Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Staging from My Written Report


Isn't this a pretty house?  Theses sellers requested my Consultation Report for their house going on the market.  Thought I would show you with their Living Room before and after.

Living Room After
This is the only 'after' picture that I have of the living room. It may look sparse but the changes make a much better impression than the original arrangement.  The sellers had a large brown leather sofa and club chair. Nothing against leather, but it is considered casual furniture.  The occasional chairs and small table are great for 'living' but not for 'selling'. (I continue repeating, 'staging isn't decorating'.) The bay windows are the selling feature of this room and they must to be featured.

You will also notice the seller exchanged their brass lamps for a lighter (in color and size) pair.  Love, love, love the extra large painting they placed over the sofa. I suggested a large picture and boy did they deliver! The painting balances the windows and the cathedral ceilings.  It will make a dramatic statement me from the adjoining foyer and front door.  I always use books for staging.  The sellers used two on the end table (closest to the windows) to tie in the colors from the picture.

The sellers had the white fabric sofa in an upstairs Bonus Room.  I suggested it be moved to the living room.  The white fabric sofa looks more formal in the living room than the leather.
If I were staging, I would have put a small glass coffee table in front of the sofa.  Glass coffee tables are great for selling because the create the illusion of more space.

I also would have added many big, colorful pillows.

When I write a report, I give the sellers my recommendations of items to add, edit or rearrange.  Of course, it is their discretion how to use that advice.  I've received many questions about using my reports to self-stage. 

I will continue to show examples for the DIY crowd!


Sunday, September 14, 2014

Sunday Musings: Forgive Me for Not Forgiving?

Cindysense.com
The value of forgiveness celebrated.  All the gurus and great spiritual leaders discuss the power of forgiving.  I'm a good Christian girl, but to be honest, I've always had a challenge about this particular tenet.  I struggle with the concept of forgiveness.

I am forgiving of small offensives.  Small offenses being things that happen (or are said) with no intention or awareness of hurt or wrongdoing.

But have a difficult time with the reprehensible: molestation, animal and child cruelty, adultery, murder,-- you know the MAJOR sins.  I've seen all the shows with the mother who forgives the drunk driver that killed her baby.  The forgiving man sent to prison for years then released after DNA tests prove his innocence.

I salute these folks! These people have super-human powers in my book.  Forgiving folks are evolved souls.  They are angels walking on earth.

I think there needs to be a different vernacular for mere mortals who grapple with the whole forgiveness thing. Here's my deal: I believe in release. I release people of  their wrong doings.  Release beats allowing their actions to invade my thoughts and distract me from all of the wonderful things to experience in life.
How easy is forgiveness for you?

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Online Staging


I've received questions about how my e-consultations work.  The seller sends me pictures of the rooms in their house.  I write a detailed report give suggestions of how it should be staged.  As with my all my consultations, it us up the the sellers to take my advice.  (More details are under "Services",)

Here is a dining room that has been self-staged.
Dining Room Before

Dining Room After
The sellers did not want to go to the expense of replacing the wallpaper.  See how removing the center leaf and positioning the table on diagonal makes all the difference.  They also added a live fern as a centerpiece, per my instructions.


Family Room Before
Family Room After
This room had too much furniture in it.  The sellers edited the furniture.  I also asked them to make an unobstructed path from the French Doors to the back door.

This coffee table had to go!  The huge coffee table literally 'eats' square footage.



Master Bedroom Before

Master Bedroom After
I recommended new bedding, a large picture over the bed (moved from another room) and remove the window valance and treadmill.  The other night stand (under the window) was added to the right side of the bed with a matching lamp.
I'm like a proud Mama when I see seller's follow through on my suggestions.


Friday, September 5, 2014

The Road is Paved with Philosophy

Happy Friday!
Google

I was summons for Jury Duty this week.  My number was selected, I passed the interview and was seated.  This was my third stint on Jury Duty.  This week I was "Juror #12".

I always find the process intriguing.  The juror interviews are long and tedious. Probably 60 people answered a battery of questions from the Judge and attorneys.  There was one juror that stood out to me.

"What do you do for a living?"  Attorney
"I pave highways."  Juror
"What is your passion when you aren't working?"  Attorney
"Philosophy.  I have been a student of philosophy since I was young."  Juror

At break, I made it a point to sit next to this older gentleman.  I asked him how in the world he withstood the heat of working with asphalt and temperatures so high. He told me his methods of staying hydrated and watching is electrolytes.  He went on to tell me that he didn't work as hard as the other men.  He had developed a work pattern based on his 5 senses.  He knew just exactly the number of strokes he needed to make to get the asphalt the required depth and density.  "Lots of men work themselves to death--especially the rookies--going back and forth and back and forth."  He worked with efficiency rather than effort.

Then I asked him about his passion for philosophy.  I can't begin to paraphrase all of the scholars, classic and modern, he quoted.  We had a discussion about physics.  He enlightened me on solving problems by applying numbers to possible solutions.

My head was spinning.  I was overwhelmed by all of the knowledge this man shared with me in such a short amount of time.

He told me that he made a decision early in his life to find a job that only required seasonal work where he could be outside.  He could pave highways for 4 months of the year and have the remaining 8 months to devote to his study and the application of philosophy--application being his 'philosophy walks'.

How lucky was I to meet this gentleman?  I met someone who orchestrated and was living a true Authentic Life.

Always make time for your passions.  Even if it is the road less traveled.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Friday, August 29, 2014

FAQ: Have You Ever Staged a Haunted House?

Happy Labor Day, everybody!  A long, leisure weekend awaits us!
Nightmares Fear Factory

Here's my story du jour.  Virginia's house for sale has had offers.  The best one was just this week.  The buyers made a reasonable first offer and my friends countered in kind.  Everything was going along swimmingly!

Yesterday, the potential buyers requested a third tour of the house before they countered.  The buyers were in the driveway when V's next door neighbor drove by, stopped, rolled down her window and shouted,

"You don't want to buy that house.
It is haunted!"

Our neighbor thought her remark was very clever and totally fun, fun, FUNNY.

All the buyer replied was, "You must be a neighbor."

The haunted house remark happened yesterday afternoon.  No counter-to-the-counter has been received.  Way to go neighbor!  The buyers probably weren't scared of the house but scared of our neighbor.

I can stage a house for it to sell but there is no work-around of stupid remarks.

I guess if Virginia's house is haunted, then I have staged a haunted house.  In 12 years, I have only been in one house that gave me the willies.  The house was gorgeous but it was a vacant house.  I was called in because it wasn't selling.  It was a cold, dark winter day.  Of course, I was by myself.  As soon as I walked in the front door, it felt creepy.  As I walked around taking pictures, I felt a cold chill envelope me.  Okey-Dokey me no likey.  Color me GONE.  When I downloaded the pictures there was something that looked kinda vaporous, grey-white, floaty--sorry, I'm not good a describing 'it'.  I showed the picture to a client and she told me 'it' was an evil entity, to rebuke it in the name of Jesus Christ, and I must never go back into that house.

'nuff said!



Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Meanwhile....More Staging at Virginia's

Hello from beautiful Raleigh NC!  The sun is shining, there is a gentle breeze and it is in the 70's.

Here's the powder room staging.  I'm bummed I failed to take before shots.  The picture is from Z Gallerie on clearance (and it had a small scratch on the frame so there was a further discount).  It couldn't have been more perfect!  Glass candle holders are from World Market.  Silver soap dish is one of Virginia's from her stash.
I added a wee little lamp.  There are no windows so the room shows as dark.  The biggest change was the new tile!! (See the right corner?)  There was dark brown carpet (original to the house! yikes!) before.  After much persuading (damn that StagerLinda and her demands!), it was replaced with gorgeous new tile.  (Mr.V is a tiling machine.  He replaced the tile in 3 other bathrooms too.)

Here are some more before and afters.  I swiped this antique secretary from another room and created a vignette as a quiet place.  It is a great place to compose handwritten notes.  (I do so hope personal notes never go by the wayside.)  It's always a good idea to turn 'wasted space' into 'usable space' for selling.
Landing After Staging
Landing Before Staging
ANOTHER EXAMPLE THAT STAGING IS NOT DECORATING
Here is a small bedroom upstairs that was used as an office/guest room.  The primary selling feature of this space is the window seat.  The top lifts to reveal deep storage.  Mr. Virginia took all of the hinges and 83 nails off, cleaned, painted and reinstalled. Great job, Mr. V! If you were decorating you would place a cushion and pillows on to of it.  Since I was staging, the potential buyer needs to see and access the functionality of this great storage unit.


Small Guest Room After Staging


Small Guest Room Before Staging