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TREKKING AROUND THE WORLD Boy, do I miss my American bathroom

By Alan Knight
It’s the time of year when many people take their vacation. Traveling abroad is a great way to learn about other cultures and have experiences that are incomparable to what you have in the good ole USA. Trekking from one country or continent to another, you experience the most exotic and diverse sights, sounds, smells, food, music, dwellings and yes, bathrooms.  Almost every well-heeled traveler will have one or two classic bathroom stories. 

Courtesy of en.wikipedia.org


Americans, especially those who have not traveled abroad, are often completely unprepared for the adventures they experience overseas. You might be strolling through the streets of Bangkok and encounter a local riding an elephant to the outdoor market, but the real trauma will come when you go to use the bathroom in your hotel room (that is, if you have one in your hotel room). Imagine the look of horror when you open the door and spot a hole in the floor. Yep, that’s the reality and most Americans take for granted the little things that make our lives pleasant. Suddenly, they’re not so little anymore.

WHAT, I HAVE TO SHARE?

Yes, you do. Unless you have an unlimited budget, chances are you’ll be looking to save some money on your adventure. Since you probably don’t plan on spending most of your time in your hotel room, this is generally where you might cut corners.

Be prepared to share. European hoteliers are often a bit perplexed as to why American travelers are so uncomfortable with shared bathrooms because it has been the norm for many years. In many hotels overseas, the toilet and shower will be at the end of the hall. If you get especially lucky, there might be two. Granted, more and more hotels are adding pre-fab bathrooms to individual rooms, but you will dole out a heftier sum for that luxury.

THE EARLY BIRD CATCHES THE WORM AND THE HOT SHOWER 

Courtesy of en.wikipedia.org


Do you relish the thought of those hot beads of water gushing down on you first thing in the morning? Do you take your sweet time in the shower as you luxuriate in the hot, soapy water? Well, you can forget about those days as you trek across many parts of the globe. Hot water is a luxury in most places overseas, even in swankier accommodations. 

In many hotels, hot water is available only once a day and there won’t be much of it. Most likely it will be first thing in the morning and the luxury won’t show up again until the next day. It’s not a shabby idea to ask when the precious hot water is available so you can be the first guest to queue up. Just run out quickly, so no one knows who just used up all the hot water. And don’t drop your towel.

HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO FIT IN THAT?

So you paid the extra expense for a private bathroom. Good for you. When you walk into the room, you might be in for a bit of a surprise. Hint, it’s not good. Some hotels have joined the private bathroom revolution, they are notoriously tiny. Shower curtains optional. Be careful if you drop the teeny, tiny bath soap, you may hit your noggin on the sink or the toilet. On a positive note, there’s nothing like a side-splitting bathroom story to tell your friends when you get home.

BUT HONEY, MY TOWEL IS SCRATCHING ME

This sure isn’t a Fieldcrest towel. No, it is not. The plush, heavyweight, absorbent, ultra-luxurious towels you cherish at home are nowhere to be found at your average hotel overseas. The towel you will be using is most likely thin, waffle-like and totally lacking the ability to retain moisture. It’s not a bad idea to bring your own because the drying off idea has just not caught on overseas. Maybe you can go into the towel business?

WHERE’S THE THRONE? 

Courtesy of en.wikipedia.org


It’s that hole in the ground. See? Depending on the continent you’ve landed on, commodes as you know them may not exist. And you thought everyone in the world used a toilet. Wrong again. Typically called Turkish toilets or squatters, they exist in many places across the globe. They can be porcelain or metal bowls planted firmly in the ground. It may also be a hole, literally, in the middle of the bathroom. There is no seat on these bad boys, so you have to learn to squat and aim. Think of how much stronger your thighs will be by the end of your adventure.

Oh, and one other thing. Good luck finding toilet paper in these bathrooms. There might be a bucket of water, but that‘s about it. You can wash your hands in the sink. Please scrub them.

IS THAT AN AUXILLIARY TOILET?

You happened upon a bathroom with two toilets this time, not just a hole in the ground.  You must be in Europe. The second toilet is actually a bidet and is considered as important to Europeans as the shower or toilet. The jets thoroughly clean your bottom and is considered to be much more sanitary than toilet paper alone.

DO YOU MISS YOUR BATHROOM YET?

You are on your transcontinental flight home and there are two things you long for; your bed and your bathroom. Traveling the globe was an enlightening experience and the exposure to other cultures has enriched your life immeasurably. The food, the sights, sounds, and people will be etched in your mind forever. So will the bathrooms. 

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Now you realize how good you have it. You come home and realize your master bathroom is almost the same size as some of the rooms where you laid your head. You’ve always relished having a luxurious bathroom and made a point of acquiring a solid surface, ultra-luxurious soaking tub to wash away the remnants of your stressful work day. The whole bathing ritual has new meaning now that you have seen the other side. Things don’t get better than this as you drop your luggage on the bedroom floor, turn on the hot water and hop right in. Yes, that was a purchase you will never regret.

This article discusses the various types of bathrooms across the globe and the ultimate differences in contrast to a typical American bathroom. Many Americans have no idea what to expect when they travel abroad or may believe the things considered to be typical in the States, may not even exist in some parts of the world. Now don’t you desire a little more luxury in your master bathroom?

If you learned anything from this article, please make a comment or pass it along.

Would you like to receive a free copy of our ebook – Tub King’s Ultimate Guide to Cast Iron/Porcelain Tubs, Walk-in Tubs & Safety Suite Showers? Fill in the form below and we will send it to you for free or you can buy it on Amazon.com by clicking on this link

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SWEAT IT OUT! THE MANY BENEFITS OF EXERCISE- AND THEY DON’T STINK

By Alan Knight

You don’t have to look too far to find information on the benefits of exercising regularly. In fact, some of them will be discussed right here. But it’s not all about toned abs and firm glutes. How about sweating to boost your brain function? 

Courtesy of commons.wikimedia.org


For years scientists have pondered how exercising can boost your brainpower. Harvard based psychiatrist, John J. Ratey, MD, authored a fascinating investigation into the transformative effects of exercise on the brain. In his book, Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain, he states, “Exercise is the single best thing you can do for your brain in terms of mood, memory and learning.” He continues, “Even 10 minutes of activity changes your brain.” Get inspired to exercise by reading up on how working out can benefit your mental and physical health, and lead to a happier and healthier life overall. Are you ready to work up a sweat?

SAY GOODBYE TO STRESS

Stress can be a real bummer on your body all the way down to the cellular level. Chronic stress leads to headaches, insomnia and heart attacks. There’s also an association between stress and memory loss. Cortisol is released into your body when you’re under stress which interferes with the neurotransmitters that enable brain cells to communicate with each other.  This in turn leads to difficulty with memory retrieval. 

Courtesy of public-domain-image.com


Jumping on the treadmill, taking a vigorous hike or playing a rousing game of tennis will blow off tension by increasing the “happy” chemicals like dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine. It gets even better. According to research at UCSF, physical activity can reduce the effects of cell aging brought on by chronic stress. Let’s get a little scientific for a moment so I can explain. A telomere is a component of DNA that sits atop our chromosomes like a plastic tip on the edge of a shoe lace. Essentially they keep the chromosome ends from fraying. They lose their effectiveness as they get shorter and the cells they protect are no longer able to divide. This leads to inactive cells which eventually die. A dead cell is not a good cell. This leads to aging, cancer, diabetes and early death.

The findings of the UCSF study links exercise with longer telomeres. To make a long study short, they compared stressed-out active people and stressed-out inactive people and guess who had the longer telomeres? Yep, you got it. The active people had longer telomeres even though they were under stress. And longer telomeres are linked to younger-looking and healthier people. (https://www.ucsf.edu/news/2013/09/108886/lifestyle-changes-may-lengthen-telomeres-measure-cell-aging)
EXERCISE IMPROVES LEARNING

It sure does and the kids at Naperville High School (in Illinois) can prove it. A physical education teacher named Phil Lawler got the idea to get the kids moving when he saw a lot of inactivity in the school gym. He decided to insist all the students run one mile a week. He stuck by his guns despite the flack. 

Courtesy of en.wikipedia.org


The program began to evolve and soon he added cardio equipment and heart monitors. Kids were graded on how many times during the week they hit their target heart rate. Over time, the kids’ reading scores doubled and their math scores were up by a factor of 20. Other teachers at Naperville High began to give “brain breaks” during class by allowing a short burst of physical activity. This helped the students to focus longer and even increased their problem solving skills.

Research shows that more complicated activities like playing tennis or taking a dance class provides the biggest brain boost because complicated movement stimulates thinking. “All their brain cells are working,” according to Dr. Ratey, “And when their brain cells work, they pour out neurotransmitters.  They also pour out these brain growth factors which help our brain cells knit together.”

It turns out that working out boosts the brain in adults too. A general rule of thumb; if it’s good for the heart, it’s good for the brain. Lace up your sneakers, hit the gym and improve your memory. I like the sound of that.

EXERCISE HELPS WITH DEPRESSION

There is mounting evidence showing that exercise may be one of the best treatments for mild to moderate depression. According to Dr. Raley, “There are very good placebo control studies comparing antidepressants and exercise, and the effect on mood is the same.” It may be because exercise appears to stimulate growth in neurons in regions of the brain damaged by depression. Don’t worry if you’re not a gym rat. Some form of physical activity for 30 minutes a few times a week, will boost overall mood and put more pep in your step.

NEED A LITTLE MORE SELF-ESTEEM? IT BUILDS CONFIDENCE

Don your sneakers, grab a towel and hit the treadmill for a confidence boost. You don’t have to see a radical change to get a burst of confidence. Simply put, improved physical fitness can boost self-esteem and improve positive self-image.

EXERCISE HELPS WITH ANXIETY

Feeling anxious? The “happy” chemicals that are released during exercise can help people with anxiety disorders calm down. Hop on the treadmill for some high-intensity cardio and watch your anxiety melt away. One vigorous exercise session can help alleviate symptoms for hours and regularly scheduled workouts can significantly reduce them over time.

EXERCISE HELPS YOU SLEEP BETTER

Studies show that exercise can significantly improve the sleep of those with chronic insomnia. Exercise triggers an increase in body temperature. A few hours later when the temperature drops back to normal, it signals the body that it’s time to sleep.

THE FUN PART

You’ve just had a great workout and feel like you’re on top of the world. You feel strong and invincible. This is your new lifestyle and you love it. There is nothing better for your body after exercise than a nice long soak. 

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You deserve it, don’t you think?

In this article, I discussed the many brain-boosting benefits of exercise and why physicians suggest regular physical activity to promote a healthy lifestyle. It is also important to rejuvenate sore muscles after a workout. A cool soak in the tub is just what the doctor ordered.

If you learned anything from this article, please make a comment or pass it along.

Until the next time.

Would you like to receive a free copy of our ebook – Tub King’s Ultimate Guide to Cast Iron/Porcelain Tubs, Walk-in Tubs & Safety Suite Showers? Fill in the form below and we will send it to you for free or you can buy it on Amazon.com by clicking on this link

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At TubKing.com

Have a question? Feel free to contact me at the number or email listed at the end of this article and I will personally get back to you. It’s been my pleasure sharing this information with you.

Visit TubKing.com for current specials 



Alan Knight is the owner of Tub King, Inc., and SeniorBathtub.com  in Jacksonville,  Florida. He has many years of experience in the antique and senior bathtub industries. His companies not only provide superior products, the company is also multiple time award winner, receiving the “Best of Jacksonville Chamber Award” four years running. If you would like to contact him, call (800) 409-3375 or (800) 843-4231; or email them at alan@tubking.com.

HOW YOU CAN TURN BUILDING YOUR DECK INTO A FUN PROJECT

By Alan Knight
Courtesy of  plus.google.com


We just finished building our new home in the woods, and one of the things I added was a deck.   In my personal opinion, it was the best investment of all of the home components.  Our property, which my wife and I purchased a year ago, was a hillside plot.  With a 30 degree grade, building the house was a challenge, but it did lend itself to a spectacular view of the valley and ridges.  Plus the tall hardwood trees, some over a hundred foot high, are almost close enough to touch.  We knew right away that adding a deck was a necessity. 
Today, with the home completed, our favorite spot is the back deck.  It stands 16 feet off the ground and attaches to the back of the house.  We had part of it screened to keep out annoying insects and left a separate portion for grilling.  We built the deck out of pressure-treated pine which resists rot and repels pests. 
There some other choices for consideration.  IPE (pronounced ee-pay) is an almost magical South American hardwood.  The USDA Forest Service Products Lab gives Ipe top marks for bug and rot resistance, and the wood is so hard, it’s nearly as difficult to burn as concrete.  It is dense and very heavy, which makes it a wonderful wood to use with stone and slate accents. 
Courtesy of  albierock.blogspot.com

Another choice of wood would be Western Red Cedar.  This product is reddish brown and ages in silvery gray.  The soft wood splinters easily, but holds up well in rain, sun, heat, and cold.  To add beauty and durability to your cedar deck, use a penetrating stain.

Redwood, like cedar, is a soft lumber that ages to a pleasing gray.  Prolonged moisture will cause the wood to blacken.  A redwood deck will resist rot, but will look more attractive if you use a sealer.
Mahogany is a tight-grained tropical hardwood that resists pests and rot.  Treat with marine oil and it looks like teak.  Or, if you wish, let your mahogany deck age to a silvery hue.  You can choose from several varieties. 
There are various styles and types of decks.  Once you start your research you’ll find that not all decks look the same.  There are:

          Wraparounds.  These typically are built around some prized object, like a favorite tree.
        Freestanding.  This one is built separately from the house, usually in the

Courtesy of  blog.protectpainters.com

back yard with steps leading up to the platform.  It can come with a cover or a pergola.  Keep in mind, if the floor of the deck is more than 30 inches high, it will require a railing.

        Attached-to-House.  This is the best choice, if possible, because it adds more support to the deck since it is anchored to the house.
        Hillside.  This one, as in our case, is required if the ground is not level.  

However, the steeper the lot, the better the view.  Since our deck was so high off the ground, it required a knee wall, made of two by fours and lattice to complete the screened-in portion.  This is a safety feature for small children.
I’m not going into the complete, detailed construction process in this blog.  For that, simply go on-line and look up “building your own deck.”
One of the things I would like to mention is choosing your “purpose” in building a deck.  Don’t waste time and money on a building project unless you have a need for it.  Now we all know that building a deck is a luxury, not a necessity.  You can live without it, if you have to.  But choosing the WHY before starting construction is vital.  Why do you feel the need for a deck?  Now in our case, our property was in the middle of the woods and on a five acre hillside parcel.  It made sense aesthetically.  But what is your reason?
Courtesy of  www.travelbutlers.com

Maybe you like to entertain, especially “outside.”  Building a large deck with plenty of seating for company can be a great treat.  In this case, consider adding something for shade, either a top or pergola.  You might also want to add the plumbing and fixture for an outdoor sink and electrical for a frig and maybe a flat screen for sports events.  Our next door neighbor in Florida, several years ago, was a big FSU fan, and really a big football fan in general.  During football season, they made good use of their deck.  Saturday night was reserved for “fan night” with plenty of beer and a couple of flat-screens mounted to the walls.  With plenty of family and friends in attendance it always made for a great time.

TubKing Double Slipper tub.

If it is just for you and your significant other, it might be used for quiet, relaxing, reading a book, sunning, or even taking an outdoor bath in a claw foot tub. The double slipper tub allows two people to bathe together. You can even install a walk-in tub with its spa like features of hydro-jet, air-jet and heat. It will provide a lifelong benefits of relaxing after a long day.

Decks also make the perfect accent for a swimming pool.  Wood decking with its delicious smell and feel is much preferred over concrete and cool-decking.
Whatever your reason, building a wood deck can be very rewarding.  It gives your home more value, and you can count on years of personal enjoyment.  Go online a see if you might be able to build it yourself.  If not, find a local contractor who specializes in decks and porches.  You won’t be sorry.

Get it free here! or  buy it at amazon.com
This article explains how you can turn an outdoor deck project into fun project that can include entertainment elements (like a TV and refrigerator) and health benefits by adding a claw-foot or Walk-in tub. Building a deck does not have to be an arduous job, it can be great fun when approached right.
Until the next time…

Would you like to receive a free copy of our latest ebook – Tub King’s Ultimate Guide to Cast Iron/Porcelain Tubs, Walk-in Tubs & Safety Suite Showers? Fill in the form below and we will send it to you for FREE or you can buy it on Amazon.com by clicking on this link
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Have a question? Feel free to contact me at the number or email listed at the end of this article and I will personally get back to you. It’s been my pleasure sharing this information with you.

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Alan Knight is  the owner of Tub King, Inc., and SeniorBathtub.com  in Jacksonville,  Florida. He has many years of experience in the antique and senior bathtub industries. His companies not only provide superior products, the company is also multiple time award winner, receiving the “Best of Jacksonville Chamber Award” four years running. If you would like to contact him, call (800) 409-3375 or (800) 843-4231; or email them at alan@tubking.com.


THE PERFECT POWER SHOWER

By Alan Knight
Courtesy of flickr.com
Imagine you wake up one chilly March morning and you smell the coffee that started brewing at 6:00 AM. You’re wrapped in your silky, feathery comforter and wish someone would bring the coffee to you. The only thing keeping you going is knowing you can jump into your steamy shower with the warm tendrils of water surrounding your sleepy body. You reluctantly shed the comforter and stroll towards the shower. As you turn on the HOT faucet, you begin to realize that something is amiss. Please say it isn’t so. Instead of that steam you long for emanating from the shower, there is only cold, piercing water gushing from the showerhead. What do you do? 

With all the gusto you can muster, you flick your fingertips into the chilly water and your heart sinks. It’s just too cold, but you know what you have to do. You remember that you’ve done this before during your first swim of the summer. You can do it. You jump right in, do a little dance to warm up, and after the first few shocking moments, your body seems to acclimate. You hurriedly lather up, rinse off and jump out. Thank goodness that’s over.
Much to your surprise, you heart is pumping like the time your neighbor’s dog got loose. You definitely feel invigorated. There is a reason for that feeling and despite the initial discomfort, there are many healthful benefits to taking cold showers.

COLD SHOWERS BURN FAT 

Courtesy of flickr.com
Believe it or not, it’s true. There are two kinds of fat in your body; brown fat (good- think shoulders) and white fat (bad-think belly). Brown fat helps to burn calories and push out the white fat. Its function is to generate heat to keep you warm. Taking a cold shower activates the brown fat resulting in calorie burn to warm the body.
“The Scandinavian researchers found that exposure to chilly temperatures caused a 15-fold increase in the metabolic rate of brown fat in their healthy adult volunteers. They figure that if a way could be found to activate the typical person’s stores of brown fat, it would burn off at least 9 pounds of regular (white) fat a year.” (http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=102964807)

COLD SHOWERS INCREASE ALERTNESS

Who doesn’t feel a little groggy first thing in the morning? Adding a cold shower to your morning routine will put a little pep in your step. Your body’s response to the shock of the cold water is to breathe deeply to keep you warm. This increases the overall oxygen intake which is healthy in itself. The heart rate increases and a rush of blood flows through your veins, giving you a major energy boost.

COLD SHOWERS KEEP YOUR HAIR AND SKIN RADIANT

Hot water strips your hair and skin of the natural oils. Cold water tightens your cuticles and pores, thereby preventing them from becoming clogged by allowing dirt to penetrate. You’ll have shinier hair and more radiant skin in no time.

COLD SHOWERS HELP BOOST IMMUNITY AND CIRCULATION 

Courtesy of en.wikipedia.org


Cold showers increase your metabolic rate, which in turn, activates your immune system. During this process, virus-fighting white blood cells are released that help to prevent and fight illness. It’s like natural medicine without the harmful effects of prescription drugs.

COLD SHOWERS CAN FIGHT DEPRESSION
Cold showers can relieve symptoms of depression. “Due to the high density of cold receptors in the skin, a cold shower can be expected to send a burst of electrical impulses from peripheral nerve endings to the brain, which could result in an anti-depressive effect.” (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17993252) After exposure to cold water, there is also an increase in glutathione, which is an antioxidant that keeps all the other antioxidants working in top form. This 2008 study claims that cold water therapy produces an analgesic effect which can boost your mood and lessen your stress levels, empowering you to handle anything that comes your way.
COLD SHOWERS DRAIN YOUR LYMPHATIC SYSTEM
Actually, this works best with hot and cold water showers. The lymphatic system helps to carry waste from your cells, helping to defend your body from infection. Cold water aids in contracting the lymph vessels, while hot water relaxes the vessels. As the lymph vessels contract and dilate they create a pumping motion and push fluid through that may have stagnated in the system resulting in a healthier and stronger you.
COLD SHOWERS HELP FATIGUED MUSCLES AFTER RIGOROUS EXERCISE
Athletes take ice baths after intense training. Ice baths reduce muscle pain and prevent muscles from the soreness that results days after training. Cold water showers don’t have the exact same effect as ice baths, but they do help in relieving muscle pain.
Cold water constricts blood vessels, aids in flushing waste products and reduces swelling resulting in a speedy recovery from an intense workout.
Courtesy of en.wikipedia.org
DON’T JUMP IN ALL AT ONCE 
If you are a cold shower virgin, there’s no need to jump in all at once. Just the thought of it will make you shiver. Try this experiment over a 30-day period and alternate the amount of time you run the cold water.
Start with your normal hot shower and end it with a few minutes under cool water. Once you feel comfortable with that and are feeling the effects that the cooler water provides, try finishing your shower with a few minutes under the coldest water you can stand. You will notice how much better you feel immediately. Do this for one week.
Now that you’re comfortable with finishing your shower with cold water, you’ll probably have a little more courage to alternate between hot and cold water. Try doing 1-2 minutes with hot water and 30-60 seconds with cold. This is really going to get your blood flowing. As you practice, try to increase the amount of time you spend with the cold water. You will slowly work yourself up to more cold time and less hot time. Try this for a good two to two and a half weeks before you take the big plunge.
You have started to feel the benefits the invigorating cold water has on your health and there is no reason to stop now. Who knows, it may even become an addiction. Week four is going to be your best week. You psych yourself up and turn on the cold water knowing how great you’ll feel afterwards. Voila, you did it and you announce to the world about the health benefits of taking cold showers. Toot your horn on Twitter and Instagram to gain more of a following, because you are invincible.
With all your new found energy and vitality, you’ll wonder if this experience can get any better. Your bathroom has become your place of empowerment and you want a better shower. Maybe a built-in shower is a possibility? How about a shower you can walk right into, with a built in chair and a removable shower head where you can direct the water where you want? The possibilities are endless. What a great, life-changing decision you have made. 
This article extols the many health benefits of taking cold showers. I’ve only named a few. Adding to that, the upgrade to a modern shower like the new safety suite shower, with all the amenities and you have the perfect power shower.

Until the next time…
Would you like to receive a free copy of our ebook – Tub King’s Ultimate Guide to Cast Iron/Porcelain Tubs, Walk-in Tubs & Safety Suite Showers? Fill in the form below and we will send it to you for free or you can buy it on Amazon.com by clicking on this link

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At TubKing.com
Have a question? Feel free to contact me at the number or email listed at the end of this article and I will personally get back to you. It’s been my pleasure sharing this information with you.

Visit TubKing.com for current specials 


Alan Knight is  the owner of Tub King, Inc., and SeniorBathtub.com  in Jacksonville,  Florida. He has many years of experience in the antique and senior bathtub industries. His companies not only provide superior products, the company is also multiple time award winner, receiving the “Best of Jacksonville Chamber Award” four years running. If you would like to contact him, call (800) 409-3375 or (800) 843-4231; or email them at alan@tubking.com.




HOW TO DECORATE YOUR HOUSE – ROOM BY ROOM

By Alan Knight

Courtesy of www.flickr.com

You can find a lot of advice out there about home decorating.  Usually they will focus on a certain room or even a part of the room, but who has the time to find the whole package.  Extensive reading is a luxury few have.  Trying to piece together information on decorating the entire house is daunting.  So, why not look at all the parts in one complete article.  We will take it one room at a time.
The ENTRY way of your home may seem to be an insignificant area on which to focus.  But this is not the case.  This tiny area provides the visitor with their first impression of your house.  If a visitor comes through the front door and continues on to the next room without stopping to admire something special you have failed.  Your guest needs to be greeted with a positive and welcome atmosphere from the very first moment they enter.  This can be done in a number of ways.  One of the most popular ways is to add a side table, and one that is unusual.  About thirty years ago, we moved into an upscale neighborhood in Houston, Texas.  The neighbor just behind us was very cordial and offered assistance with the move-in.  On the second day, she had noticed that we had a foyer that was causing some decorator problems.  We had nothing to really complete it.  So, she went to an antique shop, found a long, tall and narrow oriental table and brought it over.  It was beautiful.  Made of mahogany with delicate imprints and sculptured legs, it seemed to be absolutely perfect.  I was ready to pay her any amount of money to keep it, but she insisted on giving it to us as a house-warming gift.  Tables like this one can perfectly accessorize an entry area.  Also consider purchasing some art or an antique mirror to go over the table and then add décor on top of it.  If your guest does not stop at your foyer to admire your work, you need to rethink the way it is decorated.
Courtesy of  www.flickr.com

The living room or family roomcomes in all shapes and sizes.  They are multi-purpose rooms and are one of the most used spaces in the home.  This is a great place to have fun with color, pattern, and accessories.   By the way, before you start buying decorator items measure your room, shelves, windows, and other elements BEFORE going shopping.  Items in a store will always seem smaller because the store is so big.  You will be sad if you get your items home and they are the wrong scale or too small or large for a wall or table.  In most homes the family room also serves as an entertainment center.  Instead of displaying a rather utilitarian flat screen TV or stereo system in the open, why not choose an antique armoire or manor cabinet where entertainment centers can be concealed when not in use.  Then decorate the areas around that piece of furniture.  Since they are typically tall, choosing tall plants on either side is an option.  Also make the seating look warm and comfortable.  Break up the usual couch and chair with some other pieces, like a chase or deep lounging furniture.  They come in all shapes and sizes.  Also end tables for reading and floor lamps are a good choice.  The key is to create a theme and find interesting pieces, not the usual fare.   If the family room is more of an entertainment room, choose wall decorations that are more fun than artistic.  I remember one home that decorated the family room New Orleans style.  There was jazz artwork on the walls, rote iron railings in key places and even a cool player piano.  A massive antique armoire housing the entertainment pieces and even an antique popcorn machine really defined it.
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Because kitchens are designed 98% around function, it can be hard to know where to put the pretty things.  Kitchen decor should reflect what’s happening in the kitchen.  Start with selecting pretty jars, canisters, baskets, and greenery, even silk plants or plastic fruits or veggies can’t hurt.  For counter placements, start with the corners.  If you have the height, put the taller pieces in the corner and layer out in front of them.  The canisters that hold actual food can be placed more in the middle or near the stove top.  Again, less is more in the kitchen.  Keep those counters free of clutter and keep them as clean as possible so you have more room to cook and less places to collect dust and germs.  Above cabinets, keep it free of clutter.  Again, less is more.  Some people love to pack them full from corner to corner.
Courtesy of  www.flickr.com

Bedroom colors are important.  The wise will prefer to keep the tones and patterns subdued… to create a relaxing and restful place to retreat to.  Neutral colors with accents of pattern and lots of texture can create this comforting look.  If you have a head or footboard that is a great statement piece, let them speak for themselves.  Choose simple accessories that complement the focal point-furniture.  Floating nightstands are a good way to simplify.  Also, don’t be afraid of wallpaper.  The wallpaper of today is not your grandma’s wallpaper.  Adding a pattern to the wall behind your bed, whether with paper or a stencil, creates a beautiful finished look.  Gorgeous fabrics in a bedroom is what makes them feel lush and comforting.  Most people choose to hang decor above their headboard, which is totally fine, but don’t be afraid to be different and hang pieces over your night stands instead.  Another thing, you don’t have to buy “bedroom sets” (or living room sets) because when you do, you’re allowing some salesman or manufacturer to decorate your home.  Instead, choose furniture pieces that complement each other, but don’t necessarily match each other.  Paint your side tables a fun color and then repeat that color throughout the room.  Have your headboard be a bright color and then have neutral side tables.  The ideas are endless, and I promise if you break away from the “bedroom set” idea, you’ll have a more designer look in no time.
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The bathroom is similar to the kitchen in the fact that they mostly exist for functional purposes. That doesn’t mean you can’t add a little decor to them.  For example, for the vanity add beautiful canisters or baskets that hold the everyday items like q-tips and towels.  Tall and thin vases with greenery and flowers bring the outdoors in and soften up the hard lines of a bathroom.  One way to really add a focal point to a bathroom is the addition of a clawfoot or pedestal porcelain bathtub.  There are a few specialized companies (Tub King, Inc. for example) that have brought back the old antique style with some more modern improvements.  The slipper tub, for example, made of thick, rich porcelain comes in various sizes to fit any bath and has the sexy lines of a slipper.  Instead of placing it in a corner, as with traditional bathtubs, you redesign the bathroom to have it in the center as a key focal point.  With draperies and towel to add color to this beautiful fixture, you can really make the bathroom come alive.
One last thing, unless architectural elements call for something different (mantels, wainscot, etc.) hang your art with the center of the piece just above eye level.  A good standard is about 5 foot 5 inches.  If you look around, most people hang their frames and mirrors way higher than this… bring them down where you can actually see them.
When you examine your home room by room, does it speak to you?  Is there a consistent pattern that shows someone took time and energy to make it special?  There is a lot you can do, even on a budget.
In this article I have provided sound advice on how to decorate your house room by room, including the kitchen and bathrooms. This advice includes design styles like contemporary verses antique and architectural elements like a claw-foot tub verses a modern pedestal bathtub.  
If you would like to see examples of porcelain, claw-foot, pedestal and contemporary bathtubs, visit our website at www.tubking.com. You will not be disappointed. We hope you visit soon.

Thanks again for visiting with us.  Until next time.

Would you like to receive a free copy of our eBook – Tub King’s Ultimate Guide to Cast Iron/Porcelain Tubs, Walk-in Tubs & Safety Suite Showers? Fill in the form below and we will send it to you for free, or you can buy it on Amazon.com by clicking on this link

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At TubKing.com


Have a question? Feel free to contact me at the number or email listed at the end of this article and I will personally get back to you. It has been my pleasure sharing this information with you.

Visit TubKing.com today

Alan Knight are the owners of Tub King, Inc., and SeniorBathtub.com  in Jacksonville,  Florida. He has many years of experience in the antique and senior bathtub industries. His companies not only provide superior products, the company is also multiple time award winner, receiving the “Best of Jacksonville Chamber Award” four years running. If you would like to contact him, call (800) 409-3375 or (800) 843-4231; or email them at alan@tubking.com.

Related articles

SOLID SURFACE BATHTUBS- THE CENTERPIECE OF YOUR MASTER BATH

By Alan Knight

In the past, the bathroom was mostly considered to be a utilitarian space where you take care of your daily ablutions and you’re done. But alas, these times are changing. Your home is your refuge and the trend is to upgrade your refuge to provide the epitome of comfort and luxury. 

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Is there anything more luxurious and relaxing than a spa-like master bathroom? I don’t think so. There is nothing like ending a long, stressful day with a self-indulgent, healing soak in your bathtub to wash away your daily woes.

THE CENTERPIECE

The centerpiece of modern bathroom design has become the freestanding bathtub. These bathtubs have become works of art. The simple and elegant design dictates the mood of the room. It says, this room is my spa.
As a consumer, you know what you want and quality and endurance are essential. If you are going to upgrade your master bathroom and create a spa-like atmosphere, you want your bathtub centerpiece to be of the highest quality and most sleek design.

They are finally here.

SOLID SURFACE BATHTUBS AT TUB KING

After countless requests for newer, more contemporary bathtubs, we are proud to introduce our new line of Solid Surface Bathtubs. It is the essential element in the creation of a modern master bathroom.

These tubs are made of a material called solid surface, a man-made stone also known by its brand name, Corian. Once dubbed a “space age” material, it is a non-porous, low maintenance material and virtually scratch-resistant. It is mainly used for sinks and countertops.

 By using this solid surface material, shapes and designs can be achieved that are only possible by using acrylics and plastics. The inferior materials do not retain heat and tend to bow and flex and eventually crack over time. These solid surface tubs are easy to clean and will retain their new look for years to come. They can provide the same, warm bathing experience as their cast iron ancestors while giving your master bathroom the spa-like atmosphere you are seeking.

ONLY THE HIGHEST QUALITY AT TUB KING

We are proud of the work we do here at Tub King and only align ourselves with the best products and designers. We are happy to align ourselves with Clarke Architectural, an innovator in contemporary bathroom fixture design. Using advanced technologies, their products are not only timeless and elegant, but designed to last a lifetime. Whether it is a Tub King Solid Surface Tub or a Clark Architectural brand tub, you know you are purchasing the highest quality tub on the market today.

Clarke Architectural products are made exclusively of OMOXO™ solid surface compound. This proprietary formulation is comprised of a high concentration of Lucite® liquid acrylic resin as a bonding agent, plus polymerized granules to develop the beautiful color and distinctive finish utilized throughout our entire product line. Although more expensive to manufacture, we strongly believe in using only premium grade materials to achieve a natural beauty that can stand up to the rigors of daily use without compromise. Clarke Architectural solid surface products are manufactured exclusively in the United States. Each piece is hand detailed to a matte or satin finish. Go beyond simple expectations of traditional bath products, and choose to showcase a functional piece of art that is both timeless in design and built for life.”

THE CREATIONS

THE 70” ELSYIUM 

There are 18 stunning styles to choose from and all will deliver that warm and blissful bathing experience you desire.


Let’s take a look at some of the works of art that can be yours.

THE 70” ELSYIUM 



The Elsyium solid surface bathtub will transform your master bath into a modern day paradise. The solid surface construction allows you to take a lingering, soothing, warm bath that will bring you the relaxation and peace you desire.

THE 66” EDEN

THE 66” EDEN 


This stunner, with its sleek, oval silhouette will make you and your contemporary master bathroom the envy of the neighborhood. Though it can be positioned anywhere in the space, this work of art belongs where it will get the most attention- right in the middle of the room. To make more impact, this stylish tub also comes in black.

THE 71” IRIDEON

THE 71” IRIDEON


The striking structure of the Irideon offers a refreshing, modern look.  The well-designed silhouette and curvature of the Irideon form a unique shape that is stunning at any angle. The deep, freestanding tub allows for complete immersion, creating the perfect space for relaxation.


THE 72” LOTUS

THE 72” LOTUS

Sensual to the feel and striking in appearance, the Lotus reflects a sense of elegance designed to stand on its own as the main element of any bathroom. The velvety finish and sophisticated profile of the Lotus create a solid surface bath that is both practical and beautiful. The well-designed silhouette and curvature of the Lotus forms a unique shape that is stunning at any angle.


THE 70” LAVASCA

THE 70” LAVASCA



The sleek and stylish Lavasca bathtub is both functional and elegant. The freestanding soaker combines luxury with practicality enhancing the décor in any bathroom. Designed by Matteo Thun and Rapsel of Italy, the Lavasca series offers a modern sculptural form that can be positioned anywhere in the room.

THE 68” DUNE DIMENSIONAL


THE 68” DUNE DIMENSIONAL

Sensuous and serene, the award winning Dune Dimensional features an elegant silhouette wrapped in free flowing curves. Inspired by the by the Siwa Oasis in the Libyan Desert of Egypt, the Dune Dimensional was designed by Paris-born interior designer, Caroline Beaupère.  The lightly textured ripples on the exterior of the tub reflect the tranquil feel of the oasis, creating the perfect place for relaxation. This freestanding bath is stunning at any perspective.


These are just a few of the works of art offered at Tub King. We are so incredibly proud to be able to offer you these stunning bathtubs at incredible prices. These solid surface bathtubs with their artistic silhouettes, will transform any master bathroom into a seductive and elegant paradise.

For more information and to see all 18 of our stunning solid surface bathtubs (though we prefer to call them works of art), visit our website at www.tubking.com. You will not be disappointed.

Thank you for reading our “showcase” blog today. We can’t contain our excitement about our solid surface tubs and want all of our readers to share the joy. 

Thanks again for visiting with us.  Until next time. 

Would you like to receive a free copy of our ebook – Tub King’s Ultimate Guide to Cast Iron/Porcelain Tubs, Walk-in Tubs & Safety Suite Showers? Fill in the form below and we will send it to you for free or you can buy it on Amazon.com by clicking on this link
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Have a question? Feel free to contact me at the number or email listed at the end of this article and I will personally get back to you. It’s been my pleasure sharing this information with you.

Visit TubKing.com for current specials
Alan Knight are the owners of Tub King, Inc., and SeniorBathtub.com  in Jacksonville,  Florida. He has many years of experience in the antique and senior bathtub industries. His companies not only provide superior products, the company is also multiple time award winner, receiving the “Best of Jacksonville Chamber Award” four years running. If you would like to contact him, call (800) 409-3375 or (800) 843-4231; or email them at alan@tubking.com.


Related articles

INTERESTING TRIVIA ABOUT BATHTUBS – YOU MIGHT WANT TO HEAR

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