Cuckoo Clocks for your home

There’s something about a cuckoo clock that piques a person’s imagination. People either think they’re gaudy or they love ’em. But they all stop and look at them. In our modern mass-produced world, cuckoo clocks stand out as impressive displays of skilled labor. Unfortunately, you don’t find that much anymore. Just look at the site clockshoppes.com

The price from 1-26-2011 depends on the amount of hand carving, music and animation. A clock embellished with a chalet that has individually carved shutters will cost more than one without that feature. Anyone willing to work into a busy schedule the chore of winding a clock by hand – every day on 30-hour models and about once a week on those with an eight-day mechanism – probably is thinking more about the nostalgic aspect of a cuckoo clock than practical considerations.

Many people initially are drawn to cuckoo clocks for the way they sound, that happy Old- World bird’s call achieved through a series of weights and counterbalances triggered most often when a clock strikes the hour. Customers who purchase cuckoos are all across the board, from younger couples to their grandparents. But they all seem to have in common that, first, they can appreciate something unusual. Sometimes half-forgotten memories surface, perhaps of a parent having one in the house when they were growing up or at least having heard one as a child.

Children seem to be drawn to cuckoos. But watch out: In order for a cuckoo clock to run properly, the weight chains have to hang down almost to the floor, presenting a pretty tempting invitation to a child as something to play with or yank on.

Of course, the value of antique or vintage cuckoos handed down as family heirlooms needs to be evaluated on an individual basis. As with many collectibles, it can vary widely depending on how well a timepiece has been cared for.

Frames can improve your decor prints

Before you visit a frame shop you need to do some home work, literally. Think about where it’s going to hang in the house. This is important from both an artistic and practical point of view. On the artistic side, preselecting a spot for your artwork will help you choose the best frame for both the print and the room. It will give you a sense of the overall design depending on whether the room is traditional, formal or contemporary.

But there are practical considerations as well, specifically whether the room is bright or damp. If a piece is very valuable and will be in a room with high light, you should consider a UV reflective glass. Though it’s more expensive, it’s worth it to protect your frame and print.

If a paper print is destined for a bathroom or kitchen, you need more matting or spacers between the print and the glass to prevent condensation from getting on the artwork, which could then stick to the glass. And because of moisture and potential splatters, I would avoid hanging giclee prints in these rooms because they have no glass to protect them.

Try to keep an open mind. No matter where you go, photos on canvas are “investments”. To get the best job possible, let the framer be creative in making suggestions for you artwork. You may find the style you like most is one you would never have chosen yourself.

I like the artwork to shine out, so I do the framing as simply as possible. The image, especially a photograph, should have a lot of space around it. I wish people would be more understanding about the quality of paper, which will change due to humidity. Seal the covering glass to matting at edges to prevent moisture from getting in. Mold can stain the paper. It’s important to have artwork regularly cleaned and maintained.

Please, visit point101.com. There you can find a lot of information about canvas prints, switchframes, giclee and perspex prints. You can upload your photos online and you will get high quality prints.

Quilts and quiltmaking. What makes one bedcover better than another?

Quilts are thought to have originated some 200 years ago in rural areas where women out of necessity turned patches of discarded cloth and clothing into bedcovers both decorative and warm. Comforting in its simplicity, the patchwork quilt embodies the best of the can-do American spirit.

Quiltmaking almost died out in the early 1900s, until a concern for preserving America’s own crafts led the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City to open its American Wing in 1924. This prompted the first revival of collecting and making quilts.

The very modern American women of the 1920s rising middle class were newly able to afford ready-made clothing and dry goods and had to be persuaded. So women’s magazines promoted quiltmaking with images of smartly dressed women choosing quick projects such as patchwork pillows and ready-cut quilt kits.

In the 1930s quiltmaking surged again, this time because of the Great Depression. Making do was the order of the day, and creating quilts fit the bill. Mail-order companies and daily newspapers sold copies of hundreds of new patterns. Quilt contests attracted thousands of quilts, and not just from rural areas. Sales of thread, cloth and batting soared for a while.

Quiltmaking suffered its next decline during World War II when the domestic sale of cloth was restricted. At the same time, many women took wartime jobs out of their homes; when the war was over they weren’t enthusiastic about jumping back on the quilting bandwagon.

In fact, quilts and quiltmaking didn’t come back into vogue until the nation prepared to celebrate its bicentennial in 1976. Once again, the quilt was looked at as a way to inspire pride in America’s traditions and heritage.

That’s about the time I had my quilt awakening.

My modern mother sewed clothes for my sisters and me in the 1950s but never made a quilt. Although a modern young woman myself, living and working in a bustling, urban setting, I succumbed to the back-to- earth movement of the 1970s and learned to weave and knit. One Saturday morning in 1974 while I window-shopped, a brown-and-green North Carolina Lily quilt caught my eye and my heart. Its unconventional design and colors grabbed me.

I walked into that store, handed over $100 and walked out with a quilt under my arm. What have I done? I wondered. I’d spent a lot of money for a quilt that wasn’t even meant for my bed. I planned to hang it on the wall above my loom!

Without intending to, I had started a quilt collection that would soon grow and grow. I had also made a life discovery: I was so inspired by quilts, their makers and their stories, that I soon quit my job to research and write about quilts and quilting.

Back then I thought I was different from others because I decorated with oversized quilts, but I soon found a major quilt revival already under way, fueled by baby boomers who had discovered America’s folk heritage. In 1974 the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City organized a groundbreaking exhibit of quilts made by anonymous artisans. Stores with fabrics, tools, books and classes opened to serve the special needs of quilters. Quilt magazines provided patterns and support for the quiltmaking movement, and annual quilt festivals attracted tens of thousands of people.

Quilt guilds formed, including the American Quilt Study Group in Mill Valley, Calif., a network of quilt historians who exchange and publish their quilt findings. A nationwide grassroots campaign soon launched to record stories and photograph quilts.

The late-20th-century resurgence of interest in quilting prompted a plethora of books by academics and enthusiasts, exhibits across the country and documentary films chronicling quilting’s history, artisans, designs and their meanings, and techniques.

All this attention to America’s historic quilts has led to an increase in collecting and preserving quilts and a growing interest in quiltmaking that will continue for generations. And why not? Quilts have a magnetism all their own. Maybe it’s the familiarity of their components or the excitement of seeing the larger pattern emerge as the pieces are sewn together. Maybe it’s the storytelling that goes on around a frame or the joy of seeing hard work admired and loved. Maybe it’s the recognition of women’s ingenuity and craftsmanship. Maybe it’s the satisfaction of continuing a tradition and creating a legacy.

Wood Window Blinds

It’s no surprise window blinds comprise nearly half of all window coverings currently installed in homes.

It’s also no surprise that white remains the bestselling color. It may surprise some dealers, however, to know one of the hottest trends in window blind styles is in wood and faux wood blinds.

While the style has become increasingly appealing to homeowners in the past several years, many home centers seem not to have noticed. They should. Retailers who’ve been successful with them say they offer many benefits over standard plastic or aluminum blinds.

The faux wood blinds last longer than standard blinds, they’re more stylish and easier to buy because they look good in most rooms without having to be color-matched to the rest of the room. In addition, they’re higher-priced, higher-margin items that appeal to upscale consumers.

Wood blinds are more of an investment for consumers than aluminum and PVC window blinds. Customers are investing in them like a furniture purchase. Sometimes, wood blinds can be financed with the house, the same way you can with shutters.

It’s that shutter look, in part, that’s fueling some of the growth in wood blinds. The wider the slats get on window blinds, the more they look like shutters. The more they look like shutters, the more they remind consumers of their parents’ homes.

People are going back to things that remind them of the past. Our parents didn’t have any other options but wood shutters. Wood blinds have that southern charm and feel that works with nature. It’s bringing the feeling of the environment back to the house, a warmth (over windows) that shutters are too heavy for.

In addition, wood blinds provide an airy, open look to homes. As sunlight brightens rooms, wood blinds help create a pleasant living space.

Customers appreciate the quality look of wood blinds. Wood blinds don’t look as inexpensive as the standard blinds you can pick up at any discount store. Wood blinds look nicer.

For those who want that look without the cost, imitation wood blinds are the answer. Some consumers like the fact that they offer the look of wood without using natural resources.

Imitation wood blinds have other advantages in certain applications. You can’t put real wood blinds in the kitchen, because a lot of water and humidity can make them warp.

Security Tapes

Manufacturers, specifiers and installers of windows and conservatories could benefit from the product innovation and high level of technical expertise available on the stand.

Double Sided Foam Security Tape is launching a double sided PVCu foam security tape used for securing insulated glass units into PVCu or aluminum window frames.

Developed with leading window manufacturers, the tape provides excellent adhesion and offers increased security against burglary.

Security Tape offers improved security performance because it has the adhesive applied directly to the foam during manufacture. This makes it extremely difficult to remove the glass unit once it has been positioned.

Almost as quick and easy to apply as a wedge gasket, the double sided tape is a cost effective alternative to conventional methods of glass installation.

It was also introduced a new anti-dust tape to seal multi- wall polycarbonate sheets in conservatory roofs. Anti-dust tape eliminates the possibility of dust particles and insects collecting in the otherwise hollow structure.

Constructed with slots down the centre of the tape and covered by a non-woven filter membrane, the tape allows moisture to pass through the structure but helps prevent algae forming.

The filter membrane has a pore size no larger than 45 microns and tiny welded reinforcements in the mesh prevent the pores opening up if the tape is stretched during application.

Originally introduced five years ago, the system has proved very successful and is now considered a standard part of any multi-wall polycarbonate roof construction.

The tape is used in conjunction with a non-perforated blanking tape along the top edge of the sheet providing a complete and effective sealing system.

Manufactured from a plastic material, it contracts and expands with the polycarbonate sheets. This in-turn minimizes stress on the bond promoting the life of the product up to 20 years.