Archive for the ‘Inspiration’ Category

Simple Tips for Using Feng Shui In Your Home

Wednesday, July 21, 2021
Debbi DiMaggio

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A tower of stones representing balance and harmony

If you’ve ever considered implementing a more spiritual approach to life, you’ve likely heard about feng shui. While these two words ring a bell in many people’s minds, most are unsure about their meaning. Feng shui translates to wind and water. This ancient Chinese philosophy is supposed to aid in creating harmony and inviting positive energy to flow through our living spaces. To achieve this, one must practice mindfulness and pay attention to details. However, without knowing a few basic principles and the reasoning behind them, it’s unlikely you will feel the benefits. To help you deepen your connection to the world around you, here are 6 simple tips for using feng shui in your home.

Start with your entryway

According to feng shui, your home’s entryway and front door represent a connection to the outside world. This is where new energy enters your life, so it’s easy to understand why you should pay special attention to this part of your home.

To keep the flow of good energy uninterrupted, start by decluttering the entry. Get rid of anything that doesn’t serve a purpose, and make sure to keep this area clean and tidy at all times.

Your entryway should be clean, well-light and tidy.

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Don’t forget to give some TLC to your front door and doormat as well. Doors play an essential role in feng shui; therefore, make sure they are clean and squeak-free.

Lastly, to brighten up the area, consider adding more light fixtures or brighter lightbulbs.

Create balance with colors

An easy and effective way to apply feng shui principles in your home is through colors. It’s widely known that colors have the power to influence our mood and emotions. However, according to this philosophy, they are even more mighty than that. It is believed that you can invite more of what you need into your life by using different colors in your home. Whether you want to refresh your current home or are thinking about a color scheme for your future property, here’s what you need to know:

  • Yellow, orange, and brown represent Earth. Use them if you want to be more grounded and centered on a physical and spiritual level.
  • Red represents fire. It is believed to ignite passion and increase energy.
  • Green symbolizes wood. It promotes harmony, good family relationships, and growth.
  • Black signifies water. Use it if you need to improve and expand relationships with friends and gain more wisdom.
  • Gray represents metal. Include more of it to invite more exploration, creative thinking, and support into your life.

Put your furniture in the commanding position

The commanding position affects how you position yourself in life. To put your furniture in the commanding position and thus gain more control over your life, you want to place it so that you can see the door while using it. However, avoid being directly in line with it. A diagonal position is best.

According to feng shui, you should be able to see the door while in your bed.

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Even though this is a powerful feng shui method, there is no need to do this will all of your furniture. Instead, focus on your bed, desk, and stove. These pieces are essential as they represent you (bed), your career (desk), and your wealth (stove). If the structure of your house doesn’t allow you to apply this tip, don’t worry. Placing a mirror so that you can see the door in it while using these pieces of furniture will do the trick.

Create space by decluttering

One of the best tips for using feng shui in your home is to stay on top of decluttering. Clutter takes up space and thus prevents anything new and fresh from entering your life. By downsizing on your possessions and keeping only the things that serve a purpose, you will create a happier and healthier living environment.

Although not many people enjoy the process, downsizing is essential for many reasons. These reasons are even more significant if you are moving into a new home. By decluttering, you will have fewer things to transport, which is critical, especially if you are planning a long-distance move. Therefore, to ensure a relocation handled with ease, a lower bill from your long-distance movers, and plenty of good feng shui in your new home, start letting go!

Invite life energy by adding plants

In feng shui, plants represent life energy. By adding a little bit of the outdoors into your humble abode, you will ensure a better connection to nature and increase vitality and freshness. According to feng shui, the more water a plant requires, the better. Some good options include chrysanthemum, orchid, bamboo, lotus, and narcissus.

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You can almost never go wrong with plants.

If you can, consider placing the plants on top of your kitchen cabinets. If the cabinets don’t reach the ceiling, negative energy (and dust) can collect in the empty space, which you can easily avoid with a bit of greenery.

However, remember that dying plants can have the opposite effect. Before you go shopping, research which plants can thrive in the environment your home provides.

Maximize natural light

Windows, much like doors, are essential for good feng shui. They represent the residents’ eyes. If they are dirty, you won’t be able to see things clearly. Therefore, remember to keep them clean at all times.

Additionally, clean windows let in more light which is an essential source of energy. Maximize the amount of natural light in your home by adding light curtains or drapes. If you are planning to move, team up with a reliable Realtor, and tell them you’d prefer a home with plenty of big windows. Sometimes you don’t have control over how much light your house gets, so make sure to supplement it with light fixtures, lamps, and chandeliers.

In conclusion

Even if you were skeptical about this Chinese philosophy, after reading this list of 6 simple tips for using feng shui in your home, you probably realize that it is much less esoteric and more logical than it seems. Feng shui is all about balance, harmony, peace, and prosperity. Therefore, even if you are still not convinced, give it a try! What’s the worst that can happen?

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From Drab to Fab, Re-Designed to Stay

Monday, February 3, 2020
Debbi DiMaggio

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Selling homes is what I do, love to do, and have done for over 30 years, and what has transpired by default, if you will, is become pretty good at design.  Each year we bring about 20 homes to market, and in doing so I provide a complimentary service to each of our clients, I call them mini makeovers, some, not so mini, they can be fairly significant.

Renovating a home is one of the many aspects of the home selling process I love most.  I am now offering my clients and you, my newest service, Designed To Stay, rather than Designed To Sell.  Here is what my team and I can do for future clients interested in maximizing the enjoyment of their home.

Below this home had carpet, black painted wood hand railings, carpet, a granite fireplace and green walls. The BEFORE photo shows Phase 1. carpet, white railings and neutral walls, and the granite removed. AFTER: In order to create a more open loft like environment the railings were removed to open up the room, the room painted bright white and bleached white hardwood floors installed. What you can’t see is that the walls were not flat, they had that ugly sprayed on texture representative of a bad apartment. It took two crews, the first crew did not do a great job of removing the texture, so crew two had to come in and continue the sanding until the walls were truly flat. I must say it makes a huge difference.

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What I do:

Planning I begin with a walk through, assessing the property and home with a keen eye. What I scrutinize: curb appeal, gardens, walkways, light fixtures, paint, floors, carpet, appliances, hardware, rooms and bathrooms, fireplace, electrical, furnace, the basement and, finally, the foundation. I inquire about systems you cannot easily see like the roof and the sewer. I take it all in, commit to memory, and visualize a plan. Window washing, a detailed cleaning and staging are the finishing touches after we complete the mini, or not so mini, makeover.

Paint, I can’t say enough about paint.

Debbi DiMaggio - Piedmont CA Homes - 04Estates Editorial Spreads - 16Estates Editorial Spreads - 08From drab to fab!

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Removing window coverings is usually one of the first things we do. And paint, wow, paint goes a long way to beautifying an indoor space as it does the exterior.

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Choosing fabulous light fixtures is another inexpensive touch. Of course it can me expensive, depending on your pocket book.

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Preparation Whether we are working on the transformation together, or should you decide to do it on your own, obtaining bids is the next step. I have a team of amazing service providers who will meet with me at a moment’s notice, so I am able to line up everyone over a one or two-day period in order to obtain our estimates. Upon receiving the bids, I then sit down with my client and review … We discuss budget and how much, if all, of the recommendations we implement. Then we prioritize, together.

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Transformation A commitment from the homeowner and attention to detail is critical as there is much work involved. The client must be available to approve or disapprove of choices. I will project manage and offer choices. Ideally I do that up front so we can make the transition quick and seamless since most often our re design clients will be living in their homes. ( A timely vacation is always an ideal option during this time. ) I have many wonderful service provider partners who will work with me to create an environment you will want to say, “instead of going out for drinks, come over to my house.”
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I love the process and even more so the results. From “Lived In” to “Staged to Stay”, the transformation is exciting each and every time.

So, from LIVED IN to Staged To Stay, or Lived In to Staged to Sell, give me a call. I look forward to creating an environment so wonderful you’ll fall in love with your home all over again.

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XOXO Debbi

PS. So where will you vacation?

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Favorites come in 5’s

Friday, January 3, 2020
Debbi DiMaggio
Styled Stock Photos for Instagram and Social Media, Flatlays, Social Squares from the SC Stockshop

I can’t watch a movie, read a book or flip through a magazine without focusing on the words, the images and the design. I am always seeing something deeper, my mind begins to wander, just like it did this afternoon as I was flipping through the pages of Elle Decor. Within the first few pages I was inspired once again to pick up my laptop, begin to dream, Blog, and share. While watching a movie I can become distressed just trying to fathom how an actor can memorize lines while feeling the passion of what they are saying. How do they do that? Sifting through a magazine I am mesmerized by the beauty and simplicity of a well placed objects on a coffee table, the layout of a room or if I love or dislike a light fixture. And when reading a book I oftentimes re read as my mind wanders I have to pull myself back… did it really say that? did I misread it, or wow, that was an amazing passage. How did the author weave those words together so brilliantly? Or if let’s say they are writing about a place I love, like Nantucket or the Hamptons, the book will transcend me back. Who knows, maybe your mind wanders too. Sometimes I wish I could just turn it off, my mind that is, and simply watch to experience what’s in front of me. Then again, if it’s truly a great piece, it will, and it has. Any great books, TV shows or movies I should read or watch please share. I would love and appreciate your recommendations. The last time I truly recall being immersed into a show was one holiday season between Christmas and New Year’s my husband and I binged Breaking Bad. I recall becoming so immersed I felt I looked as disheveled and drugged out as the characters on the show. I wasn’t, mind you, I was just really into it. While flipping through my recent copy of Elle Decor a few of my Top 5’s came to mind. So I grabbed a Sharpie and began taking notes on the glossy pages. So here goes.

Top 5 Places I Enjoy Stopping into while visiting New York ( oftentimes, every time! )

IMG_10621. RH Home Flagship Store in the Meatpacking District – RH Home is filled with more than just furnishings. RHNY Flagship has a barista bar on one level and a beautiful restaurant on the top floor. It’s a visual journey. Preview Video Below.

2. ABC Carpet and Home – Multiple levels of beautiful accessories and things for the home, small and large. IMG_36753. Eataly in the Flatiron District – Yes, it’s chaotic, hectic and you’ll be on sensory overload, but it’s a feast for the eyes and the palate. IMG_70444. Chelsea Market – What can I say but, come hungry. One can find anything from lobster rolls at the Lobster Place and sushi, to unique food stands like Takumi Taco a delicious combination of Japanese and Mexican. The list goes on. Chelsea Market also has great shopping, artisans, music and events. I can never get enough. IMG_33565. International Spy Museum – My latest find. It’s a hands on experience with a plethora of interesting historical facts. Spy movies just so happen to be my favorite genre.

And 5 Historical Favorites Not to Be Missed — The Whitney, The Met, Museum of Modern Art, Central Park and Rockefeller Plaza.

 

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And New York would not be NY without exploring the city with my beautiful daughter Bianca who is a current resident working and living the dream in Manhattan.

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designed to sell

Saturday, June 22, 2019
Debbi DiMaggio

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When you have been doing something for over 30 years that thing you do becomes second nature. For me designing homes is one of those things. Each time we take a new listing there is work to be done. Of course it varies from home to home. And once in awhile a client chooses to sell cleaned and vacant. Usually that only occurs when a home is too far gone and the investment out ways the return.

Let’s break in down.

Obtaining inspections is the first step. It’s not unlike what happens when we get a check up at the doctors office with the addition of further testing and bloodwork. We do the same for a house. Adam and I will book appointments for the following inspections: Termite, Comprehensive Home (checking all systems), Sewer Lateral, Foundation (if recommenced by the home inspector), Roof including Furnace and Electrical if those systems are outdated and require a bid to fix, update or replace. In the Piedmont East Bay these reports will be passed on to the Buyer and paid for up front by the Seller. Area standards vary from area to area, city to city. In Los Angeles where we also work, Buyers pay for any and all inspections the deem necessary, but do not preform such inspections until after they are in contract.

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The second step is the design aspect. This is my favorite part. I enjoy the creativity and the process from bringing a home from lived in to staged to sell. I manage each aspect. First we obtain bids: Staging, Painting and note any repairs, as well as Garden Clean Up, Window Washing, Floor Refinishing or Carpet Replacement and Lighting Updates. Sometimes we update kitchen and bath countertops. Once we have produced all the bids we pass them on to the seller to decide how much or how little they would like to invest. Most of the times our Sellers see the benefit and agree to making the investment. After all they will reap the rewards of a higher sale.

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Having just returned from a listing consultation in the very neighborhood I grew up, and the same neighborhood we raised our children, I realized that we had sold quite a few within a few blocks of one another. As we chatted with the Sellers we reminisced about all the old neighbors. In Piedmont homes are referred to by name, the name of the original homeowner. Even though a home could have had 3 different homeowners since the original homeowner or the one that just stuck in our minds during our childhood.

Here are just a few homes we sold in the neighborhood and brought from Lived In to Staged To Sell.

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80 Cambrian ( Remodeled the home and Leased it. ) Sue Tornlof, PHS

308 Sea View Avenue

7 St James Piedmont

148 Sandringham Road

180 Sandringham Road

199 St James Drive

148 Estates Drive

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If you are interested in a complimentary analysis and design consultation please do not hesitate to call. Adam and I are happy to stop by.

 

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where are you from?

Sunday, March 3, 2019
Debbi DiMaggio

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We all come from somewhere. Only our stories are different. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Meet my newest friends, Walter & Wagner, Brazilian twins. We connected two years ago on Instagram and finally met last night, in person. (They live in Iowa, while I hover 🚁🚁🚁 between Oakland & LA in California.) It was as if we had known one another a very long time. What I didn’t know was that these talented, positive, energetic, happy and fun people were raised in the slums of Brazil. We laughed all evening. Read their amazing story. And if you want to book The Twins for an event, small or large just reach out to me. I produced a film a few years ago, so why not add music producer to my resume? Go to @b_2wins on Instagram Music 🎶

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Meet a few of my other insta connections @debbidimaggiostoryteller

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©2021 Debbi DiMaggio – A Grateful Life! | All Rights Reserved | 342 Highland Ave, Piedmont, CA 94611 | +1 510.414.6777 | debbi@debbidimaggio.com | Privacy Policy
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