I moved into this house 6-months ago. I unpacked. I got a new area rug and a new couch. And thats it! No painting. No decorating. Only 1 picture hung (and only because the nail was already there and in the right spot). Partly because I’m waiting to paint. Partly because my brain can’t handle it right now!
Don’t get me wrong, I usually love decorating my house. But right now I have 18-month old twins. Yesterday I spent an afternoon trying to fold one basket of laundry before giving up and just letting the girls play with it. Forget attempting to paint something or hang a picture while they are home with me! Lately, I’ve even given up on trying to be super productive at nap time, because mama needs a minute to not clean — or think!
A lot of the time – ok most of the time – this is what my house looks like.
So when I heard about home redesign I was intrigued. Someone will come into my house and tell me the best ways to use the stuff I already have so I don’t have to spend a ton of money on new stuff? Sold. She will have ideas for paint colors? Done. Because I spent an hour staring at paint chips in Home Depot recently, and I came home with about a million shades of aqua for the girls’ room and one gray option for the living room that I don’t even like. To be fair, I was sleep deprived — but I usually am.
Enter Katie Hughes, owner of Revealed Home Staging. We connected via email and setup a time for her to come over. I picked a day when the girls would be at school so that I could give her my complete attention. And we met at 12pm which gave me 3 hours to speed clean the house after taking the girls to school — mom win! I was worried I would need to do a lot of pre-work, but she just told me to think about the space I wanted to redesign and my goals for the space. That I could handle.
The space driving me up the wall is the living room. We bought this particular house because we needed more space — twins! — but also because of how open it is. So what did we do? We filled the living room with the biggest couch we could find to make it feel small. Not only that, the couch doesn’t fit quite right, so you can’t see the tv all that well and it drives my husband nuts (ok it bugs me too). So my primary goal was to figure out a better furniture arrangement. I also want the space to feel a little bit more grown up. I have 18-month old twins so there is bound to be kid stuff all over, but every room is starting to look like a daycare so it’s time to corral the toys to key locations — and setup the playroom in the finished basement (another reason we picked this house).
Katie came in and I instantly felt comfortable with her. I was really nervous and self conscious to have her come over. Here comes this professional designer into my not-designed home with a wall color I can only describe as dirty beige and shiny gold accents all over. She looked passed all of the little annoying things that have been tripping me up for months and saw the big picture. And once she saw it, I started to see it too. I showed her the space, we talked a little bit about my goals and styles that I liked, and then I showed her around the rest of the house so that she could get a sense of the pieces I have to work with. A big part of what she does is identifies items that could work better for you that you already have. Not only did I love this approach because of the cost savings, it made me fall in love with my stuff again. I mean I did like it at one point — I bought it after all! — so it was fun to find that appreciation for my things again.
She then started to sketch and throw out ideas as she was brainstorming. I was sucked right in. Everything she suggested was amazing. We rearranged the furniture to get ideas right there on the spot. And we even picked paint colors! An hour in Home Depot got me nowhere, and 5 minutes in to looking at paint chips with Katie and the perfect colors are picked out!
I was ready to go big or go home and paint all of the wood and commit to buying more furniture, but she convinced me to go in steps. Maybe I will like the wood trim better once the walls are a better color. Try using the furniture I already have before just running out to buy something new.
In the 3 days between meeting Katie and getting her final Redesign Report (she is fast!), I fell in love with my home all over again. I was just so motivated and excited about the place I get to call home! The report is super detailed with ideas of what we discussed as well as suggestions for things I could buy if I want to and sketches of the plan for the room. I found a painter, moved a cable outlet, and moved furniture at warp speed just because I was so excited for what this room was going to look and feel like.
A sketch from the Redesign Report
Her ideas included repurposing 2 chairs and a piece of furniture that were pretty much unused in the basement, removing the coat hooks that always looked cluttered by the front door and — gasp — actually using the front closet, rearranging the couch, and moving the TV. She picked out a modern ceiling fan option that I loved and some ideas for home accents to add in to make the space look a bit more finished.
Now, I am not all the way done yet, but the living room feels so good! I hired a painter because we have really high ceilings, but I decided that I was going to paint the trim myself to save a little money. Shocker — the trim isn’t quite done yet. (FYI painting trim is super annoying.) I still need to order some window treatments, have some family photos printed for what will be the gallery wall, and buy some more of those home accents to make the space look finished. But I am so excited about what this room is becoming. And now I have a plan, so when I see those cute decor pieces on my all too frequent trips to Target and TJMaxx, I am making good purchases that I can actually use!
Who knew what a difference a good ceiling fan could make?!
I am starting to think about the other projects that I need to tackle — and this house has it’s fair share — but I am actually excited to take them on! And I have Katie’s number on speed dial, because with her help I will get through them a lot faster, and without breaking the bank! Are you selling your house? In addition to home redesign, Revealed Home Staging also offers home staging services!