This week I had the honor of interviewing Jillian Summers, RESA Member and owner of Upstaging Homes. A talented designer who’s personal style is the perfect mixture of modern and shabby chic, Jillian gave me a look inside her home and shared some of the things that keep her inspired. Jillian also shared some of her favourite home staging projects. Read on to see what Jillian had to say. – Crystal Williams
Jillian at Home
Have you always had an interest in home decor?
Yes, I have always loved design. Every since I was a young girl I would spend my spare time with my parents looking at model homes and going through open houses. My mom has a great gift in styling her home and it is my passion. I couldn’t imagine doing anything other than interior design and home staging.
How would you describe your personal decor style?
My style is a bit of a mixture of modern and a little shabby chic. I love the comfort of linen fabrics and throws and the monochromatic colour scheme but I love the clean lines and minimalist characteristics of the modern look. I tend to mix these styles together in my own home.
What one room in your home would you say is your favorite and why?
My favourite room in my house is my living room. I love to sit by the fire and curl up on the sofa. I love the clean look of the white walls. The rustic look of the coffee table is one of my favourite finds in 2012. I just love how it mixes with the modern sofa. I love to combine old with new!!
If you could have a designer come into your home, who would you pick and why?
I would love to have Sarah Richardson come into my home. I just love her work!
If you could pick one piece in your home that would be your favorite, what would it be?
The most treasured piece in my home is my photo wall. It has been a work in progress for over a year now. The photos consist of my family pictures but they are taken in such a way that they don’t appear to be family photos. They are very artistic and are displayed all in black and white in various sizes of frames. I love how I can still have photos of my family but it suits my modern taste. The photos were taken by my boyfriend who is an artist which is why they are so artistic. It is almost complete, only a few more frames to go.
Jillian on Home Trends & Inspiration
Where do you find inspiration?
I love looking in decorating magazines. I love Pinterist. I find so many awesome things there also.
What current home decor trends do you love?
I love the look for 2013 of the tufted backs on chairs and sofas with small wheels on the legs. The monochromatic scheme is my favourite.
What are your five favorite websites/blogs for design inspiration right now?
I use several different sites, Facebook, Pinterest, Google, HGTV and many more.
Jillian at Work
How did you get involved in the Home Staging industry?
I have wanted to start my own Home Staging business for many, many years. I finally just took the plunge. I took some courses and jumped in with both feet. I had faith that following my passion was the right path for me.
Can you share before and after photos of one or two of your favorite staging projects and tell us a little about them?
The first set of pictures are of an interior design job that I did for a client of mine. It is one of my favourites! The living room and dining room were both empty and I was hired to paint, furnish etc. both rooms.
The second is of a vacant staging job that we had staged for a realtor.
What is the biggest thing you have learned about design as a home stager?
Selling a home is one of the most stressful things people can go through. Interior design and staging are very different and this is something that most people don’t understand. Less is more for staging.
What is your favourite part of the staging process?
My favourite part of the staging process is the dramatic before and after photos. When I hear that the house has sold asap that makes me so happy for my agents and clients. It is very rewarding to help people in one of the most stressful times in their lives. It is stressful for people to move for various reasons and I love being able to ease the stress for them.
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