Tips and tricks for spring cleaning your home

6 Quick Spring Cleaning Tips And Tricks For a Fresher Home

Creative social content writer
Refresh, declutter, and organise your house for a clear, fresh space.

Spring is here, and we can already feel the days getting longer, the skies getting lighter, and smell the blossoms blooming. The spring season begins a feeling of newness and freshness that we want to emanate into our own homes. Start your spring clean with these 6 tips to help you eliminate the clutter, clear the air, and start afresh with a clean space at home.

1. Home made fabric spray and air freshener

Air fresheners are a great way to freshen up your home, but shop-bought air fresheners can have harsh chemicals that can be bad for your health. Homemade air freshener is so easy to make, without the risk of you and your family breathing in harsh chemicals.

All you need is:

  • 5 cups water
  • 1/2 cup vodka
  • 10 drops essential oils (tea tree, lavender oil)
  • Spray bottle

Mix all the ingredients in the spray bottle and shake to combine. Spray on your fabrics, curtains and air to leave your home smelling fresh and clean with a natural scent.

Use on fabrics, curtains and air so your home can smell fresh and clean with a natural scent.

Make your own air freshener to spray away those bad smells without the harsh chemicals. Photo source: onegreenplanet.org

2. Use toothpaste to polish silver

If you’re cleaning silver cutlery or jewellery, use a tooth both instead of expensive silver polish, and never put your silver in a dishwasher. All you need to do is rub the toothpaste on like soap, and rub it off with a kitchen towel. The results are remarkable. Toothpaste that contains more hydrated silica will work best, such as Tartar control paste.

Tartar control toothpaste will clean best as it contains the most hydrated silica.

Use toothpaste to clean and your silver for a polish shine that won’t damage the cutlery. Photo source: onlymyhealth.com

3. Organise your bookcase

Get rid of old books that you no longer need to free up valuable space. You should categorise books by subject and size to make it easier to find. You can add some personality by lining them vertically and horizontally in a rhythmic pattern to avoid a flat and boring system, this will add visual interest.

Declutter your books by giving away old, tatty books you no longer read

Organise your book shelf by subject and size so you choose the book you need with ease.

4. Get clever with storage

A shoe organiser is great for storing products in a tidy and coordinated manner, making it easy to find products, and what’s more they are versatile enough to be hung all over the house. Branch out and use a shoe organiser to store cleaning bottles, kitchen products, and whatever clutter you have in the house.

Hang shoe holders around your home as they are so versatile.

Get creative and use a shoe organiser to store your cleaning products and other clutter. Photo source: realsimple.com

5. Organise your wardrobe

Clearing out your closet is the best start to organising your life, by making your everyday routine more simpler. Give your unused clothes to charity, and organise your clothes by how often you wear them, type of item, and by occasion.  When you have an organised wardrobe, you can have a clean, flying start to every day.

Declutter your closet by giving unused, old clothes to charity.

Organise your wardrobe so your can start everyday with a clear and simple routine. Photo source: home-dzine.co.za

6. Vinegar away

Lime scale can be unsightly, and make any shiny surface dull and looking old. Avoid scrubbing off lime scale. The minerals are very tough, so abrasives scrubbing can damage the finish of the material underneath.  You can buy brand-name lime scale removers: however, vinegar is a great alternative that is less potent of harsh chemicals and just as effective. Use it to remove lime scale on your kettle, your showerhead, taps, washing machine, and dishwasher, stainless steel or tiles surfaces. The vinegar must stay in contact with the lime scale for it to be most effective. Either soak the product for an hour in vinegar, or if it’s something tricky like taps, then use a towel soaked in vinegar and wrap it around the taps for an hour. In a washing machine, use a cup of vinegar instead of detergent and run a washing cycle without clothes. In a dishwasher, pour vinegar into the base of the machine rather than the detergent dispenser. Your home will be glistening with shine!

Vinegar is an effective alternative with less harsh chemicals.

Vinegar is a great way to remove them unsightly limescale for a sparkly shine. Photo source: wikihow.com

And there you have some easy, effective tips to get your home organised, clean and ready for the new spring season, so you can get on with a kick start to your days.

 

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Mothers day conest

MOTHER’S DAY PHOTO COMPETITION – Best Mother-Child and Owner-Pet Lookalikes

Win Luxury Mother’s Day Treats by Biscuiteers and a £50 Marks & Spencer Gift Card in #BioFiresMum Contest!

March is finally here and we’re happily saying hello to spring. This month is all about budding cherry trees, first spring walks in the park with our family or friends and, of course, Mother’s Day. As this special day that reminds us how much our mothers mean to us is just around the corner, Bio Fires have a new exciting competition that could win you and your mum a fabulous prize! But this time it comes with a twist – we’re not celebrating only mothers but also caring pet owners and their furry friends. Curious for more? Read on!

Is your daughter a mini version of yourself? Do you keep getting comments that your son is a spitting image of you? Or perhaps you have a pet that looks uncannily similar? Enter our Best Mother-Child and Owner-Pet Lookalike Photo Contest for a chance to win these amazing Mother’s Day gifts from Biscuiteers, a luxury biscuit boutique that offers delicious hand-iced gifts, Marks & Spencer, and Bio Fires.

Be a winner of our Mother's day contest by showing a pic of your dog, cat, mummy, son, or daughter"

Show us your mother-child or owner-pet lookalike photos for a chance to win special Mother’s Day prizes!

The winners will receive one of these fantastic prizes:

What better way to treat your mum to what she deserves for Mother’s Day?

Luxury biscuits, fireplace accessories, and £50 gift voucher card.

Win these beautiful Mother’s Day prizes from M&S, Biscuiteers, and Bio Fires. Picture source: M&S, Biscuiteers.

How does it work?

For this Mother’s Day, we’re asking you to show us your best mother and daughter, mother and son or owner and pet lookalike photos. You can submit one photo of the two of you or two separate photos next to each other.

To enter the competition, post the photo* on our social media channels, use the hashtag #BioFiresMum and follow these simple rules. Remember, we’ll be just as happy to see your families as dogs, cats or any other pets with their owners!

How to enter the #BioFiresMum Contest:

  1. Facebook: LIKE our page (that will allow us to tag the winner), LIKE the competition post and POST the photo on our Facebook page with the #BioFiresMum tag. You can SHARE our competition post for extra points.
  2. Instagram: FOLLOW our profile, LIKE the competition photo, POST the photo to your Instagram account using the hashtag #BioFiresMum and leave a COMMENT once you have done so (we may not be able to track your mention if your account is set to private so please make sure to leave a comment).
  3. Twitter: FOLLOW our profile, FAVOURITE the competition post and RETWEET it. UPLOAD the photo to your Twitter account using the hashtag #BioFiresMum and mention @GelFireplaces in the tweet.
Special Mother's Day competition to treat all the caring mums and pet owners.

Bio Fires are celebrating all the amazing, inspiring, loving, super mums.

Good luck and get posting!

Terms and Conditions

  1. The competition runs until Sunday 26th March 2017 inclusive.
  2. Only one entry per person is permitted. Bio Fires cannot be held responsible for any undelivered or invalid entries.
  3. Three entries that fulfil all the above-mentioned criteria and win our hearts will be awarded either the first, the second or the third competition prize.
  4. The prize pool consists of the following three prizes: Biscuiteers’ Mother’s Day Flowers Biscuit Tin (worth £30) + £50 Marks & Spencer gift card + Aura Oil; Biscuiteers’ Teapot Big Biscuit Card (worth £20) + Aura Oil; Biscuiteers’ I Love U Mum Biscuit Card + Aura Oil.
  5. We may repost the supplied messages and images on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for others to appreciate.
  6. The competition is exclusive to social media and open for everyone over 18, based in the UK.
  7. The prize is non-transferable and non-exchangeable. There is no cash or credit alternative available.

* We reserve the right to use supplied messages and photos on our website, blog and social media during the promotion of the competition and afterwards.

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original Valentine's Day tabletop bioethanol burner

4 Unique Craft Gift Ideas for Valentine’s Day

Get creative for the ultimate gift that’s personal and from the heart

Guest content writer.

The most romantic day of the year is fast approaching, and there can be a lot of pressure to get it right, for we all want to show our loved one how special they are. February 14th is Valentine’s Day, and whatever you give your Valentine, make sure it’s special, memorable, and most importantly personal. Read these 4 unique craft gift ideas for the ultimate gift that will charm your Valentine’s heart all over again.


1. My chocolate sweetheart

Everyone loves chocolate, so try these cute heart shaped chocolates. A delicious, milky chocolate fix, but not your average shop bought chocs, and what’s more they’re so easy to make, all you need is a silicone heart shaped mould. Just melt your favourite chocolate (dark, milk or white) and fill the moulds with the melted goodness. Cover the melted chocolate with whatever you fancy: nuts, dried fruit, cereal or anything crunchy, yummy and pretty. Experiment and be your own Willy Wonker, you can have fun with sprinkled candy love hearts, 100s and 1000s, or crushed red M&Ms. Valentine’s has never been so sweet!

These homemade choc hearts are yummy and cute for Valentine's day.

This chocolate hearts recipe is so simple and easy to make. Picture source: clareslittletots.co.uk

2. Fizzle their bath bomb hearts

Help your Valentine unwind and feel pampered with home-made heart shaped bath bombs. All you need is:

1/2 cup citric acid
2 cups baking soda
1 cup Epsom salt
Pink or red bath bomb colorant
1/2 table spoon Jasmine oil
Heart shaped moulds (silicone)
Spritz bottle with witch hazel

Mix the Epsom salt, citric acid, and baking soda in a bowl. Add a few drops of the colourant and the jasmine oil. Then combine in the colourant using your hands. The mixture may clump up, if so sift it through. Then spritz the bath bombs with witch hazel with care. It should take between 8 – 10 spritzes, getting the mixture moist enough so they that the powders stick together and aren’t crumbly, but not too wet that they start to fizz. Once the mixture sticks together, press the mixture into the heart moulds, packing them as tight as you can. Dry them overnight, then remove the bath bombs from the mould.

Pamper your Valentine with these DIY heart bathbombs that they will love.

Home-made heart shaped bath bombs will help your Valentine feel pampered. Picture source: artcraftsandfamily.com

For an extra charming touch, fill up a mason jar with the little hearts and tie the top with a pretty ribbon. Your Valentine will feel pampered as well as loved.

3. Loving photo montage

For that special, sentimental touch, get your creative hands going and make a heart photo collage filled with precious memories you’ve shared together. Print small square photos and arrange them in a heart shape on a large photo frame. Use tape or a bit of glue to stick the photos in place. And as easy as that you have a personalized photo gift to take your Valentine on a journey of wonderful memories that they will love.

Your Valentine will love a photo collage to take them down memory lane.

A photo montage of personal memories will add a special, sentimental touch. Picture source: itsalwaysautumn.com

4. Romantic mantelpiece

A fireplace is a charming focal point to snuggle to, so if you have a fireplace, why not set a show-stopping, romantic scene on your mantel. Red and pink are the traditional Valentine’s Day colours so go for this palette when decorating your fireplace, with heart shaped garlands, red roses and scattered rose petals. Creating a warm and beautiful ambience, with candles and soft lighting will set a romantic mood – it’s all in the details!

There are no set rules, so be creative or personal as you like, tell your own story through your decor using objects with real sentiment to you both, well loved photos that represent the past with ornaments that represent you now.

Decorate your fireplace in red, pink, hearts, roses and rose petals for Valentine's day.

Decorate your fireplace mantel for the ultimate romantic setting to snuggle to. Picture source: bhg.com

For added special ambience to transport you both into a romantic twilight try a warm and relaxing Aura Oil.  The heavenly Amber & Vanilla fragrance is a velvety scent blended with deep sumptuous tones of cedarwood creating the perfect romance. You can also use the Aura oil in a fragrance or candle diffusers for some extra romantic bliss.

Scented oils can be used with your bioethanol fireplace for a beautiful aroma.

For a romantic ambience to transform your home, try a warm and relaxing Aura Oil scent.

We hope that we have inspired you to get creative for your Valentine, and if you want to treat them some more, enter our #BioFiresValentines competition on our social media pages for a chance to win them a White Glass Cube Burner and £60 vouchers for Carluccio’s. Read about it here.

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original Valentine's Day tabletop bioethanol burner

BIO FIRES VALENTINE’S DAY SOCIAL MEDIA CONTEST

Share the Love with #BioFiresValentine Competition and Win a Meal for Two at Carluccio’s and a Cube Burner

Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, and however you spend this romantic day, we can all agree that love is the greatest thing and should be celebrated. It makes us happy, gives life meaning, and makes the world go round – we love love. To celebrate Valentine’s Day this year, Bio Fires want to spread the love among you with our new Valentine’s Day competition. Would you like to win a fantastic Valentine’s prize? Read on!

We’re asking you to share the love by writing a short message to someone you love or posting a picture for them on our social media pages. The winning entry will receive an amazing prize:

Planning a heart-warming Valentine’s Day for your amore or just want to have fun with your friends or family members? Take them to your nearest Carluccio’s restaurant for some authentic Italian atmosphere and treat them to Valentine’s chocolates or wine in their shop.

BioFiresValentine---Italianmeal

Win a romantic meal for two at your local Carluccio’s restaurant by showing someone you love why they are special to you in our Valentine’s Day Competition.

Then bring some magical flame into your home with our stylish White Glass Cube Burner that will keep your heart cosy throughout the year.

How does it work?

We’re asking you to let others know how special they are to you – write a short sweet message in a comment below our competition post or post a picture* for them and tag them – don’t forget to use the hashtag #BioFiresValentine either. Feel free to write the message to anyone you feel close to, be it your partner, family member or friends.

To enter the competition, share the love and follow these simple rules.

How to enter the #BioFiresValentine Contest:

  1. Facebook: LIKE our page (that will allow us to tag the winner), LIKE the competition post, and leave a sweet COMMENT for the person or POST a photo for them to our Facebook page with the #BioFiresValentine hashtag. Don’t forget to tag the person/people the message is for! You can SHARE our competition post for extra points.
  2. Instagram: FOLLOW our profile, LIKE the competition photo, leave a sweet COMMENT with the person tagged or POST the photo to your Instagram account and tag the person. Don’t forget to use the hashtag #BioFiresValentine and leave a COMMENT on the competition post (we may not be able to track your mention if your account is set to private so please make sure to leave a comment).
  3. Twitter: FOLLOW our profile, FAVOURITE the competition post and RETWEET it. TWEET to someone about how special they are to you or UPLOAD the photo to your Twitter account using the hashtag #BioFiresValentine. Don’t forget to mention @GelFireplaces and the person the message is for in the tweet.
BioFiresValentine-Cube-II-WHI-P-5_1080_3_final

Leave a sweet message to your loved one or post a photo for them in our #BioFiresValentine Contest to win this stylish White Glass Cube Burner and £60 gift card for Carluccio’s.

Good luck and get posting!

Terms and Conditions

  1. The competition runs until Tuesday 14th February 2017 inclusive.
  2. Only one entry per person is permitted. Bio Fires cannot be held responsible for any undelivered or invalid entries.
  3. The final winner will be drawn at random from all the entries that fulfil all the above-mentioned criteria and were submitted from 6th to 14th February 2017. The winning entry will receive the White Glass Cube Burner and a £60 Carluccio’s gift card.
  4. We may repost the supplied messages and images on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for others to appreciate.
  5. The competition is exclusive to social media and open for everyone over 18, based in the UK.
  6. The prize is non-transferable and non-exchangeable. There is no cash or credit alternative available.

* We reserve the right to use supplied messages and photos on our website, blog and social media during the promotion of the competition and afterwards.

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Bio ethanol fires were the fireplace choice for a big multi-million pound home development plan, and Bio Fires are so proud to be part of this grand project.

Legendary Recording Studios Converted into Townhouse Mews Get Fireplace Glam with Bio Fires.

Guest content writer.Townhouse Studios that once hosted the biggest names in the music industry transformed into luxury homes with a touch of Bio Fires.

Bioethanol fires are becoming an important part of new home developments. Increasingly popular with interior designers, architects and homeowners who want to inject a dazzling, warming touch into a living space, bio ethanol fireplaces are the perfect fire solution that allows any home to have a beautiful fireplace anywhere they wish, without gas supply, installation, or chimney. So it makes no surprise that fires running on bio fuel were the fireplace choice for a big multi-million pound development plan, and Bio Fires are so proud to be part of this grand project.

Situated in Shepherd’s Bush, Townhouse Studios were built by Richard Branson as part of Virgin Studios Group in 1978, and since then saw a repertoire of big star names, building the studios reputation as one of the world’s greatest and most famous recording studios. The studios hosted some of the biggest stars from the last three decades, including Queen, Sting, Kylie Minogue, Oasis, Blur, Duran Duran, The Jam, the Sex Pistols, Coldplay, Muse, Kylie Minogue, Jamiroquai and Robbie Williams.

Townhouse Studios were built by Richard Branson as part of Virgin Studios Group in 1978.

Townhouse Recording Studios was used by the biggest stars in the music industry, including Oasis, Kylie Minogue and Coldplay.

In 1981 in the “Stone Room” of Studio 2, the explosive drums on Phil Collins’ In the Air Tonight echoed within its hallowed walls with Hugh Padgham’s treatment of the drums. The room became a popular place to record drum sounds during the 1980s. The song was an instant hit, gaining worldwide radio airplay, becoming a pop rock oddity classic. In Studio 1, in 1997 Elton John recorded his tribute Candle in the Wind to Diana, Princess of Wales, on the afternoon of her funeral. The session on that September afternoon is now part of music history, and went on to become the largest and fastest selling single of all time.

"Candle in the Wind" was recorded in the famous Studio 2 of Townhouse Studios. A double A-side with "Something About the Way You Look Tonight". It was produced by Sir George Martin.

Elton John recorded Candle In The Wind for Diana, Princess of Wales, in Studio 1, which became the fastest selling single of all time. Picture source: rocktotick.com

The studio was owned by EMI in 1992, and went on to The Sanctuary Group in 2002. However, in 2008 the famous studio closed. So rich in the unique creative energy of historic and legendary musicians, the landmark property has now been revived with a new life as beautiful, cutting-edge mews houses, after a multi-million pound project. Elegantly arranged around a central glass courtyard, the new homes allow natural light to flow through the heart of the house into the interior space, creating harmoniously beautiful spaces, and offering a unique living environment.

Bio ethanol wall mount fireplace looks beautiful in the refurbished homes.

Bio Fires are proud to have our Phantom Flame featured in the newly refurbished Townhouse home.

Fitted to luxury standards, the state-of-the-art specification could only feature the most luxury standards of fireplaces. In tune with the stylish and contemporary needs of the interior design, Bio Fires very own Phantom Flame in Mirrored Finish floats seamlessly like a phantom on the walls of one of the apartments, completing it with luxurious elegance. Its magnificent regulating line of fire lights up the space with a dancing flame, whilst the sleek, polished mirror reflects and enhances the rooms.

In another apartment, a luxurious fireplace with an integrated Samsung LED television hangs on the walls. The Double Vision by Safretti smoothly unites two of the most important focal points of the room: a fireplace and a TV. An incredible product in harmony with the leading-edge standards of the space.

The Double Vision is a fireplace with an integrated 48” Samsung LED television.

The Double Vision by Safretti with its integrated Samsung LED television transforms this stylish luxury flat.

Bio Fires are proud to have our bio ethanol fireplaces mounted on the same walls that have seen such art and unique creativity being produced from legendary artists like Robbie Williams, Elton John, Blur, Bryan Ferry, Sinead O’Connor, Tom Jones, Coldplay, Muse and Duran Duran. As the history of Townhouse Studios lives on in story and in song, new life begins in new homes, and Bio Fires are equally as proud to be part of the new Townhouse life.

 

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winter_carrington_final_2_b

Bio Fires’ Favourite Christmas Movies

The Bio Fires team share their most loved Christmas films

We all love to cosy at home by the fireplace with a great  Christmas movie to get us into the Xmas spirit. With so many wonderful classics to get us into the mood, we all have our own favourite Xmas movie. So we asked the team which film gets them into the festive feeling.

1. Scrooged

Dickens 'A Christmas Carol' turns into a modern comedy.

2. The Nightmare Before ChristmasTim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas is a quirky perspective on Xmas

3. ElfWill Farrell is hilarious in comedy film Elf

4. The Polar ExpressThe Polar Express is a magical Christmas story

5. Home Alone

Home Alone is a funny Xmas comedy

6. The Snowman

 Raymond Briggs The Snowman is a heart warming classic

7. The Family Stone

The Family Stone is a great family comedy

What’s your favourite Christmas movie?

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‘Tis the season to give, so this Christmas reach out and give the greatest gift

Ways to lend a helping hand to those in need of love and support this Christmas

The true spirit of Christmas is the one of giving and sharing, which is why we have built a tradition of gift giving; a way to thank others and show them how much we care. It is also a time we tend to reflect on our blessings, remembering those less fortunate than us, and making a difference. We at Bio Fires fully understand the importance of a loving, warm home. It’s something we hold dear to our hearts, and it’s why we do what we do. It’s hard to imagine that during this most wonderful time of celebration, surrounded by loved ones, there are those in need of shelter, warmth, food and care. No one should have to feel the absence of these important, yet simple things, so think about making a real difference and lasting change to someone’s life this year.

There are many great charities that run special Christmas projects so that giving can be made easier, and even fun. Read and learn about the charities that we believe do special things over Christmas, and discover unique ways you can give.

1. Volunteering for Crisis at Christmas

Christmas is one of the most difficult times for homeless people. Crisis is the national charity for homeless people who are dedicated to ending homelessness by delivering life-changing services and campaigning for change.

Volunteer at Crisis for Christmas to make a difference this Xmas.

If you have some spare time over Christmas, we couldn’t recommend volunteering with Crisis enough.

Crisis at Christmas is a wonderful project supporting homeless people every year at this hard time. You can volunteer on two or more days in one of their centres over the Christmas period, giving your time and skills to help more than 4,000 homeless guests. Crisis are on the look out for those with specialist skills (like dentists, lorry drivers, hairdressers, and performers) as well as a team of general volunteers ready to help out and make a difference so that guests can enjoy hot food, a shower, a haircut, and clean clothing. They can also receive general health and dental care, and physiotherapy.

By giving your time and meeting those you are directly helping, you can gain a greater understanding of homelessness, helping change the stigma and the way society thinks and acts towards homeless people. And with over 10,000 volunteers, working side to side with others to make a difference can be fun as well as rewarding.

2. Christmas Jumper Day for Save the Children

Christmas Jumper Day is fast approaching! Get together with your friends, family, colleagues, neighbours, dress up in your most fantastic, glitziest festive jumper and show the world your silly side. It’s not just silly jumpers, stick on the reindeer antlers, bauble earrings, Santa hat, and throw on the glitter – the sillier the better. We’ve joined in with the fun by signing up, donating and donning our festive jumpers here at Bio Fires.

xmas-jumpers

Get silly for a serious cause, and don your most festive jumper for Save the Children.

Save the Children give children all over the world a brighter future, creating lasting change in their lives. By getting together, wearing a Christmas Jumper and donating £2 each, you’ll be helping to save children’s lives all around the world, tackling issues concerning poverty, hunger, education, children’s rights and protection. With your kind donation you can help the charity in their vision of a world in which every child gets the right to survival, development, protection, and participation.

People everywhere will be getting in on the act so join in the fun and make a difference by showing your Christmas spirit this Friday, 16th December!

3. Buy Christmas lunch for a homeless person

This Christmas Bio Fires have also chosen to give to The Connection, a charity which helps thousands of homeless Londoners to escape from and stay off the streets. They provide a range of specialist services including: a day & night centre, street outreach, help finding employment, and specialist mental health and addiction support. By helping people address their problems, they will be able to make the important steps away from the streets so they can re-enter society.

Buy a warm Xmas lunch for a homeless person

By donating just £5 to The Connection, you will be paying for one homeless person to have a warm Christmas lunch.

Bio Fires are holding our annual Christmas dinner, where we will celebrate the festivities together with a lovely meal and a drink. As a charitable twist we have asked each person to donate £5 to the charity’s Christmas Lunch campaign.The £5 will pay for one homeless person to have a full Christmas lunch in the warmth and understanding of the charity’s London centre. You, too, can donate £5 for a Christmas lunch here and help a homeless person not to spend Christmas alone.

We learn that Christmas is a time for giving, so give the gift of kindness and find a cause that warms your heart and inspires you to make a difference.

 

 

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On the Twelfth Day of Christmas Bio Fires gave to you … – Win a Prize Every Day in Our #12DaysOfXmas Competition!

Join in the #12DaysOfXmas Giveaway Fun On Facebook and Twitter

We are ready to start the Christmas countdown, how about you? Here at Bio Fires we are spreading the Christmas joy and treating you to a surprise giveaway in addition to our #BioFiresXmas Photo Contest. For the next 12 days up until the 23rd December, we will be offering you a chance to win a daily prize. Join in the Christmas fun and grab your Christmas presents as we count down to the jolliest holiday of the year!

How does it work?

Every day from the 12th to the 22nd December we will post a question on our Facebook and Twitter page as well as on this blog, giving you the chance to win one of our Aura Oils. One lucky winner will be drawn at random daily and will receive an Aura Oil of their choice. On the last day before Christmas Eve, the final winner will be drawn at random from all the entries submitted on Twitter and Facebook between 12th and 22nd December. The final lucky winner of our #12DaysOfXmas Competition will receive our popular White Glass Cube, a beautiful tabletop burner that will bring magic to your winter evenings.

Win a bio ethanol glass cube portable mini burner fireplace.

The final winner of #12DaysOfXmas contest will win a White Glass Cube Burner, a stunning mini fire to dazzle your home this winter.

How to enter the giveaway?

  1. On Facebook: LIKE our Facebook page, LIKE the competition post and send us the answer to the question in a private message or leave a comment. SHARE for extra points and don’t forget to use the hashtag #12DaysOfXmas!
  2. On Twitter: FOLLOW our Twitter profile, FAVOURITE the competition post and RETWEET it. TWEET the answer tagging @GelFireplaces and using the hashtag #12DaysOfXmas.
xmas_competition_960_d8

Enter our daily #12DaysOfXmas competition for a chance to win brilliant prizes.

How well do you know your Christmas trivia?

Day 1 (12 December): In ’The Twelve Days of Christmas’, how many lords are a-leaping?

Day 2 (13 December): What famous celebrity sat next to our fireplace in the pre-Xmas edition of Radio Times (3-9 Dec)?

Day 3 (14 December): What’s the name of the famous Dickens’ Christmas story?

Day 4 (15 December): Which country in the world gets to celebrate Christmas first?

Day 5 (16 December): “The weather outside is frightful but the … is so delightful.” What’s the missing word?

Day 6 (17 December): How many Aura Fragrance Oils are there in our collection?

Day 7 (18 December): Name 8 Santa’s reindeer.

Day 8 (19 December): What is Macaulay Culkin’s name in Home Alone?

Day 9 (20 December): “Last Christmas I gave you my… “ What did George Michael give?

Good luck and Merry Christmas!

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Make your fireplace experience even more delightful with our fragrance oils. If you don’t have one of our fireplaces, you can use Aura Oils in a regular oil diffuser.

Terms and Conditions
1. The competition runs until Friday, 23rd December. Please note: prizes won after the last Christmas shipping date (21/12) will be sent at the beginning of January.

2. One winner per day will be drawn at random from entries submitted on our Facebook and Twitter pages until midnight on the previous day. The last question will be posted on Thursday, 22nd December.

3. On the last day of the competition, the final winner will be drawn at random from all the entries submitted from the 12th to the 23rd December.

4. The final winner will receive the White Glass Cube Burner.

5. Only one entry per person per day is permitted. Bio Fires cannot be held responsible for any undelivered or invalid entries.

6. The competition is exclusive to social media and is open for everyone over 18, based in the UK.

7. The prize is non-transferable and non-exchangeable. There is no cash or credit alternative available.

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Dazzle your guests this Christmas.

7 Fun Christmas Party Ideas

blog_header_guest_writer_beth_finalCelebrate the festive season with our sensational tips for special Christmas parties.

Did you know over 41% of adults are so excited for Christmas Day that they find it hard to fall asleep? Another little known fact is Christmas parties can be just as fun as the big day itself! Christmas is one of the busiest times of year in the home – especially if it’s your turn to host the Christmas party. Here are seven amazing festive ideas for your get-together with friends and family…

1. Pick a theme

Starting off by deciding on a theme is a great way to start organising your Christmas party. Vintage lovers could go for a 1920s art deco theme, 1950s rockabilly theme, 1970s glam rock theme and so on. But if you’re looking for something a bit more niche then you could hold a Hollywood night and turn your home into a cinema or even an entire Winter Wonderland complete with fake snow. Fancy dress is also a good idea – an obvious theme would be Christmas but you could also encourage people to come as their favourite movie characters.

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Why not go for a Christmas movie night for something unique? Picture source: thelovecatsinc.com

2. Dress up your mantelpiece with Christmas decorations

Mantelpieces take on a special significance during the festive season. It’s the place Father Christmas will find milk and cookies (and a carrot for the reindeer!) and makes the perfect place to start with your seasonal decorations! Dress up your mantelpiece with a luscious garland circled with glowing lights and frame this with two ornate candlesticks. Or why not create an adorable nativity scene on the mantelpiece to share the true meaning of Christmas and give your room that cosy, homely vibe.

Freestanding fireplace mantle for Christmas

Create Christmas magic on your mantlepiece with a garland, lights and candles like here on our Carrington Traditional Bio Ethanol Fireplace.

3. Craftmas party

Gather together with your friends at the start of the festive season and host a Christmas decoration crafting session. Suitable for all the family and any age, you could encourage everyone to go for a nature walk and find bits and pieces for your decorations. These pine cone gnomes are surprisingly easy to make and they look beautiful on the mantelpiece!

These pine cone gnomes look beautiful on the mantelpiece!

Get creative at Christmas with these cute pine cone gnomes for the mantelpiece. Picture source: diply.com

4. Good old-fashioned Christmas party games

As well as the obligatory game of charades, there are so many Christmas games you can play with the entire family:

  • Guess the Christmas Song Intro (carols and pop songs!): Play the first 5-10 seconds of a song and have everyone guess what it is.
  • 20 Christmas questions: write down the name of a person or animal associated with Christmas or winter and put it on someone’s forehead. They have 20 questions to guess who it is.
  • Festive Scattergories: Pick a letter and list ten types of Christmas food/drinks/animals within one minute – harder than it sounds!
  • Christmas Bingo
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Have festive fun with Christmas bingo! Picture source: thegirlcreative.com

5. Fun present giving exchanges

Giving and receiving gifts is all part of the fun of Christmas. Why not organise a Secret Santa gift exchange with a twist? This could include purchasing as many presents as possible for £10 (but they actually have to be things the recipient likes!), buying a present that begins with the recipient’s name or even customised gift hampers. You could also go down the DIY route by having everyone make their own gifts. People appreciate handmade gifts because they are aware of how much time and effort goes into making them.

Homemade gifts for Xmas are thoughtful and personal.

Secret Santa is always fun, and everyone appreciates DIY homemade gifts. Picture source: iheartnaptime.net

6. The perfect Christmas playlist

Music really does make the atmosphere at any party – especially a Christmas party. Get everyone to pick their favourite non-Christmas song and favourite Christmas song and create a playlist in advance. This means you’ll have a lovely festive and non-festive playlist suitable for all ages. Don’t forget to add some cheesy favourites you’ll all be able to dance to together such as the Macarena, the Superman Song and Cha Cha Slide.

 Polished Bio Ethanol Fire Grate combines classical and universal style with a contemporary touch

Christmas songs, festive table decor and a cosy fireplace make the perfect Christmas home.

7. Christmas in the air

Embrace the Christmas spirit with some festive scents. If you have an open fire then throw some rosemary onto it and fill the house with gorgeous aromas. If you have one of our bioethanol fires, try out Winter Cinnamon Spice Aura Oil designed to help you create the perfect winter wonderland atmosphere. Scented candles and incense sticks work just as well. Try flavours such as mulberry, cranberry, ginger and nutmeg. Not only do they emit gorgeous scents, they create a relaxed atmosphere and will get almost anyone in a Christmassy mood!

Aura oils work with our bio ethanol fireplaces for a warming ambience.

Try our Winter Cinnamon Spice Aura Oil with your fireplace for a warming comforting ambience.

What are you doing for your Christmas party? Post your festive photos on our Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and win a beautiful prize in our #BioFiresXmas Photo Contest.

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5 different Christmas interior styles for the perfect Xmas home.

5 top Christmas decorating styles for the home

Xuan_guest-writer

Xmas décor ideas to suit every interior style

Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, where the home becomes all the more cosy, magical and festive. Over the many years, our love of Christmas has developed a fantastic array of Christmas decorations, from different shaped baubles, varying patterned tinsel, to topping the tree with a star or angel. We are spoilt for choice when it comes to Christmas decoration, and with the wide variety of styles comes a pinch of confusion. We have compiled the top five different Christmas styles that will suit your home and taste, so you can make the perfect choice this season.

1. Traditional green and red

Green and red are the traditional colours of Christmas that reflect the beautiful hues of the holly, the fir tree, and the robin; the natural symbols of Christmas. The traditional Christmas evokes scenes from old classic Christmas movies, and exudes this special holiday in all its wonderful glory.

Green and red are the traditional colours of Christmas that reflects a beautiful, cosy ambience.

This traditional red home exudes a classic picture perfect Christmas, complete with the cosy homely Roma fireplace.

Decorating in red and green is made easy as most staple Xmas decorations already hold these colours, the green tree, the red and green wreath, the red poinsettia, and the red stockings. Opt for decorative accessories in red, green and gold. Candles, serviettes, Christmas hats, gift-wrapping paper, ornaments, and garlands in these colours will come together to create the ultimate traditional Christmas home.

2. Dreaming of a white Christmas

We all dream of a white Christmas, and a home decorated in white, silver and gold follows the beautiful tones of snow. An elegant and classic look that still radiates a traditional feel. Find inspiration in snowy landscapes and twinkly stars, decorating your home with white pine cones, candles, and warm white fairy lights. A white Christmas tree can look elegant and radiant, glowing with the dazzle of silver and gold baubles.

A white Christmas tree can look radiant, glowing with the dazzle of silver and gold baubles.

White is a beautiful colour for an elegant Christmas home. Picture source: unskinnyboppy.com

3. Go minimal with a Scandi Christmas

The Scandinavians have mastered minimal. A Scandi Christmas is characteristically clean and simple, but still sees the warmth of the festive season with some flourishes of cosiness and quirky details. Embrace natural materials, Chunky knit wool, fleece, cotton and animal furs will add luxurious texture and softness to the simple interior canvas. Homespun touches will also add some Nordic charm to your home, and fairy lights placed around the room will enhance the cosy ambience.

A Scandinavian Christmas is the perfect minimal Xmas home.

A branch tree adorned with Christmas decoration makes a great minimal Xmas tree alternative. Picture source: christmas.365greetings.com

For an alternative tree to suit the minimal look try a sparse branch tree and adorn it with your baubles, tinsel or fairy lights (remembering to keep it simple). It’s unique, elegant, but still festive.

4. Modern magic

If you like things a little different and bold, then a contemporary Christmas home is a special way to stand out. A contemporary Christmas home can go in many different directions in itself, from glitz and glam, to sophisticated and trendy, to quirky and cute. Breaking away from the traditional colours of Christmas is one easy way to modernise your Christmas home. Vivid, bold colours such as blues, purples and pinks will add some fun glam, whilst a monochromatic colour scheme is bold and stylish. Quirky touches with unusual accessories will stand out and show your own character to your décor.

Quirky and cute Christmas decoration for a contemporary Xmas home.

Opt for bold vibrant, fun colours for a modern Xmas decorated home. Picture source: brit.co

5. Rustic charm

A rustic style interior exudes a comforting charm like no other, which makes it a great style for the ultimate cosy Christmas home. Opt for natural materials like wood, the simple soft colours and rustic textures are visually warming. Add cosiness to your home with luscious rich textures. Accents of coloured tartan and other traditional patterns like fairisle will bring some fun Christmas character.

Xmas rustic decor are so homely.

Rustic Christmas homes exude cosiness and comfort. Picture source: inmyinterior.com

Forage the outdoors to find inspiration. Cut wood logs, branches, pinecones, stones and sprigs of pine can all take on a new festive life with simple craft ideas. Burlap and twine are the most perfect crafting materials for a rustic look, or you may want to contrast with the natural colours with a more Christmassy ribbon and glitter. Soft lighting with candles in rustic jars, lanterns varying between different sized lanterns and jars will also add a charming rustic touch. Reindeer antlers above the mantelpiece will complete your Christmas living space for a fantastic focal point.

So which Christmas style will you be going for? Share your Christmas home decor with us, we’d love to see your take on the special holiday.

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