2018 was a year of growth for Element One Home Staging. I’ve been doing this long enough to have developed my own style, but I also jump at the chance to change it up and try something new. The past year has given me plenty of opportunity to experiment, refine my technique, and add a few new tricks to my toolbox. And above all, in looking back on the past year, I’m grateful that I get to do what I love for a living!
What follows is a look back at a few of my favorite stagings of 2018. The numbering here can’t quite be described as a rank order. I love them each for different reasons, (kind of like my kids) and they vary so much in terms of style that it was rather like comparing apples to oranges. Whether the home allowed me to incorporate some of my own taste or inspired me to try something new, each of the following stands out to me as a memorable staging experience.
#3: Davis Road, Hilliard: Farmhouse Chic
This home was certainly not my usual style, but I had so much fun trying something new. I loved the house itself for many reasons: the fireplace in the dining room, the spacious office, the open kitchen, the covered deck. But the bedroom was actually my favorite room to stage.
Many probably don’t know that I’m very critical of myself when it comes to staging bedrooms. (I blame my mom–she always made my bed for me, so I never learned how). However, I was thrilled with the way the bedroom turned out in this house. I think it was partly the pillows. The combination of solids and patterns in neutral colors added layers of depth and created the impression that you could really sink into the bed.
Also, while it’s not a secret that I love to shop, it is a little known fact that I sometimes have items sitting in my warehouse with the price tag on them for months because I’m waiting for just the right time to use them. The three decorative wooden squares above the bed, for example, had been carried to at least five different houses without being used, but I was so excited to find that this home–this bedroom–was the perfect place for them.
I staged this home in December, and it went into contract very quickly.
#2: Newport Loop East, Grove City: Textured Textiles
I loved staging this home because I got to incorporate some of my personal style. The home already had elegant finishes that I found appealing–the tile around the fireplace, the modern sinks and hardware in the bathrooms, the arched doorways, and the brick and tile backsplashes in the kitchen to name a few. The open floor plan, big windows, and high ceilings also made this space fun to work with.
With all of that as my canvas, it felt natural to add decadence by using different textures and splashes of color throughout the home. Faux fur creates an ambiance of luxury, so I really enjoyed using the white rug, pillows, ottoman, and throw blankets in the living room and bedroom to make the home inviting and warm. (Plus, I staged this home in February, perhaps the coldest and dreariest month of the year).
This home was also featured in Window Fashion Vision Magazine in an article about color written by JoAnne Lenhart Weary. This room was under the subtitle: Yes, Virginia, Neutrals Need Appreciation Also.
In addition to the faux fur, I used splashes of pink (my favorite color!) in the front sitting room to add some vibrance to the home. The pink throw pillows and rug contrasted with the cool gray pillows and art to give the space a little glow. I certainly can’t use that rug in every home, but it makes a big impact when I do use it.
#1: Periwinkle Way, Plain City: Airy & Modern
This house has an entire room just for wine. Need I say more?
In all seriousness, I was honored to be given the opportunity to stage this home. Featured in the BIA Parade of Homes in September, this home was a big job and a great experience. There was no shortage of space in this luxury home, from the huge master closet to the gorgeous outdoor spaces. Nor was the house lacking in style, so trying to elevate that style was a big undertaking.
Many of the rooms were so large that I opted to create multiple distinct spaces using groupings of furniture, promoting a more intimate atmosphere. I used a similar method in the bedrooms, designing separate sitting areas to draw attention to the possible uses of space.
My favorite room to stage, though, was the office. I kept the furniture simple–a crisp desk and a cozy chair–but I focused a lot of time and attention on the shelves along the back wall. I loved adding all of that detail. I balanced industrial metals with more delicate white ceramics and greenery to match the modern and open feel of the home. The window seat also added an interesting element to the room and proved a fun area to add both soft and industrial touches.
Each of these homes presented me with new challenges that allowed me to develop my repertoire of staging techniques. 2019 is already off to a running start, and I can’t wait to see what opportunities this year brings!