Friday, 28 June 2013

DIY Gifts that Kids can Make - Black & Decker, India

Let’s stop and look at DIY as a different approach to gifting. If we introduce our children to this concept at an early age, they will learn to think about repurposing and recycling as a way of life. You don’t have to worry that kids may not be able to attempt any complicated projects, as here are some easy ones:

Wrapping paper: Before thinking of gifts, let’s think of one really easy and fun project for kids. Take any old newspaper and use a printing technique on it, to get the more creative and original wrapping papers ever! You can use vegetables like okra, or the bottoms of plastic cups for the printing.

Handmade cards: You can use the above printing techniques, or even use spray paints using old plastic bottles as sprays and teach kids to make lovely cards for events in your family. This is also an activity that kids can do without much supervision as long as you protect floors and clothes from getting too messy.

Coasters from waste: Using old CDs or cardboard sheets as a base, and fabric or colourful paper to cover it up, your kids can make lovely coasters to serve as gifts. You can help them with finishing the products by a layer of lamination to make it long-lasting too.

Jewelry: Slightly older children can learn to braid and make bracelets out of leftover threads and twine. They can also make pendants from old coins, with just a little help from you. Aunts and grandmothers will treasure such items a lot more than any store-bought gifts.

We hope these ideas can spark off even more creative ones at your home. Do let us know the results of trying them out! At B&D we hope to make DIY a bigger part of your lives, and we hope that starting small will lead to a lot of DIY projects from your end too J. Do check out our products at:

Monday, 24 June 2013

Green cleaning using household ingredients - Black & Decker, India

Tired of yet another allergic reaction to that strong chemical cleaning agent? I have an even tougher time with an allergic child around at home – even strong smells can set something off. I have come to realize over the past few months that there are many cleaning agents that we have lying around in our kitchen or home that we don’t realize the utility of:

Baking soda: The next time you are trying to remove a stain from a vessel, instead of scrubbing and using strong cleaning agents, just add baking soda and pour hot water on it. It works like magic, and is a most cost-effective solution too.

Vinegar: A diluted vinegar spray, along with some baking soda can remove even stubborn stains from bathroom tiles. I also recently heard about using vinegar as an ant repellant, hope to try that out sometime soon. Your local kirana shop should have a large bottle of vinegar that will last you for a lot of cleaning.

Citrus juices and peels: Do not discard those orange peels as they have great cleaning properties. Just rub them on stained areas, and leave for a few minutes before scrubbing lightly and you’ll see most stains clear up. Can you imagine the difference from those acidic agents that hurt our hands and feet while using them?

These ideas can make a good beginning to green cleaning and I hope you would like to try them out too. I would also love to hear from you on what worked for you! While on the subject of eco-friendly cleaning, do check out the Steam Mop that can eliminate germs up to 99.9% using just steam, and other products from Black & Decker:

Friday, 21 June 2013

How B&D has made our lives easier - Black & Decker, India

“Hit the nail on the head” used to be a common phrase, but we don’t hear it much nowadays, at least where DIY is concerned. Ever wonder why? We think it maybe because we have amazing tools such as the Electric Drill Kit from Black & Decker and that has made the action of using a hammer to hit the nail on the head a completely obsolete activity J. We started wondering which other activities have undergone a big change after the advent of power tools thanks to pioneering companies like B&D:

Vacuuming: The early vacuum cleaners used to be heavy and unwieldy machines, and using these could nearly be counted as a sort of exercise. Now you have the light, cordless and even great looking vacuum cleaners such as the Orb-it, that will probably even double up as a showpiece when you leave it to charge.

Painting: If this still brings an image of a brush and a can of paint to mind, you will be amazed at the change B&D has brought to this area. Not content with the ease that a roller provides over a brush, we decided to make the roller even more advanced. Our RapidRoller comes with a paint dispenser so that you will not see those ugly spots and splatters any more!

Floor cleaning: The revolutionary Steam Mop is a very efficient way to clean floors, so much easier than the standard mop and bucket regime. Not just the ease of use, but eco-friendly too as it uses just steam - there’s not much more you can expect from a floor-cleaning device. 

For a lot more about our cleaning and other appliances, do take a look at our website:

Monday, 17 June 2013

Gardening and DIY - Black & Decker, India

It’s summer time for most of us, and this is a great time to spend hours in our gardens. The monsoons are starting off, and our plants are all getting new growth and everything is looking lush and green and beautiful. Gardening can sometimes turn into an expensive exercise, especially if we keep on buying new containers and equipment. Here are some ways in which you can repurpose and use DIY to meet your gardening needs:

Containers: If you keep an eye out, anything can serve as a container or pot for gardening. Old pots, buckets and crates from the fruit vendor can all be used in place of pots. The adventurous few could even visit the local “raddi” vendor to find large plastic containers that do very well for a garden. If using a material like wood, make sure to line it with a thick plastic lining such as tarpaulin to keep it as water proof as possible, and don’t forget to drill a few holes in the bottom for water drainage.

Gardening equipment: Did you know that you can make your own watering can from an old plastic container? This is a good tutorial to try out. A lot of other items such as scissors, knives, brushes can all be put to good use in your garden, after they have run out of use in the home. For the interested DIYers here’s a great way to make your own garden rake – may take a little time but worth it.

Stands: When most of your garden is in pots, it can get tough to keep them from staining your floor. You can repurpose kitchen shelves as stands for smaller pots, and for the bigger ones you can even make your own. If you don’t feel ready for that metalworking yet, design it according to your specifications and get it made from your local metal furniture craftsperson.

Black & Decker provides you a range of tools that helps you DIY in an effortless way. We also have garden tools for your landscaped spaces! Do take a look at:

Friday, 14 June 2013

Décor ideas for your kid’s room - Black & Decker, India

Kids always want their rooms to be a special space, and I’m sure most parents agree. It’s the place where they can completely be themselves, and it should give them a place of comfort along with having its own character. If you are able to make out at a glance that it’s a child’s room, that’s the best way of telling that you've succeeded! Here are some ideas:

Choose the colours with care: The walls of a child’s room can be a great way to unleash a lot of creativity, both from you as well as the kids. Use one wall as a mural, that you can do yourself if you feel up to it. You can also create a blackboard area on another portion so that no kid needs to feel bad about scribbling on walls.

The furniture counts: You may find lovely pieces in a flea-market or while bargain hunting, which you can then try DIY techniques on to make it look even more exclusive and in character. This is also a great opportunity to create your own piece of furniture that can also be used to create splashes of colour in the room.

Are things accessible? Use a lot of open shelves, and mostly at lower levels, unless you need to keep something out of reach for a specific reason. It helps kids become independent, as they get used to finding and putting back their own stuff much faster if everything is at their accessible level.

To make that foray into DIY whether for painting or making your own furniture, do check out our tools at:

Monday, 10 June 2013

Have you heard this one? - Black & Decker, India

We put together some quotes about our favourite subjects – DIY and Home cleaning. Do take a look, and we hope they’ll bring a few laughs your way J.

It takes half your life before you discover Life is a Do-It-Yourself project!
-          Napoleon Hill

If you want a thing done well, do it yourself.
-          Napoleon Bonaparte

There are three ways to get something done – Do it yourself, hire someone or forbid your kids to do it.
-         Mona Crane

If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.
-         Abraham Harold Maslow

Cleaning your house while your kids are still growing up is like shoveling your walk before it stops snowing.
-         Phyllis Diller

There was no need to do any housework at all. After the first 4 years, the dirt doesn’t get any worse.
-         Quentin Crisp

My idea of housework is to sweep the room with a glance.
-          Erma Bombeck

My idea of superwoman is someone who scrubs her own floors.
-         Bette Midler

There is no daily chore so trivial that it cannot be made important by skipping it two days running.
-         Robert Brault

Dust is a protective coating for the furniture.
-         Mario Buatta

We hope you liked the list!

At Black & Decker, we let you retain your humour even while doing housework. Just try out our appliances and see how easy we can make it for you! Do check out our webpage for more details:

Friday, 7 June 2013

Safety with Power Tools - Black & Decker, India

When setting out to do some DIY  especially using power tools, many amateurs may try to attempt the same without using the appropriate safety equipment. While most modern tools such as ours from Black & Decker are made with the user’s safety in mind, it is always recommended to use additional safety gear to guard against any unforeseen accidents and situations.

Gloves: You require heat resistant and if possible padded gloves to use along with appliances such as a power drill. This protects you from the vibration, as well as from any flying pieces of masonry that might come loose from the drilling. After long use, the appliance may get heated up a bit, and the gloves protect your hand from any uncomfortable heat too.

Safety Goggles or Glasses: The eyes are one of the most sensitive parts of our body and it is important to protect them while using most power tools, especially for activities like metalworking. Even while using the drill, or painting, it is a good idea to wear goggles just to prevent any unexpected spills or accidents from affecting the eyes. Depending on the activity, a full face mask may also be a good idea.

Earplugs: For protecting the ears while handling tools with loud noises and vibration, wearing earplugs makes your job much easier. The ear is a very sensitive organ, and continuous and regular exposure to loud noises can have a harmful impact.

Clothing: It is important to wear loose and comfortable clothing, but not any trailing pieces like shawls or long mufflers, when involved in projects using power tools. For comfort, it is also advised to stick to fabrics that breathe well like cotton rather than synthetics.

Others: When on a construction site and using power tools, it is necessary to protect yourself well and use safety clothing such as protective jackets and boots, and also a hard hat when necessary.

When buying a Black & Decker power tool, do enquire regarding safety measures too. Drop in at our website for more details regarding our appliances:

Monday, 3 June 2013

Top 3 tips to keep your kitchen clean - Black & Decker, India

Did you ever think about how many germs could be lurking in your kitchen? Reading articles like this one can give us quite a scare, and we may be left wondering if we need to spend all day in this space to make it clean and healthy enough for our family! But that is not necessarily the case, and with just a few small pointers we can get rid of all these fears:

Clean as you go along: Food spills that are left as is for hours tend to develop bacteria and also become tougher to clean after they dry up. It is best to wipe up immediately after a spill, use a soft cloth but do remember to wash the cloth in hot water regularly too. Though using tissues seems an easier solution, wiping cloths are a much more environment friendly option. For dry spills, check out our hand vacuums that can clear it up in a jiffy (there’s a wet and dry version too)

Steam cleaning: Using an appliance like the Black & Decker FSMH1621 Steam mop with Steambuster ensures that you kill 99.9% of all germs using just steam. Clean your kitchen slab regularly, and the hand held Steambuster also helps you clean the insides of your appliances like microwaves and ovens. This helps you get rid of most of the unseen germs without using any strong chemical agents.

Regular clear up and cleaning: Leftovers that are left in the fridge tend to take up space, and also develop mold after a while which makes it tougher to dispose. Plan a bi-weekly schedule of clearing up the items in the refrigerator, along with a regular cleaning of the refrigerator shelves and trays. Make sure that items like the ice-tray are cleaned well before using. In case of vessels used for cooking, leave them to soak before cleaning with a scrubber, for best results.

Hope these serve you well to make a start, or if you were already doing most of the above, make you feel relieved J. For more information on the above mentioned and other appliances at Black & Decker, do check out our webpage: