Exotic Ranch House Blends Rustic Chic and California Cool

When Sylvia Beez of M.A.P. Interiors redesigned this 1970s ranch house, she combined a rustic-chic look with the California appeal of the area hosting this warm, welcoming, personality-filled home. The living room screams “rustic refined,” whereby each element that would typically be classified as “county” boasts a modern edge – the vaulted wood ceiling, painted white; the concrete floor, polished to a sleek sheen; and the stone fireplace, which takes shape a contemporary shape and becomes a modern focal point. A wall of windows floods … (read more)

Rainforest Hotel Built in the Trees: Tree House Point

Have you ever dreamed of living in the trees, high in the canopy of an old growth forest? This hotel, Tree House Point, offers private cabins in the air just 22 miles from Seattle WA in Fall City. There are six tree house cabins to choose from: The Temple of the Blue Moon, Trillium, The Nest, The Upper Pond, Bon Bibi or The Burl, each with their own charms. The Temple of the Blue Moon was the inaugural cabin, hand built by Peter Nelson who, with his wife … (read more)

Tiny POD House Arrives Fully Assembled

Robust Outdoor Brands – a Swiss design firm – has come out with this charming “PODhouse” – with a very small footprint. They arrive fully assembled, you just open the door. Aren’t they just the sweetest little cabins? Now you can buy that piece of land in the woods that you’ve always dreamed of, and put the PODhouse on it. Voila – instant retreat. Originally designed for camping in the Swiss Alps, you can rest assured it will hold up to winter and provide year-round enjoyment. Or you … (read more)

Platform 5 Architects Build Book Tower House

So many books, so little time! The book tower in the middle of this house by Platform 5 Architects is nothing short of amazing. Walls of books wrap around a wooden staircase in this North London home. There are so many books, it almost looks like a professional library. Just think of how long you could keep yourself busy, simply lounging around and reading. Sounds like the perfect vacation to us. The bookshelves are made from oak and they hug the staircase, with a landing in the middle … (read more)

Are you allergic to house dust?

Are you allergic to house dust?

Have you sealed your home tight against cold winter drafts? That can lead to stale, allergen-laden indoor air. If you’re coughing, sneezing or wheezing, your body’s immune system might be overreacting to rising levels of house dust and the allergy-causing particles they harbor. Vacuuming at least weekly and taking other steps can help reduce your exposure, says Thomas A. E. Platts-Mills, M.D., Ph.D., professor of medicine at the University of Virginia and indoor-allergy expert. (See our new vacuum Ratings to find a … (read more)

Eclectic Seaside House Design

There is a unwritten rule which says that Mediterranean houses must be flat-roofed and painted white. This holiday house, designed by Codo a Codo Arquitectura is no exception to the rule. The house has two floors, out of which the ground floor is dedicated to the social area and the upstairs to the private area. The house is painted white on the outside
and the inside, and the floors are covered with beige-grey tiles for a cool feeling in the summer. The floor treatment … (read more)

Retro Modern House with Black and White Interior Palette

We love the mix of modern and retro found in the Toronto home of interior designer and architect Stephane Chamard. The warm, eclectic atmosphere comes via classical architecture which is modernized with black paint and funky furnishings. We particularly love this interior because it looks lived in, not just some nondescript space styled for a magazine photo shoot. The home’s predominantly black and white palette boasts flashes of bold color here and there – an orange console table, a red lounge chair, and vibrant artwork … (read more)

Put your house on an energy diet

Put your house on an energy diet

January is the traditional time for belt-tightening and waist watching. To offset your holiday expenses, you may also want to take a look at ways to trim your bloated utility bill. Adjusting your home heating to your schedule is one way as is switching to more energy-efficient lightbulbs and appliances. Here are some tips from the experts at Consumer Reports and the Department of Energy.

Energy-saving thermostats
Programmable thermostats can trim about $ 180 a year from your energy bill by … (read more)