Welcome back to another Project Focus blog post! In this post, we look at a project in Santa Barbara’s Hope Ranch neighborhood.
Bunny DeLorie is a Santa Barbara-based realtor with Berkshire Hathaway who has been helping her clients find and sell homes in the region for the past 20+ years.
We’ve been fortunate to work with Bunny on numerous projects and, as her clients will tell you, her background is unique. She blends expertise in interior design, construction, and even home staging (in a past life) with the sales & marketing chops that every realtor needs.
She puts all this to work for her clients. For buyers, she helps them visualize a property’s full potential and see a clear vision to their ideal home. For sellers, she helps them maximize their property’s appeal and sale price. The best part? She loves doing it!
(Did you know that Delicious Decors offers a 10% discount and to carry fees through escrow for realtors who pay for staging?)
Hope Ranch is a region in SB consisting of over 750 homes, many luxury and high-end, with lots measuring at a one-acre minimum. The locale is what one refers to as “prime real-estate,” as the hilly, forested plot of land sits adjacent to the Pacific in Santa Barbara’s southwest corner. In addition to generous acreage and serene, oak-covered roads that pop drivers in and out of coastal views, Hope Ranch is famous for its myriad bridle trails and private beach access.
While the neighborhood is no doubt a coveted place to call home, the house at Via Vistosa was in need of a refreshed design vision to make its sale a success.
Enter Bunny, who, alongside her client, determined the strengths and weaknesses of the property and a plan of attack. With the Mediterranean-style property being built in 1979, they dubbed their concept, “Contemporary with Mediterranean flair,” which would involve highlighting the home’s core traditional elements – exposed wood beams, vaulted ceilings, and terracotta tiling – with fresh interior paint, upgraded landscaping, and, of course, home staging.
To complete their look, they would fully remodel the kitchen & four bathroom suites in a sleek, fluid contemporary design.
Given the size (# bedrooms), multi-tiered layout, and price-point of the property, Bunny thought the most likely buyer demographic would be sophisticated, out-of-towners with a family in the 40-60 year age range.
Most times when we stage a property, it’s common that we take the lead on design (that’s why you hired us, right?), including: identifying the property’s architectural style and key features to accentuate, understanding your target buyer and their tastes & preferences, and, lastly, combining all of this into a design that’s on trend and maximizes flow.
But, given past projects with Bunny, and the vision she and her client had already set in motion, we were prepared for the staging design to be a collaborative endeavor. They even took this a step further when Bunny let us know we’d be using her client’s Corbusier-inspired chairs and sofa. Yes, please!
We took our cue and got to work on filling in the blanks. A few things stood out to our lead designer on the project, Delicious Decors Co-founder & Head of Design, Penny Bergstrom.
First, with a foundation of hard surfaces, metals, and glass already established throughout the property, it would be important to create a warm enclave to preserve the property’s sense of home, without sacrificing on sophistication. We achieved this in the central family room with fireplace by selecting an Italian-inspired grey leather sofa, two chalk upholstered mid-mod accent chairs, and a favorite grey-wash oak coffee set, all resting on a large bohemian natura area rug. To complete the look, the furniture was adorned with boho throws and a mix of solid black and geometric-patterned organic pillows, all backdropped by gold-framed abstract art.
Second, we felt we needed to find opportunities to bring in pops of color to keep our would-be buyers engaged and excited throughout their viewing experience. In the primary bedroom, for instance, we used two contemporary armchairs with distinctive chrome sled base and navy leather cushions, topped off with large Chanel art, to evoke imagination.
And last, this property is ALL about the views (heck, Vistosa means “eye-catching” in Spanish afterall!). An acacia wood sectional, white acrylic high-top, and 7-piece dining set were placed and configured to ensure that, whichever vantage point, the spectacular views would absolutely not be missed.
While we typically take the lead on design, we often work with realtors and home sellers to compliment their vision and any furniture that makes sense to use. We love working with realtors like Bunny who take on longer-term projects (more than a “fluff and buff,” as she would say) and want to start the design conversation earlier as a result.
As a home staging partner, our goal is to help you (and your clients) achieve your goals (pretty meta, huh?). Every realtor, home, and project scope is different and we aim to provide services that are flexible enough to meet those needs.
As always, thank you for reading,