September 2014


Embracing the Value of Staging  
Stay or Sell?  Buyers Are Investing  
in Home Improvements
Fall Color Swatch

While the hot weather continues throughout most of the East Coast, and especially in our own backyard here in Connecticut, September is here and bringing with it a variety of changes. The biggest personal change for my husband and I are that we are now empty nesters. After helping my daughter through months of dorm shopping (raspberry, teal, and black and white polka dots is her color scheme), I find myself looking at new beginnings both personally and professionally. It is surprisingly exciting.
As you read this issue of The Style Report, you may notice there is a "new style" to our monthly newsletter. We have redesigned our logo (featured on the masthead), have changed the name of our company to PJ & Company Staging and Interior Decorating to showcase our core services , and we are working on a redesign to our website which will launch at the end of this month. We also are adding to the PJ & Company team as we welcome Pam Bingman as a marketing associate. It is thanks to Pam that we have an updated, modern logo design and an overall new look to our newsletter. More about Pam next month.
Also new this month is a home renovation project we completed for a client. We started in April with a custom mud room, followed by two bathroom remodels, a gorgeous custom deck, and finished with a redesigned kitchen that we offer a peak at in this issue. And the best part of the project was working with this incredible couple who let us into their home to create their vision for these spaces. We also feature another special client who truly embraced the value and art of staging making our work even more enjoyable.
We have been seeing a lot of home renovations these past few months that according to a recent Houzz survey will continue throughout the year. The Houzz Survey also indicated that when it comes to decorating a home, many choose to turn to design professionals for help. Of those hiring a professional for their project, 33 percent plan to hire an interior designer or decorator to help them from start to finish. Another 32 percent said they would seek a few hours of consultation. More on the survey is featured in this issue. 

As we begin the Fall season I wish you all happy new beginnings and colorful style inspiration!

Patti Stern, Principal, PJ & Company Staging and Interior Decorating


Many sellers are reluctant to stage. They are emotionally attached to their home, which is decorated based on their personal style and taste. But, there is a big difference between decorating and staging to appeal to a large pool of buyers. So when I meet a client who embraces staging and allows us to completely transform their home to get it staged and sold it's incredibly rewarding. Chris and Jackie are those clients.


Chris and Jackie are a delightful, retired couple who recently married and built a new home together. Chris had already sold his home and now he was helping Jackie ready her Wethersfield, CT home for sale. At our first staging consultation at Jackie's home, she was actively organizing and packing. She and Chris were very much on board to stage this property as they were well informed and had experienced first hand how staging is an investment in getting a home sold timely and for top dollar.


After the initial consultation I recommended staging and d�cor updates to allow buyers to focus on the wonderful architectural details and square footage of the property and not be distracted by the decor. My staging plan included removing dated wallpaper and painting in modern neutrals, replacing heavy draperies, and ripping up the wall-to-wall carpeting to reveal beautiful hardwood floors.


"Today's buyers have high expectations. They are influenced by what they see on HGTV," says realtor  Mary Jean Agostini, Realty 3 Mitchel Agency, one of the seller's agents. "Mismatched furnishings or certain colors make it difficult for buyers today to see themselves living in the house. Unfortunately they don't have a lot of vision. Staging is like giving a home a face lift and buyers will appreciate when a home is nicely presented and move in ready. It takes the burden off them to figure out where things should go and paves the way for us to be able to showcase the home and get it sold. I wish we could stage every single house."


Not only did this staged home receive rave reviews but it sold in 15 days!   According to many local realtors, homes in this town are typically on the market at least 45 days.  


"We are all very pleased with the updates to the home. It makes us wish we lived like that all the time. It's a look we all want to achieve - almost like museum quality," adds Agostini. 


"How a house is staged is not how you will live in the house. Staging helps a potential buyer envision themselves living there. It's about how someone else might want to live in it." shared Jackie after the home sold.  


Before/After photos of Wethersfield, CT staged home by PJ & Company Staging and 

Interior Decorating. This property sold in 16 days!





Many homeowners across the country are opting to stay versus sell, choosing to invest in improvements that will make them fall in love with their own home again.
Remodeling spending has been strong the past two years with many would-be sellers finding themselves choosing to renovate or remodel instead of moving. In fact, according to a Houzz survey fifty-three percent of U.S. homeowners say they will remodel in the next one to two years, to increase the value of their home, even though they have no plans of moving in the next five years.


The decision to sell versus stay is one most homeowners will make several times throughout their lives. For some, like our recent clients, Ellen and Andrew, the choice is easy - they love their home and property but wanted to make some modern updates and enlisted our help in achieving the look they wanted.


We renovated several areas of this elegant Cheshire home, including the kitchen. 
We transformed the space from start to finish, and the final reveal below shows a modern, stylish space the homeowner's will enjoy for years to come. We balanced today's trends with practical features and styling that hit the mark, achieving the homeowner's vision for their 
ideal kitchen. 


This large kitchen style was reminiscent of the early 90's.





The kitchen was transformed into our client's vision which included clean lines, classic subway tiles, and custom stone tile that provide a natural organic look and the kitchen's focal point. Industrial style pendant lighting is coupled with trend setting quartz countertops that provide both a custom appeal along with durability. 

Thinking of renovating? Understanding the cost vs value on several remodeling projects will help you make a smart choice.  


Read our article highlighting Remodeling Magazine's Cost vs Value Report HERE.


Throughout the year we love the opportunity each change of season brings to refresh 

one's home d�cor.

Cognac Wall Color for Fall


We continue to embrace the versatility neutral hues offer as the foundation of a room's color palette. Cognac, a warm brown, is a beautiful choice for fall and a versatile canvas for accessories and accents from pillows to throws and curtains. Contrasted with white and ecru creates rich, modern style and for fall we are embracing warm, rich accent hues inspired by nature. Golds and yellows, orange and red hues offer a seasonal pop of color throughout a home.











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or contact us at 203-640-3762.

The Style Report is PJ & Company Staging and Interior Decorating's
e-newsletter designed to inform, entertain, and engage our clients, colleagues, friends, and other style followers about topics in interior design, fashion, 
and special events.  


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