3 Things NOT To Do When Styling Your Home To Sell

Research into home buyer psychology tells us that we have just 30 seconds to make a first impression when selling our home.

So you need to nail the look and feel of your property if you want to sell faster and for more money!

If you want to get prepared before the property stylist comes to perfect your space, here are three things to avoid doing during the process:


A lot of clients tell me that their homes feels comparatively empty when it goes to market. This is where the idea of cosy vs clutter comes in.

It’s often difficult to differentiate between the two when it’s your own home, however it’s essential not to get this one wrong.  The best rule is to try to avoid the “cosy” look when selling your home. Having too many accessories, personal photographs and other items in an attempt to create “cosy” will actually make the property seem cluttered and lose its appeal to the broader market.

Stick to stylish, understated and sophisticated accessories. There’s a fine line though, you don’t want your property to feel cold – but the property stylist can help you bring in warmth with great styling choices.

Living area styled by Naomi Findlay

Not being able to look past your own personal style

This is an area of great concern when you are styling a property for sale. You have to remember that your personal taste is not necessarily that of the market. When selling, you need to appeal to as many people as possible so remember – when you have your home styled for sale it is not about you (I know that hurts but it will help you when you sell, trust me).

This is why bringing a professional in can be the best thing you could do to increase your chances of selling for more.

Keep your styling neutral

Choosing furniture that is the wrong size for your space

The use of furniture that is too big or the wrong shape can drastically affect the way a potential buyer sees your home.  It’s all about scale and making the space feel light and airy. If your bedrooms are small, your choice of furniture could either emphasize the tiny space or completely transform the feeling for a potential buyer.

Your home stager can work with you to choose appropriate furniture if yours is the wrong fit.

Are you a home stager? Want to boost your career? Come to the National Home Staging Symposium! Click below!

How to Create a Gorgeous Vignette

When you work in property styling, knowing how to create gorgeous vignettes is essential!

But what are vignettes? And how can you make them amazing?!

Vignettes are small arrangements of bits and pieces usually placed on coffee tables, book shelves, benches and anywhere that can hold specific items to bring texture and warmth to a space.

The ways in which vignettes are arranged is not random, even though it can look that way. In order to have a successful and aesthetically pleasing vignette, it is necessary for the items used to be specifically picked for a particular reason.

A vignette can be as simple as a small house plant next to a book on a coffee table. These items are commonly used in vignettes because plants are not only aesthetically pleasing but they can also create a positive and calming atmosphere in the area.

Coffee table books are often used in vignettes as they are intriguing and can make guests interested in the overall arrangement of the vignette.

Small artworks, candles and magazines are all used in vignettes to create interest and pleasing aesthetics in an area such as a coffee table.

The idea behind vignettes is that you are able to create your own small artwork that you can change whenever you please.

When styling vignettes it is of utmost importance to ensure that all items used are of different textures, shapes and sizes. While vignettes may seem easy to style, it can be difficult to create an arrangement that makes you and everyone who sees the vignette say “WOW!”.

Using different colours, textures, shapes and sizes that all work together is the most effective way to create an amazing vignette, but it is all about trial and error.

Where you put your vignette can also determine if your vignette works or not as well. A vignette may look awesome on a coffee table, but it may look a little too much on a book shelf. It’s all about figuring out what works best in the space.

If you’ve created a gorgeous vignette, tag @NaomiFindlayOfficial on Instagram and we’ll share it with our audience!

How to Style a Master Bedroom

Styling a master bedroom in a home for sale can be tricky. The majority of time spent here is for sleeping and for this reason, many people have a complacent attitude when it comes to styling the master bedroom.

But the key is the create a space that oozes comfort, tranquility and space. So how do you create a space that attracts buyers?

Read on for my top style tips…

Having a pleasing master bedroom is more than just the mattress. When it comes to putting your house on the market, it’s all about practicality and aesthetics so choose gorgeous pillows, play with different colours and textures, and use light to your advantage.

The bed is the major part of a master bedroom, and is usually the focal point of the room. Simple bedding such as a white cover is best. This can be dressed up with a throw and pillows of a variety of colours.

Not all master bedrooms have a lot of wardrobe space, and buyers will wonder if there is enough room for clothing so consider adding stylish clothes rails and a chest of draws to showcase alternative storage solutions. As long as the furniture is scaled to suit the size of the room, it shouldn’t look crowded and can in fact make the space feel complete.

Lighting is another key feature that is of utmost importance in the master bedroom. Natural light is always a plus, but it is understandable that this is not always  available.

Downlights, side table lamps, tall feature lamps and candles are all great ways to make the room feel more comforting and, most importantly, makes sure the room is well light.

Accessories and art are also great ways to make the room shine and add interest without deterring buyers.

We have scattered some of our favourite master bedrooms below! As you can see, there is no strict formula when it comes to decorating the master bedroom but all designs contain the features mentioned above.

What is your favourite master bedroom?



The Pros of Open Plan Spaces

Open plan living spaces are a phenomenon in the architecture industry, and so they should be!

They bring people together and can be used as a space for everyone instead of leaving set activities in set rooms like the kitchen.

Here are our Top 5 Pros of open plan living spaces in the home.

1. They create flow

Unlike in older houses where the dining  and living rooms are clearly separated, open plan living spaces allow you to flow more easily through the home.

This is due to the lack of walls between the kitchen, living and dining rooms and also your ability to implement your design choices with more purpose to ensure that each space flows by connecting to each other.

2. They feel bigger

Open plan living spaces can make the whole house seem bigger! They open up the space and bring light in, giving the illusion of a bigger space.

3. Perfect for entertaining

Open plan living spaces are also great for entertaining purposes. Instead of being locked away in the kitchen while all your friends are chatting in the lounge room, open plan living spaces allow you to be part of the conversation as well. These spaces often open out onto a deck or outdoor area. This allows for optimum entertaining, regardless of rain or shine.

4. Perfect for a family

On a more personal note, open plan living spaces can bring the family together, both physically and metaphorically, as it allows space for kids to play and do homework as well as space for the parents to do work, cook dinner and entertain.

5. You can create better design

Because open plan living blurs the lines between living room and dining room, it allows for a much wider variety of furnishings, accessories and overall design theme in the home. Some designs can look crowded and overdone if they are shoved into a small room. Open plan living allows for continuity of design and theme throughout the majority of the house and allow you to fully invest in a style that you love!

Want to boost your career in home staging and learn from experts in your industry? Attend the BIGGEST home staging event in the country at the 2019 National Home Staging Symposium! Spots filling FAST – save your seat here! 

How to Hang Art in a Home for Sale

Art is one of the greatest ways to give homebuyers a vision when they walk into a property!

They may visualise their existing home decorations, be inspired by new colours and consider how to improve their own style and ideas.

But the way you present your wall art can make or break the impact it has on the buyer – and as many of you know, attention to detail is of utmost importance when staging your house to be sold.

So what are the 4 key things to remember when you are hanging wall art?

how to hang art

1. Keep artwork in scale with the space

The biggest mistake most people make is hanging a picture that’s too small for the space. If you put a page-sized portrait on an expansive wall, it will be totally lost and ignored. To figure out how large a picture to hang on your wall, measure the width of the space (say, the area between two windows) and multiply that number by .57. The result is the ideal width of the painting you should centre in that space. This bit of arithmetic is based on decorators’ tried-and-true proportions, but you of course have a little leeway. You can also group smaller photos together to reach this number — just be sure to account for additional spacing between each.

2. Hang artwork at eye level

Many people hang their pictures too high on the wall, thinking that there’s a lot of space to fill toward the ceiling. Not so! The centre of your artwork should be at eye level of the average person — (roughly 175cm).  The one exception is with lettered signs, which are typically designed to be seen from a distance and can therefore be hung higher than eye level if you like.


how to hang art


3. Make sure your art is lit correctly

Be conscious of the lighting around your artwork. Some art will only shine when light dances onto its surface in the correct way so ensure you investigate the light from windows and any artificial sources.  Also be wary the beauty or detail of your favourite piece doesn’t get lost if it’s catching some rays.

4. Use art to accentuate the room

If you have beautiful tall ceilings, use art to draw your eyes upwards by hanging one piece on top of the other, rather than the more traditional way of side by side. Use ornate detail to embellish or highlight art pieces, and vice versa. Choose art that brings out the best of the room, and can help mask the less inspiring elements of a room.

If you stick to these four simple rules, you’re sure to be pleased with how your works of art transform the walls and ‘wow’ potential homebuyers.

Want to boost your career in home staging and learn from experts in your industry? Attend the BIGGEST home staging event in the country at the 2019 National Home Staging Symposium! Spots filling FAST – save your seat here! 

2019 Scholarships – Apply NOW!

IIHS™ are so excited to announce our annual Student Scholarships. The scholarships will grant one successful applicant a kick start in the home staging career like no other and a second applicant a chance to be mentored by IIHS™ Principal Naomi Findlay.



There are two separate scholarships available, a course education scholarship and a mentoring scholarship

The successful applicant:

Course Education Scholarship

Will be given the opportunity to study the Art of Home Staging and Advanced Home Staging Courses with IIHS™ and the enrolment fees will be covered by IIHS™. As well as 6 months worth of Shine Professional membership with IIHS™. Total value well over $2400

Mentoring Scholarship

Will be given the opportunity to be part of the IIHS mentoring program for three month value $3000 and be a member of the IIHS™ Shine Professional Membership for a six month period valued at $300. Total Value $3300

See what previous winner Skye Mendl had to say…..


Applications will open on March 1 2019.

Applications will close on May 20 2019.

Attendees to the National Home Staging Symposium will be eligible to apply. Get your event tickets here! Scholarship application forms will be sent out with the ticket confirmation email.

To find out more about the scholarships email [email protected]

Return the completed form to [email protected]