Kiki Interiors - Decor and Staging

Monday, August 31, 2015

Pillow Talk - let's Talk Pillow Arranging

Whether you are decorating your home or staging it for sale, pillows are a great way to add some visual interest to your space, a pop of color and/or pattern and some soft texture.  Pillows are also a great way to tie up your concept.

We love pillows and they seem like such a small element but do they ever make a difference in a room.

We are often asked for ideas on how to arrange pillows on a sofa.  Here are some great tricks and tips to arrange your pillows like a pro.

When it comes to pillow arranging there is no set rule but they are a few standard arrangements that work.

 If You Want a Modern Look: Go for an odd number, like three or five, rather than more traditional pairs. A few big pillows look cleaner than a jumble of smaller ones, which can seem like too much punctuation.

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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

We Answer Wednesday - How to Include Metal stools in My Decor style

“I LOVE the look of metal stools in the kitchen when I am flipping through magazines. For my own home, I worry that they will be cold, and won’t fit with my décor style. Are metal stools only for industrial décor?”

 Copper Lighting and Stools via Decorating with Copper on the Spruce + Furn Blog. Image Source: Raya Todorova via Behance

Great question!! Metal stools are definitely everywhere these days and for good reason! They are stylish, easy to clean and super versatile. The great thing about metal stools is that there isn’t just one kind.. they come in many different colours, styles, dimensions and go with a variety of décor. They are not limited to one décor style.

 My dream house will have a very functional work island like in this kitchen. I love the contrasting color of the island, the wood countertop, and the column-like corners. The metal stools add just the right amount of flair to this traditional kitchen. I find at my home I spend the majority of my time in the kitchen and this island would make my kitchen work easier while giving me a nice place for my husband and I to have our meals. Another great BHG Idea!

Decorating with the “unexpected” is often a welcome addition to your space.. having every single piece resemble one another can look boring and typical. By adding in metal stools in your mostly wood home, or into a mostly white room, or adding a pop of colour in another wise monochromatic space keeps your home looking interesting, and most importantly, personalized. You are the one who lives there, so its important that you love what you have inside. This should be a reflection of your personality. - Amelia Metal Cafe Barstool with Back in Galvanized Finish - Set of 2 - I love the idea of using these in the kitchen and putting a breakfast bar where the "hutch" was supposed to be?

Remember, you don’t have to do ‘full’ metal. If you like the look of metal, but are nervous how it will blend into your home, then buy something with another texture. Maybe some wood detailing.. or a fabric seat with metal legs. Be creative! Buy what you love.

 pretty kitchen, love the industrial bar stools and kitchen island.

Another positive of using metal in your home.. is that it is super easy to keep clean. Just wipe and go. If you are a busy family with children, you don’t have to worry about them staining any upholstery. Metal is fantastic for kitchen chairs as well, for the same reasons.

 The white wood and brick bounce the sunlight around this fabulous kitchen

Having metal stools in fun colours is another fabulous and family friendly look. Children typically love colour, adding different colours into your space is a fantastic way to freshen up your space.


Blending styles is easier than you think! Of course, there are definitely styles that don’t jive as well together. Modern and Traditional pieces don’t typically go as well as say country and rustic. Adding some rustic pieces to your contemporary décor is an easy transition. Having an eclectic space is another easy style to blend pieces together. If you add in metal, add some elsewhere as well. Even just adding a metal accessory to tie the textures together will make it look planned and on purpose.  the image below is a great example of tying in some common threads, the metal legs on the stool pair beautifully with the metallic back splash tiles and with the metal pitcher on the counter. Having some commonality in your space always helps to give that ‘designer look’ you see in magazines.

 Give It Some Shimmer - 10 Kitchen Backsplashes That Wow on HGTV

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Wednesday, August 19, 2015

We Answer Wednesday - Curb Appeal

"My husband and I will be putting our home on the market but not for a few months.  By the time, it is listed for sale we will be in Sunny Florida. The interior of the home will be clean and tidy, plus it will be furnished but do we need to get regular outdoor maintenance taken care of?"

It's so great that you are planning ahead for the sale of your home.  The interior of the home being clean, tidy and staged is great but don't forget about the exterior!  Yes, everyone loves to see a beautifully manicured lawn, lush and colourful gardens and green trees in the summer months but that doesn't mean that curb appeal doesn't play a role in the other months, too.

Curb appeal isn't just a summer thing, it's important year round! The exterior of your home is the first thing buyers will see and if it is not well maintained that could be a bit of a red flag to buyers.  You also you want to make a good first impression and a welcoming one, too.  And in the winter months, not maintaining your exterior can also be a safety issue - those are equally important factors when it comes to selling your home.

The summer months are definitely the prettiest months for curb appeal but a well maintained exterior is noticeable all year long. So much of the monthly maintenance is dependent on your climate but here are some helpful tips.

 It's easy to see the classic appeal of this 1948 Cape Cod-style home now. But would you have recognized its potential as these homeowners did when it came on the market? Find out here.

In the fall months -
*sweep the porch and walkway, and driveway
*make sure all light bulbs are in working order (the days are getting shorter so lights will be very important)
*the grass is still growing so be sure to have it cut
*for some extra curb appeal some fall planters or a wreath maybe even some pumpkins to celebrate the fall season.

 Love this front door

In the winter months-
*be sure to shovel the porch,driveway and walkways,
*salt or sand those areas too
*again be sure that the light bulbs are fully functional and set to turn on at dusk, this is great for showings but also anyone driving by
*to add some extra curb appeal you can add a winter wreath!

 A wood bucket filled with logs at the front door adds a rustic, wintry touch to a home's curb appeal, saying, "Come on in; there's a warm fire blazing inside."

In the spring months-
*the grass isn't quite green yet but the flowers are starting to bloom (depending on the climate) but *give your lawn a bit of a rake to remove any winter debris,
*clear off the porch, walkways and driveways (debris, salt/sand and any garbage)
*for some extra impact bring out some colourful outdoor pillows to any bench or seating, add a spring floral wreath
*later in the spring add some planters with spring flowers to add some colour

front porch

Before you put your home on the market be sure to check that your exterior has the following:
- a clear address plate (you want buyers and agents to find your property)
- the paint on the front door isn't chipped or peeling
- the front steps are in good condition
- the mail box, grip set and door bell are in good working condition
- windows close and open easily
- the exterior materials (brick, siding etc...) are in good condition

Any buyer that comes to your home should be 'WOW'ed by it and it shouldn't matter if it is May or January.  Make that impression every time!

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Thursday, August 13, 2015

How To Stage My Bathroom

 Home Staging is an important step when selling your home.  You really need to set yourself apart from the pack and you want to do that by putting your best foot forward! The bathroom is one of the most used rooms in a home and it is a hot spot for buyers.  Buyers want to see an amazing bathroom - updates, clean and perfect! Home Staging can really set the scene for those buyers and create that picture perfect bathroom.  Here are some simple ways to make that bathroom memorable for buyers.

 Gray is my favorite neutral. Love it in a bathroom. Rachel Reider Interior Designs

Paint those walls in a neutral tone. A fresh coat of paint goes a long way and always make a space look and feel clean.  Plus a bathroom is a small space so if you are doing the painting yourself, it isn't a huge project.  But be sure to tell your paint supplier that you are painting a bathroom that way you will get the right blend of paint.  Opt for a neutral tone.  It is more universal and is appealing for most buyers.  We recommend choosing a neutral tone that works with the current tones in the house.  So if you have beige walls opt for a tone with a warm undertone a cream or even a very warm grey would work.  Don't start a whole new look, colour palette and style in the bathroom - it will chop up the house.

Edgecomb Gray by Benjamin Moore.  Rich light neutral that works beautifully in a variety of lighting situations (Color Palette Monday) The Creativity Exchange

Lighting, you want to make sure you have enough! Task lighting over the vanity and recessed lighting are key! Make sure your bulbs are as bright as possible and in working condition (that goes for the whole house).

Accessories really make a difference and are an affordable way to really set the scene.
Small fake plants are a nice touch. There are many plants that are artificial but you can even tell! Choose a plant to place on your counter top or on another surface you have such as a shelf, toilet, edge of a bathtub. 

 Relaxing vignette in bathroom, epsom salts in a pretty jar, very practical and easy to recreate

I love candles in a bathroom. I think it gives the space a serene feel and they smell great! Beautiful candle holders, or just candles on their own are another great layer to add to the bathroom accessory list. You can have one large or a grouping of smaller ones. Choose something you love.

 I would do a little longer shelf not so cramped--and not keep towels on top since I have a linen closet. but the pegs under a shelf is really pretty! or a scroll work wood with pegs on it? would be perfect for my towel and my robe!!!

Art is a nice touch as well. Somewhere in the bathroom you will likely have a bit of wall space for a small piece or two. Add something that goes nicely with your previously selected colour palette. It doesn’t have to all be the same as what you have but something with a hint of consistency will blend beautifully into the space.

 Framed Fabric as Wall Art --for in the guest bath & guest room

Small trays for jewelry and personal items are a functional and pretty option to keep on the counter top. Choose something shiny!  Maybe something that matches the handles in your bathroom such as gold, chrome or brass. The continuation of similar metals makes your space look well thought out, and very harmonious.   But don't leave too much jewelry on display or anything really expensive!

 mirrored dresser-top tray  pottery barn

The key is to repeat a colour. Having 7 different colours, patterns and textures may seem like a good idea, but it will likely just have an eclectic feel. Try to use some consistency and repeat an accent colour you have already started with.  

 Home Staging - Bathroom

And of course, the easiest thing to do - is give that bathroom a really good clean!

For anyone looking to sell their home, staging your bathroom it really sets the scene for buyers.  The bathroom is a hot spot that buyers look for so show it off with simple accessories, light and neutral colour palette. Create that 'dream' bathroom for those buyers!

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Wednesday, August 12, 2015

We Answer Wednesday - Family Photos

"I always hear on real estate TV shows when the agents are giving home staging advice that the home sellers need to remove their personal and family photos.  Why is that?"

Yes, you definitely hear that one those shows! That is good advice and we completely agree with it.  We tell our sellers that they need to remove personal photos along with other personalized items like religious decor and collectibles. The reason for this is that you are trying to present this home as the buyers 'new' home, so your memories shouldn't be 'hanging' around in the form of framed photos and gallery walls. You don't want potential buyers to feel like they are just visiting when they attend a private viewing or an open house.  They need to see themselves living in the home and your photos all over the home can really create a mental block for buyers.

When it comes to family photos, don't get us wrong - we do love a gallery wall, it is great way to display and cherish your memories -but when it comes to home staging, those are your memories and you need to pack up with you, so that the home is a blank canvas for new memories.

If your photos are in frames and not wall mounted but displayed on surfaces like side tables, coffee tables and bookcases - those photos are not only personalizing the space but they are also adding clutter.  It's really important when you are staging your home for sale that the clutter is removed.

It can be tough for sellers to pack up those family photos but since you plan on bringing them to your next home, think of this as a pre-pack of your most precious pieces.

Same goes for religious art/items - you don't know who will be buying your home so keep the look and feel neutral. 

Generations of wedding days.  Also like this layout for travel pics

You don't need to remove all art from your walls just the personal pieces.

Instead of displaying your photos, try these ideas instead.

If you have a gallery wall already in place and feel that removing all of the photos will make a mess of your walls.  Try replacing the photos with some temporary placeholders like neutral photos, maps, small art, letters etc...The gallery wall is a current look and a lot of people like it.  It will take some time to remove the photos and replace them with a more neutral item but you won't have to patch a bunch of nail holes.

30 Designers secret tips: Wonderful Home Decoration

Another alternative is over sized art - it adds some visual interest, fills up the walls space and a splash of colour keeping the home warm and welcoming.  Over sized art also has an upscale look and feel.  Stick with landscapes and/or abstract- they are neutral options and work in every space from bedrooms to dining room and with works with every style.

in my house i'm going to have a room dedicated to artwork. the walls will be covered in paintings :D

Remember when it comes to staging your home for sale, you want to attract as many potential buyers as possible.  De-personalizing your space is one important element in the home staging process.

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Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Positive Feedback - Home Staging Consultation

I just wanted to thank you for the advice and expertise you provided to my sellers.  I was there to meet the photographer.  OMG,  the place looked amazing!
The painting makes a huge difference and it looks like your long list of tasks was completed.

I will e-mail you the listing so you can see for yourself tomorrow...
Did you happen to take any pictures?  I wish I had..... the transformation is unbelievable.

Once again, a BIG thank you!

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We Answer Wednesday - Monochromatic Decorating At Home

"I don't love bright colour.  I know lots of people love colour in their space but it's just not for me.  How can I make my space look great without big, bold colour? I don't want it to look boring."

Colour can do a lot for a space and we often tell clients to think - colour, pattern, texture and shine as the 4 key elements in a space to keep it visually interesting. But not everyone loves colours and that's OK.  You can definitely have a chic pace with little to no colour but be sure to really play up the other 3 elements (pattern, texture and shine).  You will also want to play with varying shades of your chosen hue - it's called 'monochromatic' decor.

 Monochromatic decorating consists of only one color. At first, this may sound like monochromatic is another word for boring, but it’s quite the contrary. Decorating in a monochromatic color scheme relies on using various tones, textures, and patterns to build a beautiful space. It requires you to be more creative and use the basics of great design

What's really great about monochromatic is that it usually results in a very calming and soothing space.  So for someone with a hectic and fast paced work schedule, a monochromatic palette to come home to everyday could be very beneficial. Monochromatic decor tends to look and feel very high-end and luxurious with a touch of glam and elegance.

Here are some examples of what you can use as a guide for monochromatic or tone-on-tone decorating.

monochromatic interior design glam design indulgences luxe magazine Picture_653.png I am in love with this room. It is soothing and elegant.

So this living room is a great example of monochromatic with warm grey tones.  there is some contrast but it's not very high but there are a number of warm grey tones - the walls, drapes, art, pillows, carpet and they are all different and they look incredible together. There is a lot of pattern in this space - the pillows, the ottomans, the rug and even the walls.  The pillows ad the biggest punch due to the darker warm grey tone and the pattern.  We also see a lot of shine with the glass accents like the lamps, decor pieces and the coffee table.  The small gold accents really add the glam and elegance to this room. This room is timeless, chic and soothing.

50 Rustic Bedroom Decorating Ideas - Interior Design Ideas, Home Designs, Bedroom, Living Room Designs

This bedroom is another example of monochromatic decorating. Again what you will notice is the low contrast with the warm grey tones and the white tones.  There is a lot of layers which add volume and a level of richness.  We have lots of soft textures in this room - wood, and lots of textiles. A classic palette, gorgeous bedding and a relaxing bedroom. Neutrals have never been so far from dull. This bedroom has an understated elegance that is full of lovely features from the distressed beams in a white wash finish and the over sized mirror with antique details.

Love the huge rug idea Beautiful use of gray in this monotone color scheme. What a restful, elegant bedroom.

Another bedroom with lot of layering and mixing of patterns in a cool blueish-grey colour palette.  The dark wood accents add some depth and contrast to the space as well.  This bedroom feels like an upscale hotel room. The grey-blue palette is clean and sophisticated, focusing on luxurious textures such as the headboard and the wood accents in furniture like the bench at the foot of the bed add interest.

What you will notice in monochromatic decor is that the tones we see most often are neutrals, mainly grey, taupe and beige - they are easily to work with, there are a lot of tones and they are soothing and with the right mix of art, textures and accessories you get instant luxury. You can certainly have a tone on tone space in a deeper or bolder colour but those deeper richer tones are probably best used as a touch of contrast or an accent. is one of the most leading sites for the Contemporary lighting styles and Modern lighting which is suitable for your personality and easily fits your budget even then when you are carrying tight budget.

What really keeps monochromatic decorating from being boring is the combination of texture, pattern and shine but also the layering. Layering pillows of different textures and tone on a sofa or bed really adds depth and luxury to a room. But you can add depth with art and accessories, too. We also love layering lighting - so have different types of lighting in one room.

So to keep your space from being dull and boring, find a main colour you like and use that as your base.  Be sure to add some soft contrast so add some lighter tone pieces (in white or off white) and some darker pieces (a dark wood accent or a darker shade of your chosen colour).  Be sure to have lots of varied texture (so soft and hard), lots of layers using texture and/or some pattern - plus a bit of shine really brings instant elegance - glass lamps or a glass coffee table are easy choices.

This room is aesthetically soothing by its use of a monochromatic color scheme. The use of varying tones of soft blues is a great way to freshen a space while the white adds a level of sophistication.

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Monday, August 3, 2015

Current Project - SOHO Condo Decorating Job

We don't often post about our current jobs but this one has really 'caught our eye'. This was an interesting project and a bit of a challenge because we were hired to purchase furniture for one home but we had to use that same furniture to stage another - both properties are owned by the same client but they are selling one and moving into the other. 

The clients (a couple) both like an industrial style - she also likes a touch of retro and vintage and he likes some 'cabin' or country elements.  At first we weren't sure how to pull this off.  The challenge of buying furniture for one home and using it in a condo (seen here) and then the blending of tastes and styles.

So we started with the main furniture pieces - the sofa, the chair(s) and the bed frame.  We were also very realistic with the clients - not all of your pieces for the house will fit in the condo so find a bit of temporary storage! Once the major furniture pieces arrived and put into place, we then started to work with the rugs and then smaller furniture like the coffee table, and end tables.  We had some accessories including pillows and some art to start styling with but we often place our big pieces and then make a shopping list.  Once you see furniture in a space you can then see what's needed and you can see what the problems are!  We quickly realized that light was necessary so we had lamps at the top of our list.  We also wanted a way to add some femininity - we had a lot of dark colours and hard surfaces (wood end tables, metal coffee table and leather head board).  Accessories really help add personality and another dimension in a space plus they can really change up the look of a room.  Art is always the last thing we install.  We have pieces in mind but hang it up last.

The clients don't like a lot of bright colours, so to add visual interest in this room we played with contrasting textures. We have a mix of wood, glass, leather, cow hide, flannel, wool and layers of linen and cotton. To add femininity to this room we used a white duvet with pin tuck detail, layered lots of plush pillows and these lamps with glass and curves add a feminine touch, too!

This corner of the living room has a different energy than the bedroom - which is what we wanted.  Again, the clients didn't want bright colour but the muted mustard tone adds just enough.  We also used lots of texture like leather (chair), chenille (rug), metal (cabinet and coffee table) and faux sheep skin (on the chair).  When you style a property you need to layer and a lot of getting it right is trial-and-error.  Working with odd numbers is best - look at the top of the cabinet we have 3 items in varying heights - a lamp (tall), art (medium) and a decorating plane (short).  We also added an over sized art piece on the wall and a smaller one above the chair.  The clients have a relaxed style and a great sense of humor so we added in some quirky and fun pieces like the 'hipster' bunny art and the pig.

The image below is the other side of the living room.  Again we used some muted colour - greys, mustard and a grey-blue.  We also found a really cool art piece to hang on the small amount of wall space.

When it comes to home decor have some fun and don't be afraid to try some thing new - maybe a rug on an angle will add a new look to the space, try styling the coffee table a bit differently, layer your art or hang something unexpected.  We had a lot of fun decorating and styling this condo. We found some great items at local stores and we didn't have to spend a fortune. 

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