Category Archives: Tips and Ideas

Things to Do

Often the week of Thanksgiving is filled with visitors. To help you out I decided to put together a comprehensive list of things to do in the Philadelphia, PA area this week. If you are hosting friends or family, this activity list will come in handy to keep everyone busy and happy. Have fun!

Things to do in Philadelphia – Family Friendly:

Things to do in the suburbs of Philly:

  • People’s Light Theater:  See a play a family friendly Panto at the People’s Light, this year they are featuring Aladdin.
  • Strasburg Railroad:  Take a holiday-oriented train ride with the kids and enjoy candy canes and hot cocoa.
  • Interactive Entertainment:  Bates Motel Escape Rooms in West Chester, PA where you reserve a room and as a team solve how to complete the task and get out of the room in 60 minutes.

Go Shopping

Volunteer

If you are not affiliated with a church community, and you are interested in volunteering over the holiday, click here to view Salvation Army locations near you.

See a Movie

Not sure what the latest movie is this holiday season? Click here to get some ideas and information from Fandango.

Be Active – Get Outside

  • Walk:  I love fresh air and if the weather cooperates take the family for a walk. Visit the rolling hills of historic Valley Forge National Park.
  • Ride:  Take advantage of the bike rental options in Philadelphia with Indego, and if you want to map out some ride ideas, click here for locations to visit.
  • Climb:  Interested in experiencing rock climbing? Visit Rock Gym in Downingtown or Doylestown.
  • Jump:  Take the kids to a trampoline park, Urban Air in Downingtown, or Sky Zone in Glen Mills. Want to be a little more adventuresome? Consider skydiving at IFly in King of Prussia.
  • Axe Throwing:  Have you heard of this activity? You can schedule as a group, and you throw axes at Urban Axes (must be 21+).

Redesign Right, LLCHave a fantastic holiday! Thank you for being part of the Redesign Right community!

By Debbie Correale, founder and owner of Redesign Right, LLC. You can learn more about her at RedesignRight.com. Find her on Facebook.com/RedesignRight, Twitter @RedesignRight, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Houzz, Google+ and Instagram.

The Week before Thanksgiving Checklist

One week before Thanksgiving! Though I love this time of year, staying organized and balancing work and fun requirements can sometimes drive me nuts. Because of that, I wanted to create a week before Thanksgiving checklist that will help offer tips and direction for those last minutes needs.

The week before Thanksgiving Checklist:

  1. Finish your grocery list and purchase whatever you can now that doesn’t need to be fresh, save those items for the last minute run.
  2. Do you have a craft to keep the kids busy or games to play? While you are working, keep the kids occupied making place tags that can be as easy as using stickers, stock paper, and markers. If the kids are older they could look up gratitude quotes and create inspirational notes for each guest. If you want something printed, click here for printable place cards, all you have to do is insert the name! Whatever you plan, keep it simple with minimal mess.
  3. Do you have an after-dinner activity planned? I know there’s usually a football game but if you are not a football watching family you may want to include a family-friendly movie. One of my favorite things to do is watch old home movies, play Tripoley or start a difficult puzzle and leave it on a table for all to walk by and try!
  4. If this is your first time hosting Thanksgiving at your home, click here for fabulous recipes and tips for a traditional Thanksgiving that will keep you organized and on track.
  5. If you are still unsure how you want to decorate the serving table and need some inspiration, click here to get some ideas from Pinterest.
  6. If you are unsure how to set the table, please click here to review the guides for the various table layouts. If you want the kids to help, click here for a printable of the table setting from Emily Post that they can use.
  7. If you are dealing with a frozen turkey, click here to understand how long it will take to safely thaw (in your refrigerator.)
  8. Do you want to serve appetizers? Since you are eating a big meal, you don’t want anything heavy, hard-to-make, or time-consuming. Personally, I like a platter of veggies and dip, nuts, and cheeses anything that can be prepared ahead of time and quickly set out as the guests arrive. Be sure to have cocktail napkins available! Another option is to ask a friend or family member to bring an appetizer.

Have a wonderful holiday with your friends and family! Enjoy yourself and don’t spend all your time working. Relax, grab a glass of your favorite beverage and connect, after all that is what this holiday is about, giving thanks for times together!Redesign Right, LLC

By Debbie Correale, founder and owner of Redesign Right, LLC. You can learn more about her at RedesignRight.com. Find her on Facebook.com/RedesignRight, Twitter @RedesignRight, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Houzz, Google+ and Instagram.

Helpful Thanksgiving Planning Tips

I love this time of year, all the beautiful colors, family, food, and fun! As we are a couple of weeks away from Thanksgiving, I wanted to offer a few tips to help take the stress away and have a little fun.

First, create your to-do list. I don’t know about you, but I can’t operate without a prioritized list. Be realistic about what you want to get done and list shortcuts if you run out of time. If you need a dessert and baking isn’t your thing, it’s ok to run to Trader Joe’s and grab a box of their Apple Cranberry Tarts. Add fresh whip cream or ice cream, and it will be delicious!

Do you plan to get a fresh turkey? If so, be sure to order it from your favorite market now. The rule to go by has always been one pound per person. That may be too much turkey, and you will have leftovers with all of the other items you plan to serve. If you want tips on planning a menu or recipes, click here for information from Epicurious.

Put together your shopping list and purchase all of your dry and frozen goods this week.

Decide on the decorating theme you want for your table setting or buffet. Now is the time to pull out any time-cherished items and use them. If you have a set of silver from your grandmother, pull it out, polish it and get it ready.

Personally, I like to see the person across from me and don’t enjoy centerpieces that get in the way. Grab an assortment of flowers from your local grocery store, selecting the color theme of your choice and mix in greens (or use cuttings from your yard), and create a lovely arrangement, click here for how-to instructions. For ideas decorating your table with pinecones click here, or to use fruits click here.

Take a moment and walk around your dining area and remove any extra things that may be taking up needed space. Do you have a bar cart? Now is the time to consider getting it ready and stocked with whatever you wish to serve to your guests. If you need help with ideas on pairing wine with your turkey, click here. If you do plan on serving wine with dinner, be sure to have a non-alcoholic beverage perhaps a Cranberry-Mint Water, not only does it taste delicious it’s beautiful!

Remember what’s important to you, relaxing and enjoying your time with friends and family!

Redesign Right, LLCBy Debbie Correale, founder and owner of Redesign Right, LLC. You can learn more about her at RedesignRight.com. Find her on Facebook.com/RedesignRight, Twitter @RedesignRight, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Houzz, Google+ and Instagram.

10 Tips to give your Home a Fresh Look

Often as the season’s change, I find myself wanting to change something in my home. If you find yourself feeling this way my advice is first to clear stuff out. I’m not a fan of continually adding things to a home without removing things. To give your home a fresh look first, you have to declutter and focus on the elements that you love. Though this may sound like a big project, here are ten areas to tackle to get you started. Let’s get started! First, create three boxes, labeled:  Recycle, Sell, Donate. Have everyone in the house participate as a family project, and reward yourselves with a special treat when completed!

recycle-sell-donate

  1. Broken Electronics

Find all old CD, DVD or VHS players, TVs, Cell Phones, broken electronic game consoles or toys. Best Buy will responsibly recycle your electronics, click here to view their guidelines and what they will accept. Please note they will take old tube TVs 32″ or smaller. They will take Flat Panel TVs:  LCD, Plasma, LED smaller than 50″. If you recycle your cell phone, be sure to erase or wipe it of all your information by resetting it, look up how to do this for your particular phone. Click here to view recycling tips and resources from the EPA or Recycle Nation. You don’t want these things filling up our landfills releasing bad things into the environment.

  1. Old cables and wires

While you are getting rid of broken and unused electronics, also get rid of their cords or cables. If you find a box of these, and unsure what they belong to, take them to your local Staples or Best Buy location as they will recycle them.

  1. Old bills and paperwork

There is no need to hang onto old electric statements from your first apartment! Check with your financial adviser if you are unsure what you should keep and what you can safely recycle. Click here to read an article with some tips on this topic. Staples offers a paper shredding and recycling service to help you safely and responsibly get rid of potentially secure information on paper. To read more about this service, click here.

  1. Near empty bottles

Look in your cabinets in your kitchen, bathroom, and garage wherever you keep your cleaning items and check if you have multiple bottles of the same thing, consolidate and recycle. Also get rid of old toiletries, makeup, hair products, or hotel samples. If they are new you may be able to donate to shelters in your area, click here to view a list of places to contact.

  1. Unused or broken kitchen equipment

If you were given an ice cream maker or bread maker as a wedding gift and you have never used it, now is the time to liberate yourself of them! Donate to a Habitat Restore in your area or sell in your communities Facebook group.

  1. Old towels, linens, and worn out bath mats

The quickest way to give your bathroom a new and fresh look is to add new towels and bath mat or rug. Give old towels and linens to animal shelters; they are always in need, click here to find one in your area.

  1. Outdated clothes or clothes that don’t fit

I would recommend adding shoes and handbags to this category. If they are quality items that you haven’t used in years, consider selling to a consignment shop. There are online sites such as Rebagg where you can sell your designer bag. Get rid of those old t-shirts from high school, or old promotional shirts from past jobs and sporting events! All of these items can be dropped off at your local Goodwill location.

  1. Children’s artwork

I know this is a challenging category, and I get it, you want to keep everything. After having raised four kids, all budding artists, the amount of artwork can be overwhelming. My suggestion, pick the best piece from a school year and create boxes or books for your kids that you can give to them as memory gifts. Create digital copies of the artwork and use online companies such as Snapfish to compile a customized journal of your child’s art. If you have sculptures or clay pieces, designate a display cabinet where you feature the best pieces from each of your children.

  1. Wrapping paper scraps, packing material, old boxes

If you have a pile of crumpled wrapping paper or packing material from your Amazon orders, recycle it in your local paper pickup. Save what is in good shape and create a storage area for your paper and bows, so they are useful for the future. For some creative ways to store things, click here.

  1. CDS or DVDs

Old computer programs, kid’s games, or old movies you will never watch should be given away or recycled. This plastic is a #7 you will need to confirm with your recycling center if it can handle this, if not click here to find a disc recycling center near you.

The next step, after you have cleared out the stuff no longer enjoyed or used, is to create a fresh flow to a room and decorate in such a way so that there is a focal point using colors and accessories that bring you Redesign Right, LLCjoy. If you need help with a home redesign or a color consultation, call Debbie 610.955.8202 or email to get your project underway before the holiday season.

By Debbie Correale, founder and owner of Redesign Right, LLC. You can learn more about her at RedesignRight.com. Find her on Facebook.com/RedesignRight, Twitter @RedesignRight, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Houzz, Google+ and Instagram. (Feature Photo from Houzz: Organized Living)

5 Quick Home Decorating Tips under $50

Do you find that sometimes you just want a change in your home decorating? I have childhood memories of moving the furniture around in my room to create a new look; the need for decorating change started young for me! For all of you looking for a home decorating idea, I have five tips, and the bonus is that they can be done for less than $50!

1. Add a fun mirror.

If you have an area in a room that may be drab or dark, consider adding a mirror. For a modern look, click here for a 47” round mirror from Target. Hang it above a book case, small wall table, in a dark hallway, or anywhere needing a fresh look.

2. Add a plant.

Plants are fabulous for instant home décor, and they offer health benefits by purifying the air.  You can fill an empty spot with a lovely color of green. You can pick up affordable palms that can be found at your local home store such as Home Depot. Now is a perfect time to purchase decorative pots as many are on end-of-summer sales. Philodendrons are a good choice for inexpensive indoor plants as they do well as table top plants to add a spark of life to your table décor.

3. Add a new pop color by painting a piece of furniture.

Depending on what type of furniture you are painting will depend on how it should be painted. You can quickly transform a small piece into an unexpected pop of color in the room. Pick a fun accent color.  Perhaps your inspiration color is already present in your couch, rug or art.

4. Add decoration with a fun tray.

If you need a quick coffee table arrangement, add a tray to tie a vignette of accessories together. Transform a tray you own, or pick one up at your local craft store and grab the paint you will need while you are there. For inspiration, click here to view ideas on Pinterest.

5. Add a stunning pillow.

Choose from one of the many embellished, beaded, faux fur, beautiful embroidered pillows that can be quite expensive. Because you are buying only one as a pop of color or texture to an existing room, it’s a fun way to add interest and a flash of panache to a drab chair or love-seat.

Redesign Right, LLCExperiment and have some fun!  Or give me a call 610.955.8202 or email and we can think outside the box together!

By Debbie Correale, founder and owner of Redesign Right, LLC. You can learn more about her at RedesignRight.com. Find her on Facebook.com/RedesignRight, Twitter @RedesignRight, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Houzz, Google+ and Instagram.

Paint Your Staircase Railing

I love decorating changes that can be made in a weekend or less and have a big impact on the overall feel and look of a room or area. Assuming you live in a multi-level home, one way to make a significant design change is by changing the color of your railing on your staircase. Personally, I have a favorite color that I recommend to my clients Tricorn Black by Sherwin Williams offers the perfect black.

Painted Black Railing

I love this idea where they painted the railing and spindles all gray:

Photo by Optimise DesignMore staircase ideas

In this example, they painted the spindles of their stairs Nantucket Gray by Benjamin Moore that is also the color of the trim. They left the rail wood stained to match the wood accents throughout the home, and the result is beautiful:

Photo by CK ArchitectsDiscover staircase design ideas

Depending on the size of your home and the amount of light you have, painting the railing and spindles all black makes a dramatic statement:

Photo by Edmonds + Lee ArchitectsSearch staircase pictures

Another idea is to replace your spindles with iron. There are many designs available and to keep the design from being too busy, you would want to map out visually exactly the look you want. For some idea of the variety in iron spindles, click here. Also, this could be a do-it-yourself project; however, the complexity depends on the type of staircase that you have and your experience; it may be a job left to the professionals. Click here for a PDF from Home Depot on how to install iron balusters.

For inspiration on how iron spindles look in a stair case:

Photo by Gast ArchitectsMore dining room ideas

Redesign Right, LLCFor all your color consultations, home decorating, and home staging needs call Debbie 610.955.8202 or email to set up your consultation. If you love home decorating, wish to turn your passion into a career, and get your dream-life going, click here to learn how to get started.

By Debbie Correale, founder and owner of Redesign Right, LLC. You can learn more about her at RedesignRight.com. Find her on Facebook.com/RedesignRight, Twitter @RedesignRight, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Houzz, Google+ and Instagram.

Ways to Hide Your Kitchen Appliances

Over the years, kitchen design and available options have gone through a significant evolution. Your choices in products, appliances, and beautiful countertops and tile are unbelievable. One of the biggest areas of change has been storage options. In this article, I wanted to focus primarily on ways to store your appliances.

Have you heard of or seen an appliance garage? You can put your things away and out of sight in a creative and visually streamlined look. In this example, the cabinet goes to the countertop level, and you slide the appliances out when needed, or click here to see an example with built-in slides.

Here is an example of a vertical lift cabinet door to hide away your appliance:

Wall Appliance Garage

Find the perfect kitchen cabinetry on Houzz

This traditional French kitchen has plenty of space and a place for everything in this over-sized cabinet. If you don’t have space for a large cabinet, consider using the idea and adding one on a smaller scale. The goal is to have a place for everything you need in your kitchen. I love the pull out drawers:

Photo by The French TraditionDiscover kitchen design ideas

If you have a kitchen with a blind corner cabinet, consider adding a tray mechanism to enable easy access to the recessed area:

KITCHEN BLIND CORNER WITH TRAY CABINET

Shop kitchen cabinetry on Houzz

Consider adding a lifting arm to an existing cabinet for your mixer with this product from Rev-A-Shelf:

Redesign Right, LLCIf you need any creative ideas for your kitchen design or picking out colors for your paint, backsplash, tile or flooring, call Debbie 610.955.8202 or email, and we can get to work making your kitchen dreams come true!

By Debbie Correale, founder and owner of Redesign Right, LLC. You can learn more about her at RedesignRight.com. Find her on Facebook.com/RedesignRight, Twitter @RedesignRight, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Houzz, Google+ and Instagram. Featured image from Marc Coan Designs on Houzz.

Desk Transformation

In my last decorating article, How to Transform Old Furniture, I showed you the before and after of how my old mahogany bedroom furniture was updated with a brand new look. I love the idea of using old furniture, updating it with a fresh look and incorporating it differently in your home. This week I wanted to share with you the before and after of my desk transformation.

Let me show you how my large, cherry desk looked before the change:

It served me well for many years; however, I wanted a new look and a new location. That new location happened to be a bay window. The dilemma, how to fit a rectangle nicely into a bay window? I found someone who would cut down and modify my desk to make it fit in the window area! Brilliant idea, right?!

After the modification, I wanted a fresh new look. I had it painted a lovely white (SW 7006 Extra White) to fit with my decorating style and updated the hardware and topped it with glass for durability. I’m very pleased with the way that it turned out! My new work area is bright and cheery, and I’m ready to get to my design and decorating work!

Top View of Finished Desk

If you have an area of your home that does not bring you joy, and you would love a fresh new look, yet unsure how to achieve it, give me a call 610.955.8202 or email, and we can discuss how you can achieve what you want.

By Debbie Correale, founder and owner of Redesign Right, LLC. You can learn more about her at RedesignRight.com. Find her on Facebook.com/RedesignRight, Twitter @RedesignRight, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Houzz, Google+ and Instagram.

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How to Transform Old Furniture

I love the idea of taking something already owned and repurposing it with a new look. With that in mind, I wanted to share some photos of old mahogany furniture of mine that I had transformed. What a difference! If you are happy with the bones or shape of your furniture, you would be amazed at what a fresh color can do to make it new again! I reached out to Patty Oakes, of Oakes Redesign and asked for help with this project.

Annie Sloan Chalk paint created this transformation! If you are familiar with DIY projects, you know about this paint. This finish is not the same as chalkboard paint and has a smooth finish. For those of you who have never heard of it, read this excerpt from the Annie Sloan website:

Chalk Paint® is a decorative paint developed by Annie Sloan 25 years ago. It very rarely requires any preparation, such as sanding or priming, and can be used indoors or outside, on just about any surface. It can revitalize old furniture, walls, ceilings and floors with ease. It’s easy, fun and makes amazing results accessible to everyone.

With a color palette inspired by 18th and 20th Century decor and design, you can easily mix the colors together to extend the range. Add a little water to it to make it smooth, thicken it up by leaving the lid off, make it into a wash by adding even more water.

Patty shared with me that she used a mix of “Annie Sloan Coco chalk paint and added Annie Sloan Honfleur chalk paint to give it a deeper depth of color.” I loved the shape of the hardware on my dressers yet wanted a new look. Patty came to the rescue and used Annie’s White Chalk and clear wax. I love the result!

My old dark mahogany furniture:

My beautiful furniture after it was transformed:

I am very pleased with the result, and the look in my bedroom is exactly what I wanted! Thank you, Patty, for doing such a fantastic job! To contact Patty with a furniture transformation project you have in mind, click here.

If you have a room that you are not happy with, and in need of a new look, and unsure what to do to accomplish a fresh look, give me a call 610.955.8202 or email, and I can help you fall in love with your home all over again!

By Debbie Correale, founder and owner of Redesign Right, LLC. You can learn more about her at RedesignRight.com. Find her on Facebook.com/RedesignRight, Twitter @RedesignRight, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Houzz, Google+ and Instagram.

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Time Saving Tips for the Holidays

Tips for the HolidaysI know your life is very busy right now and I wanted to offer some last minute time-saving tips to help ease some of the holiday stress you may be feeling. Enjoy!

Gift Wrapping and Bow Making

Most large stores have gift wrapping areas, always ask for a gift box and wrapping options it could save you time in the long run. King of Prussia Mall has an area just for gift wrapping, click here to learn about its location.

Creative wrapping ideas:

Easy and Festive Appetizers

Shortcuts

  • Not up for cooking or preparing? Outsource! Both Wegmans and Whole Foods can cater what you want!
  • Purchase an already arranged bouquet at your local grocery store add a lovely ribbon and use as a hostess gift.
  • 5 Holiday Appetizer Table Decorating Tips
  • If you have guests arriving this week, click here for tips to get your Guest Room ready including a checklist of things you may have forgotten.
  • Unsure how to set the table correctly, click here for tips from an expert!

Redesign RightI hope your week goes smoothly and you have a fantastic holiday celebration with your friends and loved ones!

For all your home decorating, paint consultation, home staging, or training needs give me a call 610.955.8202 or email. I look forward to working with you soon!

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