Disabled Living

Here’s a very useful YouTube Channel for wheelchair users - not simply from an accessible home design point of view but other basic things about how to get by if you find yourself confined to a wheelchair for any length of time.

Sometimes the simple ideas are the best - check out the extra handle on the garage door as we take a look around Brian’s home:

Check out Brian’s main channel for more of his videos…

https://www.youtube. … ackpearlv6/featured

An automatic house

There was an interesting article on the BBC website today about a guy who has turned his home into one which watches who is in the building and alerts the owner if there is someone there which it doesn’t recognise. It also adjusts the heating etc. if someone turns up who prefers the house a little warmer or cooler, and the developer expects to be able to expand his system to allow him to “talk” to the house and just issue whatever commands he wants.


It may all sound a bit geeky and even a bit sinister from a privacy point of view, but this is exactly the kind of system which I am surprised hasn’t been developed by a big company such as Amazon or Google because it could open up the possibility of affording a much greater degree of independence for disabled people.

Couple this with a few robots for specialist operations such as getting someone in and out of bed, or to the bathroom, and it would be just brilliant for someone like Georgi to be able to live more or less on his own, yet still be monitored in case he needs help with something.


The Arch

I quite like the archway into the kitchen now, even with all its current imperfections.

Maybe we could have a bigger archway (or half-arch) at the wall in front of the side window?


Final (or maybe not) kitchen material & colour selection

We returned to the kitchen materials shop today to discover that the materials we liked first time around weren’t laminated MDF after all - just laminated chipboard - so we needed to make another selection.

Lana’s favourite was what she called “Dirty White” (Code 0811) - with one aspect of the purchase being on her mind… how to keep it looking clean. Lana is holding the floor tile we’ll have in the kitchen, to see how it looks.


The alternative (my favourite, Code 0804, but not so easy to keep looking clean) was the more yellow colour:


It’s difficult to see the colours properly on the internet, or even take a decent photo of the material in the shop, but they were on display in the same place so this gives an approximate comparison of the two shades of colour:


The lower one is definitely a more grey colour. Possibly the closest I could imagine the kitchen looking like in the colour which Lana chose is something like this:


It IS an incredibly difficult thing to decide on - I think the best we can do in a situation like this is to just go for it and, if we don’t like it, put up with it and  put it on our list of improvements to make once we’ve got over the financial hump of getting the place fit to live in.

Choice of material for the kitchen units

Today we went to the big kitchen materials store to try and choose all the boards and mechanisms. While we managed to select the cupboard and drawer mechanisms and the face detail for the doors there was a conflict of opinion on the colour and finish for the kitchen units themselves. There was also quite a wide selection of handles to choose from, but we’ll leave that until we decide on the material.

We did manage to get it down to a shortlist of about three. The type of material we went looking for was laminated MDF and the stock in the store was mainly the EGGER brand which, on checking them out more thoroughly, seems to be the most reliable brand we could see there. Another brand we looked at was CLEAF but this turned out to be laminated particle board (chipboard) so they didn’t make the shortlist.

With all manufactured materials like this there is a safety element to consider, which is the slow release of formaldehyde which is used in the bonding agent. I did find a safety data sheet for the EGGER material which says it meets Emission class E1 of EN120, which means that it just meets it or it greatly betters it - I suspect the former but I think we’ll be safe with it being laminated too.


This was Lana’s favourite but my first impression of this one was that it would look terrible - a really fake wood effect… and the colour just isn’t something I could get used to, ever. We’d decided against getting a real wood kitchen so I don’t see the point in trying to emulate the effect we’ve already decided against.

Having now seen their catalogue I’m somewhat relieved to find that this is not laminated MDF - it’s laminated chipboard so that rules this one out.image


I suppose this was my alternative choice if we HAD to go for a wood effect - against all logic (see my reasoning above). This is laminated MDF and ,while it looks a rather good and less expensive alternative to real wood I’m not sure it would look so great once we’d had the full kitchen built out of it - it would make good office furniture.

H1394_ST9_560x410.jpg (560×410)


Lana quite liked this one. I thought it looked ok but, perhaps, a bit too cold (a grey beige instead of a warmer shade). Again this is laminated MDF - I think this one makes the shortlist.


This one caught my eye because of the warmer tone and it may go well with the floor and the dark brown quartz countertop we want, but it may actually be a little too dark.


In conclusion from what we actually saw in stock it seems to be a choice between the EGGER F425 (Beige Linen) and F427 (Beige Leather). If, as I suspect, the Beige Leather is a bit too dark then I am leaning towards the Beige Linen - particularly when you compare this to the full range of similar materials. They do have a Grey Linen there which is distinctly grey, and the Beige Linen does seem to have a hint of beige about it.

If we don’t like it we can re-model the kitchen in a few years!

As far as the style of door we liked these two styles - the rounded top version particularly so: