Various Types of Staircases For Homes

All homes that have more than one story will need a staircase in order to get to and from the different floors. Over the years there have been changes in the styles of staircases that can be used in the home. If you are thinking of changing an existing staircase or are wondering what kinds you can choose from here are the main types of staircases.

To start with you need to be aware that staircases can now be made from a range of materials. The most common is still a timber set of stairs which can be made out of different woods. Most homes will have a staircase like this and the majority will cover them in carpet.

Another very popular type of material for staircases is a mixture of steel stairs and supports and glass panels. These create a really modern look and a lot of newer homes will have them. As well as looking modern, they also create a sense of space which many people are looking for.

Probably the most well known staircase type is a straight style. These are usually in a single set or are set at an L shape, with one flight leading from the next. Most homes will have stairs like this as standard as they are very easy to install.

Spiral staircases are great if you are short on space. They are good for putting in the corner of the room as they rise straight up. In addition to this a spiral staircase will only need a small amount of floor space and will not cut across the room. With this in mind many people will opt for a spiral shaped staircase for access to an attic room.

Freestanding stairs will not be attached to a wall and will tend to run through the middle of a room. Most of the actual stairs will look as though they are almost floating and create a really unique look. Whilst these stairs look great they are not very practical for a person with young children as they can be dangerous.

Single open-under stairs are similar to freestanding stairs, but they are attached to one wall. This means they only have one side that looks 'open' and many people prefer this style. Not only do these types of stairs look good they also create the impression of more space, so they can work well in small houses.

Circular stairs are most commonly found in lighthouses and other older period properties. They are very unusual and not many house will have these, as you would imagine. Due to their construction it can be hard to integrate circular stairs into a home and most people will use a spiral staircase instead.

With so many different types of staircases it can be hard to make a decision on what you would like. However, it makes sense to think about the practicalities that the types of staircases offer before making a choice. Do this and the ideal staircase for your home will become clear.

Stairway to Heaven One of the Best Songs

Stairway to heaven is probably the most played and listened song in the radio stations. In is probably being played in everyday radio stations in America and England. It is understandable in a sense that it has a big fan base consisting of mostly people in their 30's and above. It is not surprising that the eight minute song is one of Led Zeppelin's best songs ever made. The song and the lyrics are magnificently crafted and it was complimented with amazing melodies. Just listening to the instruments alone is something worth hearing.

I myself am fascinated with the musical instruments and how it perfectly matches the song. It could not have been done any other way. In fact most of the fans in a recent poll survey voted that Stairway to Heaven was probably their number one choice when asked from the various hits made by Led Zeppelin. It is not surprising in a sense that most fans voted the song. The guitar alone made me want to cry. I practically practiced the guitar while I was in my teens. That was how I loved the song. My friends even used it to serenade ladies. I did not know why but maybe we did it for the fun of it.

Just listen to the song. I am sure that when you hear it you would probably feel something. It is a song that pierces the core of your heart. The song is a masterpiece and I could not imagine Led Zeppelin making a song better than Stairway to Heaven.

Bridging the Gap, Using Scaffolding in Autism

Scaffolding is a term first used by Bruner, a psychologist in the 1950’s, to describe how parents help children to learn. Scaffolding is about providing support to your child so that they can achieve and learn something new to them and bridge their understanding. In order to fully understand scaffolding, it is important that you understand the zone of proximal development.

The zone of proximal development is a term coined by Vygotsky in 1978, also a psychologist, to describe the area between what your child already knows and what your child does not yet know, but almost knows. Understanding what your child does know and what they do not yet know provides us with useful information to find the next step of discovery for them and how we can support them in that discovery.

Once your establish this on going learning curve, you provide your child with as little scaffolding as possible to help them succeed on their own, with out over compensating for them. It is important that your child feels competent at what they are doing with the level of scaffolding you provide them; we don’t want your child to be over compensated but we also don’t want them to shut down and feel failure, particularly if their resilience is low.

Problem solving plays a big role in your child making the cognitive process towards their discovery. The mental processes that are supported through borrowing the guides thought processes learn to develop effectively on their own with less and less support. Physical guidance and scaffolding also contribute to a child being able to reach their discovery.

A common example I like to use is when a child is just learning to take their first steps, we tend to know when it is right for them and when they are ready (we wouldn’t start before crawling) and then we tend to provide them with the tiny bit of support that they need to get them where they want to go (typically child grasping onto index fingers as they move forward), but so that they are still doing the majority of the work (we wouldn’t do it all for them).

So here are some techniques and tips that help to scaffold your child toward their discovery;

1 – Frame/ plan your activities well so that you know what the big discovery will be.

2 – Think about your zone of physical connection i.e. the distance between you in order to help the child succeed with as little help as possible.

3 – Think about how your verbal and non verbal communication will play a role in supporting your child so that you do not over compensate and instead scaffold just enough for the child to succeed.

4 – Think about your planning and timing in order to allow your child to succeed in the time that they need.

5 – Consider the role that you are expecting your child to fulfil, is it reasonable? Will it benefit them? What will they learn from this interaction?

Next time you have a goal in mind for your child, consider these two things;

1 – Is this goal within my child’s zone of proximal development?

2 – How will I scaffold my child to make this discovery as much as possible on their own?

Laminate Flooring on Stairs

Laminate flooring on stairs is equally very helpful just like it is helpful on floors. You will have great looking stairs with all the admirable qualities that come with laminate flooring. It is a great way to upgrade your stairs in a very affordable way. You do not have to worry about your stairs being a different color from your floors. Also, you will eliminate the othersome noise that is regularly experienced when people are going up and down the stairs. Also, it will not take a lot of material to transform your stairs. However, in another view, laminate flooring on stairs is highly discouraged. The main reason for this is that the finish is too slippery.

Also, according to some people, the labor required to install the laminate flooring is much more than is called for. It has been suggested that other enhancements can be made to reduce this slippery nature and many have done so. The bottom line is that people have different perceptions and opinions. What you need to do however is to make sure you get all the necessary information that will assist you make the right decision. Before you make any decision, you must consider whether you have the budget to do so and whether you are willing to be flexible for any other costs that may occur above the budget. You need to know the advantages and disadvantages that come with laminate flooring on stairs. You must consider the kind of traffic in your home.

Very young children who are fond of going up and down the stairs are constantly a factor to consider. Also, look at the lives of people who have installed the laminate flooring on stairs. They may have found the stairs to be helpful or the opposite. You need to know what to expect so that you do not regret your decision. Also, it will be vital to know what the manufacturers recommendations are. The are best placed to direct you on what to add to slippery stairs so that the problem can be solved. The best thing about laminated stairs is that they stay clean with that very attractive shin. There are several things that go into installing the stairs with lamination.

There is no major difference when installing floors only that more care and precision has to be observed. It has been found to take more work but the results will be breathtaking. It it therefore vital to consider having lamination on stairs if you find that they will serve you in the right way. For more information on this topic you can visit sites that will seek to explore both the pros and cons in detail. There is no doubt that more light will be shed and you will be less confused when faced which the option to laminate or not to laminate stairs. If you have installed the lamination on stairs, it will be helpful for you to share with many concerned people on how your life has changed if at all.

Conversion Varnish Comparison to Lacquer

Lacquer is a general term used to describe clear-coated over natural or stained wood.

In this article, we will be explaining the difference between a traditional lacquer and a conversion varnish. To the untrained eye, both finishes look identical. A lacquer is a single-component, pre-catalyzed, nitro-celluloid finish that has 12-18% solids by volume. It is air-cured. A conversion varnish is a high-end solids, two-part post-catalyzed lacquer, which means a hardener must be mixed with this product for the application. Conversion varnish is 40-60% solids by volume and is chemical-cured. Most lacquers cost $25/gallon. Most conversion varnishes are $60-80/gallon.

It takes a greater mechanical aptitude to apply a conversion varnish properly. A conversion varnish has twice the dry film thickness as a lacquer. CV is more durable and slightly more elastic than a lacquer. This elasticity is an advantage for wood joint expansion. Conversion Varnish is more expensive than lacquer; the material costs are higher by 30%-50%, which is substantial for larger projects. CV is higher in solids and has a higher buildup and is significantly more durable than lacquer. Conversion Varnish vs. Traditional Lacquer Exposed wood surfaces require a finish to preserve color, texture and prolong the life of the material. When searching for a proper finish, many will select one of two options: varnish or lacquer. But what exactly is the difference between these two products? What are the benefits of using one over the other? Though the results may look similar, there are some key differences to these two materials. Selecting the proper finish is not only a matter of protection, but also brings out the way you want the final product to look and feel. Traditional lacquers consist of a pre-catalyzed, nitro cellulose finish that has 12 to 18 percent solids per volume and is air cured. Being pre-catalyzed, there is no need for the mixing of hardeners, thus making lacquer a single component finish. Because of its low solid content, lacquers often have to be reapplied many times for proper build and solid film density. Most traditional lacquers will run, on average, about 25 dollars per gallon CV is a two component, post catalyst, chemical cure finish. This particular finish requires the mixing of an independent catalyst with the varnish itself. This is a delicate process as the mixture must have the correct ratio of the two chemicals in order to harden properly. However, with its higher solid content of 40 to 60 percent by volume and a dried film density of twice that of traditional lacquer, conversion varnish takes fewer coats for a complete build and satisfactory film density. Because of its ability to cure chemically, dry time is drastically shorter than that of traditional varnish. With its rapid hardening, this varnish does take more finesse in terms of even application.

Furthermore, conversion varnish is also more costly with prices ranging from 60 to 80 dollars a gallon. Nevertheless, the results speak for themselves. CV is more durable and has a higher elasticity, which allows it to hold up better through wood joint expansion. Though either product will provide protection for wood surfaces, it is the conversion varnish that will succeed in providing a long lasting, durable finish.

Beauty and Quality – A Karastan Carpet Review

When you are looking to buy a new carpet, quality should be the number one item on your list of things to look for. A beautiful carpet is definitely important, and you want it to fall soft and plush beneath your feet, but nothing as vital a factor as the quality of the materials and how it is made. A quality carpet will not only look beautiful, but it will retain that beauty for years to come, and will keep stains and signs of wear at bay.

If you are looking for a carpet manufacturer that has proven itself to be an industry leader, consider using Karastan carpeting in your home. Karastan has been a world renowned carpet and rug manufacturer for years, and has a top notch reputation to back up its name. The products that they produce are known not just for their beauty, but for their quality as well, and are sure to stand up well in your home, making you glad that you decided to go with Karastan after all.

One reason that Karastan produces such quality carpets and rugs is that all of the products they make are woven, as opposed to being tufted. A woven rug or carpet will last twice as long as a tufted rug, meaning that you will enjoy your purchase for many more years. Another plus is that Karastan makes their rugs and carpets with environmental concerns in mind, using only renewable resources. You will be able to have not just a beautiful rug in your home, but one that you do not have to feel guilty about.

Common Toe Deformities

The toes are often made to suffer in the name of fashion. High heels, narrow and restrictive toe boxes, and cute pointy shoes may really bring an outfit together, but they could be doing considerable damage to your feet. Toe deformities are frequently caused by footwear, and over time it is likely that your feet will adopt the same pointy shape as your shoes. When that happens, balance can be affected, your feet will look deformed and you could be in considerable pain and require surgical correction.

If your toes are looking a little worse for wear, maybe you have one of the following five common toe deformities starting to develop. Fortunately taking action early can see all of these conditions easily reversed. Do nothing and you could be on the road to future foot pain.

Hammer Toes

Hammer toes are irregularities which cause the toes to become bent over, resembling a claw or a hammer. Hammer toes are most common on the second toe. It is the longest, and the one which I most likely to be restricted by shoes. Hammer toes occur when the toe bends in the middle at the first interphalangeal joint, causing the toe to bend upwards, with the end of the toe curling round.

Hammer toes form sometimes due a structural abnormality in the feet, but more often they are caused by improper footwear. For example, women who wear high heels very frequently diagnosed with this problem. Extra pressure is applied to the toes causing them to deform and distort. There are different toe straightening devices which can be used to cure the condition and a change of footwear may be all that is required to see the deformity correct itself.

Mallet Toes

Mallet toes are similar to hammer toes in appearance, and the two are frequently confused. Mallet toes occur when the last joint of the toe curls around, at the distal interphalangeal joint. Mallet toes are commonly caused by improper footwear too. Mallet toes form gradually, taking time to form. In the beginning they are flexible and can be straightened but if they are not treated they become rigid and even manual manipulation will not straighten them. Mallet toes can occur in any of the lesser toes but the second one is the most likely to be affected.

Claw Toes

There is a flexor tendon called the digitorum brevis which is attached to the middle bone in the toe (medial phalanx). When the tendon is stretched and contracted, it can override all the toe muscles. This condition is called claw toe. This condition pulls the middle joint downwards; therefore the joint which is attached to the middle phalanges rises up giving your toe a claw-like shape. A claw toe affects both interphalangeal joints.The condition is more serious than the above mentioned two, and can see the toe curl underneath the foot. It can also lead to formation of several other conditions like foot ulcers or calluses.


The first joint of the big toe is a common site for a toe deformity. In response to pressure the metatarsal head can move outwards causing a bump on the site of the foot. The body can also lay down new bone adding to the size of the lump. The foot very often gets misshapen with the bone growth and the big toe moves outward at the base, and starts to point towards the others. The bunion sufferer experiences pain, redness and inflammation and the lump can rub against shoes causing broken skin and can easily become infected. Bunions form in response to constant pressure from restrictive shoes, and as bunions form the pressure increases making the deformity grow faster.


A bunionette forms on the exterior of your foot close at the corresponding joint of the small toe. It also commonly called a tailor’s bunion. Misalignment of the head of the fifth metatarsal causes this bump to form on the outside of the foot. In this condition your fifth toe becomes disoriented and moves inwards slanting towards the others. It can make shoes highly uncomfortable to wear. The condition can be treated either with surgery or orthotic footwear or a change of shoes in the early stages of its formation.

How to Use Landscaping Bricks

There are many items of decoration you should take into account when designing your landscape yard, and landscaping bricks should be one of them. Landscaping bricks are very versatile, easy to use, and most important, inexpensive. You can find them in different variations and you can buy them everywhere. That’s why landscaping bricks fit in with your landscaping design, and you can let your imagination go wild and make something that will last for ever in just a couple of days. Even if you’re a novice, you’ll get satisfying results.

You can use landscaping bricks for virtually everything, separate or border flower beds and areas in your garden, create a brick patio or even a barbecue, pathways, walls, raised flower beds, your imagination is the limit. If you plan to create a brick patio, you’ll need to use mortar to fix the bricks. You can use a basket weave design, which is easy to make and it’s very attractive. If you are thinking of using bricks in your flower garden, you can create lines and separate areas or to attract the visitors’ eyes to a certain spot.

If you are planning to build a pathway, an option would be to use crushed brick, in which case you’ll need to line the bottom with a special fabric, to avoid particles from getting lost. Or you can simply use bricks to create a pathway or sideway. In this case, you can use a basket wave design or just place them in a row, one by one.

These are just a few decorative suggestions you can use to improve your landscaping design. But in fact, you can use bricks for anything that needs to be built. And the question is:

Where can you buy the best bricks available?

There are many places you can buy bricks from. In fact, they’re so many, that you’ll need to invest some time in finding the best cost/quality relation for you. You should buy the best landscaping bricks you can afford. Remember they will last for a long time, so the better the quality the better the result.

One popular store where you can find quality landscaping bricks at a fair price is Freshfield Lane Brickworks. And the good thing is, you don’t even have to move from home, you can even order online. At their site, you can browse its extensive selection of bricks, as well as other landscaping items you can buy. There, you can find tips for your design, tricks as well as a lot of creative ideas that will help you find inspiration for your next landscaping project.

Rain Gutters – How To Install Rain Gutters And Downspouts

One of the many joys of being a homeowner is installing or maintaining your gutters and downspouts. Well, if you're looking for some basic tips on how to install rain gutters this article should give you some good points.

What Is Your Slope Angle?

The first thing you want to do is find the slope on your eaves. Where does the water flow?

Once you know this aspect, you can take a line-level and stretch it across your eave and mark off the high point on one side and the low point on the other.

You want the slope of the guttering to be 1/4 "- 3/8" for every 10 feet. Anything less and you run the risk of water not draining properly.

Once you have the marks made, you can go back with a chalk line and snap off the reference line.

Cut The Gutters

Use a measuring tape to mark off the desired length of your gutter and mark it off. Be sure to mark it all the way around the outside of the gutter.

Next, cut it off to the right length. There are several ways to go about accomplishing this, but I recommend a good pair of tin snips. Using a saw can be done, but the end result will not be pretty. Wear gloves when working with aluminum gutters because of very sharp edges.

Attach The Guttering

Now it's time to attach the gutter to your eaves. For this you will use hanging brackets that hold up the rain gutter and screw into the fascia board on the roof.

When attaching the brackets it is recommended to space them out 24 "through the length of your gutter and 6" from the ends.


The final piece on how to install rain gutters will be your downspout. You will need to install a sleeve section to the end of the gutter that will also attach to the downspout.

Take the sleeve and draw an outline around it in your gutter. Next, cut out the hole using a drill to cut out an opening and then a jigsaw to cut out the hole. Take a tube of silicone and seal all the edges around the opening to prevent water leaks.

Screw the pieces together with metal screws and cut the downspout to size. Put on the end caps and seal them with your silicone. You also want to do this in any seams as well.

You can check for leaks by using a water hose and squirting water on your roof.

This was only a brief overview on how to install a rain gutter, but it should give you the help you need to make this task a little more manageable. It's really not as hard as it may look to install your own gutters and downspouts.

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You and Your Violin Bow – It's Just Elementary Physics

You know that, as your violin skills and passion grow, your violin bow should "grow" along with them. You bought your first bow mostly for durability-mistake-proofing and protection against accidents. If your teacher and teachers counseled you wisely, you probably bought an all-synthetic bow for your first instruction and initiation into the subtleties and intricacies of the violin. If they continue to counsel you wisely, your teacher and tutors told you to keep that very first bow as a back-up; you will value your first bow's super-powers when your better bow breaks in the middle of a big performance.

You and your bow evolve together

To some extent, your violin bow will change size and weight according to your proportions; when you grow up, you will need a big boys' bow. Most of all, though, the materials and construction will change, keeping pace with your power and speed, adapting to your style of play. Of course, the bow is only as good as the player who draws it across the violin strings. But, as you perfect your skills and develop your repertoire, growing more confident and aggressive, a truly fine bow will make your ordinary, every day play sound considerably better. Your last and favorite bow will help you show just how good you really are.

An aesthetic and environmental debate currently rages among professional violinists. Synthetic carbon-graphite bows have become sophisticated enough to rival the sound of all-natural bows; and because the best all-natural elements in an old-fashioned bow come from the delicate Amazon rain forest, synthetic-bow advocates insist man-made sticks represent the wisest artistic choice and the most responsible let's-go-green decision. As you take a stand in this debate, be careful not to think too much; focus, instead, on feeling. Searching and shopping for your ideal bow, make your bowing arm and fingers extra sensitive, because you will know your ideal choice the moment you feel it. Synthetic or natural, you simply will feel it, and it will feel perfect-like you and the bow were made for one another.

Rosin remains your very best friend.

From the very first moment you pick-up your very first bow, you will understand how rosin is your friend. Watch a pitcher on the mound: he steps off the rubber, walks to the back of the mound, picks-up the porous little bag, and profusely roins his pitching hand. No rosin, no curve ball. Watch an Olympic gymnast on the uneven parallel bars: even the best leotard looks a little more competitive covered with rosin. No rosin, no catch on the bar-to-bar double-twisting somersaults. Same with a professional billiards player; You get the idea.

Hypothetically, you might apply too much rosin to your bow. In the real world, the experts agree you can not rosin your bow too much. Even with your very best, most sophisticated and high-tech bow, liberal applications of rosin will improve its performance and your own.

It's all about physics, you know.

Your last and favorite violin bow, properly roosed and ready to go, has two special properties to optimize your sound. Both properties, however, derive from one basic principle-friction. Your bow draws sound from your violin by creating friction against the strings; the greater the friction, the better the tone. Although you probably did not think about it at the time, you learned this essential principle the very first time you picked up and played with your instrument: the harder you pressed the bow against the strings, the more voluble its tone became. Greater friction. The further down the bow you play the strings, the stronger your tone becomes. More weight and slightly larger string-surface area create more friction; and larger size gives more amplitude-bigger notes.

When you invest in a really good bow, and when you rosin the fine bow's strings to perfection, you generate optimal friction. Optimal friction equals fine tone equals great play. Now, really, how hard can that be?

How to Maintain Gas Fireplaces

Gas fireplaces with gas logs require little cleaning or maintenance throughout the year. Because they do not use wood, there are no ashes, partly burned logs, or soot to deal with. They do require some annual maintenance however, as well as periodic professional maintenance.

Annual Maintenance for Gas Fireplaces

Each year, you should perform these simple steps to clean your gas fireplace and ensure that it's working properly. You can hire a professional to do it, or you can do it yourself. If you have a rented gas fireplace, there is slightly more maintenance, but it's still manageable.

1. Turn off the gas valve, pilot light, and electrical igniter.

2. Remove the gas fireplace insert and take it outside.

3. Dust off the insert. Visually check it for cracks. Most inserts are concrete, so you should not see cracks, but call a professional if you spot any or see excessive wear around the gas release valves.

4. Dust and vacuum the fire box.

5. Remove the glass doors. Clean them with vinegar and water or glass cleaner. If the doors have developed a white film or fog, buy a special glass door cleaner to remove it.

6. Inspect the lines and valves for cracks and wear. Make sure all the connections are tight.

7. Reassemble the fireplace. Relight the pilot and perform a 30-minute test burn to ensure all parts are working properly.

Professional Maintenance for Gas Fireplaces

In addition to the annual maintenance you can perform yourself, you should have your gas fireplace inspected by a professional periodically. Manufacturers recommend once a year, but every two to three years should be sufficient without you use the fireplace heavily.

At the visit, the technician will perform all of the above maintenance. He'll also check the pilot and electrical igniter, valve pressure, log position, electrical connections, and heat exchange. In addition, he'll test for gas leaks, inspect the chimney for cracks, and inspect the flue for rust caused by moisture in the gas.

If necessary, the technician will replace parts, replace the embers that wear out faster than the logs, and repaint the interior to correct any heat-induced discoloration.

Although gas fireplaces require less maintenance than wood-burning fireplaces, they're not maintenance-free. Perform these checks periodically and schedule periodic service visits to ensure your safety and the proper function of your fireplace.

Time And Motion Studies Or Predetermined Times – Is One More Trusted Than The Other?

Time and motion study is a business efficiency technique combining the Time Study work of Frederick Winslow Taylor with the Motion Study work of Frank and Lillian Gilbreth. The best known experiment involved bricklaying. Through carefully analyzing a bricklayer's job, Frank Gilbreth reduced the number of motions in laying a brick from 18 to 6. Thereafter the bricklayer both increased productivity and decreased fatigue.

A predetermined motion time system (PMTS) is frequently used to set labor rates in industry by calculating the amount of time required to perform specific tasks. The first such system is known as Methods Time Measurement (MTM) released in 1948 and today existing in three variants, commonly known as MTM-1, MTM-2, and MTM-3. Another popular PMTS is the Maynard Operation Sequence Technique (MOST), which was first released in 1972.

Most predetermined motion time systems use time measurement units (TMU) instead of seconds for measuring time. One TMU is defined to be 0.00001 hours or 0.036 seconds These smaller units allow for more accurate calculations without the use of decimals.

The choice of which variation of a certain PMTS to use relations on the need for accuracy versus the need for quick analysis, as well as the length of the operation, the distinctions involved in the operation, and the repetitiveness of the operation. Longer operations often take place on a larger scale, and tend to be less repetitive. For longer, less repetitive operations, the need for a more detailed PTS is not required as much as the need for a greater based PTS such as MTM-3 or MOST.

Most production workers and a great deal of their supervisors trust a traditional stop watch time study over a PTS because it is a method they understand. The PTS is more accurate and it takes out all the calls calls of performance rating. Performance rating has to be learned through education and experience were as with PTS as long as you have the method and layout of the production work area development and modifications can be made from the desk top. Performance rating is not necessary because the PTS has the task times already leveled. Leaving a quicker / unjudgmental response time for delivering piece standards.

The downside to standard development through time studies is the amount of time to gather a wide range of operator work pace and level of experience. So the answer comes down to, time studies although are more trusted by the production floor but predetermined time systems are more accurate, does not contain judicial performance rating and provide a fast response time.

Famous Interior Designers Series – Tara Bernard

British architect Tara Bernard is one of the famous award winning interior designers. She specializes in creating excellent interior decors individually to varying requirements of clients. Tara Bernard was the daughter of a British real estate magnate and was married to James Archer, the son of writer and politician Jeffrey Archer. Tara Bernard's design concepts involve a mix of the new and age-old traditions in interior decoration and design.

Bernard strictly adopts a professional approach in all her interior décor appointments. This involves her deep understanding of the expectations of various clients. Once Bernard gets a clear view of her customer's needs, she can provide them with various décor options, some of them being quite unimaginable to her clients. She specializes in providing interior designs qualified to the different situations and varying budgets of the customer.

Tara Bernard's style also incorporates effective space management in homes, combined with better designs, and this successful combination ensures that every project undertaken by Bernard helps in enabling homes to sport a refreshingly good look. She often tallies the cost of various materials used in interiors to ensure that the project always stays within the proposed budgets.

In order to give clients an idea of ​​various design methodologies, Tara Bernard often appears in various television shows and gives her viewers a thorough explanation of the steps involved in her design processes. She made her debut in television with the design show named Wow Factor (UKTV Style). In her shows, Bernard gives her users simple steps and hints that they can work out for decorating their own interiors. She is known for giving her clients the chance to openly express their ideas and tastes.

In interior design projects, the initial routine adopted by her is on reaching a consensus on the model of design to be implemented. For this, Tara Bernard gives the opportunity for her clients to have a healthy involvement during the planning process itself so that on seeing the final design, her clients are often satisfied and always give positive reviews. Once Bernard and her design team got stuck on implementing a specific design, the work begins with the construction team laying floors and painting walls. Then the second stage involves finding the fitted furniture, fixtures and finishing pieces for the interior to transform it to a vivid atmosphere. Her unique style also allows homeowners to accompany her on shopping sprees in order to find the matching interior product for the design of their interiors. The excitation her clients receive from her contemporary style of design is often very high.

Understanding Retinal Detachment

Bothered by the sudden appearance of floaters? Troubled by hazy vision? Check with your doctor fast. You could be suffering from a retinal detachment that can make you blind!

The retina is a thin membrane attached to the back of the eye. It carries specialized sense receptors that make vision possible. These retinal cells are known as rods (which register black and white only) and cones (which react to color). A person has about 10 million cones and 100 million rods on the retina of each eye.

To work properly, the retina gets oxygen and nutrients from under blood vessels. If it separates from this layer of blood vessels, the problem is called a retinal detachment.

Retinal detachment affects 20,000 people annually in the United States alone. It may follow an injury to the eye, cataract surgery or severe nearsightedness. More men than women develop this condition and the risk increases in people with tumors of the eye and hyper¬tension. A genetic factor may also be involved as the condition tends to run in families.

"Retinal detachment is a medical emergency, and time is critical." "Without the detached retina is promptly surgically reattached, this condition can cause permanent loss of vision in the affected eye," according to the Mayo Clinic.

However, symptoms almost always appear before the retina detaches. As the vitreous fluid (the jellylike substance inside the eyeball) shrinks and sags, it may tug on the retina, producing the sensation of flashing lights. is strong enough and causes a retinal tear, small blood vessels will be damaged, allowing blood to see into the vitreous and causing hazy vision and the sudden appearance of new floaters (dark or light spots or specks or lines in the field of vision) "said Dr. David E. Larson, editor-in-chief of the "Mayo Clinic Family Health Book."

Whether or not surgery will help depends on the patient's case. If the retina is merely torn but has not yet been detracted from underlying blood vessels, the physician can repair the damage by laser treatment (photocoagulation) or cryopexy (in which acute cold is applied to form a scar and hold the retina in place). Both can be done on an outpatient basis.

Surgery is necessary if the retina is washed but this should be done quickly since rods and cones die if they are separated from their source of nourishment for a long time. Once this happens, the patient becomes blind and nothing can restore his or her vision.

"Doctors commonly use one of three surgical procedures to repair a retinal detachment. Some of these procedures are done in conjunction with photocoagulation or cryopexy. The purpose of these treatments is to close any retinal holes or tears and to reduce the tug on the retina from a shrinking vitreous. The type, size and location of any retinal detachment will determine which procedure your eye surgeon recommends. In general, these surgeries can successfully treat more than 90 percent of cases of retinal detachment, although a second treatment is sometimes necessary, concluded the Mayo Clinic.

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Alternative Mass Loaded Vinyl Installations for Soundproofing

There is more than one method for installing mass loaded vinyl to obtain maximum effect. The standard of the industry is to install the MLV directly to the stud or joist framing using an industrial stapler or heavy-duty roofing nails that have the large plastic heads. This method is known as the membrane or septum method. The MLV works well when placed on a wall or ceiling in a membrane fashion, however it can also be sandwiched between 2 layers of drywall or other type of wallboard. The jury is still out on what thicknesses of drywall is best. For better frequency diffusion, it is best to use a layer of 5/8″ drywall then the MLV as a septum (a sandwich) and then add a layer of ½” drywall or Homasote. The dissimilar materials do help in the soundproofing effort especially when we are looking to get every STC point we can get with as little effort as possible.

There is not a lot of information on the Web in regards to alternate methods of mass loaded vinyl installation, hopefully we will be able to explore this here.

If you are constructing walls using the staggered stud method, it would be beneficial to actually weave the vinyl in an out of the staggered stud assembly itself. The above picture gives you a rough idea of how this would look. The key to weaving MLV (or any barrier material) is to seal the vinyl as best as possible. In the case of a horizontal weave (most common weave) it is best to overlap the seams by at least 1″ and seal that overlap with acoustical caulking as well as a quality seam tape. The weaving of MLV also aids in the defusing of sound waves. This works much like the dissimilar materials except “turbo charges it”.

You can also use the weave on a standard stud wall provided there is no drywall installed on either side of the studs. (just open studs) This weaving method can be foiled by stud cross members, so it is best to have only vertically installed studs if you are planning to do the weave. If you weave the MLV on a normally studded wall, there may be problems with the drywall sitting level on the studs. If your studs are 16″ on center, then every other stud will have 1/8″ of increased width compared to the studs that don’t have the MLV weaved a top of them. To keep the drywall even on both sides, a sound isolation tape can be adhered to every other stud that that is not covered with the weaved MLV this will make all of the stud surfaces flat and even and the drywall will rest evenly on the studs.

From the feedback of our contractors in the field, we have discovered that the more a wood structure is dampened, the better the soundproofing will be in a wall or ceiling assembly. This is especially true for impact noise from above. There are many ways to dampen a wood frame assembly and some are more effective than others. Some contractors have used blown in cellulose in order to dampen the joist or stud structures, but cellulose has no mass and though it will help to a degree, it is much less effective than using blown in closed cell foam, or my favorite (which requires some ceiling demo) is to line the cavity areas between studs and joists with a closed cell vinyl nitrile foam mat (America Mat is a great choice) for maximum dampening. The foam mat would be glued to the studs and the wallboard in the stud cavities (provided you have drywall on one side of the wall only). This insures that the wooden structure is completely dampened and if sealed properly will offer extra soundproofing as a result of sealing those cavities. Sealed dead air space is God’s natural soundproofing method, as I like to call it. I am sure you have read many of the analogies regarding sealed dead air. If you were able to seal the dead air space and actually create a vacuum in that space, you’d be amazed at the amount of sound transmission that would be blocked.

I hope this little narrative helps you especially if you are doing new construction for a home theater, or music sound studio in your home. Thanks for reading and learning together. This is Dr. Bob…..Out!!!!!!