Real Estate Staging / Home Staging Blog


What has ActiveRain Done Lately? How About Unifying an Entire Industry?

This past Saturday something small yet amazing happened in an industry... and it is all because of ActiveRain. The home stager's group Stage It Forward turned one year old. Now this might not seem like much, for those of you are NOT home stagers, but for us this is remarkable and HUGE. For prior to ActiveRain and the group Stage It Forward (now commonly called SIF) there was no unified place for home stagers to discuss the issues facing their businesses and their industry.

Stage It Forward gave us a forum to connect, communicate and grow. Every home stager that has entered this site has left with something more.... something that they could use to move their businesses forward.

Other new organizations have started, like the Real Estates Staging Association, and have found SIF to be a great platiform to share a common commitment to champion the possibilities of home staging.

And while at times our conversation is filled with passion (OK, YES... YES... I should say "heated". Because at time that IS what it is.) we really have come a long way.

So I am THRILLED to announce that MORE is to come! Now with over 1,100 members posting nearly 100 posts a week to the group... we are a busy place and we are only going to get busier. There is strength in our numbers!

In honor of the 1st year anniversary, we have been working on some practicle SIF Gifts for our fellow SIF members.

The first gift is to to announce a new "personality" has joined our ranks. SIF STUFF is their name. SIF STUFF will pop in from time to time to share important industry news. Like he is doing today... In fact, SIF STUFF is out there passing out the rest of the surprises and bunch of useful gifts (5 in fact) in their blog today. So go here and read: Happy Birthday Stage-it-Forward... Here are 5 Gifts for YOU! That post will direct you on to all the other goodies we have planned... and let me tell you there are some BIG announcemnts. Also... let me say "Sorry" in advance, all that we have to share will have you popping all over the internet to check out what is taking place. But we think it is worth it.

So one behalf of all the members of Stage It Forward I would like to extend the sincerest of thanks to ActiveRain. The next time someone asks if blogging on AR works? You can say not only does it work... it has given an INDUSTRY a voice.

Staging It Forward...



Comment balloon 51 commentsCraig Schiller • November 05 2007 06:12PM


Congratulations on your one year anniversary. We too celebrated our one year anniversary of blogging. All things are good. LOL
Posted by Jay McGillicuddy, Real Estate Broker (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Verani Realty) almost 13 years ago
Interesting perspective from an emerging field. Congratulations!
Posted by Sam White, Integrated Marketing - Bryan College Station, almost 13 years ago


Thank you and Active Rain for creating this forum and giving our industry a collected voice. You are a great inspiration, leader and friend. Be proud of the accomplishments that you have made and know that we love and support you. The future of this industry will come from the joining together of the people that make it strong and you have given us the tool to take it forward. Congratulations on your one year anniversary SIF! Let's celebrate!

Love, KH

Posted by Kate Hart (Hart & Associates Staging and Design) almost 13 years ago
Great and congrats this network is really a big plus in so many ways
Posted by Charlie Ragonesi, Homes - Big Canoe, Jasper, North Georgia Pros ( almost 13 years ago
Craig - For me SIF has been a huge resource, I've learned so much and made some great friends in the process.  Looking forward to the next year!
Posted by Maureen Maureen almost 13 years ago
Congrats on the accomplishment, I am sure you will be hitting the 2 year mark with many more members in many more markets
Posted by Scott Webster, GTA Real Estate (Sutton Group-Associates Realty Inc. Brokerage) almost 13 years ago

Congratulations Craig!

I'm not a stager but I have really enjoyed all your posts! Thank you!

Posted by Monika McGillicuddy, Southern NH & the Seacoast Area (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Verani Realty) almost 13 years ago

it has given an INDUSTRY a voice.

Well spoken Craig. Thank you for this post and all that preceded it. Thanks for starting the group Stage It Forward and for being a good steward of said group. I join with you in thanking the Rain gods for the opportunity to have a gathering place wherein the "voice of stagers" can be heard.

There once was a fellow named Craig,

Who had an idea like an egg. 

He coddled and nurtured,

He read, read, and featured,

Till at last SIF Stuff had a leg.

Now standing and walking,

SIF Stuff is talking,

And Home Staging gains a new keg. 

A keg of dynamite that is. SIF Stuff is going to blow the lid off the Home Staging Industry. We can all whisper in our respective corners but the shout will be loud. Thanks Craig!  

Posted by Yvonne Root, Home Stager - Northern Arizona (rooms b.y. root) almost 13 years ago

Craig:  In the past year, I have learned and grown my business so much through SIF!

Thank you Craig for all your hard work this past year in making SIF what it is today and with your talent and God given brilliant ideas....i can't wait to see what wonderful things are in store for SIF in the future!

Posted by Teresa Meyer, Home Staging Cincinnati-OH. (Cincinnati Home Stager) almost 13 years ago


Thank you for all you do for our industry. I have yet to come to SIF and not learn something valuable I can use for my business. So keep on staging it forward.......

Posted by Anthea Click, Nashville Home Stager - Selling Nashville, TN homes quickly! (Fresh Perspectives - almost 13 years ago

Craig - Thank you for SIF and the space it provides all of us in the staging industry to share our collective voices; as well as a place consumers and those in the real estate industry to come and learn and hear (read) more of what we have to say. 


Posted by Jackie Peraza, Home Stager - Framingham, Massachusetts (Perceptions AdverStaging(TM), LLC) almost 13 years ago
Craig.. what you have done here has changed the Staging Industry.  You have blasted us off to success.  SIF has offered a place to talk freely, sometimes too freely, but all in all, a place to learn and grow.  You can not put a price tag on that experience and knowledge... and for that, I say "Happy Birthday SIF... it has truly changed my life and to that I am eternally grateful." :)))
Posted by Lori Kim Polk, Home Stager - Roseville, Sacramento ( Premiere Home Staging : Home Staging Services) almost 13 years ago
Craig - I just want to echo everyone who has already commented and say thank you for your commitment, sharing and passion for our industry. 
Posted by Kathy Alexander, Home Stager Camas WA, Home Staging Southwest WA (GreatStages Home Staging and Redesign) almost 13 years ago

Craig, you have done so much for this industry, especially helping newbies along to better understand the level of quality expected to further the growth of the industry.  You've done a fabulous job making us think objectively and creatively, and for that I thank you.  I'm looking forward to our regional round table, and hope to be an asset in continuing to move this industry forward.  Keep up the great leadership work!


Posted by Susan Smith (Rooms That Work LLC) almost 13 years ago
Craig - you're right. AR has provided a much need rallying point for many of us. We all become more unified, and better informed, through our networking here....Congrats on the 1-year anniversary!
Posted by Rich Jacobson, Your Kitsap County WA Real Estate Broker (Fathom Realty West Sound) almost 13 years ago

Craig - whatever would we do without you?!  You have done more for the Home Staging industry than anyone that I can think of!  You have always been the 'voice of reason' here on AR; you never resort to negativity or 'smear tactics', and have been so generous with sharing everything that you know about the industry. Now, you have simply outdone yourself!  Look at all that you are creating from this one idea!  Home Staging will GROW and PROSPER because you are using every resource that you have to make sure that it does...........

I remember when you started this wonderful group and the reasoning behind it.  Happy 1st Birthday SIF and thank YOU, Craig, for creating it!


Posted by Val Allocco, HSE; ASHSR - Home Stager, for Manhattan, Brooklyn & Long Island (Staged 2 Sell New York & Long Island) almost 13 years ago
Craig... congrats on your group's one year anniversary and for becoming one of the most popular groups here on AR, it's well deserved.
Posted by marti garaughty, a highly caffeinated creative type... ( almost 13 years ago


Congratulations on the one year anniversary of SIF. We had lots of lofty expectations when ActiveRain launched the groups component. Your leadership in that group has made it everything we thought a group could become. The fact that it has become a rallying point for an entire industry is well beyond our expectations and a testament to what ActiveRain can be.

So while you are certainly welcome, it is our pleasure to have you and the entire staging industry as such a vibrant part of our community.  

Posted by Bob Stewart, ActiveRain Ambassador (ActiveRain) almost 13 years ago
And from Nova Scotia, Canada I thank you for making me feel at home, for creating and supporting a place to bounce creative ideas and learn more than ever thought possible.  I love the spirit and integrity in which you conduct your business which is why I feel you are truly the head of the staging class!
Posted by Tina Parker, CNE, REDM, SRES, CSP Home Staging REALTOR, Halifax (Keller Williams Select Realty) almost 13 years ago
Craig ~ Congratulations on the one year anniversary.  In the few short months that I have been a member, I have learned so much - most of it from your group and the generous people that contribute to it.
Posted by Kathy Passarette, L.I. Staging/Decorating (Creative Home Expressions) almost 13 years ago

Happy Anniversary SIF!  I'm so thankful for stumbling upon AR and for being introduced to this's been a great place to learn and share with everyone!  Thanks so much!  Can't wait to see what the next year will bring!



Posted by Abby Roselli, Staten Island Home Stager (ALR Home Staging and Showcasing, LLC) almost 13 years ago
A huge Thank You to Craig, He and Marci were the first to welcome me to AR and made me feel right at home. Until last week I was alone in my staging career, or at least from my Association. Now I have many many fellow redesigners and stagers to call mine. I apprciate all the help I have gotten here and the friendships made as well. I give me a place tro come for help when I am stumped or to present pictures of my work, or to vent and still keep sane. Happy Annivery SIF,,,Keeping blogging everyone!(from New Brunswick Canada)
Posted by Nicola Lindsay, CRSS (Nicola Lindsay ReDesign and Home Staging) almost 13 years ago

Cheers, Craig and congrats! As a newbie who has been hanging on every word at SIF, I am so grateful to everyone for sharing.  Thanks for the inspiration, and as I gain more experience I will also SIF!

Planning to contact Karen Otto for the Texas meeting!


Posted by Kathy Riggle, Houston Home Staging (STAGING SMART N SOLD) almost 13 years ago
Happy Anniversary, Craig!  You've not only put stagers on the main stage, you've added value to the thousands of REALTORS who watch your posts.
Posted by Sharon Simms, St. Petersburg FL - CRS CIPS CLHMS RSPS (Coastal Properties Group International - Christie's International) almost 13 years ago
Congratulations on your milestone!
Posted by Paul Warner -- Orange County, CA Appraiser (Warner & Associates) almost 13 years ago
Craig, congrats to the SIF group.
Posted by Brian Hoots (Real Living Speckman Realty, Inc. ) almost 13 years ago
Congrats.  where have you been hiding?
Posted by Teresa Boardman (Boardman Realty) almost 13 years ago
Happy Anniversary. As a REALTOR, I enjoy reading the staging posts. Thanks for sharing with us =)
Posted by Lisa Hill, Daytona Beach Real Estate (Florida Property Experts) almost 13 years ago
Congratulations SIF. I also enjoy reading the posts in this group and have found the information here invaluable for myself and my clients. Keep up the great work!
Posted by Jennifer Wilson, Agent Solutions (Agent Solutions) almost 13 years ago

very cool. looking forward to many more.




Posted by Cindy Lin, Host, The Home Staging Show podcast (Staged4more School of Home Staging) almost 13 years ago
Woo HOO SIF!!!  I have finally found a place to be able to learn w/o criticism; and to write my heart out about the value of home staging.  So much to say . . . no better place to say it!
Posted by Karen Dembsky, Atlanta Home Staging (Peachtree Home Staging LLC, Home Staging in Atlanta, GA) almost 13 years ago

Craig.... I wish my computer hadn't of died!  I would send you the email that I sent to you that said..... We are all waiting on you to start the staging group! I'm so glad to be a part of this network of wonderful stagers- Happy Birthday SIF!  Hey Maureen, Val& Leslie  - should I sing?  Please dont yall call Paula, Randy or Simon - I'm too old!


Posted by Marci Toliver, Anderson SC, Spartanburg,Greenville SC, Home Staging (438-4642) almost 13 years ago
Interesting how this has all happened isn't it? Thanks for the post.
Posted by Bob & Carolin Benjamin, East Phoenix Arizona Homes (Benjamin Realty LLC) almost 13 years ago

Happy Birthday, SIF.  What a great accomplishment. You should be extremely proud!  With all the great contributions, this is one strong organization.  Together we're better.


Posted by Kathy Nielsen, Atlanta Georgia Home Stager ( almost 13 years ago
Congrats.  It is long overdue that we in the real estate industry (all aspects) join together for more than just a couple of conventions.  Good job. 
Posted by Lane Bailey, Realtor & Car Guy (Century 21 Results Realty) almost 13 years ago

Craig - Congrats on the one-year anniversary.  I've learned a lot from the staging posts I've read here, and will continue to learn from all the great posts your group of stagers puts together for us.

Yvonne - AWESOME poem you penned!!


Posted by Ann Cummings, Portsmouth NH Real Estate Preferrable Agent (RE/MAX Shoreline - NH and Maine) almost 13 years ago
A Big, Beautiful, Happy Birthday to this dynamic Group!  May the future continue to unfold many excellent and exciting opportunities!
Posted by Lola Audu, Audu Real Estate~Grand Rapids, MI ~Welcome Home! (Lola Audu~Audu Real Estate~Grand Rapids, MI Real Estate) almost 13 years ago

Craig, a big THANK YOU for all your leadership, hard work and effort you've put into this, and for motivating others to get involved.  Everyone will benefit from this endeavor -- stagers, homeowners, RE agents, and anyone else connected to the industry. May good things continue to come to you.


Posted by Maureen Bray Portland OR Home Stager ~ Room Solutions Staging, "Staging Consultations that Sell Portland Homes" (Room Solutions Staging, Portland OR) almost 13 years ago


Your blog was the first I checked out the day I found AR. It's still the first one I check out each day. I have found new friends, learned much, been dismayed, felt proud and found new confidence in my career. Thank you so much! I'm planning on hanging out here for a long time to come.




Posted by Nonnie Ranstrom - StagingWorks almost 13 years ago
Craig - When I joined ActiveRain, your blog was a great example of how to blog and how to use images in posts. That SIF has had so much success is no surprise -- it has leadership with great passion and vision, and so many wonderful stagers that have shared their expertise with us in the Rain. Congrats on your one-year anniversary!!
Posted by John Novak, Henderson, Las Vegas and Summerlin Real Estate (Keller Williams Realty The Marketplace) almost 13 years ago

Awesome achievement here Craig

YOU are the father of SIF and we are forever grateful! I plan on eating a big piece of chocolate cake in your honor.

Posted by Karen Otto, Plano Home Staging, Dallas Home Staging, (Home Star Staging) almost 13 years ago


Congrats...I'm glad your business has thrived from AR exposure...keep it up my amigo!

Posted by Neal Bloom, Realtor CRS-Weston FL Real Estate (Brokered by eXp Realty LLC) almost 13 years ago
Congratulations Craig. AR is a great site and worth the time and effort!
Posted by Al Maxwell, Real Estate Agent (Keller Williams) almost 13 years ago
Craig, Congrats on a significant achievement!
Posted by Jeanean Gendron, Specializing in Selling Unique Properties (The Address Realty) almost 13 years ago
Craig - happy to see some direction and support for everyone to use here in the rain. It won't be long before real estate merchandising will be in full stride! Gosh has it been a year already? Congratulations!!!
Posted by Sheron Cardin, ARTIST - A Home Stager/Sellers Best Friend! (California Moods Inc) almost 13 years ago

Congratulations Craig!

Great job keeping it all together and creating camaraderie!

To another great year!


Posted by Nickie Rothwell (Get Staged 2 Sell) almost 13 years ago
WOW You have accomplished so much in a year! I am all for anything that anyone can do to bring positive results to the industry we all love. You certainly do that!! Keep up the amazing leadership! Still want you as our Illinois state president for RESA and no I wont stop asking.LOL Love to ya
Posted by Shell Brodnax, CEO- RESA (Real Estate Staging Association) almost 13 years ago

Craig, Congratulations for such a successful 1st Year!

Just think what will be achieved during the 2nd year!


Posted by Leslie Godbold, Motivation Speaker, Radio host "Positively Living" (WZGM AM1350 Independent Asheville Radio) almost 13 years ago

Craig, I've watched this group grow from the beginning and have been very impressed with the way the stagers have come together here on AR. And you guys have also provided me with some of the most heated discussions EVER on AR. And for that I thank you. I LOVE passionate people.

Congrats on this milestone. Your little vision has grown up.

Posted by Bryant Tutas, Selling Florida one home at a time (Tutas Towne Realty, Inc and Garden Views Realty, LLC) almost 13 years ago
Congratulations on reaching this milestone.
Posted by Sally Zatkoff, Making a Difference (Berkshire Hathaway Home Services PenFed Realty) almost 13 years ago
Craig, I can only echo what every one has said. I appreciate all you have done to bring our community together, and know it is only going to get better. Thank you.
Posted by Roberta Anderson, Hearth & Home Staging, Staging Kitsap County (Hearth & Home Staging) almost 13 years ago