How to Make the Bed for Home Staging

How to Make the Bed for Home Staging

How to Make the Bed for Home StagingBeds are the focal point for most bedrooms, and your objective when staging it is to create a space where potential buyers feel invited to relax and would be comfortable sleeping. Think luxury hotel room!

To give your bed that layered, high-end hotel look:

  • Remove bed linens that are dated, worn, too bright or too heavily patterned.
  • Bed-in-a-bag options are an easy solution and available at most big box department stores. These sets typically include the duvet, bed skirt, pillow shams, sheets, and accessory pillows.
  • Opt for neutral color bedding, preferably solids or with minimal patterns. Not only does it give the room a more cohesive, high-end feel, it shows up much more favorably in your listing photos.

Steps for Staging a Luxurious, Layered Bed

  1. Iron the bed skirt and place it on the bed. I prefer a simple, tailored bed skirt cleaner lines as opposed to a fluffy dust ruffle (which can look too feminine).
  2. Apply the fitted sheet as usual.
  3. Apply the flat sheet next, making sure the “right side” of the flat sheet is down, facing the fitted sheet. Tuck in the sides, leaving a couple of feet untucked near the head of the bed (you’ll fold this back at the end to make the bed feel more inviting).
  4. Spread your bedspread or quilt across the bed, leaving the top edge about a foot away from the headboard. Now fold your flat sheet back across the top of the spread.
  5. Fold your duvet or comforter in thirds and spread across the bottom of the bed. Alternatively, you can place the duvet the same way you’d lay a bedspread/quilt in the previous step.
  6. Place your pillows in the proper order:
    • 2 Euro pillow (3 for a king) in the back against the headboard
    • 2 standard-size pillows next
    • 1 to 3 decorative throw pillows in the front layer
  7. Drape a blanket across the foot of the bed to add a little color or contrast

These are guidelines — not hard and fast rules for every bed. Play around with your options and find the solution that works best for your room and bedding. Making a beautiful bed may be a bit of a pain while you’re trying to sell, but it is a MUST for your listing photos and when showing the home. Show potential buyers just how luxurious and restful your bedroom(s) can be by making the bed look extra inviting! And if you still need help, contact Three Bears Home Staging to set up a Walk & Talk Consultation for your home before you list it!

 

Tips for Decorating Your Holiday Mantel

There’s no place cozier during the holidays than snuggled up next to a warm fire, even in sub-tropical Houston! Okay, so maybe some of us still have the air-conditioner running at the same time…BUT a festive fireplace is definitely a focal point during the holiday season. Decorating your mantel can be a challenge, so we decided to share a few tricks and tips to make your mantel merry and bright this winter.

  • Use layers. Overlap decor of varying heights to create a more cohesive design. A good rule of thumb is to use a large weighted piece at the back of your design (like a mirror or a piece of large art), then add candles or taller pieces, and finally some smaller filler decor or greenery in front.
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Photo via Whoovie

  • Balance your design by putting complementary decor opposite each other. Your display doesn’t have to be symmetrical, but the items should have similar visual weight, scale, or form. Try placing larger decor on the ends, while centering shorter items (and if that doesn’t work, reverse it!).
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Photo via MidWest Living

  • Simplify color. Use no more than three colors to keep your mantel from looking overly embellished. Since your fireplace is already a focal point, use muted lighting and colors to set the stage for your holiday display.
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Photo courtesy of Ideal Home via Brewster Home

  • Vary texture. Texture and shine add a big boost to a mantel with neutral color. Mercury glass and pops of sparkly gold or glitter add radiance and a little holiday glam.
  • Add a garland. Opt for simple color palette that has variations in texture for a classic holiday look. And make sure it’s the right length:  the dangling ends of the garland should only hang down from the mantel about 1/3 of the way to the floor.
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Photo via Whoovie

What tips do you have for holiday mantels? Share your secrets with us! And if you know someone who’s thinking of selling their home this holiday season, consider a gift of our DIY Home Staging Guide! It’s filled with lots of information on how sellers can sell their homes quickly and for more money!

*Feature image photo credit: www.personalcreations.com

5 Easy Ways to Style Your Thanksgiving Table

Whether your Thanksgiving traditions feature a formal, candlelit dinner table or a relaxed afternoon with football and feasting (or even somewhere in between), use a few of our holiday tips to help style a festive table that is just right for you and yours.

  • Add brightness and contrast to your Thanksgiving meal with edible garnishes! Surround your bird with fresh sage and citrus fruits. Sprinkle bright red pomegranate seeds in a butternut squash soup. Top fluffy mashed potatoes with fresh green chives. Make your meal look as good as it tastes!
Photo via foodnetwork.com

Photo via foodnetwork.com

  • Roll out craft paper for a simple, neutral runner or tablecloth. Decorate it yourself or invite guests to write messages–perfect for a kids’ table!

  • Brighten the mood with a little sparkle! Touches of gold and glowing candles add a beautiful bit of drama to your table scape.

    Photo by Pottery Barn

    Photo via Pottery Barn

  • Add natural elements, like flowers or a simple sprig of rosemary or thyme, on each place setting to make your table feel festive without being overly fancy.

  • Create super simple homemade place cards by tying name tags to mini pumpkins with a little twine. It’s all in the details!
Photo via Holly Mathis Interiors

Photo via Holly Mathis

 

If your home will be on the market this holiday season and you need a little help getting it ready, give us a call at (832)377-0785 or schedule a Walk and Talk Consultation with us here.

5 Tips for Staging a Media Room

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This beautiful room was pulled together by one of my clients after a Walk & Talk Consultation. The styling here really helps buyers visualize themselves enjoying “movie night” in the comfort of their own new home!

Media rooms are an especially attractive asset to high-end real estate buyers who expect luxury features in a home. Just like any other room, staging a media room well means creating a space that helps potential buyers dream about what life could be like in your home! Use these tips to show buyers your media room is the perfect place to hang out and relax!

  1. Neutralize paint. I tend to see an unusually high percentage of red media rooms in my consultations. Remember, the goal for staging is to create mass appeal in order to attract a greater number of buyers. While a thoroughly red media room works beautifully for many home owners, such a strong design statement will likely limit its appeal to potential buyers. Softer, more neutral tones promote relaxation and better allow a buyer to envision the space as their home instead of being reminded it’s still yours.
  2. Use vignettes. Vignettes are little groupings of props or decorations that create an emotional connection point for your buyers. They romanticize your home! If there’s a wet bar, set out a tray with a couple of empty stem glasses and a wine bottle. Setting a coffee table with (fake) popcorn and soda invites potential buyers to picture themselves relaxing in the home with a great movie!
  3. Hang oversized artwork. This is a great trick for media rooms that are devoid of electronics. Hang a large art piece in place of the screen for a touch of color on that giant blank wall. In the Houston area, local artist Stephen Scott creates large scale custom framed art and photography to complement your decor. Visit his site at http://artreka.com.
  4. Invite relaxation with plush seating. Add lots of pillows and a coordinating throw to create a comfortable space where buyers dream of unwinding. Hint: If you’re missing your red paint, throw pillows are a great way to add some pops of color back in to the room–and you can take them to your new house!
  5. Maximize lighting. Buyers respond best to “light and bright.” Media rooms, however, are typically dark and often windowless. Add a floor lamp, open windows, and turn on all lights during showings so that buyers can see all that this room has to offer.

If you still need a little help getting your media room just right, call Three Bears Home Staging & Redesign at (832)377-0785 to schedule a consultation. We’ll help you get your media room ready for show time in no time!

3 Easy Ways to Add Decorator Style to Your Home

blog-addstyleDecorating your home in a way that seamlessly combines style and functionality can be challenging. Regardless of how expensive the furniture or decor, sometimes our homes still seem to be missing “it” and fall short of the perfect rooms we see on HGTV.

One solution is hiring a professional home stager or redesigner to help rearrange your existing decor in a way that has more impact, making your home feel fresher and more modern. But if you’re not quite ready to have a professional come in, use these easy tips to add decorator style on your own.

  • Declutter. Many of live with too much “stuff.” When you have a lot of “stuff,” you have more to clean, more to organize…in short, you create more work for yourself. Having less clutter also helps re-direct the focus in the room to the things you truly love and/or use. Whether you choose to donate, sell, or haul it to the trash, SIMPLIFY your surroundings.Bed3-watermark
  • Add life. As any one of my clients can testify, I am a BIG believer in the power of plants in the home, both for staging and redesign. Plants and other organic elements — twigs, shells, natural wreaths, even really convincing faux plants — add character and warmth to a room and create an emotional connection for home buyers and home owners alike.
  • Neutralize…some things.
    Color has more impact when it’s used sparingly and not competing against other colors for attention. While it may sound boring, using shades of gray, white, or beige on the more permanent elements of your home, like sofas and walls, generally offers a lot more flexibility when it comes to decorating. Plus, it’s simpler and more cost effective to add color with throw pillows, art, and other decor…and swap out those touches of color for something else when your tastes change.

Living-2-watermarkDo you still need a little help getting your home “just right?” Contact the professionals at Three Bears Home Staging & Redesign in Katy, TX and we can help!

Drapes and Wallpaper in Home Staging

blog-Drapes-and-WallpaperStaging is 100% visual marketing. It’s about creating the most demand from the largest number of potential buyers. In most cases, drapes and wallpaper of any kind are extremely taste and style specific. To increase the appeal of your home with more buyers, we recommend removing wallpaper and drapes in most cases.

Most buyers will not appreciate the elegance of your custom drapes or the pattern of your wallpaper. Are you willing to gamble thousands of dollars in your hard earned home equity by waiting for that one buyer who can either see past those things or who loves them?

Common Home Seller Questions

“Are you saying I have bad taste in drapes/wallpaper?”

No. We’re not anti-wallpaper or anti-drapes when it comes to decorating. The home you live in and enjoy should be personalized! Decorating is not staging, though. Staging is about marketing your valuable product (the house) in a way that will statistically net you a higher profit, less time on the market, and fewer buyer objections.

“But the draperies/wallpaper were very expensive! Don’t they add value to the home?”

No, they don’t. Value is based on your square footage and comparable sold homes with similar amenities in the immediate vicinity. Drapes and wallpaper won’t alter the value. What they can do is increase or decrease the mass appeal of your home and the amount of time it sits on the market.

“I’m afraid if I remove the wallpaper it’s going to tear up the walls.”

It might, but guess what? Potential buyers will likely have the same thoughts. And they’ll add it to their mental list of projects to be updated when they move in, which reduces the amount of money they’ll be willing to pay for your home and the likelihood that they’ll even make an offer.

Occasionally, it is possible to paint over wallpaper, but this requires special prep (read tips from both Sherwin-Williams and Benjamin Moore that detail the circumstances where this is possible). A qualified, professional painter (we can make recommendations) is often one of the best investments when preparing your home to sell.

“But my wallpaper/drapes are so cute/whimsical/classy/neutral! Do I really need to take them down?”

Yes. Buyers will see what you want them to see. With very, very few exceptions, wallpaper and draperies put limits on the potential buyers can see in your beautiful home.

“Buyers are going to decorate this house the way they want to anyway. Can’t they see past my decor?”

No, most can’t. Statistically, only about 10% of buyers will be able to look past personalized decor and visualize your home’s potential for their lifestyle. Most buyers want a home that’s move-in ready. That means instead of seeing all the beautiful potential of your spacious kitchen or bathroom, they’re going to see dollar signs and a room they need to spend time and money renovating.

“I’m not sure. Maybe I’ll just wait and see what kind of feedback I get after I put my home on the market.”

By waiting to remove things about your home that, most buyers typically find objectionable, you limit your market and risk sitting on the market waiting for that one buyer who can either see past the wallpaper or who loves it — an expensive gamble for most sellers.

If you need more help getting your home ready to go on the market, give us a call at (832) 377-0785. Our popular Walk & Talk Consultations provide home sellers the guidance and immediate feedback they need to get top dollar and a quicker sale!

Photo credit: tapetenpics via Flikr.

How to Fall in Love With Your Home Again

blog-Fall-in-Love-AgainWhether it was love at first sight or a whirlwind mental courtship of decorating potential, most of us felt a buzz of excitement the first time we saw our home. As with many relationships, time can take its toll on how we feel about our house. This Valentine’s Day season, rekindle the spark and fall in love with your home again with these simple tips:

  • Declutter and organize. Collect any extra clothes, nick-knacks, and home goods, and sell or donate what you don’t love or use. Deal with paper piles by filing or storing important documents and shredding outdated items.
  • Let there be light! Proper lighting affects mood and is essential to our sense of well-being. Open curtains or blinds and move furniture that may be blocking natural light. Add lamps or ambient lighting to darker spaces to create a soft glow and a cozy environment.
  • Re-arrange. Sometimes just moving the furniture around can change the energy flow of a space. Try something different and see how it feels. Ask for feedback from a friend whose taste you admire.
  • Add life. Plants are a simple way to add beauty and life to a room. If you don’t have a green thumb, try fresh cut flowers or Ikea has a great selection of beautiful faux plants that will do the trick.
  • Freshen up. Our sense of smell is incredibly powerful and is an important tool in creating an environment you love! Whether it’s the clean scent of a “fresh linen” air freshener or the nostalgic aroma of a cookie-scented candle, choose something that speaks to you. Tip: Based on current research, we generally advise home sellers against using any complex scents while the home is on the market.
  • Add personal touches. Feature pieces that you find beautiful or meaningful. Incorporate favorite pieces of art, treasured collections, or even cozy new throw pillows into parts of the house where you spend the most time.

Perhaps the best tip for recreating that love connection between you and your house is to cultivate a sense of appreciation. Nurture feelings of gratitude for the people or animals who share your home. Remembering to have a thankful heart for the shelter and space your home provides can help re-kindle that spark of love.

Do you need a little help falling in love with your home again? We offer redesign services and color consultations at affordable rates! Contact us online or give us a call at (832) 377-0785 to schedule an initial consultation.

Photo credit:  Elin B @ Nordic Touch, www.nordictouch.co.uk

How to Hide Eyesores and Flaws in a Room

blog-hide-eyesoresAs I watch my dad and husband eagerly await the approach of hunting season, I am reminded of the importance of camouflage. Camouflage is essentially the art of making something blend in with its surroundings, and it can be an important tool for home sellers on a tight budget. A well-staged home will draw attention away from negative elements and focus on the home’s most positive features. Here are a few tricks of the trade that can help you hide flaws in a room:

  • Tiny windows – Hang curtains wider and closer to the ceiling to visually expand the space.
  • Unsightly electrical cords – Use little hooks attached to your desk or wall to hang electrical cords just out of site. A large, full plant also does a great job of hiding wires.
  • Bumpy, uneven walls – Paint with a low sheen finish reflects less light, making it harder to notice surface imperfections. While flat paint does a great job of this, it’s not very durable and is generally recommended only for low traffic areas (i.e., the ceiling). An eggshell or satin finish is still low-sheen, but more durable.
  • Small, dark spaces – Buyers respond to light and bright, so add a lamp! Mirrors are another easy way to make a room feel bigger and brighter.
  • Cluttered, open shelving – Remove the clutter and put anything that absolutely has to stay in matching baskets. Less is more!
  • Open layouts – This isn’t necessarily a flaw by itself, but when adjoining walls in an open floor plan are chopped up by different colors it can feel unsettling to potential buyers. With open layouts, it’s generally better to select one wall color for all the adjoining rooms and add pops of color in other places. The continuity of a single color tends to be more relaxing for buyers.

If you need a little help figuring out what to do with eyesores or problem areas in your home, we can help! Give Three Bears Home Staging and Redesign a call at (832) 377-0785 to schedule a consultation!

4 Secrets for Picking the Right Paint Color

blog-choosing-paintPaint color sets the tone for your home. The right color brings everything together in harmony. The wrong color can feel overwhelming and chaotic. You can avoid an expensive decorating mistake by using these tricks of the trade to pick the paint color that’s right for you.

  • Compare your choice with the bottom of the strip. The true color is at the base. This color is the most saturated and allows you to see the true undertone much more easily (e.g., “Oh wow, the bottom color is surprisingly reddish…so that beige I liked at the top of the strip might look kind of pink on the wall!”)
  • Know how light will affect the feel of the space. Evaluate how the light in YOUR space will affect the color. In other words, do NOT choose paint based solely on a color you selected at the paint store/online or because it worked in another house or even in another room!
    • Natural daylight will reflect the truest hues. Southern light is warmer and brighter, while Northern light is cooler and dimmer.
    • Incandescent lighting will bring out the warmer, yellower tones in color.
    • Fluorescent bulbs, though energy-efficient, cast a diffuse, shadowless light that gives a blue tinge to the colors in the room. Warm wall colors (yellow, gold, orange, wheat tones) lose their warmth in older-style fluorescent light. Newer fluorescent bulbs, called triphosphor fluorescent lamps, are warmer and render color that more closely resembles sunlight.
  • blog-choosing-paint-PAINTSTRIPConsider the flow between other rooms. Color should bring the space together with a natural flow. This is especially true in open floor plans, which are typically better suited to one main color throughout the home with some well-placed accent colors in a few places.

Hint: One safe and effective way to add some dimension is to select tints or shades from the same color strip.

  • Try a sample. Once you’ve narrowed it down, purchase a sample from your favorite paint store and paint a few large pieces of poster board. Hang your paint samples on different walls for a few days and note how the light changes and how it plays with your other accessories. *I provide free 8″ x 10″ color samples to my color consultation clients.

Still need a little help? Three Bears Home Staging and Redesign offers affordable color consultations that can help you choose the paint that’s right for you! We also have great color palettes that work for home staging! Call us at (832) 377-0785 to transform your home into a color palette you love!

How to Accessorize a Coffee Table, End Table or Nightstand

How to Accessorize a Coffee Table, End Table or NightstandNot sure how to accessorize an end table or nightstand? Stuck on how to style a coffee table? The possibilities are endless, and there are no hard and fast rules, but the goal is to always keep basic design principles in mind while using accessories as tools to express the homeowner’s style (redesign) or to freshen up and neutralize the room (staging).
Use these tips to accessorize any coffee table, end table or nightstand for your home staging or redesign project:
    • Use groupings in odd numbers (three to five pieces is ideal).
    • Vary the heights of items used (small, medium, and large) to keep the eye moving. A popular staging trick is using a small stack of books to add extra height to an accessory!
    • Incorporate organic elements (plants, branches, sea shells, flowers, wooden bowls) to bring the outside in.
    • Layer your accessories.  It’s okay to let a lamp cover a portion of the artwork or to layer art elements.

Accessorizing for Staging vs. Redesign
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For staging, choose neutral accessories that update any setting without showcasing a hobby or profiling the owner (while your home is on the market is NOT the time to display your collection of sports memorabilia or unicorn figurines). For redesign, however, it’s all about the homeowner and surrounding them with the things they love (NOW you can bring out that collection); use unique items that add character, such as something purchased from a trip, and group around it.


What to Avoid

Don’t place accessories in a straight line, crowd the space with too much or place items in a way that blocks conversation. Each item should add interest and complement the entire arrangement. When the eye has too many things to focus on, nothing stands out and the brain interprets this as cluttered and crowded. Remember that less is more because it allows the viewer to truly appreciate and examine what is on display.