15 Before & After Photos That Prove the Power of Home Staging


How to Bring Summery Goodness to Your Bedroom

How to Bring Summery Goodness to Your Bedroom

Create a vacation vibe in your at-home sanctuary and you’ll be better able to recharge.

Houzz Contributor, Laura Gaskill

With warmer evenings and sunlit mornings, summer begs us to take a more relaxed approach to life. That might mean a slower-paced schedule, a breezy wardrobe or a goal of keeping the house tidy. These eight rules can help you savor the season each day from the moment you rise and pull open the shades until you tuck into bed at night.

1. I will preserve time at the beginning and end of the day for quiet reflection.Even if it’s only five minutes spent sipping your first cup of coffee in the morning or herbal tea before bed, having a smidgen of dedicated me-time in the peace and privacy of your bedroom can bookend a frantic day, or bring satisfying closure to a pleasant one. Write in your journal, read an inspiring book, meditate or simply look out the window as you set intentions for the day ahead.

2. I will treat myself to extended weekend mornings in bed. If you’re a parent, finding a way to make this happen may be impossible at times, but the bliss of a morning in bed (read: at least 20 uninterrupted minutes with a fresh pot of coffee and your favorite publications) is worth whatever scheduling acrobatics it takes to arrange.

3. I will keep my wardrobe simple. Living out of a suitcase on vacation can seem carefree because you have fewer choices. Re-create that feeling at home by editing your wardrobe down to your most-loved and worn pieces, and stash away (or consign) the rest. While editing, keep in mind that the smaller the wardrobe, the more important it is that everything goes together. Stick with pieces that mix and match (such as colorful, patterned tops and solid, neutral bottoms) to maximize outfit-making potential.

4. I will decorate with reminders of summer. Surrounding yourself with visual reminders of what you love most about summer will make your bedroom feel more like a getaway. Try nautical maps, postcards from far-flung locales, snapshots taken on your last vacation, a bedspread bought in a seaside town, or shells and sea glass collected on the beach.

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5. I will keep things clean and uncluttered. Putting away clothes and shoes each day isn’t a glamorous task, but the five minutes (or less!) of effort is well worth the calm atmosphere you will enjoy coming home to when everything is neatly put away. Need inspiration? Give your bedroom a makeover at the start of summer to motivate yourself to keep the space looking sharp.

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6. I will help overnight guests feel at home. When friends and family come to stay, a few special details are all it takes to make guests feel welcome and comfortable. Snip flowers from the garden for the bedside table, set out a selection of beach reads and make up the bed with light layers. Don’t have a spare quilt or even a guest bed? A tapestry (the sort pinned to dorm room walls) or even a large sarong can make a summery and budget-friendly bedspread, whether you’re covering a bed or an air mattress.

See the rest of this eclectic home

7. I will say yes to mermaids. Mermaids are equal parts kitschy and mysterious, making them the perfect motif for a summery bedroom. Plus, having something to collect makes shopping at your favorite flea markets and art fairs even more fun. Not into mermaids? Pick your own icon of summer, and start collecting.

8. I will let the stars guide me to bed. Can’t get away to that rustic lakeside cabin? Pretend you’re camping at home, and turn down the electric lights in favor of candles and lanterns a few hours before bedtime. You may be surprised at how this one simple change can make your home feel completely transformed, at least for the evening. Indulge in screen-free entertainment like playing cards or board games, and be sure to peek outside at the stars before retiring to your room.

8 Tips and Tricks to Get More Storage From a Small Closet

8 Tips and Tricks to Get More Storage From a Small Closet

Get ideas for arranging your clothes closet with 8 combinations of shelves, hooks, rods and drawers.

Houzz Contributor, Laura Gaskill

Large, luxurious walk-in closets may be the stuff dreams are made of, but they are not always the reality. If the closet space you have to work with is on the petite side, there’s still plenty you can do to make the most of it. From ultraslim shelving to wall-mounted storage, here are steal-worthy ideas from eight closets that put every inch to work.

1. Dresser + hanging rod + curtains. Replacing the closet doors with curtains has freed up some much-needed space in this small bedroom, allowing access to every inch of the reach-in closet. Inside the closet, a high shelf holds baskets (perfect for storing less-used items) over a hanging rod, with a dresser below. The dresser top is put to work too, with a wire storage basket and space for a few pairs of shoes.

Best for: Reach-in bedroom closet.

See more of this bedroom

2. Tall bookcase + hanging rods + wall hooks. A tall, shallow bookcase anchored to the wall provides ample storage space for folded clothes and accessories in this petite closet. Opposite the shelving, rods hold hanging clothes and a set of wall hooks provides a handy drop spot for scarves and jackets.

Best for: Narrow walk-in closet.

3. Shelves under eaves + short hanging rod. Shelves in graduated sizes make the most of this space beneath a sloped ceiling. Two wide drawers hold folded clothes below, and a short rod provides space for hanging items.

Best for: Bedroom with sloped ceiling.

4. Wall-mounted shoe rack + hanging rod + high shelf. A slim wire shoe rack mounted on the wall holds plenty of pairs without taking up precious floor space. At the back of the closet, two high wire shelves over the hanging rod hold luggage and other infrequently used items.

Best for: Deep, narrow closet.

5. Shelves + crates + lidded boxes. A simple setup with wall-mounted shelving is made more functional with the addition of crates to keep bulky items from toppling over. Wall hooks hung both low and high keep bags and belts neatly stowed, and lidded boxes provide a spot for stashing small accessories.

Best for: Small closet with more folded than hanging clothes.

6. Hanging rod + high shelf + floor basket. An easy setup for a petite closet, this allows room for hanging items on the single rod, with a storage shelf above and a basket on the floor to hold accessories (or clothes to be dry-cleaned). If your closet is a bit wider, add shelving to the wall opposite.

Best for: Small closet with more hanging than folded clothes.

7. Extra-high hanging rod + step stool. Take advantage of a space with a high ceiling by hanging a second rod extra high, and use it to store off-season or less-used clothes. This frees up the lower portion of the closet for shelves, with wire baskets to keep small items and accessories neat. Be sure to keep a step stool handy to reach the upper rod.

Best for: Petite closet with high ceiling.

8. Shelves + drawers + dressing table. With shelves on one side, a short hanging rod on the other and dresser drawers in the center, this petite closet fits in a little bit of everything. The mirror against the back wall turns the drawer unit into a dressing table with room for jewelry, perfume and other getting-ready essentials. Open bins on the highest shelves keeps less-used items out of the way but still easily accessible.

Best for: Small reach-in closet with mostly folded clothes.

Tell us: Do you have a small closet? Share a photo in the Comments!

5 Bunk Bed Ideas for Double the Fun

5 Bunk Bed Ideas for Double the Fun

These 5 bunk bedrooms from Coldwell Banker listings are double the trouble, double the fun!

Bunk beds are no longer just the accommodations of summer camp.  Bunk beds are making a comeback in a big way.  Whether they serve as space for sleepovers, or make extra room for guests in your second home, bunk beds can be a fun way to add sleeping space to any home.  These 5 stacked bedrooms from Coldwell Banker listings are double the trouble, double the fun!

Coldwell Banker-Mason & Morse, Carrie Wells, Eagle Pines Log House, Jan. 29, 2015


This Miramar, FL property is listed by John Cook with Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate.


This Woody Creek, CO property is listed by Brian Hazen with Coldwell Banker Mason Morse.


bunk bed_boston mA


The Ponds House, Carrie Wells, June 13, 2015

6 Revitalizing Update Ideas for Your Bedroom

Transform your bedroom from drab to fab with these easy updates.

How’s your bedroom looking these days? When was the last time you replaced the linens or thought about getting the carpet deep cleaned? Since we spend so much time in our bedrooms — where we begin and end every day — it’s important to keep things clean, comfortable and in the best shape possible. Instead of taking everything out and starting anew every few years, use these ideas keep your bedroom feeling fresh:

#1 Declutter

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One way to keep your bedroom fresh is to get rid of the clutter. Whether it’s shoes, magazines, old clothes or the like, get rid of whatever you don’t need or don’t use often. It opens up floor space, closet space and other areas. Plus, there’s another bonus: if you clear a dreadfully cluttered floor, you reduce the risk of tripping and falling too.

#2 Add more lights

If your bedroom gets only a little natural light and looks shadowy the rest of the time, think about adding more lights — maybe standing or table lamps. You can also upgrade your fluorescent or incandescent lighting to their CFL or LED alternatives, which are more energy efficient and pay back in utility bill savings. A more expensive option is to replace the existing windows in the room with bigger, more energy efficient ones. This will probably involve expanding the space for the window, so keep that cost in mind.

#3 Paint the walls

Depending on the look and feel of your bedroom, painting the walls might be just the thing to revitalize the space. If you you’ve been living with a bright, pastel color that’s been there since you purchased the house, changing it might help renew the atmosphere of the room. The cost to paint a room varies depending on the paint you choose and the preparation involved. Usually, if you’re inexperienced and want to avoid carpet damage, you’ll call a painter. However, with some experience — or a lot of YouTube videos and trial and error — you can tackle this project over a weekend. Keep in mind that paint isn’t cheap; choose a shade that you’re willing to live with for five years, at least.

#4 Bring in natural elements

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To add more oxygen and nature to your bedroom, think about adding houseplants. Houseplants helps remove toxins from the air, and many are very low maintenance. If you own pets, choose a variety that is not poisonous to them and that will still add to the overall aesthetic appeal of your bedroom. Just keep in mind if you do purchase a plant that requires watering, put down some kind of plastic catcher or rug in case of excess overflow.

#5 Hang a mirror

A mirror can be benefit a bedroom in many ways. For those who like to take the time and reflect on their image before work, it’s a handy accessory. For a bedroom that’s very small or narrow, it helps to add a feeling of more space and openness. If your bedroom is lacking in light, mirrors can be positioned to reflect natural or artificial light and cast it across the room to make it feel brighter. Plus, depending on the type of mirror you choose, it adds some extra appeal to the bedroom overall. Mirrors are relatively inexpensive to hang — about $270 depending on their size.

#6 Update the linens

If you’ve had the same linens since college, there’s a good chance it’s time to make an update. Think about how you can match the bedroom linens to those in your bathroom or complement the walls and carpeting. You might want to expand your color scheme in the bedroom, using the comforter as your centerpiece. You’ll want it to last for a while, so don’t invest in something that will tear or easily fall apart with repeated use. Think about an area rug if your flooring is prone to scratches, nicks or stains.