You’re moving! What to do with all that STUFF!

So you’re moving!  Onto the next chapter in your life.  It’s exciting until you start to get a handle on what exactly it is you need to move.  How did you acquire all this STUFF! Fortunately, there are several options for your accumulations.

Option #1 – DONATE

There are many fantastic places for the furniture, clothing, household items you no longer need.  Here are some of my favorites!

Household Goods  530 Main Street, Acton       (978) 635-1710

Household Goods provides a full range of donated furniture and household items, free of charge, to help people in need make a home. Most of their clients are moving out of motels or shelters into very small apartments.  They can pick furniture and household goods at no charge, to help set up an apartment and get themselves back on their feet. A large percentage of their clients have children so for safety reasons they do not accept glass topped tables,etc.
Drop off donations on Tuesday, Thursdays and Saturdays from 9-12. Click here for a list of items they accept.

More than Words
More than Words – BEST place for book donations


You’re moving, downsizing and need to trim that library back a bit? There is a fabulous organization that takes gently loved books.  I can’t say enough about them.

More than Words helps at risk youth who are in the foster system, court-involved, homeless, or have dropped out of high school.  (781) 788-0035

With two bookstore locations, they employ these youths empowering them to take charge of their lives by taking charge of a business They challenge the youth with two jobs: the Business Job and the “You” Job.

• Work 20+ hours/week
• Manage an online & retail bookstore in Boston and a bookstore/café in Waltham
• Train in all aspects of business
• Facilitate peer-led trainings and team meetings
• Plan and host store events
• Track performance and earn promotions

• Learn essential life skills (opening a bank account, finding housing, getting an ID)
• Participate in workshops, mock interviews, resume building
• Craft individualized action plans
• Be accountable for their progress
• Commit to getting GED or diploma
• Receive assistance to pursue higher education

More than Words has 2 Store locations:

Bookstore and Cafe
376 Moody Street
Waltham, MA  02453

Boston Warehouse Bookstore

242 East Berkeley Street, 2nd Floor
Boston, MA 02118
Also:  Book Donation drop off location:   56 Felton Street, Waltham           (781) 314-9330

More traditional donation outlets:

Habitat for Humanity – ReStore   Donations are sold, with monies going towards Habitat housing projects in our area.

Both Epilepsy Foundation and Big Brothers / Big Sisters have monthly pick-ups in your area.   You can call or schedule on-line.

Option #2 – CONSIGNMENT  

Moving service and delivery company illustration. Two loader mover man holding and carrying sofa with big carton cardboard box. 3d color vector creative concept with characters.
Moving service and delivery company illustration. Two loader mover man holding and carrying sofa with big carton cardboard box. 3d color vector creative concept with characters.

Consigning gives you the option of getting a few shekels for your pieces.   I like Buy and Consign in Waltham.  Hand pick estate cleanouts.  Their cut is 50%.  Prices are reduced every 2 months until they’re gone.  Eventually, however, the items are donated.

Option #3 – ON-LINE SITES

EBAY – enough said!

REPLACEMENTS – they deal with china, crystal, flatware and dinnerware.  When I inherited my mother’s china, we replaced the missing pieces here!


GotJunk   or  (800) 468-JUNK  (5865)

Type in your zip code, select the pick up date / time (it’s a 2 hour window). They donate or recycle 61.3% of what they pick up!  Picking up appliances, furniture, TV’s, mattresses, and bags / boxes of who knows what.  Prices seem very reasonable. A client of mine used them.  He left a huge pile of lawn furniture, old mattresses, boxes of misc items.  Got Junk showed up in a 20’ branded truck, loaded everything.  Took a Charge card over the phone.  About $750.00.  DONE!


Clean out your House
Clean out your House

Clean Out Your House

(781) 826-3120) is the sister company of Buy and Consign.  They take everything from any part of your home including the garage, attic and basement – furniture, clothing, rubbish, hazardous wastes, old bikes, or anything that is cluttering up your home. They take everything, do all the labor, and are responsible for disposing of it in a green and environmentally safe way.  They also work in partnership with Household Goods!

 Option #5 – ESTATE SALE

Most estate sale companies will sort, price and catalog items.  However, you want one that goes that extra step.

  • Place drop cloths over all carpet
  • Clean and wipe all items
  • Have a cashier
  • Have several security people, ideally 1-2 per floor
  • Advertise in local paper and online
  • Inform local antique dealers
  • Post the sales on their website
  • Clean house when finished
  • Donate all items left
  • Give donation paperwork to Seller

There is a charge of between 25 – 30% of the total sales. Some companies charge a flat fee.

In your search, for an estate sale company, also ask for referrals. Call different clients that have used them.

Trilogy Estate Sales is very good.  (617) 969-1093

They will liquidate the entire contents of a home and provide free consultations!

There are lots of options depending on your time and the complexity of the job.  The biggest help of all is TIME!  Give yourself alot of it. If you know you’re going to be down-sizing in a few years, start NOW.








My Top 5 Interior Design Books

Interior Design Book
Suzanne Kasler , Timeless Style

Suzanne Kasler: Timeless Style

Her second book.  I LOVE her!! She has such a high spirited, classic style.  Her homes would be so fun to live in, tons of bright energy, extremely liveable. Rooms are uncluttered yet impactful with well-chosen pieces. Just the right amount of Patina, Sparkle, & Texture.  Excellent focal points in her rooms.  Another high point:  Kasler does an incredible, creative job with artwork placement. On colors:  Page 76,,,,”Champagne, blue-gray, and a touch of raspberry”. Stunning!

Simply SereneThomas Pheasant: Simply Serene

“There is nothing more luxurious than space to breathe”.  When you get his book, actually READ it.  His homes are beautiful, uncluttered.That about says it… Love the black & white photos, complimented with the Silver pages.


He starts by defining the space than layers in

  • A truly beautiful room is beautiful before it’s ever decorated.



Jennifer Boles, In With the OldJennifer Boles: In with the New

Jennifer is creator of one of the top interior design/lifestyle blogs, the Peak of Chic.

She takes us alphabetically through vintage objects, maybe you’ve seen these in old movies, at your grandmother’s home, or on a trip to a museum.  Incredible design, but dated?  Jennifer shows us – absolutely not!  Think “modern transitions.”  Next time you’re strolling your favorite antique store, or inherit a piece that reminds you “when”, grab this book and recreate it.  You’ll look at everything with a fresh eye.  This is an amazing book, she writes so well.  You can see why her blog has been around since 2006!


Rhonda Rice Carmen, Designers at HomeRhonda Rice Carmen, Designers at Home

Popular lifestyle blog “All the Best

Tour designers homes and provide insights on they design their personal spaces.

New look at interior design books.


Interior Design Book
The Art of Classic Details, Theory, Design, and Craftsmanship

Phillip James DoddThe Art of Classic Details: Theory, Design, and Craftsmanship

OMG – This book made me cry, it’s so beautiful. Every… single… page.  The Forward, by David Easton is perfect:  “Journey through the Art of Classical Detail with a nod to our past and a keen eye to our future.”  Dodd, with a Masters for Architecture from Notre Dame and accolades decades long, does a magnificent job putting this tomb together.

This work is divided into two sections:

The Essays: Written by top architects, scholars and craftsman, it illustrates classical design detailing and artisanship. Lots of references to the Villas of Renaissance architect and builder Andrea Palladio.

The Projects: Presents an intimate look at 25 classically-designed homes in Great Britian and the United States. It details the interior design and detailing as well as the impressive classically influenced home exteriors and gardens.

For any remodeling project, this book is a fabulous reference.

My FAVE PAGE here is #106.  Chesney’s Georgian Marble mantle with charcoal walls and a crystal chandelier.  WOW.



Luis Bustamante – Brilliantly Merging Antiquities with Contemporary

LUIS BUSTAMANTE – Madrid Interior Designer, Sculptor, Painter

Navigating the random “Design Alleys and Avenues” of Pinterest, I found Luis Bustamante,a Madrid Interior Designer. Trained as a Sculptor and Painter, you can appreciate his sense for combining these critical aspects into his work.

Remember the first time you visited the Egyptian Antiquities room on a museum trip? My museum moment was the Carnegie MuseuLuis Bustamante library photom of Art in Pittsburgh, a 9th grade field trip. That trip changed me forever. I had never known such beauty. The calming museum room peaceful & elegant……Lofty carved columns seemed to climb to the sky. Hand etched carvings displaying written language of the past through falcons,eyes, reed boats and odd symbols. Sometimes the museum would even let you run your hand over the etchings!

Luis Bustamante uses these powerful influences yet layers in contemporary pieces. His favorite color is white,so his rooms are crisp and fresh. He will recreate your “museum moments” so you can relive them forever. He’s on THE LIST!
Please visit his site He also has a book available through Amazon.
Interiores: Luis Bustamante

My Top 10 Interior Design Books for 2012

1. The Age of Elegance: Interiors by Alex Papachristidis 

The Age of Elegance; Interiors by Alex Pachristidis

Born and raised in New York City, Papachristidis launched his career while still at Parsons School of Design.  Traveling extensively from an early age, he was exposed to and influenced by many beautiful homes and buildings. “Look at everything, go everywhere” is his mantra. His style:  Classic, lots of marble, leopard, cheetah, and gilt; he makes linen look luxurious.   His rooms are always very well balanced, I don’t mean physically…but visually balanced.  Never staid; traditional elements with amazing touches of the unexpected. Lots of design layers, both objects and fabrics.  The book cover itself, speaks for his style. My FAV page in this interior design book is the cover (see pg. 157).

2. Around Beauty, by Barbara Barry 

Barbara Barry, Around Beauty

Barbara Barry’s first home design book!  Outlining her daily search for beauty, how she finds it or creates it. Her signature calligraphic scroll,  free form yet stylized, she took it from her doodles! She refers to them as her “slinky ovals”. Take your time, curl up with a nice cup of tea. It’s an amazing “curl up” book. Peace and contentment and beauty. Simplicity, clarity, confidence. She and Jan Showers have the most beautiful lamp cords (see page 287). Colors and textures of nature.  Wrought iron wall paper, sheet patterns, dinnerware, structured yet relaxing, and lightly elegant. High end distribution of her products:  Lighting, furniture, fabrics, carpets, tile, sheeting, luggage, dishes, etc.. can be found at Bloomingdale’s, Neimans, etc.

3. The Houses of Veranda, by Lisa Newsom

The Houses of Veranda, Lisa Newsom

Veranda is one of my favorite shelter magazines.  Evolved from Southern Accents, with a clean, sophisticated sense.  This interior design book takes you through many of their featured homes: bright, comfortable, simple, sophisticated. Every home featured is stunning. Different homes, different designers.  My hands down FAV PAGE here is 61.  The simple yet strong contemporary art piece  (Rothko having a rigid moment in gold and white) is amazing over a more traditional hall table.  The lines in this arrangement, vertical carvings in the table, fluted columns and the horizontal movement of the painting, are impactful. Layer in the more ornate black sphinx, crown molding, candelabra pieces, and it all comes together.  Suzanne Kasler, one of my favorite interior designers actually designed this room (her book is included on my list, too!)

4. Flowers, by Carolyne Roehm 

Carolyne Roehm, Flowers

Carolyne Roehm worked for Oscar de la Renta, was married to Henry Kravis, friends with and inspired by Bill Blass. You can see the Blass influence.  She bring strong Haute Couture to home design, which is well balanced with her strong Midwest roots. Bill Blass called her the “Ultimate Tastemaker.”

I’ve met Bill Blass in my previous life – my former company designed and marketed his bedding line for several years.  Talk about a tastemaker, the man was stunning.  I remember his shoes were impeccable!

Actually, I love everything Carolyne Roehm has ever touched, have every book she’s ever written.  She first introduced a seasonal collection of books, almost 10 years ago.  This was my first taste of Carolyne Roehm in the late 1990’s.  I’ve followed her ever since. Please read about her renovation of Weatherstone, her cherished Connecticut home, after the fire.  She’s currently working on a second home in Charleston.  Equally beautiful!

Here is a list of Carolyne Roehm’s books, if you’d like to explore more!

Every single page in her books are flawless.  She shows the most refined taste level – I started with her, she inspires me!

5. A Visual Life: Scrapbooks, Collages and Inspirations, by Charlotte Moss 

Charlotte Moss, A Visual Life

Charlotte Moss is another prolific interior design writer with more than 5 books (OK, 8) to her credit. She used to have a store on the Upper East Side in Manhattan, which closed down in 2008.  Despite being open for only a short time, the store had such a wonderful respite.  I love the way it was merchandised:  it was a journey of perfectly decorated rooms.  The shop was located in an old townhome in which I could spend several hours. Each room is well layered.   It’s a great place to find that unique, tasteful gift.  My favorite of her books, A Visual Life,  is a creative scrapbook layout.  Each page offers a style collage, your eye wanders and learns.  A lot of focus on garden exterior shots….C’est Inspire tab on her website.  Stunning website…look at her pictures. She used to work on Wall Street, their loss!

6. The Collected Home: Rooms with Style, Grace and History, by Darryl Carter 

Darryl Carter - the collected home

I was actually exposed to Darryl Carter by a client of mine. Her home was put together so well; it sold immediately! She had impeccable taste, so I thought “why not”?

Darryl Carter believes in the “collected home”, an architectural envelope enhanced by individual possessions layered in over time. This interior design book leads you through the design process. His chapters include: Feel, Collect, Curate, Evolve. His rooms are neutral and uncluttered, yet collected. Primarily darker woods with very light walls make strong, visually interesting rooms. Carter uses lots of antique architectural elements with natural patina, old leather trunks, beams, repurposed doors. Layer in key pieces to finish with simple sophistication.

He’s also sprinkled tips throughout.  Anyone starting a renovation or filling a new home, must read The Collected Home. He’s an amazing writer, with strong choice of words. A great read!

OK, So the next 4 aren’t from 2012…but they’re amazing books by incredible interior designers and I had to make sure they were on your radar.

7. Suzanne Kasler: Inspired Interiors, by Suzanne Kasler

Suzanne Kasler, Inspired Interiors

Suzanne Kasler is one of my favorite interior designers.  Her gorgeously elegant rooms are rooted in classic design, but with a light, feminine touch.  A pink-velvet seat cover here, a scarf used as a throw there, Her rooms are dressed up but comfortable and liveable,  It’s no wonder she was named one of the top 100 designers by House Beautiful. She is one of my all time favorite interior designers.  She has a new book out this year, Timeless Style…we’ll cover that later.


8. Mary McDonald: Interiors, The Allure of Style, by Mary McDonald

Interior Design top 10

Although I don’t embrace her style completely, there are things she does very well. “Old school and elegant with a touch of whimsy”. She’s eclectic, classic, and clean, very clean and crisp. She starts neutral and adds pops of color evenly. The end result often shows strong use of color in traditional settings with layers of pattern, texture and color.  Some of her rooms almost have a Kelly Wearstler approach to color.  Dec pillows, draped fabrics and upholstered pieces show perfect dressmaker detailing.  Along with fantastic wallpapers, this is her focus.  One of my favorite rooms is totally papered in leopard. (I might tone it down and do a single wall, but the look is incredible). My favorite color choices, chocolate, taupe, and the palest blush pink.  So rich!  She’s very good at taking older pieces of furniture and updating them via color and or fabric.  If you’ve inherited some great pieces and aren’t quite sure how to layer them in, you’ve found your source. PS – She’s somewhat of a local girl; she went to BC before Parsons!

9. Glamour at Home, by Nancy Corzine 

Nancy Corzine, Glamour at HomeHer website features furniture, lighting, fabrics, and accessories (home textiles coming soon!) I personally COVET her Marston bench, stunning in a soft, buttery leather. Nancy Corzine’s style is Hollywood upscale chic with a touch of whimsy.  She has an amazing color sense.  Her colors are very light and airy. Her interior design book is broken up with lessons on how to choose the right pieces for your room.  She focuses on making even the practical spaces look inviting.  Office space, kitchens:  a huge focus for her is your foyer.  “It should reflect and make a place where an exceptional a statement should be made, an unforgettable first impression.” Her rooms are always well done. Favorite color combination: soft robin’s egg blue with shades of sand, taupe.  Friendly and inviting.

10. Glamorous Rooms, by Jan Showers 

Jan Showers Glamorous Rooms Book

Look at her Louis Mirror:  This overscaled soleil mirror makes in impactful statement in any room. She does an amazing job with  lamps from well shaped shades to the stunning silk twisted cords.  There are some similar styled lamps in the Cottage, Concord. She has the BEST customer service staff, Natalie Nix is amazing.  When you’re in Dallas, stop by Jan’s showroom.  Natalie will make you feel welcome! She’s friendly and efficient, great follow through! Jan’s style is clean, fresh, bright.  Nice use of color, very user friendly color combinations. Jan Showers also has her own blog, which you can sign up to receive on her website. I know it’s going to be an incredible day, when I see it in my mailbox.  If only she knew how happy she makes me!