Five Easy Ways to Organize Your Kitchen

Preparing meals for your family is much more enjoyable when you do it in a well-planned kitchen. Whether you have a small galley style or a large space that promotes gathering, kitchens always benefit from organization and thought.

Here are five things to keep in mind when you organize yours:

 

Start with a clean slate. Empty all of your cabinets and put everything on your countertop or table. You’ll probably be surprised at how much stuff is stored behind doors and drawers. When you remove items, look for things that are broken, don’t belong in the kitchen or that are duplicates. You can sort out these items right away to make room for what you need.

Group like items. When organizing your kitchen, make it easy to find things or complete a task by grouping like items. Put all of your bake ware in one cabinet, for example. Keep spices together. And group holiday or seasonal items that are used less often. During the grouping process, streamline your belongings even further by getting rid of things you no longer use or need.

 

Don’t forget about vertical space. If cabinet space is at a premium, think outside the “box” and consider hanging items. You can place hooks underneath cabinets to hold mugs. Use a bar that allows you to hang a stemware. Consider installing a pot rack over a kitchen island. And add portable storage if you have wall space, such as free-standing shelving or bins that attach to the wall.

Decide where everything goes. Now it’s time to put things away; decide which cabinets and drawers make the most sense. Pots and pans should be kept close to the stove. Utensils can be put in the drawer nearest to the prep area. Put mugs near your coffee station. Thinking through your organization helps you streamline your cooking process.

 

Consider hidden storage options. Finally, look for double duty furnishings that provide storage. You can find tables that include shelving in the base that can be used to store seasonal items. Some bench seating opens to offer storage that can hold linens or even pantry food item overflow if you like to stock up. Taking advantage of every nook and cranny will help you get the most out of your kitchen.


How to Buy Sheets

You spend a third of your life in bed. A good mattress lays the foundation for a good night’s sleep, and great sheets help you drift off in luxury. But with a variety of sizes, materials and thread counts, choosing the right linens can keep you up at night.

Don’t lose sleep over making the right choice. Here are three simple things to consider:

How to Buy Sheets

1. Thread count. A sheet’s thread count is determined by the number of threads contained in one square inch of the fabric. While a thread count of 200 is considered acceptable, good-quality sheets should have a thread count of at least 300, which will provide a more comfortable sleep. Often, the higher the thread count, the softer and more durable the sheets will be, but the quality of the material also matters. For example, a lower-thread-count sheet made of Pima cotton will feel softer than a high-thread-count sheet made from a lesser quality cotton. The bottom line: Consider the thread count, but be sure to feel the fabric.

2. Material. At Art Van Furniture, we carry sheets in three materials: cotton, bamboo/cotton blend and microfiber. Which is right for you depends on how you like to sleep.

 

If you like your sheets crisp, cool and soft, cotton is your best choice. Cotton is the most popular fabric for sheets for several reasons. First, it’s breathable. Cotton traps heat during cold months and lets cool air pass through in summer. Cotton is also durable, which means your sheets will wash up well. And cotton is naturally stain resistant. The only downside is that cotton is most likely to shrink and wrinkle.

 

Bamboo blends have become more popular in recent years. They are created with a mixture of 70% bamboo and 30% cotton, and are incredibly soft. Bamboo is a sustainable material, which makes them environmentally friendly. Bamboo is naturally bacteria and allergy resistant. This fiber also wicks moisture, so it’s a good choice during the summer months. Bamboo sheets are among the more expensive options, however, they are very durable, which means your investment should last for years.

Microfiber Sheets

The final choice is microfiber sheets, made of extremely fine fibers of polyester. They’re very soft and will resist pilling. However, microfiber is less breathable than cotton or bamboo. They would be a good choice during the winter when retaining heat would be welcome, but they might not be the best choice for summer nights or for those with sensitive skin.

3. Fit. Of course, sheets come in sizes to match your mattress, such as Twin, Full, Queen and King, but before you bring a set home, make sure you measure your mattress to know if your Twin is an Extra Long Twin or if your King is California King. You should also check the depth of your mattress to ensure a proper fit for your fitted sheet. Simply measure the depth of the mattress and then choose a pocket depth that offers at least two inches more. This ensures enough fabric for tucking under the corners, and allows room for shrinkage in the wash.


Pillow Talk: How To Choose the Right Sleep Pillow

A good night’s sleep rests on the right pillow. A pillow has a huge impact on the quality of your sleep. Not only does it support your head and neck, it helps align and maintain the curvature of your spine during sleep, so you have a restorative experience instead of one that causes further aches and pains.

The best pillow is not one size fits all. And if you don’t give much thought to where you lay your head, you should. According to Chris Schollenberger, director of PureSleep at Art Van Furniture, 30% of the comfort of your sleep will come from your pillow.

“A mattress should cradle your spine and the pillow is responsible for the neck up,” he says. “The goal is to have you lying in bed with the same posture you use when you stand. And for that reason, people should purchase their mattress and pillow together.”

The pillow that would be fitted for you depends upon your answer. Pillows come in different lofts, which are based on gaps presented. If you sleep on your side, you need a higher loft. If you sleep on your back, you require a lower loft. And stomach sleepers need pillows with the lowest loft. According to WebMD, 63% percent of Americans sleep on their side, 14% sleep on their back, and 16% on their stomach. Once you know your sleep position, you can choose the pillow that will provide proper support.

 

Side Sleeper

If you sleep on your side, you need a firm, full pillow that will fill the space between your ear and shoulder. Look for one that will maintain its shape to eliminate neck pain. Sleep experts say sleeping on your side provides the most comfortable position for your spine, and can help alleviate back pain.

 

Stomach Sleeper

If you’re a stomach sleeper experts say you might not even need a pillow for your head, but you can tuck one beneath your stomach to avoid lower back pain. Sleeping on your stomach causes strain on your lower back and has the potential for causing neck pain. Sleep experts do not recommend this position, but if this is the best way you can fall asleep, choose a thin, almost flat pillow.

 

Back Sleeper

If you sleep on your back, you need a thin pillow, too. Look for one with extra loft in the bottom third to provide cradling for your neck. You can also place a soft pillow under your knees to help maintain the natural curve of your spine.

 

For more pillow choices, visit Art Van Pure Sleep where you’ll learn about our complete sleep system that includes a mattress, foundation, mattress protector and pillow. Getting fitted to the right pillow could be the difference between tossing and turning and getting the best sleep!


Five Steps To Create An Organized Bedroom

 

The bedroom is often one of the last areas in your home that gets organized, but it should be the first. It’s where you start your day, so setting the stage for a streamlined morning can make the rest of your day better. What’s more, if your bedroom is filled with clutter, it’s going to be harder to end your day on a restful note.

Here are five things you can do to your bedroom to make it the peaceful retreat you deserve:

1. Start With Clothes

Chances are most of your bedroom clutter is from your clothes. If you find yourself not hanging up items, it may be because you have too much. Go on a ruthless wardrobe cleanse. Go through your clothes piece by piece, getting rid of anything that doesn’t fit or that you haven’t worn in the past few months.

2. Create a Self-Organizing Closet

Use an assembly-line mentality in your closet and you’ll put things away faster and get dressed quicker in the morning. Keep the items you put on first on the left, storing things in sequence as you work to the right. The end of the closet should hold accessories for the finish touch to your outfit.

 

3. Grab All Available Space

Use the space under your bed for hidden storage. Use cubbies, baskets, or bags to stash bed linens and other non-essentials, and then hide them away with a bed skirt.

 

4. Choose a Bed With Built-In Storage

If your room is tight on space, choose a bed that also offers storage in addition to slumber. You’ll find beds that have drawers built into the frame or beds that have a headboard. The more places you have to put things away, the better your chances of having a tidy and organized room.

 

5. Pick the Right Nightstand

Don’t let clutter pile up next to your bed. Determine your needs, then choose a nightstand that helps you accommodate them. Opt for shelves, drawers, or combination of both.

 


Pantone 2018 Color of the Year: Ultra Violet

The global color experts from Pantone have named the 2018 Color of the Year, and it’s a dramatic one. Ultra Violet “communicates originality, ingenuity, and visionary thinking that points us toward the future. Complex and contemplative, Ultra Violet suggests the mysteries of the cosmos, the intrigue of what lies ahead, and the discoveries beyond where we are now. The vast and limitless night sky is symbolic of what is possible and continues to inspire the desire to pursue a world beyond our own.”

 

Inspiration for this color comes from musical icons such as Prince, David Bowie, and Jimi Hendrix, who brought shades of Ultra Violet with their artistic expressions. In interiors, Pantone can “transform a room into one of extraordinary self-expression, or conversely its polish can tone down a room with subdued, modern pairings. Ultra Violet calls attention to a tufted couch, piece of art, or accent wall. As a color that can take you in so many directions, Ultra Violet makes a statement in any space, whether it’s one of tradition and elegance or unexpected boldness.”

 

Be on trend by incorporating one of these fun furnishings in Ultra Violet—they all ship for free!

 

Imagine a pop of Ultra Violet in your living room or bedroom with this fun accent chair.

 

Be on trend in your office with an Ultra Violet desk chair.

 

 

Add some energy to your bedroom with an Ultra Violet Comforter set.

 

Add a pop of Ultra Violet in any room with this colorful table lamp.