Category Archives: Design Tips

Outdoor Spaces When You Are Selling Your Home

It’s finally summer and with the brutal winter that occurred throughout most of the upper Midwest and beyond, people want to be outside. When working with sellers, one of the things I advise them on during a Home Staging Consultation is to treat almost any outdoor living space as additional square footage.

I know it is not counted towards the square footage total in valuing your home, but many buyers gravitate towards the outdoor spaces and you need to give them priority.

Whether it is a deck, patio, screened in porch or front porch, they all need to be addressed.

With a front porch it is the first thing the buyer sees and it creates such a homey, cozy spot that they can see themselves enjoying quiet time with a cup of tea or a book and watching the world go by.  wicker-furniture-on-the-patio-with-a-samovar

If it is a back deck or patio it invites them to spend a balmy summer night barbecuing with friends, making s’mores with kids or taking a nap.

outdoor dining table

 

 

These areas should have flowers but also furniture. A dining table perhaps, chairs for gathering, and don’t forget the throw pillows!! Outdoor throw pillows can be purchased anywhere for very little dollars and they add fun, zest and ambiance.

 

Okay okay you don’t need as many as me. LOL

Outdoor Throw Pillows

 

Take a look at your outdoor space and get it in top selling condition along with the rest of your home; and don’t forget to keep it spider and cobweb free. 🙂

 

Outdoor chairs

 

 

Decorating With Coastal Colors

Ahhh……I think it is finally Spring and with that comes an urge to redo a room or two in your home. An easy way to do that is with a paint color change or even changing a few accessories like throw pillows, accent pieces or artwork.

I love Coastal Colors as they are so fresh you can almost smell the salt air. I will say I have some coastal color favorites when it comes to paint.

Let’s start with Drizzle by Sherwin Williams SW 6479. There are so many rooms that I have used this color and have never been disappointed.

In a Family Room:

 

A guest bath:

 

 

And even a Laundry Room:

 

 

Another great coastal color is Rainwashed by Sherwin Williams SW 6211.  Again I have used this in a laundry room and also a Master Bedroom and Living Area.

 

 

 

Sherwin Williams Comfort Gary SW 6205 and Sea Salt SW 6204 are probably the highest on my list for coastal colors. They are so spa like as well.

 

 

 

 

If you don’t want to commit to a new painting color (but why not it’s only paint after all), accessorizing in coastal colors is a great option.

 

 

 

 

You do not have to live at the beach to use Coastal Colors in your home. Pick a room that you would like to add some color and head to the paint store this weekend!

 

A Great Project to Start Off the New Year – Chalk Painted Furniture!

It’s been very popular for a few years….have you tried it? Chalk Paint? You see so many vintage shops selling old furniture that has been redone in chalk paint; and pop-up weekend shops carry many chalk painted pieces. I have bought a few and love them. Purchasing the finished product always seemed the easiest to me.

BUT……I have a vintage round coffee table with caster feet that I love and when I purchased it almost 20 years ago it was the very popular sage color. 

 

I have been so tired of that color (besides it being a bit dated) but I never wanted to get rid of my favorite coffee table. It is complete with raw wood nicks and dings and I love the imperfection of it. 

So I FINALLY decided to do something about it when I saw a dining room table done in chalk paint at a client’s home. It was stunning!

There are many brands of chalk paint and I am not pushing one over the other and will tell you only what I used. I visited a local store that carries vintage finds already re-done but that is also is a leader in teaching people the technique of chalk painting. This store carries the Annie Sloan brand of chalk paints and accessories which is one of the most well known and original chalk paints.

The first decision I had was what my base color would be….that was easy enough. Old World White. Not a bright white but rather a soft white but not cream.

The next decision was a bit tougher, deciding the wax color. All chalk paint needs to be wax protected and sealed and a clear wax will keep your paint color true to the original. I however wanted a worn rustic timber look but in gray rather than brown.

So I selected black wax. SCARY!

The nice thing about chalk paint is that you don’t have to do anything to the surface you are painting. NO  SANDING NEEDED! I never paint anything I have to sand down first, that is why I have always been a Spray Paint Queen, just point and press the button.

I must say Chalk Paint is just as easy. Just paint it right on.

 

 

The wax was a bit trickier but all in all WAY easier than I expected. The wax goes on a little tougher in that it really is a wax…..like shoe wax. Not like polyurethane which is what I was expecting. The wax needs to be worked into the wood a bit.

HUGE TIP: Don’t over apply the wax. When they say less is more they really mean it. The wax should feel dry almost immediately and I didn’t get that part. Mine was tacky to the touch even an hour after applying it so I had to go back and wipe some off. No big deal but still, you can save yourself some work.

 

 

Next was the most challenging part which was applying the black wax over the white to just give it a very soft appearance of a gray wood grain. It went so much better than I expected! It took me a few tries with the brush to get it exactly how I wanted it to look but then it clicked right along.

Tip #2: Buy the brushes, at least the wax brush. I felt like I needed to take out a home equity loan to buy them but they really are worth it.

The nice thing is if you get too much wax on your piece you can wipe it right off and try again. I did end up getting too much on one area and not getting it off as quickly as I should have but it’s where my tray goes anyway so who cares. 🙂

 

 

To keep it short and sweet……I LOVE MY TABLE! It turned out better than I imagined and on my first try! I thought I would be repainting it 3 times for sure.

So try Chalk Painting….I think you will like it!