Home improvement

Is an Induction Cooktop for You?

While the United States is generally a trail blazer when it comes to cutting edge technology, it has yet to catch on to the newest kitchen craze: induction cooking. International markets have seen induction cookware and appliances take off on a global scale, but American homeowners looking to stay current will have to seek out this latest development in kitchen technology. While the selection remains slim, Americans can find induction cooking technology within their borders, so you may want to figure out if induction cooking is for you.

induction2What is induction cooking? The superior heat that it creates owes itself to the fact that induction burners use an electromagnetic current beneath its surface to cook food. Gas and electric stovetops create hear by using burners that create gas-powered flames or heating up coils until they’re red hot. Induction cooking utilizes the way that a pot’s metal resists an electromagnetic current nearby and creates heat in the process.

In other words, induction cooktops heat up metal pots directly as opposed to the cooking surface that they sit upon. If you were to put your hand on the surface of the cooktop, you wouldn’t burn it (though touching the hot pot would still damage your skin).

This new technology has a fair amount of advantages. While induction cooktops don’t use environmentally unfriendly and inefficient natural gas methods to cook food, they are able to adjusted with as much accuracy as a gas-powered stove. Electric stoves, which are most efficient that gas powered stoves, have never been able to replicate their accuracy. Induction Cooktops are also more efficient than both alternative methods, transferring 90% of the energy used directly into the heat that cooks your dinner. That means lower power bills and a reduced carbon footprint for anyone interested in converting to the induction cooktop.

Amazingly, induction cooktops can also be made to be extremely portable. They can shrink down to the size and weight of a bathroom scale is need be, and the user of the stove can touch it at any time during the cooking process because it doesn’t heat up. Portable stovetops can be bought for as little as $100, though extremely fancy models with touch screens and such can cost up to $1000.

induction3After hearing all these positive attributes, you may be waiting for the catch. Induction cooktops do have some drawbacks; for example, they’ll only work if you’re using ferrous metal pots and pans. That means if you have any cookware that’s not cast iron or stainless steel, you’re out of luck. Aluminum, copper and pyrex pots are out, so if you’ve already invested a whole lot of money into cookware that can’t be used for induction cooking, it might just not make sense for you financially to switch over.

That said, the cookware catch is about the only issue with the new technology. Otherwise it’s an amazing opportunity for home owners to make their kitchens safer and more energy efficient without sacrificing copious amounts of money or cooking accuracy on the stove.

Prep Your Kitchen Appliances for Synthetic Meat

After months of pressure, you finally caved. The media, your friends, the terrifying documentaries, even the little guys themselves – they’ve all been trying to convince you to stop eating meat but you’ve held fast… until recently.

Now, you’re eating “tofurkey” and vegan cheese, and you’re wondering how long until you die. Counting the days, even. Peanut butter only has so much protein, and your mouth is nearly spackled shut. You’ve eaten more rice and beans than a Mexican cowboy, and coconut milk sucks. What EVER will you do?

Well, lucky for you, we live in the future – What A Time, amiright?! –

A company by the name of Memphis Meats has your answer, and they would love to cram it down your throat. The first ever synthetic-by-means-of-stem-cell meat will soon be in affluent, predominately white neighborhood grocery stores near you!

That’s right. According to a press release by Memphis Meats in February of this year:

“Memphis Meats is already growing real meat in small quantities using cells from cows, pigs, and chickens. The company’s first products—hot dogs, sausages, burgers, and meatballs—will be developed using recipes perfected over a half century by award-winning chefs. The founders expect to have products to market in less than five years. …  While generating one calorie from beef requires 23 calories in feed, Memphis Meats plans to produce a calorie of meat from just three calories in inputs. The company’s products will be free of antibiotics, fecal matter, pathogens, and other contaminants found in conventional meat.”

Executive director of The Good Food Institute, Bruce Friedrich is hopeful: “Cultured meat is sustainable, creates far fewer greenhouse gases than conventional meat, is safer, and doesn’t harm animals. For people who want to eat meat, cultured meat is the future.”

memphis meatsBut believe it or not, there are plenty of naysayers, with their concerns ranging from “$5 meatballs?!” to one reader comment on TheInertia.com’s article on the matter: “synthetic meat is still wrong. Only a barbaric monster would want to eat simulated murder food”, but another reader sums it up quite well: “As is tradition with all new tech products. The more market share this technology gets, the more the prices will fall. Simply put, eating $5 meatballs now will ensure that everybody has access to cheap, guilt-free meat in the future.” As far as the “simulated murder food” argument, though, – at least it’s not real murder food, right?

If you had any doubts, does it help that it’s backed by a cardiologist? Doctor M.D. and Memphis Meats CEO, Uma Valeti is confident she’s about to revolutionize our culinary culture. In recent years the rise in vegetarianism and veganism has been highly visible via Prius bumpers and “foodie” photo and meme based social media accounts; there’s even a stigma. But with Memphis Meats, you’re technically still eating animals, and you still didn’t have to do any of the elbow work, but really, nobody else did either! Purely guilt-free delicious goodness, grown in a scientifically sterile lab, packaged and delivered to open-minded retailers near your hungry face, and not a single living organism was injured or ripped away from its family. Think of all the Peta videos you’ll be erasing. Think of all the characters in Animal Farm who will never know what it means to “wear pants”.

Don’t you feel better already? Maybe one day soon you’ll turn on the television and an aging Guy Fieri will be preparing synthetic bacon-wrapped synthetic steak taco waffles.

If you’d like to know more, google Memphis Meats and click on the first, like, 3 websites that show up.

After months of pressure, you finally caved. The media, your friends, the terrifying documentaries, even the little guys themselves – they’ve all been trying to convince you to stop eating meat but you’ve held fast… until recently.

Now, you’re eating “tofurkey” and vegan cheese, and you’re wondering how long until you die. Counting the days, even. Peanut butter only has so much protein, and your mouth is nearly spackled shut. You’ve eaten more rice and beans than a Mexican cowboy, and coconut milk sucks. What EVER will you do?

Well, lucky for you, we live in the future – What A Time, amiright?! –

A company by the name of Memphis Meats has your answer, and they would love to cram it down your throat. The first ever synthetic-by-means-of-stem-cell meat will soon be in affluent, predominately white neighborhood grocery stores near you!

That’s right. According to a press release by Memphis Meats in February of this year:

lab grown meat“Memphis Meats is already growing real meat in small quantities using cells from cows, pigs, and chickens. The company’s first products—hot dogs, sausages, burgers, and meatballs—will be developed using recipes perfected over a half century by award-winning chefs. The founders expect to have products to market in less than five years. …  While generating one calorie from beef requires 23 calories in feed, Memphis Meats plans to produce a calorie of meat from just three calories in inputs. The company’s products will be free of antibiotics, fecal matter, pathogens, and other contaminants found in conventional meat.”

Executive director of The Good Food Institute, Bruce Friedrich is hopeful: “Cultured meat is sustainable, creates far fewer greenhouse gases than conventional meat, is safer, and doesn’t harm animals. For people who want to eat meat, cultured meat is the future.”

But believe it or not, there are plenty of naysayers, with their concerns ranging from “$5 meatballs?!” to one reader comment on TheInertia.com’s article on the matter: “synthetic meat is still wrong. Only a barbaric monster would want to eat simulated murder food”, but another reader sums it up quite well: “As is tradition with all new tech products. The more market share this technology gets, the more the prices will fall. Simply put, eating $5 meatballs now will ensure that everybody has access to cheap, guilt-free meat in the future.” As far as the “simulated murder food” argument, though, – at least it’s not real murder food, right?

If you had any doubts, does it help that it’s backed by a cardiologist? Doctor M.D. and Memphis Meats CEO, Uma Valeti is confident she’s about to revolutionize our culinary culture. In recent years the rise in vegetarianism and veganism has been highly visible via Prius bumpers and “foodie” photo and meme based social media accounts; there’s even a stigma. But with Memphis Meats, you’re technically still eating animals, and you still didn’t have to do any of the elbow work, but really, nobody else did either! Purely guilt-free delicious goodness, grown in a scientifically sterile lab, packaged and delivered to open-minded retailers near your hungry face, and not a single living organism was injured or ripped away from its family. Think of all the Peta videos you’ll be erasing. Think of all the characters in Animal Farm who will never know what it means to “wear pants”.

Don’t you feel better already?

If you’d like to know more, google Memphis Meats and click on the first, like, 3 websites that show up.

Dual Batteries for Appliance Perfection

If you’ve ever wished you could use a standard appliance in the comfort of your car or whatever home its hauling, you’ve secretly been wishing that you had a basic dual battery system installed into your vehicle.

Keep in mind that dual batteries are meant to enable the use of appliances made to function off of 12 volts; you’ll have to swap out any standard 120 volt tools you have for ones that are made for in-car, camping use.

rv fridgeMoving forward, let’s talk about what dual battery systems are all about. A dual battery system implies that your car has two distinct battery systems, both of which are receiving their power from the engine. The primary system contains the starting (cranking) battery and the alternator, which provides battery recharging capabilities. The primary system is what’s responsible for getting your car started before the engine heats up enough to handle powering your car on its own. The primary system also includes other electronics required to keep your car operational, from dashboard lights to power locks.

This primary system is responsible for powering other more fun things too, like GPS navigation systems, phone chargers, interior lighting and in-car entertainment systems; basically anything that can only run when the engine is running and the starting battery is functioning.

The secondary or auxiliary battery’s function is to power things that most cars don’t come with but what campers and mobile home owners appreciate being able to use. That means stuff like fridges and freezers, camp lighting, and auxiliary power sockets for plugging in radios, computers, invertors and water boilers.

When camping, you’re only going to be using the auxiliary battery, with no way of draining the starting battery, simply by keeping the keys out of the ignition.

The best kinds of batteries to use as an auxiliary power source are called “Deep Cycle” batteries, as they can handle constant discharge and recharge of power better than your standard engine cranking battery. The only issue is that deep cycle batteries take longer to recharge and don’t quite have the same oomf as more standard batteries. Treat whichever battery you choose as per the manufacturer’s recommendations and keep in mind that they can release explosive gases if placed too close to extreme heat sources. They also need to be ventilated.

dual aux vehicle mountFuses are also a necessary part of maintaining proper battery safety. Automotive electrical systems by nature carry larger voltages and with much greater current than most people assume. Electric and automotive cables are all too likely to wear through protective outer casings, and the wear and tear of automotive life opens up all kinds of doors to short circuiting. A battery short circuit is especially dangerous when it’s in a combustion engine, so you don’t want to skimp on precautions.

Fuses are deliberate weak points in a circuit that will blow and break circuits before major electrical mayhem occurs. Install appropriately sized, unused fuses into your system to avoid what can be catastrophic electrical fires and malfunctions in your mobile home. Circuit breakers can also carry the same function.

GE Offers IFTTT Across Entire Product Line

On Thursday, General Electric added three more IFTTT channels to its repertoire, releasing the statement that it is now officially the only appliance maker in the world to support the connected-home service across its entire product line. That means dishwashers, clothes washers and dryers, cooking appliances, and water heaters can all function in the same IoT system.

iftttIFTTT stands for “If this, then that,” a phrase that signifies the method of automating tasks based on particular conditions. Users are then able to create simple scripts of circumstances, called “recipes,” which determine which circumstances will yield some kind of functioning by some kind of appliance. The recipes can be created to taste on the service’s website or mobile app, then IFTTT handles your stuff’s proper functioning from there. IFTTT also has a Do button, which sidesteps whatever “If” portion of the recipe and simply performs your instruction.

While GE is not the only appliance manufacturer to use the IFTTT system (some LG washers and dryers are also equipped to work), no company has taken IFTTT compatibility across appliances this far.

Still a little shakey on the IFTTT system? Here’s some examples:

If your dishwashing cycle has ended, then blink your Philips Hue lights as an alert; Use your Do button to extend the dryer’s drying time; If the refrigerator door is open longer than two minutes, send a text message.

This is only a tiny sample of the options that become available when you embrace the IFTTT system. The IFTTT system offers suggestions for new users, but it connects over 300 services, to the permutations possible for the average buyer greatly surpass what the company can suggest.

ifttt3“Having the full suite available on IFTTT allows consumers to stay on top of their home appliances in new ways that are created just for them and their lifestyle,” explained Brett Luckabaugh, GE’s connected-appliances chief.

While the IFTTT presents a completely new and exciting way to manage a home, relatively few of GE’s customers have actually started using the service. The company’s press release states that “over 400 connected users across multiple IFTTT channels” have jumped into the new service, and have created over 3000 recipes that run every week.

“It’s exciting to see GE Appliances bring their vision of a richer, more connected home to life with IFTTT,” stated Anne Mercogliano, VP of marketing for IFTTT. “Having their entire suite of smart appliances on the platform creates new connections for the hundreds of existing apps and devices on IFTTT that gives users the power to tailor their world to what is important to them.”

Apparently GE Appliances has been working alongside IFTTT since June of 2015, enabling them to add functionality for users to get more out of their GE Appliances products. The additional three new channels, which have really caused all the media buzz, add to that functionality, enabling washers, dryers and dishwasher units to be connected to more than 100 other appliances as well as connected devices via Facebook and Twitter. It brings more smart home products together.

Look Out World; Guy Fieri Cookware Hits the Market

As any home cook knows, a cook’s cookware sends a message about that cook’s particular style, flavor, and even might act as a clue to their favorite dishes. That’s why kitchen appliance design and personalized appliances are entering a new boom in the culinary industry, and a lot of higher-ups in the kitchen markets have taken heed. In fact, possibly one of the most famous chefs in the world just responded to this rising trend by releasing an entirely new line of kitchenware. I give you: Guy Fieri cookware.

Known for his big personality and frosted tips (as well as some more uncomfortable luke-warm episodes costarring his son, Hunter), Guy Fieri’s TV show and persona have transcended the typical instruction cooking time slot and become more of a lifestyle shared among a Guy-Fieri-centered community. “Cookin’ it, Livin it’, Lovin’ it” reads his Guy Fieri Designs knife sheaths. A spatula sports a picture of a bird flying and cawing while still holding a banner that reads “Guy” between its wings. Another knife sheath says “Guy!” and has some Japanese pictures of fish. Allegedly many of the images present on his line were designed by Fieri’s personal tattoo artist. Let’s take a deeper look.

True Guy lguyovers will appreciate this chef’s shirt, which offers a unique blend of more orthodox cooking culture and the grungier, edgier style that is more commonly associated with the Guy Fieri we all know and love. Any chef’s pouting midriff can be disguised by the double buttoned design recognizable as typical chef culture, but the burnt orange is a daring choice and the black lining and black skull-chef detailing shows just how far Guy is willing to go to push the envelope in terms of that it means to be a chef and a human being. The mannequin upon which the shirt is hung is actually a to-scale presentation of what Guy Fieri thinks he looks like. The denim cut offs are merely a suggestion in terms of what to pair the shirt with and may have been photo shopped into the image.

namasteBut enough about the man’s products, let’s move on to the man himself. Fieri has a particular style and mode of movement that can always be recognized, but never recreated, even by the most fervent of guy fieri studiers. His current tattoos will hopefully one day be hung in museums (after his death, of course) at which point travelers from all walks of Earth will be able to see the fine details of his “Namaste… Morgan” tattoo along with a variety of other tattoos including one with a skeleton wearing a chef’s hat. When “Namaste… Morgan” will make it onto a frying pan remains to be seen, but we can assume that his pans, clothing and personality will always be for sale as long as his trusty following remains loyal to their leader in hearty eats. In other words, so long as there is good taste in the world, there will be Guy Fieri cookware. Long live Guy!

 

 

 

Check Out This Insane New Take on Refrigeration

To be sure, the world of refrigeration is due for a major change. Commercial refrigeration technology has remained largely the same for the past century, and while scientists have been working on new ways to make cooling more energy efficient and less resource exhaustive, no one’s ideas have come close to the newest concept product to hit the blogosphere: the Bio-Robot Refrigerator.

It may look more like the inside of a septic tank than a place to store your food, but the Bio-Robot Refrigerator was a stand out design at the Electrolux Design Lab’s annual competition to create innovative home appliances. This year’s contest had a special theme: to encourage budding developers to create home appliances that would be fit for the year 2050, take up less space and energy, and not be so hard on the eyes.

biofridge blablablaWhether or not you find green slime aesthetically pleasing, you’re bound to be impressed by the idea put forward by Russian student Yuriy Dmitriev. His refrigerator uses a biopolymer gel that keeps food cool and uses practically no energy except what’s required for the refrigerator’s small control pad.

The refrigerator is basically just a door full of this biopolymer. Bubbles and food float in the gel when the refrigerator is in use. It takes up one fourth of the space of a standard door and is virtually silent. It just sort of eerily sits in whatever kitchen it calls home, seeming to project the future while encapsulating yesterday’s leftovers.

In order to remove your food from the gel-filled enclosure, you simply stick your hand in and do it live. Pictures show unwrapped fish and the like just floating around in there, but likely if you wanted to avoid cross contamination you would want to wrap all your food before throwing it in there.

While the Bio-Robot Refrigerator caught the most attention of all the submissions to the Electrolux contest, it raises a lot of questions in terms of its practical use.

electroluxFor example, even if you wrap your food before placing it in the refrigerator, accidents to happen and there tends to be some food debris or spills that end up dirtying the refrigerator. If you were to, say, put a slightly opened carton of milk in that green slime and then some milk spilled into the gel, what would you do about it? Can you only clean the thing by getting rid of tainted gel? If you get rid of the tainted gel, do you just shove it down your garbage disposal? Is any of that stuff biodegradable? Seems like it can’t be, otherwise it would just degrade next to your food.

Or on the other hand, does the gel constitute a biohazard? Do you need to put it in a biohazardous materials bag before throwing it away?

Can you put some of the gel into a cooler and have a portable refrigerator? Who knows, but the thing looks pretty cool and interesting. Maybe we’ll end up using something like it one day, but the constant gel contact is likely a liability. Some kid’s going to end up eating a fistful of it.

You Can Replace Your Circuit Breaker

Circuit breakers are integral to maintaining safety in a home’s electrical system. They ensure that if there’s an overload of electricity or similar electrical fault, the flow of electricity to an appliance will be halted before it can result in a fire or dangerous electric shock.

circuit breakerBecause circuit breakers are relatively sturdy little devices, it doesn’t always make sense to assume that the circuit breaker is the problem when you have some kind of electrical issue. However, the breaker will need to be replaced if it trips extremely easily, doesn’t trip when it should, can’t be reset, is hot to the touch, or looks and smells burnt.

If things don’t seem to be adding up and you’re not sure what the problem is or how to fix it, you might just want to call up an electrician. Electricity is extremely dangerous, especially when you’re working with a faulty system, and it’s better to leave it to the professionals than to risk harm.

If you feel confident that the issue is a faulty circuit and you’re ready to replace the breaker, here’s how:

First, you’ll need to collect a range of tools including a new circuit breaker (be sure it’s the same brand, make, model and size as the one that you’re replacing!), a rubber mat or plywood to stand on (this allows you to be insulated from potential electric shocks), an insulated flashlight or independent light source, an insulated screw driver, insulated wire strippers, cable connectors to connect the circuit breaker to the main panel, and a voltage tester to check your work once you’re completed your tasks.

Once you have everything you need to safely proceed with the fix, you’re ready to begin replacing your circuit breaker.

Begin by shutting off the branch circuit breakers one at a time. Shut off the main circuit breaker once you’ve finished with the branch circuit breakers. Test all the wires with a voltage tester to make sure the they’re dead before you go any further than this step.

circuit breaker2Now you’re ready to remove the panel cover and disconnect the wire of the breaker you’re removing from the load terminal. Carefully pry out the old breaker, paying careful attention to how it’s positioned, and insert the new breaker into the correct position. Attach the circuit’s wire to the load terminal and strip a bit of the insulation off the wires if necessary to do so. Inspect the panel for any other problems are inconsistencies that might imply that you messed something up. Tighten any loose terminals, etc.

Now you can replace the panel cover, turn on the main breaker, turn on the branch breakers one by one and test the breakers with the voltage tester to make sure everything is in order.

If you’re still having any issues, test all the electrical appliances in your home to see if one of them might be causing it. If even then you cannot locate the problem, you’ll have to bite the bullet and call up an electrician.

Are Septic Tanks for You?

They’re not the most pleasant household appliances to think about, but they keep life civilized for plenty of home owners all around the world. They also allow for RVs, airplanes, busses and boats to have bathrooms onboard, which many a weary traveler has appreciated in their moment of need. So how do septic tanks work and when is it time to invest in one? This article will help you answer those questions and many more.

septic tank2How do septic tanks work? Well, it’s not all that complicated. A septic tank is basically just a giant concrete or steel tank that is either buried in the yard or stored somewhere onboard a vehicle. Tanks vary in sizes and generally hold hundreds or even over a thousand gallons of water before they’re even used. Pipes between toilets and the tank allow for waste to enter the tank, where it either floats on top of the water and forms a scum layer or sinks to the bottom of the tank and forms the sludge layer. The middle layer is composed of a fairly clear mix of the original water and whatever particles of waste neither float nor sink.

Septic tanks contain bacteria that break down organic material in wastewater. The process creates gases that most people find extremely unpleasant. This is why sinks have loops of pipe called P-traps that hold water in the lower loop. That water blocks gases from flowing from the tank and into the house or vehicle where the tank is stationed. Instead, the gases flow up a vent pipe that generally opens up at the tip of the roof.

You may be wondering what happens when the septic tank fills. Overtime new water enters the tank, it actually displaces water that’s already been in there, which then flows out of the septic tank and into a drain field. These fields are made of perforated pipers buried in trenches filled with gravel. Drain field pipes are relatively large (around 4 inches in diameter) and open up into trenches 4-6 feet deep and 2 feet wide. The trenches are filled with about 2-3 feet of gravel and then another layer of dirt on top.

septic tank3The waste water is then slowly absorbed and filtered by the ground in the drain field. The size that the drain field needs to be is determined by how well the ground absorbs water. If the septic tank is installed in a place with hard clay that absorbs water slowly, the drain field has to be much bigger. Drain fields tend to actually be moisture and nutrient rich, making the land above them proliferate with foliage.

So who uses septic tanks and why? Septic tanks are definitely a pain to install (and downright awful to troubleshoot given some kind of issue), but they don’t necessitate a plumbing system, making them ideal for people that live off or far from the grid. They’re a lot more sanitary than a hole in the ground, but they don’t need any more electricity or infrastructure to create.

Get Your Oven Baking Again

Believe it or not, your gas or electric oven is actually a pretty simple device. If and when it malfunctions, it’s likely that you can repair it yourself as most of the components are designed for quick and easy disassembly. The following article will help you to move forward in all your DIY oven repair dreams:

First things first: before you do any work on your electric or gas range oven, be sure it is unplugged and/or you have turned off the electric power to the unit by removing a fuse or switching off a circuit breaker at the main entrance panel or at a separate panel (however it works in your household). If there is a grounding wire directly to the range, be sure to disconnect it. If you’re working with a gas range oven, you also need to be sure to disconnect the unit’s gas supply.

double ovenMost gas oven malfunctions involve the supply and ignition of gas in the burners and the oven, while most electric oven malfunctions have something to do with faulty heating elements. Let’s start with gas oven issues.

As mentioned earlier, gas ovens are designed so that they can be easily disassembled. here’s how you do it: Take out the screws that hold the panels and pull off all the control knobs (they are generally made to be friction-fit). If the control knobs have setscrews, you’ll have to back them out using a screwdriver or Allen wrench and remove the knobs. Once you’ve got the panels off, remove the back surface panel on the control panel by backing out a series of screws that likely line the edge of your panel. Remove mounting screws and control knobs so you can remove the decorative panel from its frame. If the screws are hidden by molding or trim, use a putty knife to scrape that off. To look at the burner assemblies, you’ll have to remove the burner grates and the top of the range, which should either lift up and off or open back on its hinges. Most oven doors can be removed by pulling them up and out of their hinges. If the hinges have a latch, you’ll have to unlock them. Now you know what to do if you need to replace a bulb or oven light!

gas rangeIf the flame of your gas burner isn’t quiet, steady, slightly rounded with a light-blue tip and responding to adjustments, you may have burner troubles. Likely your issue is related to your oven’s air shutter mixer plate, which you can find at the end of the burner tube near the knob controls. Turn a small screw on the plate, slide the plate open or closed, and tighten the setscrew to make the necessary adjustments.

Yellow flames imply your burner isn’t receiving enough air. Open the plate slightly to fix the problem. If the flame is too high and tends to make a loud roaring noise, it’s getting too much air and you’re going to want to close the plate slightly.

Home Decor Hacks; Make Cheap Look Expensive

With a little opportunism and good taste, you can actually stretch a dollar pretty far without making aesthetic compromises. Think about it; the difference between old and vintage can be as simple as a layer of gloss stain. Here are a few examples of smart conversions that left home owners satisfied without breaking their bank.

white furniturePaint Inexpensive Furniture with High-Gloss White Paint

If you’re going for the open, clean and pure look, cheap furniture is generally going to ruin the mood. The exception: old, antique or otherwise inexpensive furniture that could stand a layer of paint. Often furniture looks old and cheap and is sold at a low price because its paint is chipping or in bad condition; all you have to do is find a nicely designed, structurally sound example of this and spruce it up with a quick sanding and a few layers of glossy white paint. If it’s a table or cabinet, consider putting a glass pane over the top for extra fanciness.

Paint Your Vinyl or Linoleum Flooring

Although it may sound unusual, there’s no real reason not to try painting your linoleum floors if they’re driving you crazy. This is an especially cheap solution to the eye sore that cheap and dirty linoleum tends to create, especially if you’re unlucky enough to have white or light-colored floors. All you need to do is clean your vinyl or linoleum floors with soap and water, scrub them with trisodium phosphate, sand off the finish. Prime the floors with latex wall primer and paint your floor with “porch & floor” paint. This paint is made to be weather proof and walked on.

mirrorWhen in Doubt, Add a Mirror

Cheap, framed mirrors can make any bedroom door look like it was made for a rich person. They’re an easy and cost-effective way to take up wall space and make your room look larger.

Hide Your Wires

Sometimes expensive and chic vibes can be attained through absence, which is probably a relief to people who can’t afford to buy anything. So much of the minimalist, organized cleanliness of a nice home can be attained by hiding your ethernet cables and extension cords and whatnot. You can use an inexpensive base-colored curtain rod to run your cables to outlets without having to sacrifice a clean-cut look.

Use Napkin Rings and Bows to Have a Rich Person Shower

Slightly counter-intuitive since poor people don’t have napkin rings, but on the off chance you see some around, know that they’ll make a plain shower curtain look like a tasteful, minimalist choice made by someone with the money to have picked something more expensive. If you use silk ribbon to tie the curtain to the napkin rings and remove the dead cat out of your bathtub drain it will look like a princess showers in your bathroom!

Put All Your Kitchen Sink Cleaning Products on a Cake Stand

Rich people eat cake a lot more than they clean cakes, or clean anything for that matter! That’s why you want to keep your cleaning supplies on a cake stand, so people think that there is usually a cake there, but your maid put your soap on it for a moment so that she could clean your counters for less than minimum wage.