Small Space Solutions for Nashville Musician

One thing I really love to do is to figure out the essence of a client’s style and make it happen for them in their space.  It’s so much fun for me to help create different atmospheres that express who the homeowner is or who they hope to become. So I was happy to help this young Nashville recording artist design a contemporary bachelor pad that reflects his love of music and gives him a place to entertain friends.

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photo by Melanie G. Photography 

 

After conversing with his mother, a reader of The Decorologist in South Carolina, we scheduled a time to meet at the newly-purchased condo in arty Hillsboro Village of Nashville.  I think I’ll save the “before” photos of the 650 square foot space until a bit later.  I just can’t wait to show you around.

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Design by Kristie Barnett, The Decorologist / Photo by Melanie G. Photography

 

The client’s needs included creating a main room that would  be both multi-functional and stylish, where he could lounge, watch television, entertain, dine with friends, study, and work on the computer.  All in the same room!  

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Photo by Melanie G. Photography

 

This called for some flexible space-planning solutions.  During our first meeting, I came up with a floorplan and dimensions of what was needed to meet the needs of the client and the space.  We agreed on this West Elm sofa and pair of Expedit bookcases from IKEA to flank it.  On the opposite side of the room, we needed a table that could do triple-duty.  It needed to provide space for dining, computer work, and for television components and lamps.  This slender model worked great, and also has room beneath for extra seating in the form of these CB2 ottomans.

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Photo by Melanie G. Photography

 

Accessories were easy – the client’s own musical instruments, speakers, and other musician stuff.  It’s all easily accessible and looks really cool, to boot!

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 Melanie G. Photography

 

I loved hanging his collection of iconic albums in a smart grid above the sofa.  It’s the perfect focal point for a musician’s home, don’t you agree?

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 Record Album Art / Photo by Melanie G. Photography 

 

 

I hung my client’s own framed CDs in his bedroom above the printer and one of his many guitars.

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Melanie G. Photography

 

Maybe you should see some “befores” now.  The walls were a dreary pinky-beige throughout, and the ceilings were popcorn-textured.  And of course, the dreaded ceiling fan – ugh.

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Living Room Before

 

We had the popcorn removed and wrapped the choices of paint colors on the wall and ceiling to make the small space feel larger.  The color in this room is Benjamin Moore’s Revere Pewter.  Following the transformation, complete with new lighting from Lowes and a new rug from West Elm:

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Design by Kristie Barnett / Photo by Melanie G. Photography

 

 

This was the previous condition of the bedroom:

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Bedroom Before

 

We made the bed the focal point, and lightened and brightened the whole room with a light gray-blue for walls and ceilings.  His mother didn’t think he’d like the color I chose, but he loved it!  Never met a man who didn’t like Benjamin Moore’s Gray Wisp.

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 Bedroom Design by The Decorologist / Photo by Melanie G. Photography

 

Just a quick “before” of the bathroom:

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 Bathroom Before

 

New paint, lighting, hardware, a framed mirror, and a base cabinet painted Benjamin Moore’s Kendall Charcoal made for a modern, masculine update.

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 Bathroom After / Melanie G. Photography

 

The kitchen is super-small and the short cabinets didn’t help the storage situation.  But new cabinetry wasn’t in the budget.

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 Kitchen Before

 

Fresh paint, white subway tile, new appliances, a granite-look laminate countertop, and new hardware  took this basic kitchenette from sad to happy.  Notice that we added crown moulding to the cabinets to make them look higher-end. 

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Kitchen After / Melanie G. Photography 

 

We furnished this entire condo with great bargains from retailers like Lowe’s, West Elm, IKEA, CB2, and Target. Good style doesn’t have to be expensive, nor does it have to be the least bit feminine.  This dude’s gotta save his money for guitars and amps and such.

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Photo by Melanie G. Photography

 

 

And for wooing the ladies who visit his cool condo, of course.

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Recording Artist Sheldon Clark in his Nashville condo / Photo by Melanie G. Photography

 

What do you think of this contemporary style make-over?  If you need help finding your own unique decorating style, contact The Decorologist for a design intervention!

 

How Paint & a Fresh Perspective Can Re-Energize Your Tired Space

I’m really excited to share this makeover with you today!  The homeowner is a prolific artist who has lots of beautiful paintings and amazing antiques gathered from many of the different countries she and her husband have lived in over the last 40+ years.

DSC 8951 How Paint & a Fresh Perspective Can Re Energize Your Tired Space

 

However, she had grown tired of the look of her living room/dining room combination and needed a fresh perspective. The walls were a goldy-yellow color and the accent colors were primarily red and off-white.  Here’s the way the space looked when I arrived for the consultation.

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 Before

 

The sectional seemed awkward in the space, and the homeowner was ready to let it go for something new.  During the consultation, we decided on that new paint and a new sofa were the most important changes to be made.  Because she had so many interesting and history-laden pieces, I wanted to use most of what she already had so that the room would still feel familiar, only better.  I must tell you, she wasn’t sold on the paint scheme right away.  In fact, she contacted me a couple of weeks later concerned that it wouldn’t work with what she had and might read too cold and gray.  Fortunately, she bit the bullet and went with my recommendations afterall.

Ok, here’s the conversation area before the makeover.  Notice the bookcase on the left – I’m going to repurpose that, as you will see.

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Living Room Before

 

We didn’t want a completely neutral wall color and wanted to keep things light,  so I chose a gray-green for the walls and a darker greeny-blue on the ceiling.  I knew this backdrop would make the wood tones richer and the off-whites and red punch out. 

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Living Room After

 

The new sofa is a better size for the space.   One of the basic tenets of my design is symmetry. The homeowner has several matching bookcase/shelf units, previously used side-by-side in this room.  I pulled out a few shelves and used them to bookend the sofa and hold these fabulous vintage brass lamps.   I then pulled the pair of end tables to take the place of the predictable rectangular coffee table, and I LOVE the way it looks!

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Living Room by The Decorologist

 

Let’s check out the “before” again from the other side of the room.

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Living Room/Dining Room Before

 

The finished room looks pulled-together, sophisticated, and inviting.  I think the new colors really help the beautiful wood sing.  See if you agree:

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Living Room/Dining Room After

 

The one thing that still needs to change is the light fixture – it does nothing for this room!  This is what I am suggesting to replace it:

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 Ballard Designs via Pinterest

 

 

The Asian art was begging to be grouped rather than be scattered on the wall.

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Before

 

I guess it’s the symmetry-junkie in me.  I just had to line them up – I think they make a bolder statement when grouped tightly together.

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Here’s the best part:  my client and her husband both love the results!  And I love how my client’s art stands out against the new wall color.

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There is NOTHING I love more than giving new life to tired interiors.   Sometimes it just takes some paint and a fresh perspective on how to put it all together!

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How Spending $360 Can Get Your Home Sold Fast

Last week, I gave you a sneak peek at a home  I staged to sell.  Unlike decorating, staging a home requires de-personalization and neutralizing the space so that potential buyers can visualize themselves moving right in.  The homeowners were animal lovers and expressed that love through the decoration of their home.

8100moose statue How Spending $360 Can Get Your Home Sold Fast

 

I always encourage my design clients to express their passions in the way they decorate their home, but I encourage my staging clients to do the opposite when marketing their home to the public!  When staging a property, it’s not about you anymore – it’s about the buyer.   These homeowners were using their dining room as a den, which can confuse buyers who are searching for the purpose of each room of the house.

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 Dining Room (?) Before

 

By moving existing furniture from the breakfast room into the dining room, we created a new dining room that buyers can visualize themselves entertaining in.

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 Staged Dining Room by The Decorologist

 

The kitchen was quite busy in its “before” state.  This was the only room I recommended changing the paint color.

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 Kitchen Before

 

By stealing the table and chairs from this room, we made the whole area feel much larger.  In this case, it was more important to stage the dining room than it was to stage the breakfast area.  The lighter paint color further expanded the space.  The painting was done the afternoon after we staged, and only required a couple gallons of paint.

kitchen How Spending $360 Can Get Your Home Sold Fast

Photo by Melissa Allen of Brentwood Area Homes, staged by The Decorologist

 

The living room was more of a playroom for the homeowners’ pets than it was a place to entertain humans.  It’s obviously large, but didn’t look inviting.

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 Living Room Before

 

Isn’t this so much more welcoming?  I think the doggie likes it, too!  Or maybe he’s just trying to figure out where I hid the dog toys!

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 Staging by The Decorologist

 

Since we’re on the subject,  not everyone loves pets – many buyers (or someone in their family) may be allergic to cats and/or dogs.  The more pet-centered a home appears, the more red flags will go up for potential buyers.   I recommend paring down pet stuff to the bare minimum and removing pets from the home prior to showings.  Here’s another view of the living room before the staging.  The clutter and animal art was boxed up for the homeowners to use in their next home.

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 Before Staging

 

If your home is well-staged, the buyers no longer focus on the personality of the present owners or the details of their life.  They instead are drawn to the architectural features of the property and the potential of making it their own.

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 Staging by The Decorologist

 

Here is the “before” of the master bedroom.  I was (and buyers would be) distracted by the stuffed animals and the busy bedcovering.

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 Bedroom Before

 

Fresh bedding and a little decluttering turned the bedroom into a sophisticated get-away for the grown-ups of the home.

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 Staging by The Decorologist

 

Would you have every thought that this home could be transformed this much, only using the homeowner’s existing furnishings?  But I know what you may be thinking:   how much money would that cost me, and would it be worth it?

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 The Decorologist

 

The Realtor listing this property hired me to Speed Stage (my very own Staging invention!) this home.  Speed Staging is completed in 2 hours utilizing 2 Stagers and the Realtor for a flat fee of $360.  For this staging option we use only the homeowner’s furnishings and decor, so this isn’t for those who have very little to work with or who need consultation for paint colors, flooring, lighting, or other possible updates.  But in this case it was a matter of judicious editing and proper arrangement of furnishings, art, and accessories.  And a whole lot of muscle to get that extra furniture out of the house, as you can see:

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See how happy we were to have this stuff out?

 

Was it worth it?  You tell me – this property SOLD before I could even download the photos from my camera and begin to write up this post!  Here are a few more photos of what we accomplished in that 2 hours:

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Master Bathroom Before Staging 

 

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 Master Bathroom After

 

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  Guest Bedroom Before

 

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 Guest Bedroom After Staging

 

If you are a Realtor in the Nashville, Brentwood, or Franklin area of Tennessee and want to sell your listings quickly for the most money, contact me to find out more about The Decorologist’s Speed Staging option.  Staging Consultations and full-on Home Staging are also offered at reasonable rates.

I Want to Paint It Black

I just started a new Pinterest board this week called “And I Want to Paint It Black,” and it has nothing to do with The Rolling Stones.   Adding a dash of black accents always makes a space look more sophisticated.

black bannister via atlanta homes lifestyles I Want to Paint It Black

via Pinterest

 

If your room looks too light and sweet, a few black accents make the room feel more grounded, more grown up.  It also covers up a multitude of orangey wood furniture!

black painted furniture via house of turquoise I Want to Paint It Black

via Pinterest 

Have you ever considered painting the backs of your bookcase black?  Just see how great it looks:

black in back of bookcase via pinterest I Want to Paint It Black

 via Pinterest

Paint a dated light fixture black, and there may be no need to replace it after all!   Unite a photo grouping  (like I did in this post) with a simple can of black spray paint.  Paint a mismatched chair black, and now it seems to belong after all. Need I go on?

black framed mirror via ruemag I Want to Paint It Black

via Pinterest

Of course, I also love it on interior doors (see this post) and even on window trim (interior or exterior).

black painted trim via decorpad I Want to Paint It Blackvia Pinterest 

Come follow me on Pinterest to see what other things I want to paint black!  What would you paint black?

 

 

 

 

Going to School with The Decorologist

DSC 3690 1 Going to School with The Decorologist In the part of the country where I live, there are many families who decide that homeschooling is the best option for their children.   I have had multiple clients over the last few years who homeschool and have particularly challenging decorating dilemmas.

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This particular family has been successfully educating their 5 children in their home for many years, but their surroundings had been less than inspiring.  This is the front room of their home as it was before The Decorologist stepped in:

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 Before – Homeschool Room

 

It was lined with bookcases full of books and curricula, a few tables and chairs (most of which were too small for their growing children), and various toys and other items.

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 Before – Homeschool Room

  [Read more...]

Nashville Home Stager Shares the #1 Secret to Getting Your House Sold

I started out in this field as a Home Stager before I became an Interior Decorator, Color Consultant, and Design Blogger.  I guess I just don’t know when to stop!  I actually don’t do as much staging as I used to – that’s because I am typically booked out too far to be ready to “stop-drop-and stage”, which is what is typically needed when time is of the essence.

DSC 3715 Nashville Home Stager Shares the #1 Secret to Getting Your House Sold

 Cutest Doggie Ever

But I love a good stage – it’s definitely a wham-bam, thank-you-mam kind of deal.  Instant gratification for a design addict like me.  I’m sharing my latest home staging in this post, as well as the #1 secret to getting your house sold.  See if you can figure it out as we go along.  Let’s start with the “before” photographs of this house.   [Read more...]

Pipe Dreams, Airstreams, and Pinterest

Let me be clear – I am no camper.  But I have had a pipe dream for years about restoring an Airstream trailer.

vintage blue trailer via vintagetrailercamp Pipe Dreams, Airstreams, and Pinterest

 All images in this post are found here

 

Wouldn’t it be fun to decorate it out all retro-dreamy, like a giant dollhouse?

pretty airstream interior via houseofturquoise Pipe Dreams, Airstreams, and Pinterest

 

 

 

My girls could use it as a playhouse in the backyard. [Read more...]

pixel Pipe Dreams, Airstreams, and Pinterest