Sunday, April 29, 2012

Would You Install a Blue Appliance?

All The King's Houses
had to share another wonderful kitchen with you.

Look at the blue stove and range hood!  What a daring choice!  How about those bodacious hanging lanterns?

The white cabinets, Carrara marble, stainless steel appliances and abundance of glass (windows, upper cabinets, lanterns) could make this kitchen read too cold.  The hardwood floors, furniture surround of the island, bar stools and seating area contribute to an feeling of overall warmth and coziness.  Buyers respond to that welcoming feeling.  Emotion is behind every buy.

Staged for a Magazine--Not for Selling
Of course, this photo is styled for a photo shoot. 

If this house were being staged for sale, the majority of the accessories on the island would need to go.  The tall yellow yarrow would stay to coordinate with the yellow garden stool in the seating area.  The yarrow is also a good choice because of its height.  It draws the eye up for a buyer to appreciate the ceiling height and upper windows.  I would place the blue bowl from the island on the countertop near the range.  The blue chair, range, and bowl would make a 'color triangle' that lends cohesiveness to the space.

Also, if I were staging, I'd lose the rug behind the bar stools.  The gorgeous floors should be showcased.  (I'm not a fan the rug position either.  It looks off to me for frame of this photo.)

My point is, styling this kitchen for a photo shoot is different than staging this kitchen would be for MLS pictures.  Folks are always asking me the difference between staging and interior design.  I intend to answer this question by showing frequent examples.

What do you think about the blue stove?

If you would like your home staged, please contact me.
Linda Beam

Friday, April 27, 2012

Something's Gotta Give on Kitchens

I don't think it is breaking news that kitchens sell houes.  Kitchens are a key selling feature of a home.  Kitchens are the heart of the home, the axis of activity, the crux of inspired cooking and baking and the focus for entertaining.

Here is what's happening in kitchen design.


                                                                                            Pinterest Pictures
White Kitchens Rule                                                                                      
Yes, white kitchens are the way to go if you are renovating or updating.  White is, and always will be, classic.  White is timeless.  While white is 'on-trend' currently, it will never go out of style.  If you know you will be selling your home in the future, you can't beat white to get the biggest bang for your buck.  A kitchen renovation can promise up to an 87% return on investment.

My All Time Favorite Kitchen

I know I'm not alone on my vote for best kitchen EVER. It's from the movie, "Something's Gotta Give". 

"Something's Gotta Give" was made in 1982. (Lordy, does that make anyone else feel ancient?)  The kitchen still stands up as being timeless and wonderful!

Let me refresh your memory of this glorious kitchen.

The Check List
White cabinets. Check
Glass front uppers. Check
Gas stainless steel cook's range. Check
Stainless steel double door refrigerator. Check
Subway tile backsplash. Check
Hardwood floors. Check
Stone countertops. Check
Island so big you could perform an autopsy. Check
Built-in bookshelves. Check


What do you think about a white kitchen? Yea or Nay?

Happy Weekend, Y'all!

If you would like your home staged, please contact me.
Linda Beam

Thursday, April 26, 2012

My Favorite Bed Treatment is on Sale!

Matelasse is my favorite bed treatment. 
I just received a flyer in the mail that Matelasse is on sale at Tuesday Morning.

Here's What I Love About Matelasse:
Number 1--It's washable and comes out of the dryer ready to go!  If you have kids or pets  washablity is imperative.  I have a dog, Izzie, that sleeps on the bed.  Also, my bed is usually my office. (Color me Hugh Hefner.)  I like to work propped up on mounds of pillows and with a view of my Koi pond. 
Number 2--It stays put.  The texture provides "teeth" (we had this lesson on a previous post) so it's not going to slip and slide around.
Number 3--It's a classic.  Classic translates into 'goes with any decor'.  It can look cool on a contemporary bed or romantic on a traditional bed.
Number 4--It's reasonably priced.  Compared to many bed treatments, Matelasse is a bargain.
Number 5--It wears like cast iron.  Two thumbs up for durablity!

Go Up A Size    
I suggest you buy the next size up for your bed. I don't like skimpy bed treatments.  I have a  Queen bed; I always buy a King bedspread. 

Tuesday Morning to the Rescue
Tuesday Morning has the Matelasse pictured above on sale $79.99 for a Queen, $89.99 for a King.  How great is that?  You can drop by the store or order online.  It comes in White or Ivory.  Happy shopping!

If you need help staging your home, please contact me.
Linda Beam

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


Linda-Week 3
Hello my Weigh-In Wednesday followers!  Thanks for checking in with me the last few weeks.  To recap, I want to lose 10.8 pounds by June 1.

This week was great.  I didn't have social activities to prevent progress.  

 I did:
  • walk 13 miles. I had the incline on Level 1 most of the time.  My ankle started screaming a couple of days ago, so I backed off on the incline.
  • stick to my calorie allotment of 1200-1500 most days.
  • exercise 6 days.
I did not:
  • eat fruit as I had intended.
  • eat Toll House Chocolate Chip Macadamia cookies that my husband made Sunday. The house smelled like heaven.  He left them on the counter to cool for HOURS.  Temptation was definitely knocking at the door.

Best Find of the Week:
This Lemon Pepper Tilapa is DELICIOUS!  I'm not a 'fish person' but was clucking from eating so much chicken and tired of turkey burgers.  Mrs. Paul called to me in the grocery aisle and on on a whim I picked this up.  It was sooooo worth it.  There are two fillets in the box.  Each fillet is one serving and 70 calories.  I ate both fillets with a big salad and was satisfied.

Check out this vegetable dish I made for dinner the other night: onions, garlic, orange/red/yellow/green peppers, zucchini, squash, mushrooms, herbs and olives  I topped it with hot Salsa and a generous handful of Parmesan cheese (I counted the cheese as my protein).  It was EXCELLENT and SATISFYING. 


I am amazed at my success this week!  I lost 4.4 pounds!!!  I'm all "what?" and "huh?" at my weigh-in.  (I don't have a scale so weigh-in is always a surprize.) Honestly, I thought the scale needed to be calibrated.  I knew I had worked hard this week but that was a bigger drop than I ever anticipated.  It was the first time that I weighed when I wasn't wearing jeans and a knit much can clothes weigh?  Do you think that was it?

April 26 - May 2 Goals:
Walk 10 miles at Level 1
Exercise 5 days
1200-1500 calories

As long as the scale continues to go down, I'll be happy.

Thanks for your support. I'd love to hear from you.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Experiment for a Summer Look!

This is a  great time of year to make small changes to your decor to freshen it.  Slipcovers are a quick (albeit not easy--if you've ever wrestled to get them on straight) fix.

The sofa below is dated and the brown colors very 'blah' for Spring.  It needed to be covered.  I thought I would try something different than the traditional slipcover.  The fabric on the sofa is a nubby tapestry.  The surface of the tapestry has a 'tooth'.  Similarly, the loops in terrycloth provide a 'tooth'.  The two fabrics will grip each other and not slide too much. I thought I would try covering the sofa with a matrix of white towels.  
BEFORE - Linda Beam
I used one long towel across the back under the cushions, 10 bath towels, and 3 hand towels. 

IN PROCESS - Linda Beam
The hand towels were manipulated to fill the cracks in the middle between the cushions.  The draping continued until no brown upholstery showed.  Then came tucking in seams, adding toss pillows, and tweaking the draping. No pins, no tape, no ties--easy peasy!

AFTER - Linda Beam
It looks casual and comfortable.  A better summer look, no? 

If you need help staging your home, please contact me.
Linda Beam

Thanks for your comments!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Let Me Entertain You

I collect urns and vases in different sizes and colors for staging.  I love my collection of turquoise vases.  Spring is here and I was ready for a change in my family room.  The top of the entertainment center has not been styled since the Christmas decor was removed by my dear husband.  I broke my ankle before Christmas and only today decided I could stand it no longer, I had to conquer my fear, make the climb, and change it.

Top of Entertainment Center AFTER Spring styling
First, came the picture of, you guessed it, a turquoise vase with flowers.  I placed it in the middle.  I had to lean it against the wall because I was too chicken to get on the tippy top of the ladder and lean in with a hammer and nail. 

My intention was for my collection of 3D vases to mesh with the 2D painting. Kapeesh? I like the unity of using different shapes, heights, and colors of the same thing in an area.  Everything relates but nothing is the same. The new arrangement makes me happy.  It looks much lighter and brighter.  

Entertainment Center BEFORE when I couldn't reach it to fix it!
Here's the sad BEFORE picture.  The hammered copper tray was leaning to the left on its stand. If you look closely you'll see a couple of stray Holly berries, left over from Christmas past.  (I couldn't see the berries until I stood on a chair to take the picture.)  We don't need the lamp anymore since Daylight Savings Time kicked in. Peacock feathers have been cleaned (hair dryer) and put away.  I will use the other fat vases for staging a dining room table.  I love a chunky vase on a dining room table!

Client's Dining Room Staging

Dining Room AFTER Staging-Linda Beam
See how the gold pattern in the chunky vase coordinates with the owner's gold buffet lamps and the gilted gold corners on the mirror?  The tapestry table runner has a raised gold brocade. Can you see the gold and crimson platter on the buffet?  I was so excited when I found this chunky gold and ivory vase that coordinated with the runner and the platter.

I love my job!

If you need help staging your house, please contact me.
Linda Beam

Friday, April 20, 2012

Master The Master

Master Bedrooms are a bigidy-big deal when selling your house.  Master Bedrooms are the place your potential buyer will begin and end their day. Master Bedrooms need to show as a tranquil, peaceful getaway.  Wouldn't you love to retreat to this gorgeous room?

Cote de Texas
A Master that is cluttered and chaotic holds no appeal for buyers. Believe me, they transfer what they see in a space to how they feel about it.  Check out these pictures of a Master Bedroom before it was staged.

BEFORE - Master Bedroom - Linda Beam

BEFORE - Master Bedroom - Linda Beam

BEFORE - Master Bedroom - Linda Beam
Kind of a hot mess, huh?

The Staging: T
he windows are the main architectural feature of the room.  I placed the bed between the windows, added contemporary bedding (Target), a colorful canvas  (Tuesday Morning), and flanked the bed with nightstands and lamps (Pier 1).  A bed needs to greet a buyer from the door.  It needs to say, "Relax, refresh and revive yourself in this room."  Here is the after staging picture.

AFTER - Master Bedroom - Linda Beam
Staging is different than decorating.
This picture is a perfect example of how staging is different than decorating.  The tables are small in scale for the King sleigh bed.  However, they are perfect for staging because they allow negative space around them, making the room appear larger.  Solid wood end tables would reduce the visual field of the room.

Happy Weekend, Y'all!

If you need a help staging your home, please contact me.

I appreciate your comments.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


Thanks to everyone who has told me I am 'brave to go public' with my diet.  Muchas gracias. To recap, I launched my diet and exercise plan April 11.  My goal is to lose 10.8 pounds by June 1.

Last week I:
Exercised 6 days.
Walked 12 miles.
Recorded everything I ate--for 5 days--then was busy, (...yaahdaah, yaahdaah...).  I didn't use a food program online, as planned.

True Confessions:

Lunch at Mimi's Cafe with one of my buddies.  I had a salad and lowfat dressing. I also munch on the carrot/raisin/nut muffin that accompanied my salad. The freakin' muffin was 606 calories and 35 grams of fat! Note to self: check calorie counts online before dining out.

Girlfriend Party Saturday Night - Enjoyed laughs, snacks and Corona's. (I'm guilty; 'nuff said).

Triangle Bloggers Meet Up Sunday Night - Sipped on a Chai Latte Tea while I made the rounds.  Other girls had speciality coffee with whipped cream. I thought I was being good. Wrong-y Dong-y.  Found out Chai Latte Tea has at least 300 calories.

Hardest thing this week:
Getting motivated to walk. Some nights it was 10PM before I hit the treadmill.

The scale says:
I lost 2.8 pounds this week.  Not bad! I had hoped for more but 'you cheat; you pay'.

April 18-24 Goals 
  • Repeat intentions from last week.
  • Raise incline on treadmill to Level 1.
  • I have to start eating fruit.  I like fruit!  It's just not on my radar as a handy snack.  The reality is that I have to buy, wash, peel, slice and put it in containers. It is easier to reach for 100 calorie popcorn. I will make the effort this week.
Check back next Wednesday to see how I am succeeding!

I would love to hear from you!

I am a much better stager than dieter!  If you need help staging yourhouse, please contact me.
Linda Beam

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Triangle Bloggers Meet Up

Kate from organized a Meet Up for new bloggers in the Triangle. 

Triangle Bloggers Meet Up

Wow, blogging is growing fast and furious.  What a great opportunity for new bloggers to get together and share information.  That's me-back row, 4th from the left.

Lauren, Kate & Carrie, our hosts, at the awesome Benelux Cafe
I highly recommend Benelux Cafe.  Their special coffees and teas are delicious.  They are reknowned for their pastries, waffels and sandwichs.  If you're ever downtown in City Market Raleigh you need to go to Benelux Cafe.

Our hosts made gifts for us!  Check out the delightful wrapping of each present.  I'm a girl that loves a good presentation--and these gifts were almost too pretty to unwrap.  Thanks Kate, Lauren and Carrie!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Expert Advice is Worth the Price

I went to a lovely brick home last week for a consultation.  Included in my report, was my suggestion for the seller to update the exterior paint color. The existing color is primarily Kelly Green.  It was built in 1982.  Kelly Green was a very popular color in the 80's. 

I suggested the exterior color be updated to Sage Green.  Sage Green is a fresher, lighter shade that would be a great complement to the dark red brick.

This bungalow is a great example of the color I suggested.  The russet trim is similar to the brick of the house. Green is the complementary color to red.  Hence, the reason it is a classic combination.  Don't you agree that Sage Green has a more contemporary appeal? 

Here's a McMansion with the same color palette: sage green, russet, light trim.  Love it!

The realtor read my report and said, "The owner just had the exterior painted." ...Oh my goodness... I wish she had called me before she went to that expense.  I regularly run across home owners that take the path of least resistance. It is safer to use the same paint colors from when their house was built.

I completely get it that selecting paint colors is daunting.  But, painting the exterior of your house is expensive. It is soooooo worth it to get a professional opinion.  Hire a color specialist, an experienced stager or designer for an expert opinion.  Take pictures of your home and landscape to a paint store. The employees of Benjamin Moore and Sherwin Williams gladly share free advice.

For most folks, their home is their largest investment. When it comes to improvements and updating, get a professional opinion. 

It is always cheaper to get professional advice than make a costly mistake.

If you need help selecting paint colors, please contact me.
Linda Beam

Friday, April 13, 2012

Which Bathroom Would You Want to Buy?

Buyer's love master bathrooms!  A buyer wants to see a bathroom that looks so clean you could preform surgery in it.  Really.  Nobody wants to see a seller's personal products, worn and faded towels, reading materials, dust, grime, toilet rings, or soap scumb.  Here's a master bathroom after I staged it.   
AFTER - Linda Beam
 I lucked up and found this large picture (Pier 1) for the wall above the ledge over the tub.  I added a huge green urn with rust colored grass (and a tassel for a little cha-cha) to add texture.  The urn is sitting on old books. (Get it? Reading in the soaking tub.)  I always add candles in the master bath for a bit of romance.  The glass and metal tray has a variety of elegant bath soaps, salts, a sponge and brush.  The tall green and brown vase is to distract from the screaming white outlet behind it.

AFTER - Linda Beam (sorry for the flash)

I found this large textural print rug that coordinates with the picture from Pier 1.  I don't like matchy-matchy.  I think it is much more interesting when you use something that relates rather than matches.  I used a simple green pottery vase with white silk orchids between the sinks.  The white/green combo always looks 'spring-time fresh'.  The crimson hand towels picks up the color of the flowers in the painting and rug.

AFTER - Linda Beam

AFTER- Linda Beam

I kept it simple around the tub.  Crimson, crimson, crimson: rolled towels on a stand, silk orchid, towels on bar.  This area needed color!

HERE ARE THE BEFORE PICTURES.  Big difference, no? 

BEFORE - Linda Beam

BEFORE - Linda Beam

BEFORE - Linda Beam (sorry for flash & reflection of moi!)

Happy Weekend, Y'all!

If you need helping staging your house for sale, please contact me!
Linda Beam

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Two IS Better Than One for Drama, Darlin'

You know how you feel when you see something that obviously is better but because it's always been done the same way for a zillion years you just follow suit? (A "Why didn't I think of that moment?")

Well, looky here!  Two shower curtains on the same rod.  Genius, no?  I love this idea.  Tubs aren't very pretty.  Plumbing fixtures not so lovely, either.  Two shower curtains adds drama and covers up the less desirable features of the bathtub and shower area.  And how much fun is this mirror art above the tub?

Talk about drama, look at this box valance!  It certainly makes a statement in this small bathroom.  Notice that mounting the shower curtains at the ceiling gives it a regal appearance.

The two shower curtain trick is an inexpensive design idea that anyone can implement to make a dramatic change in your bathroom.

If you need help staging your home for sale, please contact me.
Linda Beam

Comments on one shower curtain or two are appreciated!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012


OK folks, the only thing this post has to do with staging is my job will be easier if I lose weight.  There is a lot of lifting, hauling, bending and stretching in staging.  It will be easier to accomplish a day of staging if I'm lighter and more in shape.  I figure if I go public with my diet and exercise, the accountability will help me stick to the plan. 

Grimicing at Weigh-In
 Here's the deal.  I want to drop 10.8 pounds by June 1.  I weighed-in today on a tell-all-digital-scale.

That's 7 weeks to get to my goal weight. 

It should be doable.  (Unfortunately, I haven't succeeded in my other attempts since the first of the year.)

My plan?  (April 11-17)

  • Stick to 1200 (no more than 1500) calories most days.  
  • Use calorie counter program to track my diet. 
  • Exercise 5 days this week. 
  • Aim for walking 10 miles this week.
My Fear? 
  • I have several social things line up this week.
  • I have a busy schedule (who doesn't?) this week.
Wish me luck!  Check in on me next Wednesday to see my progress.

I am a far better stager than dieter.  If you would like help staging your home for sale, please contact me.

Linda Beam

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Check Out Catawba Furniture Outlet Mall

Hickory, NC is the furniture capital of the East Coast.  Hickory has discount  furniture outlets for folks without deep pockets. I visited the Catawba Outlet Mall this past weekend. 

I love this funky 60's style console table, pink lamp, the white 'genie' vases and retro floor lamp!  The colorful flower picture completes the cool vignette.  It made me happy.

This table is supposed to be for dining. 
I would love it for an office desk.
Check out the lamp behind the table. 
It was $238.00, I believe. 
(I think I'll stick with Target's knockoff.)

                              Check out the fabulous green framed
                                                   Monster Mirror (on the back wall).  Awesome!
                                             Large white accessories were everywhere. 
                  This store boasted 50% off.   

Fell in love with this red leather chair!
The lines were perfect and it was comfortable. 
I adored the details like the nail head trim and carved legs.

It would even fit in my SUV.

It didn't have a price tag on it.
I had to track down a salesperson to get a price check.

Cheery Sales Woman looked up from her catalogue with a smile "$635!"
"No. Thank You."
But in the words of Opie Taylor, "Ain't she a beauty, Paw?"

I thought of my blogging buddy, Maria Killam, when I saw this awesome orange table.  Maybe she needs it for her new house!

Here's the storefront for the awesome orange table.

Deflated from my lack of a purchase at the Furniture Outlet Mall, I moved on to Hobby Lobby.  We don't have a Hobby Lobby in Raleigh and I always find something to bring home.   

I ended up with acrylic dishes in mix and match colors and patterns. I bought 4 sets of square dinner  and salad plates and bowls. It will be fun using them for summer entertaining!  Hey at 40% off, I was a hap, hap, happy girl!

So ends my tour of Hickory.  Thanks for joining me.

If you would like help staging your home for sale, please call me!
Linda Beam