Lamps History Of Lighting A Look At A Few Popular Decorating Styles French Country Kitchen Design Paint Perfection In Just A Weekend Tips Tools And Know How Make Paint Projects Simple

Numerous references from olden ages have illuminated the fact that lamps have been used to spread light, even before electricity was invented, and lighting was given a new meaning. The use of lamps can be broadly classified into two eras: The pre-electrical era and the post electrical era.

Lamps: The Pre-electrical Era

The invention and first usage of lamp can be dated back to 70,000 BC.

At that time, there was no metal or bronze to make lamps instead the then civilization used hollow rocks and shells. These hollow rocks were filled with moss and other natural substances and then soaked in animal fat. Animal fat acted as oil and this is how the first lamps were ignited.

With the advent of pottery, and the bronze and copper age, humans started to make lamps that imitated other natural shapes. Wicks came into existence much later and were used for controlling the flame or the rate of burning. In the 7th century BC, Greeks started using terra cotta lamps, which replaced the handheld torches. The word lamp has been derived from the Greek word lampas, which means torch.

Lamps and the Design Change:

There was a major change in the design of lamps in the 18th century, when the central burner was invented. With the invention of the burner, a separate fuel source was made from metal. Another small change made was the addition of a metal tube that could be adjusted to control the intensity of the flame or light.

This was an important discovery in terms of lighting because with adjustment, humans were able to diminish the lighting or make it bright as required. Another aspect was added to the new lamp, which was in the form of small glass chimneys. The role of the glass chimney was to protect the flame as well as control the air flow.

Swiss chemist Ami Argand used the hollow circular wick in an oil lamp for the very first time in 1783.

Fuels for Lighting

Different kinds of fuels have been used for lighting a lamp between 70,000 BC and now. Most of the early forms of fuel were beeswax, olive oil, animal fat, fish oil, sesame oil, whale oil, nut oil etc. These were also among the most commonly used forms of fuel for lighting a lamp till the late 18th century.

Around 1859, the first drilling process was initiated to find petroleum and with the advent of kerosene, which is a derivative of petroleum, lamp became more popular and usage increased. Kerosene enabled lighting was first introduced in Germany in 1853.

During the same time two other products were used for lamp lighting purposes and they were natural gas and coal. The first use of coal gas lamps was in 1784.

Electrical Lighting Lamps

Lamps have actually come a long way from usage of coal gas to electricity. In 1801, Sir Humphrey Davy of England invented the electric carbon arc lamp, which was the first of its kind. The working principle for this lamp was simple and included hooking of two carbon rods to an electrical source.

The carbon rods were kept at a distance from each other so that electrical current could flow through the arc and thus vaporize carbon to create white lighting. Around 1857, A.E. Becquerel of France came out with the theory of fluorescent lighting in lamps. In the 1870’s, the unthinkable happened with Thomas Edison inventing the first electric incandescent lamp. Since then incandescent lamps were used for lighting purposes in homes till about the early 20th century.

In 1901, Peter Cooper Hewitt patented his new invention, the mercury vapor lamp. This was another type of arc lamp that enhanced lighting using mercury vapors, which were enclosed in a glass bulb. The Mercury vapor lamps set the prototype for fluorescent lighting lamps.

The Neon lamp was invented by Georges Claude of France in 1911 followed by Irving Langmuir, an American who invented the electric gas-filled incandescent lamp in 1915. In 1927, Hans Spanner, Friedrich Meyer, and Edmund Germer patented the first fluorescent lamp. The fluorescent lamps provided better lighting as compared to the mercury vapor lamps because they were coated from inside with beryllium.

Since then we have been using different form of lighting in lamps, which includes Mercury vapors, incandescent lamps and even today, in some corners of the earth people still use the old wick and oil lamp for lighting their homes.

A Look At A Few Popular Decorating Styles Popular decorating styles are always changing. Is your home up to date on the latest fashion trends and decorating tips?

Popular decorating styles are fun, interesting and they just add something to talk about to the rest of the home. If you are considering a redo of your living room, your kitchen, your bedroom or virtually any other room in or outside of your home, consider some of today’s more popular choices. You are sure to find one, or two, that you really love to use.

Traditional: We have to start with the traditional look because it just does not go out of style. Here, the look is furniture that comes from the Kings and Queens of yesteryear, early American trends and a wide range of other formal styled items. You are looking for traditional to come through in the upholstery, in the window treatments and even in the accents that are placed around the room. Traditional is a style that is highly expensive to pull off with exceptional quality furnishings.

Shabby Elegance: Who’s to say that this is not one of the best methods of decorating. The look is that of chic, something that features light toned wall and furniture colorings, old china pattern looks, warm yet comfortable pieces that create a sense of relaxation when you look at them.

Contemporary: Modern contemporary looks have always been in style in the last decade. These looks are influenced by pieces that are bold and bright, different and unique and are functional yet are also more of a piece of art as well. You will find straight, clean lines in the furnishings and walls here.

Art Deco: This popular decorating style is one that seems quite a bit like the modern contemporary yet it has a more flowing look to it. The lines are not as straight, but rather are curved.

Rustic: The look for the log cabin is not gone. In a rustic Southwestern feel, you will have woods used of various types. It will have a laid back feel with warm throws and soft, comfortable furniture. The color scheme here is that of warm, rich colors that complement the woods.

French Country: This is a very popular choice in decorating styles. Here, you will have many bright colors and will have that feel of whimsical dreaming. Wood finishes are done with fruitwoods and cherry. Art work with color is on the walls.

One of these popular decorating styles will work perfectly in your home. There are plenty to select from to help you to transform the look for your home into something that is amazing.

A kitchen can be more than just about its role in function, organization and efficiency. Kitchens need a personality and a look and feel that can liven up the senses in addition to being a functional place for the preparation of food. The French Country Kitchen design is one of many classic kitchen design themes that you could consider. It can provide your kitchen with a traditional look that has its roots in the hillsides of rural France. It is a style that can fit into both rural farmhouses and in the grandest chateau.

French country kitchen design conjures up images of the Provence and the French countryside with its pastoral settings, lavender fields and rustic French farmhouses. The French country kitchen represents country living that is uniquely French. In designing your French country kitchen design you discover that the French country look is always very rustic, old and warm.

There are many elements that go into the French country kitchen including the use of large pieces of furniture made mainly of light colored woods and can be decorated with ornate carving.

Color & French Country Kitchen Design

Color is an important place to start the design process. You can draw inspiration from some of the principle French impressionists like Monet and Renoir, Van Gogh. Colors that are used in the French country kitchen style can include sunny yellow or soft gold, bright red and rust, grass green, cobalt blue and soft ocean tones.

You can decorate in the style of the French country kitchen design by using vivid colors – poppy red, sunflower yellow, bright blue, meadow green, and sunset purple. Your walls and cabinets and large furniture can be painted in off white, ivory, light beige, and taupe. Cabinets can be painted a glossy white to brighten light-filled spaces in the kitchen or they can be left as natural wood. These colors can provide a light, airy feel so you do not want to use strong colors here. In fabrics such as curtains and seat cushions you might also add paisley, stripes and floral prints to your French Country Kitchen theme.

Natural Materials

Natural materials are an important element in walls, cabinetry and furniture that is used in the design of French country kitchens. The materials used in creating a rustic French country kitchen look include natural stone floors, granite counter tops and tumbled marble back splashes. These natural materials can be used on walls and beamed ceilings, and can be rough stained or painted plaster, or wood painted in natural colors. Floors can be made of stone or brick and covered with wool or cotton rugs, a fireplace made of stone with a heavy beam that can serve as a mantel, and wooden shutters as window coverings. Furniture and cabinets can have a rustic or even a distressed look. Countertops can be done in ceramic tile with tile back splashes.

Accent Pieces

In French country kitchen design you will find that tile, rustic urns, hand-painted European ceramics and pottery accents are used extensively. Ceramic tiles and terra cotta pottery pieces are used wherever possible. Add copper pots and a French country kitchen can can encompass many old world decorating colors.

A kitchen can be more than just about its role in function, organization and efficiency. Kitchens need a personality and a look and feel that can liven up the senses in addition to being a functional place for the preparation of food. The French Country Kitchen design is one of many classic kitchen design themes that you could consider. It can provide your kitchen with a traditional look that has its roots in the hillsides of rural France. It is a style that can fit into both rural farmhouses and grand chateaus.

The materials used in creating a rustic French country kitchen look include natural stone floors, granite counter tops and tumbled marble back splashes.

On any given weekend in the U.S., thousands of people set out to accomplish home improvement projects. However, stumbling blocks such as color selection and knowing where to start can cause DIYers to delay starting their projects.

To make life easier, enhancements to True Value’s Color Made Simple paint program help simplify the often-overwhelming process of selecting paint colors.

“Weekends are a great time to freshen up your home with paint,” says Sloan Payne-Rutter, designer, paint expert, author and host of the public television series “Paint! Paint! Paint!” “Color Made Simple and True Value give DIYers the color selections, paint tools and advice they need to complete paint projects they can be proud of.”

Payne-Rutter suggests the following weekend paint projects to bring a little color into your home:

Shabby Chic Antique:

• Project Idea: Liven up your living room by “antiquing” a coffee table to give it the look of age. The antique look is accomplished with the application of a glaze that is usually earth-toned or darker in color.

• Tip: Use flat paint, which is more porous and absorbs glaze better.

You Light Up My Life:

• Project Idea: Give your kitchen a quick face-lift this weekend without spending a lot of money. Brighten the entire room by simply painting dark cabinets a lighter color and updating cabinet hardware.

• Tip: The fumes from the paint and the primer can get intense, so make sure to open some windows or doors.

It’s Faux Real:

• Project Idea: Add some fun to a child’s bedroom with a faux-finishing paint technique. Sponge painting is a quick and easy decorative painting style that’s popular and perfect for beginners. Use a natural sponge as a paint applicator and two or three colors of paint to create a multicolored, textured effect.

• Tip: Use a clear commercial glaze and tint it with interior paint. Mix one part paint to four parts glaze.

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