Monthly Archives: January 2014

De-Cluttering is the Perfect Winter Project for Cold Days

Closet organizer

Closet organizer

closet 8

We’ve made it through the holidays. Décor is now back in storage until next year. Holiday Décor just seems so warm and welcoming – putting it away is so sad. If you are anything like me, once everything is away, you start looking for things to do. With the weather so cold outside, indoor projects hold the most appeal. Whether you are thinking of selling your home this coming spring/summer or just want some productive projects to fill the long winter days, this is the perfect time to de-clutter.

One of the first things Stagers tell our clients is “de-clutter, de-clutter, de-clutter!” When you list your home – all closets, cupboards and storage areas are under scrutiny by the buyer. In many cases, Buyers have outgrown their existing home and need something with more storage. Ensuring your storage areas are clean, well-organized and de-cluttered is critical to making a great impression. Even if you are not planning on selling, organizing your storage space is a huge time saver as the busy months of summer and spring roll around.

To make it a simple task that can be completed in a short period of time, choose small projects. Start with something like the infamous kitchen “junk drawer”. Take 20-30 minutes and empty it out see what you need and use and what you don’t. It’s simple but feels so good when you are done. It’s so much easier to find things, you’ll be thrilled and motivated to move on to the next project.

Closets are a huge issue. If you have young children, you know how quickly they outgrow their clothes. Seems I’m constantly going through drawers and closets and sorting out the “too short/small” pile. I’m certain Canadian Diabetes has gotten to know me on a first name basis over the years! As children grow, their storage needs change. Consider investing in a closet organizer. Some organizing systems can start at $100 – $150 and can literally seem to double the amount of storage space in the same closet! This isn’t just for children. Many clients complain that they simply do not have enough storage space in their closets.  When I installed a closet organizer in our master bedroom, I was amazed at the additional storage space! It was a great excuse for my wardrobe to expand….lol! So pick one closet for a day and have some fun! Then move on to the next project the following week.

Cupboards are often over looked when we de-clutter. How many times do we have to remove items we rarely, if ever, use, just to find the ones we want? Cupboards are hugely important if you are selling. Kitchen and bathroom storage can make or break a deal. I have a simple rule. If I haven’t used it in the last 2 years, I don’t need it! This helps keep the clutter in my house to a minimum. 

Finally, how do we deal the sentimental items? I haven’t used it but “so and so” gave it/ made it for me and it’s special. I have children. Even though my oldest daughter is 18 and in University, I can still see my little pony tailed blond cutie happily running off the bus to bring me her latest art project. I found one yesterday as I was de-cluttering. Visions of my smiling girl were instantaneous. However, I do have an extensive collection of school treasures I keep in her “trunk”. These were special that had meaning for her and/or me. I do not have to keep every painting or coloring picture. So the first question I ask is “Is it special?” not really – then it can be re-cycled. If ever in doubt – ask the person who gave it to you. You may be surprised by the response “you actually still have that old thing? NO, I don’t mind if you recycle/ give it away.” If it is still important, then find a nice storage place where it can be accessible if/when required. After all that de-cluttering, you’re sure to find space somewhere. 

Once I’ve de-cluttered, I always divide the items into 3 piles. One is garbage, no one will use it; the other is give away, someone may use it; and the final is garage sale. We all know how Winnipeggers’ love their garage sales! So use this down time wisely, and you’ll find you’ll have a fabulous garage sale come spring! Maybe make enough from the garage sale to buy some of those fabulous closet organizers! Happy De-cluttering!!

Pantone Announces Radiant Orchid as the 2014 Color of the Year

radiant orchid

radiant orchid

The Pantone 2012 Color of the Year was, “Tangerine Tango” – hence the influx of corals and lovely reddish oranges. The 2013 Pantone Color of the Year was Emerald. Emerald is radiant, lively, and lush:  “A color of elegance & beauty that enhances our sense of wellbeing, balance and harmony.” How did we go from these to purple? 

According to the Pantone Press Release, “Radiant Orchid is a captivating, magical, enigmatic purple…it reaches across the color wheel to intrigue the eye and spark the imagination said Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute. An invitation to innovation, Radiant Orchid encourages expanded creativity and originality, which is increasingly valued in today’s society…An enchanting harmony of fuchsia, purple, and pink undertones, Radiant Orchid inspires confidence and emanates great joy, love, and health. It is a captivating purple that draws you in with its beguiling charm.”

How exactly do the experts determine the Color of the Year? I had the exceptional privilege of attending a color seminar by Leatrice Eiseman this past weekend in Toronto. One of the leading color experts in the world, her expert color knowledge is only exceeded by her extensive Fortune 500 client list! It was a fabulous seminar that educated and surprised me.

The experts watch emerging trends in all aspects of society, all around the world. The technology sector has become an industry to watch. New technology releases and prototypes in this field often incorporate color. These colors are then cross referenced with other more obvious industries like the fashion world. What is happening on the different catwalks in Paris, Milan, New York and other “trend setting fashion shows”? The color experts are there watching for the next eye catching color! Then we zip over to the automotive industry. Ever notice the wild colors on the prototype cars? These influence the color trends we see in other aspects of our society – there was a prototype car painted in radiant orchid!  Combine this with one of the most influential industries, the entertainment industry, and we have our trend setters to watch! Anyone seen the Hunger Games? Remember the furniture designs and bright colors we saw in the elite society? That is exactly what we are being influenced by. 

How exactly do you incorporate Radiant Orchid in your décor? According to Leatrice you can “…spruce up interiors by using Radiant Orchid in paint, accent pieces, or accessories. As adaptable as it is beautiful, Radiant Orchid compliments olive and deeper hunter greens, and offers a gorgeous combination when paired with turquoise, teal, and even light yellows…It is sure to liven up neutrals including gray, taupe, and beige. Uplifting and bold without being overpowering, Radiant Orchid re-energizes almost any color palette and provides a unifying element for diverse spaces”. 

If you are looking for that small bit of change; something to refresh a tired space, maybe head out and look for some radiant orchid accessories and décor. I am a strong believer in the psychological effects of color and most people I know could benefit from a color that inspires confidence and emanates great joy, love, and health! Happy Shopping!

http://www.pantone.com/pages/index.aspx?pg=21129

Balance in Life and Business…

Balance

Happy New Year everyone!!  As the New Year begins many of us spend some time evaluating the old year and what we can improve on for the coming year. Many of us make resolutions or set new goals for the coming year. Goals are a very important part of knowing where you are going and how exactly you intend on arriving there. I’m a huge fan of Brian Tracy.  I have full collection of his work. However, I will be the first to admit that “life” takes over my good intentions and before I know it …. “Poof”! There goes another year! Sound familiar to anyone?

For as long as I can remember I have been referred to as an “over achiever”. My family doc has called me a “type A” personality for years.  Various personality quizzes for business have labelled me as “driver”  “action oriented” and “analytical doer”. To a degree, they are all right. I am very action oriented and goals are a huge part of those plans. When I decide I want something – it’s not a matter of if – just when!  Just ask my husband!  Kevin knows better than anyone – when I have a goal in mind, just let me do my thing! Life is much easier for everyone that way! Especially him – lol!

However, over the last few weeks of introspection and self-analysis, inevitable at this time of year, I had a huge awakening. Although it is critical to have goals and know where you are going and how you plan on getting there, balance is the key to ultimate success! Balance is a new word for me. I have a tendency to go all or nothing. If it needs to get done – I am your gal – what’s the deadline? I’ll make it work! It’s just now occurring to me – that everything comes at a price. The old ying and yang theory! When I agree to place others priorities above my own, I make others happy, but sacrifice my own and unintentionally create stress for myself and those around me. This is completely my responsibility and totally at my discretion to change. One of the most beautiful aspects of the human condition – we ARE ultimately in control of our own lives! That reality can haunt you if you do not want to make changes or are stuck in a rut – or it can be totally liberating! In my case it’s wonderfully liberating! Blissful freedom!  Ahhhh…

I am my own worst enemy. I always push too hard and lose myself in everyday demands of life and work. Within a few months, my goals are not forgotten but have been delegated 2nd place to new pressing priorities. So this year I decided I will do something different. I will still write down my goals for 2014. I will still review my goals daily. However, I will include the word balance in each goal. Balance is a scale of constant fluctuation. Sometimes it goes up as circumstances require, but then it’s entirely up to us to take the necessary steps to bring the scale down, back to that state of equilibrium. 

I recognize life and business will get crazy and hectic from time to time, after all that is life! This year I will allow myself to incorporate that as part of my goals. My first challenge for the coming year will be to bring back a state of balance after the tsunami, then calmly carry on my merry little way to working on goals in a predictable and consistent manner. 

The second part is ensuring that I consciously choose to allow those things priority. The choice is mine. Rather than being caught up in the moment and going along with things – take a step back, and take a moment to take a deep breath. Ask is this something I can say “no” to? Ask is this what I really want? What are the consequences going to be?  How can I mitigate the consequences? Can I delegate to someone else? Is it worth the reward?  Then proceed with a “yes” or “no”. 

I know I am not alone in allowing others priorities to overtake my goals and good intentions. So my challenge to my readers is this “Will you add the understanding of balance to your goals? Forgive yourself when you get sidetracked, but understand that you will from time to time and that’s okay.  But balance allows you to take up where you left off without guilt, or stress.  After all, balance is all about staying out of the extremes!”

Wishing you all the best 2014 can offer you!

Angie Kendel

Maximum Impact Plus

Home Staging & Interior Decorating

Winnipeg, MB