I’ve been in full-on Christmas decorating mode for the past month. So today–with our first snowstorm of the year and only a week away from Christmas–seemed like a perfect day to post some photos of recent client work.
What I wear now to do my job as a home stager is so different from what I wore as a magazine editor. I’ve learned over time what is comfortable for staging days. It needs to be lightweight and breathable (it’s often sweaty work), but still look polished. During a staging job we are lifting bins filled with home accessories, hefting large and small pieces of art, mirrors, lamps and bags and bags of pillows, bedding and towels, into and out of vehicles. Not to mention the work of carrying these same items up and down flights of stairs, across loading docks, into and out of elevators–it is very physical work.
But there is also always the chance you will be running from a staging job to a consultation or a meeting with a potential client and you need to look polished.
That’s why I love these Jet Crop Slim pants ($98) below from Lululemon for home staging days. They are cropped andfitted at the calf and through the leg but are loose around the upper thigh and midsection. They have deep pockets (hello place to store nails and picture hangers while I’m hanging art!) and are made of a fabric that is so soft and yet, doesn’t fade. Plus, it’s sweat-wicking and has four way stretch (perfect for all that bending, lifting, climbing). But these beauties still keep their shape. You could easily swap out your staging day functional shoes for a pair of flats or even heels (the saleslady said people she knows do that!) and you are good to go for meetings with realtors or homeowners. Here’s a link to what they look like on http://shop.lululemon.com/products/clothes-accessories/crops-yoga/Jet-Crop-Slim-Luxtreme?cc=0001
I also bought the In Flux Jacket ($128) above from Lululemon because it is sleek and fitted, hip length for more coverage and has a water-repelling exterior and a sweat-wicking soft interior with four-way stretch. Perfect for a hit of colour and to stay warm and dry on rainy days on the job.
My father-in-law recently gave me this Sandflex block from Home Depot. The packaging say it’s like an eraser for removing rust from outdoor equipment, cleaning stainless steel, restoring nap to suede, and removing mineral deposits from ceramic tile and toilets. A great little thing to add to my tool kit as a home stager. I tried it on my saucepan and got great results. Check it out.
On a recent vacation to Aruba I had lunch at a restaurant called Pier Pete’s located (not surprisingly) at the end of a pier. The decor was rustic and about what you would expect from an outdoor bar/restaurant surrounded by water. When everyone who wanders in is usually in a wet bathing suit, fancy chairs are not a good idea. So I love how they have recycled wooden skids and fashioned them into chairs and benches. Brilliant!
Yesterday I had the opportunity to attend a taping of CityLine. My friend–and wonderful photographer– Rhonda McNeill (Catch The Spirit Photography) offered her extra ticket to me and of course I jumped at it. The topic of the day was home decor–perfect!
Tracy Moore, the host of Toronto’s CityLine, was so sweet and engaging. Between filming she came into the audience to talk to everyone. Tracy is as beautiful in person and just as fun and authentic as she seems on TV. The show’s producers are full of energy and keep the crowd keyed up–even getting the two men in the audience up to dance with them between takes!
The expert guests were the super talented Canadian designers Kimberly Seldon and Karen Kayne. They shared advice on positioning of sofas in large rooms, tricks to beautify bulkheads and answered audience design questions.
A great way to spend a morning for anyone who loves home decor!
With a few days of down time–and an inability to avoid jobs around the house that have been nagging me for months–I decided to tackle my linen closet. It had grown out of control and was to the point that I couldn’t fit anything more in it. Looking inside I had no idea what was what.
I started by pulling every thing out of the closet. I went through each sheet, pillow case and sham and sorted them into piles (king, queen, double, twin). This was time consuming because (maddeningly) most of the sheets are not marked on the tag with their size. That meant I had to measure them in some cases (seriously!) to figure out the kings from the queens from the doubles.
I pitched anything that was damaged or yellowed and made a pile to donate. I always stick with the rule that if you don’t use in in a year, out it goes.
I decided that to make more space, and to be practical, I would store towels in the cabinets of each bathroom. That freed up a ton of space in the linen closet.
Key for me was being able to see what sheet size and type I was looking for at a glance. That would also ensure I would keep up with my newly tidied closet .
A trip to Michael’s store yielded the coolest little metal clips with tiny hooks that easily attach to the metal wires of the shelves and a hook at the bottom. I also bought small thick-stock paper tags with gold borders (for bling!) and a hole at the top to attach to the metal hook. I wrote in black marker the various types of sheets and their size (ie. King Fitted, King Flat). Once I attached my labels to the tops of each metal shelf I placed the piles underneath accordingly. Voila!
I even had enough room to add some small baskets to house bathroom supplies such as body wash, shampoo and conditioner. Now when we run out each family member knows where to find the supply. Another basket holds extra toilet paper.
To combat that musty smell that can happen in a linen closet I bought some scented linen sachets at Homesense and put them between the stacks on a few shelves.
Now my linen closet is so beautifully organized that I want to keep the doors open all the time!
Check out these before and afters below.
As a mom of three boys I am constantly battling with what to do with the pounds of Lego in our house. I came across this video on Houzz.com and thought it was the coolest way to store Lego for someone like me who likes things neat and orderly. But you’d need tons of time to do this properly (which I don’t have) and lots of cash for the cabinets (again, not me). However, I think it could be done easily enough on a much smaller scale. It could be as simple as stackable containers with labels for what is inside the container, or glue a piece of the Lego to the outside of the container so your kids know at a glance what goes where. That makes for super easy clean up time. Check back to find out what I did to make this on a much smaller scale!
Check out this Lego room and hopefully get inspired.