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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Drapery Panels Are Multi-Functional

In many of my staging projects I have removed dated or worn drapery panels from windows as well as those that are far too short in length. Windows look better bare than dressed poorly.

In addition to enhancing a room's decor or creating privacy from the outside world, drapery panels are multifunctional. Take a look at this bedroom that was closetless. I reused one of the rods from a window that was dressed with dated drapery panels that hung too high off the ground- placed it across an alcove and created a closet.



To hide the very large stacked washer/dryer which was housed in a shower stall turned appliance alcove in the main floor powder room of that same property, another set of drapery panels and a reclaimed rod were used. The solution not only softened the look of the room and hid both the unsightly appliances and wall tile that was at odds with the floor tile, but further was an inexpensive fix .




In the Atlantic provinces of Canada we are lucky to have a number of Wicker Emporium stores to provide us with high end looking drapery panels at low end pricing. The closet draperies were on sale for 10.00 a panel and the powder room drapes were 20.00 a panel.

Design Tip: Think outside the package when it comes to drapery panels. You'll be sure to garner a Rave Re:view.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Waking Up A Tired Bathroom

I had a good day today helping one of my fellow stagers prepare an occupied property that is just about to be listed in Halifax. She asked me if I'd mind showcasing the bathrooms and I responded that I love doing bathrooms. As a matter of fact my daughter, an architect, has dubbed me the 'Bathroom Queen'. She is impressed with the way I transform nondescript bathrooms into spa like retreats without renovating or updating the existing space. I rely on my best friend 'paint' and the many accessories, pieces of wall art, towels and drapery panels turned shower curtains that I am amassing.










In the bathroom above , the stained counter top and chipped sink had to be replaced as did the faucet and taps. There is an alternative now available in Nova Scotia to replacing counter tops and chipped sinks and tubs. Check out the Enviromedic web site. Their process can be used to revive tired ceramic wall and floor tiles as well! Next time, to save labour costs and the mess of replacing sinks and counter tops, I'm going that route.

If you can't afford to renovate a tired bathroom, I'd love to help you wake it up and garner many a Rave Re:view. If you want to start from scratch I'd be more than happy to help you as well!

Monday, May 10, 2010

More Paint Pointers

I just Picked up the latest issue of Style At Home magazine and one of their articles is all about
'The Power of Paint". I feel like everyone will think that I latched on to their idea when truly the timing is coincidental !!

I want to share a few more photos that attest to the power of paint and how it highlights or hides a property's features.

The feel of this powder/laundry room was made more tranquil when the baseboards, the radiator and the transition into the appliance alcove ( once a shower) were painted the wall colour (Cable Knit by Benjamin Moore).



The master bedroom walls were originally mauve. I have no issue with mauve walls and if I was wearing my decorating hat and my clients loved mauve I would create the mauve room of their dreams. But this house was being staged and so out came the can of warm neutral paint ( Cable Knit) and once again paint's power can be seen. Doesn't it look like new wider trim was added to the window frame. Not so! Same trim , same window -new look achieved with a coat of Benjamin Moore's Simply White.



Painting the nondescript basic wooden doors white creates a soothing, cleaner, richer, fresher, new look for the master bedroom.





While I am a fan of rusty red and have left strong coloured accent walls untouched when staging a property, because this room was not going to be furnished, I knew that a calming neutral pallet would be more to the liking of potential buyers than would an in your face red wall that had no furnishings to tame its bold colour. And once again, notice how the painted doors create a look that is more high end than the look that would have greeted buyers had the doors been left in their original state.



Design tip: Paint is a Home Stager's best friend. It can be yours too but if the task of selecting the correct colour is too daunting, please, send me a photo. I'd love to help you garner many a

Friday, May 7, 2010

Paint-A Home Stager's Best Friend

Paint -as I wrote in my last blog entry-has the power to camouflage or embelish. Paint is a Home Stager's best friend. It can transform any room. Take a look at these before and after photos to see what I mean.

Compare the trim on the pre and post painted sliding glass door. See how the painted trim creates a frame around the doors that makes more of a statement. There are those who believe that painting wood is sacreligious. Not I. My decision -to paint or not to paint wood- is dependent upon the look I want to achieve, the features I choose to highlight or hide and the condition of the wood. Look at how clean and refreshing the painted trim looks against the walls with their saturated camel colouring. The darker more saturated camel was chosen to help the kitchen cabinetry pop as well. The white used to paint both the kitchen cabinets and the trim throughout the house is Benjamin Moore's 'Simply White.' The camel colour used elsewhere in the house, a lighter shade, was selected to brighten up the sometimes dark living space.


Radiators- also touched upon in my last blog- can be a major eyesore. A Home Stager's best friend, PAINT, can provide a quick and easy fix. On the wall to the right of the sliding glass door, the radiator was camouflaged by painting it camel. White became the colour of choice as the L shaped radiator wound its way along the base of the breakfast bar. With the radiators blending into the walls, home buyers are better able to focus on the positive features this house has to offer.

Take a look at the white door in the picture above. It's height and whiteness are what attract the eyes' of viewers who as a result hardly notice the unit of cabinets adjacent to it. See how the cabinets become more of a focal point once the door, painted camel, blends in with the walls.



By painting the wooden coat rack/shelf the same colour as the walls, it too fades into the background and allows the cabinets to take centre stage.


When you look at the powder room transformation below, you can see why paint IS one of a Home Stager's best friends!





Design Tip: Think before you paint. Ask yourself what it is you want to highlight in a space and what is it you choose to hide? Not sure? Send me a photo. I'll be happy to help you garner

Monday, May 3, 2010

The Power Of Paint


Let's talk 'paint'. One feature of the home I just staged, that could not be changed due to budgetary constraints, was the camel/indigo blue 'Spanish style' floor tile that began at the front door and ran throughout the hallway, into the kitchen, the powder room and beyond to the mudroom/garage entryway. While I love the colours of the tile, the fact that the tile is no longer current and is the first feature of the house that greets buyers, necessitated a solution that created calm and allowed the tile to feel like it belongs. While the tile stuck out like a sore thumb because of it's strong pattern and outdatedness, this was amplified further by the different paint colours used both on the walls, doors and trim work. Everthing stuck out! Nothing blended in. The result- a very busy, chaotic , unattractive 'fixer up feeling' front foyer.

My challenge- the first of many -How to create an inviting foyer in spite of the busy pattern on the floor tile?
The solution- paint almost everything one colour-trim, doors, radiators and walls included.

My one regret, as I view these pictures now, is that I neglected to have the white trim running up the stairs painted the wall colour. The white baseboard in its brightness breaks the calm and competes with the wooden French doors which are the one architectual detail that make a statement in the foyer. Lesson learned. Take photos as the project progresses. The lens of the camera allows one to observe what the eye does not always notice.


Many people think that trim should always be painted a different colour than the walls and.... that doors should match the trim colour and not be painted the same colour as the walls. If the trim is white then so must the doors and all the woodwork be white.



I beg to differ. Trim, radiator and door colour choices are dependent upon what one wishes to emphasize or camouflage. In the case of the hallway, the busy nature and intensity of the floor required quiet everywhere else. Hence the front doors and trim, the bifold closet doors, the radiators and the inconsequential baseboards were all painted Benjamin Moore's Cable Knit (cc 306).



Baseboards that are nondescript usually fare better when they are painted the same colour as the walls. This adds height to the walls and camouflages the fact that the baseboards lack character.

More paint tips next time.

Design tip: Calm busy flooring by painting the surrounding trim, walls, baseboards, doors and radiators one of the quieter colours in the pattern.
You can count on Rave Re:views when you do so.


It's been a long time since I've written. Sorry for my absence but I'm back. I want my blog and the advice I impart to reflect the work I do. March was a slow month. A slow month results in fewer blog entries.
One project kept me busy for a couple of weeks in April and I would like to share some of the results.
Once again a Home Staging job that was to simply involve the rental and placement of furniture, wall art and accessories in an unoccupied property, became much more involved than was anticipated. It required that I become a full out project manager responsible for finding a contractor, electrician, painter, window and carpet cleaner etc. New fixtures, doorknobs and a bathroom sink, faucet and counter top had to be chosen and purchased. The job kept me hopping and I loved every minute of it.


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