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Garden Furniture

Furniture for in the garden

These days, a garden is like an extension of your home. Many people spend a lot of money on keeping their gardens nice and so they also want to enjoy them as much as possible, and gardens can only be enjoyed to the full if people spend time in them. In the past, people used their gardens primarily for growing vegetables, herbs, flowers and fruits, but these days, gardens have become more and more like another living space. Living spaces should have furniture and these days garden furniture is available in all different sizes, materials and prices.

Plastic Garden Furniture

The best deals can be found in the category of plastic garden furniture. It must be said that the term “plastic tables and chairs” no longer suits the products that represent this category.

They are available in every color, size and different levels of quality. The base is always a table with a parasol and chairs. The chairs are usually made to be used as both sitting and reclining chairs and they normally come with together with high quality cushions. The chairs can be used to enjoy a meal at the table or they can double as a bed to have a nap in the shade or do some tanning the sun. Besides these basic furniture pieces, they are many other types of furniture which can be used in the garden.

Plastic garden furniture is extremely popular, and not just because it it cheap. Plastic is also an easy material to keep clean, it is light and portable and it does not require much upkeep.

Wooden and Metal Garden Furniture

Plastic is generally known to be less durable than other materials. Although some people claim that this is not the case, it is pretty clear that hardwood garden furniture and modern metal garden furniture will last longer than plastic furniture. Naturally, this durability comes with a bigger price tag.

If you have the money to spend on it, then a great set of wooden garden furniture will become one of your most prized possessions in the garden. Teak is a type of wood that requires very little maintenance, although if you do not like the weathered look, you will need to treat the wood from time to time. Teak garden furniture is stylish and is available is a wide variety of shapes and sizes.

The more modern look of metal or aluminum is also quite nice. Aluminum also has the advantage of being lighter and thus more portable.
 



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Wrought Iron Gates

Gates

A gate is the traditional way to close of an entry point. It serves to protect the home from the outside world and also serves as a welcome symbol when it is opened. Gates come in all shapes and sizes. Wrought Iron gates have been popular for centuries due to their functionality. Visitors will enter through the gate and a wrought iron gate it the best calling card any home could have.

Wrought Iron Gates

Wrought iron gates are for use both in and outside the home. Inside the home, they are usually used as decorative mood setters. But wrought iron gates are most often used as the point of entry for a private residence.

Wrought iron doors can be made by a blacksmith. Often, these blacksmiths specialize in crafting gates and then go through life as an artistic or decorative craftsman. Making wrought iron gates is an art and the blacksmith’s level of skill will usually be apparent by the way the finished product looks.

A gate can of course also just be an ordinary rectangular shaped gate, with two sides, but often with blacksmiths who love their trade, the design and style of the gate will be very important and wrought iron gates will often incorporate curls or forged leaves.

The most common designs are the farm gates and the castle gates. The gates can be a part of the whole iron fence, but often they will be attached with the help of two stone pillars. Wrought iron fences are heavy and must be firmly attached to ensure that the gate will remain in the proper position so that it will open and close without any difficulty, even after many years.

Finishing of wrought iron gates

A wrought iron gate can rust over time, so it is very important that the gate is treated before it is exposed to the elements. There are different methods for protecting gates against the different weather conditions.

The most commonly used method is to coat the gate. During this process, the whole gate will be coated with a kind of powder coating, after which the powder will be burned into the gate by being heated in an oven. The result is that the powder turns to a hard coating which is able to withstand the elements. The coating is available in many different colors.

Another thing that will need to be taken care of is the lock. A normal lock can of course be attached to other gates or doors and fitted with an automatic gate drive. This is a mechanism which will enable the heavy gate to open and close. It is not even necessary to lock this type of gate with a key, because the mechanism will lock the gate automatically after it closes.



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Rustic Garden Decorations

Rustic Style

The rustic style can be defined as rough around the edges, charmingly simple, no-nonsense, somewhat unfinished, yet still possessing endearing qualities. Rustic décor is done with natural or older materials. Rustic means rural and country style decorations, whether for inside the home or outside the home, rustic decorations will stick with these basic standards. The objects can be painted, but they should be painted in soft natural colors. It is also a typical trait of rustic decorations, to have some imperfections and have the paint looking a bit weathered. Rustic decorations are often made up of items which are actually somewhat farm style and exude that quality.

Rustic Garden Decorations

When it comes to rustic garden decorations, one often thinks of objects which can be found on farm properties, and especially those which are a bit older from about a generation ago. It is not about antique objects or decorations, because obviously, you would not want to expose those to the elements. Good examples of rustic garden decorations would be birdhouses made from unpainted wood or straw, watering cans and basins made from zinc or metal, stone sun dials, lanterns, welcome mats, simple cement statues and terracotta pots.

One style that is often used for rustic gardens are the American and English country style decorations. These are a bit different from the real rustic garden decorations because they have a bit too much color and detail. The best thing about rustic garden decorations is that they attract attention due to their simplicity.

Alternative Rustic Garden Decorations

To find these types of rustic garden decorations, you would have to find them by chance, in an old shed, or yard sale. If not, you will have to be prepared to spend a decent amount on the right materials, because of course, the nicer the materials, the more expensive they will be.

Luckily, there some cheaper options which often do not look much different than the real thing. These alternative rustic garden decorations, made from plastic (like vases, pots, and doorstoppers) are often made so well that you will hardly be able to tell the difference between them and the real deal. Another advantage to these plastic products is that they are extremely hardy and will be able to withstand the harsh Dutch weather conditions.
 



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Leather Furniture

Leather

Leather is a natural and durable material. It is often used for clothing, shoes and coats. Another common use for leather is as a cover for furniture. Leather furniture is certainly not cheap but it is known to last for a long time. Leather furniture exudes functionality and luxury. A good example would be the interior of a car with leather covers. Leather has become extremely popular and as a result people started looking for cheaper alternatives to leather. This is how imitation leather came to be created. Imitation leather furniture looks very much the same as real leather furniture, but unfortunately it is usually not as durable.

Different Types of Leather Furniture

Many people have leather furniture in their home. Leather is favored because it is both beautiful and comfortable. If one wants to invest in some leather furniture, most furniture stores have leather furniture in stock. There are even some stores that specialize in leather furniture. Often when one thinks of leather furniture, leather couches come to mind.

But one should not forget the dining chairs with leather coverings. Dining chairs are available in old fashioned styles. Usually it is primarily the oak wood chairs which are covered in leather, but dining chairs can also come in modern styles, such as white leather or black leather dining chairs. The same goes for couch sets, they come in both old fashioned or rustic styles and also in extremely new and modern designs.

Things which are less common to see are table tops which are covered in leather. Leather table tops have become more popular in recent years for luxurious desks and bureaus.

Maintenance of Leather Furniture

Maintaining leather is very important. This is because it is a natural product. Leather is a “living” material and every type of leather has its own unique characteristics. When investing in leather furniture, it is important to find out about their upkeep and maintenance. In order to keep leather supple, it must be treated with special oil for leather every now and then. Nearly every type of leather needs a yearly cleaning as well.

In order to keep leather in good condition for as long as possible, one must ensure that the leather is not exposed to direct sunlight or direct heat. The room where the leather furniture is kept should not be too dry either.


 



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Chandeliers

How Chandeliers Were Invented

In the middle ages there was a need to light large spaces where many people were gathered. In most ordinary houses, there were only candlesticks, but these did not give enough light in a larger building, such as a castle or church.

So people began hanging wooden frames from the ceiling, and on these wooden frames, they would then place multiple candlesticks.

Those who were better off, of course, tried to set themselves apart from the commoners and soon the wooden frame was replaced with a copper or bronze frame, and the arms were decked out with crystals and glass which helped to reflect the light.

The Classic Crystal Chandelier

After the light bulb was invented, electricity began to play a part in the way  functioned. All of the famous designers, primarily in Italy, Austria and Bohemia, began to adapt their designs. Since those days, light bulbs have not changed very much. Famous designs are the Venetian chandelier, the bejeweled chandelier and the Marie-Theresa chandelier.

Antique crystal chandeliers have a certain charm, but the newer models are often more beautiful because the materials have been used more skillfully. The superior quality of the Swarovski crystal is a good example of this. These classic chandeliers, whether old or new, bring a nostalgic feel to old buildings and classically designed homes. They can also bring a nice contrast to a more modern interior.

Modern Chandeliers

Naturally, the lighting industry has not remained the same over the last one hundred years, and aside from the classic designs, many new varieties have been developed.

Modern chandeliers are often very different from the first chandeliers which were designed. This is because they have purposely been designed in an asymmetrical way. Designers are also using many different colors, like the trendy colored crystal for example.

Crystal is not even absolutely necessary in a chandelier anymore. These days there are some beautiful chandeliers which are made from steel or completely out of glass.

These days, it is also not as necessary that chandeliers are extremely durable. Where in the past, chandeliers were primarily used in palaces, castles, churches and mansions, these days’ chandeliers are available to suit any size of home and wallet.


 



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Iron Fencing

Fencing

Fencing serves to mark where the limits of a property end. Another function which fencing serves is to protect the home as it will keep people from entering your property.

When a fence is placed as a separation between two different gardens, it is advisable to consult with your neighbor before you place any fence between the two properties. The view of a garden can be much improved by placing an iron fence. This is particularly true when it comes to ornamental fencing.

 Iron ornamental fencing

 There are many different possibilities when it comes to iron ornamental fencing. You can choose from a variety of shapes and finishes and you can choose the color as well. You might choose for square or round points, or maybe an additional middle beam with intricate designs. In most cases, ornamental fencing is made from iron or metal. This ensures that the fence will not begin to rust and will retain its original color. This makes iron fencing pretty much maintenance free.

There are plenty of different types of iron ornamental fencing. A classic ornamental fence with an ornamental gate is the most popular type. But the classic look of this fencing is not always the reason it is chosen. It can also help to protect the property from unwanted visitors. The stylish points of the fencing are especially daunting and make it very difficult for unwanted visitors to enter. Iron ornamental fencing can also greatly bring up the value of a property.

 Iron Fencing

Aside from ornamental fencing, there are many other types of iron fencing. The most common of these is the wire mesh fencing. This type of fencing uses mesh between the metal poles.

 Another very common type of iron fencing is the bar fencing. This type of fencing is simple and very functional for any modern, well kept garden. Bar fencing is available in many different heights and types. This type of fencing is also excellent to keep away any unwanted visitors, as the top part of the bars is leveled. The thickness of the bars, whether they are round or square, ensures that the fencing is sturdy. When combined with horizontal bars, this fencing can be as strong as a brick wall.



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Cast Iron Decorations and Ornaments

Cast Iron

Cast iron is made by melting rough iron such as scrap steel and iron and mixing it together with other elements like lime and a type of coal. After it has been melted, the liquid is poured into molds. Because of its rough texture, cast iron objects are easy to recognize. Cast iron is hardly used anymore for heaters and kitchen utensils these days, so these cast iron objects tend to bring up nostalgic feelings in homeowners. This is certainly true in the case of cast iron ornaments and other decorations used around the home and garden.

Cast Iron Decorations

When one thinks back on the old walls or stone fencing, cast iron decorations will usually come to mind. In the old days, these decorations were not always used purely for their decorative value. Often, wooden planks were attached to the wall with the help of cast iron screws or anchors.

On the wall end the wall anchor was often made in a special shape or form, in order to give it some decorative value and character. Till this day you can still see them on older buildings and walls.

The year in which the building was built was usually also displayed in the form of decorative cast iron letters and numbers on a plaque. Sometimes the name of the building or farm was also displayed on a plaque in the form of cast iron letters to give it some decorative value.
After this, pictures made from cast iron were also created to decorate the walls of buildings or walls. These days, cast iron decorations are primarily used to give a home a nostalgic feeling.

Cast Iron Ornaments

In gardens these days, you will often see lots of ornaments made from cast iron. On the stone columns near the entrance of the driveway, on both sides of the gate, you will often see some cast iron ornaments.

The most common cast iron garden ornaments are the decorations at the top of the garden walls or divides. The same designs are also used in the same gardens for things like rose gardens, because this helps the whole garden feel complete.
Cast iron ornaments are also used for a variety of other accessories in the garden, such as tables for the plants, lanterns or hooks for hanging plants.
 



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Cast Iron Statues and Iron Vases

Cast Iron in the Garden

Cast iron is a material that is often used in gardens. It is a material that holds strong nostalgic value for many people and it gives a kind of Victorian atmosphere. In the last two centuries; statues, ornaments, fountains and vases for in the garden were often made from cast iron. This is primarily because it is a strong, durable material and it can withstand all types of weather conditions.

Cast Iron Statues

Cast iron statues give the garden a special character. The main reason they create an especially unique atmosphere is because they are very life like. As the weather changes, the color also changes, which gives it the qualities of a real statue.

Cast iron statues come in many shapes and sizes. The ones which are most commonly seen are the ones which are found in gardens, in the form of different animals. But in recent years, larger statues are also made from cast iron. An interesting example of this would be the cast iron fountains which depict a certain scene.

When it comes to cast iron, people are often stuck with the idea that it can only be used for statues which exude certain nostalgia, but the material is also extremely useable for the modern statue art.

Cast Iron Vases
 

The biggest trend from the last few years is, without a doubt, having a cast iron vase in the garden. Whether it is a question of a large vase on a cast iron platform or stand, or a smaller vase placed somewhere on the terrace, a cast iron vase brings a unique feel to any garden. It is also great in combination with many the bricks which are also used as garden decorations these days.

The most common one is the calyx model which is available in all sizes. The advantage of using cast iron is that it is quite heavy. This means that the vase does not have to be filled with earth in order to stay standing up. It can always remain in the garden as decoration and it will not blow over with strong winds. Because the cast iron vases tend to rust, it is important to remember not to place them on tiles or pavement stones.
 



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Bronze Statues

Bronze

Bronze is a mixture of copper and tin, the mixture has a green-yellow color. Because of the presence of the tin in the mixture, it is harder and less supple than copper. Early on, people already discovered that bronze had some special properties and an era has actually been named after the material. It is called the Bronze Age (3000 – 800 before Christ).

It was the first material that had many different uses, such as making tools, weapons, jewelry and statues. Even after more suitable materials were discovered for making weapons and tools, bronze remained popular for making statues. Today, many bronze statues are still made because of the fact that it is a durable and beautiful material. Bronze statues can be poured into molds and the advantage of using bronze for this method of statue making is that the statues can be very detailed.

Bronze Statues

Bronze statues come in all shapes and sizes, from very small to very big. Many famous historical people such as politicians, lords and ladies, admirals and scientists have had a statue made in their image and now even long after their death they can still be admired as bronze statues. Bronze statues can be made to depict whole bodies, such as the statues of people riding horses, or they can be busts which depict only the head. Some famous examples include the “Pieta” by Michelangelo and “The Thinker” by Rodin.

People often also create bronze statues of family members to be presented on special occasions and bronze statues have become popular for anniversaries. In many companies today, you can find a bronze statue of the company’s founder in the reception area.

Bronze Garden Statues

Bronze statues can be placed both outside and inside. Corrosion caused by the weather creates a green oxide layer on the statues, which give them a unique look. If you wish, you can also remove the oxide layer or prevent it by using a special product.

Regardless of the color, these bronze statues will give your garden a special allure. Whether he statues are of people or animals, large or small, these bronze works of art will give your garden the finishing touch. It doesn’t matter how old the bronze statues are, they will always remain beautiful. It is of course more special if you have a personalized statue created for your garden, but there are plenty of bronze statues to choose from which have already been made. Bronze statues of animals are especially popular for gardens.



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Antique and old building materials

Antique or old building materials?

The general rule for whether or not an object can be deemed to be antique is that it must be at least 50 years old and handcrafted. Sometimes the minimum age of an antique object will be set higher, sometimes up to 75 or even 95 years old.

With building materials, it is hard to define which ones are and are not antique. A concrete foundation of 50 years old will never be named antique. But some clay tiles of the same age may very well be sold as antique. In general, building materials are defined as antique when they are more than 100 years old. These antique building materials come not only from the Netherlands and Belgium, but also from Germany, France and even Czech Republic, Poland, China, India and Mongolia. Antique and old building materials give the home a warm atmosphere and have become extremely popular in recent years.

Antique and old building materials for around the home

Tiles from your grandmother’s day have a different and unique feel to them, and luckily they were not all lost with the renovations. The old white tiles often find their way to the kitchen and there are many halls and kitchens which have been decorated with the well-known turtle tiles. Old roof tiles are in whole other category and can also give a home a nostalgic feel. Whole outside walls are often spruced up with old bricks.

But even old wooden building materials and cast iron window frames are very popular. In many living rooms there are old wooden floors and some of these have even come from old castles. They don’t always need to be oak wood floors, because a polished old and grainy floor can bring back that special atmosphere from the old days. Other popular wooden building materials include old stairs, front doors and panel doors.

This list of antique and old building materials would not be complete without the antique fireplaces. An open fire place has something joyful and cozy about it, and when the fireplace is made from antique materials, such as old sandstone or antique wood, it really becomes the central part of any room.

Antique and old building materials for the garden

Even a garden can be decorated with beautiful old and antique building materials. The same stones which are used for the outside wall can also be used in the partitions throughout the garden or for the restoration of an old well. Old fencing and gates can also be fixed up to look like new. These are available in all shapes and sizes. The garden often comes to life more when old building materials are used instead of new ones.



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Baroque Furniture

Baroque

Baroque stands for a period from the 17th century until the beginning of the 18th century, when a certain style was popular and widely used. It originated in Italy.

The name baroque, can be traced back to the Portuguese word, barocco, which means “uneven pearl.” The unevenness, full of frills is a style that was used for many things, including architecture, garden architecture, music and sculptures.

The furniture from that era was also made in the same style, which is why it is often called baroque furniture. Baroque furniture can be recognized by its intricate and elaborate decorations, often in the form of flowers, leaves, or angels. The style of the furniture’s legs too makes it recognizable. Whether the furniture piece in question is a table, chair or cupboard, they all have the same curved shapes.

Baroque Furniture

Baroque furniture exudes luxury and elegance. In classic designs, these furniture pieces are able to reach their full potential.

Baroque furniture is always handmade and for this reason it is always excellent quality. Most of this furniture today is still made in Italy, its country of origin. Baroque furniture is made from only the best quality of wood. The couches and dining room chairs can be covered with either cloth or leather, but the wood is always still visible in each piece of furniture. Besides lounge and dining areas, baroque furniture can also include clocks, side boards and cupboards, lounge tables, complete bedroom sets, TV furniture, tea carts and cushioned stools, all designed in the specific baroque style.

Different Styles of Baroque Furniture

Originally, baroque furniture was made with a transparent layer of varnish to ensure that the structure of the wood remained clearly visible. Over time however, other styles of baroque furniture began to emerge.

One notable style of baroque furniture is the style in which the wood is painted with a gold finish. This style was extremely popular in palaces and mansions and they served a kind of symbol of the owner’s wealth and prosperity.

Another very notable style was the style where the wood was worked with a type of crackedpaint. It does not exactly give the furniture a used look but it is meant to be in the same baroque style, very uneven. Often, the cracked finish is white, but it sometimes also comes in gold.

Baroque furniture is often thought to be used only in classic buildings, but this is not always true, as these days many modern designers are have rediscovered the style and are using it in their creations. Many modern baroque furniture pieces can be used in a modern interior as well.



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