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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Vintage Kitchens Abound

Well, over at House & Home Magazine's blog, Michael Penney was blogging about retro pink kitchens.  The look oh so feminine and fun, but who would be courageous enough to do it!  He included some of kitchens of yesteryear, and to my shock I saw this picture:

Now, I knew my kitchen was original b/c of the state of decay the cabinets were in (you might notice a missing drawer face in one of the shots),  but when we looked into renting this place I loved all the vintage charm and light it had.  What I didn't know is that it actually still has the original hardware as well!  Look at the picture of my kitchen!  I have to say the cabinets & hardware are really a love/hate thing for me.  Everything is pretty beat up and dated at this point in its 90 or so year life, BUT I would so much rather have the kitchen I have than some dark wood veneered cabinets from the 80's, or even 90's. I'm a sucker for a white kitchen.   I suppose there probably was a cool retro stovetop at some point as well.....too bad it has been replaced only for the fact that these stoves give it that oh-so vintage vibe.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Design Board - Whimsical Modern

Here is the latest design for a client who has 4 very active and creative kids.  They had recently finished out their basement when I came on board to help make the plain-ole-nothing-to-talk-about-basement into a fun, and engaging spot for the kids to hang out as well as the whole family.   The basement is devoid of any furntiture except the children's IKEA red and blue barrel chairs.   My client also loves a casual, whimsical look in general, so that was a win-win between the kids and parents.  However, I wanted inject some clean lined furniture pieces and a crisp contrast with black and white to give an air of sophisitication as well.

Stay tuned for the final after shots.......

Friday, March 4, 2011

Spring in near.....Staging advice

With the spring real estate season approaching, I thought I would share a little staging vs non staging advice.   Sometimes the hardest part about being a stager is convincing a client that they should follow through with most if not all of my recommendations.   I can't blame them entirely since I am asking them to spend even more money on a home they are about to leave.   I wish I could show them the future just as Ebeneezer Scrooge saw his future of doom.   

Well, as is happenend I can show you almost that very scenario.  The condo right above our place was put on the market last September. It was renovated extensively about 7 years ago and is a 4 bdrm/2bath.  List price: $475,000.  Exactly one week later,  another 2nd floor condo one street over was also put on the market. This house had just been gutted and renovated by a builder.  Its a 3 bdrm/2 bath. List price: $489,000.  

As it turned out, I did not stage the property above us even though my landlord did ask my advice.  Advice was given, but unfortunately advice was not taken.  One of the items I suggested doing was repainting in more neutral colors as they were strong colors that wouldn't appeal to a broad market. The colors also made the rooms look smaller.    The other condo one street over used very "of the moment" neutrals. 
I also suggested staging some furniture, particularly in the open living room/dining room/ kitchen area.

Here are pictures of the two condos:

The verdict?  The condo one street over sold 2 months later, November 1st.  The condo upstairs from us lowered the asking price to $440,000 and finally took it off the market January 1st without any buyers.

There you have it folks. There are many factors involved in getting a house sold, but staging can play a very important part!