Feng Shui Staging Tips

Feng Shui is a philosophy that has been used in china for hundreds of years. Using Feng Shui in a home has been a popular “must” for common Chinese buyers lately, but many non-Chinese people have also began to appreciate the Feng Shui philosophy. Feng Shui which literally means “wind-water” promotes well being by rearranging how chi, or energy flows through the home. Now Feng Shui is a common philosophy used in the United States to appeal to potential buyers.

“Everything we associate with staging — from clearing the clutter to making the place smell good to sprucing up the entryway — are all feng shui strategies, she says.”(Terah Kathryn Collins, author of “The Western Guide to Feng Shui” ) A few strategic Feng Shui improvements can increase the value, emotional appeal, and marketability of your house and solve design and structural challenges, especially in a slow real estate market.   

1. Make your Entrance Inviting & Welcoming HGTV says “Energy enters your home at the front door, so invite it in! Make your door stand out by painting it a color that contrasts with your home, adding a new welcome mat and flanking the door with plants. Choose plants with rounded leaves as sharp leaves can appear aggressive.

  • Also, use a welcome mat that is fit to proportion with the door and frame the doorway with matching pots of red flowers or evergreen trees on both sides for extra attention.
  • Clear any trees or bushes that are blocking any windows or the front of the house, create and inviting path leading them into the house.
  • Keep Lawn tidy & trimmer

Ensuring that there are cohesive accents throughout the outside of your house is key for maintaining curb appeal. Check out this house's matching white trim and plant containers.        Pretty, inviting front door. Side Note:  houses with bright doors sell quicker. It's a fact.

2. First Impression The room of first impression is the most important room, it is where you want to direct buyers first. Have the directional flow of  the entrywalove the huge mirror on the floor...always makes a statement in a room w/out lot of other wall decory point buyers toward this “first impression” room, use a large center point artwork, or a rug that leads them to this room.

  • Use mirrors to reflect outdoor views.
  • If the “first impression” is the living room, place the sofa in the furthers point of the room, facing the entry, creating a “open-arms welcome to the buyers”. this tells the buyer to come on in!
  • You want the Positive Energy to move freely through the home, as well as the buyers. Arrange furniture so that when you walk into your living room, you don’t see the  back of a sofa.
  • Buyers usually decide whether they will buy a home within the first 8 seconds after they open the door.

3. Enhance the Bagua Areas | Furniture Arrangement

This is a little more abstract tip, but bagua is an energy map of space used in Feng Shui. In real Estate, their is the career, buyer, fame wealth, and abundance areas of a home. The buyer area would be located in the “first impression” room.

Food Picture - Apple Photograph - Kitchen Wall Art - Kitchen Decor - Bowl of Apples - Red, teal, rustic - Fruit, food still life 8x10.

  • ” To activate fame chi — the center rear of the house — add a fire element like moving a fire pit or BBQ grill to the outside center of the house, or have a bowl of fiery, red apples in the kitchen” (Sell Your Home With Feng Shui (AuthorHouse, 2007)).
  • Create good traffic flow to improve chi, you don’t want a potential buyer to run into the corner of a sofa, when they turn into a room, this will make them feel cramped and claustrophobic. If the back of a sofa faces the rooms entrance energy will bounce right out. “You want the positive energy” — and the buyers themselves — to be able to move freely through the home” says Jayme Barrett, author of “Feng Shui Your Life.
  • When choosing artwork keep in mind that, “Nature scenes are soothing and will relax the buyers,” Barrett says”. Make sure to also put away those personal family photos and religious and spiritual icons, says Barrett.

Abby M. Interiors: swanky living room inspiration 4. Feng Shui in the Rest Room

Keep all toilet lids closed, this seems like an obvious one but in Feng Shui this serves a different reason, “Water represents money and the toilet is the one place where water/money escapes,” Barrett says” (BankRate.com). Instead, “You can place a small tabletop water fountain either at the entrance or in the back left corner of the home, which is the wealth corner,” she says. “Moving water circulates prosperity energy throughout the home.”” (BankRate.com).

  •  “Place thriving plants and flowers in the corners of the room,” Barrett says. That will “enliven the home and create harmony.”hanging plant holders
  • Don’t let energy down the drain | drains take energy from a room keep drains covered when not in use 
  • keep the bathroom door closed, if the bathroom is near the entrance of a home

5. No Clutter | Move furniture you spend the most time on away from beams or ceiling fans.

  • Remove clutter and depersonalize. clutter prevents energy from flowing through the room. Clear out knickknacks, and other personal items.
  • According to the principles of Feng Shui clutter robs a space of its Chi. 
  • Care2.com suggests that, “Ceiling fans register to the reptilian brain as spinning knives overhead, and beams as a heavy object about to fall on us. Especially move beds, desks and favorite chairs away from under these, or remove the fans all-together (replace with friendlier looking blades) and cover the beams over beds with fabric”

6. Other Tips to Create good Chi

  • Put away anything with sharp edges, including any butcher-block knife sets.
  • HGTV suggests to stimulate your homes energy with sound by adding a wind chime to the front right corner of your house. This area of the home is considered the “buyers area” of the home.
  • A large mirror in a dining room reflects the food on the table and is very beneficial, as in effect, it doubles the amount of food available.
  •  A large red potted plant near the front door.
  • Books represent education and should be displayed.
  • A water feature in the foyer such as an aquarium or a fountain.
  • In the master bedroom, place a live bouquet of flowers.
  • Only use pairs in the master bedroom — two candles, two picture frames, etc.
  • Open all blinds, curtains, shutters and drapes. Light attracts good ch’i.
  • Make sure your home smells good, have fresh cookies baking in the oven. Or use inviting scents like apple or cinnamon.

This custom dining-room cedar table can seat up to 16 -- that's one big dinner party!   Attic book shelf; You could never do this with Kindles. Books as decorations. The a-frame is accentuated and the French doors open the space and make it one.

An indoor water feature for your home and adds modern style. Did you know installing a decorative fountain inside your home will benefit the local air quality? Its true. Never has there been a time than now to redefine the interior of your home. With so many styles  www.waterfeaturesupply.com/waterfalls/wall-water-features-indoor.html



Contemporary Kitchen Cabinets

Contemporary kitchen cabinets are generally composed of minimal ornamentation and flat surfaces. The cabinetry style is intentionally non-traditional, avoiding decorative moldings in favor of simplicity and function.

A Black and White Kitchen with Contemporary Cabinets
This black and white kitchen features contemporary cabinets by ALNO, AG. [+] More Pictures

Historic Influences: Contemporary kitchen designs date from the 1940s to the present, and trace many of their stylistic origins in Europe.

Contemporary Kitchen Cabinets    Contemporary Kitchen Cabinets     Contemporary Kitchen Cabinets

Elements of Style: For a clean and spacious look, contemporary kitchen design typically avoids excess ornamentation. Crown molding, wood carvings, and raised panel door styles are almost never used. Small spaces can be made to feel bigger if there is less visual stimulation. Therefore the relatively flat surfaces found in contemporary kitchens can be of benefit to smaller modern homes.

Materials: Most materials in contemporary kitchen designs are man-made, including metal, plastic, concrete, glass, and recycled goods. While these man-made materials can often feel cold and sterile, many designers like to incorporate natural elements such as wood veneer and natural stone to bring some warmth back into the room. Simple decorations such as a potted plant or a bowl of fruit can also give your kitchen a more natural ambiance.

Contemporary Kitchen Cabinets     Contemporary Kitchen Cabinets       Contemporary Kitchen Cabinets

Color Schemes: Many contemporary kitchens have monochromatic color schemes, featuring various combinations of black, white, and gray. These kitchens tend to look very modern and sharp. Some contemporary designs, however, incorporate unique colors or exotic wood in order to create a visual impact and showcase the homeowner’s favorite materials or hues.

Kitchen Design Photos: Below are some pictures of kitchens featuring contemporary cabinets.

Contemporary Kitchen Cabinets   Contemporary Kitchen Cabinets     Contemporary Kitchen Cabinets

Read more: http://www.kitchen-design-ideas.org/contemporary-kitchen-cabinets.html#ixzz2iaPib6pn

Kitchen Bar Stools: Sitting in Style

More than just a chair: Kitchen bar stools aren’t just for sitting down to eat at the counter. They can add a profound decorative statement to your kitchen while also providing a perfect place to relax and socialize in your home.

Although bar stools were originally designed for use in bars, as the name implies, these furniture pieces made their way to the kitchen fairly quickly when high countertops required taller chairs. In this idea guide, we want to help you make an informed decision when it comes to selecting the right stools for your kitchen.

Comfy and stylish: These creamy leather bar stools reflect the style of this kitchen nicely.
Comfy and stylish: These creamy leather bar stools reflect the style of this kitchen nicely. Designed by Woodale Designs.

Kitchen Bar Stool Styles

When choosing a bar stool, you should not only look at style and design, but also its purpose. Do they only provide seating for a quick breakfast or a chat in the kitchen, or are they meant for longer lunches and dinners? The time you and your guests are going to spend in the chairs should be a key factor in your decision. You will have to look at chairs with comfortable padding, foot rests and back rests. However, the chair should also suit your kitchen, which is why you will have several style options to choose from, with many different designs that will work well with your specific interior.

Retro & Vintage Bar Stools

Retro bar chairs can really draw the eye and create a focal point. They are usually available in bold colors and contain a lot of shiny chrome. Cherry red is an all-time favorite, but you also get them in pink, blue, purple and basically all the colors of the rainbow. These chairs are great if you have a funky, retro kitchen design or you are trying to recreate the 1950’s diner look.

A Modern Take on a Retro Kitchen with Curved Red Cabinets, Chrome Accents, Retro Bar Stools
Some Like it Hot: A modern twist on a retro kitchen with curved red cabinets, stainless and chrome accents, and retro bar stools. [+] More Pictures
These chrome and black leather kitchen bar stools have a retro feel.
These chrome and black leather kitchen bar stools have a retro feel. See more of this kitchen on the Woodale Designs portfolio gallery.

Mediterranean & Rustic Bar Stools

If you have a rustic kitchen, with a lot of wood and country-style decor, your bar stools should match this look. A simple wooden design will work perfectly in such a kitchen but will not necessarily be comfortable unless you go for an upholstered seat. Leather chairs also work well with the rustic look, but instead of the slick, modern black or white leather, stick to the browns. Wicker is also a great material that adds to the rustic look and is surprisingly comfortable to sit on. Fabric seats are also fine, as long as the print is in muted colors and not too funky.

Mediterranean & Rustic Bar Stools
Rustic Bar Stool in a Log Home Kitchen
A rustic bar hand-made bar stool fits nicely in this log home kitchen.[+] More Pictures

Victorian, Wrought Iron, & Steampunk Bar Stools

Steampunk is a style that is gaining popularity and also making its way into our interiors, including kitchens. If you are going for the Steampunk look for your kitchen interior, go for chairs with ornate ball and claw feet. Anything with machine-like properties and an industrial look will also go well with a Steampunk kitchen. Wrought iron designs in a Victorian style are also very suitable.

Wrought iron bar stools with woven seats in an old world kitchen
Wrought iron bar stools with woven seats cast intriguing shadows in this old world kitchen.[+] More Pictures

Elegant & Traditional Bar Stools

If you have a more formal picture in mind and are simply looking for something elegant, black leather is always a good option. These chairs are both comfortable and stylish. There is also a wide range of very elegant upholstered chairs available, with stylish patterns. Faux suede is also a good choice and will blend in nicely with the rest of the kitchen interior.

Kitchen counter-height rattan bar stools in a dark tobacco finish with woven backrests and upholstered seats
These elegant counter-height bar stools feature a dark tobacco finish on rattan frames with woven backrests and upholstered seats. [+] More Pictures
These traditional golden-brown bar stools are a good match for a Tuscan kitchen
These traditional golden-brown bar stools are a good match for a Tuscan style kitchen such as this.

Modern & Contemporary Bar Stools

Contemporary kitchens are often small, which is why space saving bar chairs are quite popular. You can, for instance, install “floating” chairs that attach to the island and simply swivel out when used and can be folded back neatly afterward. Contemporary bar stool designs are usually minimalist, with flowing, curvy lines or very geometric shapes.

Classy and minimal modern kitchen bar stools
These modern kitchen bar stools are classy and minimal — a great complement to this award-winning space by Designer Kitchens LA.
Blue bar stools provide a pop of color in this monochromatic kitchen
Blue bar stools provide a bold pop of color in this monochromatic kitchen (also created byDesigner Kitchens LA).

Great contemporary designs are not hard to find; they are readily available from modern furniture stores such as UK-based Forrest Furnishing. Colors often include high-contrast black and white, bold colors, or beige and earthen tones.

Size and Space Considerations

Now that we’ve covered different bar stool styles, it’s important to go over some functional basics about kitchen seating:

  1. How high should a kitchen bar stool be?
    For comfort, a stool’s seat should be about 12 inches lower than the countertop surface. Since a typical bar counter is 42″ high, use a standard bar stool with a 30″ seat height. Single-level island countertops are normally 36″ high and require 24″ counter stools, while kitchen desks are usually 30″ high with normal chairs at 18″ seat height.
  2. How many bar stools will fit along your countertop?
    Most people prefer at least 2 feet of space to themselves when sitting for a meal, so a 6-foot island should comfortably seat three adults. Wider kitchen bar stools with arm rests will require more space, so only use the 2-feet-per-stool rule as a bare minimum when planning your seating arrangement, and be sure to measure for your own setup.
  3. What about shapes and features?
    Saddle seats, round stools, chair-backs, arm rests… these will all depend on both the style and comfort you’re looking for. Keep in mind that rounded shapes take up less space and are easier to walk around; that goes for both the countertop shape and the bar stool itself.

Looking for more kitchen seating inspiration? Check out our gallery of Kitchen IslandsKitchen Bar Stools, and Kitchen Chairs & Tables on Pinterest.


Take a look @ one of our own listings Wet Bar w/Bar Stool Chairs:

wet bar

Read more: http://www.kitchen-design-ideas.org/kitchen-bar-stools.html#ixzz2h4yI9GyA

What Not To Do When Selling Your Home

Now that it’s time to sell your home, you’re probably trying to make sure you get everything right.  You don’t want to make any mistakes that could cost you a top dollar sale.  However, there are many common mistakes that sellers often make.  Not because they don’t know any better, but because they truly believe they are right despite what their realtor is telling them.  Here are some of the most common seller mistakes that could easily be avoided.

  Here is an example of a presentable master bedroom for showings

1.  Don’t overprice your house.  We know you have lived in and loved your house and you’re probably emotionally attached to it on many different levels.  However, no matter how much you have put into the house or how many upgrades you have completed or how much you owe on it, your home is only worth what the market is willing to pay for it.  Even if yours is the best house on the block.

2.  You must remove all clutter and all personal items.   Your buyers need to be able to picture themselves living in your home and they can’t do that if they see your personal decor and your family pictures, etc. all around the house.  You need to keep it as neutral as possible.  Additionally, by keeping everything to a minimum, you will make your house appear bigger and cleaner.  So go ahead and pack up anything you aren’t using and store it until you are ready to move.  You have to pack anyway and this is a great way to get a  jump on things.

Presentable Family Room- from our listing 45 Eastfield.

With all clutter removed.

3.  Be prepared for lowball offers.  Lower than asking price offers are inevitable.  You will receive lowball offers but don’t get offended and whatever you do don’t ignore them.  This is your chance to negotiate a better offer.  You can’t blame the buyer.  Some sellers will accept a low ball offer if they are in a desperate situation.  But that doesn’t mean you have to.   Just take some time and try to get the buyer up to a price that is agreeable to both of you.

4.  If something is broken – fix it.  And that means everything!  Never neglect to fix something that is broken no matter how small it is.  The minute your buyer sees something that needs to be repaired, they will begin to look for anything else that may be wrong with your house.  Additionally, it will cause them to wonder just how well you have maintained the house over the years.  Once the buyer is in this mindset, it’s very difficult to change it back.

5.  Don’t skimp on the marketing.  About 80% of homebuyers will start their home search on the internet.  The internet offers them thousands of options from which to choose.  If you only have a few low quality pictures of your home and most every other ad has plenty of high quality pictures, as well as, virtual tours; which ads do you think they are going to click on?  Yep, that’s right – the ones with the great pictures and virtual tours.  Talk to your realtor about how to get the most out of your advertising.

    Clean & presentable decor ready for marketing.

Taken from one of our listings on the market.

Selling your home doesn’t have to be a chore.  Allow your realtor to guide you in the right direction.  Your realtor has the experience to sell your home quickly and to help get you the highest selling price possible.  Therefore, take his advice and know that he is doing everything in your best interest.

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10 Great Kitchen Appliances for Entertaining

Kitchen Appliances for Entertaining: Looking forward to hosting family, friends and guests at your home? Then you’ll definitely want to know about the top appliances that are fantastic party tools for any special event.

These devices — from basic food prep gadgets to larger catering-style machines — help you save time in and out of the kitchen, so you can get back to the important task of enjoying your company.

Top Kitchen Appliances for Entertaining: A built-in ice maker is a great help if you entertain frequently.

A built-in ice maker is a great help if you entertain frequently.

1. Ice Maker: It’s always a pain to run out of ice in the middle of a party, so why not make your own? A dedicated ice maker does that for you, so you’ll never have to step out to grab ice from the store. Unlike your fridge, an ice maker has more than enough capacity to make enough ice to satisfy guests and then some.

2. Wine Fridge: For those who entertain guests frequently with the finest wines available, a wine fridge is definitely a must-have. In addition to quick access, your wines will stay at a cool pre-set temperature. Dual-zone units are available for keeping a wider variety of wines around.

Top Kitchen Appliances for Entertaining: A wine cooler makes a great addition to a kitchen island, if you have the space for it.

Available in various capacities for unique storage needs, a wine cooler makes a great addition to a kitchen island, if you have the space for it.

3. Food Processor: It takes time to slice, chop, knead and shred those ingredients you need for party appetizers and the like. Why waste time on that when a food processor gets the job done in a fraction of the time? A food processor with a strong motor will last you through countless special events while the variable speeds let you chop, slice and mix almost any food you could think of.

4. Meat Thermometer: Okay, the last thing you want to do is poison your guests! Take all of the guesswork out of cooking chicken, beef or pork with an accurate and highly reliable meat thermometer. The most popular types of meat thermometers include the “ovenproof” thermometer, which remains in the food throughout the cooking process and the instant-read thermometer with a probe that measures internal temperatures quickly.

5. Blender: While food processors deal with chopping, grinding and mixing foods, a blender is the perfect tool for making delicious fruit smoothies, margaritas and even condiments like salad dressings. Don’t be afraid to have the two side-by-side during dinner parties.

6. Stand Mixers: When you have guests coming over, prep time is in short supply. Having a mixer in the kitchen makes for a great time-saver, plus it saves you from having to wrestle with a whisk or a spoon. You can use a stand mixer to your advantage for whipping potatoes, beating batter and kneading dough or use a portable hand-held mixer to fluff eggs and mix lighter foods. Don’t be afraid to have both types around, as each one has its own set of advantages in the kitchen.

Top Kitchen Appliances for Entertaining: Save time and elbow grease with a stand mixer. This one is built onto a mechanized cabinet lift.

Save time and elbow grease with a stand mixer. This one is built onto a mechanized cabinet lift.

7. Crockpot: Having a crockpot on hand is a quick and fun way of cooking those delicious appetizers. From nachos to chili, beans and meatballs, you can whip up a wide variety of appetizing dishes for your guests in little to no time at all. As a bonus, crockpot cooking gives your dishes that delicious slow cooked taste. At our family parties, a triple crock pot server is a huge hit, and a consistent source of compliments.

8. Fondue Pot: A fondue pot is a fancy and fun way to serve up desserts, entrees, and hors d’oeuvres. Make delicious cheese dips for bread sticks, or try decadent chocolate dessert fondues. If you’re going all out for a wedding reception or fancy gathering, take desert a step further with a chocolate fountain!

9. Electric Griddles: No report on appliances for entertaining is complete without mention of the wide array of specialty electric griddles, from full-sized grills to specialized quesadilla makers, hot dog machines, pretzel makers, and waffle irons. You can leave these out on a table or countertop for friends & family to informally serve themselves, or use these griddles in advance to more quickly mass-produce your party food.

10. Ice Cream & Popcorn! It’s not just the kids who love a good old fashioned ice cream for dessert. You can wow and impress friends, family and guests by making your own homemade ice cream or frozen yogurt with easy-to-use machines. The best thing about having your own ice cream machine is the boundless creativity; you can make any flavor of ice cream you want in as much quantity as your dinner guests desire. For kids’ summer parties, a snow cone maker is a fairly popular choice.

If you’re going all out, give your guests the full Disneyland Main Street experience by also adding a cotton candy maker or popcorn maker to the scene. From simple counter-top models to old-fashioned carnival style circus carts, nothing makes a party hop like a popcorn machine. While they aren’t exactly appropriate for a formal dinner gathering, carnival-style popcorn machines are perfect for kid-friendly summer parties and wedding receptions.

Get the Party Going

It’s not always easy to keep friends and family entertained during those special events. Fortunately, these appliances really make the difference when it comes to throwing that perfect brunch or dinner party. These and other catering-style food prep-machines are surprisingly easy to find at various department stores and specialty cooking outlets.

What do you think? Can you suggest any more great appliances for entertaining? Let us know in the comments below, or shoot us an email on our contact page. With a little prep, and a great tool set, your home can be host to some fantastic gatherings!