What’s the Buzz Behind the Lagom Home Style?

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine 

Just when everyone was getting their hygge on—a new staging style has taken hold. Instead of it being all about cozying up your home décor, now it’s all about stripping it down and being minimal.

The Scandinavian concept of lagom began taking hold last year and is catching on more in 2018. Case in point, Pinners on Pinterest are searching for “lagom” decorating ideas 905 percent more this year than they were in 2017, according to the 2018 Pinterest Home Report.

Lagom is usually described as “not too much, not too little, just right.” For home staging, lagom fits right in. It’s all about decluttering a space. You decorate with only the essentials.

The Danish concept of hygge—all the rage in recent years—was all about taking your décor to the cozy side. Think lush blankets and fireside interiors.

With lagom, focus on functional furnishing pieces—like those that double up as storage–and that have a minimalistic look. Only a few colors are typically used in the home, such as complementary neutrals (e.g. white, grey, and beige). Pair down accessories from bookshelves and tabletops. Create just one focal point per room, such as a wall art piece or a statement sofa or modern rug. And, add in some indoor plants as a nod to nature and sustainability, which also goes along with the lagom mindset.

Such principles like these from lagom are certainly starting to sound a lot like some of the guidebooks on good home staging!


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The Iwaniw Team
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@Avalar Atlantic Properties
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Hot Home Trend: Stylish Cowhide

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

From rustic to modern to even the most luxurious interiors, homeowners are sprucing up their spaces with cowhide. Cowhide rugs have seen one of the biggest jumps in Google searches on home design trends over the last decade, according to Digital Third Coast’s latest design trends study, based on search engine results.

There are many types of cowhide to choose from, such as solid colored, cuvy shaped ones to black and white cowhide to ones with brown accents. The brown accent cowhides can be more subtle when used up against hardwoods or brown leather furnishings. The black and white cowhides, meanwhile, are for the wishing to make a bigger statement.

Where should you add a cowhide? Here are a few ideas to show how the trend is being used in home design.

FURNISHINGS: A cowhide accent chair or ottoman can create a focal point in a space.

RUGS: A curvy cowhide rug under a coffee table in the living room can help anchor a space. Designers say the cowhide even helps “loosen up” an otherwise perfectly symmetrical balanced space.

ACCESSORIES: Cowhide accessories can also make an impact, such as cowhide patterned throw pillows or cowhide print blanket to dress up a brown or black sofa.

One thing to add with this trend: Don’t overdo it. You don’t need a lot of cowhide to make a statement.

 


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Hot Home Trend: Vertical Gardens

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

Want to add some greenery or a garden to a backyard but tight on space? Try a vertical garden. By going up with your plants instead of spreading them out, you’ll be able to squeeze a garden in even the smallest of spots.

Vertical gardens are considered a hot landscaping trend. Use trellises, planting walls, and other structures to attach plants too. The vertical gardens can also double as a way to add privacy to a small deck or patio.

Create a vertical wall of planters, such as by using mason jars of ornamental grasses. Or, plant a variety of vegetables or flowers. Attach multiple containers to a frame or wall and then fill them up with plants.

But a vertical garden still requires a lot of upkeep. Be sure to prune plants appropriately. Also, you’ll want to make sure the upper levels of the plants don’t overshadow the lower areas and the garden stays vibrant and green.

Read tips on getting started with a vertical garden from the National Association of Landscape Professionals.

Photo Credit: Photos by Linda Oyama Bryan for Mariani Landscape, Lake Bluff, Ill., a member of the National Association of Landscape Professionals

Photo courtesy: Dennis Hammett, Ebby Halliday REALTORS(R)


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Which Remodeling Personality Type Are You?

What’s your home improvement persona: The Sensible Improver, the Project Planner, the Reliable Renovator, the Visionary, or the Extrovert? View this infographic from the Home Projects Council to learn the five main home remodeling personality types.


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Show Us Your Best Staging Photos!

Calling all stagers! Realtor Magazine is on the lookout for great examples of staging a space in some of today’s most popular home styles, from farmhouse chic to modern or contemporary. I’m looking for some real estate professionals and stagers who would be willing to show off some of their favorite staging styles.

If you have a great example of a home staged in one of the styles listed below, please contact Melissa Dittmann Tracey at mtracey@realtors.org. Share with us a room photo and some of the staging accessories you used to enhance the look. We’ll be sharing some of our favorite submissions in an upcoming guide at Realtor Magazine online.

Design Styles for Staging Photos

  • Modern
  • Farmhouse chic
  • Rustic
  • Beach house
  • Industrial
  • Traditional


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Hot Home Trend: Double-Pocket Doors That Make a Statement

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR(R) Magazine

Pocket doors are not only getting a chic makeover in recent years, but they really can be key to solving some design challenges in small spaces too. And for the “wow” factor, try a double-pocket door.

Pocket doors are those that slide right into the wall when opened. It’s like they were never there. You don’t have to account for a door swing like a normal door, which is a bonus in areas tight on space.

Pocket doors are hardly new. They’ve been around for ages. But they did once suffer from an image of looking flimsy and cheap.

That’s not today’s pocket door. The double-pocket pocket door has doors that slide open from either side, tucking into their corresponding wall.

There are many styles to choose from. For example, an all-white French door one with glass window panes allow more brightness and can dress up the doorway even when you want to close off a space.  Or, there also are some double-pocket doors that can stretch all the way to the ceiling for some added drama.

Pocket doors can be a great solution to section off closets, bathrooms, laundry rooms, or a home’s study. They also can add more privacy to a home with an expansive open floorplan. After all, the one growing gripe from homeowners with open floorplans is that their floorplans at time feel too open. The double-pocket door just may be one stylish solution to help solve that problem. And when the doors are tucked into the wall, you may never even known it was there.


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Light it Up: Add a Party Vibe to Your Outdoor Staging

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

Outdoor lighting isn’t just for the holidays. You can illuminate your outdoor living areas anytime of year. Stringed bulbs are becoming a “hot” outdoor trend this year. These outdoor clear, vintage lights have big rounded bulbs that can really create a festive flair in a backyard. They’re reminiscent of the lights used at an outdoor street fair.

Homeowners are draping them across the top of their pergola, or along their back deck. Some owners may stretch them above and across their yard to create a canopy of lights.

Watch out that they don’t become an eyesore during the daytime. The glow at night are when these lights shine. Tuck them into the top of a pergola. Or, for a photo op, drape them temporarily across a courtyard. Take a picture of it at dusk for a listing photo that shows off the entertainment space of a backyard.

Or, string the lights to illuminate the backyard during a twilight open house. Check out how these designers used them.


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The Iwaniw Team
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How Long Do Common Household Items Last?

How Long Do Household Items Last


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Hot Home Trend: Bring on the Velvet

Photo Credit: Pulte Homes

Photo Credit: Pulte Homes

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

We’re seeing a revival of the 1960s love for velvet in home décor. Velvet has been making its way into more fashion and now it’s expected to make a bigger splash in home décor in 2018.

This heavier fabric can add some luster to a space through upholstery, drapery, bedding, pillows, and furnishings too.

But as in all things, moderation is key. You don’t want to make it look like your home was set for a period drama.

Touches of velvet are on-trend. Many of the hottest trends this year are combining soft and warm elements with harder or darker finishes. So in this case, a mix of velvet – like a velvet accent chair — with then a shiny, metal accent, such as a metallic end table. Designers say together the heaviness versus softness blend offers luxury and sophistication to a room’s look.

The homebuilder Pulte Homes has called velvet one of the hottest home trends of 2018, and they’ve been incorporating it more in the design of their model homes across the country. They’re using touches of velvet, particularly when showing off some industrial glam to some of their properties.

Velvet Accents_new

Photo credit: Pulte Homes


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Does the Color Purple Have a Place in Staging?

Pantone_purpleBy Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

Pantone selected Ultra Violet as its 2018 Color of the Year. The vibrant color is popping up in more fashion, but when it comes to home design, is it just too bold for staging? After all, no one wants to deal with a purple elephant in the room when trying to stage a home for sale.

But designers are showing tasteful ways to weave in shades of purple to brighten otherwise neutral decorated rooms. Purple up against a mostly all-beige or all-white room can be just the colorful statement to welcome in the spring buying season.

Purple painted rooms still may be a harder sell in a home for sale, but purple hues in pillows, throw blankets, accessories, florals, or even accent chairs or a tufted couch may just be the touch of purple that takes a room from blah to memorable.

Below we feature a few examples from the popular remodeling site Houzz that show how purple accents can be used in a chic way to brighten up a space. What do you think? Will purple be a hot accent for your spring-time staging?

Purple Velvet

Purple velvety accent chairs against an otherwise neutral backdrop helps make this room more eye-catching.

 

Purple Pattern

The lime green patterned bedding helps to offset the purple statements in this bedroom design.

 

Purple Accents

All shades of purple help spice up the décor in this living room, from the flowers to the ottomans, pillows, and blanket.

 

Purple Accent Walls

If you do purple on the walls, you may want to make it in just a small spot–careful not to overpower the room. Check out this example below, in which the designers use purple wallpaper to accent a fireplace nook in the dining room. The purple hue is then repeated in the lighting fixture and curtains.


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The Iwaniw Team
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@Avalar Atlantic Properties
Direct: 856-318-9098
Cell: 856-404-5635
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