Monday, October 21, 2013

Styling an older home

I was recently approached by a client who owned an older style home, all the rooms were painted the same colour, some rooms had brick walls and others had wood paneling. There was lead lighting everywhere and blue vertical blinds to match the blue kitchen.  The client provided me with a brief to style the home for sale and make it look like it was brand new.

I come across this kind of brief all the time and trust me, it is very hard to make an old home look like it was built yesterday. Helping a client to understand this can be difficult. Each home owner wants their house to look fantastic when it goes on the market, and so they should, presentation is everything, but it is important to remember that people who enter your home as potential buyers are looking at your home for a reason, whether it be the size, the style or simply the era of the house. It is then important in my industry to respect the era and style of the home and style it accordingly.  Here are some photos of a recent older property styled by Styled to Profit.
This room is a lounge area that leads onto the balcony and has a view of the kitchen. It is clearly an entertaining area but it is not the only one.  As you can see there is a lot of wood to work with. As fun as it is to play with modern metal and glass furniture it is not suitable for this room.  In the photo below you can see that I kept up the wood theme with the coffee table and sofa legs.  I chose light coloured sofas to brighten up the room and kept with the natural colours for the accessories. I always need to include a pop of colour which I did so with the orange cushions and select pieces of decor.
Dining area...pretty simple. Just needed a dining table and chairs with some decor. They are not very clear in this photo but the lead light windows include quite a lot of detail which matched the lead light pendant that hung above the table. Because of these details I kept the styling very simple, if I had have added too much the room would have looked cluttered and overdone. Keep it simple!
The room below is the family room. It is a long rectangular room with really awkward positioned windows, doorways and bar area. The vacant photos below are not the best but in the photo immediately below, you can see a doorway on the right side of the photo. There is another doorway on the opposite wall slight further along as you can see in the next photo. 
You can also see the bar area and a wall of mirrors, these features make both of these long walls difficult to work with as there is limited room for furniture. The brick wall also makes the room slightly darker so it was important for me to lighten it up with furniture. 
Unfortunately the photograph below is slightly blurry but as you can see I selected light furniture to brighten the room up a little bit together with a light rug and ottoman. 
Due to the size of the room it is very important to show that there is room for a lot of people to entertain and sit down. The inclusion of this single seat below together with another single seat on the opposite wall slightly over the window assists by showing this.
As there are two doorways in this room it is important to leave space for potential buyers to be able to walk through the room easily with no furniture obstructing the walking space. This meant that the television had to be placed slightly further away on the only other usable wall space. Not a huge issue as a television does not have to be the only focal point in a room. The furniture filled the room nicely showing the large size but also the ability to place a lot of furniture in there for entertaining all friends and family.
The home has 3 bedrooms, see below for some before and after shots of the bedrooms.
There is also a fantastic balcony area with an amazing view. I styled this area very simply so that potential buyers could walk out of the balcony with their family, have lots of room and see the beautiful view. A simply outdoor setting is all that is needed in this area.
As you can see even with difficult shaped rooms, furniture placement is everything. It is always important to show the space of the room together with the various functions that can be achieved. A light filled room will always look bigger than one with limited windows or dark walls, so to help make a room look bigger in this instance, lighter furniture is all you need. Add a few lamps here and there, make sure you turn them on and voila.....light and space achieved.

It is all about smoke and mirrors and there are so many tricks to help you achieve what you want in your home, as long as you understand that respect is needed for both the style and era of the house.

If you need some help with furniture placement, please feel free to comment below, post of our Facebook page or even send through an email...always happy to help!

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