These staging companies are our September award winners for good reason! Their photos speak for themselves and the stories behind the photos are incredible. There is always a story behind every great design and these staging companies provide tips, vendor advice and are doing some very cool work with their clients...
The Agents Were Impressed
We flipped over the photos of this second full flip house that Angeline Kelly owner of Apple Blossom Staging & Design worked on with her clients.
“What an honor! Thank you so much! My company serves Cedar Falls, Iowa - 50-mile radius area. I helped them with paint colors, flooring, and general home recommendations. We mixed boho, farmhouse, and rustic styles. Homeowners were pleased with the staging, and we had an offer in the first 24 hours this home was on the market. I had several realtors reach out to me (sending me pictures they took in the home) saying how beautiful the staging was. Such a fun project!”
The Viral Effect of a Great Staging Job
In my training I give resources and verbiage on the importance of turning a staging job into a move-in design job once the client sees your talent. Rohini Arya of Treehouse Staging LLC serving Frederick, Maryland, and the surrounding DMV area did just that and is already growing her new staging business fantastically! Here's her story...
“Thank you so much for this wonderful news! As a relatively new home stager this comes as a great encouragement to me.
I got the opportunity to stage this occupied home of a lovely family in North Potomac, Maryland. They wanted to capitalize on the hot market and put their house for sale as soon as possible. I went in for a consultation on Thursday and gave them all that they needed so they could have the best ROI. From painting the cabinets, walls, changing hardware and decluttering! Two days later the family called me back to stage the entire house. They couldn’t have been happier with the transformation. I got the job done in under a week with the house getting multi offers! Now the homeowners want me to help them redesign their newly bought home!! All this couldn’t have been possible without Audra’s training. Can’t thank HSR enough!”
Staging Companies Doing New Construction Staged to Sell FAST
This is the second win for Dora Grondz of Staging By Dora Design, Inc. which serves the East Bay in the SF Bay Area, CA and the second home they staged for this developer. New construction and home staging go hand in hand and are super hot right now! Just look at those views...
“This home was a new custom-built home. Of course, the home sold in less that 3 days and way over asking.”
Design Inspired by Another HSR Staging Company
Jackie Edwards of Gold Medal Home Staging & Design serving the Los Angeles, CA area. This is her second win and she is another very grateful HSR trained stager.
“Thank you very much! I really appreciate the recognition. I’m so grateful to Audra for giving me the tools I needed to launch my business. The story behind the photos: I was inspired by another stager, Mitch Bage of Maison de Campagne who had posted a recent project of his where he stacked the artwork and so I decided to try that in the living room as I loved the clean lines and symmetry it created. I felt it also helped to highlight the beautiful architecture in the ceiling. In the bedroom and office spaces, I wanted to continue the color palette and simply create warm and inviting spaces.”
Our judges loved the soothing blue color palette used throughout the home which brought life to the empty spaces!
Client Saves Hundreds With Design Plan
Another second time winner, Robert French of Tod Ashton Design (who is my "Boston Rob") always gets lucky when he vacations in Aruba! He was there both times we notified him of being a winner. He calls it "One Happy Island".
“The name of my company is Tod Ashton Design and Audra knows me as "Boston Rob”, but my business is in Biddeford Maine, and I service York County. Tod is my middle name and Ashton is my partners. We said if we ever had a company, we would call it Tod Ashton Design.
My studio is 2 Main St Suite 18-130 Biddeford, ME 04005. I can be reached at 207 200 7215.
The design board:
I have to say one of my strengths over the years has been my design boards. I wanted to include this service as part of my home staging and decorating business. Design Files has made it so much easier to do boards. I love working in them.
The inspiration photo is from Lillypad Cottage, and it inspired me for the Kennebunkport living room refresh. My client has exquisite taste and spent a fortune on curtains, mahogany furniture and oriental rugs which made the room feel dark and very formal. I wanted to give her a fresh, lighter, casual, timeless look.
"I absolutely love Uttermost. They are one of my favorite resources. I secretly want the black and white picture from the first time I saw it of ladies’ swimwear from 1959. The pictures of the blue shore birds are also by Uttermost.
The jute carpet replaced a heavy oriental rug, and the heavy curtains came down flooding the room with natural light. We are transitioning in new furniture.
The best part about this project is that the client wasn't in a rush and hired me to shop for her. I was able to source the exact or similar items saving her hundreds of dollars. I got to do what I love most, and my client loves her new space. “
Bedroom Redesign Brought Back to Life
Melissa Ice of One Home to Another serving Fayetteville, NC wins for a second time with this bedroom redesign which shows you how a few key purchases goes a LONG way in updating a space...here's her story:
“Oh wow! Thank you so much again for this honor and to Audra for choosing our work again! This was another great bedroom redesign. The client wanted to bring a lighter and more updated feel to the room. She didn’t want to replace furniture and already had some great Pottery Barn bedding to use and add new textiles too. She had great paint color of SW Interesting Aqua that we wanted to keep and use. Most of her accents and frame colors were black and from about 10 years ago when black and Tuscan kind of feel was popular. She wanted a lot of the black gone and more whites and neutrals.
"We sourced throw pillows, new lamps for height, mirrors to bring in some more light and height since the headboard was very short and unable to be seen. We added new artwork above that was more to scale with the wall and the to help create more of a focal point. She wanted to remove the picture ledges over the dresser, but budget wouldn’t allow, so we sourced new heavy matted frames and reduced the number of prints on her picture ledges so that it wasn’t as cluttered looking and drew the eye in to a focal on the wall. She loved the new look and how the white frames totally changed the look. The client found these great aqua print curtains that paired so well with what we had pulled together and really set off the room when you walked in.”
Nothing Left Up to the Buyer's Imagination
Twinning is winning, especially the second time around for identical twin sisters Kristen Brown and Amy Keeley. They are Co-Owners of Salt + Pine Home Staging serving all of Rhode Island, Southeastern MA, and CT. I personally love their aesthetic which is simple, clean and fresh using lots of white. Here's their story and amazing photos...
“This house that we staged was a vacant property located in Newport, RI. Newport is a coastal community with a vibrant downtown right on the water. This house is in walking distance from all the restaurants and shops.
When we went in to make our design plan, we knew that our staging style of a transitional, neutral coastal vibe would be perfect for this space. We worked with lots of white, beige and texture. Then we added touches of blue and green throughout the home. With subtle coastal touches throughout the home, such as decorative shell balls, an octopus figurine on the coffee table and art with a coastal vibe we created an updated neutral coastal vibe throughout the home.
When we were planning the living room space, we knew we were working with the brown walls and the couch would be placed in front of the window. We knew we wanted symmetry with our artwork, but our inventory didn't have what we envisioned so we created our own pieces to compliment the space.
While the home is large it has a few spaces that could be difficult for buyer to visualize, including two double parlor spaces (one on the first floor and one on the second floor) as well as a first-floor room with an en suite that was a tricky layout due to the number of doors in the room as well as the narrow size.
We staged the double parlor on the first floor as a living room and dining room. The second-floor double parlor became an office with a second sitting room space. Since this home could be a second home, we staged the main floor room with en suite as a second primary bedroom, Newport is a very popular destination, and we were sure the new owners would have lots of guests!
This home was so much fun to stage, and we were so happy that it sold for $1,350.000!
Thanks again, we are honored to be chosen again for this award!”
A Focus on Bringing "Joy" to Every Space
While the photo below may be of Dee Casablanca of D. Casablanca Interiors first design, her story of how she found her calling shows how ingrained it is in her being. Read on and prepare to be inspired!
“Since I was a child, I loved organizing and decorating spaces It was a natural outlet for me to use my creative energy and find joy in the joy others received from my designs. My passion for decorating and design, lead me to a design school on the east coast. Learning from amazing designers and having the opportunity to internship with them. I was sure I was going to use my passion and talents in a career that would allow me use and expand my creativity and design pallets. That was not the case; instead, I found myself working retail on the design team, in a furniture store for several years. The rules and regulations did not allow me to use or expand my passion or creativity toward design. I found myself dreading going to work each day. Between the toxic work environment, hours and days required for me to work and feeling as though my passion and skills were stagnant. I began carrying this stagnant, low energy to other areas of my life. I knew deep inside I had to make a shift. I quit my job and created D. Casablanca Interiors with the help of HSR staging certification training. It helped me create my business plan and gave me the confidence to shine. Thank you, Audra Slinkey, for continuing to motivate me with your brilliant light. I enjoyed countless hours of training with you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
"I continue to focus and visualize the joy my clients feel when they have a home that brings calm and flow to their overall life. I feel joy and purpose to offer this service to others, but it goes beyond design. The many relationships that have been built and nurtured over time, has been a gift. Home is the space we retreat from the day to day. It’s the space we nurture and care for ourselves and our family. Our home reflects our personality, how we see ourselves and the world. Working with others to create joy, calm, organization, memories with friends and families, is gift and passion I embody, using creative design. Whether it be working with relators or individuals, my offering is creating a space where others can feel and experience their desired outcomes.”
Student Living Staging and Design Across the U.S.
I always say that you never know where this industry and your talent will take you but this story is a bit of a "first" for me!
Amber Watkins of Twelve Nine Designs, LLC is based in Fort Worth, TX, but serves student living firms nationwide by creating a complete design plan and then travelling to do the full install. Her story shows that staging and redesign can apply to many different types of housing! Here's her story...
“I am so excited to be a winner and have my work recognized!"
"These photos were part of a student living rebrand in Orlando Florida. I have staged over 60 student model homes for my client in the last 2 years as they have embarked on a portfolio-wide rebrand where they have introduced 4 different brand families. Rebrand involves property name changes, new marketing strategies, and aesthetic changes in the model and clubhouse/amenity spaces. That is where I step in.
Phase 1 is to completely redesign the models to match the new brand. Step 2 will be the clubhouse spaces. I have the task to take the color palette, characteristics and personality of the brand and create my interpretation of that brand through the design. What makes each property unique is the fact that I can add touches that tell the story of the university or city that the property caters to. For example, in the artwork above the bed, you will find Micky Mouse in the background to represent Orlando. We add a lot of texture, interactive decor, and colors that will appeal to the student age demographic. There have been some weeks that my team has staged 3 model homes in a 4-day period, each 2 - 4 bedrooms, many times in different states. A lot of prep and virtual planning is involved months in advance, up to the day of installation. Being a team of 2, it must run like a well-oiled machine. I was fortunate to find my niche in the student living redesign by working for 18 years in the student living industry. My passion for redesigning model homes and renovating clubhouse spaces turned into a career by opening my own redesign firm specifically for student living firms. I am living my dream!”
Skeptical Seller Loves the Staging
Morgan Malott of Studio M Staging serving the Bay Area in Northern California is a second time winner of the Best of the Best Award. She did a wonderful job of updating this home that the owners were skeptical about staging, but of course they ended up loving it!
“A little about that home. The clients were very skeptical about staging. It took a lot of patience on our end to gain the client’s trust. When we completed the work, the clients were no longer skeptical and were so impressed by the transformation. The home had lovely bones but was seriously outdated with the dark heavy wood. We wanted to create a contemporary vibe in this home by bringing in pieces that were current and on trend.”
Trusting the Design Vision
Shannon Marley of Maple Grove Interiors, which services Ozark Missouri and all surrounding areas, really lightened up this dark home with her expert redesign skills. Her use of natural woods is perfect for this home. Read on for more…
“This was a redesign job I did for a client. I was on an extremely tight budget, so we shopped Facebook marketplace and our local retail stores. The beautiful night stands you see in the bedroom were a wonderful find on marketplace. The dining table as well was another find on market. Refurbished for the table it is now.
"From the start I knew what I wanted the space to feel like. It was a challenge to get the homeowner to trust the vision, but she finally gave and let me do my thing. We removed one sofa to allow for a much better flow of traffic and the curtains are made from painter’s tarps."
We replace both the living room and dining room rugs and added a rug to the carpeted bedroom. I had her pull what accessories she had on hand, and we purchased a few new to tie the room together. After much pleading and encouraging I talked her into making the large canvas prints you see on the credenzas.
All in all, it turned out wonderful and I wouldn’t change a thing. In the end her and her husband stated it was the first time in over a year of owning their home that it felt like their home. I would say that a winner in my book."
Rearranged to Sell
McRae Van Noy of New Spruce Interiors, LLC., a staging and interior design business in Pleasant Grove, Utah established earlier this year, is very appreciative of winning this award, especially being new to the staging business.
“Wow, thank you so much for the recognition! My partner, Lisa Apple and I enjoy realizing the potential beauty in the homes we stage while using and rearranging much of what the homeowner already has and bringing in new items to create the best look and most success in the real estate market.
The photo is a small living room in Utah. New Spruce Interiors brought in new furniture and decor items, using earth tones and subtle textures to create an inviting and livable room, a space a potential buyer couldn’t resist. The items in this photo were selected and arranged by McRae Van Noy and Lisa Apple. Photography by Katie Stock.”
Whole Home Staged to Perfection
Elisa Diaz serving the Seattle, WA area does such a beautiful job creating a soothing fall look. I really love the neutral color palette and the layering along with the mixed textures she uses in this stage.