Lighting for SeniorsWritten by Paul Forte
Lighting for seniors requires attention to some specific details. When planning a lighting design for aging baby boomers we want to provide both adequate light to see clearly and a safe environment. With a combination of recessed, pendant, track and wall fixtures, these needs can be met. It is very important that certain areas be well lit. Areas like stairs and bathrooms where so many accidents occur or basements, which are usually dark. Kitchens require a great deal of light so food can be prepared safely. It is fact that as we age our eyes needs change and we need more light to see properly. What may be suitable at 25 may not be good enough at 40 and what may work at 40, just won’t cut it at age 60. Task lighting can help in a kitchen by installing under cabinet lights. A good choice for under cabinet lights is fluorescent for simple reason that they require very little maintenance. This is another important aspect to consider. We want to try to choose lighting that requires very little maintenance and does not require tools to change bulbs. Placing light fixtures in a location that makes it easy to reach to change light bulbs is also a good choice. Wall sconces are a good choice to solve this problem. A wall sconce placed in a stairway for instance can provide light as well as eliminate need for a ladder to change light bulb. Everyone has different needs and this is only a general guide. It is important to meet needs of each individual situation. There may be special needs that require special solutions. A person who is wheelchair bound may need lower and reachable switches. Perhaps remote control lighting is a good solution in some cases. This can be extremely useful in a bedroom. By using a remote, a person can turn lights on and turn them off after getting into bed. Wall sconces can be a solution in other rooms as well. Two wall sconces; one on each side of vanity does a great job of illuminating room and ease of bulb replacement. Just be sure when choosing a fixture that wall sconce has an open top or bottom so bulb can be replaced without having to remove parts. A bar light above vanity with exposed bulbs is another good alternative. The fixtures you want to try and avoid are those in which small screws need to be loosened or removed to get to bulb.
How to Brighten Your Decor with Hand Painted Ceramic TileWritten by Dy Witt
At one time, ceramic tile was only for wealthy. No more. Today, for same price as you will pay for manufactured cast resin, imitation marble or other polymer, you can have a one-of-a-kind piece of fine art, made by an American artist who is willing to work with YOUR ideas and concepts. Suppose you love plants and flowers, but wall over your sink in kitchen has no window? Tell artist your favorites, she will paint your favorite ferns or perennials, in a basket or within its own little garden. What if you moved south and miss your paper birch trees so badly? A mural over your bathroom sink of these gorgeous white and black trees, with or without surrounding fall foliage, will guarantee a lifetime of perfect view. No wall space for a mural? How about accent tiles placed every foot or so of your favorite cooking herbs in an 1800's style, right out of Farmer's Almanac? Or an easy-to-clean backsplash behind kitchen sink of fruits connected by flowering vines all in a lively color scheme?
The best part about tile is you only have to do it once. You choose timeless and tireless motifs and place them where you need something durable. Side-by-side with gold, ceramic is most durable substance we know. What else has told us history of human culture as accurately? Nothing manufacturers have come up with can surpass ceramic tile for lasting beauty. Nothing.
Working with an artist as opposed to a factory has many benefits. The artist has sentimental memories too, and usually does work she does for other reasons than moving out volumes of product for profit, so she is more than happy to fill your space with warm homey decoration. We all have a favorite old pattern or print, maybe Grandma's stitching or an old tapestry. Everything eventually wears out and must be discarded. Except ceramic. Have it painted on tile and installed for all time.