Posts Tagged“home”

If you haven’t noticed a trend of bright colors around the home, then flip through the most recent Solutions catalog. Something fun is happening in the kitchen and at Solutions: We’re welcoming a bright and cheery trend into our catalog pages. You’ll see bright, colorful and helpful kitchen gadgets.

To get to the bottom of what all the teal, yellow and magenta colored products are all about, I spoke with our Director of Merchandising about her inspiration.

Findings:  This new color trend is being created by a combination of forces—and interestingly enough, the economy has a lot to do with it. As the U.S. slowly gains faith in the economy, we are now starting to look for upbeat, fun colored accents around the home that can brighten the mood. At the same time, manufacturers are starting to take chances again. These two economic factors are met with a new material in the kitchen: Silicon.

Silicon kitchen tools are becoming more wide spread. Silicon as a material is also easily colored and produces vivid, bright finishes that hold their original color.

Another aspect to the bold colors in the marketplace are the products themselves. Since most appliances are basic black, white or silver, it can be fun to be adventurous with colors when it comes to cooking tools and gadgets. Anything that helps make cooking more fun and inviting is encouraged. And it doesn’t hurt to add bright colors in the kitchen while guests are helping or watching you cook. If you’re worried about shifting the entire color palette of your home, remember that these functional tools can be stored in cabinets and drawers and be brought out when they’re ready for use. So feel free to have fun with bright colors!

Finally, a slow growth in the natural food and garden movement has created a surge in kitchen gadgetry, to aid cooks in preparing and storing these foods.

The trend of brightly colored kitchen tools seems to be unraveled. People are looking for fun in the kitchen, manufacturers are taking more chances, and a new need for kitchen tools has created a fun and functional trend that Solutions is standing behind.

Check out our colorful selection of gadgets…it will put a smile on your face >



Amy, our merchant, is a pink flamingo “junkie” and can’t help but smile every time she sees her pink flock in the yard.

What can you do with your own party pack of flamingos? Here are 6 fun ways to flamingo!

  1. Flock a friend on her birthday…just show up late at night or early in the morning so it’s a surprise in her yard first thing in the morning.
  2. Use them for party invitations. Use a permanent marker to list the details of your party, then plant near their front door. More fun than an invitation in the mail.
  3. Use them to add color to your yard before spring flowers bloom.
  4. Dress them up with a Santa hat…or an Easter bonnet. You’ll have fun decorating for every season.
  5. Use them to decorate when you throw a party in the cold, dark days of winter and make the theme tropical. You and your guests can pretend it’s not cold and snowy outside.
  6. Stake by the curb and tell guests your house is the one with flamingos.


Even if you don’t have a lot of space, you can help guests feel more comfortable during their stay with these 6 easy tips.

1. Make sure to have coffee on hand. The Coffee Stack organizer keeps your pods organized so your guests can easily find java when they need it.

2. The Fold-out Ottoman quickly converts to a comfortable bed for your guests and is perfect for those small spaces. Fold it up and tuck it away during the day.

3. Provide a variety of reading material for your guests. The Reader’s Nightstand keeps books and magazines organized next to the guest bed. There’s even room on top for a clock and some bottled water.

4. Make sure to provide extra toiletries and towels for your guests. The space-saving Duo Shower Curtain Rod holds your shower curtain on one side, while guests can hang their towels on the other to dry.

5. If you need extra space for meals, the Round Table Extender turns your square table that normally seats four and turns it into a round table that seats up to eight!

6. Don’t forget about those extra touches, like leaving a surprise ornament by the bedside or decorating the guest room with a lighted willow branch. Little touches can make the room seem extra cozy.

Resolution: Get organized.
Advice for sticking to it: We feel more relaxed when our surroundings are neat and orderly! Cut through closet clutter by applying a “two-year” rule: if you haven’t worn it in two years, you probably never will. Don’t let the mail stack up – sort through each day when it arrives. Look for unused storage spaces under furniture and behind doors. Schedule time each week or month to clear away clutter.

More ideas: An organized closet is possible!

Featured product: Stack pots and pans without scratches!

Resolution: Save money.
Advice for sticking to it: We can’t change prices, but we can help keep money in our wallets by making smart decisions and planning ahead. Before buying something, ask yourself if you really need it. Don’t rush to upgrade your car, computer, cell phone or other items if they’re working fine – and keep in mind it may be more cost-effective to have them repaired if they’re not.

More ideas: 10 bright ideas for lowering the light bill

Featured product: Lower energy bills with insulated curtains!


Even if you’re a winter sports buff, you probably spend a lot more time indoors during cold weather and shorter days. If cabin fever is setting in, don’t despair! There are plenty of indoor activities that can stop you from going stir-crazy and keep you busy until spring. Here are ten ideas for keeping boredom at bay…you may even be sorry to see winter end!

  1. Break out a board game or jigsaw puzzle. They may seem outdated in this brave new world of electronic pastimes, but board games and puzzles engage your mind in a way that video games can’t. Best of all, they bring families together – instead of one person focused on a computer or TV screen, you get to interact with your family, enjoying the game and sharing the day’s happenings. Even if you’re the only one at home, the satisfaction you’ll get from completing a 1,000-piece jigsaw or a tricky crossword will outweigh what you get from watching a rerun! (Shop Games at Solutions.)
  2. Try a new recipe. Remember Sunday afternoons baking cookies with your mother or grandmother? The kids can experience that same pleasure with you! Worried about nutrition? Give them two cookies each as a treat and take the rest to a homebound relative or friend – the kids get to experience the enjoyment of baking with you, a small treat for themselves, and the satisfaction of giving to others. No kids in the nest? Recruit your spouse and try a new or complicated recipe, or just experiment on your own. (Check out or recipes section for new ideas!)
  3. Map out your spring garden. It’s too soon to start planting, but thinking about flowers and plants will make spring seem closer. Whether you aim for a prize vegetable patch or a balcony full of colorful window boxes and planters, start planning your spring garden on paper, using seed catalogs and browsing gardening sites online for ideas. (Shop Yard, Garden, and Patio at Solutions.)
  4. Plan your vacation. Anticipation is part of the fun! Sit down with your spouse, your kids or just yourself and consider what you’d like to do on your yearly trip. Figure out a budget and gather information on different places (contact the tourism office in the state you plan to visit), or do an online search to find out what activities an area has to offer. Remember, it’s not too soon to make reservations for vacation hot spots. Summer won’t seem so far off when you’re planning your destination wardrobe!
  5. Plan a “date” night with your spouse or family once a week. Prepare a gourmet dinner, set the table with your best linens and fine china, light some candles and spend some quality time with the love of your life! Or rent a film the whole family can enjoy, and treat the kids to popcorn, pizza and root beer floats.
  6. Gather photos into an album or start a scrapbook. Do you have packets of photos stored in a box or drawer? Is your computer full of digital pictures you’ve been meaning to print? Organize them into albums so everyone can enjoy the memories…even make a scrapbook.
  7. Catch up on correspondence. It’s easy to lose touch with long-distance friends or family when things get busy. Set aside some time to catch up and send a long e-mail, or, better still, a letter – people still welcome snail mail, and a hand-written letter can be a treasure loved ones will keep forever. If you don’t have the time or the words to write a lengthy letter, send a fun or touching greeting card with a short note.
  8. Join an online community. Harsh weather keeping you from getting out? Find some new pals online! While it’s important to guard your identity, many online communities require users to become members in order to take part. Once you’ve done so, create a profile to connect with people around the world who share your interests. You can trade photos, share ideas or just chat.
  9. Start a craft project. Knitting, crochet, sewing…fabric arts have seen a resurgence in popularity, and it’s surprisingly easy to get started. Magazines with simple instructions can be found in most supermarkets, and many community colleges, yarn and crafts stores offer adult classes. Try needlepoint, cross-stitch, scrapbooking or rubber stamping…your hands and mind will stay busy, and you’ll have something fun to show for your work when the winter is over! (Shop for Craft Organizers at Solutions.)
  10. Get a head start on spring-cleaning. Get a jump on your spring-cleaning ahead of time! You won’t be able to whip the yard into shape, but you can organize your closets, pantry, home office…even the attic or garage on warmer days. Skip cleaning the carpets until after the weather clears, but go ahead and touch up the paint on the walls.