Lifestylist® Suzanne Felber advises you on where to have a fantastic customer experience, and where you might want to avoid. As a lifestyle expert she can tell you where to go to have the time of your life!

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Lifestylist Advisory: Beautiful TX Lake House For Sale

Looking for the perfect home to enjoy lake front living all year long? Look no further - this beautiful 5 bedroom home is what you have been searching for!

Lifestylist® Suzanne Felber and photographer Lisa Stewart visited this week to stage, photograph and help the owner market their home. See why Lifestylist® Marketing can give you the edge you are looking for to help you sell more homes.

Take a look at the You Tube video of the home, or contact Norma K. Smith for more information.

Lifestylist Advisory on Inexpensive Summer Projects

Summer is officially here, and many of us are wondering how to keep the kids (or guests) entertained. When I was much younger, we used to go to the beach on Lake Erie with my Aunt Julie who is an artist. She always had great ideas on how we could do art projects using found objects, and we used to love making animals by gluing river rocks together then adding color and faces using Sharpie markers.
When I started my first company - Memory Merchandising - I wanted to stand out from the crowd so I made all of my own business cards using rubber stamps for an imprint that I then tinted using Prismacolor pencils. I've been told that people still have kept some of those because they thought they were so unique.
Today while I was web surfing I found two great websites full of ideas that can keep all of us busy for the entire year, if not more!
Sharpie Uncapped is a really fun site that has all kinds of ideas on how you can get creative with a Sharpie. I personally love the mugs, and think I may be heading out to Staples today to buy some new colors and play. I also love how they play up the talents of various artists and how they are really embracing the art community. If we had more companies like this the world might become a more colorful place.
Prismacolor has an amazing site as well, and I can't wait to spend more time on it. You can upload your works of art to be showcased on their site, and a feature I really love is the color coordinator. You can use a virtual color wheel and they will tell you which of their products matches that color.
Congratulations to both of these companies for having websites that just aren't about selling but offer great information that anyone can appreciate and use. I have some thank-you cards I need to send out - think I'll be trying some of their ideas and making some handmade ones! Lifestylist Designed greeting cards here I come!

'til Midnight at the Nasher

The good and bad news is that this Lifestylist® is super busy! Lots of new homes to design and give the Lifestylist® Designed touch to, products to develop, animals to rescue... there just never seems to be enough hours in the day. Life seems to be moving at warp speed, and before you know it summer is gone and I never took advantage of some of the great events Dallas has to offer.
When I heard about the series the Nasher Sculpture Center is holding this summer I decided it was time to slow down and take a night to sit under the stars. The 'til Midnight at the Nasher series is such a great idea - every third Friday through October you can go to the Nasher and enjoy a concert and movie in their garden. If you haven't had the opportunity to visit the Nasher it is a must see, and their garden is complete with beautiful works of art that are a joy to experience. You bring your own blankets to sit on, and beverages and food are available from the Nasher Cafe catering services provided by Wolfgang Puck.
Every evening is a different theme, and last night was the Wizard of Oz complete with a showing of the film. Emerald City - a 14 pc band entertained us and had everyone on their feet for most of the evening. The theming also carried through to specialty drinks such as "The Great and Powerful Oz", "Flying Monkey" and "Over the Rainbow". The very talented Lisa Stewart does a lot of photography for the Nasher, and she was in the know enough to pre-order a picnic basket for us which was an amazing deal. A bottle of great wine, salads, cheeses, bread and strawberries with a decadent dark chocolate dipping sauce made me a very happy participant in the evening.
Another great opportunity was that a guided tour of the Nasher was included as part of this event. Other museums in the area including the Dallas Museum of Art and Crow Collection made this event a true block party and you could take a progressive museum tour through all three. We had so much fun I did something that I've been thinking about doing for quite awhile - I became a member! This is the best way to truly take advantage of all the Nasher Sculpture Center has to offer.
It was so much fun to see young and old, people from every walk of life coming together to celebrate the arts. I can't wait until next month, and now I'm hoping my kids and grandkids will be able to come and enjoy an evening as well.

New Champion Homes are XTreme!

We did it! With a lot of help from the wonderful team at Champion Homes of Texas, Lifestylist Design Inc. was able to complete 4 model homes in a week's time. And the response has been tremendous - retailers have been flocking to the Champion Sales Center to see these amazing new XTreme floorplans.
This week really proved to me what a difference a great management team and leadership can make in the success of a company. I can't say enough about how everyone stepped up and did whatever needed to be done. Even though we had to work on Saturday and Sunday in 100 degree weather there wasn't one person who acted like there was any place they would rather be. The loyalty to their company and attention to detail really shows in every home that they build as well. No matter what price point the home was, it was still XTremely well constructed and I would be proud to call any of them my home.
If you are looking for and XTreme Home to call your own you should check out these new homes. Contact Marc Medders at 800-414-2605 for more information and tell him The Lifestylist® sent you!

DalTile Listens

There are days (actually most of them!) when I love being a Lifestylist®, and this week was a great one. I was able to work with the amazing team at Champion Homes of Texas and finish the XTreme Model Home Challenge, then I was invited to the corporate headquarters for DalTile to view some new products they are working on.
Honestly, I don't know why more companies don't ask for our help - being able to give input to DalTile helps all of us in the long run. They get to learn about what we need and haven't been able to find, and by learning about what DalTile is working on I'm able to be sure that my clients know about these amazing new and current products so they can take advantage of them as well.
DalTile has always done an amazing job of understanding the needs of designers and builders and delivering beautiful products that are exactly what the homeowner is looking for. After spending a few days with their team, I think I know know how they achieve this - they listen. The innovative new products they will be launching that we got to see are obviously the product of really listening to and understanding the lifestyle of today's buyer. With more people wanting the ease of maintenance that tile affords as well as it being so family and pet friendly, tile is going to become even more important in tomorrow's homes. I can't give everything away, but soon you will be seeing tile that is so simple to install even I could do it :) and they are using new technologies to produce glass and mixed materials into mosaics that are worthy of being hung in a museum, but you will be able to easily install them in your own home. It was like they could read my mind - things that I had only dreamed about being able to use in my homes will soon be a reality.
Tile can be very intimidating to a novice homeowner, and with so many beautiful choices it can be very hard to choose what is your favorite. DalTile has helped take some of the guesswork out of this by having an easy to use website full of ideas. They also have design centers around the country that are staffed with some of the most knowledgeable designers I've ever worked with, and they are full of inspirations on how you can use tile to create your own dream home. They were very helpful to me when I was working on the new Design Center for @home Builders that will be opening soon - if you have a chance to stop by you should. They also helped me design the great kitchen backsplash for the new model home that just opened at Frisco Ranch for American Custom Builders.
Now it's my turn to listen. I would love to hear about how you have used tile in your home. Feel free to contact us at: answers@lifestylist.com and share your beautiful rooms with us!

Shopping at IKEA The Lifestylist® Way

We are making progress!
On of the toughest things to do when you have to merchandise or stage a home quickly is find the right furniture for the space. I don't like to stock furniture because then you end up putting things that just aren't quite right into a space because you have them. Lucky for me, there is an IKEA in the area so after having no luck even with being able to rent and make budget for this client, I decided to see what I could find online. IKEA is truly a lifestyle, and as a Lifestylist® I know this is a great resource for designing homes with lots of personality.
In the last few years, the IKEA website has become very user friendly. It's well organized, easy to find what you are looking for by room, and they also have great inspiration photos which can be a huge help. A new to me feature is the Shopping List. You can add an item in your shopping list and by doing so and entering which store you'll be picking up at the site will then prepare a list that not only has a photo and cost of the item, it will also tell you specifically where in the store that item will be! If you have ever been in an IKEA store you know that because of the size of the stores and all of the great room vignettes it can easily take you an entire day to shop. But you'll never go hungry -they all have a great cafe that is as reasonably priced as their furniture in them and also a take out area if you are eating on the run.
With the help of the website I was able to make out a very detailed plan for each home and know exactly where I would find it and if it was in stock. When I arrived at the store I was able to pull everything and get it to the delivery window in 2 hours so I was thrilled! I think that was a record for me but I stayed focused and only bought what I knew I needed. When you are working on XTreme Homes with XTreme budgets the key is to only buy what you know you need or your budget can go off target in one shopping trip.
For you all not used to the IKEA experience - be warned - their great pricing comes at a cost. Most of their merchandise is "Flat box" which means it is designed to take up the minimum amount of space when it is being shipped. After you purchase the item most of it will have to be assembled, even the sofas so keep that in mind if you aren't especially great with a screwdriver. They do have outside companies you can contact to put your items together though but this would drive up your costs. The other thing is that you are literally shopping in a warehouse, and you have to pull the merchandise from the shelves and bring it up to the check out lines. This may not be a problem if you are only buying a wicker chair, but if you are buying houses of furniture be sure to bring help and a truck to take it home in. I used their delivery service but didn't have a great experience so I'd only use this as a last resort.
Everything got delivered yesterday, they are finishing up the houses today and hopefully I get to start making them look like home tomorrow! Can't wait to see how they end up.

Clueless About Customer Service: IKEA's Delivery Service

It always amazes me how one person with the wrong attitude can completely ruin an entire customer experience.
Lifestylist® Design is in the middle of the XTreme Model Home Challenge with Champion Homes of Texas, and I'm trying to design 4 model homes in less than a week on very tight budgets. I worked all weekend trying to get things in place and was thrilled when I discovered the IKEA website and how consumer-friendly they had made finding what you wanted online. You could create a shopping list, check stock at your local store and then print out a shopping list letting you even know what aisle the products could be found on. Everyone was really helpful, I got everything to the front of the store and arranged for delivery today and we were good to go!
Or so I thought, until I received a call from Angie with Advanced Delivery who handles all of IKEA's deliveries at least at the Frisco, TX store. This was at 7pm and she called to tell me my furniture would be delivered at 7:30pm. Not good news considering the delivery was to a place of business that closed at 5pm and I was told they would call and give me a 4 hr window of when it would be delivered. Angie pretty let me know it was my problem (she kept talking over me so I didn't have a chance to let her know what my issues where) and I'd have to deal with IKEA.
IKEA is always so customer focused, even though I know Advanced is a third party service I'm surprised IKEA would let a company that is so unprofessional represent them - especially when this is a company that will be going out to their customers homes.
Next time I think I'll go back to renting a Penske Truck and just doing it myself - at least then I know it will be delivered as promised.

Applause For Leslie's Pool Services!

Applause for John and Leslie's Pool Service in the Dallas/ Ft. Worth area!
This respectful, talented tech was able to undo all of the damage the last guy did to my pool equipment and was able to get my 1940's pool running like no which is no small feat. The heat and humidity yesterday was miserable, but John never complained and kept at it until he figured it all out.
If you need repairs done to any type pool, I absolutely recommend Leslie's and they are nationwide.

Defining Lifestylist®

One of the questions I always get asked is exactly what is a Lifestylist, and what is unique about the Lifestylist Lifestyle. The second most asked question is what makes me a Trailer Diva!

The Lifestylist philosophy is that “It’s all about You” - the clients life and style is what dictates how a Lifestylist works with you. My favorite example is I had a client in Phoenix, Arizona that was a major Phoenix Suns fan, and their team colors are orange and purple. The client wanted their entire home done in these colors. What they wanted is what they got, complete with a child’s room with a hardwood floor striped like a basketball court.

I just spoke to a friend who’s dog had just dug up her entire garden and her daughter slammed the door on the neighbor’s hand - all in about 30 minutes time. Her needs and lifestyle are completely different from my Son - no kids, no dogs, and lives in front of his computer. What my style is wouldn’t work well for either of them which is why I need to understand the client and what their “hot buttons” are. It’s takes extra time and sleuthing to achieve this - many times the client has trouble putting into words exactly what they are looking for but they know it when they see it. I take the responsibility very seriously - a person’s environment can truly change their lives in a positive or negative way. If someone is happy in their home their quality of life improves.

Next to being a mother, becoming a Lifestylist is one of the most rewarding things I’ve ever done. I’m looking forward to expanding the concept and what it offers in the years to come.

The Lifestylist® Advisory Service

Do you ever wonder where you can get great service or where you want to just stay away from because your experience might be everything you want it to be?

This is the place where the original Lifestylist® Suzanne Felber will share who goes above and beyond, and who you might just want to stay away from. We'll review every type of service, and if you have had an experience you would like to share, please let us know at: answers@lifestylist.com

We are looking forward to reward the people who go above and beyond as well as calling out the people who insist on making our experiences miserable. Enjoy!