Posts Tagged With: wallbed

Why Blog About Wallbeds?

Why Blog About Wallbeds?

Wallbed Blog

Blog type

Because, people looking for wallbeds or Murphy Beds can find us pretty easily.  It is reaching the people who DON’T KNOW they need us that is the trick.

Many times while working at our display in Costco, we would hear, “I didn’t know they still made those!” “What is that?” “I never thought about that.”

These are who we are trying to reach with our blog:

  • People who are frustrated with their current unused guest room.
  • People who are downsizing and can’t see having a bed take up so much space 24/7.
  • People who live in studio apartments and want it to feel like a one bedroom.
  • Retirees.  Students. Newlyweds.  Single folks.
  • For occasional use or daily use.

We have been getting pointers from both The Sales Lion and The Story of Telling.  We are trying to balance informative with anecdotal entries in order to answer those “out there” kind of questions. Let us know if there is anything you would like us to answer…in regards to wallbeds or Murphy Beds.

Now you see it. Now you DON’T!

We are the Great American Wallbed Co. in Bellevue, WA.

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Categories: Space Saving Wallbeds, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Do I NEED a Murphy Wallbed?

Do I Need a Murphy Wallbed?

I just came back from a fabulous visit to my homeland, Norway (see About). When I emigrated those may years ago, the nation was just a land “up there under the eternal snow.” The economy was a notch above struggle and traveling to the exotic was given to sailors.  Birds of Paradise and whispering palms belonged in dreams on frigid winter nights, exclusively.

Prosperous Norway However…

Things have changed…drastically!  Today Norwegians are on top of the heap, flushed with cash, passports filled with stamps from exotic places, and Audis in the garage.  They have become a “Needless Society”.  From my vantage point I can see questionable trade-offs.  But as a visitor I’m hardly qualified to judge.

“Needless Economy”

When I saw this expression for the first time, I realized what I’m up against when writing this blog. I’m writing about Murphy wallbeds, closet beds, vertical wallbeds, horizontal wallbeds, and the practicality of such product.  Yet, in a Needless Economy, i.e. ”I-have-no-need-of-stuff attitude,” MY readers still buy stuff.  Philosophize with me and ask yourself, “How lasting is the giddy feeling of indulging in a week’s vacation in, say, Europe, vs. changing out a stationary in-the-way rarely-used bed?”

Take the Vacation

…after you decide to go for a Murphy wallbed.  While you are checking out old castles,  or having pastry and a cup of coffee (no free refills, please!) for the equivalence of $ 35.00, http://www.mamis.no/  your wallbed is being installed back home, ready to give you a lasting thrill for your hard-earned money!

I wish you a great experience and lasting, exhilarating feelings!

Now you see it. Now you DON’T!

We are the Great American Wallbed Co. in Bellevue, WA.

Categories: Adding a Wall Bed or Murphy Bed, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Economy of Space

If you are looking for a wallbed or Murphy Bed in the greater Seattle area, it is pretty easy to find us.  The challenge we face in our business, is making ourselves known to folks who DON’T KNOW they are looking for a wallbed! One of our main purposes of blogging is to try to stimulate discussions and get people thinking about how their space is being utilized. Once the evaluation starts, questions and solutions are going to follow.

I love Make: magazine. Their projects are always interesting and they are famous for “hacking.”  Hacking is where you take something (i.e. an old TV console) and turn it into something new or more efficient (an aquarium). Last week they presented an over-sized example of a fabulous hack.  The town of York, Alabama lacked an outdoor community space.  The town had many abandoned houses and overgrown lots.  One of these houses was chosen, materials were salvaged to reuse in the rebuild, and a design was picked. They built a new little house, in the same style as the other houses in town but here is the cool part: It UNFOLDS into outdoor seating for 100! Here is the video:

And here is the article: http://makezine.com/2013/08/19/open-house-no-really/

When the seating is not needed, the house folds back up and tucks away!!  The lot it sits on, is now a park and enjoyed folks daily.  Much more so, than if the seating was taking up the space all the time! This is Economy of Space applied!  It is not complicated to operate. The footprint when it is closed vs. when it is opened is about 1:5.  It can be used as often or seldom as needed. Wait…are we talking about a Community Center or a wallbed?! Can you see how that way of thinking: breaking down the functions within a set space; can help revise how you see and use your own space?

Another way to look at the Economy of Space is through the actual costs. How much does your home cost to run every month (mortgage+insurance+electricity+repairs+gas…)? Divide that by the square footage of your home. That gives you the “$/sq. foot/ month” ($) value of your space. Now, measure your guest room in square feet (g).  Here’s where it gets interesting. Multiply ($) x (g) x 12= the cost of your guest room per year ($Y). NOW, divided that by how many days a year that room is used (U). The cost per day of use will be ($Y)/(U) Let’s say it costs $1.25/sq. foot; and your guest room is 11’x8’ or 88 sq. feet;  and there are 12 months in the year; and guests stay there 11 days a year: ($1.25)x(88)x(12)+=($Y)=$1320… $1320/11=$120!

Let me explain that to you: you are spending $1320 a year for a room that is used 11 times. Every time it is used, it costs $120! Now let’s change one thing: the configuration of the room into home office/ reading room. Let’s swap the regular queen sized bed, which takes up a huge part of the real estate of that room, for a wallbed. Set up the office and cozy chair. Now, how often will you use this room? In a year, let’s say 243 days. Our ($Y)/(U) equation now becomes: $1320/243= $5.43!!  Doesn’t that make more sense (or cents)?? Welcome to the Economy of Space!

A writer was talking about storing things in their home and wrote this: “…but that got me thinking about how much our space costs us. I figured that we pay approximately $1.65 per square foot per month for our space. This means that if something is taking up 1 square foot of space but it’s value is low, over time we basically lose money because the value of the item taking up the space is worth less than what we pay for the space. Additionally, the more efficiently we can use the space the better value we are getting for our money.” –shannonkay from gspn.tv forum

So there you go- hacking, math and economics! Mr. Z was right! Story problems are everywhere!

Now you see it. Now you DON’T!

We are the Great American Wallbed Co. in Bellevue, WA.

Categories: Linked Businesses, Space Saving Wallbeds, Wallbed / Murphy Bed Costs | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What is Particle Board?

Particle board has gotten a bad rap over the years and is commonly thought of as sub-par or inferior to “real wood.” Guess what particle board is made of…..ready?….Real Wood!

Particle board is maybe from the byproducts of wood used in the timber industry. It is shredded and dried then mixed with adhesives.  This mixture is rolled out and pressed under great force and heat into long sheets of standard thicknesses.  The sheets are cut to length then stacked and ready to be used.  In the past, formaldehyde was a key ingredient in the adhesive but that is no longer the case.

Particle Board Examples

Particle Board Examples

The pressing of the material is varied to create different densities of material. Think about those Space Bags which are used for storing clothes. Put a sweater in one and seal it up. Measure the thickness and feel how floppy the bag is.  Now, open it up and fill it with 4 more sweaters. Vacuum the air out until it is as thick as the bag with one regular sweater.  As you pull the air out, the sweaters compress and the contents become denser.  Pick it up now.  It is the same thickness as the other, but I bet it is not as floppy as the uncompressed single sweater.  The same goes for particle board.  We use a grade which is denser than regular-use material.  This makes for a stronger wallbed cabinet for our customers.

After the particle board is ready it is covered, repressed and heated with decorative papers and come out looking like a whole forest of wood varieties.  Or they can be solid colors, patterned… the possibilities are endless!  These finished boards handle a lot of wear and clean up easily with mild soap and water.

Many advances have been made across the industry to insure the product is durable and safe.  We use products which have been certified by FSC- The Forest Stewardship Council.  The FSC, ”sets standards for responsible forest management. A voluntary program, FSC uses the power of the marketplace to protect forests for future generations.”  (https://us.fsc.org/index.htm)

Now you see it. Now you DON’T!

We are the Great American Wallbed Co. in Bellevue, WA.

Categories: Wallbed Attributes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Wallbeds and Pets

Are there such things as wallbeds for dogs and cats? Yes there are!  Unfortunately, we don’t make them (at this time) but here is a place where you can find them.  Or you can even build your own with directions found here.

The subject of cat and dogs is close to our hearts here at the Great American Wallbed Co.  If you ever stop by to check out of selection of wallbeds, one special helper will gladly show you how to relax on top of the covers or sometimes UNDER the covers. Kitty has been helping us demonstrate our beds for about 5 years now. She is part Maine Coon and is not a tiny cat. Kitty’s early years are a secret but five years ago she was adopted by our fearless leader, Robert, and has been greeting folks ever since.

Dad and Kitty

Thanks for Adopting!

One day Robert decided he wanted a cat.  Robert’s wife, Heidi, was not as keen on the idea.  A short while later, Robert visited a locksmith who happened to have a ‘shop cat’ and he figured he could do the same!  He went out to Homeward Bound, in Woodinville, WA, and was taken by a huge fluffball who had been passed over by many others.  She was too big, all grown up, not a wee little kitten… But when she brushed up against his leg, that was all it took.  Kitty had a new home.

She greets us when we arrive each day, plays with her toys and keeps us company when we work late.  She does have a feisty side- woe to you if you are petting her and dare to stop!  The high point of her day is when the mail arrives.  Bonnie, the mail carrier brings her treats and gives her a scratch or two.  Sad is the day when someone other than Bonnie is driving the truck and there aren’t any treats. She looks at them with undisguised disdain.  They are driving the truck and bringing the mail- therefore the treats should be there as well!

The rescues and shelters of FULL of special critters just like Kitty who would love to keep you company.  Please take an afternoon and find yourself a buddy.

I will leave you with two important tips:

Adopt, don’t Shop!

“Help control the pet population: Have your pet spayed or neutered.” (Thanks Bob Barker!)

We are The Great American Wallbed Co. in Bellevue, Washington.

Now you see it. Now you don’t!

Categories: Accessories, Linked Businesses | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Murphy Beds Tell a Story

Once upon a time, Murphy Beds used to be built into apartments, just like ceiling light fixtures, radiators and the kitchen sink.  That was when space was a premium.  People had to be creative if they wanted a place to sleep and a place to socialize.  There were several variations and many even pivoted!  If you have ever visited an apartment from the 1930’s you may have seen a large brass ring in the floor and in the ceiling. These were leftover hardware from the pivoting beds. Many times they had wardrobes hanging from the back. A catalog from 1925 can be found here.  The drawings are WONDERFUL!

Closet Murphy Bed

Closet Murphy Bed

Along the way, people wanted more space and walled-in bedrooms became the norm.  Then the thinking continued- if there is a bed, it must be in its own room, and that room must just be for the bed.  As people spread out and built bigger homes that seemed to work. We became accustomed to having single purpose rooms and eventually had rooms that were only used a few times a year.  The problem became obvious when people started to economize and realized that while they only used the room a few days a year, they paid for it EVERY DAY! with heating, mortgage, cleaning… What to do!?

RE-ENTER the Murphy Bed.  Instead needing to move because you want a home office and a guest room and place to work out, make your investment work for you! You already have the space in that lonely guest room.  Install a wallbed, add a built-in desk to the corner, and bring in the treadmill! The closet can be used for storing weights, office supplies and bedding. You may have to push a couple things to the side when folks come to visit, but when they leave again, you have room to work!

The story told by Murphy wallbeds is this: Be practical. Multi-use is smarter than single purpose.  What’s old is new again.  Even the Wall Street Journal thinks so!

Now you see it. Now you don’t!

We are the Great American Wallbed Co. of Bellevue, Washington!

 

Categories: Space Saving Wallbeds, Wallbed Attributes | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Affordable Space Solutions for Boomerang Kids

Does investing in a Murphy Wallbed make sense when grads must live with their parents?  Is your college graduate returning without a job yet, and need a place to stay?  A wallbed can be the solution to your (hopefully!) temporary problem.

Today’s headline reads that 21 million, (that is: 21 x 1,000 x 1,000!!!) children between the ages of 18 and 31 live at home with their parents.  You may be one such parent.  (August 2013)

Home  sweet home!

Home sweet home!

Most likely a returning son or daughter might find his/her room converted into an office or re-done in some fashion to suit your practical needs.  A standard room with even a twin bed might be hopelessly small when piled up with suitcases and boxes full of books and your offspring’s personal belongings.

Why not exchange the old bed for a Murphy wallbed? Add a desktop and a cabinet or file drawer while you’re at it?

A Pivoting Library Murphy Bed is the most practical and perfect answer to your circumstances!

However, whether you choose Horizontal or Vertical Platform wall unit or go for a Library bed, your family will whole-heartedly embrace you for being proactive!  Your insight brings satisfaction and keeps both order and harmony in the family!

The day will come when your son or daughter lands that job and moves into his/her own domain.  The wallbed can move, too, and whatever cabinetry as well!  It gives them a head start on furnishing their living space!  In addition, it gives you an opportunity to find a new use for the abandoned room.  Maybe get another wallbed?

And for friends who read and bring a printed copy of this blog to The Great American Wallbed Co., they will receive $ 100.00 in-house discount!  We care!

We are The Great American Wallbed Co. in Bellevue, Washington!

Now you see it.  Now you don’t!

Categories: Space Saving Wallbeds, Wallbed / Murphy Bed Costs | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Murphy Student Wallbed Best Solution for Student Living

Time is here for getting settled into Student Living.  You made the grade, the college accepted you, and you’re packin’.

Great!

Universities and Colleges are not easy streets.  Lots of study time is required of you to make the grades.  The competition is tough out there.  Only the most disciplined students land accolades (that is French for tributes, praises, honors, awards, compliments, rave reviews) that will impress hiring staff, head hunters, and the like.  The rest can count on spending time with McD’s or as baristas (NO, that is NOT the same as barristers, check it out.)

dorm

My point is this:  a responsible student needs good sleep.  Not necessarily a lot of sleep, but when in bed, “sound sleep” is what counts. Our Student Wallbed gives you that!  It has been tested under the most emotionally stressful situations, (I’m not at liberty to reveal where at this time.) We have testimonies from a variety of grateful people of how incredibly comfortable this wallbed model is!

One great advantage with our Student Wallbed is the narrower footprint. It handles surprisingly well. We include the mattress, which is of superior quality and designed especially to alleviate stress.  Add a fold-out table on the front panel of the Vertical model, and you have a desk. The top of the Horizontal bed cabinet can serve as a utility shelf for a monitor, pens, pencil holders, books, etc.

And the bonus is more floor space for throwing your clothes, backpack and bike!

Your Student Wallbed is a winner all around!  “Now You See It. Now You Don’t!”

We are The Great American Wallbed Co. in Bellevue, WA!

Image courtesy of: The Lovely Side

 

Categories: Adding a Wall Bed or Murphy Bed, Space Saving Wallbeds | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Isn’t it Cheaper to Use an Air Mattress in a Murphy Wall Bed?

The short and sweet answer to this^ question is: Yes. However, the questions should have been: Why can’t I use an air mattress in a wallbed?

airmattressSeveral times at Costco we were asked about using air mattresses in our wallbeds. In fact, when we had our very first Special Event there, we used air mattresses for our display… for ONE day! We thought it would be a great idea and quickly realized it was not! The “queen sized” mattress was actually a few inches shorter than a proper mattress and shifted in the frame. The vinyl mattress smelled of…vinyl! and the sheets kept slipping off (even though it was a velour one). And then there were the noises!! Every time we raised and lowered the beds, the mattress would burp and squeak and make other totally inappropriate sounds! It was a nightmare!

We understand that many times the questions came from an economical position.  You want to invest in a wallbed, but want to be frugal and smart, especially if it is only for occasional use. In a way, an air mattress is similar to a wallbed: when you are done, you fold it up and tuck it away! But wait! You want an extra bed for the occasional night when YOU might need to sleep there (instead of the doghouse perhaps?). Do YOU want to spend the night squeaking, slipping and sinking (what is that hiss?!?) or do you want a good night’s sleep?

A decent mattress is not very expensive and you can probably find a good one on Craigslist for very little. We like to send people to Mattress Depot because their prices are fair and they don’t sell them like a used car. When you go for the wallbed, take that last step and use a real mattress with it.  Our wallbeds are designed to work with the weight of a mattress so make sure it is on site when we install yours.

Your guests will thank you and you will pat yourself on the back when you end up there one night.  And here is a tip: mark anniversaries and birthdays on new calendars as soon as you get them.

We are The Great American Wallbed Co. in Bellevue, WA. Check here for pricing, dimensions and product info. Thank you!

Image by Wally Torta.

Categories: Comfort, Wallbed / Murphy Bed Costs | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Can My Murphy Wallbed be Moved to a New Location?

The other day a homeowner called with this concern, “I own a Vertical Wall bed, and I really would love to move it into my new home.  Is it possible, or must I sell it with this home and buy a new one?”

nuts and boltsWell, happy day!  This owner had bought the wallbed from us a couple of years ago at one of our Costco Special Events/Road Shows! Since it was one of our own wallbeds, we could confidently take the bed apart and reconstruct it in her new home. We charge a fee for this service but it is very reasonable and will be done quickly. If you are moving far away (we sent one to Singapore!) we can pack it up with all the parts, and give you instructions so you can re-install it yourself.

When you check out my blog about the integrity of the material used in our Murphy Library Beds and Vertical and Horizontal Panel beds you’ll understand why.

As long as the material used in the construction of a Murphy Wallbed is of furniture grade, and is not glued together, your wallbed can absolutely be moved from its existing space till a new location! This is why wallbeds are great solutions for RENTERS as well as HOMEOWNERS!

But wait, there’s another way of looking at this.  If you choose to leave your Murphy Wallbed behind, it will add value to the sale and benefit to the new owners.  Furthermore, you can go shopping for a new Murphy Wallbed!  Think about it;   a change of color, or some added cabinets that fit snugly into your new home will transform an ordinary room into fabulously functionally chic (French for stylish) space!  In fact, the result may be so satisfying that you never want to move again!

But if you must move, remember: Yes!  It can move with you!

Categories: Adding a Wall Bed or Murphy Bed, Installation | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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