Denim Design: The Jean-Look Is Hitting Home Decor

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

If you thought jeans were just for wearing, you are mistaken. Denim is becoming a hot fabric in home décor. We’re seeing denim sofa coverings, pillows, table runners, ottomans, rugs and bedding.

Denim is being lumped into a bigger trend of using more “utility fabrics” in home décor. Besides denim, those trending utility fabrics also include burlap, grain sacks, and drop cloths. All of these are heavier fabrics but they can add texture in designing your space. Another bonus: These utility fabrics are known for being less expensive and durable. That helps make denim great for rugs, sofas, or even a kid or teens’ bedroom. Denim wears and washes well so it can also be a great choice for high-traffic areas of the home.

 

Blue is really taking off as the “it” color in home design this year, and obviously blue denim fits right into that. A more mainstream use of the jean trend may come from denim-inspired blue paint finishes on furnishings or on kitchen or bathroom cabinets.

 

Can denim make a lasting enough impression on home decor to stick around? It’s a heavy fabric and it doesn’t exactly give off a cozy vibe. But in some areas of home design, it may very well find a niche.

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Show Us How You Staged It!

Calling all stagers and real estate professionals! We want to see your best photos of staging the following areas in a home:

  • The Entryway
  • Fireplace
  • Master Retreat

Do you have a photo to share showing off how you perfectly staged these areas? If so, please email Realtor Magazine writer Melissa Dittmann Tracey at mtracey@realtors.org. You and your work could be spotlighted in an upcoming photo gallery spotlighting our favorites at REALTOR® Magazine online.

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Make a Bigger Statement in the Kitchen: Stylish Hoods

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

That spot over the stove is prime real estate in the kitchen these days. Lately that space is being reserved for a decorative hood, which is becoming almost like a centerpiece of the kitchen.

Stainless steel hoods have been all the rage in recent years. But brass hoods and decorative wood ones with detailing are also proving to be popular choices. Check out some of these hood styles incorporated into kitchens from designers posting their work at Houzz.

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Why Is This Hairy Chair Popping Up Everywhere?

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

Love it or hate it, faux fur furniture is having a big moment in home design, and you’ll spot it creeping up in a lot more interiors lately.

The faux fur trend started off as sheepskin throws over the sofa or as a fluffy accent pillow. But now that furry trend is coming to furniture. And it’s no longer just a hot dorm accessory, but you’ll also spot it being incorporated into more sophisticated living rooms too.

Here’s why it’s becoming a go-to accessory: It adds texture to a room. Texture can help make a room more visually appealing and add warmth to a space. And a statement chair of faux fur certainly adds a lot of texture! Check out how designers incorporated this now infamous chair into some of the designs below.

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Staged to Sell: A Vintage Cottage in Need of Some TLC

Home stager: Kelly Kurtz, a licensed REALTOR(R) with Exit Options Real Estate and founder of Simply Well Simply Organized

The home: This cottage was located in a small community in Groton, Mass. The home was rundown, and the owner had accumulated years of belongings that were scattered everywhere. Kurtz knew the home needed a deep cleaning and some staging to make it appealing to a buyer, without sacrificing the owner’s potential for profit by listing it under market value. Kurtz took the strategy of decluttering and cleaning the property but purposely muted her staging accessories to fit the style of the property. The home, which was built in 1925, was listed for $249,900.

BEFORE

AFTER – Photo Credit: Kelly Kurtz, Exit Options Real Estate

 

BEFORE

AFTER – Photo Credit: Kelly Kurtz, Exit Options Real Estate

 

BEFORE

AFTER – Photo Credit: Kelly Kurtz, Exit Options Real Estate

Kurtz’s Staging Tips:

1. Work with the “feel” of the property. In this cottage, there already was a “vintage feel” so Kurtz knew shiny, new accessories wouldn’t work. The home’s kitchen was last updated in the 1950s, and so she worked with what she had. She weaved in timeless accessories–like a red kettle on the stovetop and tea towel curtain valances–to bring out the vintage charm already present in the space. She added a vintage kitchen stool by the laundry area and a chrome rimmed high-top table and colored stools in a sitting room off the kitchen, which fit more a 1950s decor style.

Photo Credit: Kelly Kurtz, Exit Options Real Estate

2. Fit the home to the likely buyer. Kurtz envisioned what type of buyer might live there. She added simple accessories that would appeal to that demographic. Kurtz staged the home with inspiration that a young couple who possibly had a small, younger family would be drawn to the home’s location, square footage, and budget.

3. Highlight any unique features. Kurtz knew the vintage stove might be one of the first items that many real estate professionals would recommend replacing, but instead she sought to accentuate it. The new owners could then decide to keep or toss it after they closed on the home, but it was all part of the vintage feel she tried to create.

 

Have a home you recently staged that you’d like to show off here at Styled Staged & Sold? Submit your staging photos for consideration, along with three to five of your best spruce-up tips. Contact Melissa Dittmann Tracey at mtracey@realtors.org.

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It’s Easy Being Green: How to Add This Year’s Hottest Hues of Green to Your Décor

Photo Credit: Crate and Barrel

By Laura Love Bardell, guest contributor

This year in home decor, green is really having a moment. Far from being a short-lived trend, however, this verdant color is definitely here to stay. Luckily for us, green goes with just about everything, and it’s easy to incorporate into any room of your home.

Add some life.

The simplest way to add green into your home decor is with botanicals, which blend effortlessly into any color scheme. Place a cluster of potted succulents on the coffee table, and fill that empty corner behind the sofa with a statement fiddle leaf fig tree. In spaces that lack sufficient natural light for live plants, consider faux varieties. With advances in manufacturing techniques, many artificial plants look just as convincing as the real thing and require no maintenance.

Accessorize.

In rooms with a neutral color palette, use green accessories to add a pop of color or texture. Swap out existing window treatments with curtains featuring botanical leaf prints or patterns. Layer throw pillows and blankets on the living room sofa. Avoid choosing all solid color pillows as the effect can be a bit flat; instead opt for complementary patterns and textures for a fresh, updated look.

Style your bookcase or end table with a vibrant emerald centerpiece bowl, or intersperse green vases with on-trend marble decor on the console table for a chic, of-the-moment look. For a bolder statement, consider a kelly-green statement wall, palm print wall decals, or a luxe velvet sofa in a rich olive hue.

Mix it up.

Beyond neutral palettes, green works beautifully in any number of color schemes. Many shades mix easily with black and white; use this combination for a classic, timeless aesthetic. Juxtapose a muted lime green with pops of red, orange, and yellow for a playful, energized space. Paler hues mix well with pastels or jewel tones offer a rich, vibrant look.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Laura Love Bardell  writes for  Crate and Barrel,  where  she creates design-savvy content on the latest home-furnishing trends. Laura enjoys giving tips for how to use furniture creatively for any space, big or small.

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Spruce Up Your Listing’s Front Stoop With a Taste of Fall

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

Orange can be a great color for adding curb appeal, and it fits perfectly into the fall season too. Bright orange pumpkins and flowers can add just the color pop needed to get potential home buyers looking straight at that front door. Check out some of these photos from the remodeling site Houzz and see how designers added inviting fall curb appeal to their front stoop.

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The Concrete Craze in Home Design

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

So you don’t typically think of concrete as a decor item inside your home but something more reserved for your driveway or a home’s foundation. It can be a cold, harsh surface. So, why are so many designers now using it in the design of interior spaces?

The faux industrial look is very popular at the moment, and concrete sinks, flooring, countertops, or even a concrete accent wall fits right into that style. Polished cement countertops or even concrete soaking tubs are on-trend.

Concrete’s neutral gray can appear less harsh too when used against whites, marbles, or wood.

A perk to concrete is it’s relatively easy to maintain, durable, and eco-friendly. It can retain heat and help keep moisture out—a reason we’re seeing it surface in more bathrooms lately.

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Hot Home Trend: Color Block Your Kitchen Cabinets

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

Getting a little mismatchy in kitchen cabinet color designs is no longer being viewed as an unfinished reno job, but instead perfectly stylish in fitting with today’s trends. These “tuxedo kitchens,” as they’re nicknamed, are where the upper cabinets may be in one color—like in all white—and then the lower cabinets are in a contrasting shade, like a gray or dark walnut. It’s essentially a way to color block your cabinets.

The idea of going with two different shades on your kitchen cabinets may make some homeowners’ a little uneasy, but it’s nothing to fear nowadays and can actually make your kitchen look more open.

Typically, with tuxedo cabinets, the lighter color is on top and a darker color is on the bottom. It can help make a kitchen seem taller when the lighter color is above. It can also create a focal point, when a contrasting color is used on a kitchen island. And the differing shades can also break up the monotony of all one color cabinets, particularly in all-white kitchens.

Some real estate studies are suggesting that white cabinets contrasted by a dark navy blue or black kitchen island is among the most common tuxedo kitchen pairings in some real estate listings too.

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Find Out the New, Hot Home Color for 2019

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR(R) Magazine

Photo credit: Behr

The paint company Behr has named a rich, bluish hue its 2019 Color of the Year. Blueprint is a mid-tone blue that is described as warmer than denim but softer than navy.

Behr is predicting that embracing a full range of blue, teal,and gray will be a key style for home design in 2019. “Layer light and dark blues on walls, cabinets, furniture, and decor for impactful results,” Behr says.

The color matches with the jewel tone trend that has been taking off in 2018, which also has seen the popularity of dark greens and purples in decor.

Blueprint is a dark color but can also be a classic that can be mixed with many color combos and in different home styles too, the company notes. The color can work as an accent wall color, on kitchen cabinets, in home accessories, bedding or blankets, or furnishings.

Gray will remain a hot neutral in 2019, but color forecasters believe that as warmer tones in taupe and terra-cotta rise in popularity, earthy blues and brown combinations will grow too.

Also, Behr predicts that powder blue, blush peach, and tinted lilac will emerge as new neutrals in the new year as well. These colors  create “relaxed and expansive spaces,” the company says. “Matte finishes emphasize softness, while metal accents add glamour.”

Photo credit: Behr

Photo credit: Behr

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