One of the most fun parts of my job is getting to test various products at home. This week I was given two which were very appropriate considering how hot the weather continues to be!
The first was a garden water feature, the Bernini three-tiered water fountain. You might remember that this was a Today's Special Value (TSV) on QVC a few months ago, and it was so popular it's been brought back and will be the TSV again on Sunday 3rd August.
It's self assembly, so I got it home, laid out all the parts and set to work. The first thing I noticed was how clear the instructions were – proper English, not tech-speak, and photos as well as words.
The parts all slot together pretty easily, so it actually only took about 15 minutes from start to finish. Easy!
A couple of tips though, if you're thinking of buying it – despite the clear instructions, I wasted several minutes trying to wedge the door that hides the battery compartment into place, then realised it actually slides in really easily from the right. Also, a watering can is best for filling up the fountain bowls. I tried a hosepipe first but the spray was too forceful, and the water just splashed out of the bowls.
Once completed, it looked lovely sitting on our patio next to our outdoor dining table – a lovely relaxing accompaniment to al fresco dining! I put the rosebud finial on top but it comes with two others as well – a planter, which is very cleverly self-watering, and a cute little pair of birds. It means you can change the look of the fountain whenever you want.
It also has LED lights which illuminate the water flow when you have it switched on at night – magical! This new design has a single push button on/off and there's also a timer function which means you can just forget about it and let it turn itself off and on!
You can move it around the garden as you wish and leave it out in all weathers and all year round. It also comes in three colour options so there's one for every taste. It's so nice to have water in the garden – while I was looking out of the conservatory window I noticed the birds enjoying it too, nipping down for a quick drink or splash, absolutely lovely.
If you bought this Bernini fountain LAST time it was a TSV, we would love to see your photos of it in your garden. Please tweet them to our garden shows on Sunday, and we will show them on air! Tweet your pictures to @qvcuk.
The second item I've been test-driving at home is the Dyson Hot and Cool, which acts both as a room fan AND heater. You'll see it in our Dyson shows on Thursday 7th August. Like all Dyson products, it looks really cool (pictured above left in my conservatory). It's such a clever design because there are no spinning blades like in traditional fans, so it's really safe around children and pets (and clumsy oafs like me). Instead, it's a gorgeous curving loop.
It's also very sturdy – I managed to knock it over twice (told you I was clumsy!) and there wasn't a mark on it. It also turns itself off if it gets knocked over, another safety feature. The temperature ranges from 0 degrees C right up to 28C, so I popped it in the conservatory in the early evening after the sun had been beating down all day, and it did a pretty good job of cooling it down within a few minutes.
My husband kept it on throughout the evening as he watched TV and reported that it was significantly quieter than our old traditional fan. He also liked the dinky little remote control (men and their gadgets, eh!) which means you can adjust the temperature without leaving your armchair!
We brought it up to the bedroom for the night (above left), and although I turned it off a few hours later, I reckon that on a very hot night you could keep it on throughout as it is reasonably quiet, certainly quieter than other fans I've tried sleeping with. I must admit I haven't yet tried it as a heater – might be a few months before I need that! But if it heats as efficiently as it cools, I'll be impressed. I think it's brilliant that it does both – saves you buying two products and saves on space too.
Look out for these two items on QVC. I enjoyed them both!
Love Jackie x