This will ensure it stays looking pristine not only during the warmer season, but all year round. Artificial grass does not need feeding, weeding, watering or cutting!


  • A great way to get rid of slugs in your garden is to leave out a container or bowl filled with beer. Ensure that the lip of the container is at ground level. Slugs are attracted to beer so will be drawn to it and drown.
  • Another common method of ridding your garden of leaf eating insects is to use chilli pepper. Simply add a tablespoon of red chilli pepper per quart of water in to a spray bottle and spray on to the leaves and foliage.
  • See organic gardening as more of a hobby rather than a chore. Gardening is incredibly therapeutic, once you relax you will learn that you enjoy it a lot more.
  • Consider buying or building a composter. You can recycle all your kitchen and garden waste into a natural and organic fertiliser.
  • If you are a pet owner, ensure you read ingredients and be wary when using repellent and weed killer; these can be harmful for your pet.
  • Remember that soil needs to be pretty dry before digging; digging soil while it’s wet can destroy the structure which defeats the whole purpose. Because it is wet it is also much heavier so the job is much more tiring!


  • If you forgot to use grass seed in the Autumn to fill bare patches and thicken your lawn you can still sow in mid-spring. However, you need to keep the seeds moist so wait until a period of showers is forecast. If this is not possible then make sure you water your new seeds regularly. We recommend buying your seeds from an agricultural grass seed supplier online. The quality will be much better and the price lower. Many of the grass seeds sold in DIY chains are old and their germination rates relatively poor.
  • Once you have the base of your garden covered, add a few visually appealing additions; this can do wonders for the aesthetic appeal of your garden. Think wind chimes, a water feature, a bird house or even a sculpture.
  • Last of all, you want to sit back, relax, and enjoy your efforts, so invest in a garden bench or perhaps even a swing gazebo! After all that hard work, you deserve it!

In conclusion

So there you have it, obviously, there is a lot more to gardening than just the above basic tips, and the more you reap, the more you will sow! Just remember, if you are a beginner or budding gardener, nobody gets it right the first time; it is normal to tinker a little, change things about and experiment – it’s all part of the fun!

Great Article on building a pizza oven in your garden.

Posted on Leave a comment

Bathroom 7 Ways To Keep It Fresh


Bathroom 7 ways to keep it fresh. It’s a constant battle against dirt and grime.

But are there any extra tips that will help you to keep things feeling fresh in-between those regular cleaning sessions?

Of course, and in today’s post you’ll find out the top seven…

Throw out the curtains

Shower curtains are constantly subjected to a lot of moisture and are rarely dried properly. They’re a breeding ground for bacteria and mould.

So it’s much better to swap them for a simple, modern shower screen (such as those here) which can be wiped clean after every use.

Get yourself a window cleaners squidgy too to prevent limescale building up on the screen.  You won’t have to keep replacing them and the large glass panes will make the room seem bigger.

Window curtains in shower rooms can also wind up mouldy, so swapping these for easy-to-clean blinds will keep the room feeling fresher.

Stick to white where possible

Whether you opt for new tiles or simply re-paint your walls.

Using white and other pale tones instantly makes a space look clean and fresh when you walk in. Plus, it will never date.

And you can simply change the theme by swapping the accessories and colour highlights as your taste changes.

Plenty of plants

There are tonnes of benefits to using plants in your bathroom. Many varieties thrive in moist environments, and they give off more oxygen whilst removing toxins from the air. Freshly cut flowers also give off a wonderful fresh scent to impress visitors.

Re-think the soap

Not only can hard soap leave a gunky mess that dries to the countertop, but soap dishes can also harbour bacteria. Opt for a sweet-smelling liquid soap instead which has anti-bacterial properties, and they’ll be no more mess every time you wash your hands. Attach a wall mounted soap dispenser and your cleaning job will be greatly simplified.

Have ample storage in your bathroom

The better the storage solutions you have and the more you try to keep order, the less spillages you’ll have. Plus, if you have dozens of products out, it can make those crowded areas more difficult to clean and you can get dust build-ups fast.

Use tiered storage to make the most of vertical space and reduce the amount of clutter. Have a good clear out too. Why are you holding onto those old fashioned talcs, creams and hair products that no one has and ever will use? Get rid of them and just keep the products you use regularly.

If you don’t use a pot, tube or gel every day tidy it away into a drawer or cupboard. Store similar products together in a container so it is easy to find and access what you need. Even if you don’t have the storage to put them out of site, putting htem in a container will amke your bathroom appear tidier adn make it easier for you to move things when you clean.

bathroom fresh
Store Similar Products in Containers

In the Bathroom Ventilation is vital

Showers and baths produce a lot of steam, which often settles on the walls to form condensation, which in turn can lead to a mould problem. Proper ventilation can prevent this, so if you have a bathroom window, always open it after the use of cleaning products, chemicals or the shower.

If you don’t have a window, remember to install an extractor fan and regularly clean it. Although this may seem like a big job it is essential. A damp bathroom will always be unpleasant, dirty and unhygienic.

Do away with bathroom air fresheners

If you think that by spritzing an air freshener that you’re cleaning an area, you’d be wrong – that smell quickly sinks to the floor and is gone within minutes. Instead, buy essential oils and reed diffusers, which will emit a fresh scent constantly throughout the day.



Posted on Leave a comment

Prevent Damp in your home

Prevent Damp

Prevent damp helps to keep your house dry, warm, and free of mould.

Keep it as watertight as possible.

First of all there are a few areas where water can enter your house.

Likewise its important to understand what these areas are.

Above all checks can be done to ensure all is as it should be.

Prevent Damp make External Checks

First of all check your external walls, check for any of the following:

  • First of all are the windows and window frames in good condition?
  • Another sign of rot in wooden windows is gaps around the frames.
  • These could be letting in cold air and damp.
  • Also mortar in brickwork – is it up to scratch?
  • Because mortar joints should not have pieces missing .
  • So this can cause structural weaknesses and penetrating damp.
  • Furthermore does your property have a damp proof course and is it working effectively?
  • Look for a line of plastic in the mortar joint about 150mm above you external ground level.
  • In older buildings this could be a line of bitumen or even slate.
  • Certainly check if any air bricks blocked?
  • Look for bricks with holes in them placed at about 150mm above the external ground level.
  • They should be free from blockages and obstructions to allow air movement through them.


  • First of all are your gutters blocked or broken?
  • Furthermore leaves and debris can collect in gutters causing them to block.
  • Once blocked water overflows and runs down walls.
  • Likewise this creates moss and algae and possibly internal damp patches.
  • Do you have any missing, broken or out of place tiles?
  • Above all check your roof for tiles that may have been pulled of by heavy winds.
  • Is the chimney and its surround in good condition?
  • Flashing around the chimney should be sealed into the chimney and flat over the tiles.
  • Any lifting or damaged flashing should be replaced immediately to stop roof leaks.

It’s also important to be aware that if you have any climbing plants on your house.

They could be hiding some of the above problems.

Finally roots of trees near your home may be damaging your foundations and damp proof courses.

Prevent Damp do Internal Checks

  • Check windows and walls for condensation.
  • Normally you see water drops on windows or cold surfaces.
  • In severe cases you may even experience black mould in places.
  • Kitchens and bathrooms are areas where condensation is most likely to form.
  • Which is due to cooking washing and drying of clothes.
  • If you spot condensation take positive steps to control this.
  • This can be done by installing ventilation systems to control the relative humidity.
  • And using anti mould products to remove mould could stop it occurring again.
  • Is all your plumbing in good condition?
  • Is there any damage or visible cracks or leaks around sinks or toilets?
  • Damp patches across floors and on walls can be leaking or damaged pipes.
  • Damp patches will look like dark areas on walls, floors and even ceilings.
  • Often once the leak has been rectified the damp patch will disappear.
  • If you have had the leak for a long time this may have caused rot within timber.
  • That will require remedial treatment by a professional.


Finally if you spot any problems take steps to dry out the damp quickly.
Where they is any doubt talk to a

Prevent Damp

Posted on Leave a comment

Protect yourself from 4 common dangers during DIY

Protect yourself If you’re a keen DIY hobbyist.

Then chances are you’ll think nothing of touching up some paint, staining wood, or sanding a rough door jamb. On the surface, these can seem like low-risk tasks.

But even little jobs can be surprisingly dangerous.

Especially if you’re used to doing them and have stopped taking the right precautions before you pick up tools.

Some of the biggest risks come in the form of deceptively easy tasks.

And even the most experienced handyman can be caught out.

I am going to talk about four home DIY hazards that you might overlook.

And what you can do to keep yourself safe.

Just keep reading to learn more.

Protect yourself from dust and respiratory irritants

All sorts of DIY tasks, from removing tiles to stripping carpets can produce clouds of dust.

While this is fine in small concentrations, high volumes of inhalable matter can seriously irritate the lungs and airways.

Cutting and sanding jobs can be particularly hazardous.

Furthermore when working with wood, MDF, and plywood, it is so important to make sure your workspace is ventilated.

You should always carry out any sanding or cutting work outside, or in an airy garage with open doors.

If this isn’t possible, then you’ll need to find other ways of ensuring your workspace is properly ventilated.

Open as many windows and doors as possible and use a portable fan to help vent matter out of the room.

It is also a good idea to wear a respirator designed for cutting and sanding work.

If you’ve got a ventilation system in your home or an air conditioner of any kind.

Above all you will also need to be extra-careful these don’t become clogged with dust.

As these will circulate harmful matter around your living space when you next switch them on.

If using a portable unit, put it in a different room while you work.

And if not, switch it off and cover the vents with thick paper and masking tape.

This will stop any dust from getting inside.

Protect with a Mask
A Vapour & Particulate Respirator

Protect when using white spirits and paint strippers

Paint strippers contain potent chemicals called methylene chloride, which consequently allow them to break down solvents.

While this can be very useful when you need to strip furniture or doors for repainting.

As a result it also means they can be hazardous to the lungs and skin if used without the proper precautions.

When using these products, you should always wear clothing that covers the arms and wrists.

Because in case of splashes or spillages you must protect your hands with a pair of chemically resistant gloves designed for use with your paint stripper.

White spirits and strippers also produce fumes that can cause dizziness, nausea when inhaled.

So, you’ll need to make sure that your work area is properly ventilated during use and give yourself regular breaks to allow the fumes to disperse.

After finishing, you should always make sure that you reseal your white spirits and paint strippers securely to prevent any leaks or fumes escaping and store them in a cool, dark place.

If there’s any risk that children might be able to access them, then it’s sensible to keep them in a securely locked box or cabinet in an out of the way place, like the garage.

Protect when repairing electricals

Repairing electrical appliances or rewiring your home can be extremely dangerous.

As a result you’ll need to be particularly confident that you know what you’re doing.

During repairs, you should always wear insulated safety gloves.

And preferably a pair of rubber-soled boots designed for electrical work.

While not a failsafe form of protection they’ll offer an extra layer of insulation should something go wrong.

Electrical repairs can be complex, and there are lots of things you’ll need to bear in mind.

Sso take a look at Electrical Safety First’s guide for DIYers to learn more.

Once you’ve finished your repairs, it’s vital you make sure that your work is sound.

Improperly repaired electricals will continue to be a danger to you and anyone who comes into contact with them, so if you’re not completely confident that your handiwork is up to scratch, call a professional for a second opinion. Even if you need to fork out for repairs, it’s much better than causing an accident or leaving a potentially dangerous appliance to injure those around you.

Painting and Staining

Most of us think nothing of touching up some cracked paintwork or staining a bit of damaged garden furniture. But, nearly all paints and stains contain solvents, which can cause irritation and even burns, so you should always make sure you’re wearing adequate protection — even for small jobs.

Long sleeves, thick work trousers or jeans, and shoes that will protect the feet from splashes and spillages are essential during this sort of work, so make sure you’re fully suited and booted before you pick up tools.

Many people avoid wearing gloves during painting and staining work because they think it will hinder their accuracy with the brush, but there are lots of gloves on the market that will protect your skin without compromising your dexterity.

A pair of well-fitted latex or nitrile gloves will prevent any skin irritation, and you’ll still be able to apply the paint or stain accurately. It’s also important to ensure you apply these products in a well-ventilated area: if you’re working in a space where opening the windows isn’t possible, then wear a respirator and take regular breaks to allow the fumes to disperse.

Even if you’re an old hand at DIY, you should always be on your guard for potential hazards.

Remember, if don’t think you have the correct tools or PPE to handle a job safely, then it’s always a smart move to call in a professional — after all, it’s better than risking an accident or paying a small fortune to fix sloppy repairs.

Posted on Leave a comment

Garage Storage Ideas 11 Ways To Keep Your Tools Organized

Garage Storage Ideas For Tools

Cabinets aren’t the only type of storage device you can build to deposit all your mechanic tools and household items. Tools just can’t lie around. While with new household equipment pouring in from fix after fix, it’s becoming more and more difficult to find a room to simply stock everything. Therefore make the best use out of your space with these do-it-yourself garage storage ideas and maximize what you can do with the entire area–without having to spend so much as a few bucks!

Garage Storage Ideas To Keep Your Tools Organized

Because back when I was still starting out on woodworking and other DIY projects, my tools had no place to go. For instance they were just lying on the table, or on the ground, and sometimes, in the weirdest places, like the kitchen drawer. It took me quite a while to sort out and find ways to store my tools inside the garage. Also when I say that these storage ideas that I am about to show you really work and they can do wonders for your storage needs. Here are several garage storage ideas that you can use!

1. Overhead Storage

Overhead Storage | 11 Awesome Garage Storage Ideas To Keep Your Tools Organized

Above all suspended shelving might just be for you if you’re planning to make use of every square foot of your garage. Normally used for tools not commonly used, shelves positioned overhead may accommodate those looking for better space.SALE

2. Mounted Wall Rails

Mounted Wall Rails | 11 Awesome Garage Storage Ideas To Keep Your Tools Organized

First of all overhead storage may keep your bigger, less commonly-used tools stocked, but tools that are smaller need a more accessible and organized type of storage space. Hence a cost-effective and easy way of storing your commonly-used small tools, you may opt for mounted wall rails.

3. Hanging Jars

Hanging Jars | Garage Storage for Tools

Maybe a more creative and cost-efficient storage of small materials such as nails, bits, and screws, could use simple household materials to create hanging jars. Certainly they are easy to make, they are easy to utilize as well, allowing easy access to the smallest tools of your DIY arsenal.

4. Tire Racks

Tire Racks | 11 Awesome Garage Storage Ideas To Keep Your Tools Organized

If you have spare tires that litter around your garage, making tire racks will perhaps be the most beneficial way to go for you, saving space that you can use for more cabinets and shelves.

5. Shelves

Shelves | 11 Awesome Garage Storage Ideas To Keep Your Tools Organized for Tools

Shelves, shelves, good ole shelves. Because they never grow out of fashion for their obvious usability and ease-of-use. If you’re not too worried about space on the ground, a shelf is always an option.

6. Coat Hooks

Coat Hooks | 11 Awesome Garage Storage Ideas To Keep Your Tools Organized For Tools

Likewise coat hooks aren’t just for coats. Hence spare bags or dirty rags can be neatly arranged on coat hooks too. Coat hooks can give your garage not just a more usable space, but a nifty aesthetic feel as well.

7. Re-purpose

Re-purpose | 11 Awesome Garage Storage Ideas To Keep Your Tools Organized

Because the best (and most enjoyable) idea among these garage storage ideas would be to repurpose old, unused things at home to build your own garage storage device. Old plaster boards and unused hooks are great materials to use when making shelves, cabinets, or even vertical storage.

8. Jumbo Tape Dispenser

Jumbo Tape Dispenser | 11 Awesome Garage Storage Ideas To Keep Your Tools Organized

Remember those tape dispensers that you had lying around on your desk? Well, you can create your own tape dispenser for your garage! Think of it as an awesome way to keep track of where your tapes are and how much of them are left.

9. Suspending sliding Storage System

Suspending sliding storage system | 11 Awesome Storage Ideas To Keep Your Tools Organized

Think of them as overhead drawers, if you will. A sliding storage system, like this one, can keep a lot of tools organized without taking up too much space. Let’s face it, we’ve all had to deal with cluttered boxes of stored tools, right? This suspending storage system is a must-have for every DIY enthusiast. Just make sure that the containers are durable and sturdy.

10. The Screwdriver Coat Rack

Screwdriver Coat Rack

DIY enthusiasts know what it’s like to lose a couple of screwdrivers, especially when you need them for certain projects. I can no longer count how many screwdrivers have come and gone inside my workshop. Either the magical screwdriver fairy took them away or I have a bad habit of forgetting Where I placed them. This screwdriver coat rack is going to help you keep your screwdrivers together while saving tons of shelf and drawer space.

11. Truss Shelves

Truss Shelves

This is an amazing way to store tools because it not only serves its purpose, but it also adds a dash of minimalism to your garage. The slanting design of truss shelves allows you to store your items without the shelves looking like a complete eyesore. Think of it as a pyramid. You can sort out your most commonly used tools by placing them on the bottom shelf and the least used tools on the top.

To help you out with organizing your tools, I suggest you list down everything beforehand. This will help you decide on which of these garage storage ideas would be best for them. Did we miss out on any garage storage ideas? Tell us in the comment section below.


Posted on Leave a comment

Clean and Deodorize your Microwave


Clean and deodorize your microwave. Because if you are like many people out there, you don’t really think about cleaning your microwave all that often, I mean, the radiation probably keeps it clean and sterile right? First of all the radiation will kill bacteria if left on long enough. Microwaves do not cook via radiation directly. Because the radiation they produce only affects water molecules in the food you are defrosting or heating. The heat is what actually kills bacteriFinally microwaves are an effective way to kill bacteria but only if the items in the microwave heat evenly and you leave them in long enough to be very hot.

What if you only gently reheat a drink? Because the microwaves will be drawn to the high water content in the drink not the bacteria hanging from the crusty dirt on the inside of your machine. It only takes a tiny crumb coated with bacteria to fall into your mug. Because you only gently reheating the drink rather than boiling it the temperature will not be hot enough to the kill the bacteria.

So you do need to keep your microwave clean and these are the best ways to do this.

So how can you get your microwave really sparkling clean?

For instance the first thing you need to do is take out that rotating glass plate that collects the majority of the spills. Because this is usually the piece people clean regularly as it usually fits into the dishwasher. Wash with warm soapy water like you would with any other plate.

Clean your microwave with baking soda

Grab a microwavable bowl of warm water and mix it with 2 tablespoons of baking soda. Pop this in the microwave and turn it on for three to six minutes. When you hear the microwave ding, leave it in there for another minute or so and let the steam fill the microwave.

Next, grab a clean sponge and start scrubbing. The steam will have loosened the spills and dried up food. Furthermore, by using baking soda, you will have absorbed lots of the odour that was lingering inside.

Clean your oven with vinegar

Many people swear by vinegar as the only method, as they feel it is better for removing grease. Pour about 250ml of vinegar and 250ml of water into a microwavable bowl. You need to boil this longer than the baking soda method, between 5 and 10 minutes should do it. This will allow the steam to soften the spills, splashes and food. Grab your sponge and the grime should come off with ease.

Benefits of using white vinegar:

  • No hidden chemicals
  • It’s cheap
  • Removes odours rather than covers them up
  • The acetic acids in the vinegar sanitise and deodorise your microwave.

Cleaning the all important microwave door

No matter which of these methods you use, you will need to clean the door in and out. Your basic glass cleaner should do the job, (it works on the inside too) as either of the methods will have loosened any dried food. Add a little vinegar if you wish and some elbow grease and your microwave will look spick and span.

Good cleaning habits

In the future, dry and wipe away spills quickly after they happen, otherwise they will continue to cook and will become more and more stubborn to remove.

Disposing of your microwave:

As a microwave is a hazardous substance it will need to be recycled rather than just thrown away.

  • Contact a local recycling centre to see what they accept.
  • Contact your local council who may come and collect it for you
  • Some electrical shops will allow you to drop it off for recycling

Killing Bacteria

The good news is that you can use your microwave to disinfect kitchen clothes and washing brushes. Because of the items they come into contact with combined with being wet, they are havens for bacteria. If you wet these items and microwave them for a couple of minutes you will be killing virtually all the bacteria on them!

Spring gardening tips

Check out these gardening products on our ebay shop.

Posted on Leave a comment

Handles updating the easy way

Handles are everywhere in our homes. They are visible, obviously! so they have an impact on the look and feel of our homes. We don’t get to choose the handles on most of our furniture so we can end up with ones that we don’t particularly like or that don’t complement the design scheme of the rest of the room.

In addition, handles are tactile, we touch them several times a day and they leave an impression on us; do they feel smooth, cold, sturdy or warm? Does this impression leave us with a positive experience? Does a grubby handle remind you that you really need to do a long overdue spring clean for example? Do old-fashioned or tarnished handles take the shine off an otherwise lovely room?

These days you don’t have to be stuck with handles that you don’t love. Handles are now very affordable and easy to buy online so what are you waiting for? Replace any old or ugly handles with something better and instantly refresh your home.

Clean and Touchup

First of all, you should make sure the surface of the cupboard doors look neat and tidy, you should give them a good clean with something like a cream cleaner or a degreaser. This will fetch off most marks and stains, using an old toothbrush will make this task easier and more effective.

Next, you should touch up any chips or large scratches. Use paint, nail varnish, markers or anything you have to hand. Nail varnish is great for high gloss or plastic surfaces. Strong coffee works well to hide scratches on wood, wood veneer or wood effect surfaces as it can stain the underlying material in a similar colour to the top surface.

Cupboard Handles

Everyone becomes bored with their decor now and again. You can freshen up a room and make it interesting again without having to change the large and expensive elements like furniture and flooring. It is also not very environmentally friendly to throw out chests of draws or kitchen cupboard doors when they are in perfectly good condition. Why not freshen them up instead?

First of all, follow our cleaning and touch up instructions (above). The simplest way to freshen the furniture is to replace the handles. Carefully remove the existing cupboard or drawer handles. Keep all the internal parts and fixings, screws and washers and tape them together – take them to a charity shop, don’t throw them away! Replace them with ones that are different colour or style to the originals.

You can buy replacements very cheaply. You can find a website with a good range of cupboard handles easily online. We like the range at the Handle King, there are a mix of materials (brass, aluminium, stainless steel), colours (matte black, copper, polished/satin chrome) and styles (traditional and contemporary) so you can select a style that you love but is different to what you have grown tired of. One of our likes is the Copper Cup and Brass Victorian Bow handles but there is also a great range of modern handles for under a pound each. We tried a couple of these handles out.

Polished Copper Handles

Polished copper handles
Polished copper handles

We were instantly attracted to the ‘polished copper finish’ handle. We hadn’t seen any before with this finish. Brass is, well brassy, and very old-fashioned, however, the copper finish is much softer and warmer with pink tones. As a result, it is much more modern and softer on the eye. The handles would fit in with lots of contemporary as well as shabby chic design schemes. We loved these handles. They looked great on the bathroom cupboard we tried them on. We replaced the old knobs so we only had to drill one hole for each new handle as we re-used the existing hole. They are very sturdy and solid and easy to grip. They bring the unit bang up to date and make it look really stylish.

Matte Black metal handles

These handles are well made, feel strong and appear durable. Although the design is simple they are good looking and fitted securely on our kitchen cupboards. The matte black colour is unusually tasteful and sophisticated. They would look great in a contemporary loft space or office. We also think they would be brilliant in a farm style kitchen or Scandinavian inspired room too.

Matte black cupboard handles
Matte black cupboard handles

Fitting Tips

When you choose a new handle think about the existing holes in your furniture. Will your new handles use the same holes? If not how will you hide or cover the old ones? For the best (and easiest) finish choose a handle that can reuse existing holes or that will cover up redundant holes.

Most handles simply screw in place by hand or need a simple tool like a screwdriver or allen key. Although Handle King supplied screws needed to fix the handles, not all suppliers do. If this is the case make sure you go to a good hardware shop and buy matching screws. Then all you need to do is step back and enjoy the updated look of your cupboards or chest of drawers.

Protect yourself in your home and workshop

Posted on Leave a comment

Money-saving 5 Inspiring Tips for Home Renovation Projects

Money saving tips for home renovation projects.

So is your kitchen looking tired and dated? Are you dreaming of a plush new bedroom? Or do you wish you could install a sparkling new bathroom? Because if you’re itching to update your home don’t let the cost put you off. Finally with some smart shopping, a bit of elbow grease. It is possible to renovate almost any room in your home without breaking the bank.

In this article, we’ve shared five money-saving tips that will give your home a new lease of life. Without the hefty price tag that often accompanies a major renovation project. Just read on to learn how you can transform your home on a budget.

Money devise a budget, and stick to it

Before you begin, you’ll need to work out your budget. Because this will dictate everything from how much you can spend on new fittings and materials. To how much work you’ll need to do yourself. So it’s vital to get an accurate estimate of what you can afford to spend.

Therefore to get started, write a plan of every change you want to make (no matter how minor). Set about finding out how much each step of the process is likely to cost. Remember, many contractors and tradespeople will offer a no-obligation estimate of their costs. So take advantage of this and get an idea of what you’ll need to spend on labour. Finally you can learn more about finding a trustworthy tradesperson for a fair price using this guide from Citizens Advice.

For instance wherever possible, you’ll also want to stick to a cash budget. Because paying for renovations on finance or using credit cards could quickly mean that interest charges spiral. Remember, even with the best planning, there’s always a chance that your project will run over budget. So it’s always sensible to build in some wiggle room in case of unexpected expenses. As a result even if you don’t need to dip into your reserve fund, it will still give you peace of mind to know that it’s there.

Money keep features and reuse materials wherever you can

It’s often possible to avoid some of the more expensive jobs simply by updating the features you already have. For instance, some new handles and a lick of fresh paint or a new stain might be all you need. To elevate the look of those dated kitchen cabinets. Or, you might be able keep the same units and simply fit new cupboard doors. Be inventive, and try to keep your existing fittings and features wherever you can.

money saving
Recycle & Create a Feature

You’ll also want to think very carefully before you throw anything away. As many offcuts and scrap materials can be re-used. With a little creativity, you’ll find that all sorts of odds and ends can be repurposed. For instance, any cut-offs from your new wooden worktops can be sanded, polished. Then mounted on a wall to create stylish freestanding shelves. Curbing waste will also help to keep disposal costs to a minimum. As you’ll have less to throw in the skip or take to the tip.

Save on transport, delivery, and disposal costs

Refurbishments can generate a lot of waste, and disposing of it all can be surprisingly costly. So, wherever possible, try to find alternative ways of dealing with any rubbish. Old furniture can often be donated to charity, and lots of organisations will even collect it from your home free of charge.

Many people also opt to take their rubbish to the tip themselves. To make dealing with waste more affordable, a trailer, can help you take any rubbish straight to the tip as and when you need to, so it’s great if you don’t have the cash — or the space — to hire a skip.

“A trailer also offers more space for bulky items than the car boot, so it’s great if you want to pick up new pieces from salvage yards, or save money on delivery costs by collecting new furniture in person. It can also be a lifesaver if you need to stock up on DIY supplies mid-renovation, like power tools or lumber.”

Don’t be intimidated by DIY

Labour costs will account for a huge portion of your budget. So, where ever possible, keep costs down by tackling renovations yourself. There are wealth of online resources you can use to build up your DIY skills, so take a look at our techniques section to brush up on the basics. Becoming a dab hand at DIY projects won’t just save you money during your renovation: it will also come in handy should you need to solve any issues further down the line, meaning you’ll save even more cash in the long term.

For any complex work you’re not fully confident with, such as plumbing or rewiring, enlist the help of a local tradesperson (just be sure to get a quote first, and shop around to find the lowest price).  Then, carry out any cleaning, re-plastering, or paint touch-ups needed to finish the job.

Go bargain-hunting at salvage yards

If you’re in the habit of browsing pricey catalogue and interior design magazines for inspiration, but can’t match the hefty price tags, try shopping for materials and fittings second hand, instead.

money saving
Bag Yourself a Salvage Yard Bargain

Reclamation yards and antique shops are often treasure-troves of unique pieces, and you can find everything from tiles to kitchen sinks for a fraction of the cost of brand new versions. Remember, if you find a piece at a salvage yard that’s in a need of a little TLC, it’s often easy enough to give them a new lease of life. Wooden furniture can be re-stained or re-painted, while a good clean and polish will often refresh ceramics or metallic fittings. That vintage, reclaimed look is very fashionable right now, so you can be sure that it will give your home an on-trend feel, too.

With creativity, hard-work, and good planning, updating your home doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Take our tips on board, and you’ll be well on your way to your dream home.

Damp how to conquer it.