stage this kitchen

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Objects May Appear Greener Than They Actually Are (thanks to the iphone)

Many thanks are due to Shannan Riemer, a fantastic—so good at both what she does and what she doesn’t do; your basic all-star—realtor in Austin, who’d suggested I organize my cookbooks (and closet) by color.

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Espresso “Station”
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Shrimp Roll with Cracked Pepper Potato Chips


  1. Love your kitchen, just wish there was more color. A bright red mixer, a bowl of citrus or apples, a fun colored cookie jar, flowers (not white), a plant, etc. Or maybe I am missing the mark and potential buyers all want cream and beige.

  2. I love the kitchen, it as fine as is.. BUT, I would definitely get some peonies or other flowers in there to brighten it up!!

  3. Take everything off the counters including the toaster and the espresso station. Buyers want to see tons of counter space and the appliances hog up valuable real estate. Glad you took the couch out of the kitchen, but the replacement is no better. Get a bench and make it a window seat if you must put something there. Shelving is all good.

  4. Why don’t you just hire a professional to do this ‘staging’ for you? Cut to the chase. This ‘serialized’ staging is annoying I missed the old GT blog! This is boring. It’s like I knew I was a grown up when i went to parties where people whinged about remodeling and refinancing. *shoots self, not before emptying the host’s last wine bottle*.

  5. The small table looks crowded with all that stuff on it. I’d maybe put a small vase of flowers, or two small place settings (cups?). Or a small bowl of something. “small”

    Flowers or a bowl of lemons and limes or some other pop of color would be good in rest of kitchen. Are you no longer living there?

    1. Author

      We will not be living in it, so I cannot have live fruits or flowers for staging. Basically, come July 1, we will be in Florida. So, now it is up to me to set uP each room–which is time consuming in such a short time (plus packing!). But we just sent in our security deposits and membership dues, so it’s becoming more real… With more to do, for real.

  6. You must be exhausted!! Best of Luck with the staging/ packing/move/swimming lessons/ multiple arrangements!! Hopefully your writing can be on hold for a while.

  7. I would add a small rug on one side of the island. If you don’t want to invest in a nice one, you could get a throw rug or a fake oriental.

    Also, I agree with Jennifer, in that the counters are too cluttered. The cookbook and the pepper grinder is kind of randomly pretentious. Get rid of both.

    Holy cabinet space!

    1. Wow, the claws are out in the comment section! “Randomly pretentious?” Really? Because it’s a nice quality pepper grinder and a gourmet recipe? Because, uh, if I’m not mistaken here, this is a pretty high-end house overall. She’s not trying to pander to first-time home buyers fresh out of the trailer park or anything. The kind of people who would be looking at this house would not, I assume, find a gourmet cookbook and a nice pepper grinder out of place in a KITCHEN, where, you know, you COOK.

      This room looks great, Stephanie. Those who think the counters are “cluttered” (huh?) or that the nook doesn’t look perfect need to chill out and realize that you are staging a house for SALE, not for a magazine shoot! Even so, it looks pretty darn close to magazine shoot-ready, anyway. Leave the chairs and little table, I think it gives the right idea! Although I’m actually a person who would put something like the loveseat you had in that same kind of spot–maybe more of a settee, but same idea. Because there’s a big dining room right next door, and I’d love a spot for people to settle in comfortably near where I’m cooking.

  8. I think it looks great, but I agree some more color would be a welcome addition. You have so much color on those open shelves around the fridge, but it’s lacking in the rest of the kitchen. BTW, I LOVE this direction for your blog for the time being. I love peeking into other’s homes and I love being asked for advice on the staging. So people who don’t like it should just suck it, this is your life right now, right? ;)

    Have you thought about fake fruits? I’m not a big fan of fake flowers, but I’ve seen fake fruit so real I almost bit into it.

  9. That shelving around the fridge makes it one hell of a dream kitchen! My only suggestion is that the shelving on the left looks “heavier” than the shelving on the right, so I might play around with the order of the shelving to make it more visually pleasing – I see the built-ins aren’t equal in size but would see if where books are on the left, they can also be on the right?

    I know you’re leaving for good, but is there a neighbor who could come buy once or twice a week to water an orchid or something? I think that table with the book & pepper mill might be better if it’s free of Stuff save for one small plant.

  10. I think the people who say your counters are too cluttered are insane. The kitchen needs to look like part of a home, which means there has to be some indication that it is lived in. I like the espresso machine and the cook book with pepper grinder. I also like the little coffee corner you set up, but I agree that there is too much on the table. I would take the book off, since it doesn’t fit. Just leave the french press and pastry basket.

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