Sisal Rugs: Agave Is Not Just for Tequila Anymore

The agave plant has a rich history in relation to food: it is the mother of the popular alcohol tequila and recently has become the base of many natural sweeteners. But agave’s use goes beyond food, it extends to interior design.

Sisal is a natural fiber extracted from the agave plant and is used to make area rugs. Its use is actually older than tequila and sweeteners, beginning back in Ancient Egypt. In the 19thcentury sisal cultivation expanded into the Caribbean, Florida, and South America as well as parts of Africa. Nowadays, Brazil is the world’s largest producer of sisal fiber and rugs.

The plant fibers are very durable yet soft, making it a natural choice to weave into area rugs and broadloom.  It is naturally fire-retardant, sound absorbing, and antistatic. Sisal is also a stronger fiber than flax, jute, and hemp, other materials commonly used in rugs. But its superior qualities make sisal a better and longer lasting material for rugs.

Sisal has been making a comeback in popularity because of the green movement in interior design. It is considered environmentally and architecturally neutral, meaning that production of sisal products does not leave a carbon footprint on the atmosphere. Rugs made from sisal are also naturally colored because of the differences in the fibers, which reduce the need for artificial dyes.

Area rugs made from sisal are an excellent design choice for an environmentally conscious client. As it has grown in popularity, it also has been dropping in price, so right now is a great time to find deals on sisal-based textiles. With its durability, environmental benefits, and design possibilities, a sisal area rugs is a solid investment for your client’s design.

What is your Decorating Personality?

Take the following quiz from Bernhardt Furniture to see if you prefer traditional, country, eclectic, or contemporary furnishings. Do not be surprised if your answers include more than one style.

Which colors do you prefer for the living room or bedroom?

A-    Rich deep reds and greens, berry, carmel, tans

B-    Soft muted reds and blues, earthy browns

C-    Vibrant blues, yellows, reds, greens, white

D-    Off white, black, sienna brown

Your favorite fabrics include:

A-    Damasks, silk brocade, and chintz

B-    Patchwork, gingham, and floral mini- prints

C-    Plaids, prints, and textured colors

D-    Hand Loomed ethnic textiles

Your perfect sofa would be:

A-    A tailored sofa

B-    A plump sofa with lots of pillows

C-    A rolled arm, skirted sofa

D-    A leather modular sofa

What type of rug or carpeting do you prefer?

A-    Oriental rug

B-    Bare floors

C-    Sisal rug

D-    Wall to wall carpeting

What would you most like in your dining room?

A-    A wood sideboard with a carved marble top

B-    A pine hutch with glazed pottery

C-    A contemporary sideboard displaying a Victorian tea set

D-    A sleek buffet with clean lines and minimal hardware

Scoring: Tally your answers to find the letter you picked the most often. If you choose:

Mostly A’s

Traditional style combines period furniture , sumptuous fabrics, and rich colors that reflect good taste. Heirlooms, art and antiques, the hallmarks of traditional style, breathe luxury that defies trends and time. Traditional furniture includes such classic 18th- and 19th- century styles as Queen Anne, Chippendale and Victorian.

Mostly B’s

Country style- American, English or French- is warm, charming and unpretentious. Stripped pine, painted chests, stenciling, needlepoint pillows, and old quilts with soft, muted hues define this relaxed style. Deep, comfortable sofas in natural fabrics or flowery chintz and linen beautifully updated country decors.

Mostly C’s

Eclectic (Which literally means “Borrowing from many sources”) style integrates old and new, mixed prints, and florals, different, different types of wood finishes and also different materials, like iron  and stone. This mixture of textures, colors and patterns creates a vibrant layered look with plenty of warmth, interest and personality.

Mostly D’s

Contemporary style is sleek, stark and spacious, favoring simple uncluttered designs with clean lined and minimal detailing or trim on furniture. Some people add a touch of traditional design with deeply cushioned sofas and chairs in an otherwise spare room. The emphasis: A new vision of luxury based on high-quality materials and exceptional craftsmanship.

 

How to Prepare Your Floors for Home Staging

When you put your home on the market, it is important to make it look its best for potential buyers by home staging. And one of the first parts of the house a buyer will notice is the floor. Whether your floors are hardwood, carpet, linoleum, or tile, they should be as clean as possible before showing your home, and you can automate the process with the use of automatic vacuums you can find online.

 

Hardwood

Start by wiping down with a microfiber-dusting pad to remove debris and dust. Next, apply a hardwood floor cleaner to the microfiber pad and rub the cleaner into the wood. You can then apply a floor polish to the wood for an extra shine and a layer of protection, but make sure that the floors aren’t too slippery for walk-throughs.

Carpet

The first option is always to have your carpets professionally cleaned by someone like our carpet cleaning Cardiff friends, who do a great job and are happy to travel within the tri-state area. Otherwise use a carpet cleaning machine and place open containers of baking soda around the carpeted area to absorb any smells.  Let the carpets dry completely before allowing anyone to walk on them or you place furniture on them. Not waiting can cause the carpets to absorb more dirt than they would if they were fully dry. Finish the process with a vacuum run.

Linoleum

The easiest of flooring types to clean, linoleum can be cleaned with basic soap and warm water. Again make sure the floor is dry before showing your home to avoid people slipping.

Tile

Begin with vacuuming the floor, and then mop it with a mixture of equal parts hot water and vinegar. You can also use a specifically made tile cleaner. Have another bucket of water to rinse the floor after the vinegar mixture. Make sure to clean in the grouting as much as possible, as this part of the floor usually looks the dirtiest.

Using the right cleaning method is the best way to protect your floor from looking damaged when you show your home. Clean floors are of the upmost importance when staging your home for potential buyers. They drastically improve the look and cleanliness of your home, and this improvement increases your home’s value. It may be a time investment, but the returns you will see in your home offers will be worth the effort.

What Is The Most Popular Furniture In Homes Today?

Furniture makes a home complete.  Furniture styles have evolved over the years as the demands of the buyers changed. Aside from that, home stagers are becoming more experimental with their style options, and this is seen by the types of furniture in their homes.  Below are some of the popular styles of furniture present in homes.
Traditional Style
This type of furniture has been around for ages. It is usually a combination of different designs from different parts of the world. Apart from that, they are made from toned woods such as cherry wood and mahogany. Most of them come with designs such as carvings, veneer and marquetry. In terms of fabric, the most common ones included damask, tapestry and jacquard. Some of the most popular traditional style of furniture includes Federalist, Queen Anne, Chippendale and Regency.
Country Furniture
Country furniture, also known as cottage furniture, this is a combination of different designs that comes with a rural touch and very inviting. Their main features include minimal adornment and simple lines. Some of them contain washed or pickled oak or pine, while others are incorporated with elements from iron and wicker. Most of the furniture comes in one color or they can combine two tones, you can find country furniture on the TV Bed Store website. The fabrics used in this type of furniture include cotton and linen with checks, stripes, and floral patterns. The outlook is usually comfortable yet casual.  Some designs that homeowners can consider include American Colonial, Italian, French and English.
Modern Furniture
The invention of the early 20th century paved way to modern furniture, which feature streamlined silhouettes.  This style of furniture is very popular because of their new sleek looks.  The designers have used new materials including tinted glass, steel, and plastics in combination with wood, both pale and dark. The fabrics used include leather and monochromatic upholstery.
Contemporary Furniture
Many people mistake contemporary furniture for modern furniture. However, they come with a variety of differences.  Contemporary styles are made to be convenient with the inclusion of variety of features such as drink holders in chairs or sofas.  The most common types of wood in this style are birch and maple, both dark and light. The contemporary styles feature upholstery with natural tones and texture such as silk, wool, leather, linen and cotton. Accessories such as pillows and rugs are a common aspect with this style and they feature vibrant colors and geometric patterns.
Eclectic Furniture style
For homeowners that are not interested in the typical styles of furniture, eclectic is the way to go.  This style allows them to combine the different styles to contrast or complement each other and other décor in the room. The secret is choosing the best combination to create a well-designed area.
Transitional Furniture
This style provides homeowners the chance to combine traditional designs with contemporary furnishings. This leads to a comfortable yet attractive style. This style comes with dark or warm wood but with minimal carving and ornamentation. The upholstery comes with solid colors and simple patterns, making them easy to coordinate.
While you can choose a single style, home stagers have the chance to customize the look of their designs with the guidance of the color schemes and existing décor.

Washinton DC Course Coming March 19th

Have you often thought about a rewarding career path in a design field but thought it would take to long or cost too much?Are you aware that you can become an expert in the fastest segment of Interior Design in just 1 week of intensive training and get your own business up and running in just 1 month?

On March 19th The Academy of Home Staging is providing a class in Washington DC. Not only will you be able to see the White House right across the way from where you will trained but DC’s Annual Cherry Blossom event is happening the same week. For more information on the festival click here.

Just 2 weeks from today you could be Designing Interiors for a living….

 Home Staging is the # 1, up and coming career according to CNN and Career Builder. Home Stagers design interiors of homes that are for sale so that the home will sell quickly and for top dollar.

 Currently, investors are scooping up foreclosed properties, updating and staging them so they can earn more profits and faster. This is an amazing time to build a lucrative Home Staging business quickly while servicing repeat clients who are doing several houses a month.

In the 42.5 hour, hands-on location training you receive with The Academy’s Advanced Home Stager Certification program, you will learn everything from:

- how to get your business up and running in just 30 days
- how to reach dozens of clients in just 5 minutes
- how to price and market your services
- how to build your business for very little money
- hands-on space planning, color theory, picking paint colors, style boards and accessorizing exercises
- out in the field on 3 staging exercises
- take home contracts, customizable advertising pieces and project worksheets
- after class coaching included

Upcoming dates and locations are:

Washington DC area – March 19 – 23 

Los Angeles area – March 19 – 23

Tampa area – April 23 – 27  

Call to get started before the busy summer season – 818.726.6429

When I first thought about becoming a Home Stager, I wondered if I could really make it? Well, I am here to tell you, that through trial and error, I discovered what it takes to be highly successful in this field and now I want to pass those years of knowledge on to you and save you hundreds of hours and dollars in frustration and wrong decisions. Because I want you to truly be successful, you also receive our business cd containing all the contracts, proposals, worksheets and click and print advertising pieces to transform your business into $$$$$ immediately. Plus you receive 2 months membership into our VIP, Ongoing Education program which includes coaching and advanced audio classes.

Don’t wait any longer to start your amazing journey – Click here to get started.  or call me to talk staging – Kim 818.726.6429. I would be happy to shed some light on any questions you have about the industry.

Rules of Accessorizing

When choosing accessories for home staging, the first thing you want to do is analyze your inventory? What types of shapes and sizes do you have? It is important when accessorizing that you choose accessories that vary in size, height and weight, and is important to group each of these items together in variety when staging a home. Make sure you have a wide variety of greenery too.  Here are a few tips that will help you incorporate all of your accessories in your home and make your home staging project stand out about the rest.

Table Top Arrangements

Accessorizing a table top arrangement calls for frames, a lamp, candles and other creative accessories. Keep in mind the number one rule when grouping these items together. The rule of threes.  The basic idea of this rule is that the objects are arranged or grouped in odd numbers. Accessorizing in odd numbers makes the room more appealing, memorable, and effective than even-numbered pairings. Even adding plants will help to break up the monotony and add interest to your vignette.

Grouping Art

The rule of three is especially important when hanging and grouping art on the walls. If you want the overall display to appear as one to the trained eye then stick with the same or similarly shaped frames or mirrors. You can also add contrasting shapes and sizes if you want to bring attention to each specific piece. You want to keep your wall visually exciting stay creative and keep the rule in mind.

Grouping by Size
Accessorizing by height can be tough. You do not want all of your items to be at the same height. You can keep it interesting by displaying your accessories from large too small or from small too large. You can implement the rule of three when using different sizes as well. You can pick one large, one medium, and one small, group them in three and you have perfected your art.

Green Accessories
Greenery will be your best friend when accessorizing. Group a set of candles and a picture frame with a real or silk plant or orchid. Adding greenery to your vignette will help bring the entire room to life and add color to your overall presentation. Greenery makes a world of difference in any room.

Keep these basic rules of accessorizing in mind when staging your home and you will provide a sense of harmony in your overall project. Accessories can be used to balance the color scheme of a room or to add weight in order to perhaps balance out a heavy piece of furniture. Be creative, love what you do, and have fun.

5 Do’s and Don’ts When Staging Your House

When putting your house up for sale, the first thing you need to do is present it in a way that would appeal to the broadest possible buying audience. The trick is to envision certain things when in their place and look at things objectively. Ask yourself whether you can imagine yourself living there. Keep in mind that you are selling a home, not just a house.

Part of the commitment of selling your house is to be mentally prepared to take the necessary steps to get it sold. If you’ve been living in the house, it’s easy to overlook or get used to the clutter every day. But to a buyer, it may seem like a messy and cluttered home that they may not want to move into. It is also a proven fact that buyers prefer to purchase a house they don’t have to put too much time and money into fixing. With the right techniques, your efforts to dress your house will fly off the market in no time at all. Follow my 5 do’s and don’ts and you will be set for success.

Don’t leave it unrepaired. Go through your house and make a list of things that need to be repaired, and have them done. A buyer will usually take note of negatives and this will be high on their list. Don’t overlook the simplest repairs such as leaking taps or stuck kitchen drawers. If you need to, get professional help for the more complicated problems.

Don’t forget cleaning and uncluttering. If you live in the house, make sure you clean every nook and cranny. An unclean house makes buyers feel uncomfortable. Pay extra attention to areas such as the bathroom and the kitchen. If you can’t seem to clean the fingerprints on the wall, consider giving it a fresh coat of paint. You may have grown used to your untidy garden or exposed household cleaning equipment, but unnecessary clutter like this can lose you the sale. Tidy up family photos and books by dusting and arranging them nearly or storing some of them away. The less clutter you have, the bigger the space will seem.

Don’t neglect neutralizing. If your walls are too bright or patterned, it might make it hard for the buyers to imagine their own things in the house. Paint your walls in a neutral, warm and inviting color scheme such as cream or mocha. Even just a warm white all over would certainly be better than a purple wall.

Never as well overlook dynamizing. By dynamizing, give the room in your house that special look. Make sure that each room clearly conveys its function and purpose. For the bathrooms or toilets, display fresh towels and toiletries like they do in hotels. For the living room, put a vase of fresh flowers on the coffee table. These little touches add towards giving a breath of fresh air to the space.

Lastly, always consider ShowTime. After all is said and done, you’re finally ready to show off your house at its best. Make sure each room is as bright and welcoming as possible by drawing the curtains and turning on necessary lights. Turn on the air conditioning of fans before prospective buyers arrive. It can help put them at ease when they enter the house. If you have a broker showing the house, make sure he or she can answer important questions and handle objections so as to be able to get the best possible price in the shortest time. If you don’t have one, take the buyer around the house in as professional a manner as possible. In either case, it’s best to receive buyers when the house is not in a state of chaos with children or pets running around.

Ancient Furniture History

History

After the retreat of the last ice age, the hunter-gatherer communities of the Stone Age gradually began to acquire the skills of agriculture, and civilizations were born. No longer perpetually on the move in an endless search for food, families were able to build homes and acquire possessions. Division of labor was possible, and skilled craftsmen began to develop their trades in producing articles such as jewelry, pottery and furniture.

Ancient Furniture

Although much ancient art such as pottery and jewelry survives from the earliest civilizations, ancient furniture was mostly wooden, and has long since rotted away. Our knowledge of ancient furniture is mainly derived from scenes depicted in early art forms, such as pottery decorations and frescos. Perhaps the earliest furniture in existence is that found at Catal Huyuk in Turkey that dates from around 3000 BC.


Evidence

A valuable contribution to our knowledge of ancient furniture came from the excavation site at Akrotiri, where the Minoan city of Thera was preserved by lava from a volcanic eruption. Although the actual furniture has long since perished, it has left cavities in the larval rock. By using these cavities as moulds, archaeologists have been able to reproduce the furniture that stood in these ancient Minoan homes.

Examples

The best examples of ancient furniture still in existence are those found in the tombs of Egyptian noblemen. Egyptian furniture was placed in tombs for the use of the deceased in the afterlife, and many items are still in good condition due to the hot, dry climate and the fact that they were sealed inside the burial chambers.

Chinese

Many items of ancient Chinese furniture have also been preserved, since Chinese civilization has continued uninterrupted for thousands of years, and works of art have been treasured through the centuries.

Egyptian & Graeco Roman

Although surviving Egyptian furniture, Greek furniture and Roman furniture is rare, a lot of information is available regarding the ancient design of homes and furniture in these cultures. This is because ancient Egyptian art, Greek art, and ancient Roman art, artifacts and literature are plentiful, giving us a good idea of how these ancient people lived.

Classical Revival

Greek, Roman and Egyptian decor was the inspiration for the neoclassical furniture styles popular in Europe and America in the 18th and 19th centuries particularly the neoclassical furniture of the late Georgian era in England and also Regency Furniture.

New Virtual Hybrid in Home Staging Training

New Hybrid in Home Staging Training – Learn hands-on in your P.J.’s (edit/delete)

New cutting edge Hybrid in Home Staging Training combines hands-on classroom training with the convenience of learning from home.

In the past, traditional online training provided students with little or no personal interaction, the ability to ask questions or receive feedback on their progress….so The Academy of Home Staging has taken their extensive, renowned classroom training and converted it to a live virtual classroom course, where there is live instructor training via computer. Students showcase projects via this interactive virtual classroom and receive group and instructor feedback, instruction and coaching.

In addition to individual coaching and mentoring, students are also given on-going education after the certified training program is completed. This is unprecedented in the Home Staging Training Arena and fills a niche that has long needed filling, especially now that CNN and Career Builder proclaim that Home Staging is the #1 Career Poised for growth. (http://www.cnn.com/)   

The Window of Opportunity is Now Here.  

If you or someone you know is interested in a hands-on home staging training program but prefers to learn on weekends without travel, have them check out this program: http://HomeStagingAcademyOnline.com   

Posted via email from kkapellusch’s posterous

HOME STAGING – the #1 Career Poised for Growth by CNN – Are you going to Miss the Window of Opportunity?

Are you going to miss the window of opportunity?

The Home Staging industry is wide open and CNN and Career Builder are saying that Home Staging is the #1 Career poised for growth. There has been so much talk the past few years about home staging and there are over 10 televisions shows that feature home staging, and yet few have jumped on the band wagon – no wonder CNN is predicting Home Staging as the #1 career for growth! (http://www.cnn.com/)

Home Staging is a fun and rewarding career that allows you the freedom to create your own schedule, pick and choose the jobs you want to work and earn a fantastic living, being your own boss!

Home Stagers arrange furniture and accessories in a creative and strategic way that sells homes 67% faster and for 10% higher offers. And according to a 2007 HomeGain study, Home Staging yields a 343% return on investment to the home owner. This means that home owners actually MAKE money every time they hire a home stager!

If you have been longing to design interiors for a living, this is the perfect time to get into the industry and establish yourself as your area’s expert. While others are sitting on the fence, you will have the opportunity to build your name and client base before the competition arrives.

The amazing thing about home staging is that it is the fastest growing segment of interior design and while training for interior design can take 2-4 years to complete, Home Staging Certification can be achieved in just 40 hours.

The following areas are needed skill sets in the Home Staging arena and you will want to choose a certification program that offers the most complete training in the following areas:

- Insider Home Staging and Design Techniques including staging tricks and techniques, space planning and color theory

- How to obtain and retain a client base

- How to build your business step by step from the ground up

- What services to offer and how to price your services

- How to stage lived-in and vacant homes with in-field, hands-on staging training

- Insurance, contracts and forms

- The opportunity to ask questions of the instructor and small class size

- Ongoing training and support

If you are considering a career in Home Staging, I recommend you check out http://www.TheAcademyOfHomeStaging.com for the most in-depth and complete training system available.