Acrylic, Polyester, Wool, Oh My! Tips To Choosing A Carpet.

When shopping for carpet, there are several options and many things to consider.

Going to the carpet store and seeing and touching carpet samples is going to help you decide what carpet best suits your needs and help you better understand the different types available. Before you make a decision you want to make sure you have considered the different types of carpet and fibre and how well they clean, wear, and which room they would be best suited in.

One of the first choices to make is between tufted and woven construction. Most carpets are tufted, constructed with rows of machine-punched yarns held together by adhesive and a backing. These are said to last around five and seven years. Woven carpets, made on a loom, are usually longer lasting around 20 to 30 years.

Another aspect to consider is the fibre type. Most carpet contains one of six pile fibres: nylon, polypropylene (olefin), acrylic, polyester, wool, or cotton. Carpet pile fibres significantly impact carpet performance. How the pile is cut and shaped contributes to its look and feel. For example, nylon is the most popular fibre and is a good choice for all traffic areas because it is durable and static free, maintains fibre height, and resists staining, soiling, and mildew.

Next, it is important to determine the quality of the carpet you are purchasing which can be determined by the twist level, the density and the face weight. The higher or tighter the carpet yarns are twisted, the better the carpet. Density measures how tightly the fibres are attached to the carpet backing. The closer together the fibres are attached, the less wear to each individual fibre, and the longer the carpet will last. Face weight measures the number of ounces of fibre per square yard of carpet. The higher the face weight the better the carpet.

When comparing prices remember to determine if the price includes the carpet padding, which is the most essential accessory in carpeting. Good padding will absorb the pressure of foot traffic, provide additional insulation and prevent buckling or wrinkling of the carpet.

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York Region Fairs, Festivals and Events

Just because summer holidays are over doesn’t mean the party stops! York Region in September is jam-packed with festivals. Take a look at the list below and start planning your local getaway!

Wild Wild West Magna Hoedown
Saturday, September 14, 2013
Time: 5 p.m. to midnight
Location: Magna Campus, Aurora

What started out in 1987 as a backyard barbecue for friends and neighbours has turned into an annual public celebration that has raised millions of dollars for numerous community groups and non-profit organizations. This year’s Hoedown, proudly hosted by Magna International Inc. and Neighbourhood Network, will feature performances from some of country music’s hottest acts and best new, up-and-coming artists, a Texas-style barbecue dinner, the Prospector’s Raffle along with thousands of dollars in cash prizes. Hee haw!

Newmarket Community Fall Fair
Saturday, September 14, 2013
Time: 1 – 4 p.m.
Location: Northridge Community Church

A free community event for children, youth and families offering pony rides, inflatables, refreshments, entertainment and much more! Information on Salvation Army programs and services, along with other community agencies will also be available. For more information, visit www.salvationarmycentralyork.ca.

Newmarket Buskerfestival
Saturday, September 21, 2013
Time: 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Location: Newmarket Riverwalk Commons

Stage performers and outdoor buskers including puppetry, juggling, music, face painting, clowning, circus stunts, magic, comedy, theatre, balloon twists, caricatures, dancing and great music. Free admission!

Harvest Festival at The Village
Saturday, September 21, 2013
Time: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Location: Georgina Pioneer Village

Celebrate the arrival of autumn with vintage farm equipment, historic demonstrations, food, crafts, apple cider, music, and more! Visit www.georginapioneervillage.ca/events.aspx for more information.

ARTBRIDGES – Culture days meets Doors Open Newmarket
Saturday, September 28, 2013
Time: 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Location: Main St.

An event focused around hands-on art activities. The purpose of which is to bridge diversity. Main Street will be transformed into an Arts Festival. Visit www.yorkscene.com/events for more info.

4th Annual Family Fall Festival
Saturday, September 28, 2013
Time: 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Location: Mount Albert Community Centre

Rain or shine, this festival is perfect for families of all sizes! There will be market vendors, activities and entertainment. Everyone is welcome!

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Kitchen Islands Add Function And Style

For many, a dream kitchen includes the perfect kitchen island. Not only do they look great, they can add many benefits to your kitchen.

Kitchen Island

Whether it is a custom-made built-in island or a portable version, there are several options to choose from to suit your kitchen needs and budget.

If you are looking for an affordable version, try adding a rolling kitchen island. This mobile island can look just as nice as built-in kitchen islands and as an added bonus you can move it around as needed and bring it with you when you relocate homes.

One of the biggest benefits of having a kitchen island is the additional counter space it provides. There are several countertop options to choose from. Some different styles include stainless steel, tile, wood and granite. They all provide different benefits, so see what will best suit your style and needs. Stainless steel is a versatile surface for preparing food and cooling hot pans. A tile countertop is also versatile and both granite and wood are a durable and elegant choice.

Islands can also provide extra storage, a prep station or even extra cooking space. They can feature drawers, cupboards and shelves and provide a space to store your supplies. You can add other special features like towel racks, cutting boards, recycling bins and more. If you have the space and budget you can also add appliances and sinks to your island.

Another great feature you may want to use your island for is seating. It can become a relaxing area of the kitchen. Stools or tall chairs around the island look great and add extra seating for eating, doing homework or just hanging out.

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Keep Your Home And Outdoor Items In Top Condition With These Fall Maintenance Tips

Fall Maintenance

While the weather is still beautiful, the nights are getting just bit cooler and the very tops of the trees are already starting to turn colour. Fall is heading our way and it’s time to start thinking about those outdoor autumn chores.

Start by touring your home’s exterior and note any peeling paint or cracked caulking. Fall is great weather for painting and resealing to protect your home over the winter months. Check your roof for any loose or missing shingles and make sure repairs are completed before the snow starts to fall.

If you weren’t able to get to them in the spring, clean your eavestroughs now. Have a look at the weather stripping on your doors, especially the garage doors. Replace or repair where needed to keep those winter drafts outside.

If you have large trees on your property, trim any dead or dying branches, especially any close to your home. Winter winds can snap off brittle limbs easily. If the tree is close to the curb, it may belong to the city, so call first to check. The city may elect to trim the tree or hire their own arborist to do so.

Clean out any leaves or debris from your air conditioner and cover it securely. Give your outdoor furniture a thorough cleaning and store them in a clean, dry place to ward off potential mildew.

Even if you are a year-round griller, fall is still a good time to give the BBQ a good cleaning. Use a wire brush to clean the grill thoroughly. For winter storage, remove the propane tank and store in a safe place and cover the BBQ or move it to your shed.

Garden and lawn tools should also get a good cleaning before storage for the season. Hose down your lawnmower, shovels and other tools, removing any debris. Once dry, consider covering your tools with a light coat of linseed oil before storing them to prevent rusting.

These simple annual chores will keep your home and outdoor items in top condition, prevent winter damage and even save energy.

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Creating The Perfect Outdoor Retreat

Who says you need a big backyard to enjoy your outdoor space? From porches and patios to balconies and sunrooms, even the smallest spaces can be transformed into the perfect outdoor oasis. Create a place you can go to relax and enjoy the outdoors in the privacy of your own home. Here are some ideas to create your very own outdoor retreat.

With some careful planning and creativity, you’ll be surprised by how much you can actually fit into your small outdoor space. Here are the essentials to incorporate into your design: seating, container gardening, and lighting.

Seating:
Stick with simple seating but make sure it is comfortable. You want it to have a cosy feel so you can truly sit back and relax. Adding an interesting mix of seating can really make your outdoor space feel like a comfy indoor living room.

Plants:
When limited with space it is a good idea to go up with hanging baskets. Put plants that need sun up higher, and shade plants down lower in containers. You can also purchase a bag planter that hangs up on the wall. Adding several plants in the right spots can also help with adding privacy to your retreat.

Lighting:
The right lighting always sets the mood for those quiet, relaxing evenings. Choose candles, torches or lanterns to fill your space with beautiful light. String lights, like small Christmas lights, are also a great touch.

For the daytime hours, it is nice to make sure your outdoor space, if not completely covered, has some shade. If the space allows for it, set up an umbrella or fabric gazebo.

There are also many decorative extras you can add to your space. A water fountain is a great way to make the space more tranquil and serene. Even a small one will add that special touch.

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Keep Warm All Year Round With An Outdoor Heater

Outer heater

Interested in extending those summer nights into the fall? A patio heater is the perfect way to still enjoy the outdoors on cool nights. Inexpensive and easy to use, patio heaters eliminate the need for an outdoor fire and are bylaw-friendly for use in the city.

Full Size
Similar to commercial heaters found in outdoor restaurant patios, a full size patio heater comes priced around the $250 mark. Usually standing 7 ft. tall, they produce 41,000 BTU and create a 15 ft. diameter of warmth. Slim in size, you can add additional units depending on the size of the space you wish to heat. Propane models can be moved to suit your comfort, while natural gas heaters are secured for permanent instillation. Most models operate with an easy push button start.

Table Top
A smaller version of the full size heater is available in table top form. Powered by propane or gel, these lamp-style heaters come in many designs. You can find anything from small fires in hollowed rocks to outdoor ornaments. Crafted from steel or copper, they also come with wicker or bamboo casings to complete your outdoor look. A strong heater with a high BTU (about 11,000) will produce up to 10 ft. of heat and will be priced at around $75 and above. Cheaper versions are eco-friendly and are often available in regular or citronella gel that burns smokeless and odourless flames.

Wall Mounted
Ideal for people short on space, a wall-mounted heater is the perfect solution for balconies, garages or small decks. Mounted on the side of the building, these heaters are usually electric and produce heat in the immediate area. Before installing a wall-mounted heater it is important to check building codes with your municipality to ensure bylaw compliance. They are priced at around $100.

Always check safety options with any purchase. Propane and natural gas should never be stored indoors or below ground level. Keep this in mind for winter storage. Larger units often come with covers to protect from the elements.

Many heaters come with safety tilt sensors to extinguish fire if it starts to fall. An oxygen depletion sensor acts in a similar way, ensuring safer fires.

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