Vibrant Colors Highlight Your Sense Of Style
a bright idea: Give your home some added zest by repainting your
rooms in the latest shades. From bold and elegant to eclectic
and worldly, paint today comes in a range of color palettes and
décor styles to serve as creative inspiration for your next
help, color expert Erika Woelfel, director of color marketing
for Behr Paints, identified four trends as the top styles to
foster creative expression in the home:
• Classic Caprice—Pay homage to traditional design elements
while incorporating a fun, modern twist with Classic Caprice. A
new take on elegance, this trend creates an appealing contrast
of old and new by adding spice to formal rooms with sizzling
magenta walls or painting black borders to frame the wall and
showcase the architectural details. Traditional antique accents
and sleek furnishings amplify this contrast, creating a space
that is ornate yet still warm and welcoming.
• Color Metric—Inspired by the popular color blocking
fashion trend, Color Metric uses geometry to create unique
graphic appeal. By adding a “punch” of color to cool and neutral
tones, this trend adds depth, balance and soft complexity to
Neutral gray walls create a background and vibrant blue cabinets
take center stage. Dark plum creates depth, while a light cognac
brown balances with soft complexity. The result is a visually
stunning and vibrant look.
• Sweet Jazz—The retro themed Sweet Jazz is a nod to the
days of art deco living. Feminine colors and streamlined motifs
capture the fun and flirtation of the 1920s. Pastel jade and
light pink add just the right amount of nostalgia, while dark
navy trim adds a note of staccato. Polished chrome fixtures,
oriental rugs and exotic flower patterns accent this theme,
transporting homeowners back to the days of flapper dresses and
• Après Ski—Warm, muted tones add comfort and hominess to
this woodsy oasis. Après Ski’s lived-in look provides the
perfect barrier from a cold, snowy night that can be enjoyed
year round. Forest green
showcases natural wood and rustic materials. Kitschy red, teal
and lime keep the mood light and upbeat. Must-have décor
elements include cozy seating, plush pillows and low lighting.
Eclectic accent pieces create a cozy environment and a seemingly
effortless doesn’t-quite-go-together appearance.
Behr Paints 2013 Color Trends with 20 new original colors and
four inspirational design styles are currently available at The
Home Depot stores nationwide. Also, look for the 2013 Color
Trend Card, an accompanying brochure with detailed décor themes
plus design and decorating tips to help consumers visualize each
further the visual experience, you can follow a QR code found on
the back of the Trend Card brochure or go online to watch a
video that brings the themes to life. More information can also
be found atwww.behr.com/2013Trends.
What’s more, the ColorSmart by BEHR Mobile application,
available as a free download for iPhone, iPad and Android
compatible devices, helps users find the right color at the
touch of a finger. The company is on Facebook at facebook.com/BehrPaint and
on Twitter at twitter.com/BehrPaint.
Visit Behr’s blog atwww.colorfullybehr.com for
insights on all things color.
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Regional Color Palettes Inspired by Your
choosing a paint palette for your home, you may find that the
colors you prefer are influenced by the outdoor environments you
enjoy spending time.
Whether it’s the city skyline or the soft shades of a pleasing
landscape, you are naturally drawn to paint colors you recognize
from your favorite places. The use of regional color palettes
allows you to evoke the feel of a certain location by grouping
ideal complementary colors.
According to color expert Dee Schlotter for The Voice of Color,
PPG Pittsburgh Paints, through a concept known as synesthesia,
people develop automatic responses to colors based on past
experiences, causing every color to convey a unique emotion.
What is your dream vacation? If your mind conjures up images of
a getaway to the lakes, beaches and vineyards of the Great Lakes
of Michigan, then you may prefer the quiet colors in the
landscape, represented by shades like Rendezvous, a graceful
blue; and Soleil, a sandy beige.
does a trip to Charleston, South
Carolina, to explore the city’s historic
homes and architectural landmarks sound more appealing? If so,
you might like to bring the beauty of Charleston’s Southern
grace and style to your design with the rosy pink shade of Withers Mansion or
Parade Deck, a grassy green.
about a trip to Nashville, Tennessee,
to experience the bright, lively cityscapes? Nashville’s
landscape is enveloped in colors that will excite your senses,
such as Tiger Tail, a bright orange; and Forsythia Blossom, an
Whatever your dream vacation looks like, regional color
palettes, such as those found in The Voice of Color collections,
can provide you with the ability to reflect color schemes from
around the world and allow you to appreciate faraway settings in
your own living space.
If you appreciate colors outside your home, then you will
probably also like decorating with them.
Sometimes, looking at colors in groupings helps you find the
vision you are trying to express.
Regional color palettes allow you to bring colors from outside
in, helping to recreate the feeling of favorite outdoor spots.
The unique color schemes of each region often provide ideal
complementary colors, offering the natural look each geographic
area is known for.
learn more, visit www.voiceofcolor.com.
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A Colorful Range Can Spice Up
ruby red to ultramarine blue, many professional chefs are
turning to brightly colored ranges to turn up the heat in their
That’s the word from a company that’s known for making
chef-quality, high-performing residential ranges in over 190
different colors. The good news is that even if you’re not a
professional chef, you can still have a range in just about any
color you desire that provides a professional kitchen
The manufacturer, BlueStar, has an interactive website tool that
allows consumers to customize a new range just the way they want
it-from the intensity of the burners to the color of the knobs
and the range itself-before buying.
designed to provide the home chef with a cooking experience that
matches a restaurant kitchen environment. Its UltraNova power
burners provide up to 22,000 BTUs of cooking power for
consistent, controlled heat and shorter cooking times. And for
delicate soups and sauces there is a gentle 130-degree simmer
It even offers made-to-order customizable colors. Such a range
lets homeowners have a “one-of-a-kind” professional-grade
appliance that makes an eye-catching design statement as well.
For those who want the latest trends in their kitchen decor, the
company even offers ranges in seasonal colors. As announced by
the world-renowned authority on color and provider of color
systems, Pantone, popular colors currently include Tangerine
Tango, Honey Gold and what is described as a BlueStar classic:
To learn more, visit www.bluestarcooking.com.
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Regimen For Your House
a “youthful” home through preventative maintenance can save you
money in costly repairs and preserve its overall value.
So where’s the best place to start? Here are some ideas:
• Regular checkups are key. Get
out your binoculars and look for shingles that are buckled,
curled, blistered or missing an excessive amount of granules. If
left unrepaired, these damaged shingles could result in leaks
into your attic and further into your house, resulting in mold
and rot. Get a roofing contractor to check that your roof is in
• Protect against fading and stains. New
exterior building materials used in siding, fence and decking
products can help maintain a long-lasting, vibrant appearance.
Available in many outstanding, vibrant colors, EverNew cellular
PVC and composite decking from CertainTeed is backed by a
25-year Stain-and-Fade Resistance warranty, ensuring a dynamic
outdoor oasis for many years to come.
• Use impact-resistant shingles for a healthy roof. They
help provide a more durable, stronger roof to protect your home
from hail, falling debris and high winds. For example, Landmark
Solaris IR meets the industry’s highest standards for impact
resistance. In addition, it repels the sun’s rays and lowers the
surface temperature of a roof by up to 20 degrees during warm
• Choose durable siding materials. One,
Cedar Impressions siding, is molded from real cedar shingles and
designed and tested to withstand hurricane-force winds. The
siding is also virtually maintenance free, never needs painting
and is backed with a lifetime-limited warranty.
• Address problem spots. If
not properly insulated, an attic can be a huge drain on your
monthly energy bill and compromise the overall comfort of your
home. Online tools, such as www.certainteed.com/itools,
can help guide you through the process of ensuring your home has
Keep these tips in mind and you may find that your home can
provide you and your family more comfort at less cost.
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Modern Vent-Free Fireplaces Provide Heat And Comfort
increasing number of families are warming to the idea of using
vent-free gas appliances for supplemental home heat. These
environmentally friendly options can give high heating costs the
cold shoulder and keep homes warm and comfortable.
Unlike traditional fireplaces, which require venting from the
firebox to the exterior of the house through an outside wall or
the roof, vent-free appliances can be installed in a wide
variety of places in the home. That means, the Vent-Free Gas
Products Alliance reports,
costs of vent-free products can be up to 60 percent less than
vented heating appliances.
“Vent-free technology operates at 99 percent efficiency, meaning
it delivers 99 cents worth of heat for every dollar of energy
cost,” explained Jess Baldwin, vice president of sales for
Monessen Hearth Systems Company, a leading supplier of hearth
products for Vermont Castings, Majestic andMonnessen brands.
“Vent-free products are always a popular choice for people
looking to save money and choose an environmentally friendly
What You Can Get
sorts of vent-free products are available to fit any home’s
décor and heating preference. For example:
Vent-free gas fireplaces offer flexibility in size, placement
(mounting to an interior or exterior wall) and design. They’re
often less expensive to purchase and allow for a faster, less
disruptive setup in new or remodeled homes.
Vent-free gas fireplace inserts are a great choice for homes
with existing masonry fireplaces because they’re easy to
install, result in increased heating efficiency and replicate
the look of a traditional wood-burning fireplace with a modern
vent-free gas log set can transform a wood-burning fireplace
into an efficient heat source. Log sets maintain the warmth and
ambience of a wood-burning fireplace without the mess and labor.
vent-free gas stove provides a unique décor option and delivers
reliable home heating with the flexibility to fit any space,
from contemporary to vintage. With no need for a flue, vent-free
gas stoves can be installed almost anywhere in a room.
“Vent-free fireplaces use great technology that gives owners a
simple alternative to traditional fireplaces and the hassles
that can sometimes accompany their installation,” said Baldwin.
Vent-free fireplaces safely meet the most-recognized U.S. indoor
air quality guidelines and also have built-in safety devices,
assuring proper gas flow and operation. They’re permanently
connected to a natural gas or propane fuel line—among the
cleanest of all fossil fuels, according to the U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency.
How You Can Save
Vent-free products also offer the possibility of zone
heating—you can heat the rooms you use the most with an
alternate heat source. The American Council for an
Energy-Efficient Economy found this sort of system can provide
energy savings of up to 40 percent. Vent-free fireplaces,
inserts, log sets and stoves keep all the heat they produce
inside the house instead of sending the warm air up a chimney.
further information on vent-free home heating products, see the
Monessen Hearth Systems Company brands’ websites:www.vermontcastings.com, www.majesticproducts.com andwww.monessenhearth.com.
Additional information and statistics from the Vent-Free Gas
Products Alliance are at www.ventfree.org.
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Comfortable, Healthy And Quiet—The Geothermal Environment
home heated and cooled with a geothermal heating and cooling
system is a comfortable home. That’s because a geothermal system
provides precise distribution of air, eliminating hot and cold
spots throughout the home.
Geothermal systems take advantage of free solar energy stored
just below the surface of the earth. Using a series of pipes (an
earth loop) buried in the ground, the system extracts heat from
the ground and distributes it through a home, using a
conventional duct system. This same heat energy can also be used
for a radiant floor system or domestic hot water heating,
reducing heating and cooling bills by as much as 70 percent. In
the cooling mode, the heating process is reversed-heat is
extracted from the air in the home and either moved back into
the earth loop or used to preheat the water in a hot water tank.
geothermal system runs more frequently than other heating and
cooling systems and at lower speeds, which means the air is
always circulating through the house to reduce hot and cold
spots as it increases comfort levels. Constant circulation also
means air inside the home regularly circulates through the air
filter, improving indoor air quality (IAQ). In addition, the
system does not require combustion and therefore produces none
of the products associated with combustion, including carbon
monoxide, which can negatively impact the air you breathe. Nor
does it require a system to vent carbon monoxide and other
dangerous exhaust gases.
a host of IAQ products to further enhance a home’s indoor
environment. Filters and air cleaners capture airborne allergens
and contaminants, while heat-recovery ventilators are designed
to move stale, contaminated air from inside your home to the
outside and draw fresh air from the outside, filter it and
deliver it throughout your house.
unlike many conventional air conditioners or heat pumps, a
geothermal heating and cooling system is quiet, requiring no
noisy and unsightly outdoor units to disturb your outside
environment or your neighbors. Instead, all equipment is located
inside, conveniently sized and constructed for quiet, efficient
learn how a geothermal home comfort system can ensure a
comfortable, healthy, quiet home year-round, visit www.waterfurnace.com or
talk to aWaterFurnace expert
at (800) GEO-SAVE.
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live in a “plugged-in” society. Our lives are filled with dozens
of electronic devices and gadgets, not to mention the critical
systems that keep our homes up and running. With our
ever-growing dependence on electricity, the need for reliable
backup power is more important than ever, especially for those
who operate home-based businesses or people with medical needs.
What To Do
Fortunately, even in the event of a power outage due to severe
weather or other emergency, you do have options:
1. A portable generator is
great for camping, tailgating or other situations where
temporary power comes in handy. If used in a home setting, a
portable generator can power a few items like a refrigerator or
sump pump, but is not designed to power an entire home. A
portable generator is manually operated and runs on gasoline,
which means you have to fill it every few hours during a power
outage. All electronic items must be plugged into the unit using
properly rated extension cords and the unit must be kept outside
to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
2. A standby generator, which
many experts feel is the best option for homeowners or small businesses, permanently
connects to your home, similar to a central air-conditioning
unit. It runs on propane or natural gas and connects directly to
existing fuel lines. When utility power is lost, a standby
generator automatically turns on, typically within 10
seconds—you don’t have to be home to operate the unit. Depending
on the size, a standby generator can power an entire home or a
few key systems or appliances.
standby generator is basically a power plant in your backyard,”
said Ed Del Grande, a home improvement expert and host on the
DIY Network. “No matter what Mother Nature brings, you can rest
easy knowing you have access to safe, reliable power.”
What To Look For
you’re thinking about getting a standby generator, there are a
few things you should look for:
commercial-grade engine for durability and clean, consistent
An attractive design. The unit will be installed outside your
home, so looks matter.
An extended warranty. Look for a standby generator that is
backed for a minimum of five years.
Where to Learn More
Leading manufacturers like Kohler make it easy to research, size
and price standby generators. You can find informational videos,
sizing calculators and other helpful tools at www.KohlerGenerators.com.
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Simple Steps That Can Cut Energy Costs
good news for homeowners. By taking a few practical steps, they
can help to put a lid on rising energy costs.
According to the ENERGY STAR program, the typical U.S. household
spends approximately $1,300 per year on home energy bills—and 50
to 70 percent of that is spent on heating and cooling.
Fortunately, one of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to
reduce energy use at home is to ensure that your home is
Starting At The Top
From attics to basement walls to floors over crawl spaces, there
are many areas of the home that can benefit from proper
insulation. One of the more important places to start is the
attic. It’s the most accessible and least expensive to insulate.
Some recommend using a
insulation, such as CertainTeed’s InsulSafe SP,
which boasts superior thermal efficiency and sound control.
Adding insulation can also qualify homeowners for rebates and
tax credits. Check out www.certainteed.com/itools to
find out what incentives are available in your area.
A Helpful Energy Audit
Another resource is the Residential Energy Services Network, or ResNet.
It offers certified auditors who can help homeowners evaluate a
home to determine where and how energy is being lost.
audit can also find out what systems are operating inefficiently
and what cost-effective improvements—such as adding
insulation-can be implemented to enhance comfort and lower
more energy-saving tips or to find a contractor, visitwww.certainteed.com/insulation or
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