Thursday, 30 March 2017

Korean Curtains and Blinds

Initially, we would like to selected curtains and blinds based on the colors for the rooms and matching it with the designs. Not to mentioned that they'll accompany us for shopping, Sky Creation kept us waiting for the 3D drawings for 5 weeks and came out not what we wanted. We assumed that they won't waste the time knowing that we'd paid deposits and they won't earn commission from the suppliers.

So, we went to Wink Curtains to select the designs we like. They'd already took the measurements one month ago. They were quite surprised as we still haven't received the 3D, because the sales guy went to our house on the same day that our ID came to take measurements too.

Anyway, they managed to expedite our order done within 2 weeks and had the curtain and blinds installed on the day we move in. Phew... we almost had to stay in the aquarium with no privacy as people could see clearly our house through the glass windows.

We went to EXPO for Furniture Fair and something interesting caught our eyes hen the sales guy introduced us Unislat Korean Curtain.

 Impressive and smartly combining of day and night curtains into a piece of fabric
where you can easily adjustable amount of light streaming into the room.

It helps to circulate the air in the room and filter out harsh
light and heat while leaving the windows open.


Love the way I can walk pass through every single panel
of each fabric without the need to open the curtain.

With variety of choices, you can mix and match with  
different patterns of fabric or colors.

 We selected Arch pattern with combination colors of
 Charcoal - Coffee - Charcoal.

Soft and light material and make the room looks airy.
It's also coated with anti-pollutant to prevent dust and dirt.

The sales guy suggested us to store the curtain together at one side, 
instead of separated them at both sides. 

Therefore you can see the combination colors of Charcoal - Coffee - Charcoal and not only Charcoal and Coffee. As we planned to do the cabinet on the left wall, we draw the curtain to the right wall. Mostly the curtain position is like the above photo which covering 1/4 of the windows.
For Master bedroom, we prefer to use Roman Blinds like our previous house.

This Roman Roller Blinds is way more advance. It's like a big piece of canvas without seeing the partitions using the roller. The roller mechanism is made in Germany which  easier and smooth to pull out without need to use much strength.

Unlike normal fabric, they use something like faux leather which is more stylish
and able to screen out 99% of light. Total privacy as nobody can see through it.

Korean Blinds for my daughter's room.

My daughter like purple color, so we got her this new design
Pleated design (CB951 Purple) for her room.

There are few new collections of Korean blinds, which come with more colors.
This blind has 3 shades of blue instead just one color and mesh.

 Korean Blinds - 3D Nature (CB457 Blue).
Pleated blind and Unislat curtain same price, and this nature blind is cheaper. Frankly speaking, I prefer this one than pleated blind. The colors look nicer from the outside, whereas pleated blind not so obvious.

But we had a small problem with the roller, the installer guy told us that the blind is too heavy for such a big window. He said it's better to have 2 rollers and make a small roller for the window that can be opened. It's too late as the sales guy who should have experience said it's alright to just have one roller in this room.

Total cost for installing curtains and blinds: $3,300

Wink Curtain Pte Ltd.
59 Ubi Avenue 1, #07-20
Bizlink Centre 
Singapore 408938
Tel: 68585055

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Bad Experience with Sky Creation Asia Pte Ltd

Make a big change is pretty scary, but regret is even scarier! It's better to look back and say: "I can't believe we did that." than to look back and say: "I wish we did that."

It took lots of considerations and careful calculation on our financial stand to decided to purchase this bank-breaking condo as our new nest.

We're lucky that the seller of this condo allowing us for early move-in. It's considered as short term rental as we paid a bit higher, but it did solve our problem as we didn't want to move twice.

After signing Sale and Purchase Agreement, the next was to look for the interior designer. Although this condo TOP a year ago, but it's a new unit as Seller never stay and rent it out. It's to our preference because it allowed us to renovate the way we like it. The main purpose of the renovation is to make more storage places as this condo is smaller in size.

Facebook seemed to detect that I was searching for ID, and inserted a lot of ID firms on the ads. That's how I ended up registered a slot to visit Musée - Singapore 1st Interior Design Resource Library & Renovation Experiential Centre.

25 Sep 2016:
We arrived early at Musée Museum to see what kind of materials and to get some ideas for our home interior before we to EXPO to meet few interior designers there.

The receptionist assigned us the interior designer and told us that she'll bring us touring around. She then introduced Sky Creation Design Pte Ltd. She told us Musée appointed them as they're so called the best ID in Singapore with all the certificates, awards and case trust.

She printed out the floor plan downloaded from the developer website, then jotted down our requirements such as storage space in living room, platform bed for my gal's bedroom and loft bed for my son's bedroom.

To cut the story short, after 5 hours of long talk with her and her boss because we supposed to get few quotations to compare first. They claimed that we might not be able to get such a low price to match our budget in Singapore, we ended up signed the package of $11,770 with no additional or hidden cost. We paid a deposit of $2,000 and they promised to show us the 3D image of our son's bedroom and living room in 7 - 10 days. On the same days, I sent to her some of the designs of the loft bed that I showed to them earlier.

4 Oct 2016:
Arranged with my agent to borrow the key from the seller so that our ID can go to take the exact measurements. Seller's agent was very helpful to get us the floor plan knowing that we're planning for renovation.

7 Oct 2016:
Sent some designs that we like to her, discussed on the lightings and checked on the cost for decking for planter area.

31 Oct 2016:
It has been a month since our first meeting, therefore I asked for the 3D draft and floor plan to scale so I can purchase lights that enough brightness for each room.

2 Nov 2016:
Finally received 3D for Living room and my son's bedroom, but I was totally disappointed to see them after such a long waiting...

   What is this?!! Totally not what I described which the mirror 
and pop-out stripes as what I showed and sent to them.

This is actually the example of what I don't want which I told them that I don't want boring square or rectangular as it'll be 18 feet long cabinet in full height from floor to ceiling.

It seems like this 3D not customised for us, because they asked us to send the images for all the lights, fan and curtain, but didn't put them in. Not even the colors that we wanted the cabinet and walls. They claimed the final look will be at least 90% similar to the 3D. So, thanks and no... I don't want my house to look like this.

 Another big sigh seeing this, as it's like copying 3D image from 
Design Chapter as shown below... 

She even told us that the bookshelves on the right were just for the drawing to make it look aesthetic. So the final product will be only a wooden board as the study table with no drawers.  It's just a 'wow'!

If it's better than I have nothing to say, but please compare these 2 designs...

There's no railing for the stairs, no lights under the loft bed. Actually, I was thinking whether it's appropriate to tell ID that light is needed for study area? Afraid that I might offend her as she's the ID and should be expertise in designing not only making the room looks nice and also serves its functions. But, it's looks like the other way round...

Frankly speaking, if these are the designs, I don't need an ID. I'll just look for a carpenter to save the cost, and he might be able to fabricate something much much better than the living room cabinet and do the exact design for my son's room based on 3D from Design Chapterz.

7 Nov 2016:
Arranged to meet up with her as it's too difficult to email her with all the details. Although I was quite angry and disappointed, but my hubby said to give her another chance because we can ask her to redo the 3D. We asked her to accompany us to select the curtain. But, after the meeting, she didn't join us and just told us that most of the colors will match black and white.

8 - 14 Nov 2016:
Sent to her more details for the designs and curtains we chose and chased her for the 3D...

16 Nov 2016:
We're told that there will be extra cost for using mirror for cabinet door. They told us that we can use any materials and designs we want before we signed the contract.

Since we agreed that we can't cancel the contract, we told her that we'll just use the whole deposit to do my son's bedroom.

And instead of the revised 3D drawing my son's loft bed, they sent us quotation for it. As all in price with no hidden cost or additional charges, we didn't expect to see the bill as we clearly told our requirements and even showed them photos.

She gave excuses that for the whole contract, they can squeeze in the cost, bla bla bla...

I asked her to arrange an appointment to meet with her boss, the one who convinced us that they'll take care everything for our renovation.

17 Nov 2016:
Contacted her to request for full refund because when I tried to measure study shelves for the study room. Somehow when I looked up I found out that impossible to do a loft bed in my son's room due to the beam (which is reinforcement for bay window and floor storage for upper unit), which I didn't notice that it was not the same as my daughter's room which is same size as bay window's width.

She told us that no full refund as the will be admin charge and 3D drawings fee. Really? First of all it's not my fault, we're actually forced to sign the contract. Then, as a ID, she did measure everything and didn't even know that it's impossible to do the loft bed? But, she still insisted that she could fit the loft bed!
That afternoon I went to EXPO to get 3 quotations from others ID firms so that we could transfer another ID without further delay should we decide to get refund.

The first ID firm just wrote down our requirements and told us that he will quickly do some space management knowing that I need lots of storage. He asked us to meet him on Monday, so he can do a draft and discuss the cost.

We didn't go for the second meeting although he told us that he could match our budget, but he's honest to let us know that we couldn't expect the best materials for everything, but  he'll try to get good enough material because he wanted to take our project and challenge himself as he never do loft bed before.

The second ID quoted us a rocket high of $60,000 for the same things with a lifetime warranty on the workmanship. He seemed not so interested in this small project after I told him that we'll be only doing living room cabinet and platform because we'd signed up with another ID. He told us that he heard a lot about Sky Creation, and they have clients that have similar case like me went to them after waiting for more than 6 months.

The last ID told me that for the platform bed and living room, he could give us almost the same price as quoted by Sky Creation, but for loft bed it's impossible because he didn't want to take the risk that the loft bed collapse if he didn't put extra support on the both side of the bed, because it's board wall and not concrete wall.

19 Nov 2016:
Met her boss and seemed that he could easily settle everything in less than 30 minutes. He told us that it's misunderstanding about the mirror door, and he promised to get us new 3D drawings based on what we want. He'll take over our project and he assigned another designer to assist him too.

We told her boss that we just went to get 3 quotations, and indeed Sky Creation still the cheapest. But, we would like the renovation to have no hiccups and no further delay. He assured us that no problem to complete it before CNY. He also agreed that it's impossible to make loft bed, so we agreed to change it to platform bed.

We thought that boss really could do things differently with his experiences and decision making...

23 Nov 2016:
We received 3D drawing for the living room, though it's still not what we want, but the design is much better. The file was deleted as it's sent through Whatsapp.

26 Nov 2016:
The electricians came to install lights for the whole house. The boss and another ID came to take measurements too.

Living room - 42' LED Crystal Fan Light.

It's adjustable to white, warm white and white +  warm white light. 

Master Bedroom - 60 cm Modern Crystal Light.

The electrician only installed the fixture up, and we left us with more than 400 parts to fix up. Didn't know that they came in such a small parts, else for sure I won't buy it. It's crazily time-consuming to combine 4 parts to one before hanging them. Not only that, I'd no choice but to climb the stairs to hang the parts as my hubby said his legs trembling.

Not obvious right if I didn't circle those that left out with no sticks?

Almost broke my neck and arms for putting the sticks on the holes properly and make sure they won't drop down. See... I should be awarded as the best handyman!

LED light is adjustable to desired mood and ambience.

LED Crystal Chandelier for dining room.

The light should be paralell with aircon and dining table.
But, the electrician already sealing up the cables.

Another troublesome light, but this was nothing compared to master bedroom one.
Although this need a bit of strength to clip the crystals and heavier.
But at least I could hold the wall for support, instead of balancing
my whole body just with with legs.

Daughter's Bedroom - 32 inch Retro Wooden Fan Light.

LED light with 2 options of lights and 3 speeds for fan.

Simple round lamp with speaker for my son's room.

The speaker can connect to the phone to play their favorite musics and adjust the brightness, colors, transitition when changing colors and even can follow the rythm of the music.

Check out this video to see Xuan and Zhi dancing happily after the room was renovated.

Retro Industrial Steel Chandelier.

Kitchen has 2 light points, and because our previous fengshui told us that it's better to have odd number of lights in the room, so we added another point.
Bought 3 different shapes instead of same shape and spacing them equally in the kitchen.

Modern Iron Wrought Chandelier.

These 2 single head should be for the corridor, and the 3 heads one should be for the entrance foyer. We didn't notice that there's another light point in master bedroom, and we thought that there's a point at the balcony. 

However, the 3 head disc lamp was too low and the door will bang to it when it's open. So, it's not suitable to put near the door.  

Great that I selected the similar lights for corridor and foyer, and now they line up at the corridor leading to master bedroom. 

Since there's no light point, we use this outdoor light for foyer area.

Well, there's no problem for installing the lights, just that we didn't know that the electricians not helping with the chandeliers parts. 

I bought the whole house lights from Taobao through Ezbuy Prime. Only spent about $1,000+ including GST, agent and shipping fees. But it's not included LED light for the cabinet and  installation fees which all of them.

2 Dec 2016:
Met them at the office to see the 3D drawings, but again they told us that their server suddenly collapsed and all the data gone!

But he asked us to pay 95% as they'd already take the measurements. I was amused that he dared to ask money first when I didn't see the 3D drawings.

I told my hubby to read from a blog from another customer that had a renovation nightmare. Added that what I heard from others IDs about their bad reputation and didn't complete their projects. Didn't wish to see my money go down the drain and waste my time.

I think they just repeated the same things, buying times by throwing you from one to another ID and giving you endless excuses...

4 Dec 2016:
After confirmed that the ID from De Style Interior willing to take our project, I texted the boss we didn't want to wait for the 3D anymore, and just use the balance of the the deposit to paint the whole house.

13 Dec 2016
Went to Sky Creation office to check whether we need to top up for electrical and painting job. He told us that there's still balance. We asked him to arrange the painter the soonest.

1 Feb 2016:
Request to arrange painter as we need to start the renovation work. I'd to chase them every few days just to get them to arrange for painter to come just few days before we started our carpentry works.

Sent her mesages almost everyday until she confirmed that the painters will come down the next day.

10 Feb 2016:
One of the painters came around 10am, and started to move all the items and covering the items with enormous plastic, paste masking tape for the corners.

I was quite satisfied and felt bad for him, as he needed to move heavy stuffs... Then only the boss of the painters came to deliver stairs and 3 tins of paints.

Then we discussed on the planter area, as I wanted to get it painted also. But, I'd to check with management for the color code, so had to get back to them.

  One painter use Nippon Matex to paint the ceiling...

 Another one use Nippon Vinilex 5000 for wall sealant.
Click here for more photos and videos.

But the guy painting for wall was just anyhow paint. If you can see he didn't paint the corner, and some of the parts also not covered with paint. 

I thought that they'll apply second coat. But they didn't, and the guy painted the wall told me since I need to cover it with wallpaper and the base also white color, nobody will see it!

Oh ok, I do know that noone will see it, but I paid to apply sealant because wallpaper will stick better on the sealant so it'll last longer. I was quite angry and insisted that him to paint the corner. 

The other guy was quite ok, he did put second coat just for the living room as I told him that some of the parts not covered properly.

18 Feb 2017:
Told the ID the color for planter area is Nippon Paint Weatherbond White Color BS 00E55. But, she told me that need to add $250. 

If the cost of installing lights about $300 as what her boss told us, then we paid $1,700 for painting, which was the most expensive item for the whole renovation. They only used up about half a tin of 20L paint for whole house.

20 Feb 2017:
Again, it's so difficult to confirm the painting job, as she told me that they arrange job at midnight!

21 Feb 2017:
Told me that the guy will come at 10am, but waited until 3pm. It's another guy and only painted the planter area and touched up those dirty area on the ceiling. Then he told me he had to go else the management will chase him out, and left me with a brush so I can do the touch up myself. 

Again, I had no choice to touch up because the next morning we need to install wallpaper. 

Please avoid this Interior design company by all means although they seem to be a reputable one. Don't waste your time and listen to their sweet and up to the sky promises of no additional or hidden cost. Their design not as great as what they claimed too. I think we all deserve a smooth renovation journey even though it's just a small project.