I recently wrote a post asking home stagers how they feel about gray walls. The reaction was amazing, in fact I think it’s my most commented on post this year!
Marie reacted to what I said about the builder telling me that “earth tones are out and gray is in.” She wrote:
It is true that builders should keep building, and with your experience and media coverage, you probably feel confident enough to argue with his statement. However, as a new Home Stager with experience in staging only my own homes so far (albeit successfully), his comment would make me doubt my preference for warm and earthy tones.
It’s almost a reflex to assume someone else is right and you’re wrong (even more so when you’re new at something), but this is a mistake that too many women make. I don’t think I’m being sexist here, there has been tons of research coming out recently that proves this point.
For example, studies have shown that female job applicants assume they have to have 100% of the qualifications listed, while males feel 60% is sufficient to apply for the job.
Consider how many opportunities we close ourselves off to because of this pattern of behavior and our lack of confidence!
This applies so well to what I see with the thousands of home stagers I teach and coach. We’re the first to doubt our natural instincts and think we need more home staging credentials even though there actually aren’t any.
That said, when the builder made his comment, I could hear my own little voice of self-doubt inside my head saying, “See you’re really not on top of trends anymore!”
Then I forced myself to look around again and see for myself that the house looked cold and dark, not warm and inviting! Now that’s my opinion, because when all is said and done, decorating and home staging are subjective topics. No two stagers will do the same home exactly the same way. It doesn’t mean one is “right” while the other is “wrong.” Though I’ve certainly seen some home staging solutions that look more right than others.
When I’ve finished a home staging project, the home looks perfect to me.
While staging a home, I’ve obsessed over every last detail down to how the towels are rolled and whether bed skirts hang perfectly parallel with the floor. But is the overall impression “perfect” to everyone who looks at it?
Does perfection really exist, what do you think?
I’d also love your thoughts on how easily we can doubt our own instincts and defer to others we assume are more “qualified.”
By the way, I noticed the builder pulled the gray home off the market already without a sale. Perhaps I wasn’t the only one who didn’t warm up to his color scheme 🙂
Debra Gould, The Staging Diva®
Debra knows how to make money as a home stager and she developed the Staging Diva Home Staging Business Training Program to teach others how to earn a living doing something they love. She is frequently profiled in the media for her home staging expertise and is the author of 5 guides for home stagers.