Originally published in Enchanted Homes
Showcasing your house
“When you are staging a home for sale, it must look clean and tidy,” said Ivelisse Brooks, co-owner of Antiquarius Imports. On top of giving a poor first impression, a cluttered house will prevent potential buyers from recognizing its best features, hidden under the mess. In order to appeal to the greatest possible number of prospective buyers, a home should also have a “generic look,” which can be easily achieved by avoiding too much of anything. “For example, you don’t want to overemphasize the Southwestern touches because a buyer may absolutely hate this style and be turned off immediately,” said Brooks. She recommends accentuating the best assets of the house to deflect attention from the less desirable ones. “If your home gets plenty of natural light, make sure that it can be appreciated; open windows and eliminate heavy drapes and curtains,” said Brooks. Avoid barren rooms and spaces that look too sterile. You want people to envision themselves living there.
An empty house is difficult to imagine as a home, but a few simple elements, like cushions or wall hangers, go a long way to create a family ambiance. “When you are selling a home, your goal is that people walk in and think ‘I can live here,’” said Brooks. “That’s what the art of staging can do for you. The most successful staging takes place when buyers want to get not only the house, but everything you have in it.”
Five fabulous ideas to refresh and reinvent a room
Fast and easy room makeovers will set the mood for the change of seasons. You can do a lot with little money; there are many quick fixes that will make a big difference in the look and feel of a home. For a free, simple update, start by deep cleaning the house, rearranging the furniture and rotating accessories from other rooms, then add a floral note with a pretty bouquet. A new house plant can also breathe new life into any room and the same goes for silk flowers, which are maintenance-free.
Rehang pictures, or reframe them if possible. Organize desks, bookshelves and kitchen counters, wash curtains and get rid of the clutter that has accumulated during the winter months. “Having your Oriental rugs washed is another way to refresh your home,” said Ivelisse Brooks, adding that Antiquarius Imports offers rug washing services.
Now, if you get more adventurous, there are other ways to be chic on the cheap. You don’t have to buy a brand-new living room set, or even a big piece like a sofa, to make an impact: often, all you need to update a room is a few touches. Conan & Ivelisse Brooks’ store, Antiquarius Imports, contains a great selection of items that can be used to add artistic flair to any house, and Brooks herself will be happy to offer a few tips on how to do that.
Five decorating ideas by Ivelisse Brooks
1) Add pillows. It is preferable to use odd numbers because small pillows and cushions look better in groups of three or five. They can rejuvenate instantly an old sofa or banco and add a splash of color to any space, just make sure they don’t clash with the rest of the decoration. They don’t need to be expensive; you can buy really nice ones for $19.99 at Antiquarius Imports and spread them all over a room. Cushions and pillows also work well on beds to spice up an old bedspread. They can be changed seasonally, choosing brighter and lighter colors for spring and summer.
2) Dress up. Drape a decorative throw, a vibrant textile or a patterned rug around a piece of furniture. Throws can disguise anything that is either old or slightly damaged. A nice patterned rug offers a fast facelift for sofas, ottomans and even walls, if you want to hang it up. Wall hangers create excellent focal points and can make a statement in an otherwise bland-looking room. Experiment with unusual colors and appealing patterns. Don’t be afraid to be bold!
3) Play with pottery. Take a beautiful ceramic or pottery piece and place it on a table or display it on a shelf. You can decorate it with fruits, like apples or peaches, which will have the added benefit of filling the house with good smells… and more color. Again, they don’t need to be overly expensive, just pretty. Antiquarius has ceramics at $19.99.
4) Roll out the welcome mat. It will set the mood for people as they come in—they will certainly feel more “welcomed.” The feel of a soft surface is always inviting and the mat will remove mud and dirt from shoes, thus keeping the house cleaner.
5) Shades of light. If you have a corner that needs jazzing up, add a lamp —or several. You can mix and match for a more interesting effect. Table lamps are perfect for “mood lighting.” Antiquarius also offers a wonderful collection of table lamps which normally retail for $150 at $49.99. Track lighting, which can be tailored to fit the room, is also an alternative for specific areas that are difficult to illuminate. Wall sconces can be used in a variety of places, from halls to bathrooms. Display lighting is perfect to accentuate art pieces and at the same time add a touch of sophistication, while small lamps or indirect lights, hidden among plants, produce glowing shadows and add drama to the decor.
Ivelisse Brooks will be happy to speak with you about staging your home as well as helping you choose elements which will in turn help you sell it. Antiquarius Imports, with its impressive collection of antique textiles rugs, African art, kilims and tribal accessories, has un poco de todo —something for every taste and budget.Antiquarius Imports is located in Arroyo Seco at 480 State Road 150 NM 87514 Phone: (575) 776-8381 http://www.antiquariusimports.com/