With summer in full swing, many homeowners are using the warm weather and extra time off as an excuse to make some renovations around the house. Reports indicate that over half of home repairs or renovations take place between the months of April and September, meaning summer is the busiest and best time to make the upgrades to your home that you’ve been dreaming about all year. If you’re looking to make some renovations to your home by yourself or with the help of Capitol Kitchen & Bath, here are some of the most popular home decor trends you’ll see this summer.
Add Some Plants
While houseplants and a vase of your favorite flowers can be a staple in your home year round, recent trend reports show an increase in the amount of greenery the average adult is buying to place around their home. Whether it’s a few ferns potted in your kitchen or Eucalyptus hanging in your shower, placing fresh greenery around your home is one of the quickest and easiest ways to liven up your space for the summer.
Use Natural Materials
Many interior designers are straying away from the use of metals and plastics in favor of natural, “outdoor” materials such as wood or bamboo. Adding these materials to shelving units, kitchen tables or countertops, or your living room furniture will instantly give any space a more cozy yet put together look.
Opt For Earth Tones
Keeping with the theme of bringing the outdoors into your home, many homeowners are choosing a more subdued, earthy color scheme for the interior of their home. Colors like forest green have become more popular than ever in rooms like the kitchen or bathroom, as they work well with many aesthetics and can easily compliment the colors of most appliances. If you are looking to paint your home this summer, consider an earthy green or brown tone.
Embrace Natural Light
Let the summer sunshine into your home! Sheer curtains or open blinds will allow the natural sunlight to fill your space all day long. If you live in an area where privacy is not a concern, consider ditching your window coverings altogether. This is an easy way to make your space appear more open and inviting. Plus, natural light is proven to raise serotonin levels and to act as a natural mood booster compared to artificial lights such as lamps.
Kitchen deems the essential part of your home. It needs careful consideration upon planning and installation. Everything you need to include and design in your kitchen must undergo critical preparation to achieve the design that you want to incorporate.
That said, one of the most prominent kitchen design which stayed traditionally for a couple of years is minimalism. A minimalist kitchen design showcases a sexy and sleek design look. Additionally, it also produces an environment where you use fewer materials but looks more upon completion.
Hence, we’d like to lay out to you some few ways on how to achieve a minimalist kitchen design without spending too much. These things will help you save a lot of money at the same time gives your kitchen a simple decor and furniture.
Less is More
The primary objective of having a minimalist kitchen design must be making all things simple. On the other hand, the simplification of the plan does mean the absence of your overall design.
In this case, you have to make sure that you gather everything you need to put in your kitchen. Do not include unnecessary details and focus more on the design. Choose top and base cabinets that have strong door panels for more extended storage. Lastly, the monochromatic color palette will surely help in achieving a minimalist kitchen design.
The true meaning of a minimalist kitchen design would be achieving a clean and crisp line. Always consider properly concealed handles and hinges, square edges, and sharp corners. These finishing lines should come primarily of every tile and floform finishes.
Also, the minimalist kitchen design emphasizes the simple horizontal lines, vertical lines, and solid cube forms. Make sure that you play with these shapes upon designing your kitchen to achieve a minimalist kitchen trademark ideally.
When planning a minimalist kitchen design, you have to make sure you get your focal point. Always stick with a single color palette to add a personal touch to your kitchen. Holding with one color palette will not dilute the overall effect of the design.
Moreover, you may also add a prominent light fixture over the island to make sure that your kitchen has a life and personality.
Decluttering everything that’s unnecessary in your kitchen demands the most significant factor in achieving a minimalist kitchen design. You have to put everything in place and arrange them in order.
That said, you may include smart storage types for some appliances and concealed trash bins to have a fuss-free look. Bear in mind that the true meaning of minimalism associates an open, free, and clean spaces.
Ditch Items in the Right Place
In attaining a sleek look for your kitchen, you have to make sure that you put every kitchen utensils and appliances in the right place. Relocate everything that doesn’t belong to the kitchen and put them in an area where they should accord.
Furthermore, find a location in your home where you can transfer the items that don’t belong to the kitchen in the first place.
Every minimalist kitchen design must celebrate the laxity of materials included upon installation. Make sure that you choose the right surface and textures which should be needed upon installation.
Also, designing a small kitchen prefers a minimalist theme. It is to make sure that you don’t overwhelm your kitchen space with a lot of materials and storages. At the same time, countertops, concrete, and wood grains should have beautiful qualities to achieve your goal.
Always consider that the true essence of minimalism must be making every space in your kitchen creative and sleek. Hiding every kitchen appliances that don’t need daily usage and clearing kitchen counters helps you achieve a minimalist kitchen appearance.
Thus, choosing the right material, ditching everything in the proper place, focusing on a single color palette, decluttering, and cleaning every line will surely help you achieve your goal of having a minimalist kitchen space.
Hidden germs like Salmonella, Listeria, E. coli, plus mold and yeast are lurking in your kitchen and have the potential to make you and your family very sick if you don’t know where to look.
Cheryl Luptowski, a Home Safety Expert at the National Sanitation Foundation International (NSF International) said: “People think that the bathroom is the dirtiest place in their house. When in fact the kitchen has the most germs.”
Cheryl Lupotowski and University of Arizona-Tucson Professor and Microbiologist Dr. Charles Gerba (AKA Dr. Germ) reveal the 10 dirtiest spots in the average home kitchen, plus expert advice on how to banish germs.
1. Sponges and Dishcloths Microbe: E. coli
According to a study by the NSF, more than 75% of dish sponges and rags have some sort of coliform bacteria–a family of bacteria that includes Salmonella and E. coli and is an indicator of potential fecal contamination. EXPERT ADVICE: Microwaving your sponges and dishcloths on high for about 30 seconds will kill most bacteria, according to Dr. Germ.
2. Sink Microbe: E. coli
You may think that this is one of cleanest spots because everything gets washed in the sink. 45% of kitchen sinks were found to have coliform bacteria. EXPERT ADVICE: Dr. Germ advises disinfecting the sink with a kitchen cleaner and just to be safe, don’t apply the 10 second rule when you drop food in the sink.
3. Refrigerator Vegetable Compartment Microbes: Salmonella, Listeria, yeast and mold “Dark moist environments tend to breed germs, even in the refrigerator. Produce should always be stored on a separate shelf above meat, poultry and seafood to avoid raw juices dripping onto the produce. First, avoid cross-contamination by separating ready-to-eat and unwashed produce. Also, keep them separate in your grocery cart, during food preparation, and when using kitchen tools and appliances,” said Cheryl Luptowski.
Hidden germs like Salmonella, Listeria, E. coli, plus mold and yeast are lurking in your kitchen
EXPERT ADVICE: To effectively clean the compartment, first remove the drawer from the refrigerator if possible. Cheryl Lupotowski advises washing the bin using a clean sponge or soft cloth and a mild detergent mixed with warm water. Rinse with tap water and wipe dry with a paper towel. To help control odors, use warm water mixed with a baking soda solution (about 1-2 tablespoons of baking soda to 1 quart of water). Rinse and wipe dry.
4. Refrigerator Meat Compartment Microbes: Salmonella, E. coli, yeast and mold
This is another dark moist environment that’s a breeding ground for bacteria. Store meat and seafood on a separate shelf below produce to avoid raw juices from dripping onto the produce. EXPERT ADVICE: “Clean monthly the same way you clean the vegetable compartment and whenever you see any spilled meat juices,” says Cheryl Lupotowski.
5. Cutting Board Microbe: E. coli
In a study by the NSF, 18% of cutting boards were found to have coliform bacteria. EXPERT ADVICE: Dr. Germ recommends using separate cutting boards: one for produce and one for meat, seafood, and poultry to avoid cross-contamination. Wash each one in hot soapy water and dry with a paper towel since bacteria thrive in moist environments.
6. Blender Gasket Microbes: Salmonella, E. coli, yeast and mold “Appliances and utensils that are not properly disassembled and cleaned can harbor microorganisms,” says Cheryl Luptowski.
EXPERT ADVICE: “To clean properly, completely disassemble the blender, removing the jar, lid, plus the blade and gasket at the bottom and place them all in the dishwasher after each use. If the pieces are not dishwasher safe, hand them thoroughly in hot soapy water, then rinse and dry before re-assembling,” says Cheryl Lupotwoski.
7. Kitchen Countertops Microbe: E. coli
32% of kitchen countertops were found to have coliform bacteria, according to an NSF study. EXPERT ADVICE: Wiping down countertops with dirty sponges and dishcloths increases the chance that this area will be a germ hot spot in your kitchen. Break out the kitchen disinfectant again and use disposable paper towels to clean up this area.
8. Can Opener Microbes: Salmonella, E. coli, yeast and mold
Simply rinsing this tool isn’t enough to safeguard it from germs because it comes into direct contact with food. EXPERT ADVICE: “To effectively clean, place the can opener in the dishwasher after each use (if dishwasher safe). If hand washing, wash in hot soapy water, rinsing thoroughly with clean tap water before air drying after each use. If hand washing, pay special attention to the area around the cutting blades to be sure all food residue is removed,” says Cheryl Luptowski.
9. Rubber Spatula Microbes: E. coli, yeast and mold
For two-piece spatulas, it’s important to separate the handle from the spatula portion before cleaning. EXPERT ADVICE: “If they are dishwasher safe, place both sections in the machine after each use. If hand washing, wash in hot soapy water, rinsing thoroughly with clean water. For one-piece spatulas, hand wash it thoroughly in hot soapy water, paying special attention to the area where the handle joins the spatula. Rinse thoroughly and dry,” says Cheryl Luptowski.
10. Food Storage Container with Rubber Seal Microbes: Salmonella, yeast and mold
Containers that have not been cleaned thoroughly have high counts of yeast and mold which may make food spoil quickly. EXPERT ADVICE: “If dishwasher safe, place both the container and the lid in the dishwasher and wash after each use. If hand washing, wash both the container and lid in hot soapy water, paying special attention to the area around the seal as well as any grooves where the cover attaches to the container. Rinse thoroughly and allow to air dry,” says Cheryl Lupotowski.
Salmonella: “Within 8 to 12 hours after eating a contaminated food item, a person may develop abdominal pain and diarrhea, and sometimes nausea and vomiting. Symptoms generally last a day or less, but can be more serious in older or debilitated people,” says Cheryl Lupotowski.
Listeria: “Within 7 to 30 days after eating a contaminated food item, a person may develop symptoms including fever, headache, nausea and vomiting. Listeria primarily affects pregnant women and their fetuses, newborns, the elderly, people with cancer, and those with impaired immune systems. Can cause fetal and infant death,” says Cheryl Lupotowski.
E. coli: “Within 2 to 5 days after eating a contaminated food item, a person may develop severe diarrhea (possibly bloody) and abdominal cramps. Usually little or no fever is present, and the illness resolves in 5 to 10 days,” says Cheryl Lupotowski.
It takes a steely resolve to own a restaurant. Whether you’re keeping your chefs calm as they perfect their culinary delights, making sure your waiters and waitresses are treating your customers well, or tracking down the finest ingredients for the cheapest prices, managing a restaurant can be a lot like spinning plates, except you can’t afford to spin plates if you’re running a restaurant. What if you break your precious, pricey plates? That’ll definitely dent your budget. Best sticking to metaphorical plates, then.
However, one balancing act you can’t afford to mess up is your kitchen’s cleanliness.
That’s right, the hygiene of your restaurant’s kitchen should be one of your top priorities. With health and safety inspections a constant threat and a three-strikes-and-you’re-out policy strictly adhered to, being vigilant of your workplace’s cleanliness is vital.
What’s more, no customer wants the knowledge that their food is being prepared in pongy or unhygienic conditions. Just imagine the reputation you’ll get if you’re exposed by a health and safety inspector as a filth merchant! It’s a situation that some restaurants could fail to recover from.
But, just how can you keep your kitchen safe from those dreaded inspections?
While it’s perfectly possible to keep your kitchen’s cleanliness ticking over when getting rid of day-to-day grime, sometimes you’ll need to bring in the experts for a dash of industrial kitchen cleaning.
Where your regular staff might fail to scrub, professional outfits will clean with ease, whether it’s your hard-to-reach vents or the much-neglected undersides of your shelves, industrial kitchen cleaners will be able to sanitise your workspace thoroughly, giving it that all-new shine once again.
Get your staff to be as clean as can be
It shouldn’t just be the responsibility of your cleaners to keep your workplaces tidy – every member of staff should be aware of good hygiene, and do their bit by cleaning as they go.
Most health and safety rules cover this already, with specific rules regarding cleaning directly after cutting meat to avoid salmonella, as well as various other guidelines to govern good kitchen practice. The real problem is finding employees who will follow the rules down to a tee.
So, give your staff regular crash courses on cleanliness, encourage them to always be vigilant of the mess they make and, above all, ensure that they keep your restaurant as clean as can be.
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