Would reimagining your space for work and school help you feel less crammed and cluttered…
Decorating vs staging: what’s the difference between beautifying the home you live in, vs staging a home you’re ready to sell? Here are 6 things to know.
Staging is part art, part science: we use the elements and techniques of design to tell a specific story based on the real estate market in a given area.
Decorating a client’s existing home draws on similar elements and techniques, but with a completely different purpose in mind: to enhance the daily life experienced by the family living in the home.
If you’ve ever oohed and ahhed over staged-home photos, it’s important to remember that staging creates a dream snapshot of what life in your house COULD be — but no one really LIVES this way!
Decorating vs Staging
Staging’s end goal is to drive offers
Given the underlying business purpose of staging (to help people feel they’re getting SO much that they’re inspired to make a great offer), it’s not surprising that staging emphasizes strategies like:
- neutral color palettes, with the goal of brightening, enlarging, and/or create a more pulled-together look that’s easy on the eyes;
- larger artwork and decor items, proportionate to room size;
- adjustments in furniture position to enhance traffic flow in a space.
It’s not that these fundamentals don’t apply for design clients – they do! – they’re just used more selectively, and are balanced out by other goals the homeowner may have.
Decorating’s end goal is to enhance the joy in YOUR daily living experience
While not an exhaustive list of decorating vs staging, here are 6 ways that decorating is different:
1. You’re the “consumer”! The whole design is focused on enhancing your family’s personal preferences. Your decorating consultant will speak to you at length about your lifestyle, impact of colors, natural and artificial lighting, how you use your room(s); they’ll ask about your favorite details in your home and decor… and much more, all to ensure the finished look makes your heart positively sing!
2. Color schemes, and paint colors in particular, are still important, but you might not always care so much about making the room visually expand. Sometimes, in our personal dwellings, we might want to create a warmer or more intimate feeling. Or we simply get joy from being immersed in certain colors. This is all AOK in personal home decorating.
3. Furniture layout can, and should, be customized to your family’s lifestyle. Staging is about modeling a lifestyle that anyone can imagine themselves stepping into; home decorating serves only you! Maybe you love that little desk by the window, or hate dining tables. Decorating consultants help bring in new ideas, and make the most of what’s already working, so you truly get to live your way.
4. Wall art (and other decor), can be more eclectic and expressive. And while we would still recommend minimizing the number of pieces you have out at any one time (the more that’s on display, the less each stands out—and the longer it takes to clean!), you don’t need to keep things so wide-open.
- One helpful TIP from our friend Lisa Menees at SOSbyLisa home and office organizing: rotate your decor, photos and knickknacks seasonally—almost like a gallery shows different themed exhibits.
5. Family photos and souvenirs can be front and center. This is probably one of the biggest decorating vs staging differences people see. While personal items have to go when staging a house, (so buyers forget they’re walking around someone else’s home), that’s not the case with decorating.
Featuring the treasures of your life are often a big part of creating spaces you never want to leave! Decorating pros are skilled at helping you come up with new and creative ways to highlight these precious items.
6. Rooms serve your family and their activities. Many houses have rooms that serve multiple functions, or spaces that are ideal to be repurposed into a dedicated space for a hobby, guests, or other passion. In staging, we aim to serve the broadest trends in a given market. But when the home is your castle, we can help you make each room perfect for YOU.
In the end, decorating vs staging is all about the goal of the design: your personal satisfaction, vs buyer enticement. So many people tell us they wish they’d had our help with their home while they were still living there. We’re here to remind you that life passes fast! You deserve to max out the joy you experience in your home while you’re still living there! To get started now, just book a consultation with our decorating team.