MUST-SEE Spring Home Decorating Trends | Shop the Look Under $100

Spring is here according to the calendar, however, while writing this I’m watching the snow melt with a chill in my body. Even though mother nature may be up to her old tricks, I’m looking forward to swapping out our winter decor for some refreshing spring-like home accessories. Come shop the look to stay on trend in your home.

 

This is the season to clear out, clean up and embrace the lighter side of home decorating. Just like shopping for a few spring wardrobe must-haves your home can use a mini-makeover after being stuck inside all winter staring at the same four walls. I always find it intriguing by just changing up a few pieces or moving items around the room it can completely change the look. So, what should you be on the lookout for this spring? Check out these five home decor trends:

Make a Splash

Watercolor brush strokes continue to be a popular trend to play with home decor. The water downed colors provide a soothing, calmness to your decor that embraces the warmer seasons. Watercolor designs have moved past just being framed as wall art and can now be found on all different types of home decor items these days including throw pillows, rugs, clocks, shower curtains, bedding, blankets, dinnerware and practically anything else that you can imagine! Here are a few of my favorite watercolor home decor items that show a variation of different brush strokes, techniques and items to purchase.

[NOTE: While you can try to DIY these trends click on the images below to shop the look, ALL ITEMS ON THIS PAGE ARE UNDER $100.] 

Spring Home Decor: Watercolor Inspiration

 

Pastels with a Punch

A common staple for spring home decor are pastel colors, but don’t think baby room! Pastel hues have a whole new look when paired with bold colors and neon accents. So, try mixing a pastel in the same hue with a different tone than the main color of your room, or choose a soft contrasting pastel to your color palette to make a statement in any space.

Flower Power

Spring home decorating wouldn’t be complete without highlighting it’s beautiful blooms. There are many ways to celebrate the flower in home design from bold wallpaper to 3-D wall art, so even if you’re not a fan of flower patterns you can still adopt this trend into your space. The possibilities are endless when it comes to flower patterns so choose a size and color scheme that suits you. This trend blends design styles, creating a pleasant atmosphere that allows you to embrace mother nature.
Spring Home Decor: Flower Power

 

Marble Mix

Have you noticed white marble is trending? All you have to do is look online or at your local home decor store to see this classic being revived. Marble is an expensive material, but manufactures are substituting this luxe decor style with a ceramic lookalike to keep it cheap and chic. Find this trend on flower post, kitchen essentials, pillows, sculptures, even lighting. It’s everywhere, usually paired with an organic wood or gold metal. Don’t go crazy though with this trend!  Avoid having a cold, sterile room by mixing a few organic home decor elements to soften the look.

Spring Home Decor: A Marble Mix

 

Copper Tone

Metallics are still very popular, but copper will be the metal of choice for 2017 because unlike it’s counterparts silver or gold, copper gives an industrial chic warmth to any interior. You can go as bold or as subtle as you wish, integrating this warm metal into your home decor style to create a uniquely inviting look.

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Photo by: www.homebnc.com

We recently did some shopping at Homegoods and Pier1 Imports to pick up a few spring/Easter accessories, watch our Facebook Live below to check out what we found! Also, don’t forget to like our fan page to get notified next time we’re live.

Let me know in the comment section below which one of these trends you’ll try in your home this spring! We’d love to see photos too — so feel free to post those underneath the Facebook live video above. 

Happy Decorating,

[VIDEO] 4 Mistakes You’re Making When Organizing a Home

If you’re like most people, you’ve had good intentions to organize your home this year — but, is your technique on achieving this goal really working? If your closets are still a mess, cupboards & drawers overflowing and surfaces cluttered then you may be making one or more of these home organizing mistakes.

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To help you conquer your home organizing goals, let’s explore a few reasons why you’re home is still cluttered and how you can take action this weekend to improve your home’s quality of life.

MISTAKE # 1: Being Unrealistic About Your Possessions

Parting with your items for some may be difficult. Many feel that they will need the item at some point, so they keep it — and in most cases misplace the item never truly using it again. This hoarding mentality builds up clutter quickly. Rather than feeling guilty or obligated to keep an item because of your mindset ask yourself:

  • Does this item support my current goals and lifestyle?
  • Will the item promote the vision you have for your home?
  • Is the item meaningful or functional to complete daily tasks?

MISTAKE # 2: Edit First Before Organizing

Many times people think they’re organizing, but simply storing clutter in a box and labeling it, does NOT mean it’s actually organized. Organized clutter is still clutter and can make anyone frustrated and give up. Take one room, one closet, one shelf and go through each item weed out outdated, broken and unused items by using the pile system. Not sure where to start? Answer these questions:

  • Have you used the item in the past year?
  • If, it’s broken is it worth being fixed?
  • Does this item serve a purpose in your life?
  • Is it difficult or expensive to find again?
  • Do you love it?
  • Can you use or reuse this item in the future?

Watch our latest home organizing series below (4 Videos Included). 

MISTAKE # 3: Not Creating a Home 

One reason clutter can grow out of control in a home is because your possessions don’t necessarily have a designated place. It’s important to zone your possessions by grouping like items together by what it is and how you use the item. When every item is assigned a home, it’s easier to return the item back to it’s designated place after use. Everything in your home must have a place that is easily accessible and in a location that coordinates with the room. For example, in a kitchen pantry the shelves should be filled with items you’d need in a kitchen. Maybe one shelf is small appliances, one area for canned goods, another for non-perishables. So inside the pantry there are different sub-categories to organize items. Here are a few questions to ask yourself when determining where to place an item:

  • How often will you use it?
  • Does it belong in this space?
  • Is there enough room?

Keep items that you use often between neck and knee height for easy access and consider labeling the different areas in the space so your entire family knows where each item goes.

MISTAKE # 4: Lack a storage plan

 A huge part of organizing involves finding storage products that will fit the items your looking to store as well as your lifestyle. The problem is people often head to the store without an actual plan or idea of what they may need. First go shopping around your home to see how you can reuse storage containers you may already have lying around or can be better utilized. Then make a list of the items you need, take into consideration the measurements of the space and if you need storage that’s clear or with a lid. 

Remember organizing is an ongoing process, it’s a habit that takes time to adopt and your organizing goals may evolve depending on your current needs. Without a clear vision the process can be stressful. Don’t forget by tackling your clutter the house will always look cleaner. Comment below and tell us what area in your home you want organized.

Happy Organizing,

 

 

How to Create Cozy Rooms to Hibernate in this Winter

As the holiday decorations are put away and temperatures continue to drop, it seems almost impossible to avoid those long, chilly days of winter. If you’re stuck indoors this time of year, hibernate in style by creating an intimate and relaxed space to cozy up with loved ones.

It’s time to revamp those dormant areas of your home to take refuge from the frigid weather. Keep warm this season with these simple tips to make your space a cozy place to hide from the cold.

Main-area purge.

There is nothing worse than hanging out in a home that’s cramping its style with clutter. Since, you’ll be spending most of your time indoors don’t overstuff your space with unnecessary items. Purge items no longer needed and spend some time inside organizing the main living areas of the home including the living room, kitchen and master bedroom to surround yourself with items that will inspire and motivate throughout the season. This will not only reduce cabin fever, but provide a clutter-free space (and mind) to truly feel relaxed.

Musical chairs.

Now is the perfect time to switch up a furniture arrangement. Plan on closing the gap between chairs and sofas for a more intimate, cozier setting. Place seating areas away from drafty windows and doors, and instead bring them closer to the interior of the home and heating sources, like a fireplace or an air vent. Swap out a glass or wood coffee table for a fabric ottoman or poofs to soften the scene and provide extra seating.

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Source: bhg.com

Reading nook.

Expand your mind this winter by creating a cozy reading nook that’s impossible to ignore. If you don’t have an existing nook or built-in window seat in your home, add a comfy oversized chair in a quiet corner of the room. Have a few decorative pillows and throws to snuggle up with nearby, along with a small table to hold a warm drink or take notes. This area should also have ample lighting to read during the day or night and an outlet to charge a reading tablet, if needed.

Rugged layers.

Create soft, durable layers on the floor to keep those feet warm this season. Try adding an area rug or runner on hardwood or tile near the bed, in the living room, by the kitchen or bathroom sink to keep toes from coming into contact with cold hard floors. Place a faux fur rug near the fireplace to promote cuddling near the fire. A rug can also play up color or pattern in a room, so let it take center stage and keep other decor in the room simple, or use the rug to introduce new textures, patterns and colors into a space to completely change the look.

Mood lighting.

Winter days get dark quickly, so don’t forget to add more lighting to a room that doesn’t get much natural light. Add a few more table or floor lamps in dark corners, turn on the fireplace, light candles (real or fake) and add string lights to your decor to set the scene with just enough light to sit back and relax in a warm atmosphere.

Inspiring art.

Artwork is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to add personality to a room. Pick something that’s inspirational to keep you motivated during this dreary time of year. Use warm colors like gold or oranges to counter Mother Nature’s current cool vibe. Add a few sayings for an eclectic collection on a gallery wall or opt for a large piece of art that lures you into the space. Consider a neutral image that reflects the time of the year where you are, or where you’d like to be.

Source: sarahcaindesign.blogspot.com

Sweater trend.

Sweaters are not just made for wearing as a fashion statement. Sweater textures such as cable knit, cashmere, velvet, faux fur and wool will keep you feeling cozy all winter long, while adding dimension to the home decor. Fabrics like this displayed in a room will enhance the sense of touch to make those inside want to cuddle up.

Hot drink station.

Whether shoveling, playing or just trying to get around in the snow all day, it’s refreshing to warm up the chill in your body with a favorite hot beverage. Create a hot drink station near the kitchen or dining room stocked with hot chocolate, tea, coffee, espresso and some cordials to welcome those coming in from outside. Place decorative mugs near the coffee machine, along with other supplies like marshmallows, cinnamon sticks, honey, sugar and milk.

Happy Hibernating,

5 Items to Organize Now to Handle Clutter When Selling (or Not!)

As the new year rings in, now is a great time to purge, especially if you plan on selling a home this year. A budget-friendly way to prepare a home for sale is to organize it, a difficult task for some homeowners — but, it can be rewarding once the project is complete.

Every home has clutter, a collection of things lying around in an untidy pile, but it’s important to get a handle on your mess to not only gain more square footage, but to show off the home’s positive features. Not to mention be organized helps buyers visualize living in your home.

Clutter comes in all different forms and it lingers in most homes, so what are the top five items to keep organized while on the market? Get ready to roll up those sleeves and get to work:

Mail & Paperwork.

This is a constant cycle that can get overwhelming if neglected. Paper enters your home daily by mail, newspapers or magazines, school papers, maybe even office work. Create a system to contain each item. For instance, deal with the mail as soon as you bring it in. Throw out junk mail and have a bin for current bills and filing system for other important information. 

Toys.

If you have kids, you have toys and lots of them! When selling your home have a designated area for the toys and only keep the ones out that they play with the others pack up or get rid of. Have a designated area that’s out in the open get creative with storage solutions and use decorative baskets, boxes or even a trunk.

 

Clothes & Shoes.

These items are used daily so can easily get misplaced from their home the closet. Get in the habit of taking coats off and hanging them in the closet, rather throw on a chair back or floor. Corral shoes, have a system in place for dirty clothes and put clean clothes away immediately to avoid having a pile of clothes. It takes just a few seconds to handle these objects, but many times it’s an afterthought that can easily get out of control.

Collections or Collectibles.

In most cases what you collect in your home may not be something your potential buyer will love. So, why not remove your collections and collectibles to gain more space. I promise as soon as you pack these items up the room will look completely different.

Your Schedule.

It’s also important to organize your time when selling your home. You will need time to prepare and maintain the space before showing, you’ll also need to be organized throughout the transaction so you have time for open houses, showings and have a system in place to reduce the stress of being on the market. So, put it on your calendar now.

We’re going to be hosting an organizing class coming up in Mid-January 2017. Want to be invited? Just enter your details below and finally get on the right path to create an organized life you deserve. Then be on the lookout for all the details…

Happy Organizing,

Ringin’ In the New Year | Planning Your Night for New Year’s Eve

Three, two, one…Happy New Year! With the celebration of the year just a few days away, what are your plans to ring in the new year? The countdown is on and if you’re feeling the pressure to have the best night ever consider these simple solutions to start the new year off right.

The period leading up to New Year’s Day is a time for setting things straight: a thorough housecleaning, paying off debts, returning borrowed objects, reflecting on one’s shortcomings, mending quarrels. In many cultures, people jump in water-literally washing the slate clean or the kiss the one they love to insure the relationship flourishes in the new year. According to British folklore, you should not take anything out of the house on New Year’s Day–not even trash. As this poem suggests:

Take out, then take in
Bad luck will begin
Take in, then take out
Good luck comes about

Some believe everything that you do on New Year’s Eve and day is significant for your future, now if that’s the case let’s make it count! Here are a few ideas of things to do on New Year’s Eve.

Party On

Let’s start with a big bash! Wherever you live attending the annual New Year’s Eve party practically guarantees you a night of fun, however many times these parties get booked up quickly. While this might sound like something you’d like to avoid, grabbing some friends and enjoying a stress-free night out together takes the pressure off of hosting an event or trying to figure out what exactly to do.

We’ve done the club scene, parties on the roof top in NYC, and banquet halls on Long Island, but Sal and I often go back to the party at Russo’s on the Bay in Howard Beach, it’s an amazing local catering hall that doesn’t skimp out on food or liquor and even sends you home with a few goodies from their full venetian menu with breakfast. They also put on a themed show and pump up the music to break out your dance moves.

Throw a Party

Despite our home being small, we’ve also thrown a few New Year’s parties over the years. As the hostess you can make this event as small or as big as you’d like! Throwing a last minute party with a few close friends and family members, not only gives those who had no concrete plans something to do (so you look like the hero) but, they tend to be the best events because there’s no hype. Try a themed party like a decades bash, winter wonderland, black and white ball or a masquerade party. If you’re doing a theme make sure you have decor that matches, as well as food and why not have your guests dress the party too! Whether you’ve had your party planned for months or just a few days here are some helpful tips from Tiny Prints, that features 75 New Year’s Eve party ideas to help you plan your celebration, including decor, desserts, cocktails and more.

Reflect

Maybe 2016 was a tough year for you and partying just isn’t your thing. Take the evening to do YOU! There is no better way to kick-ass in 2017 than to reflect and come up with a plan. Take some time to pamper yourself — draw a bubble bath, get a massage or facial. Pop a bottle and do a brain dump of everything you’d like to accomplish in life, no matter how crazy it may seem, just write it down. Then focus on a few goals you’d like to take on immediately. My go to book that instantly helps with this process is Rituals for Living Dreambook & Planner this will help keep you on track all year long!

Jump Start Your Health Kick

Many areas throw a local exercise event for those who are sick of the party scene. New York Road Runners have a midnight run on New Year’s Eve. The four-mile run will begin on the stroke of midnight, as will a spectacular fireworks display lights up the night and the start of 2017. If running isn’t your thang, then see you can take a late night yoga class at your local gym or other event happening in your area to kick start healthier living.

new years ideas
Photo by: runningusa.org

Test Your Skills

Ok, another idea to start the new year off right is to sign up for a class! Yes, learning something new on New Year’s Eve can put you in good spirits and is a night you won’t soon forget. Again, check your local events calendar to see what’s available, but the in Baltimore Chef Shop hosts a couple’s cook New Year’s Eve dinner, so schedule a cooking class or paint night to brush up on the skills you want to embrace in the new year.

Couples Retreat

Simplify your New Year’s Eve by staying in with your significant other or your BFF and watch movies, crack open a bottle or two or three, plan an amazing dinner complete with dessert and watch the ball drop on TV. Keep it interesting by playing a few games (sexy or not) or even challenge your brains and chat it up while doing a puzzle. This can be as romantic as you want, but the important thing is to spend quality time together! 

Take a Trip

Imagine waking up with a few friends, somewhere secluded, after having spent the night eating and drinking your way into oblivion? Whether you plan a road trip or somewhere across border lines, this a great way to celebrate the new year with people you love! We’ve taken several ski trips during this time of year and it’s a fantastic combination of partying, playing and getting some activities in. Try planning your trip on Homeaway.com to save money!

Happy New Year,

Holiday Gift Guide for the Home

The holidays are just a few days away, so for all you last-minute shoppers here are some gifts for the home. When in doubt as to what to give a friend or family member, a present for the home is always a good option.

holiday gift guide for home

There are so many options for home gifts, so you’ll be able to find something unique and impressive for even the pickiest person on your list.

 

Home Gift Guide

 

 

For the person who always open their doors to hosting dinner or cocktail parties, there are plenty of accessories or helpful finds for the hostess with the mostest. Have someone always on the run? Give the gift of a cozy blanket, pillow or a luxurious candle that makes the place look comfy and cozy to help them unwind after a hard day. Maybe you have a cook on your list, give them a kitchen gadget, or chalkboard to list their daily menu. Not sure what color or styles to get, always go with something neutral or mixed metal those items usually go with any style and instantly create luxe living. This selection goes beyond the ordinary to offer both functionality and delight — with a little extra joy for the upcoming year.

Happy Holiday,

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Learn By Example, Get the Lifestyle & Home You Want

If you’re like me, you may be spending some time this last part of the year reviewing home projects, weekly tasks and the habits you’d like to change in the upcoming year to create a space that not only feels at home, but can be show-ready at a moments notice.

cyber monday sale

I believe that we all have a style that each and everyone of us can embrace inspiration from our senses, knowledge and desires we’ve experienced. That what we’ve learned in our lifetime, our struggles, challenges and triumphs actually affects the lifestyle we lead and how our homes are showcased. So, it’s my job as a home stager and lifestyle expert to create a home buyers or anyone for that matter will find irresistible.

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Irresistible meaning, to allow someone to fall in love with their surroundings and tempting them to possess a lifestyle they’ve only dreamed about by keeping track of the life they lead at home. For the past six years I’ve been decorating, tell stories through images and create warm, inviting spaces. The surreal October morning in 2012 when Superstorm Sandy uprooted our life, our lifestyle for nearly six months changed my life forever. I knew I wanted to stay in our home build better, stronger and smarter. But where do you start when your life has been turned upside down in a matter of minutes?

You start with a goal…despite the stress…just one goal, one thing to focus on until it’s complete, then write out everything needed to complete the goal that will eventually change your habits, your lifestyle for good. I began to follow a process, the feel at home process, which has helped hundreds of homeowners reach their goals whether it’s selling, buying or dwelling that you can find in our best-selling book Feel at Home: Home Staging Secrets for a Quick & Easy Sell.

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This process has allowed home sellers to spend 78-percent less time on the market and has a combined increase in sales of 9 hundred 80 thousand dollars after staging their homes with my NYC based home staging company Stylish Stagers, Inc. The feel at home process has inspired me to create the world’s first online home staging video course, The Stage 2 Sell Strategy, for home sellers to easily apply home staging secrets, even lifestyle secrets into their own space.

It’s time to help bridge the gap between your dream home and what’s reality. Coming home to a dark, dirty, cluttered, unstyled and cold space isn’t healthy or inspiring for you to lead the life you desire.

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Why is it only fair when guests come by to keep a well-maintained home? Some homeowners don’t even upkeep their home for guests, let alone for themselves or their family? I believe everyone should value their home, showcase their pride…guests or not…and love ending the day in their very own private space.

My job is to help you fall in love with your home, find your style and create a sancutary that you never imagined possible. I believe that we all have a style, a lifestyle, we aspire to — let’s find yours together with a one on one online consultation.

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So, today I wanted to share with you these four great products in our shop that you won’t want to miss. Here is our exclusive promo code: BLACKFRIDAY so if you like anything you see, use that code to get 50% off before our Annual Holiday Sale ends tonight (Cyber Monday)! If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me.

Happy Shopping,

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Lessons of a Superstorm: 4 Years Later

The night of October 29, 2012 changed our small beachfront community forever. Wind-driven storm surge from superstorm Sandy flooded the entire neighborhood leaving anything under five feet high submerged in the murky water. Recovery in Hamilton Beach, has been slow and steady, but we’re seeing our community skyline progress.
superstorm sandy

As we walk through the neighborhood construction from superstorm Sandy continues. Homes are being knocked down, rebuilt and elevated to withstand future flooding thanks to the NYC Build It Back Program. It’s been a grueling process dealing with the program’s setbacks, but hope has been rekindled to neighbors here who have been in living in limbo, now that their seeing new home’s resurrect. 

After the storm there was only two options: put a band-aid on your home and wait for the government to step in or flip the bill yourself, do the work and pray for a reimbursement. Being an impatient person, we went on our own.

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The Impossible Can Happen

If you think a natural disaster can’t happen to you, think again. Up until the very last seconds before the water started seeping into our home through the baseboards, I thought water couldn’t possible enter our home. In fact, when our neighbor came to warn us to close our front door in ankle-high water I still thought sand bags piled in front of our home and a bath towel in between the storm door and front door would stop the water. (Needless to say it didn’t.) Yes, we were warned by officials using a mega phone up and down our block to evacuate, but we live on the highest block in our area and most of us didn’t believe it would be that bad– comparing it to past storms. Well, we were wrong.

superstorm sandy
Our kitchen after the passing of superstorm Sandy

Being Prepared for the Worst

Before the storm, we stocked up on batteries, food, flash lights and took out the cat carriers just in case we needed to grab them quickly and keep them contained. We had also decided we were going to sleep on the pull out couch downstairs as a precaution if by some chance the two large trees on our property fell on the house. (Thank god they didn’t.) Well, that plan foiled once the water made an appearance in our home. We tried to grab what we could quickly and run upstairs where we were trapped for the night. Despite being prepared most of the items we collected were destroyed in the flood. Our refrigerator knocked over, kitchen cabinets submerged so our food wasn’t good. The batteries and flash lights also destroyed. So, my recommendation is to have these items on both floors of your home during a storm or in a bag near your stairs just in case you have to flee.  

It’s “Just Stuff”

As clean up began, it was a constant reminder of how much stuff was lost. Electronics, furniture, antiques, kitchenware, memorabilia, planners, photos and so much more. You had to constantly remind yourself, “it’s just stuff.” Every door you opened, every drawer you opened, in corners and boxes all around “stuff” wading in water. I think because I was in the home when the event happened, I was more okay with letting go of my superficial belongings because I knew it could’ve been a lot worse our lives were in danger and that you can’t replace. I will admit though trying to save boxes of photos and a trunk full of 10 years worth of 9-11 newspapers and memorabilia to build a scrapbook were some of the hardest moments.  

Plans Matter

Since we took on rebuilding ourselves we needed a plan. Luckily, our financial plan was able to give us enough money to start the demolition and construction while waiting for insurance and FEMA to kick-in. Within 24 hours of the storm’s passing we were on the phone setting up professionals and gutting the first floor of our home.   Part of our plan was to use our strengths. So, my husband got work on staying in contact with contractors, insurance and organizations to get us funding and I was responsible for putting our home back together. I knew I wanted to use every square inch of our small space and make it as functional as possible, you can check out some of the remodeling we did in this video below.

When Hardship Hits, Community Matters

My neighbors are a bunch of good-natured, tightly knit folks, and when bad things happen, we collectively come together and make sure everybody has whatever they need. It is hard to overstate just how good a feeling it is to know that when things get tough, there are people you know, or a group to which you belong, that will help look out for you. It’s comforting to know you’re not alone, that you’re going through the same thing everybody else is on your block, in your community and around the region.

Happy Rebuilding,

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Laundry Room Design Ideas to Spin For

The laundry room is a thankless space in a house that many take for granted, but if a machine breaks or worst yet doesn’t exist believe me you’ll surely notice just how functional and convenient a laundry room can be. So, how do you make room in your home for a luxury like this tight on square footage?

laundry room

It’s important to first consider a home’s layout and a family’s laundry habits to determine how much room is actually needed. In our home, there is only laundry for two and most of our clothes are dry clean only, but nonetheless, it was important to have a washer and dryer to easily complete this chore– especially, since we don’t have much room to pile our clothes up for the week and take it to the laundromat. 

If you’re like me competing with a small space, I recommend repurposing a closet or an area in a room to stack a washer and dryer vertically to save square footage. When we originally bought our house the washer and dryer sat side-by-side in a large closet in the kitchen, but after Superstorm Sandy flooded our home, we remodeled the area to fit a bigger refrigerator, cabinets  and house energy-efficient appliances.

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The laundry room in my home.

 

Now, the cabinets above the fridge holds our laundry soap and other accessories, while we keep our dirty clothes upstairs in a laundry bin that we quickly bring down once it’s full. This is our solution on our home, but I was inspired to create this post after Tara O. shared her laundry project once taking our 30 day home challenge. She has a large room that serves multiple functions including: laundry, pantry and storage.

laundry room

While much of her project involved cleaning, decluttering and organizing the space. I gave her some recommendations on unifying the space:

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A laundry and storage area is considered a secondary room when staging a home and isn’t necessarily top priority when preparing a home for sale, however, with that said if you’re looking to instantly makeover the space improving storage and dressing up essentials will give your laundry room a fresh look. Here are five tips to consider when updating the laundry facilities:

 Use Wall Space

Add versatile storage by placing shelves on the walls, it’s a useful addition to any laundry room. Choose one with a built-in drying rack to solve two common problems in a laundry room, not enough space and no where to dry delicate clothes.

Write On It

Use chalkboard paint on the focal wall or even on the door to keep a schedule, to-do list, inspiration or motivational quotes to keep your spirits up doing this repetitive chore.

Contain Your Stuff

Use a combination of storage solutions to keep items contained. Invest in clear containers to display items like laundry soap, clothes pins and dryer sachets on the shelves. Plus, get bins and baskets to store items not pretty enough to show off make sure to get more than one to repeat the item a few times in the room to make it look cohesive.

Laundry Room Ideas

 

Hidden Storage

Space behind the door is always wasted, so hang clothes, ironing board, broom or other utility items to give you more space to not only move around, but to keep countertop space clear for folding. 

Elevated Baskets

Look for laundry baskets with legs — does it have wheels? Even better. This helps easily cart clothes around the room, saves time not to mention your back  because you won’t have to bend down a lot emptying and  sorting laundry.

Board Order

This multi-functional island provides storage and an ironing board on top, which easily folds down when not in use. This is not only a space saver, but makes ironing easier and more convenient to quickly get out those wrinkles.

Plush Rug

Add a throw rug that’s got some cushion to it! This creates a luxurious environment in a laundry room and allows your feet to take a break while standing up completing this chore.

Keep It Clean 

A cluttered room makes it difficult to do the laundry — it can easily become a time-consuming and frustrating job, which can spin out of control and deter you from actually completing the work. So, while you’ve got a load in the wash wipe down surfaces, restock items and keep the floor and countertop surfaces clear.

Remember make a laundry room functional, inspirational and smelling fresh with a simple scent to keep you coming back to stay on top of the constant laundry cycle. What does your laundry room look like? You can post a picture over on our Facebook Fan Page and leave a comment below sharing with us your laundry routine and how you stay motivated! 

Happy Cleaning,

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Good Neighbor Day: An Ode to My Neighbors

Although I live in the largest city in the world, New York City, you’d be pleasant surprised that the place I call home is a small town neighborhood, where everyone comes together to support one another.


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Neighbors are an integral part of our life – whether you like it or not. Good Neighbor Day celebrated on September 28 is an annual holiday that promotes neighborliness and niceness towards people who surround us. Who is surrounding you? I have a cast of characters on my block who always have our backs. We’ve been on our block since 2003 and have shared a lot of laughs and cry with those who surround us. If you don’t know your neighbors well, today is your chance to start the conversation and build a relationship. Here are a few tips to be the best neighbor possible:

Come Together 

Get to know who is living in your community by inviting your neighbors over for a barbecue, pizza night or have a block party. Enjoy good food, light spirits and take a dip in the pool or hang by a fire pit to establish friendly relations.

good neighbor day
Next door neighbors enjoying pizza night at our house.

 

good neighbor day
Neighbors taking a dip in the pool this summer.
More neighbors celebrating Sal's birthday.
More neighbors celebrating Sal’s birthday.

Make An Impression

A smile, saying hello or sending a small gift can go a long way in making a positive impression on a new neighbor. Being in a new place with new faces can be overwhelming so welcome them in on behalf of the rest of the neighborhood. Continue to give smiles and waves to show that you are always approachable.

Give a Helping Hand

Establish a relationship by helping out a neighbor. Ask elder neighbors if they need help with their yard or taking out the trash. See if a single mom could use some extra help watching her child while she runs to the grocery store or maybe help out while a neighbor’s on vacation picking up their mail, watering plants or watching their beloved animals. Our neighbors constantly help out in our home from cleaning up to helping out with minor repairs or watching our pets. We love having neighbors we can call upon when in need. Our block rose up in October 2012, when Superstorm Sandy flooded the first floor of our homes.

Our home after Superstorm Sandy hit.
Our home after Superstorm Sandy hit.

 

Down the block checking out damage by water.
Down the block checking out damage by water.

 

Surviving together with no electricity or gas. Makeshift kitchen.
Surviving together with no electricity or gas. Makeshift kitchen.

 

Keep It Clean

Don’t be the slob on the block. Take initiative and keep your curb appeal tidy. Your home not only reflects on you personally but also on the community that surrounds your house. Keep up by ensuring that the front of your home remains attractive to the eye, raising the value of your entire street. Check out these tips to help curb a neighbor’s bad view.

Acknowledge & Celebrate Life Events

As you begin to build a relationship with your neighbors take note of important dates, holidays and life events they celebrate to help them commemorate that special day. Many of our neighbors have been by our side supporting our successes.

Bella supporting me at The Feel At Home book launch party.
Bella supporting me at The Feel At Home book launch party.

Be Aware of Your Surroundings 

Be observant of your neighborhood, from the people to the homes to the common areas. If you see some unfamiliar faces checking out a house or a neighbor who hasn’t picked up their newspaper in awhile be sure to check in and report unusual behavior before situations escalate. This will help keep your your neighborhood safe.

Party Off the Block

Plan to get together off the block to get to know each other. 

Several neighbors enjoying a day of paintball.
Several neighbors enjoying a day of paintball.

 

Making arts and crafts with neighbor.

 

Night on the town with the neighborhood girls.
Night on the town with the neighborhood girls.

 

The benefits of being a good neighbor are endless and actually forces your neighbor to reciprocate –  they’ll be good to you, too. Here are some other ways to bring your community together and enhance neighborhood relations.

How will you celebrate National Good Neighbor Day? Let me know in the comment section below and tell me how you deal with those on your block.

Happy Neighboring,

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