Who doesn’t love a good helping of before and after photos? As homemakers, we love seeing how home furnishings can transform an entire living space. Which is why we’re suckers for before and after home inspiration stories. Today, we’re sharing the home renovation story of local home stager Jessica Miller.
She has worked with companies such as Better Homes and Gardens and ESPN. Keep scrolling to see Jessica’s impressive before and after photos from her own home renovation and visit her website to see more of her home staging projects.
Behind the Scenes of Jessica’s Home Renovation
How did you plan out your home renovation?
“We, my partner Tony and I, decided to start with the room that bothered us the most and that we both spent the most time in. With that being said, we landed on our master bedroom. It’s a very large room that needed a lot of TLC because in reality…it was gross. It desperately needed gallons of fresh paint and new carpet. All in all, it was pretty simple and cost-effective but just took some serious time.”
“Next up was the obnoxious kitchen (see pictures for proof). We knew it would be a doozy and more of an investment, so we planned it out carefully. Once that was done, we moved on to the small-but-mighty first floor bathroom. After completing those three projects, we both agreed that small spaces are much more of a challenge than large spaces. Next up is the nursery because I’m eight months pregnant with our first.”
What advice do you have for homeowners who are considering a renovation?
“Patience is important!
Make a plan but don’t pick everything at once. Start with what you are most excited about or what’s the most important to you then frame everything else around it.”
Which room is your favorite in your home and why?
“That’s hard to say, but I will go with the kitchen because it’s the most impressive renovation considering where it started from.”
If money wasn’t an object, what would you change about your home?
“We would convert our three-season porch into a living room or dining room. The investment needed really adds up quick because we would need heating, cooling, new windows, insulation and flooring. Then, we would add a half bath upstairs so we could have a proper master suite.”
Who’s your home style icon?
“Well lucky for me, I recently got to meet my home style icon, Emily Henderson, on a film production set here in Des Moines.
I freelance for Meredith Corporation and she was hired to be the star in a video series for Better Homes & Gardens. I basically got to spend the entire week with that sweet, down-to-earth woman. Talk about surreal.”
How did you land in home staging?
“If you asked me three years ago if I would be staging homes, my answer would have been…huh? But funny enough, the way it started happened kind of naturally. I’ve been a prop and wardrobe stylist since 2007. I’ve worked on sets nationally like Better Homes and Gardens, ESPN and Lowe’s as well as local gigs for dsm Magazine, Iowa Realty and Iowa State University.
Photo credit: Jake Boyd Photography | Staging: Jessica Miller
With that being said, two years ago I had a realtor friend approach me about a home that needed help to make it more sellable. My answer was yes but I really had no idea what I was doing because I’d never actually staged a home before or even considered the logistics. But, I was bound and determined to figure it out. I pretty much live by the ‘fake it til you make it’ mantra and let’s just say it definitely worked to my advantage in this situation.”
Photo Credit: C+W Studio | Staging: Jessica Miller
Do you have a favorite project to date?
“The most satisfying projects for me are when I get contacted by a homeowner or realtor after their home or listing has been on the market for more than 90 days. Maybe the home hasn’t sold yet because it’s not showing well empty or with the current furniture in the home. Once I get my inventory in the home I have a 100 percent success rate. Knock on wood.”
Any tips on taking Instagram-worthy home photos?
“It’s all about natural lighting and having a good editing app. My all-time favorite app is VSCO Cam.”
Why do you shop at Homemakers?
“Homemakers has been my go-to ever since I started staging homes. The prices are reasonable and the selections are unbeatable. A weekly trip to the clearance room is not uncommon for me. For example, I need a lot of rugs in my inventory and I’ve always found the best deals in the clearance room.”
Oh yeah, and the cookies are a nice little bonus.”
What’s your favorite home design trend?
“I love mixing prints and textures. I tend to air on the neutral side of things so prints and textures help bring a 3D effect into the home.
Also, I am loving the color green. I feel like it can go with everything or anything. For example, adding a tall tropical leaf plant in a corner of room can really change the dynamics of a space. Or an accent pillow with a touch of green can really make a room feel more luxurious.”
Discover More Home Inspiration
Looking for more home inspiration? See all of Jessica’s before and after photos from her home renovation blog post or go follow her on Instagram! And don’t miss another post on the Homemakers blog. Subscribe to receive the latest furniture trends, home solutions and design inspiration right in your inbox.