Gift Wrapping Tips

by Michael Keating

Gift Wrapping Tips

 

As with books and their covers, judgement on the packaging of presents, while not indicative of its contents, might weigh heavily on the receiver’s perspective. Ribbons and bows go a long way, but even the thoughtfulness of covering every surface efficiently can prove difficult for some and agonizing for others. This holiday season, we’d like to share some ideas for the upcoming and future exchanges that will ease your gift wrapping woes.

1. Traditional bows are great and probably on sale for a discount right now, but consider incorporating nature as an accent. Flowers and poinsettia leaves provide a burst of color, while the rustic feel of pine cones and acorns also subtly suggest the promise of tremendous growth. If you’re particularly crafty: this DIY-er created napkin rings from acorns, which could pair just as nicely with a small box. They’re probably handsome enough to not even need the suggested coat of paint, though be cautious not to pierce the cap too suddenly, as they are quite fragile. Even adding a branch of greenery from an evergreen can spruce up a box, check out these design ideas we’re pining for.

Gift Wrapping Tips - Bowsimage via Pexels

2. Brown Kraft Paper is a staple. Consider picking up a role just to have a solid  background against which all of the colors inspired by the season shine brightly. Additionally, this paper tends to be biodegradable and easily recyclable. Transforms what can be visual chaos into a blank canvas. It’s thick and sturdy enough to be drawn on, decorated, and “flaired” without being too stiff to fold and crease.

3. Looking for a new way to present snacks on the platter? These are just perfect. Use the colors of nature to reflect the colors of the season. This specific one uses broccoli crowns as leaves and cauliflower as snow. Dazzle guests with the perfectly wrapped presents under the tree and perfectly placed hor d’oeuvres on the table.

Gift Wrapping Tips - Snacksimage via Pinterest

4. Sometimes gifts are so imperfectly shaped that they defy boxes: create the perfect custom shaped packaging by making a container out of gift wrap. Gone are the days of obvious exchanges and loose bag tops for people to sneak peeks. This video is especially helpful for step-by-step instructions.

5. Whether you’re short a box top or just have a smaller item than you thought you would, use that rectangular box bottom to create a whole new vessel. This wrapper shows us how to easily overcome this challenge.

6. Know your recipient’s cocktail of choice? Mason jars make for handsome presentations of a small bottle of Jack Daniels and a can of Coke. The liquor can be tied to the outside of the jar near the lid and the mixer sits comfortably inside.

Gift Wrapping Tipsimage via Pexels

7. As much as crafting a special sleeve for gift cards can be fun, nothing really beats a handwritten card, with a warm message to accompany it.

Gift Wrapping Tips - Cardsimage via Unsplash

We hope you enjoy your holiday and happy wrapping!

 

Apartment of the Week: River West

$2,600 for this 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom midrise in River West is available now! Sleek & sophisticated living redefined in one of River West’s premier locations! Be the first to live in this stunning new construction luxury apartment! Features include a spacious glass wall living room w/fantastic city views, hardwood floors, gourmet kitchens w/Italian cabinets, quartz counters, stainless steel appliances, master baths w/glass enclosed shower, private balcony and much more! Garage parking available for an additional fee. In addition, you’ll also find in unit laundry, central air, walk-in closet, intercom. This building is close to so much! Nearby is the Kennedy Expressway, the Halsted Bus, and the Grand Blue Line Station. There’s so much to explore around the River West neighborhood! Being close to the Blue Line, you have easy access to the popular neighborhoods such as Wicker Park & Logan Square. There’s a variety of places to checkout, that don’t require you to hop on a train. Some nearby places include Piccolo Sogno, Iguana Cafe, The Dawson, Emmit’s Irish Pub, The Roost Carolina Kitchen, La Scarola……. just to name a few. Call us today to book your showing!

[metaslider id=2308]

  • ID: 51773
  • Available: Now
  • Neighborhood: River West Chicago, IL
  • Bedrooms: 2 Bedroom
  • Condition: New Construct
  • Bathrooms: 2.0
  • Floors: Hardwood
  • Pets: Dogs OK
  • Heat: GFA
  • A/C: Central air
  • Laundry: In unit
  • Parking: Garage
  • Dishwasher
  • Blinds
  • Internet Ready

Contact Apartment People at 773.248.8800 for more information. Our office is located at 3121 North Broadway and we are available Monday-Sunday. You can view more listings at apartmentpeople.com. Equal Housing Opportunity.

Facebook: Apartment People

Twitter: @AptPeople

Instagram: @apartmentpeople

Google+: Apartment People

12 Ways to Keep the Bills Low and the Spirits High

by Michael Keating

12 Ways to Keep the Bills Low and the Spirits High

 

This time of year, when spending seems unavoidable as well as enjoyable, with the holidays and the trips, gifts for others and gifts picked up for yourself, we’d like to highlight a few ways you might be able to save on expenses at home. As the temperature drops, spikes in electric and gas bills appear, here’s our list of ideas on cutting apartment costs.

1. Distribute the expense People’s Gas, a major supplier of natural gas in the Chicagoland area, has residents’ best interests in mind. Instead of dramatic shifts in both outdoor temperatures and the cost of gas bills, users may opt for Budget Billing, which protects consumers by averaging out usage, calculated by last year’s figures and this year’s weather and price forecasts. Essentially, the total cost of the year is divided evenly and instead of gas bills going from negligible to monstrous just as the weather turns, they stay steady and reasonable throughout.

2. Seal those windows Perhaps one of the oldest tried and true methods at keeping the heat in and the cold out is to insulate windows, most especially if they are single pane. Rubber adhesive may be applied to the windows’ frame to stop any drafts. Insulation film can be purchased at any hardware store or online. Helpful instructions on installation can be found here, complete with photos and useful considerations. Renters also attest to the effectiveness of bubble wrap on windows–some say that the wrap up year round will keep warmth in for winter and heat out in summer. Unsure of how much of a draft is coming in? Instead of holding your hand by the windows, try setting a candle down–you’ll be able to see any breeze, if you can’t feel it. At the very least, lock your windows; it’ll close them more tightly and significantly reduce any draft.

12 Ways to Keep the Bills Low and the Spirits High
image via Pexels

3. Invest in another smart device If you’ve got central air and heat in your nest, consider the Nest Learning Thermostat. Currently on its third-generation, reviews place this as the best overall smart thermostat on the market, though older versions are received just as well and are less expensive. From their website: “With the Nest app, your thermostat lives on your wall and in your pocket. Once you connect your thermostat to Wi-Fi, you can control it from anywhere. Adjust the temperature from the app, and the Nest Thermostat adjusts quickly back at home.” With increased control, you’ll be able to heat your apartment when you’re on your way home and you’ll never have to worry about having left it accidentally on again! Additionally, Open all your vents, circulating the air and also keep the filters new and clean. While it may seem tempting to close the vents to the unused rooms, this actually can kick the heating system into working harder.

4. Focus the heat where you need it If your apartment does not have central air, consider centralizing the heat around you. Personal space heaters as well as an electric blanket or a heated mattress pad will keep you feeling tropical even if you’re surrounded by the tundra. Wool socks go a long way, no wonder they’re such a popular wintertime gift!

12 Ways to Keep the Bills Low and the Spirits High
image via Unsplash

5. In consideration of radiator heat Place heat-resistant reflectors between radiators and walls. In the winter, this will help heat the room instead of the wall. You may also “bleed” your heater, doing so will eliminate the pockets of air that prevent the heat from distributing evenly. This guy shows us how easily this can be done. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OzgwlLpmXNQ

12 Ways to Keep the Bills Low and the Spirits High
image via Pexels

6. Get the direction of your fan right Lifehacker’s stellar advice: “When it’s hot, the fan should spin counter-clockwise to push the hot air up and out. When the weather turns cold, instead spin the fans clockwise to trap heat inside. You’ll often find a switch on your ceiling fan to choose a direction, so consult your fan’s manual to find out where it is.” Also, if you’ve got electric heat, try setting a fan in front of it. This will easily spread the warmth around.

7. Beware of “Energy Vampires” Other matters to be aware of: The device used to stream movies might be costing you more than going out to the theater. According to the New York Times, “[I]f you use your gaming console to stream movies, well, don’t. They can use 45 times more power than streaming consoles, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council, mostly because they aren’t good at using only as much power as the task at hand requires.” Power strips are now made to be smart as well. Devices such as your television use power even when they are shut off–they’re “on” unless they are unplugged. A smart power strip will completely shut off any idol devices.

12 Ways to Keep the Bills Low and the Spirits High
image via Pexels

8. Check ComEd for rebates A rebate for up to $100 for a Nest Thermostat is available through ComEd. The omnipotent energy supplier has several rebates available for energy efficient appliances as well as energy saving home products, such as an air purifier and a smart power surge with instant savings at select retailers. Thinking about long-term savings? Consider swapping your lightbulbs to LED if you haven’t already. ComEd’s data on the matter is eye-opening. And Energy Star agrees that by changing your five most frequently used light sources to CFLs even, could save you up to $65 a year! It’s their top tip of ten for renters.

9. It’ll all come out in the wash Wash your laundry with cold water whenever possible. Who doesn’t love the smell of clean clothes? Brighten your flat by air drying your freshly washed garments. Check out this $5 clothesline constructed with apartments in mind. If you must use a dryer, shake out each item first, doing so opens up the surface area and allows your apparel to dry more quickly.
12 Ways to Keep the Bills Low and the Spirits High
image via Unsplash

10. Fill your fridge You may not use all of the space within your refrigerator or freezer, which means every time you open it, the air outside enters and warms the empty spaces quickly. You can keep the icebox from unnecessary work by occupying that empty space. Some attest to using containers filled with water or even newspaper! The added advantage is that items are moved up front and you’ll be on top of your cooler’s inventory.

11. Small electronics make a difference From Apartmentguide.com’s blog: “New appliances are much more energy efficient and responsible than older appliances. You may not be able to upgrade major appliances in an apartment, but that doesn’t you don’t have any control. Some minor appliances whose newer models tend to be much more eco-conscious include computers, televisions, hair dryers, hair straighteners, toasters and blenders.” Sound advice.

12 Ways to Keep the Bills Low and the Spirits High
image via Pexels

12. Gather People are good sources of warmth, invite your cousin over for tea or have a neighbor over for conversation. Each person generates around as much heat as a 100 watt light bulb…

Hope these pointers are able to save you dollars and contribute to your cheer!

Apartment of the Week: Roscoe Village

$6,000 for this 4 bedroom, 3.5 bathroom house in Roscoe Village is available now!! This one of a kind home has over 4,000 square feet!! There’s hardwood floors throughout the common areas and carpeting in the bedrooms. Dramatic 14′ ceilings highlight the grand living and dining room. Fully appointed Chefs kitchen opens to the family room + spacious rear deck. The stunning kitchen has granite counters and stainless steel appliances, including a dishwasher and microwave. There’s a large master suite with cathedral ceilings, custom closets & marble bath. Home also features in unit laundry, 2 fireplaces, deck, extra storage, central air and a 2 car garage that’s included in rent!! This must see home is positioned in the Roscoe Village neighborhood, with the Damen, Ashland, and Diversey bus routes nearby. This area has so much to offer! Close by you’ll find Jewel-Osco, Beef & Barley, The Art of Pizza, Red Hot Ranch, Cody’s Public House and so much more! Hurry and book a showing today for this dream home! Mention ID# 51716

[metaslider id=2225]

Contact Apartment People at 773.248.8800 for more information. Our office is located at 3121 North Broadway and we are available Monday-Sunday. You can view more listings at apartmentpeople.com. Equal Housing Opportunity.

Facebook: Apartment People

Twitter: @AptPeople

Instagram: @apartmentpeople

Google+: Apartment People