Well, it’s about time! The seemingly endless winter is over, leaving us so ready for a change in the seasons. The design projects we planned may or may not have been accomplished, and there’s still so much to do. Let’s just jump right in and go to it – or let’s not.
In all of my years as a designer and an “eager beaver” who thrives on accomplishment, I’ve wanted instant gratification for my clients. But I’ve learned that putting a “decorating toe” in the water before diving in has saved money and grief.
My “decorating toe” is actually the first important step in any decorating project and is deceivingly simple. Make a plan and a plan. The first plan requires a strategy in writing, whether it be a major kitchen renovation or a living room re-do. What is your overall goal? Who are the sources you will need? How will you fund the project? What is the time frame for completion?
The second plan is the floor plan – that is the layout of the space for maximum efficiency and to accomplish your space planning needs commensurate with your lifestyle. Think about the existing spaces as a blank canvas ready for your personal paint brush. Will opening a wall between two rooms better accomplish your goals? What about switching your living room and dining room? What are those “kids long gone” bedrooms doing for you?
On your first free Sunday when you’re so anxious to go out and buy something, my advice is to stay in your pajamas, get out those big black garbage bags and start cleaning up and organizing what you have. I heard those groans – but here’s a little story for you.
About two weeks ago, I met a really nice, really busy lady at a consult. Kids grown & gone, good guy husband who doesn’t care about decorating and a lovely home with good bones. After my 2 hour visit, she hired me even though she was on a limited budget – imagine that! (What a smart gal to realize that I could actually save her money and time!)
We made a plan and a plan and I sent her a present – Vinnie – my professional organizing guy to help her organize and pack up her kids’ rooms before I brought in my movers to repurpose most of her existing furniture in her own home and create more functional space. With her old master bedroom furniture in her daughter’s room and her sofas in my consignment store, we were now ready to shop, and we started in my consignment store, finding great rugs, and a beautiful high quality sofa and chairs, at amazing prices. Our next step will be to choose the right floor plan for her den and complete her master bedroom. Now this gal, my client, is not only smart – but talented. She’s actually going to paint and hang wallpaper herself – a great way to save a lot of money.
So what are your goals for this Spring? By making a plan and a plan, cleaning up and organizing first, finding the right sources and shopping intelligently, you can stretch your decorating budget and be ready for a Spring awakening in your home!
Note: For a great way to stretch your budget, visit Uniquely Natalie and find quality merchandise at unbelievable prices. Open Thursday – Sunday, 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM. Or visit our website at www.uniquelynatalie .com. Phone: 631-686-5644