Fall Home Decorating Tips

Summer is almost over and fall is on the way here in Raleigh/Durham NC! With that comes cooler temps, shorter days, pumpkin everything (yum!), changing leaves, and also, fall decorating! Here are some ideas to spruce up your space for the season. 


Add Texture

Think velvet, faux fur, and chunky knits. Thick, warm, soft materials such as these bring a coziness to your space. Items such as pillows and throw blankets are an easy, budget friendly way to incorporate texture. Add some woven baskets for stylish storage. 


Similarly to adding texture, make your space cozy and inviting by layering fabrics such as blankets, drapes, pillows and even rugs. Use items with different textures, patterns and coordinating colors for a pop of visual interest.

Incorporate Fall Colors and Patterns

When I think of fall, I think of patterns like plaid and colors like burnt orange, burgundy, gold, forest green and brown. Bring these colors and patterns in to your space through art and accessories, pillows and blankets. Luckily Target, HomeGoods and even Michael’s makes this extra easy on you!


Bring Outdoor Elements In

Glass vases with stems and greenery from the trees outside, pinecones, leaves, and small gourds are perfect to create a fall inspired feel inside your home. The best part is you can find most of this for free in your own yard! Or enjoy a fall scavenger hunt by going on a family walk.

Do you have any fall decorating tips we haven’t mentioned here? Let us know in the comments!

- Kerri

Triangle NC Staycation Ideas

Dorothea Dix Sunflower Fields

Dorothea Dix Sunflower Fields

Summer is coming to a close but people are still heading out of town on vacation. We know this can mean long hours in the car stuck in traffic, flight delays, long lines, and a lot of money spent on hotels and transportation costs. One way to avoid these hassles and to save money is by planning a staycation. There are so many things to do in the triangle that will show you a good time, close to home.

Explore Nature

Consider a staycation focused on Nature. We have so many beautiful parks in the area where you can explore, hike, camp or have a picnic. The American Tobacco Trail, Duke Forest, Eno River State Park, Hemlock Bluffs and Umstead Park are just some of the amazing places to check out. If you want to see animals, consider the NC Zoo in Asheboro, the Duke Lemur Center in Durham, Carolina Tiger Rescue in Pittsboro, or the Aloha Safari Zoo in Cameron.

Aryn enjoying Eno River

Aryn enjoying Eno River

Visit the Museums

With so many museums in the area, you’re sure to find one that everyone enjoys! For the kids, check out the Museum of Life and Science in Durham or Marbles in Raleigh. Also in Raleigh is the North Carolina Museum of Art (my favorite!), the Museum of Natural Sciences, and the Museum of History. If you like art, there is also the Contemporary Art Museum in Raleigh, the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, and the Ackland Art Museum in Chapel Hill. If history is more your thing, visit the Mordecai Historic Park, the Joel Lane Museum House, or the Raleigh City Museum. What a great way to learn while having fun!

Atti and Alvin enjoying the Life & Science Museum

Atti and Alvin enjoying the Life & Science Museum

Check out the Farmers Market

The Raleigh Farmers Market is a great place to get fresh, seasonal produce, cheeses, meats, baked goodies, crafts, candies, soaps, lotions, and N.C. wines. There are about 75 acres to explore here as well as several restaurants. Also be sure to check out some of the smaller town markets for some great items from local artisans and farmers. Pick up a few things and make dinner (and memories) together!

Sasha and Alvin at the Farmers Market

Sasha and Alvin at the Farmers Market

Go Play

Grab the family and go play together at one of the many fun area playgrounds! At Pullen Park in Raleigh, you can have fun on the play equipment or ride the carousel, train, and pedal boats. Bring a picnic lunch to enjoy under one of the shelters. There are also tons of other smaller but fun parks all around Raleigh, Durham, Apex, Cary, etc. Just a few are Kids Together in Cary, Crowder Park in Apex, Sassafras in Raleigh, Burch Ave Park in Durham and so many more! You can also attempt to beat the heat at one of the local splash pads such as Jack Smith Park in Raleigh, Fuquay-Varina Splash Pad, and the Wake Forest Sprayground.

Atti enjoying the tunnel at Brier Creek Playgroun

Atti enjoying the tunnel at Brier Creek Playgroun

What are your favorite places to visit and things to do during a staycation in the Triangle? Let us know in the comments!

Product Review: Nuvo Cabinet Paint

As we mentioned in last month’s blog post, we often tell occupied home staging clients that updating their home will help with the sale. One update that has a big visual impact is the cabinets! Now, I’ve already painted our kitchen cabinets when we moved in. That said, recently I have been eyeing some beautiful navy cabinets on Instagram. Alvin was not on board with painting our kitchen cabinets again (who could blame him?!) but the bathroom cabinets were fair game!

There is this product on Amazon that I recommend to our clients who could benefit from a cabinet update but don’t want to (or can’t afford to) install new cabinets or have them professionally painted. It’s called Nuvo Cabinet Paint. It comes in multiple different colors, all of which are currently popular for cabinets and claims you can complete an entire kitchen in a weekend or less. I went with Oxford Blue for a bold look in our small space.

Nuvo Cabinet Paint.jpg

The kit comes with everything you would need, but I already had a ton of painting tools except the paint so I just ordered the single quart. I used our mouse sander on the old cabinets to give the paint a rough surface to cling to. It’s worth noting that the bathroom cabinets had a laminate surface, which made me a bit nervous that the paint would chip right off. You can see below what we started with.


Luckily, the little bit of sanding I did did the trick! In just an hour we had brand new (looking) cabinets! This includes the time I spent sanding and removing the hardware. The paint dried quickly so I was able to apply the second coat as soon as I finished the first one. Based on this timing, it seems completely reasonable to think you could complete a kitchen in a weekend. I’m also happy to report that it has been several weeks since I completed the painting portion of the project and there have been no chips! Ta-Da!!

Since I wanted a more complete updated look, I also added new cabinet pulls. I ordered these ones from Wayfair and LOVE them. I’ve also added them to Atti’s dresser and our bathroom cabinets. Eventually I will be painting our cabinets with the Nuvo paint as well.

Other updates I’ll slowly chip away at are vanity lights, faucet, and new vinyl tile. These are the ones I’m currently eyeing.

If I were to break the costs down it would be:

  1. Paint: $32 (covers both bathrooms)

  2. Knobs: $1.80 a piece, $3.60 total for this bathroom

  3. Floor Tile: $1.20/sf, ~$20 total for this bathroom

  4. Faucet: $56

  5. Vanity Light: $84

  6. Total: $195.60

Overall, not bad! This is a very budget friendly way to give your cabinets and bathrooms a quick update whether you’re planning on listing your home or loving it!

Preparing Your Home For Sale


The Spring Real Estate market is in full swing! If you’ve been thinking of listing your home, or even just doing some updates, these are the ones that will pay off the most and give you the biggest return on investment.

According to Realtor.com, curb appeal projects add to the overall value of the house more than interior projects. The top curb appeal project? New garage doors, where you can expect to recoup 97.5% of the money spent. After that, the next two are manufactured stone veneer and a wood deck. The reason that these types of projects top the list is because the outside of your home, especially the front, is something everyone will notice, as it’s the first thing they see. Curb appeal is very important and these numbers support that idea. Check out last month’s blog post for more curb appeal tips!

Maintenance items also top the list. Things like new siding, roofing, HVAC, and smaller items such as replacing leaky faucets or ripped screens, are even more important than a fancy new kitchen (even though that is nice as well!). Buyers want to make sure that the home they are looking at is sound, with everything in working order. They don’t want to worry about the important systems failing after they move in, so it is better to take care of everything beforehand and give potential buyers peace of mind.

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As for interior projects, a minor kitchen remodel is the way to go with a return of about 80.5%. A minor remodel is when your space needs a cosmetic update. Instead of creating an entire new kitchen space, minor remodels focus on upgrading what is already there. Things like refacing cabinets and changing dated hardware, installing a new sink and fixtures, and new lighting fall into this category. A basic kitchen remodel gives the outward appearance of a complete overhaul without the added price tag.

Other updates that we often recommend during staging consultations are changing dated light fixtures and freshening up paint (choose a neutral color like a light gray). These smaller projects can often be done yourself, and can have a big impact. What projects are on your to-do list?

DIY Spring Curb Appeal


Now that spring is here, does your home’s exterior need some freshening up? Boost your home’s curb appeal and make a good first impression with these easy weekend projects.

Add Plants and Flowers

One of the easiest and most impactful things you can do is add greenery and flowers to your home’s exterior. Whether it’s adding a garden, some planters or window boxes, these can all freshen up the look of your home. Do your future self a favor and plant native perennials which will be low maintenance and return year after year.

Make Your Front Door Pop

Boost curb appeal by making your front door stand out. Opt for a bold color that coordinates with the other colors on the exterior of your home. Hint: Blue and wooden doors are in this year!

Take Care of Your Lawn

Lawn care is a big part of maintaining curb appeal. Regular mowing, raking, weeding and watering will go a long way in keeping the exterior of your home looking nice.

Add Lighting

A dark entryway isn’t very welcoming. Change out light fixtures for ones that are brighter and fresher. If you need additional light, add string lights or solar powered lights and lanterns. Remember to light the path to your entry as well with some lights along the walkway.

Upgrade Your House Numbers

Quickly and easily update the look of your home by changing out your house numbers. Choose a style that coordinates with the exterior of your home, but is also bold enough to stand out and catch the eye.

Add New Door Hardware

For a quick and noticeable upgrade, replace your door’s existing hardware with something new. Choose something that contrasts with your door’s color, such as nickel hardware on a navy door or black hardware on a yellow door.

Most of these projects are fairly easy and inexpensive, but can go a long way in creating some major curb appeal. What are some of the exterior projects on your list for this spring?