DS Tip Of The Week: Resist the Urge to be “Themey”

When planning an interior design project, you may be tempted to have a theme. Basic rule of thumb–don’t do that! While this can work for smaller, specialized spaces… being tied to a theme can be very restricting.

For this week’s Steinhafels #DecoratingSolutions Tip of the Week we look at ways to make sure you start off on the right foot! Dawn Adamec is an interior designer based in our Waukesha store. She stresses the importance of keeping your options open.

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Dawn explains, “Once you lock into a theme you get stuck with a look. Conversely, if you maintain a more transitional look, it allows you to add and subtract pieces without having to do a complete makeover, and you can continue to freshen up the space just by adding a few items here and there.”

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We post a new, quick and easy decor tip each and every Monday. Check in next week for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.

Steinhafels: Beautiful Furniture, and REALLY Ugly Sweaters!

Here at Steinhafels, we’re all about furniture that’s beautiful, comfortable, and on-trend.

So when our employees get a chance to use their creativity on the other end of the spectrum… it gets pretty UGLY!!

Check out some of this year’s hottest Ugly Christmas Sweater looks across the company!!

The Oak Creek Store kicked off the trend, holding their ugly sweater day in earlier December.

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At our newly reopened Greenfield Store, associates kept their ugly sweater looks super cute and classic.

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Our Waukesha Store team yucked it up with the store’s life-size Nutcracker.

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Meanwhile, to the west at Madison East, they incorporated a potluck into the fun.

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Up North in Appleton we had some NFL ugly sweater rivalry action.

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And at Corporate, the theme was “Ugly Sweater Teams.”

Corporate Ugly Sweater Collage 2017

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Great job everybody… you are all “ugly” in your own special way! We love to see our employees get creative, and have a little fun in between all their hard work.

Click HERE for more pictures. This blog can only take so much tackiness at once!

DS Tip Of The Week: Set the Mood of Your Room with Lighting

Each week we offer a simple and accessible interior design tip to help homeowners create the homes of their dreams. Usually the tips involve furniture or accessories, but this week we’re going to explore something a little more abstract–lighting.

If you want to change the way a room looks quickly, take note of the lighting in the space. This can be especially helpful this time of year, when you’re having guests over, and want to switch things up a bit, but don’t have time or money for a big change.

This week’s Decorating Solutions Tip Of The Week comes from Interior Designer John Newell, who is based at our Kenosha store. John is one of our newer designers, and has 20 years of experience to draw from to help you make proper color, layout, and furniture selections.

When it comes to lighting, John explains, “Something as simple as replacing daylight bulbs with warmer lights will change colors and the comfort level in any room. Most big box stores have examples in the lighting areas if you want to see the effect. Adding dimmers to the switches are also a great way to warm the lighting in a room, and you can tune it back to bright white light when needed. You set the mood!”

Cool Lighting:

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Warm Lighting:

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The best part about tinkering with new lighting looks–you can make it as subtle or dramatic as you want…and if you don’t like it, just go back to your old bulbs! Check in next week for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.

 

DS Tip Of The Week: Adding Texture With Mongolian Fur

Tis the season–a Decorating Solutions Tip Of The Week with a holiday flare! We’re talking Mongolian Fur, which is very on-trend this season. Adding color and texture can be as easy as adding some simple accent pillows.

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Interior Designer Patti Stindt is doing the heavy lifting this week. Patti is based at our new Steinhafels on High Crossing Boulevard on Madison’s east side.

Patti suggests, “Use a variety of different sizes and color, or go monochromatic. No matter what style you are, Mongolian Fur can make a space super chic by adding in the cream pillows with a modern lined sofa.”

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Patti adds, “You could also go casual cozy with a tufted leather sofa and a variety of the pillows. It’s all about layering in the textures. We can also create a very upscale, luxurious feel with chenille fabric, and the mixture of the fur. It will give it an edgy feel. I would even introduce a nice textured throw to coordinate.”

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Have fun and get warm and cozy with Mongolian fur! Check in next Monday for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.

Special Spaces: Changing Lives One Bedroom at a Time

Here at Steinhafels, we are humbled to play a small role in so many wonderful community organizations. One of those groups is Special Spaces Wisconsin, which helps to create dream bedrooms for children with life-threatening medical conditions.

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We’ve partnered with Special Spaces for several years now. The Steinhafels mission is to help people create the homes of their dreams–so Special Spaces is a perfect fit. In a typical interior design project, the living room or family room is usually the focal point of the redesign. But in the case of Special Spaces, the bedroom is the crown jewel of the project! We get to help furnish bedrooms that are true escapes and safe spaces for kids who just want to be kids.

Today we’re going to take a closer look at a recent project in Milwaukee. KK is a 10-year-old who’s been through more in her short life than most of us can even imagine battling in a lifetime. She was in the hospital during her dream bedroom makeover, but when she finally made it home she was delighted to discover her very own “special space” to heal, find comfort and peace.

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KK’s story has been an inspiration to Steinhafels Waukesha Sales Manager Becky Morgan. Becky took some time to tell us more about the Special Spaces program, and why KK’s story has had such an impact on her.

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What inspires you about KK’s story?

Becky: “She’s a fighter! She beat leukemia, had a heart transplant, her body is fighting her new heart, and her leukemia came back. This little girl is just 10 years old. No one should ever have to experience this, let alone a child. Her focus should be on Pokemon and enjoying life, not fighting to live.”

You mentioned KK’s mom being an amazing woman. Tell us a little more about her.

“KK’s Mom. She is a single mother who works in a nursing home, and raises 10 children varying in age from 18-3. When I first visited the home, the children were all happy, there were wonderful notes from school on the fridge, extra curricular activities posted with pride on the fridge, thankful children (one of the youngest was so excited about the gallons of milk in the fridge, he kept saying thank you, thank you). I grew up with both parents and only one sibling, and I know that was not an easy task, so for one parent dealing with the amount of curve balls she has been given–she is truly an impressive mother!”

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What was the focus with KK’s bedroom redesign?

“KK really loves Pokemon and that was the focus for her space. Special Spaces meets with the family and child to make sure they get what they want. The most important part was making sure they had beds, and a bright space to retreat to when needed. The 2 other bedrooms were made to feel the same way–new beds, and space of their own.”

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The Steinhafels Waukesha Store Sales Team held a food and supply drive for KK and her family. Can you tell us more about this?

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“The supply drive came about as I was sitting with a coworker, talking about the needs for this family and how hard the mom works. I am about to be a mother myself, and hearing the heartache that this family is going through brought me to tears. My mother in law also has cancer and she is such a fighter, but I know the toll it takes on her each and every time she has chemo or a bad day. She needs comfort, space and basic necessities. As I was listening to the needs of the family I could not help but immediately want to dive in and get what I could. My parents also taught us to give when we can and to always help others, so to me this was top priority.”

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“We also have some amazing sales associates on our staff. Cheri (a Bedroom Specialist) overheard the needs and immediately said we need to help this family! I talked with our staff and they were all ready to help. They suggested a food drive. I was ecstatic that they were all so ready to jump in and help. They came everyday with food and daily necessities. We also had a great deal of cash donations. With the cash donations I went and got each child and mother a little caddy that I filled with shampoo, conditioner, lotion, soap, toothbrushes, hair brushes, nail polish (they needed something fun), hair ties, deodorant, razors, shaving cream, chapstick, etc. We made the mom a special basket filled with pampering products like face-masks, bubble bath, soothing lotion, etc. We were also able to fill a laundry basket with cleaning supplies, hand soaps, detergent, laundry needs, feminine products, kitchen products, toilet paper, paper towels, paper plates, cooking supplies, and extra soaps and toothbrushes. It was also very important for me to get a huge tub of animal crackers as this was part of the story on their initial visit (the little guy wanted some, and what kid should go without animal crackers??)”

“Renae Williams (Bedroom Specialist) also took it upon herself to make sure each child and their mother had brand new pillows. She came in like Santa Clause with a bag larger than her, filled with brand new pillows–because she said everyone needs a comfy pillow. Steinhafels donated some decorative pillows to jazz up the space too! Kas Oriental Rugs also donated four beautiful rugs for the family, one for each of the bedrooms, and a beautiful rug for their living room.”

How proud are you of your staff?

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“I couldn’t be more proud of them! All I did was tell them this family’s story. They took their own initiative to make such an impact on this. I said give what you can, bring a can good or a toothbrush. They went so far above and beyond, it brought tears to my eyes every single time I walked into our break room, and then watching the family’s faces as they walked into their home was one of the best feelings I have ever had. I am so proud to be a part of this team–I could not ask for better people to surround myself with. Steinhafels is so very lucky to have these wonderful people working for them!”

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We also want to give a shout-out to the Woman’s Club of Wisconsin, Majic Productions, and all of the other amazing volunteers for their work on this makeover. We are so glad we could play a part in bringing a smile to KK’s face!

DS Tip Of The Week: Tall Mirrors

You know you wait all week for this moment… it’s time for another Steinhafels #DecoratingSolutions Tip of the Week. This week’s tip is for those of you who want to give your bedroom a more stately, regal feel.

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Ray Buquet is an interior designer based at our Kenosha Superstore. She has a simple tip for adding a touch of class and elegance to your bedroom. “Place a couple of tall mirrors above your nightstands. This draws the eye upwards, and it can work with any decor. Mirrors are timeless and a wonderful investment–you can use them your whole life long. In addition to giving extra height to the room, it adds versatility to your decor.”

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Don’t be scared to try something new! Check in next week for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.

 

DS Tip Of The Week: Declutter that Corner!

We all strive to keep a clean and neat home because we take pride in our space. It’s also a way to promote a sense of Feng shui, or harmony, in the home, and reduce stress levels.

Get out the notepad and jot down this helpful hint.  That’s right…it’s time for another Decorating Solutions Tip of the Week!  This week’s tip comes from Interior Designer Cecily Gaitan. Cecily works at our Kenosha store, and helps customers in the southeast part of Wisconsin create the homes of their dreams.

Cecily suggests, “Don’t let clutter like laundry or shoes fill up a corner in your bedroom. Use a nice accent chair to fill the space. Or make a reading nook. Sometimes it’s nice to take a minute to yourself, and what better way to do that than to relax in your bedroom!”

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As you see in this picture… less is MORE!  Our designers are hard at work on many more quick and easy design tips for you.  Check in next Monday for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.

DS Tip of The Week: Holiday Accessory Consistency

Thanksgiving is in a few days, and then Christmas is just around the corner. Do you have a huge box of decorations, with no idea how to display them stylishly?

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You are not alone! This holiday-inspired Decorating Solutions Tip of the Week comes from one of our newer designers, John Newell, who’s based in our Kenosha store. His suggestion: When decorating for the holidays, try to use the same style of decorations room to room.

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John explains, “For example try placing all the soft plush decoration in the family room.  Then place the glass and fragile items in the dining room. In the kitchen and living room you can place all the wood and hand crafted items–either store bought or made by your children. By keeping this consistency, it creates flow from room to room, and gives each room its own distinction and unity.”

Here are just some examples of the vast array of holiday decor you can find at Steinhafels! As you can see we have it all–from delicate pieces to plush pillows you can throw on your sofas and recliners.

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So don’t let that big box of holiday decor stress you out! Organize the accessories by style, and try to give each room its own personality.

We post a quick and easy decor tip each Monday.  Check in next week for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.

You can email John at johnn@steinhafels.com if you live in the Kenosha/Racine area and are interested in exploring a new design project!

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DS Tip Of The Week: Chandeliers as a focal point, and how to hang them properly

When it comes to design, we often stick with what we know. Chandeliers as we traditionally know them are a necessity in dining rooms for most of the lighting. However, you don’t have to stop at this room alone. Chandeliers can also be a great focal point in living rooms, master bedrooms and bathrooms.

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This week’s Decorating Solutions Tip of the Week comes from Interior Designer Patti Stindt. Patti works at our beautiful new Madison East store, one of only 2 stores currently to have our beautiful new selection of chandeliers on display!

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Patti explains how versatile chandeliers can be. “Chandeliers give us an opportunity to create a beautiful focal point in spaces besides the dining room. Gone are the days of your ordinary light fixture that only provides us light. There are hundreds of options in many different styles that can make a statement in your room. Think of a chandelier as the piece of jewelry that pulls your whole outfit together!”

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Ooooh.. Jewelry! That’s a fun comparison.

There are some logistical issues to consider as well. Patti adds, “When choosing a chandelier, consider style of the space, how much light is needed for the space, and the scale of the light fixture compared to area it is suspended above. Typically we multiply the square footage by 1.5 to get the wattage needed for the room. Also, if it is hung above a dining room table, the bottom of the chandelier should be hung between 30-36″ above the table top. Lastly, put these fixtures on dimmers to create mood lighting!”

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Thanks for explaining that Patti! Our designers are hard at work on many more insightful tips for you. Check in next Monday for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.

Steinhafels Employee Takes the “Honor” Flight of His Life

The nation will take time out to honor the brave men and women who served our country this Veterans Day, Saturday, November 11. It’s a proud day for our country, but also a day that brings back difficult memories for many of our nation’s finest.

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Organizations like the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight are working to help ease the pain of those memories. The Honor Flight happens several times a year, and takes veterans (World War II, Korea, and Vietnam) to see their monuments in Washington D.C.

The day ends with a huge welcome home event at Mitchell International Airport. Steinhafels has partnered with the Honor Flight for years, through various donation drives, including the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s “Mail Call” program.

But this Steinhafels blog looks at the Honor Flight from an even more personal angle–through the eyes of a veteran who works for our company. Theron Kramer has been part of the Steinhafels work family for 5 years, and has a skilled role in our Corporate Warehouse.

Before his time with Steinhafels though, Theron served our country as an Army Sergeant–deploying to both Kuwait and Iraq during his time in the service. Theron is one of many veterans we are proud to call part of the Steinhafels family.

Theron had the chance to be a Guardian on this past weekend’s Honor Flight. He was kind enough to share little bit about the experience with us.

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Steinhafels: Thank you for your service! When did you serve?

Theron: I served with Bravo Company 2/128th Air Assault Infantry in the Wisconsin Army National Guard in August 2003. I was honorably discharged as a sergeant in Aug 2011 with Alfa Troop 1/105th Calvary.

How about the gentleman you escorted on the flight?

Theron: Mr. John Tilch served with 1st Infantry as a combat medic in Phuoc Pinh, Vietnam in 1967. Mr. Tilch was given a spot on the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight and needed a guardian for the trip. I was very honored that he had asked me to go with him.

Why did you decide to join the service?

I joined the army because of the September 11th attacks. I felt like I needed to do something to help.

What is it like to be on a Stars and Stripes Honor Flight?

The flight to Washington was filled with excitement and anticipation. The flight back, however, was filled with many emotions. Every veteran on the flight received “mail call” letters from back home.

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I had never been to Washington D.C. before, and didn’t know what to expect while touring the memorials. Each memorial left you with a different emotion. The World War II memorial felt a bit cheerful and triumphant while the Vietnam wall was very mournful. The Korean War memorial was more dark and eerie.

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What was the most emotional part of the journey?

In my opinion the welcome home at General Mitchell International Airport was the most emotional part of the trip. To see the large volumes of strangers, service members and family was so inspiring. Especially for Mr. Tilch, a Vietnam veteran, who didn’t get that ‘welcome home.’ This trip was for him, and I am filled with pride that he finally received the welcome home he deserves.

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Why is the Honor Flight so important?

I think events like the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight are so important because it’s necessary to remind veterans that their selfless acts were appreciated, and that their call to duty did not go unnoticed.

I want to express my extreme gratitude to the staff at St. Paul School and Parish for their generous contributions. I also wanted to acknowledge the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight for the outstanding job that they do. Thank you!

And thank you Theron, for being a wonderful employee, and an example to other young men and women who want to take that extra step to protect the freedoms we are so lucky to enjoy here in the United States.

Help Steinhafels continue its support for veterans during our Veterans Day Sale, which runs through the end of business on Friday, November 10. Steinhafels will donate 5% of all sales to Fisher House Wisconsin. The Fisher House Foundation provides a network of comfort homes, where military and veterans’ families can stay at no cost while a loved one is receiving treatment at the local VA.  

Also, Steinhafels is a proud Presenter of the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight “Mail Call” again this year. You can send a letter to a veteran on a 2018 flight! The Journal Sentinel will make a $10 donation for each letter received.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

attn: Mail Call

333 W. State St.

Milwaukee, WI 53203

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