This Table Sucks Up Heat to Lower Your Electric Bills

Energy efficiency isn’t just for buildings anymore. Now, even your furniture can help lower your electric bills.

The ZeroEnergyFurniture Climatic Table sucks up heat from its surroundings, which cools the room around it. When the temperature decreases, it releases the heat. 

Created by designers Raphaël Ménard and Jean-Sébastien Lagrange, the table features phase-changing material inside a corrugated aluminum sheet under the tabletop. Like a wax, the phase-changing material softens once the temperature gets above 71 degrees Fahrenheit, soaking up excess heat from the room. When the temperature drops below 71 degrees, the wax hardens, releasing the stored heat back into the air. Thus, it acts as a kind of air conditioner that you can also eat your lunch on.

The design duo estimates that the Climatic Table can save offices up to 60 percent in heating costs and 30 percent in cooling costs. They plan to start selling it later this year. Previously, Ménard and Lagrange had released an eco-friendly charging station that powers your gadgets via solar panels. 

[h/t: Wired]

All images © Colombe Clier, VIA 2015

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iStock
Want to Boost Your Home's Value By More Than $6000? Paint Your Front Door Black
iStock
iStock

If you're looking to sell your home, you may want to take some advice from The Rolling Stones and paint it black. Just the front door, that is. That's because front doors in shades of black or charcoal tend to raise a home's value by $6271, according to a new analysis by real estate website Zillow.

"For a seller, painting a front door is one the least expensive home prep projects, but also one that can have a powerful impact on a home's sale price," Kerrie Kelly, a home design expert for Zillow, said in a statement.

However, this may have more to do with the contrast than the colors themselves. Kelly said more subdued hues like beige and light blue are still popular, but real estate experts have seen a trend toward "pops of color, particularly in darker hues" like dark blue, gray, and black. "Contrasting colors, especially in kitchens and home exteriors add interest and dimension to a room that plays very well in listing photos and videos," Kelly says.

Also popular are "tuxedo kitchens," in which the countertop and upper cabinets are either black or white, and the lower cabinets are painted in contrast. That design scheme can raise a home's value about $1550, Zillow reports.

For its 2018 Paint Color Analysis, Zillow looked at more than 135,000 photos of homes sold across the country between 2010 and 2018 and compared their closing prices to those of similar homes with white walls. In doing so, they were able to conclude which color schemes are considered most valuable.

Other paint jobs that can hurt a home's value include yellow exteriors, brown dining rooms, and red kitchens (red in general is said to be an anxiety-inducing hue, so it's best to use it sparingly in homes). On the other hand, light blue bathrooms and light taupe living rooms are an asset.

If you're hoping to sell your home but don't plan to do so for another few years, it's best to hold off on repainting, if possible. Tastes in color schemes are constantly changing with the times—just two years ago, Zillow recommended yellow kitchens and purple dining rooms.

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IKEA
Syrian Refugees and Jordanian Women Created a New Line of Home Goods For IKEA
IKEA
IKEA

After debuting the Tilltalande Collection at its Amman, Jordan location last year, IKEA is finally bringing it to the U.S. As Curbed reports, every item in the collection was created by women from Jordan and refugees from Syria.

The new line is a collaboration between IKEA and the Jordan River Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to improving the lives of Jordanians, especially women and children. It includes a flatwoven rug and pillow covers decorated with elements like camels and blossoming cacti. Fifty Jordanian women artists and 50 Syrian refugees worked with IKEA to design the items and craft them by hand.

The Tilltalande Collection is the latest way IKEA is helping some of the millions of refugees forced from their homes by conflict. In 2015, the furniture company debuted its flatpack shelters, temporary homes that provide protection and electricity to displaced people around the world.

The new line of textiles will be sold at IKEA's Brooklyn location starting this June. If all goes as planned, the collection will provide employment to 400 people by 2020.

Pillow decorated with cactus.
IKEA

[h/t Curbed]

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