Real Estate Staging / Home Staging Blog


It's CLEAR... 21 SIF RoundTables Across North America Are Going to REFRESH Our Industry!

 Yesterday both Chicago and Manhattan successfully held their respective Stage It Forward (SIF) ROUNDTABLE discussions.

Earlier today I spoke with Val Allocco who was the facilitator for in Manhattan. Val said that their group had about 15 attendees at the luncheon sponsored by American Furniture Rental. (THANK YOU AFR) Val will share her own sparkling account of the 3 hour Round Tabletable discussion they had here: TRI-STATE ROUND TABLE MEETUP - NOV. 16TH, 2007  I guess the fact that Manhattan is read for their NEXT round table... tells us that SIF is on to something here. 

On to the Chicago RoundTable...

IT ROCKED! In Chicago the event was graciously hosted by Brook Furniture with a wonderful lunch (and of course bottles of water.)  Due to space limitations we had to limit our group to 20. But I'm thrilled to say that we had a "full house". You talk about karma... at the last minute someone could not make it and there was another fellow stager anxious to fill the seat.

EVERYONE arrived early and we started right on time. One of the most interesting things was meeting other stagers that READ our words here in Stage It Forward, but are not blogging or commenting. There was a cross section of stagers with all types of background and years (some times months) of experience.The 2 hours flew by and we ended right on time. But the house would NOT clear. People hung around and talked one on one for another 1/2 hour.  The POSITIVE energy was electrifying.

I will share more of the actually content of the meeting in another post. But I will say that we came up with some FANTASTIC ideas... which we all can start working on IMMEDIATELY.  Other ideas will take more time to develop... but the seed was planted. Its ready for watering.

THANKS to all who took the time to share their ideas and passion... and I would like to personally again express my thanks to Brook Furniture Rentalyour commitment to the staging industry is fantastic. I know many of you are envious that some markets have Brook Furniture to work with... while unfortunately you can't use then in TYPICAL Brook fashion, they still have a message for you that I know will mean a lot to all SIF members. 

Turn on your speakers and click here for Brook's Message to SIF members.

Staging It Forward...


PS: These were 2 of 21 SIF RoundTables are scheduled across NORTH AMERICA... check here for the RoundTable closest to you. Please note... Today we added yet another location, CENTRAL FLORIDA will be hosted by Judy Kinkaid in February.

The next 2 SIF RoundTables (were ALL are welcome) will be:

Tuesday, November 27th
Facilitator: Margaret Ann Innis

EASTERN PA, DE, & Southern NJ
Friday, November 30th
Facilitator: Kate Hart

Comment balloon 26 commentsCraig Schiller • November 17 2007 04:16PM


Craig, it's been awesome to follow the extraordinary developments that have occurred this year through Stage It Forward.  Are we looking into the future for perhaps a Stage IT Forward Speaking Tour.... :)
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 - we are hoping for a full house here as well!  Let's prove hospitality originated in the South.... lol...
Posted by Melissa Marro, Jacksonville Real Estate and Home Staging (Keller Williams First Coast Realty - The Marro Team) almost 13 years ago
I liked the video.  Have you seen HelloWorld before?   Jess Rankin, Pickering Group   602-405-6878
Posted by Jess Rankin (Pickering Group) almost 13 years ago

Lola... so much of this is because of Active Rain. Stage It Foward has grown to be a microcasm of what we all enjoyed in the early days of AR. 

SIF owes so much to AR... and pioneers like you that tought/teach us what community can be.


Posted by Craig Schiller almost 13 years ago
Craig - You are right, the round table rocked!  I don't think it is something anyone should miss if they have the chance to go.
Posted by Kimberly Wester almost 13 years ago


I like what Jess Rankin said about the video, Perhaps you can do virtual SIF round Table Meetings or something in those lines, where you can log into and see the meeting live on your computer?

My web designer does them, I forgot what he calls them, but he basically sets up a web cam and has a meeting so those who can't make it to the meeting place, can still be part of it.

Hope all went well, it sounds like it did. I can't wait to read the minutes or your post.

Best Wishes,

Brian Bloom

Posted by Brian Bloom, All in One Staging Inc. - Home Staging Consultant, Redesign Expert ( 1-630-292-2710) almost 13 years ago
Craig - you've done such a great job! I look forward to reading your posts about the content of these gatherings.
Posted by Sharon Simms, St. Petersburg FL - CRS CIPS CLHMS RSPS (Coastal Properties Group International - Christie's International) almost 13 years ago

Thanks Craig for sharing. We already have 22 staging companies signed up to attend on November 30th- we always have room for more! KH

Posted by Kate Hart (Hart & Associates Staging and Design) almost 13 years ago

Well, Craig, my post is up and I've linked to yours.  Yesterday was incredible and I would encourage everyone to either look into the possibility of hosting a Round Table in their area, or looking for one that is already planned and in the works.

What an incredible experience and all as a result of your hard work and fabulous 'vision'!  Thank you for all that you do to both further and promote the staging industry.  You are a dynamic force and have certainly kept your promise to 'stage it forward'!


Posted by Val Allocco, HSE; ASHSR - Home Stager, for Manhattan, Brooklyn & Long Island (Staged 2 Sell New York & Long Island) almost 13 years ago

Brian... what an AWESOME IDEA.

Kate... I know you will do your part to create the same powerful exprience Calie, Val and I have felt.

Vale... Yes it has been hard work. But the VISION is all of ours. I remember some long conversations with some stagers a little over a year ago. Do you?


Posted by Craig Schiller almost 13 years ago
Yes, yea, yeah, right on, GO TEAM! This is so good to hear. Thanks for letting us know this went so well. It will be great to hear what others do at each of their Round Table Discussions and to see where this propels us.
Posted by Yvonne Root, Home Stager - Northern Arizona (rooms b.y. root) almost 13 years ago

Craig-It was a wonderful, exciting couple of hours.  We hated to leave early and are sure we missed lots more valuable, interesting discussion.  We non-bloggers did love meeting the bloggers in person, and as we said sort of felt like we knew you active bloggers from our reading.  Have to say it feels a little voyeuristic.  I do comment sometimes, at least.

You and Brook did an excellent job with everything.  Everyone was so gracious.  I'm sure all you who know Craig well, can clearly imagine the energy coming from him! Wow!

You are all such generous, giving souls and personalities, all your meetings will be, and in Val's case were, spectacular successes.

Best of luck to you all, and thank you for all you do.


Posted by Joan Staker (Time to Stage) almost 13 years ago


The HelloWorld site looks AWESOME. I think we just might start using it!

What a great idea.



Posted by Craig Schiller almost 13 years ago


Just wanted to thank you for the incredibly informative round table event in Chicago. It was wonderful to meet you...connecting with others in the industry.

 I took so much away from our short time together. Priceless information! Being one of the "new kids on the block" is not any easy situation. "Might even turn me a bit green" from time to time!!! 

Look forward to seeing you again in the hopefully (near) future..




Posted by Gina Metzger, ASP, IAHSP, Inside Out Home Staging, gina@homesta almost 13 years ago

Craig, what you are doing with the staging industry is great.  I can't wait to use you on my next home that needs it. 

Posted by Judy Greenberg, Coldwell Banker - Buffalo Grove - Long Grove Homes (Coldwell Banker Long Grove) almost 13 years ago

Craig, Thank you so much for orchestrating the SIF Round Tables. What a wonderful and exciting time we had. In my staging world I felt like I was meeting celebrates when I met James Frazier, Kimberly Westerly and you. How wonderful it was for those who where there to come together to share ideas and frustrations. I only wish we could have stayed longer. Maybe next time we could make it a half day event, or I like the idea of having webinar through SIF.  Also, a big Thank You to Brook Furniture for their hospitality in letting us have the event at their show room!

Susan Lynk-Lynk Home Transformations

Posted by Anonymous almost 13 years ago

What a great video from Brook.  Oh how I wish they were in my area.  Perhaps I should e-mail them of the need. 

Sheron & I have discussed doing a Central Calif., SJ Valley roundtable.  Anyone interested?


Posted by Ginger Foust, Home Stager Oakhurst CA, Dream Interior Redesign & Staging (Certified Staging Professional) almost 13 years ago

Ginger - Shell Brodnax is in the Central Valley  -I just wrote to her and suggested she (or someone else) do one for that region.  The market, pricing, trends, etc. are vastly different in your region that in Sacramento - and the CV region could use their own, is my guess.

- Jennie

Posted by Jennie Norris, Denver Regions Premier Home Staging Resource, (Sensational Home Staging) almost 13 years ago

Hi Craig,

Not sure who divided up the regions for meetings but my suggestion from one that works in and trains in Northern Calif is that you need more than one location.  I already wrote to Shell about having a Central Valley meeting - as Ginger mentions above - and truly, the Staging market in Sacramento is very different than the Bay Area, which is different than the Central Valley, etc.  You could easily have several RT discussions that serve the Nothern Calif market and that is my suggestion. 

If the purpose of these RT discussions is to pull from that market and talk about trends, needs, etc. - then to have it be too broad of a scope waters that down, plus people may not be able to travel 4 hours or more to meet.  Just a thought.  Roseville is hardly the center of the NCal universe - although I am proud of where I live and work! - and I know it was placed there because that is where Lori is - but to truly get what you are looking for in a RT forum there needs to be more than just one.  Of course there have to be volunteers to step up and organize the meeting. . .

- Jennie

Posted by Jennie Norris, Denver Regions Premier Home Staging Resource, (Sensational Home Staging) almost 13 years ago

Jennie, I realize that Shell is in Stockton, and that's certainly closer to Sac. than Fresno. I agree with your statement to Craig that long distance travel is not appealing at all. 2-2.5 hours is about my max. for travel one way.  I know that there are a few other AR stagers in the Fresno area, so we'll see if anyone responds.  Thanks for thinking of us down here. 


Posted by Ginger Foust, Home Stager Oakhurst CA, Dream Interior Redesign & Staging (Certified Staging Professional) almost 13 years ago

Ginger and Jennie,

They way we picked the cites was purley on the fact that people volunteered to host them. The facilitaors just stepped up to their own plates.

If we can expand to other ares... that is fine. What makes these "work" is that the are all the "same" conversion that SPRING from the same base questions. The wonderful thing is that each area has unique insight that collectively helps us all get a bigger picture.



Posted by Craig Schiller almost 13 years ago

Craig, to get back on track, Linda and I thoroughly enjoyed our trip to Chicago from here in Indianapolis. It wound up being about a 4 hour drive, but just the ability to meet and talk to all of the others in attendance was very fulfilling and made the long trip worth it all.  Thanks once again for facilitating this gathering and I believe that 21 SIF round tables is only the start.  As time passes and people see the enjoyment and education derived from these meeting, more sessions will develop.  As a last thought, it was very enjoyable to spend the hours we did with this group and no one knew or cared what affiliations we have, it was simply an open exchange of thoughts and ideas from a bunch of people that love what they do.

Posted by Gary Barnett, Home Matters Property Stylist Group, Indianapolis (Home Matters) almost 13 years ago
Very encouraging to hear such positive feedback.  We're looking forward to the event here in North Texas too, January 10th 2008.
Posted by Karen Otto, Plano Home Staging, Dallas Home Staging, (Home Star Staging) almost 13 years ago

I can't wait for the one at the end of the month that includes PA.

Kim Dillon, Creative Eye Home Staging

Posted by Kim Dillon (Creative Eye Home Staging) almost 13 years ago


It is always amazing to see a vision become a reality. Back in the early thoughts of Staging It Forward I am not sure that we could have imagined the powerful impact it would have. I believe that this is a great tool to help us grow our companies and truly get the message of staging out to all.

It was wonderful meeting the people of AR, and as always working with AFR. Val did a great job and of course when you put 15 women in a room things are bound to get out of control, we could have chatted ALL DAY! Looking forward to the next meeting.

Keep up the great work..and as always keep staging it forward

Happy Thanksgiving

Phyllis Pafumi 

Posted by Phyllis Pafumi, ReStyled to Sell Staging Homes NJ (ReStyled to Sell Home Staging New Jersey) almost 13 years ago
I am so happy to hear that your RT meeting was a success.  I am looking forward to the Southern California RT meeting Wednesday, January 9th.  It is a great way to start off the new year!
Posted by Janice Sutton, Home Stager - Temecula Murrieta (1st Stage Property Transformations ) almost 13 years ago