Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Occupied Home Staging

Occupied Home Staging

Thursday, April 14, 2016

3 Steps to Reviving your Kitchen!

So many people want to reinvent their kitchens. We imagine our kitchens looking fresh and fabulous - injected with a dose of decorating Botox.  We’ve all done it - scoured Pinterest boards for hours, endlessly Googled‘Easy Cabinet Painting Techniques’  and priced out dreamy new appliances.  So when the appliance company Big Chill, presented their challenge to create a style board about designing a kitchen around their stove line - I was all over the idea because I too am the gal Googling. Did Big Chill know that I have coveted their appliance line for years, loving their Retro inspired products in trend forward colors? Why? My Mom’s turquoise stove! I grew up in a household that sported a turquoise stove and that stove moved to 3 homes, helping make endless meals, right through my college years.  My Mom loved that stove, so this kitchen challenge post will be inspired selfishly and collectively with Mom in mind.
Rather than creating a new kitchen, my vision was reviving an existing kitchen, because after all that is my interior design philosophy for my design business REINVENTING SPACE .My motto is "Let’s use what you have 1st by reinventing, changing and updating, then spend it where you need to with something you really love, followed by filling in the blanks with cost effective solutions and finds in your personal style."

Reinvent your existing kitchen
STEP 1 - USE WHAT YOU HAVE 1ST: So let’s start with what can be reinvented, rather than buying new - Cabinets. We can easily and effectively repaint our kitchen cabinets today using the proper primer and paint. Take the reinvention a step further and remove a few upper cabinet doors and paint the interior a fun accent color. My SHERWIN WILLIAM’s rep. and friend, Annmarie Fabbi has 2 great water based Sherwin Williams products to use. Here's her suggestion on repainting your cabinets. Spend a bit of time sanding the original top coat of your cabinets to remove the varnish of your current finish.  Then using Sherwin William's EXTREME BOND primer,  one or two coats of primer to seal in any left behind varnish.  Make sure to take a ultra fine sanding paper and sand any bubbles between coats. Then use the PRO CLASSIC paint in the color of your choice, and repeat the process.
STEP 2 - ADD SOMETHING NEW THAT YOU LOVE:You will love Big Chill’s ‘Retro’ stove in 'Turquoise'- a kitchen statement maker and a cook’s stove. It's not only the on-trend in the most popular current decorating color, but a work horse appliance as well. Just like a great room layout, you want a focal point in your kitchen too - This range is the decorating emphasis and the jumping off point for the kitchen's design inspiration.
STEP 3 - FILL IN THE BLANKS: New counters in cost effective laminate.  Yes, laminate.  If you haven’t looked at laminate, you need to. 21st century technology has make this old school kitchen mainstay, a smart alternative to expensive stones. You can get your coveted Carrara marble look, even an undermount sink with designer counter edges at a fraction of the cost. In my Retro revival, the counters have WILSONART  'Betty',  a hip, vintage pattern with turquoise, gray and orange.  The lighting choice, a nod to my hometown of Chicago by BARN LIGHT ELECTRIC’S - 'Chicago Vintage' industrial chain hung pendant in gray. Further filling in the blanks with cost effective solutions, from bar stools to art - one-of-a-kind finds bought from CHARISH - a cool on-line source for upscale resale.

So there you have it - a simple three step process to revive your kitchen!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

DESIGN to SELL: Vacant to HOME

Vacant homes don't show well.  Whether they are old, new, renewed, renovated or in great shape, they sit an average of 166 days empty. Staged, they sell in a month or less. WHY? Because people buy homes that speak to their hearts. A potential buyers doesn't look at a living room and say, yes, I would like to buy this home because the room is 14x19'.  They want to walk into a space and see themselves living there - People buy homes because they fall in love with them. They want a story of HOME.

Here's a cute house that we took from vacant to home.

By staging a vacant home, you create a guideline of how the home can be used and celebrated.  From furniture layout, function to styling - A potential buyer becomes part of the story and see themselves in the home - They become part of the story of HOME.

Monday, September 28, 2015

4 FALL Updates for Your Home

If you think FALL decorating is popping a few pumpkins here and there around the house, gentle reader – Allow me to help you reconsider.  As our seasons rotate and change, so should a bit of your home décor. Why? Because when you shake it up, rotate it out and embrace a change in your home – You change too.  By giving your space a seasonal rotation, you engaged in your home's spaces and celebrate your most important place in the universe.  Your home will return the favor by making the occupants and visitors happy and look at things renewed.

Here are my 4 fall updates you can make to your home to embrace this new season.

[PHOTO: Plaid fabrics from JoAnn's, faux fur pillow from Tuesday Morning, IKAT pillow self sewn, Kilim rug from own collection.]

#1 - Refresh Your Textiles:

Clever textile changes can inexpensively refresh your spaces within a home environment quickly. This fall, try some fun faux fur pillows to make a space feel cozy and insert that tactile texture into your home decor.  Layer a table with a small rug, just as you would with a runner - a Kilim style rug is a great choice, since they come in all sorts of sizes.  Plaid prints are all the rage both in fashion and interior design. Head over to your local fabric store for a few yards (Joann Fabrics has a nice selection), or dig out that old stadium blanket you saw in Grandma’s trunk.  Use it just as you would any throw.  Swap out or sew-up a few new pillow covers – Heavier fabrics such as tapestries, animal prints, knits in deeper color tones will channel those outdoor changing colors.

[PHOTO: Knitted pillow cover knitted with yarn found at Tuesday Morning. Found too at Knitting Fever.  Etsy find, 'HOME' chalk paint and burlap mason jars by LIVE,LAUGH,CREATE.]

#2 - Get Crafty:

Whether it is sewing/knitting up a few new pillow covers, creating a plaid throw or heading to the local craft store to scour the seasonal section for inspiration – The Homespun/Homemade look trend is taking hold this season. I found some awesome shaggy yarn at my local Tuesday Morning and knitted up a pillow cover. So pick up a pair of knitting needles, dust off your sewing machine, or at least peruse Etsy, I like Live, Love and Create for some clever crafty Homemade styled accessories you can easily incorporate into your accessory collection.  

[PHOTO: Antique dough bowl from own collection, Pottery Barn has a similar version. Assorted terrariums. Glass containers found at HOMEGOODS and plants found at Home Depot.]

#3 - Bring Your Garden Inside.

Buy or create a terrarium ( super trendy, decorative and green), showcase a vase of fresh sunflowers, a pot of blooming mums or create a bolder statement with tall dried grasses or branches in a floor vase. No time to go out and buy fresh? Last week I found out about the folks at BloomNation. If you haven't heard of them before, they support local florists through floral delivery services and showcases their unique bouquets with their online marketplace.  Really bring the outside  with the mimic of bark with a rough hued bowl, a new wall art piece or even a new accent furniture piece.  It’s the rustic texture  that brings nature in.

[PHOTO: Sea Salted Pumpkin candle - Tuesday Morning, Millet sprays, potted mums and wood Rooster - Farmer's Market.]

#4 - Harvest Finds.

O.K., O.K., finally… here’s where the pumpkins come into play.  Fall is all about the harvest, head over to your local Farmer’s market for inspiration, from pumpkins to dried flowers, you’ll have a hearty supply of styling finds to add the final fall layer.  Continuing the harvest theme, every home needs a bit of whimsy, so yes, you can add a farm animal or two.  Farm décor is trending this year (In my latest ‘REAL SIMPLE’ magazine, there is a whole fashion spread shot at a farm) - so go ahead and add back that ceramic chicken in your basement. Set that cozy, fall mood with a fun new candle scents, such as  ‘Pumpkin Sea Salted’ or ‘Smoke’.  Swap out your lamps bulbs with the “Reveal’ warmer tones, Edison bulbs and add dimmer adapters to set the mood.

Lastly, find the time to do these seasonal updates to your home – You’ll find new joy in your living spaces, you may even finally spend time in your living room, enjoying the ‘HARVEST’ of your labor.
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