How to Find Perfect Infant Crib Bedding For Your Heirloom Cradle (And Make Sure It’s Safe)

You’re a lover of all things vintage. You pride yourself on thrift store finds. Not only this, but you get involved. You DIY. If a dress is the wrong size, you’ll sew a few seams, shorten the skirt. If a chair needs re-upholstering, you’re just the girl for the job.

Then along comes baby. Well, the promise of baby. The plus sign on that little stick.

Of course you visit your parents and pull down all your own baby gear from the attic. Oh, how sweet! you cry, over and over, sorting through tiny clothes and ragged stuffed animals.

And then–you gasp–there it is! The cradle. The one your grandfather carved by hand. Your father slept in it, you slept in it, and it’s been waiting here for some three decades, just waiting for you to retrieve it, line it with the perfect infant crib bedding, and rock it gently while you sing soft lullabyes to your own little darling.

The thing is, as soon as you discovered baby on board, you developed a new passion for all things CLEAN AND SAFE. You can scrub the cradle down, but is it…safe?

You slept in it, and you’re still here, so probably. But then again, you can remember a family road trip from Connecticut to California where you bopped around the trunk of the family Volvo, nary a seatbelt in sight. Thank the angels of the highway you survived just fine, but times have changed. With knowledge comes responsibility, or something like that.

Plus, the old sheets are mildewed, and that’s just not okay.

Okay, safety first.

How To Make Sure The Crib Your Grandfather Made Is Safe For Your Baby

1. How’s the base? Is it wide and solid? A wide and sturdy base allows you to rock the cradle without it tipping over.

2. If there are slats, how far apart are they? They should be no more than 2 3/8 inches apart.

3. Any rough spots or splinters? Exposed hardware? Your hand should be able to rub over every inch comfortably.

4. If there are any latches or locks, make sure they’re secure.

If you’re satisfied that grandpa’s handiwork passes the test, wonderful! If not, there are a number of gorgeous, old-style cribs on the market today. You might not run into them in your average baby furniture store, but there are excellent online sources with a wide variety to choose from.

Next stop, infant crib bedding.

1. It’s very important for the mattress to be a tight fit. There should be no room between the mattress and the cradle floor or walls. Measure your crib. You might find the right size mattress online. You might have to have one specially made. Or, DIY girl, maybe you can size one on your own.

2. Infant crib bedding is not the same as grown-up bedding. You need a mattress pad (to guard against leaky diapers!), a fitted sheet that can be secured snugly, and something to keep your baby warm. Babies can be hurt by a tangle of sheets or blankets, so you want bedding that can stay snug around baby–like swaddling blankets, or a sleeper that zips or fastens closed.

There are so many adorable infant bedding sets on the market. This is something you’ll want to buy new, most likely, rather than vintage. Look for super soft cottons. Our advice is to find organic cotton. Combined with the heirloom cradle, it’s the perfect blend of appreciating the past and being mindful of the future.

You can read the Best Garden Furniture Sets reviews here.

What’s Bugging You? Bed Bugs – What You Should Know

Bedbugs are a very old problem. It was first mentioned in Medieval European texts dating back to the time of Aristotle. Subsequent the improvement in hygiene and use of DDT, it was essentially eliminated in the US after WWII. However, it persisted in many other regions of the world and over the last couple years, it is making a strong comeback. It has been found all over the US and recently in areas of New Jersey and New York. Proposed reasons for the resurgence is increased international travel, immigration, use of used furniture and changes in pest control measures. In most cases, bed bugs are transported from infested areas to non-infested areas. They can cling onto someone’s clothing, or crawl into luggage, furniture or bedding that is then brought into homes.

What are they? Bedbugs are red-brown wingless insects that can grow to 1/4 inch long. They are visible to the naked eye and can be size of a small lentil or apple seed. Bedbugs are parasites which feed on the blood of humans or animals. They are nocturnal and are most active 1 hour prior to dawn. They are attracted by warmth and carbon dioxide, but not to dirt. Usually they seek food every 5-10 days, but can live up to 18 months without feeding. Bites are usually on any exposed area of skin and usually are multiple in a certain area. As a result, the bites are usually in clusters.

In general, bedbug bites do not transmit blood borne disease, and don’t carry any diseases. As a result of the allergic reaction to the bedbugs’ saliva, people bitten by bedbugs will have redness, swelling and itching. The swelling and redness usually lasts 4 days. Not all people are allergic. Sometimes, the bites may lead to secondary skin infections, most often from scratching. Usually topical ointments such as calamine, aloe, benadryl creams or hydrocortisone (only if bite not infected) will relieve the itching and help with the swelling. If the possibility of infection is present, please consult your doctor.

Like mentioned previously, bedbugs are not attracted to dirt. However, any cluttered and dirty areas allow bedbugs to hide. If one suspects a bedbug infestation, it is best to check in every nook and cranny. They tend to hide in dark places such as any tiny crevice, mattress seams/interiors, bed frame, box spring, carpeting, baseboards and any nearby furniture. They care travel up to 100 feet to feed. So, make sure you check every room aside from the bedroom. A clue to where they may reside is finding black or reddish stains from the bedbugs’ fecal matter on a surface.

Getting rid of bedbugs is an enormous undertaking. It is essential to first find out where they hide. It is important to remove all clutter. All surfaces should be scrubbed to remove eggs and a powerful vacuum should be used to remove bugs from cracks and crevices. Bed frames should be dismantled and drawers removed and cleaned. All holes around wires and pipes should be caulked and sealed. Anything that can’t be cleansed such as box spring, mattress, etc should be sealed in a vacuum bag. Remember, these insects can survive up to 18 months without feeding, so these insects have to be sealed for a long time. Furniture that is to be thrown out (because it cannot be cleaned or not wanted) should be sealed it in a plastic bag, so any possible bedbugs residing there won’t find their way to someone else’s home. All clothes and bed sheets should be laundered in hot water. After all is said and done, as a precaution, be very careful inspecting any old items you are bringing to your house. Bedbugs are not a neighbor anyone would like to have.

The following are suggestions from the New Jersey Department of Health and Human Services regarding insecticides:

“The NJDHSS recommends that homeowners hire a pest control professional licensed by the NJDEP to evaluate what type of pest is present, and to exterminate them. Pesticide products labeled for bed bugs may be available at drug, hardware or home improvement stores that adults can apply themselves. If you choose to use a pesticide, or if a licensed exterminator suggests you use one, follow these precautions:

• Only use pesticides clearly labeled as intended for bed bug extermination. Never use a cockroach spray, ant spray, or any other pesticide that does not list bed bugs on the label for bed bug extermination.
• Make sure you read, understand and follow the instructions on the pesticide’s label.
• Never spray pesticides on mattresses or sofas, or in areas where children are present.
• Never purchase or use a product without a manufacturer’s label and never buy pesticides from street vendors. Use insecticides to get rid of bed bugs that are hiding in walls and other large objects. (Choose insecticides with “pyrethrins” as an active ingredient on the label. Only use insecticides labeled for household use because some insecticides can damage or stain your furniture, wallpaper, etc. Use care when applying insecticides, especially around children, the elderly, immuno-compromised people, and anyone else who may be sensitive to insecticides. Always follow label directions carefully.)”

The Convenience of Ready to Assemble Furniture

Many new homeowners and apartment dwellers come across the problem of needing furniture but can’t afford anything without skipping out on their mortgage payments. While that’s not a recommended route, there are other options you can consider before resorting to cardboard boxes and bean bags.

My suggestion is to start looking at the many possibilities that ready to assemble (RTA) furniture has to offer. Affordable and easy to assemble, hence the name, RTA furniture features a wide variety of styles and offers the financial flexibility that most homeowners wouldn’t be able to find with traditional or high end furniture.

Some consumers believe that since RTA furniture is affordable it must mean that the quality is of a lower standard. Not necessarily, if you consider the fact that breaking a high end dining table in half takes the same amount of effort for breaking an RTA dining table the same way. Assuming you wouldn’t go out of the way to do that, RTA furniture is indeed quite durable. Especially popular with the do-it-yourself crowd, assembling these pieces of furniture can be fun and oftentimes easy. Some pieces don’t require hardware, but for the latter hardware and tools are usually included. However there are some cases where you’ll be missing a screw or bolt here and there, in which case a quick call or stop to your local hardware store is in order.

Another great benefit from purchasing RTA furniture is that it’s easy to transport, reassemble and disassemble when needed. Because it’s ready to assemble whenever you’re ready, all your furniture pieces can be laid down flat, compared to lugging around larger pieces of furniture around in a truck or moving van where it can get easily damaged. Which brings up another good point: if you intend to order RTA furniture online, you won’t have to worry too much about any shipping damages because your furniture will be shipped to you knocked down in a flat case.

Home Improvement Tips Using Modern Furniture Hardware

While choosing furniture hardware for refurnishing your house, it is more that obvious that a person can get confused. Besides, remodeling a home is an expensive affair as well, especially if you are planning to integrate a new design or style into the interior of the abode. But however, to rescue you from all these spendings there are various ways to cut down on your home improvement expenditures. Though a new piece of furniture frames and headboards will be instrumental in giving your house a new look.

The Initial Step
Designing a well placed furniture plan is essential if you do not want to go wrong anywhere and want to meet your comfort as well as needs. You should also be clear about the style of the furniture that will best suit your room.

Replace Bulky Items And Save Space
This is the foremost step when remodeling your house. Replace bulky ancient furniture with streamlines modern furnishings that acquire less space are are easy to manage. Old furniture use up a lot of space and if your house is small then choose from a wide range multi purpose furniture. For example, use the Ottoman (storage + seat/foot rest) or Sofa bed that can perform the task of both sofa and bed. A modern style is more practical as they tend to be smaller and clean cut edges which do not hang out much and thus cuts down on the space they take up. Go for a bed that has storage compartments and brackets, so that there is more space for better use of wardrobe and drawer.

Plan Before Purchasing
There is no dearth in the furniture hardware industry for furniture supplies, so do not shop in a haste. If you have made up your mind to replace those big antique furnishings with latest sofa that has exquisite furniture legs, then be prepared to hover a little longer before you actually find the best piece. Keep in mind the measurement factor so that the furniture hardware compliments your room. Get a tape measure and start measuring the dimensions of the room so that you will know what size will best fit in it.

Consider the Design
This is also an important factor before purchasing the furniture hardware for your home. Modern furniture differs in the designs as per the taste of their designer. Some of the furniture that have modern tags might have a vintage look. So be clear about the design that will suit your home the most.

Cut Cost By Window Shopping
This is a must before you actually purchase the most coveted furniture piece. Make sure you do a window shopping of all the furniture outlets to have a feel of all the modern furniture available in the furniture hardware industry. Compare the prices of the same stuffs to make this activity cost effective. Also you can wait for the furniture shops and department stores in your area to go on sale or to put huge discounts on their furnishings before you start buying one for your very own.

How To Build A Bunk Bed That Won’t Collapse

Are you thinking about building bunk beds for your family or friends? The task can be an intimidating initial thought, especially when the vision of a collapsed bunk bed comes to mind.

The truth is, most lofts aren’t as safe as they should be. Here’s an interesting fact for you…

Over 36,000 people are admitted to hospitals because of bunk bed related injuries. Most of these injures could have easily been prevented if a few simple steps were taken.

If you don’t want your bed to come crashing down in the middle of the night there are a few things you must do (I’ll get to the specifics in a minute).

But first, you must commit yourself to making something that will safely support the people that will be sleeping on it. If you know that heavier individuals will be using the beds you must be extra cautious when building your loft bed.

So here’s a few things you must consider before you set out and build your very own bed.

1.) Make sure you are using high quality, sturdy wood. Don’t use old, warped wood or wood that isn’t inherently strong. Selecting the wrong wood is one of the major reasons bunk beds collapse.

2.) Use proper hardware and construction techniques. A detailed bunk bed plan will give you the exact step by step instructions you need to create a safe bunk bed. Make sure to select a high quality “blueprint” for your bunk building expedition. If you don’t have experience with any type of construction, find someone that can help you with the process.

3.) Begin with an end in mind. Know how you want your bed to look before you begin. There are some great plans on the market that will give you several different designs, and complete step by step directions (some even have video!) to guide your project to completion, in the safest and most efficient way.

There are many other important things to consider before you build your lofted bed. If you’re at all worried about a bed collapsing then it is important that you get a complete education on the topic. Unlike many other pieces of furnitures, lofted beds are incredibly dangerous if not constructed properly.

Just remember over 36,000 people are admitted to the hospital every single year because of bunk bed related injuries. Most wouldn’t have happened if the DIY builder or manufacturer took the necessary time to build a sound piece of furniture.