Happy Holidays!

Hello Friends!

I think I skipped November!  This time of year can get absolutely crazy, right?

For our family, we celebrate Thanksgiving, Christmas and then New Years Day (since we are Japanese) – so we decorate for one holiday,  take it down and decorate for the next – whew!  BUT … even through all the hustle and bustle, I have to admit, it is my favorite time of year!

It is cooler outside, so it is time to cuddle up with a warm blanket, a cup of hot chocolate (or Hot Toddy) and sit in front of a toasty fireplace.  Yep!  Even in Arizona!

I get very nostalgic this time of year, as I look around and see holiday decor everywhere – from reindeer, pinecones and snowflakes to candles and sparkling lights.  I love them and they make me happy!

I like to incorporate little holiday vignettes throughout my home.  They are almost like little stories scattered everywhere.  So, I thought I would share some of mine with you.

This is a vignette in my office – you can’t really tell from the photo, but it is very striking with the white porcelain deer and trees trimmed in shiny silver.

The trees and deer came from Target (a couple of years ago) and the adorable snowflake lights are from Pier 1.  The greenery accents of flocked pine branch with pinecones are from Michaels and the best part … if only you could smell them, are  Balsam & Cedar scented candles from Yankee Candle.

Super easy to put together and yet it just brings in the warmth of the holidays, don’t you think?  It doesn’t take much and you don’t have to put a ton of accessories together.  For example, here is a little arrangement on my desk.  Very simple – 2 silver glass trees and a globe – but look how sweet it is:

And one of my favorites – I have this one on my living room coffee table … I just love all the sparkle!  Again, not much to it – jar of ornaments & pinecones, lights, a tealight holder and a scoppio sphere all set on a silver tray from ZGallerie.

Decorating your home for the holidays should be fun and it doesn’t have to be stressful or elaborate.  The simplest groupings of a few holiday decor can bring in such Christmas joy!   Add lights (there are so many battery-operated kind to choose from too) and don’t forget to add candles … lots of candles!

Although 2017 brought some sadness to my life with the passing of my beloved Mother, I hope 2018 will be filled with Peace, Love and Happiness!

It has been such a pleasure blogging my first year and I look forward to many more posts next year!

I wish you all a Wonderful Holiday!
Enjoy your families!

Until 2018 ….

Happy Staging!

Step #4 – Accessories – A Necessity!

Hello Friends!

Today we are going to finalize our Steps in the Home Staging process!

Here is Step #4 – Accessories  

FINALLY  … my favorite part of staging – It is time to accessorize!  This is not only a super important step – but where your creativity comes shining through.  This step is where your home and all its furnishings come together, where the colors pop and when everything comes to life!

For my stagings, I typically have several vignettes throughout the home.  My base vignette settings are in the form of trio arrangements.  You can, of course, add additional pieces should there be gaps or if it just needs “something else” to make it complete.  Here are some examples of my vignettes:

    

     

As you can see, most of the vignettes are set in threes.  Here’s my typical setup:  I take one tall item (whether it is a lamp, candle or plant), a horizontal item(s) [for the bathroom it would be towels, otherwise it can be books, or decorative box, etc.] and your third piece would be a medium item that sits on top of the horizontal item(s) or an item that is a medium height to come between your horizontal and tall items – hope that made sense and didn’t make your head spin!

Let me show you an example of an arrangement I might do for a coffee table:  I would take a large tray, lay a few hardbound books, and maybe set on top of the books a decorative sphere or a small plant and then place a tall candle or lantern behind.  In the photo to the left, I did a tall candle, medium plant and a large rattan sphere:

 

Let’s try another:  On a nightstand arrangement – your lamp would be the tall item in the back and then I would place maybe a clock or something small and add a medium-sized item like a plant – and there’s your trio!  Pretty easy, right?

 

Of course, there are TONS of variations in doing this and there are no “set” rules.  This is just an example of how I like to start my base setup when I create a vignette for a nightstand, coffee table or maybe a side table in a staging.

One of my favorite places to create a vignette arrangement is in the kitchen!  You can have either a coffee, wine or maybe even a martini setting!  Here’s a coffee setup I did (this is a vignette with more than three pieces):  I took a large tray and placed a French press as my tall item, I then added two espresso coffee cup and saucer sets in front and then for my third piece I added a small bag of coffee – I accented it with a little plant and linen to fill that “gap” since the tray was so large.  See what I did though?  When you look at this – how do you “feel”?  A warm and cozy morning having a cup of coffee in your NEW HOME and/or NEW KITCHEN!  That’s what we want you to create – so when a Buyer comes in – that is what they feel!

TADA!  This is what Home Staging is ALLLLLLL about!

Now, let’s finish Step #4 by talking about the actual accessories you’ll want to use in your staging.  Whether you are staging a vacant home or your occupied home, you’ll need decor.  I’m sure you already know, there are a gazillion places where you can purchase home decor and accessories.  Besides stores like ZGallerie, Pier 1, Crate and Barrel or even Home Goods (where I am literally like a kid in a candy store!!), there are also online stores like Wayfair, Ballard Designs, Joss&Main and much more.  Truth is, some of my favorite places to find awesome decor is at consignment stores, flea markets, yard sales or even the local marketplace on your Facebook!  As they say: “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure” – so true, and since I like to restore things, it is also a lot of fun!

It doesn’t take a lot to update your occupied home, nor do you need to spend a fortune to do so, but it IS a necessity when staging.  My number 1 tip and key accessory would be pillows … lots of pillows!  In most homes, we actually USE our pillows and after several years, well – they tend to look worn.  So, whether you replace them from your couch, add them to your accent chairs or load them up on your beds, it is amazing how pillows can update your home while creating a warm and comfort “feel” to your home!

Other accessories that are great for updating are new and fluffy towels, candles and greenery.  When staging your home, believe it or not, it IS an art: you want to add accessories, but not too much; you want to add color, but not go crazy; and you want to bring in a style but not one that is too specific.  There is a definite difference between Home Staging and Home Decorating.

You now have a general idea of the home staging process.  Hopefully my ideas and information helped you understand the actual goal of staging a home.

Follow me and you’ll find in my future blogs more “in-depth” tips on home staging, lots more DIY projects and even some fun ideas for the upcoming Holidays!  See you soon, until then ….

Happy Staging!

Step #2 – Let’s Talk About Color When Staging Your Home

Hello Everyone!

Can you believe this is my ONE month anniversary blogging? Time DOES fly when you’re having fun!

Let’s do a quick recap of Step #1, from my blog a couple of weeks ago,  before we go forward with Step #2 of the Home Staging process.

Briefly, we mentioned about getting the home decluttered by removing all “clutter” and separating them into 3 boxes (Goodwill / Keep / Toss).  We also mentioned about de-personalizing the home by removing personal photos, trophies, hobby collections, etc. and either packing or storing these out-of-sight too.

If you have completed Step #1 …  then, you are ready to go on to Step #2 which is all about color.

Let’s think about color for a moment …

You know, I LOVE lots of color in my home!  It makes me happy!  I have different colors throughout my home creating unique looks in every room – add some matching color decor and it becomes Pinterest-worthy!

          

When you are LIVING in your home, I think it is great to bring in all the colors that express your personality – why not? – it is YOUR “comfy” zone, your domaine! Not to mention the infinite number of colors you have to choose from, it is almost hard NOT to add color to your walls.

BUT


you have decided to SELL your home, and NOW it’s a whole new ball game!  A “Home Staging” Ball Game …

 

Your goal is simply to attract as many potential home Buyers as you can to come and view your home.  So along with your decluttering and depersonalizing of your home, the next step is to NEUTRALIZE your home.

Before this gets totally misinterpreted … I am not suggesting that you turn your entire home “sterile” like a hospital and paint everything white.  What I mean by “Neutralize” is to remove wall appliques, those neat vinyl quotes and sayings, outdated wallpaper — and if you went crazy and painted each room a different color …. well, it’s time to paint them a “neutral” color.  Below are some neutral color samples from Dunn-Edwards Paint.  As you may notice, neutral colors do not necessarily mean only beige or white.  In fact, gray is a very popular neutral color these days.

By “neutralizing” your walls, you are creating a clean palette for your potential Buyers.  It helps them to visualize a color THEY would like to see in the home.

Buyers may have every intention of painting as soon as they move in, but the truth is, bright rainbow colors or outdated wallpaper not only distracts the Buyers, but it actually scares them!  They look at this as additional $$ COSTS $$ that they will have to incur should they purchase your home.  Their thoughts are that they will either have to get everything primed and painted (which is a lot of work); or for outdated wallpapering, they will more than likely need to hire a professional to get it removed (which is very costly).  Believe it or not, this can and has been a deal breaker!

Here is a home that we staged and we suggested the homeowners remove the golf pattern wallpaper.

 

 

See the amazing difference?!  After being on the market for over 7 months, this home sold in 48 hours after we staged it!

 

 

So, you can hire a professional painting company to paint your home or get some pizza and beer and gather your friends and family and have a painting party. Either way, those few extra dollars that YOU invest, will result in your home selling quickly!

Once you have your walls NEUTRALIZED, you can then start adding some “pops” of color throughout the home with pillows, accessories, decor, plants, etc. – this is the part that will bring your home to life!

I hope this has been informative – Please send me your comments or questions – I would love to hear from you!!  Don’t forget to follow me on my blog as we’ll continue to Step #3 of the Home Staging Process next week.

I’m excited to announce that I’ll be starting a monthly newsletter in August – so be sure to enter your email address so you can start receiving more informative news.  Have a great week and . . .

Happy Staging!

 

Intermission: A Great DIY Project

Well, I know I’m a little late in writing this week – isn’t it crazy how sometimes it gets so hectic that you wish you had 48 hours in a day?!  My last week was one of those wacky weeks.

My daughter requested to see some of my renovation and restoration projects on this blog.  So, for my daughter, I thought I would change it up a bit this week and give you a brief intermission from home staging and show you an adorable DIY project that I recently did.

I have to ask … am I the only one addicted to OfferUp?  I am telling you, there are some amazing bargains out there!  I enjoy going to neighborhood garage sales and finding “treasures” … but there are so many options now to “garage sale shopping”.  There are even group pages on Facebook that are categorized by your neighborhood zip codes where they post items they are selling.  Love it!

One of my favorite things to do is to find old, inexpensive tables, chairs or dressers that are in relatively good shape, but just in need of some TLC!  It is not only a fun hobby, but very satisfying when you can take something very old and restore it back to life!

So, I found these wicker chairs on OfferUp for $20.  They were pretty solid and in excellent condition (no broken wicker parts).  I was looking for something small to put on our balcony that faced the front of our home but didn’t want to invest in expensive patio furniture.  Although the seller offered the cushions, there are a few things I always recommend to replace and chair cushions are on the top of the list.

I visualized what I wanted these chairs to end up looking like, when I first saw them on OfferUp.  I knew this would be a super easy project and that it wouldn’t take me too long to finish.

You don’t have to sand these before spray painting, but it is a good idea to hose them down to get the dirt out of all the nooks and crannies.  There are a lot of places dirt can hide in wicker.  Once I hosed them down, I let them dry for 24 hours.  We can now go on to the next step of spray painting them.

I purchased 4 cans of the Rust-Oleum Paint+Primer in the Satin Granite Color at Home Depot for $3.87 a can.  When it comes to wicker, it takes a lot of spray paint to cover all the angles of the wicker so better to have more spray paint than not enough!

I will say it took about 1-1/2 cans of spray paint for each chair.  It was hot enough outside that each coating dried pretty quickly and it took about 2 full coats for each chair.  Once I was finished, I went around and literally looked at the chair in all angles and directions to make sure I didn’t miss anything and spritzed missed spots.

I chose this damask grey fabric I found online at Fabric.com.  It is a heavier weight fabric and can be used for either indoors or outdoors.  This pattern was also very versatile.  You could change the style from eclectic, French Country, Contemporary or even Farmhouse just by the accents and decor you pair it up with.  I think I am going more for the French country look.

    

As I was looking up the information for this fabric to pass along to you, it turns out that Fabric.com no longer carries this particular fabric (they still have it in the oatmeal, but not in the grey).  Good news though, there are so many variations of grey damask, that you could duplicate this pretty closely.  I purchased 1 yard at $12.98 per yard.  Since this was 54″ in width, there was plenty of fabric to do two chair cushions.

I have a wonderful seamstress I have known since I moved here to Arizona 14 years ago and her name is Ro.  Since I am very petite, there isn’t a pair of pants that I don’t have Ro alter for me.  Ro is absolutely amazing!  She does everything from window coverings to wedding dresses!  As I started this project, I created a template of the wicker chair seat area, I ordered a hefty piece of 4″ thick cushion foam from the Online Fabric Store for under $50.  (You only need half of the size I purchased – I was going to use this for other projects).

These are how the cushions turned out –  I love them!

For a final touch – I found these flirty little 18″ pillow covers on Amazon for under $5 each!  (They actually come in a variety of colors – so if you end up going with a different fabric for your seat cushions you can choose a color to match).   These were only the covers so you would have to get the pillow inserts – you can get pillow inserts pretty much anywhere.

Typically I get pillow inserts that are 2″ larger than the size of the pillow covers, but I actually went with the 18″ pillow inserts and they were perfect for these.  Super Cute!

The end result ….

I couldn’t take a photo with the two wicker chairs side-by-side since our balcony patio is really small.  They did come out pretty charming.  A little white table and some patio lights and it will be a nice place to sit and have a glass of wine!

Hope you enjoyed – we’ll continue next week with Step #2 in our Home Staging Process.  See you next week!

Happy Staging!

Happy July 1st and Blogging Day #1 for Revitalized Designs!!

So excited to be posting my first blog for Revitalized Designs!  If only you knew how long I have been waiting for this to get setup … my thoughts have been building up and ready to explode!  Okay, just a brief introduction, I am a professional home stager and started Revitalized Designs over three years ago … wow!  hard to believe it has already been three years!  I wanted to start this blog for all of you either getting ready to sell, already have your home on the market and want it to get some action … or for those just looking to update and refresh your home that you are living in.  I will be offering advice, ideas, tips and tricks of staging and redesigning your home.  I’m big on crafts too, so I may even put some DIY crafts that you can recreate.  I hope to provide you with suggestions and information that you can implement in your own home.  If you knew how many times I have updated and changed themes in my home … well, let me just say how thankful I am to have a husband who just “goes with the flow”.  Well, lots more to talk about and since I can type as fast as I can think (being a former legal assistant) … this could get very lengthy, but will definitely be an exciting adventure for all of us!  I look forward to getting your feedback, thoughts and basically just getting to know you.