2011 Articles

(ARA) - No matter the size or style of your home, the decor you choose determines its atmosphere and reflects your own personality. Updating or changing your decor can give you a sense of pride and satisfaction when completed. But redesigning your living space can also be slightly overwhelming. You may think you don't have the time or funds to redecorate, but there are several ways to rejuvenate your interior without spending a great deal of time or money.

Paint power

Creating or changing the feel of a room begins with the canvas of your home - the walls. For a dramatic change with minimal cost, give your walls a bright splash of color that complements the furniture and fabric in the room. Dutch Boy can help you find the perfect hue with its Color Simplicity tool, which allows you to apply different color combinations to various room images including kitchens, living rooms, bathrooms and bedrooms. Change the trim and accessory colors to get an even better idea of what your room will look like with a fresh coat of paint. Browse the expansive color library by family or collection, or choose from the 2011 Color Trends palette to experiment and find your perfect shade of paint. You can save your favorite projects and order paint samples in seconds, or continue to try out new combinations.

Frame of mind

If you're like many, you have boxes upon boxes of photographs. But why keep them hidden? Look for fun or fancy frames to showcase those cherished memories and people, and place them on end tables or hang on your newly painted walls. If you have a large area of bare space, consider having an especially meaningful picture enlarged, matted and framed as a focal point of the room. With endless styles and sizes available, spread a variety of pictures throughout the room to create a personal and inviting atmosphere.

Throw in some style

Once you've decided on a color scheme for your room, spice things up with throw pillows in contrasting or complementary shades. Throw pillows are an easy and inexpensive way to add some personality to your space, so look for fabrics and styles that most appeal to your inner designer. You can mix and match solid and patterned fabrics in a variety of materials, and you might even buy different pillows for each season. A few bold pillows can go a long way in renewing a room for minimal cost.

Seat recovery

That old armchair with the worn-out seat. The sofa with the huge dark stain. Dad's hideous but oh-so cozy recliner. Comfort may have nothing to do with style, but you don't need to live with an eyesore for the sake of your seat. Reupholstering a chair or sofa is a much more cost-effective solution than purchasing new furniture, but it can take time and may not be feasible depending on the seat design. If you aren't confident in your upholstering skills, a slipcover is an instant solution that requires almost no time. Slipcovers for furniture of all sizes and shapes are available in a wide variety of colors, designs and fabrics.

Even if you're tight on time and cash, a few updates can make a dramatic difference in your home's overall appearance. Don't be afraid to tap into your inner design and make an individual statement that reflects your own unique taste and personality.

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(ARA) - Of course you love your pets, but let's face it: Sometimes they smell. And whether you are hosting guests or trying to sell your home, the last thing you want visitors to remember is an offensive odor. Luckily, there are a number of ways to eliminate those less-than-pleasant pet odors and let your home's personality shine.

Refreshing walls

Paint is one of the most dramatic and cost-effective ways to give your home's interior a new look, and now it can also give your home a new fresh scent. Dutch Boy's Refresh paint features odor-eliminating technology from Arm & Hammer. It reduces odors caused by pets and other sources, keeping your home smelling as good as it looks. Proven to reduce household smells, a coat of Refresh paint will prevent bad odors from lingering for months. By trapping and neutralizing odor molecules, this paint doesn't cover up unappealing smells, but actually reduces them. And Refresh paint is available in Dutch Boy's broad range of colors, so you can reduce unpleasant smells without compromising your decorating taste.

Clean with steam

Even if your pet isn't allowed on the furniture, your home furnishing fabrics are holding onto unpleasant scents. Though you may vacuum regularly, animal hair and dander are trapped in the fibers of your cushions, curtains, sofa and other decor. Using a steam cleaner is the best way to eliminate bad smells in upholstered furniture and other items that cannot be laundered. Hire a professional service to treat the common areas in your home, or purchase a steam cleaner specifically designed for pet hair removal. Deep-clean common area fabrics several times each year, and to help maintain a fresh smell day to day, use an odor-neutralizing fabric spray regularly.

Hit the floor

The biggest source of your home's objectionable smell could be right under your feet. As anyone who has house-trained a pet knows, they don't always get it right, and sometimes those accidents go unnoticed and cause stains to inevitably set in. To remove odors of any age, scrub bare floors with white vinegar and water or an odor-neutralizing cleaner, and thoroughly wash carpets and rugs using an odor-neutralizing shampoo. You can also hire a professional to clean the carpets and provide extra deodorizing treatments. If stains or smells remain, you'll likely need to replace the carpet and padding. If this is the case, be sure to scrub the floor beneath before laying new carpet down. After the carpet has been thoroughly cleaned or replaced, regularly use carpet deodorizer formulated for pet odors when vacuuming.

Scented accessories

Tie a ribbon on your odor-free home with strategically placed candles and air fresheners. Choose classic scents that complement your decor, and use a variety throughout the home to avoid an overpowering result. Many candles and fresheners offer odor-neutralizing technology as well as pleasant scents, ensuring unfavorable smells are not only covered up but eliminated. Jars of potpourri or scented crystals add touches of personality to any room decor as well.

No matter what types or the number of pets that share your home, these tips will help keep it smelling fresh all year round.

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Everyone will agree: This winter was long, hard and ugly. Chances are you're looking for something to make things seem a little less dreary now that spring is slowly making its appearance. And there's no better place to start than with your home's interior.

"Brightening up your living space is one of the best ways to embrace the change of seasons after a seemingly endless winter," says Rachel Skafidas, color and design specialist for Dutch Boy Paints. "In particular, the introduction of crisp, new paint color throughout your home can usher in an almost instantaneous feeling of renewal to your surroundings."

What's best, adding revitalizing color doesn't have to be expensive or complicated.

"One of the easiest and most cost effective ways to give a room an entirely new appearance is with paint," Skafidas notes. "For a few dollars and within a few hours, any space can take on a completely updated look and feel. This year, Dutch Boy has made it even easier by creating a special palette of four spring-inspired colors to help simplify your seasonal design projects."

From the blue hues of early spring skies; to the vibrant greens bursting outside your windows, you can effortlessly incorporate springtime nature into your home, whether you're painting walls, trim or looking for accent colors that pop. This year's spring color palette includes: Pursuit of Happiness, Fresh Linen, Weathered Wicker and Aubusson Vine.

Capture it with Color

After enduring months of gray, dull weather, nothing revives a room more than a paint color named Pursuit of Happiness. This neutral, grayed blue offers a cool, refreshing feel to any space when combined with a warm, welcoming neutral, such as Fresh Linen. Together the pairing creates a perfectly balanced blend that can uplift any winter-weary interior.

"Spring rejuvenation reaches beyond painting walls," Skafidas goes on to say. "Just like the blooming flowers and greenery in your yard, brilliant accent colors can inject energy into every aspect of your home. For example, consider using paint to showcase unique architectural detailing, such as intricate trim and molding, built in bookcases and shelves, as well as door panels."

Skafidas suggests two Dutch Boy hues as ideal decorating accents, the warm gold-infused brown of Weathered Wicker and the rich green of Aubusson Vine. Both colors echo the growth occurring outside.

Explore other Senses

Beyond paint color, take into consideration other design elements found in nature that can also have a significant impact on an interior space, one of which is texture. If your budget allows a few small changes beyond painting, consider removing heavy, winter-warming materials, such as damask or velvet from the room and look to lighter, airier textiles. Heavy draperies can be replaced with sheerer window coverings that allow sunshine to filter through. A dark sofa covered with a slipcover made from linen or lightweight cotton. Even smaller items such as candle holders, pictures frame and lampshades can be interchanged as the new season approaches and then easily and quickly replaced when the weather once again turns colder.

In addition to color and texture, springtime is filled with lively, invigorating aromas. Rather than using an artificial fragrance in your home, bring an actual piece of the season's essence inside by investing in bunches of fresh daffodils, hyacinths and tulips - or cut them from your own flowerbeds. Place vases of them around your house and you'll quickly discover the instantaneous and mood lifting effect fresh flowers can have on any room.

"The transition to spring is always a much-welcomed one, perhaps even more so after this year's harsh winter," Skafidas says. "By using nature's rebirth as your redecorating guide, you can easily turn your interior space into a haven that boosts your spirits and accurately reflects the new season blooming outside your front door."

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Media Contacts

To arrange an interview, or for more information, please contact:


Falls Communications

Public Relations
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Vicki Kressler

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216-472-2392

Laura Pegg

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216-472-2385

Amy O’Donnell

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216-472-2396