Donna Coffin - ERA Key Realty Services - Distinctive Group



Posted by Donna Coffin on 3/22/2019

Pinterest is a beautiful thing. Giving us a truly endless supply of crafts, hacks, tips, and recipes for our homes. But as infamous as Pinterest is for its helpfulness is the plethora of “Pinterest Fails” it leaves in its wake. Here’s how to avoid making your home look like a giant craft project instead of the stylish, chic abode you’re dreaming of.

The most important thing to keep in mind is “just because you can, doesn’t mean you should”. Okay, that might sound mean but let me explain.

Just as you’d carefully select high-end pieces for your home you should carefully select your projects. It can be tempting to do #allthethings since they are cheap, easy and let’s be honest, fun. However, overloading on craft projects or any form of decor quickly crowds out style.

So be as strategic with which projects fit your current surroundings as you would if investing a large chunk of change into a piece. Select projects that are cohesive with the current design of your room and home. If your home is sleek and modern but you add a country chic style piece it’s going to look out of place and throw off your whole room.

Go neutral. This doesn’t mean your whole room needs to be beige (boring!) but reaching for neutral colors more often than not will keep your home looking classy and stylish. If you pull out any home decorating magazine you’ll notice that most of the room is neutral. This allows for the pieces you do choose to pull in color with to really pop and take the spotlight.

One strength of crafts is bringing in a variety of furniture and decor. Again, looking at home decor magazines you’ll notice many rooms don’t have full matching sets. Mix feminine with masculine pieces and soft, smooth fabrics with rich, textures. This brings dimension and interest to your room while scratching the itch to go hunting for great fixer-upper finds.

Less is more. To create a stylish home space is key. This also means you might want to do some decluttering in your home. Stuff has a knack for building up. But by creating lots of breathing space between items you create more room for the items you create to be put on display and admired.

Limit trends. I know this one is hard! Limit the number of trendy items you create to prevent your decor from becoming quickly outdated. And overdoing a trend can make a room feel uncomfortable and stiff. For example, one pallet board craft can be fun. But having several in every room of your house will quickly have your home feeling like a giant craft project. Some other trends pushing their welcome? Chevron and copper everything.




Tags: decorating   DIY   pinterest  
Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Donna Coffin on 6/23/2017

A home bar is one thing that most adults should have in their homes. Even if you’re not a drinker yourself, you should have something on hand to offer guests when they come over for an evening of food and conversation. You’ll need the right setup, the right tools, and the right recipes handy to have the perfect home bar. Whether you have a bar already or are looking to build your own, we have all the tips that you’ll need as a rookie bartender.  


The Essentials


You’ll need quite a few essentials in your home bar including but not limited to:


  • Glasses
  • Bitters
  • Bar tools
  • Recipe books
  • Spirits
  • Mixers
  • Garnishes

Find The Right Surface To Transform Into A Bar


You can easily transform any table, sideboard, or cart into a bar. If the vessel that you’re using has a drawer, that’s even better. You can keep all of your bottles, glasses, decanters, and openers in one convenient place. It’s not bad if you can’t fit all of your supplies in one place. Less used items can be stored in the pantry. 


You can even use a simple bookshelf to store all of your bar supplies. Transform any bookcase from “boring bookshelf” to home bar in no time. You can arrange the shelving by category, giving each shelf a purpose. You can keep spirits on one shelf, glasses on another shelf, tools on another, and recipe books on another shelf. 


Does Your Home Have An Actual Bar Built-In?


Many homes actually have bars built in, but people rarely use them because they feel inexperienced in using the bar tools of the trade. Whether you have a full wet bar or a simpler dry bar, keep all of the essentials there. You’ll need:


  • Bar towel
  • Trash can
  •  Glasses
  • Decanter
  • Bar spoon
  • Strainer
  • Shaker
  • Access to ice
  • Juice
  • Sodas
  • Juicer
  • Limes
  • Lemons
  • Jigger
  • Simple Syrup
  • Old fashioned glass
  • Peeler
  • Mesh strainer

Location Of The Bar


If you’re setting up a brand new bar, there’s a variety of places that you can put the bar. If you have space in the kitchen, you can add it to a corner right there. Other great places for your bar could be a den or a man cave. Wherever you’ll spend time hanging out with company is a good place to keep your bar. If you have children, you might even consider getting a locking cabinet system for your liquor. You don’t want little hands getting into what they’re not supposed to.  


Setting up your own home bar is something to be proud of. It will be quite the conversation piece when guests come over. You’ll be able to discuss your collection of liquors and see if friends have any recommendations as to what you might add to your selection of liquors. A home bar is an entertaining essential.





Posted by Donna Coffin on 3/10/2017

Spring is a favorite season of many. The weather gets warmer and the trees and flowers begin to bud and blossom. But spring is often a season that doesn’t get it’s own décor. Fall and winter, the coziest of seasons, have their own décor that differentiate them from the rest. Their decoration brings a cozy, warm feeling into the home. And when that décor is put away to welcome warmer weather, the home can sometimes feel empty. I’m here to help you change that. Check out these tips for the perfect home décor to welcome and celebrate spring. String Lights: One of the best things about the holidays are the decorations, which of course, includes lots and lots of lights. Although these often come down months before spring arrives, it is still nice to bring them back into the home, and outside of the home, for a new season. Have a deck or patio with a canopy or trees nearby? These are great places to hang simple string lights or decorative seasonal light strands such as stars, lanterns, and flowers. They bring a fun atmosphere to the outdoors. As for the indoors, adding lights above front doors or in bay windows can bring back some of that coziness that you feel in the cooler months. Candles: Candles are another form of décor that bring a feeling of warmth and contentment to the home and, they are not just for the fall and winter. Spring scented candles come in a myriad of fresh, floral scents. Flowers: Moods instantly brighten as the first buds begin to bloom. Bring that joy into to the home with fresh cut flowers, whether from your own garden or the local florist. They bring the season inside and add to the home’s springtime décor. Orchids, tulips, lilies, carnations and roses are perfect options to create lovely arrangements with. Arrangements are perfect for centerpieces on tables or in bay windows. Spring Holiday Decorations: Easter and Memorial Day are holidays that fall during the spring. Bring the festivities to the home by decorating for these holidays. Easter is always fun to decorate for with children but tasteful touches of Easter are equally as nice. Memorial Day may feel like the start of summer with much warmer weather and a holiday weekend, but should not be forgotten as a spring holiday. Cookouts and parties are a great excuse to add Memorial Day decorations to the indoors and outdoors. Other Home Items: There are so many other ways to add spring décor into your home. Consider decorative plates with spring colors and flowers, flower-patterned accent pillows, bedspreads, comforters, pastel colored blankets, and spring hanging artwork. Bring spring to life inside and outside of your home with décor that brings out the best of this season!





Posted by Donna Coffin on 2/12/2016

Candles can make a home look inviting, cozy and warm. They can also give a glow to many people’s skin tones. Candles come in many sizes, shapes and scents. Burning of candles during a showing can make the home feel warm and inviting making the buyer feel relaxed and calm. Try to pick out colors like maroon (cinnamon) orange (pumpkin) these scents are soothing and relaxing scents and will help make the potential sellers feel like home. The placing of the candles is very important. The best places to put them are in the bathroom, bedroom, kitchen table, window sills, and fireplace mantel. If you have a fireplace, lighting a fire is a sure way to give that room a warm and welcoming feeling. Everybody loves a fireplace and your buyers will too. Bake something delicious smelling. The Real Estate experts swear by the just baked smell when showing a home. It makes your potential buyers feel right at home. Things like Apple pie; chocolate chip cookies or fresh baked bread all will create that warm and inviting feeling. Family photos in the home make your home feel like a house full of love. Potential buyers who see photos of a family having fun, and enjoying life in their home will create a sense of a home that has a lot of memories and love. Bottom line, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere can help you sell your home.





Posted by Donna Coffin on 10/18/2013

Is your kitchen a headache for you?  Thinking on a style upgrade?  Many people want to make their kitchens more comfortable to be in, but don't have the first clue where to start.  Here's a few ideas. Hide your garbage can - One of the first projects that you can undertake is moving your kitchen garbage can to an out-of-sight place, like under your sink.  This is a simple project that you can undertake yourself, and will help simplify your kitchen's look, on top of increasing your floor space.  You can also take this as an opportunity to consider whether or not you'd like to try your hand at going green.  Consider making a separate hidden bin under your sink for recycling. Under-cabinet lighting - Under-cabinet lighting is an easy way to add some ambiance to your kitchen.  You can install strip-lighting under your cabinets yourself, or hire a contractor to install a few.  This will serve to highlight certain aspects of your kitchen, which can't really be done by relying solely on overhead lighting. Tile backsplash - Installing tile in the area between your cabinets and cupboards will make cleanup nice and easy, while adding a bit more style to your kitchen. Solid surface countertops - This is one of the big remodels, but it is also one of the most beneficial.  If you live in a home with laminate countertops, then it may be time to consider upgrading to something a little more style-conscious and useful, like granite or marble. For more ideas, visit http://www.houzz.com/photos/kitchen.