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Inspirational tips on how to improve your home.

Eco-Friendly Pools

  • Posted: Nov 04, 2019
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Eco-Friendly Pools

Pools are a luxury, especially in times when water is scarce. If you are considering building a new pool this summer you have to think of ways to make your pool more sustainable. From natural and solar-heated pools to moss filters or pool sharing – there are many sustainable ways to enjoy your pool this summer.

According to Water Wise, there are about 168 000 pools in South Africa. Residential pools can hold anything from 20 000 to 80 000 litres of water. The average evaporation rate in summer is between 6mm and 8 mm a day. That is 2600 litres of evaporated water every month, and 31 200 litres of evaporated water every year. That’s 208, 10-minute showers a year.

Whether you are building a new pool or if you already have one, these tips can help you be more water-wise, making your pool more eco-friendly.

Pool Covers

Something as simple as a pool cover can reduce water evaporation by 97%. This also saves you money. If you’re building a new pool consider building it in a partly shaded area and invest in a good pool cover. In countries like Namibia and Australia, the use of pool covers are very common.

Natural Pools

By far the smartest way to build your pool. Natural pools are chemical-free and affordable. In a natural pool gravel and clay are used instead of concrete and fiberglass. Aquatic plants replace chlorine and mechanical filtering systems. These plants also have natural purification processes that support filtration. Beneficial bacteria provide a natural habitat for aquatic life that enrich the pool with oxygen.

Moss Filters

Moss-filtered pools reduce the need for chemicals because they inhibit the growth of microorganisms. This reduces water consumption, especially during “backwashing” as there is less frequent need to send water to waste with a moss filter. 

Shared Pools

The idea of a shared pool might be new to you. But in many neighbourhoods around the world, families are sharing their pools with other families and by doing so, also share the costs of the upkeep of the pool. 

Solar Heating 

Having a warm pool all year round doesn’t have to be expensive at all. You can significantly reduce swimming pool heating costs with a solar pool heater. The great thing about solar heaters is that they have a low operating cost and are considered a cost-effective use of solar energy all around the world.

You can do your part for the environment by incorporating these eco-friendly ideas and advice at your home pool. Make sure you get the most out of your pool this summer by sticking with HOMEMAKERS.

Image credit: BIOTOP

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African Inspired Décor

  • Posted: Oct 25, 2019
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African Inspired Décor

Africa is trending. We are in the spotlight for everything from fashion and film to visual arts and design. Creating a space in your home that is inspired by the African aesthetic is a great idea if you’re keeping up with décor trends. African décor and design elements can give your home a warm, sophisticated feel. 

Decorative tribal elements are easy to achieve and never go out of style. Incorporating raw elements and hand-crafted items like woven baskets and mats are a good start. We love bright beadwork, monochromatic prints and well thought out colour schemes to create African ambiance in your home or office. Here are a few elements you can include to get the perfect look.

Raw Materials

Raw wood, leather, and stone are three key elements to incorporate into your African inspired space. It gives a sense of earthiness and keep in mind that earthy colours can be found in metals like gold, bronze and even silver.

Tapestry Play 

African skins are not the only way to bring an eclectic look into your space. Although they still work well, consider making use of beautifully designed wall tapestries or carpets. Wall tapestries are great because unlike wall art, you do not have to frame it to make it look stylish.

Bright Accents 

Bright colours may be a given when creating an African inspired room, but balance is key. Consider using monochromatic items in your furniture and artworks and add bright accents with artisanal crafts, scatter cushions and lampshades or vice versa.

Indoor Plants 

Surrounding yourself with typically African greenery is a sure way to create the illusion of being outdoors. Africa is all about spending time outdoors and taking in the fresh air and warm sun. Recreate this feeling inside by incorporating indigenous house plants. 

Handmade Goodies 

Handmade is usually local and local is lekker. We have so many creative artisans in South Africa that it’s a must to support local artists. Include handmade art or crafts to bring subtle flair to your space. Sometimes it’s the small things that put the big picture into perspective.

African inspired décor is not just for upmarket guest houses and game lodges anymore. Balancing modernity and authentic African design is easier than ever because there’s so much to choose from right here on our doorstep. The trend has taken over the world, but unlike other continents, we do not have to search far and wide to find exclusive African pieces. Enjoy Africa in Africa.

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Glass Sliding Doors

  • Posted: Oct 21, 2019
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Glass Sliding Doors

Glass sliding doors are a beautiful addition to any house. They allow natural light to break through your home, brightening up any dark rooms or corners. They also allow for easier accessibility between the in and outdoors. Here are our top reasons to consider modern, glass sliding doors in your home.

Natural Light

The extra-large glass panes in sliding doors run from the top to the bottom of each door panel. This allows your chosen design to bring as much natural light as possible into your home. This ensures a well-lit home during the day, which is energy-efficient and cost-effective.

Accessibility

Accessibility is a big deal in large family homes. You want family members to be able to move between indoor and outdoor spaces easily and safely. Glass sliding doors are the perfect fit if your family spends equal amounts of time both inside and outside.

Air Circulation

Effective air circulation and airflow are really important factors in your home. Strategically installing a large sliding door at one end of your house can make a big difference. By letting in large amounts of fresh air into your home, you improve overall air quality. 

Great Views

Designing or revamping your home with large sliding doors in mind gives the impression that the inside and outside worlds merge seamlessly. It allows you to make your outdoor living spaces an integral part of indoor living instead of separating the two. Looking out at your lovely summer garden or seeing the city from your balcony makes a world of difference in everyday living.

If your plan is to find a way to increase light exposure and energy-efficiency into your home, considering a glass sliding door might be your best bet.  Looking for more inspiration about large doors and windows? Read our article on aluminium doors and windows here.

Find vetted experts to help you make your dream home a reality with HOMEMAKERS. 

 

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