Saturday, January 24, 2009


Hello my friends! How are you all? My last newsletter was September 2008, way too long to go without keeping in touch. I have been happily working on many exciting projects. I have met and worked with wonderful new people willing to put their rooms in my hands. There has been a lot of laughter and challenges …. And as you know, I just love that! Please check out new AFTER photos from recent projects on my website

I have exciting news- A dining room I designed for a loving family in Lower Macungie, PA will be featured in Lehigh Valley magazine’s March edition. They wanted rustic modern style with an asian touch. The room is shown above in my blog. Can you see their style? Look at the lines of the furniture and the wood stain, the tone of the oversized chandelier, the warm walls, and the simple 'pops' of shine and texture throughout.

I am also excited about a first for me-I am decorating the oldest home I have ever worked on! I have begun a design plan for an absolutely gorgeous home in New Jersey that was built in the 1800s. The ambitious couple purchased it in mostly its original state and have a lot of work to do. They have big, wonderful, great ideas and I will keep you up to date on it.
So now let me tell you what juicy stories I have written for this newsletter. I will begin with a simple question: What does an Interior Decorator do? I create designer spaces catered to the needs and style of my clients. That includes enhancing the function, which is not the ‘pretty’ part but the most important part. De-cluttering and organizing can change your way of life. Please read my semi-humorous article about this titled ‘Create a Haven And Live Better’ to get inspiration to increase your wellness.

I also included another hot topic that I covered briefly in my last newsletter. I feel like a record player (that really shows my age) discussing how to sell a home in this market by using Home Staging so this time I wrote a more detailed article on what to do within your home to sell it. It is titled ‘To Sell Your Home – Stage It’. If you know anyone selling their own home, especially in the Lehigh Valley, New Jersey or New York, pass it along to them.

One more thing to tell you about; I am working on my first decorating guide which will teach any amateur how to decorate like the professionals. The tricks and tips to get you the stylish room you always wanted. Wish me luck! Keep reading my blog for updates and inspirations. And I wish you luck with all your home projects.

Create a Haven And Live Better

I love coming home after a long day. I look forward to cooking in my kitchen, hanging out in my family room, and then unwinding and waking up in my bedroom. I endure enough stress in my life that I deserve a haven to relax, distract me in a positive way, and fold up in. We all do! So I created a home that does just that. I found the color palette that unconsciously lifts me up, and by creating better furniture flow and installing more organizational pieces and lighting, I don’t live in clutter any more. My home is now more than just a roof over my head and the rooms are more than simply functional. Now I go to bed with piece of mind every night. If you don’t have any of this in your home you don’t know what you are missing. A messy home, a disorderly home, a poorly chosen paint on the walls, clutters the mind so it can never rest and tension sits firmly on your shoulders. You never feel at ease.

I am by no means a Stepford Wife making meatloaves and pies from scratch in a dainty floral apron with pearls around my neck. I leave dishes in the sink and seem to only ‘really’ clean when guests come over. So I needed to make sure my home functioned to give me leeway in my daily non-perfect life. I can’t say my husband has as much patience with me as my home does.

The only room I hadn’t touched since I moved in was my bedroom closet. It was a disaster. It is a decent sized walk in but I couldn’t’ stand to be in it – literally. I had a shoe collection the size of a mountain and clothes piling all over the floor. I would trip over a heel and then disappear beneath the piles of jeans and shirts. It was a pain just to walk in and out of it, let alone find something to wear. One day I had enough!

With heavy gear on and the anthem from Rocky blearing in the background, I rolled up my sleeves and I cleared the room. I painted it an exciting color. I hung a large black and white framed poster of my idol, Audrey Hepburn, striking a pose from the famed Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Then I added a dresser and hung up hooks to hold my budding beaded necklace collection. I only brought back clothes and shoes I actually wear and purchased pretty boxes clearly labeled to hold belts, scarves, stockings and other items I don’t use as much. I placed everything where I can easily access it. I also bought a shoe system that allowed me keep them organized-finally! With the addition of a new light I created another space that I love being in.

Try it and see! When you live in a home that is designed for you in all ways, it will increase your wellness, fuel imagination, encourage a positive attitude and strengthen your focus.

To Sell Your Home – STAGE IT

The longer a home stays on the market the lower the selling price drops. But if you put some money into your home to stage it well, you will you have a better chance at reclaiming that selling price. The secret is to change the look and feel of your house so a buyer can envision themselves living in it. It is truly a buyers market right now so this is very important. Remember, there is a lot of competition out there; Homes with the same features, selling for similar prices, probably right in your own neighborhood.

So what separates your home from the one down the street? Your goal is to create an emotional connection between possible buyers and your home as soon as they step inside your front door. Know who your target buyer is and decorate your home to be attractive to them-not you. The buyer already knows how many bedrooms and baths you have, they know about your basement if it is finished, lot size, and any extras. The ad in the paper or their broker told them already. Now they are coming to see your home because it fits their needs. Make the most of this opportunity.

So you need to do more than fix what is broken in your house; you need to look at the paint on the walls, the clutter, the furniture arrangement and all your accessories, and edit it all. This is called Staging. Staging your home to suit potential buyers; If you use the right wall colors, furniture arrangement and de-clutter and edit out accessories, you will have more of a chance of getting the maximum value for your home.

I am going to review the most important staging requirements. Number One: detach yourself from the home you are selling. Look at your home through the eyes of a buyer, not the seller. REMEMBER THIS!!

Declutter – put away all the kids crafts, art work, awards, the family dogs things, and lots of books and small knick knacks. Although these items mean a lot to you, they won’t do anything to help sell your home – and may even turn off the buyers. Although you would think to stuff all your clutter in your closets so the rooms like tidy and neat, that would be a major no-no. The neater your closets, drawers and cabinets are, the more useful they look to a buyer. You could make a teeny tiny coat closet look sufficient by not keeping it full and filled. You could make a few cabinets look like enough, if they are organized and easy to access. Rent a storage unit and place oversized furniture and all your personal items that would distract the buyer from seeing your home as a possible fit for them.

Paint the walls – you want to warm up the space with paint that is visually appealing to the buyer. Color adds personality. Not too much color though, or it will distract the buyer who can’t see beyond the color you chose. The key is to choose a color that is neutral enough to give the buyer wonderful ideas about what they can do with the space.

Define architectural details and positive focal points using color. Your goal is to have the buyer stop and stare throughout your space, instead of just whisking through like a fast breeze.

Furniture – too much furniture is a mistake all too often made. Edit out pieces and watch the rooms open up. Also try floating pieces to create better traffic flow and create warmer atmosphere.

Don’t cover up the windows – Allow natural light in and create an open feeling by using sheers or simple drapes to outline the window. Always use window treatments of the same length when you have different sized windows in the same space. It evens them out.

Lighting – if you still have builder grade lights – change them. Everyone loves upgrades.

Clean up the front door and entry way – Add the drama with a chandelier and a foyer table or bench. Do not over accessorize. Mirrors make small foyers feels larger.

Garage – this should be spotless, organized and show off its size.

Lastly, the trophy room is every house is the kitchen -

Make sure it looks large, clean and inviting. Like this kitchen I designed that is airy and uncluttered.

If you keep all these key staging tips in mind, your home will view well and be more marketable than your competition. Best of luck to you.

Hope you enjoyed this issue. I had fun writing it. And placing it on this new blog allows me to constantly update you on new things going on, new projects, photos to view, and to hear from you! If there is a specific topic you would like me address, please let me know. In the meantime dream big and express yourself. Life is a journey full of color, rockin’ style and surprise.

Decadently Yours,


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