Want to keep your home up with the times? Then take a gander at the latest release from the National Kitchen & Bath Association: "11 Kitchen and Bath Trends for 2011."
The results of a survey of over 100 NKBA member designers, the release predicts seven kitchen trends and four bathroom trends for 2011, including Shaker styles and dark finishes in the kitchen (not simultaneously, of course) as well as quartz countertops and environmental friendliness in the bathroom.
Small steps are better than no steps. When it comes to making small steps towards a more environmentally friendly home life, the bathroom is a good place to start. We dispose of a lot of toilet paper, tissue paper and paper towels in our bathrooms. Small Steps from Marcal is a new bathroom paper product line that can make you feel less guilty about all that throwing and flushing away.
Although they've been around for a while, the new and improved Small Step line of toilet paper, tissues and paper towels is supposedly softer (for the tissue) and stronger (for the paper towels). The 100% recycled paper product's new and improved version will ship in February.
When it comes to paper towels, I'm not incredibly picky. I find that one will do the job about as well as another, so in this category I'm more inclined to pick a product like Small Steps or Seventh Generation, even if the price is a little higher.
But with toilet paper and tissues, comfort matters. Having a runny noses is bad enough - I don't need to be blowing my nose into sandpaper and turning my nose into Rudolph's.
I'll be giving Small Steps a try to see if their new line are up to my personal standards. If they are, they may have a new customer.
Do you use an environmentally paper good product in your home?
Just about every one of us has, at some time, co-habitated with one or more roommates/flatmates/housemates. Sharing dwelling space means sharing bathroom space, and it's within those confines that relationship strain can take root. In a coed situation, the toilet seat "problem" is a big one. Should it stay up? Should it stay down? Who's to say?
Georgia-Pacific is recognizing the used-up toilet paper tube as one of these bathroom-born tensions worth mention by introducing the industry's first flushable toilet paper core. Citing a research study that indicated "more than 70% of people state it's always them having to clean up the core and change the toilet roll," GP has released the Aqua Tube -- a biodegradable, fully flushable TP tube -- onto the European market.
I have mixed feelings about this latest "innovation." I understand the frustration that comes with always being the person changing out the used-up tube for a fresh roll of toilet paper. But being able to flush the tube down the toilet does nothing to lesson one's responsibility -- the tube still needs to be replaced. So flush it, throw it away or recycle it; a new tube is still getting unwrapped and put into place.
I'll give points for the biodegradability of the Aqua Flush, and I hope that claim is truthful.
I do have to call into question the findings of the research study. 70% of people are "always having to clean up the core and change the toilet roll?" I think that statistic can only actually be true if 70% of the population lived alone. Is my logic off? Weigh in, mathematicians...
What's better than taking a shower? Taking a virtual one, of course. Or, better still, washing a virtual person.
Confused? Just check out Delta's new Wash the Day Away game, where you can play around with their new In2ition Two-In-One shower head, selecting filthy characters and trying to wash them clean before time runs out. You'll then have a chance to actually win one of the new shower heads by selecting three dirty tiles to wash off (out of about 50 or so) to see if you've won. Kind of like an online scratch ticket, with a shower head instead of a penny.
I chose the Yoga Master character to clean, and no, I didn't win an In2ition. But I get to try two more times today, as you're allowed three tries per day.
Not that I'll be wasting the work day trying to win a shower head or anything...
Entrants into AARP's "Recession Remodel" Room Makeover Contest were asked to demonstrate how, even in a recession, bathrooms and kitchens can be remodeled for beauty and long-term comfort and efficiency.
The contest winners were just announced, and they include a farm house kitchen outside Charlotte, North Carolina and a bathroom redone in Snohomish, Washington. You can see images and videos of the winners at www.aarp.org/remodel.
The announcement of the winners comes at the same time that AARP released the findings from a recent poll of adults aged 45 and older concerning the home and community preferences of that age group. The results of the finding are pretty interesting. Eight of ten respondents have a full bath and bedroom on the main level of their home, a sign that folks in this age group are well aware of the growing accessibility needs associated with aging in place.
Potential homebuyers falling in this age category (or even those soon to fall into it) should be thinking about the home they are considering and if it will meet their needs down the road.
Is your home designed to handle your anticipated needs as you age?
Got a kids' bathroom you'd like to customize? Try these nifty knobs, from the aptly named Nifty Nobs. In addition to towel bars, hooks and other bathroom hardware, Nifty Nobs sells easily interchanged knobs that add a little personalized touch to any bathroom.
Got a sports nut? Try the football, basketball or baseball knob.
You'll also want to check out the company's latest product, an easy-to-install towel bar mounting system called the Convert>able Bath Accessory. To see how easy it is to install their sleek hardware, check out this video on their website. No clips or miniature set screws to mess with.
Although the emphasis here is on the interchangeable hardware nob for use in a kids' bathroom, there are plenty of basic shaped knobs and decorative knobs for the adult in you, too.
The company is calling this a revolutionary bathroom product. It certainly puts a couple twists on the bathroom hardware category.
What do you think? Would you add Nifty Nobs to your bathroom?