10 Tips for Safer Holiday Light Displays

Every holiday season, U.S. fire departments respond to an average of 200 home fires that started with lighted trees, according to the National Fire Protection Association. Electrical problems caused one-third of these incidents. Fortunately, these fires are not common, but when they occur they are almost always serious.

To make sure your holiday season remains cheerful, keep the following safety tips in mind while decorating your home:

  1. Use lights that have been tested for safety. Look for “UL” on the tag, which means the lights have been approved by Underwriters Laboratories, a global leader in testing, inspection and certification.
  2. Inspect lights for broken or cracked sockets, frayed wires or loose connections. If you encounter any of these problems, throw it away.
  3. Limit the number of light strands to three per outlet. For added safety, use a power strip with a built-in circuit breaker instead of a wall outlet.
  4. Replace incandescent lights with LED lights. They generate less heat, which makes them a safer choice both indoors and out. Although LED lights are more expensive, they last much longer and use 75 percent less electricity—two additional reasons to make the switch.
  5. Part with your old lights. Hand-me-down lights may be sentimental and less costly, but newer lights are much safer. That’s because they’re equipped with fused plugs that prevent sparks if a short circuit occurs.
  6. Remember that indoor and outdoor lights are not created equal. Indoor lights, which have thinner insulation, are not made to withstand wet winter weather. Read the label carefully to ensure you’re making the right purchase.
  7. Be extension-cord savvy. For exterior decorations, be sure to use extension cords that are UL-rated for outdoor use. Indoors, avoid running extension cords in high-traffic areas where people could trip over them. Do not hide extension cords under rugs or beneath furniture, where they could become frayed or overheat.
  8. Adhere to a lights-out policy when you leave the house or go to sleep. If the lights short and start a fire, you want to be available to take action. Avoid the extra hassle by purchasing an automated light timer or remote control.
  9. Keep in mind that electric lights and metallic trees don’t mix. The tree could become charged with electricity, causing a potential electrocution hazard for anyone who touches it. If you prefer an aluminum tree, opt for a colored spotlight that’s not fastened to the tree.
  10. Make sure outdoor lights are plugged into a ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlet. These are designed to protect against electrocution by automatically turning off when a change in electrical flow occurs.

As you brighten up the holidays with indoor and outdoor light displays that everyone will love, keep everyone safe with these tips.

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Import Tariffs

By now I’m sure you’re aware, the United States has scheduled import tariffs to be imposed on a variety of products from China – where many of our manufacturing partners’ factories are located. At the moment, there is a great deal of uncertainty around how much the tariff will be. You may have already heard numbers from 10% to 25%, but we are not quite sure where the final numbers will land. The tariff is currently scheduled to impact any listed products that are imported into the USA after October 1, 2018. If the tariffs go into effect as scheduled, we will unfortunately be forced to raise prices proportionate to the imposed duties by early October. Of course, if the tariffs do not go into effect, there will be no tariff-related price increase.

As you can imagine, this is a complex and developing situation that we’re monitoring closely. We will most certainly keep you posted with more specific details as we learn further in the coming days and weeks.

We sincerely appreciate your business and are confident we will be able to work together through these challenging issues. However, we suggest you keep these dates in mind to avoid the impending price increases – especially for any big ticket item you may have been considering to purchase.

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Meet Arteriors Home Guest Designers

Arteriors, one of our favorite brands and a leading provider of luxury lighting, occasional furniture and decorative accessories, has licensing partnerships with celebrated interior designers. We thought you’d like to get to know them and see their designs.

CELERIE KEMBLE
Celerie Kemble has been creating gracious interiors for nearly twenty years. Her unique ability to weave together the worn and refined with a quiet irreverence has placed this design darling in a league of her own. From an Upper East Side townhouse to a Caribbean retreat, Celerie creates multi-faceted homes that capture the sentimentality of their inhabitants. It’s this nuanced approach that has earned Celerie countless accolades including a coveted spot on Architectural Digest’s AD100.

In her debut collection for Arteriors, Celerie blends material, texture and finish to forge beautifully dynamic pieces that are playful yet polished. Natural materials like wicker, rattan and bamboo are paired with antique brass, perforated metal and stitched leather to deliver a striking balance of the senses. The resulting collection is complex and layered, marrying an ethereal aesthetic drawn from Celerie’s Palm Beach roots with contemporary flair derived from her city life in Manhattan.

Shop the Celerie Kemble Collection

BARRY DIXON
Barry Dixon is known as one of the most prolific names in design. A master of drama, he creates spaces that are classic yet curious, an approach that’s infused in his latest collection for Arteriors.

While a childhood spent abroad introduced Barry to eastern mysticism, a visit to China: Through the Looking Glass at The Metropolitan Museum of Art reignited his sense of wonder. Barry devoured old films and revisited his travels to recapture the essence of the Orient. He then paired these themes with his natural world to explore how opulence and adornment interact with forms in nature. From antique brass foliage to gold-leafed thorns, each detail unfolds to reveal a world of gothic glamour that provokes the senses.

Shop the Barry Dixon Collection

WINDSOR SMITH
Windsor Smith, Founder of Windsor Smith Home, is known as an innovative force in the design industry, rethinking conventions of home design to meet today’s demanding lifestyles. A favorite of shelter editors and design bloggers alike, Windsor’s clients include influential leaders in the entertainment and business worlds who appreciate her fresh approach to design. As Windsor Smith Home grows in scope and influence, the impact of the brand is greater than ever.

In her second collection for Arteriors, Windsor has infused a worldly, artisanal sensibility in the new designs. Modern materials and finishes like white porcelain and gray lacquer are mixed with hammered and hand-forged metals to create pieces that feel contemporary and yet, in some ways, ancient.

Shop the Windsor Smith Collection

JAY JEFFERS
Jay Jeffers is recognized as one of his generation’s most dynamic interior designers. A natural curator, Jay brings his signature cool, collected style to every project.

Since founding his eponymous firm in 1999, Jay has built a lifestyle brand that reflects his thoughtfully layered aesthetic. By approaching each project through a modern lens, Jay creates compelling spaces that marry traditional and contemporary design. With a keen eye and an inherent sense of style, it’s no surprise that Jay landed a book deal and coveted spot on ELLE DÉCOR’s A-List.

On the heels of his celebrated capsule collection, Jay has collaborated with Arteriors once again to create a more expansive assortment that brilliantly mixes genres, textures and patterns. In his design work, Jay culls together effortless groupings that offer just the right amount of restraint. This same aesthetic drives this collection, redefining luxury for the modern age.

Shop the Jay Jeffers Collection

LAURA KIRAR
Laura Kirar’s collections for Arteriors highlight the beauty of raw materials, natural elements and the originality and creativity of the designer herself. “I have always been inspired by art, architecture, fashion and nature.”

Starting with a fragment, sketch or even just a memory, Laura takes an idea and commits it to paper or sometime even to clay – celebrating fine craftsmanship with her thoughtful attention to detail.

Shop the Laura Kirar Collection

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Decoratively Challenged?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DECORATIVELY CHALLENGED?

Grab your No. 2 pencil. Here are a few questions from Mark McCauley’s “In-Depth Personality Quiz To Determine Whether A Person Is Decoratively Challenged Or Simply Male” from his 1995 Paperback called “Interior Design for Idiots A Self Help Guide to Interior Design”

1. Your family room is located:
a) at the back of your home
b) at the front of your home
c) off the kitchen
d) at your neighbor’s home because you can’t stand yours

2. Does your dining area resemble:
a) a quaint 18th Century English country dining room
b) a formal Victorian dining room
c) a contemporary California-style eatery
d) the chuck wagon on “Rawhide”

3. Your favorite chair style is:
a) Chippendale
b) Queen Anne
c) Regency
d) folding

4. When choosing a personal style for yourself you:
a) research the topic
b) phone a friend
c) visit the library
d) call the Psychic Connection

5. When was the last time you redecorated?
a) within the past 6 months
b) 2015
c) 2000
d) did what?

Here’s a hint at how you’d score on the complete quiz:

If you answered “c” or “d” to any of the questions, you’re in trouble, says McCauley. If you did not, there is “some hope.”

Best, says McCauley, is if you had simply thought about the questions, but refused to answer: “You are a person of character who wouldn’t stoop to attempting to understand their personality by answering a bunch of goofy questions.”

———-

“Interior Design for Idiots” is available on Amazon.

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Say NO to the Internet Sales Tax

We at BronsonDesign.com strongly encourage you to oppose efforts to include H.R. 2193, the Remote Transaction Parity Act (RTPA), in the Fiscal Year 2018 Omnibus spending legislation. This unfair and damaging proposal would require Internet marketplaces to charge sales tax on out-of-state purchases, which have always been sales tax free.

Under this proposal, items sold to buyers from small, out-of-state companies, artisans, and even average consumers over the Internet will be taxed. This harmful legislation lacks any exemption for small businesses that use marketplace tools – forcing these small businesses to meet costly and resource constraining compliance and audit requirements in states where they do not even have a presence.

Opposing the internet sales tax is easy – just click here, complete the simple form, and a letter will be sent to your members of Congress on your behalf. It takes less than 60 seconds.

Thank you in advance for your support!

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