Tuiss – beautiful, affordable blinds

When we moved in last June every window in our new house had net curtains at it and curtains that seemed to come straight out of an old people’s home so one of our first tasks was to rip out the nets and now room by room we’re looking to dress each window beautifully. So I jumped at the opportunity to look at the blindson the website. I was immediately impressed with their enormous collection of beautiful blinds and their equally beautiful website that is so user friendly.

Tuiss pride themselves in using the very finest materials and the latest styles allowing them to offer affordable luxury. They have an extensive range making Roman, Roller, Wooden, Venetian, Blackout, Energy Saving and Vertical blinds and an enormous selection of beautiful fabrics to choose from. Blinds are the perfect opportunity to add your own stamp to a room and with such a choice of style and colour you can create the perfect environment in every room. The Roman blinds in my lounge fit snugly in the frame adding a splash of colour which dresses the window uniquely and doesn’t block out the light.

I am currently looking at investing in someblackout blinds for the bedrooms as we’ve already noticed that with the lighter mornings our girls are waking up far too early! Of course it’s not only the light that’s kept out but they’re perfect to keep out the heat on a hot sunny day, by pulling down your blackout blinds you’ll ensure the room stays cool and comfortable. Tuiss even make Energy Saving blinds! Their NRG roller blinds not only reduce heat loss but keep your heating bills down and reduce your carbon footprint. I have chosen a waterproof PVC blind for our new bathroom which acts as a shower curtain too and now I’m on the lookout for a brightly coloured roller blind for our kitchen to add some cheer to our mornings.

Each blind is custom made in the Tuiss workshop and extra attention has been paid to the finer smaller details. For example their exclusive aluminium toggles have been bespoke designed to be the perfect size and weight. The fabric roller designs feature smooth operating metal chains, like jewellery and the fully lined Roman blinds are sewn and not glued. Each single product sold by Tuiss has been made with care with particular attention to the finer detail.

Simple, easy to follow instructions are set out in the Handy Dandyguide all you have to choose is if you want your blinds hanging in the recess or outside of the window frame. If you’re still not sure their outstanding customer services are at the end of a phone and are more than willing to help out and guide you through the process. If you’re not quite sure on your choice you can order up to 10 free fabric samples and once your order has been taken Tuiss aim to deliver between 5 – 14 days. They also guarantee the blinds for a year with a manufacturers warranty.

Of course if you’re like me and find it hard to decide then have a look at the Tuiss blog which will keep you updated on all the latest ideas too.

Stunning inspiration for your home interior design

The worst thing about moving into a house that needs a lot of TLC is having to live in the 1970’s decorated rooms until you have the time and money to do them as you see fit. The best thing about moving into a house that needs a complete makeover is the research! We moved in at the end of last June and so far we have redecorated the lounge and renovated the upstairs bathroom. Our next project is the girls room and then we must tackle the difficult and complicated kitchen cum utility room cum downstairs wet room, a major headache!

I have always loved interior design, looking in mags and online for ideas and of course my time in Italy was a brilliant background for picking up on design elements. The Italians aren’t just clothes, their love for beautiful things spills over into every element of their lives and a big area of that is interior design.

There are many fabulous Italian interior designers who have created masterpieces that have gone on to be reproduced by the mass market, an example the Bombo Bar Stool by Stefano Giovannoni. In fact there’s something clean cut, contemporary and ultimately stylish about Italian design and the company Areaz has certainly picked up on that. For example, if you are planning an open, non cluttered environment and your choice of materials are aged wood, sparkling crystal and unique metals then Antonello would suit perfectly offering a range of tables, chairs and bookcases with a simplicity that is absolutely stunning.

If it’s a diverse and imaginative solution to your household storage and functional furniture, then Magis should be your first stop off on your search. Over 25 years of offering buyers creative options to common household items has led to a dedicated workforce that to this day produce items of exemplary standard. Be it a watering can with a difference or a child’s chair to fit your colour scheme, Magis can offer.

As every designer worth their salt will tell you, lighting is of the utmost importance in creating atmosphere, making people feel welcome and at ease in your home and the obvious function of adding light to a room. Flos, based in Merano, a beautiful city in the north of Italy, since 1962 produce iconic and provocative designs that surpass utility and breach aesthetic ground. Their dedication to research into innovative materials and technology makes them produce progressive and radical lighting products.

So if like me you want to create a beautiful home and include some pieces of stunning simplicity and beauty then keep your eye on these top designers. If you can’t afford their price tag then watch out in other stores for similar products that are more within your budget and be happy in the knowledge that you too are on trend.

Appliances Online rock!

Well the nicest thing happened to me just before the New Year and it was similar to other people I follow in the blogosphere. I was contacted by a Very Nice Person from Appliances Online who had seen I a comment I had left on Nickie’s blog, I am Typecast, the day she received a jar of Nostalgia – retro sweets from them. Part jealousy on my part at her stash of Refreshers, Black Jacks, Cola Cubes and the like which took me back to the 10p tuck shop days. Do you remember them? Clutching your 10p in a sweaty little hand and staring for ages at the bounty of sweets  laid out in front of you. mmmm

Well Nickie did mention, leave a comment below and maybe you too will recieve a surprise some day. So I did. I didn’t think anything of it, I mean the blogosphere can be a fickle place, lots of promises and no follow through but what the heck, give it a go. So you can imagine my surprise when I found an email in my inbox offering me three books on how to improve writing skills, even going as far as to say if I wasn’t happy with the choice made on my behalf I could accept Amazon vouchers and choose my own!

‘Go on! Your having me on.’

I re-read the mail and decided that Ben could only have known I was interested in writing and was giving it a go IF he had visited my blog and traipsed through quite a few posts. Think of the time? Think of the patience of the poor man! Think of the headache that must have followed!

Here is a picture of the books chosen for me and very gratefully accepted I hasten to add. Stephen King, International Bestseller of zillions of books so should know what he’s talking about. In fact he was run over by a car in June 1999 and it took 6 operations to save his life and mend his body. Once able to sit up he started to write On Writing so I am sure it will hold many gems of knowledge. Bird by Bird, written by Anne Lamott and Writing Down The Bones by Natalie Goldberg which I look forward to discovering when I have the time :)

You know this game of pass the parcel started a while back when Ian Newbold got a washing machine from Appliances Online. I also noticed Jen at The Madhouse got a brand new fridge sent through and Josie at Sleep is for the Weak got an oven! Well I suppose it’s never too late to mention that I need a brand new kitchen, is it? No of course, that would be rude and ungrateful …

So guys? Fancy trying your luck at this pass the parcel, Jen got a fabulous coffee set over at The King and Eye, leave a comment below and if you do get contacted please link back to me as I’d love to see what you got. What are you waiting for? Comment and retweet, retwit, retwoo

PS and just in case you’re wondering where the bird comes from on the shelf well that’s my own picked up in beautiful Puglia, Italy in a town called Alberobello, you really must check it out…

Dear Virgin Media – part 2

Dear Mr Darren Hall – Head of Credit Management

I am writing in reply to your letter dated 01 November 2010 where you state I have recently left Virgin Media and have absentmindedly forgotten to pay an outstanding amount of £42.66 to you. This will be in the aftermath of the numerous attempts I have made to try and speak to somebody within your organisation regarding my disconnection back in JUNE!!!

During my most recent phone call, I spent 37 minutes on the phone and spoke to 5 different people, all of whom had to pass me on to somebody else to rectify your embarrassing situation. This call ended with your disconnection team and for the umpteenth time I explained that after moving I had failed to cancel my direct debit with you and I was still paying monthly rates which needed to be refunded TO ME.

Apparently there are lots of notes on my ‘screen’ but they all fail to solve this simple issue.

Let me make this easy for you..

  1. I left Virgin Media on 28th June 2010, when we moved house I was told there would be one final payment in July.
  2. I discovered in September that I was still being billed by Virgin Media and started to get in touch with you in order to have the August and September payments refunded. I cancelled my direct debit in order to prevent any more payments being taken.
  3. I email you via the Contact Us button on your website – to this day I haven’t received a reply.
  4. I speak repeatedly, on more than four separate occasions, to various members of staff from Customer Services, Redirection, accounts and many others. I email you via your website again and never receive a reply.
  5. One kind lady in October discovers I haven’t even been disconnected yet and promptly justifies that, she then tries to sell me your latest offers before I put the phone down (?) I am no longer one of your customers!!!
  6. During my last phone call, after a further massive round of chatting with various departments, I spoke to a gentleman who apologised profusely for this enormous cock up and promises me a letter will be in the post with a cheque for the outstanding amount. I believed him and sat back in my chair waiting.
  7. I receive a bill for £84.00 – missed payments. (How did you reach that sum?)
  8. I telephone you again and get passed from pillar to post. After a 30 minute phone call I am promised this situation is now corrected and I will receive a letter in the post to that effect.
  9. I receive your letter asking me for £42.66 (How did you reach that sum?)

Mr Hall, I am at a loss as what to do here. No matter how many people I speak to nobody wants to give me my money back. It seems that people simply cannot leave Virgin Media as the computer doesn’t know how to close down an account. You have thousands of people on your payroll who can’t do anything but the most meaningless tasks, as anything out of the ordinary requires a ‘Must speak to my manager, can I put you on hold?’ Why isn’t the manager being flagged up the minute I call in? Why isn’t the manager stepping in and sorting out this incredibly simple situation immediately instead of letting it drag on and exasperate me even more?

 Mr Hall, I cannot email you via your website as there is no one at the other end picking up the emails and replying.

I cannot telephone you as your staff can’t cope with this simple request and pass me on to somebody else, who also can’t.

I refuse to pay for services that I haven’t used but fear that the only way I shall get to speak to somebody from the Virgin Media organisation is if we go to court! At least then I can look you in the eyes and explain in Very Easy Words

You Owe Me Two Months Payment Please Refund Now.

And we’re quits, job done!

I would like to advise you that I shall be copying the content of this letter to my blog it will be the second unhappy post I blog regarding Virgin Media. The post will also be tweeted via Twitter (and I ‘follow’ Virgin Media in the hope that they pick up on this situation). I hope people comment on the blog and retweet to infinity because in this day and age of high technology and the expansion of enormous organisations like Virgin Media who declare millions of pounds profit at the end of their financial year I find it atrocious that paying customers cannot speak to somebody within the organisation and rectify the simplest of tasks.

Is it a case of having grown so much there is no longer any contact with the people who actually make your billions of profits per year?

Your company has a massive flaw that needs to be corrected at earliest. It’s pointless investing millions of pounds a year on a very successful advertising and marketing campaign IF you can’t follow through with a decent and capable customer services.

Please, please Mr Hall, can you look into this for me and see that this situation is terminated as soon as possible?

 Thanking you in advance for your kind attention to this matter

Yours sincerely

DIY in the bathroom

I’t s D-Day over at Jenny Matlock’s Alphabe Thursday today and I have decided to use this letter to catch you up on my DIY shenanigans, the living room you have seen and although not yet quite finished as I’m still waiting for the mirror to arrive from mirrorworld (paid in full in August!) and a few other bits and pieces, we are nearly there. In fact I had only just put the paint pots away in the garage and cleaned out my brushes when I noticed the girls had added their special touch too, can you see their scribblings on the far wall? Little treasures

Our second project we’ve taken on is the upstairs family bathroom which on viewing looked like this – outdated, tired and in need of an injection of the 21st century.

In need of lurrve

Away with the dirty shower curtain, towel rail, wallpaper, tiles and bathroom suite minus the toilet which we’re keeping it now looks like this

Hard work done – now for the pretty bit

I have the tiles, grout, mosaic border I’m just missing my tiler Heath who phoned in last Friday to say he’d gone down with a bug, sickness and diarrhoea so I am praying he’ll be fit to work this Saturday and we can start to see a more finished bathroom. The bath you can see is  our brand new ‘P’ shaped bath and if you study the mirror (which I am not prying off the wall as I don’t want 7 years bad luck – Heath can do that!) you’ll see the pipe and electrical cable in place for the shower unit.

I haven’t decided on the floor yet, those tiles you see are already cracked as the floorboards move so it wouldn’t be worth putting down fresh tiles again only to see them crack too. I have been looking at Amticotiles but I’m going to wait until the bathroom is finished and then decide. I am hoping the cupboard above the toilet can be tiled to create a place where I can put up a couple of glass shelves and use as display, I will buy a floor cabinet to house all of the many products needed in the bathroom to keep them tidy and as the whole scheme is very neutral I have invested in purple towels to add a bit of life in there :)

Oh la la!

Just before you go, my other ‘d’ could have been Doughnuts

But that would just be unkind of me to put that thought in your mind – right?