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design ✦ improve ✦ garden ✦ live

welcome spring


real estate issue

HOME MATTERS real estate trends staging to sell GARDEN DELIGHTS historic garden day outdoor retreats SPRING 2019

Doing whatever it takes to sell your home!

Scott Avis, REALTOR Mobil: 540.529.1983

Office: 540.989.4555




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your source for backyard entertainment SEATING GROUPS | DINING SETS BARSTOOLS | FIRE PITS | UMBRELLAS CHAISE LOUNGES & MORE! 3 1 1 2 M e l r o s e Av e . | R o a n o k e , VA 2 4 0 1 7 540.345.7665 | 1 0

Award Winning Custom In Ground Pool Builder R o a n o ke Va l l e y H O M E S p r i n g 2 0 1 9

CONTENTS Roanoke Valley HOME Spring 2019



62 features

showcase home

THE REAL DEAL IN THE ROANOKE VALLEY The state of real estate

FIRST HOME FOR A HOMETOWN GIRL Making it her own with colorful collections




FINANCIAL FITNESS Get in financial shape before you buy



Cover photo by Kevin Hurley at the home of Whitney Norbo




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©2019 BHH Affiliates, LLC. An independently owned and operated franchisee of BHH Affiliates, LLC. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of HomeServices of America, Inc.® Equal Housing Opportunity.



Landscaping • Seeding & sodding • Hydroseeding • Lawn Care Paver driveways • Paver walkways • Paver patios • Tree services Retaining walls • Paver & Retaining wall repair • Firepits Outdoor living spaces • Custom stonework • Erosion control • Mulch blowing

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S PR I NG 2019


41 SITTING PRETTY Outdoor furnishings



74 2019 DESIGN SERIES: CREATIVE SPACES Local brokers share personal spaces that inspire them BY KATHERINE FULGHUM KNOPF

76 DOUBLE DUTY FURNITURE Multi-use pieces for home and work BY ALYSSA MERCADANTE


34 ADVENTURES IN UPCYCLING Repurposing heirloom pieces



66 THE ART OF LIGHT Trends in replacement windows BY NOELLE MILAM




79 LOVIN’ LIFE IN THE MOUNTAINS Historic Garden Day in Roanoke


38 TOASTING BOURBON Single barrel libations for spring BY VICTOR MILLNER

71 NEIGHBORHOOD GET-TOGETHERS Entertaining friends and neighbors BY MARSHA GALE


82 ALISON CONTE Co-Chair of the Art Go Bloom event at the Taubman Museum

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EDITOR’S note “Do you think it will rain?” My dad used to ask that question, to be humorous, after we'd had a long rainy spell or an epic deluge. The rain the Roanoke Valley has endured throughout the last year has been historical and no laughing matter. As I write this, we have enjoyed three sunny days in a row… it’s been glorious. I can only hope that by the time this April/May issue is in your hands, we've enjoyed many more days of sun, warmer temperatures and a full-on greening of the Valley. The Spring issue of Roanoke Valley HOME is my favorite. From cover-to-cover I can see the colors and vivacity of the new and most tender of seasons. Trees are blossoming, flowers are blooming, the daylight lasts longer. Neighbors are out and about, spring sports begin, it’s as if everything is suddenly bustling about outdoors. Just as the days start to warm up, so does the real estate season. This issue is dedicated to inform and advise on all matters related to successfully buying and/or selling a home. Financial questions are answered; interest rates are discussed. Local realtors weigh in on what buyers desire most and what is most discouraging in the homes they view. Spring is the perfect season to replace windows that have struggled through their last drafty winter. “The Art of Light”


explains energy efficiency, maintenance and the latest trends in replacement windows. Improve the functionality inside your home with versatile furnishings that serve a dual purpose and multiply practicality. “Sitting Pretty” will help outfit your patio or deck with comfortable and weather friendly furniture. To make the most of any size outdoor space, we’ve got ideas to share about carving out just the right sized space for reading and relaxing. And once your outdoor area is ready, invite the neighbors for a casual catch up after being cooped up inside all winter, Culinary Corner offers ideas to keep it relaxed and simple. “Lovin’ Life in the Mountains” is the theme of this year’s Historic Garden Day in Roanoke. Enjoy our sneak peek and a brief overview of the five homes featured in this year’s tour and read about the events surrounding Garden Day on Saturday, May 4th. “Hope springs eternal in the human breast: Man never is, but always to be blest.”—Alexander Pope The season upon us is one of optimism and as you make your way through this issue, my hope is you will be inspired by design, motivated to improve and take a little time to daydream in the garden—love the life you live! Anne Marie Poore

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Risk Management and Insurance for Business and Family

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Fashion Show with Virginia Tech’s Fashion Design Students & Area Boutiques | Virginia Museum of Fine Arts ArtMobile High Tea at Hotel Roanoke | Brunch at Morning Brew Coffee Company | Specialty Tours | Floral Workshops & Demos

110 Salem Ave SE, Downtown Roanoke | 540.342.5760 r vhomemaga zine .com 17


Interior | Design | Flooring | Cabinetry Lighting | Furniture | Decor | Blinds & Shades

VOLUME 12 ISSUE 2 PUBLISHER Julie Pierce EDITOR Anne Marie Poore ART DIRECTOR Edwana Coleman

Serving Smith Mountain Lake, Southwest & Central VA Monday - Friday: 8am - 5pm All other times by appointment only

(540) 719-1431 | 12925 Booker T Washington Hwy, Suite 102, Hardy, VA 24101

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CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Charlotte A.F. Farley Marsha Gale Katherine Fulghum Knopf Alyssa Mercadante Noelle Milam Victor Millner Christina Moore Amelia Poore Jane Rennyson Deborah Sirockman Chuck Taylor PHOTOGRAPHER Kevin Hurley GRAPHIC DESIGNER Donna Collins OPERATIONS MANAGER Colleen Miller ADVERTISING SALES Julia Belvin Lisa Bowers Anne Marie Poore SUBSCRIPTIONS

Roanoke Valley HOME is published five times annually by West Willow Publishing Group, LLC. For an annual subscription, please send $20 and your name, address and telephone number to: Roanoke Valley HOME 2003 Graves Mill Road, Suite B, Forest, VA 24551 For advertising information please call (434) 386-5667 or To discuss coverage of an event relating to home or garden, please contact Roanoke Valley HOME at


Vera Dickerson

Josh Manning

Barbara Daub

540.904.3783 | 1102 Brandon Ave. | Roanoke VA 24015 A place where everyone knows your name. 1 8

Copyright 2019 by West Willow Publishing Group, LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without written permission from West Willow Publishing Group, LLC. All pictorial material reproduced in this magazine, whether in a produced ad or by itself, has been accepted on the condition that it is with the knowledge and prior consent of the photographer or the artist concerned. As such, West Willow Publishing Group, LLC is not responsible for any infringement of copyright or otherwise arising out of publication thereof. The information contained herein has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable. However, West Willow Publishing Group, LLC makes no warrant to the accuracy or reliability of this information. Opinions expressed in this magazine are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of ownership or management.

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Experience the difference Landscaping is an extension of your home. It’s your vision. With attention to detail, dependable maintenance and a commitment to quality, we strive to meet that vision. You will experience the difference.

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real estate issue

roanoke valley real estate



It’s no secret that the Roanoke Valley is a wonderful place to live. Its scenic mountain views, numerous outdoor activities and less hectic lifestyle has made this area a hotspot for younger generations just starting out, to retirees looking for a quiet place to call home after finishing up long careers. Perhaps the most important draw for people in the area is the low cost of living and the affordability of real estate. The average home price in Roanoke is $133,000, 28 percent below the national average. With all the positive changes that have occurred in Roanoke in the past few years, now may be a great time to take that next step towards owning a home. 2 0

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A city expanding

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Finding a house is just the beginning, making it YOUR HOME is the perfect ending.

Roanoke is a growing city with a workforce that is increasing in number each year. Botetourt County has made successful efforts in recruiting companies to either relocate to the area or expand their current business. Its location along Interstate 81, proximity to prestigious universities and lower taxes have proven to be a great reason to have a business in Roanoke. The Virginia Tech/Carillion Heath Sciences and Technology Campus is a major source of growth for the city. By 2020 it plans to employ 3,147 people—an increase of 85 percent over those currently employed. A boom in new breweries has also contributed to the city’s expansion—the area’s high water quality boosts beer production—and the popularity of outdoor lifestyles enjoyed by locals has bolstered the craft culture. Breweries are promoting their businesses as not to be missed after a day-long hiking, paddling and cycling adventures. The city is promoting a lifestyle to go along with that new job you may be considering in the area. According to Kit Hale, Managing Partner at MKB Realtors in Roanoke, “The Roanoke region is doing a nice job of promoting our area as an outdoor destination. Resources like Roanoke Outside Foundation, Go Outside Festival and efforts by the Roanoke Regional Chamber are focusing on our beautiful valley and surrounding areas.” Walter Grewe, Certified Residential Specialist at Long and Foster Realty agrees, saying “Roanoke is becoming known more and more for its quality of life for residents of all ages.” Ultimately, this growth and development has encouraged a variety of people to call Roanoke home and created new housing demand that enlivens the overall state of the housing market. What buyers want

Start to finish, Amy Cullen and MKB. cell (540) 525-2992 | office (540) 989-4555

2 2

Demand in Roanoke is centered around urban living, says Hale. “Young people are gravitating towards older neighborhoods where walkability and socialization are prevalent. Whether it’s downtown living or areas like Raleigh Court, Grandin Court or the Daleville Town Center, I believe the demand will continue to be more focused on densely populated areas of our region,” attracting the attention of an important group of buyers to the market this year—the millennials. Hale adds, “We see millennials as having the R o a n o ke Va l l e y H O M E S p r i n g 2 0 1 9

THE VALLEY’S LARGEST LOCALLY OWNED REAL ESTATE FIRM For more than 46 years, giving back to our community and profession has been the cornerstone of our success. We believe that in life and in business, you get more than you give. Our expertise includes residential, commercial, land, property management, relocation and mortgage services. Service makes the difference in relocation and MKB, REALTORS® has been offering outstanding full service since 1973. Our Associates are ready to serve you. Call us today for all your real estate needs.


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Roanoke Office: 3801 Electric Rd., Roanoke, VA 24018 (540) 989-4555 (800) 879-6527 Oak Grove Office: 2350 Electric Rd., Roanoke, VA 24018 (540) 989-3000 Botetourt Office: 116 Kingston Dr., Daleville, VA 24083 (540) 966-1277 Salem Office: 132 East Main Street, Salem, VA 24153 (540) 378-4058

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biggest impact on the market, both in terms of homeownership and driving culture as to house price, mixed-use and mixed density locations and walkability.” Grewe feels that two other important groups of buyers will have a large impact on the market in 2019 as well—first-time homebuyers and baby boomers. He says, “The ability of first time homebuyers to find homes to purchase and the baby boomers deciding to cash in on the equity they are sitting on and downsize to one-level living, rather than remodeling their current homes and aging in place, will be a factor.” There is already a demand for housing priced between $100,000–200,000 for those first-time buyers, but more homes in the $200,000– 250,000 will allow baby boomers to make a move and feel comfortable doing so. He says “It will also open up inventory in R o a n o ke Va l l e y H O M E S p r i n g 2 0 1 9

other price ranges, getting more of the folks who are still living in their first home the opportunity for more choices.” Roanoke is also enjoying a boom in new construction. Like many areas around the country, the housing market collapse triggered a surplus of new homes just sitting on the market. Hale says, “When the market began to recover, new home inventory couldn’t keep up with demand. Local developers are enjoying a robust market.” Although Grewe says new construction is available across all price ranges in the Roanoke Valley, “It is currently focused in the price points above $225,000, with some proposed townhouse and patio home projects in the upper $180,000s to low $200,000s range.” Roanoke Valley by the numbers

An important and crucial way to gauge the market in any area continues to be home prices and sales of existing homes. In Roanoke, “The average starter home has risen to a price range of $130,000, midrange homes begin at $245,000, with luxury homes starting at $750,000 and going up,” according to Hale. Overall, median sales prices seem to have risen in the past few years. In 2017 the average price of a home sold in Roanoke was $180,000; in 2018 it rose to $217,465. Sales of existing homes were up two percent in 2018 which shows that people are taking that risk and entering the market.

As a part of the Smith Mountain Lake community for more than 30 years, our agents’ mastery of the local market will surely find you the property of your dreams. Call or visit us today and work with consistent leaders in sales and service, backed by a company you can trust. • 540-721-8659 ©2019 BHH Affiliates, LLC. An independently owned and operated franchisee of BHH Affiliates, vLLC. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of HomeServices of America, Inc.® Equal Housing Opportunity.

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Your house is getting ready to go on the market, or perhaps it's been on the market for several weeks. HOME shares comments from local real estate professionals as they divulge the top three things buyers are looking for in their home search, as well as the three issues buyers complain about when they tour homes on the market.

buyers want

buyers’ complaints

Cyndi Fletcher, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, REALTORS n EVERYTHING renovated! n Good schools. n Outdoor living spaces, i.e., porch, deck or patio a must!

Cyndi Fletcher, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, REALTORS n Kitchen and bath upgrades are not done. n Small bedrooms. n Small closets.

Amy Cullen, MKB Realtors n Location. n Spacious kitchen/living area for family and entertaining. n Move-in ready. Scott Avis, MKB Realtors n Updated/new kitchen. n Updated/new master bath. n Outdoor living/entertaining space. Bill Gearhart, Coldwell Banker n Convenient location. n Low maintenance. n Modern amenities. Susan Bailey, Long & Foster Realty n Location! Good schools, close to workplace, vibrant neighborhood. n Condition: Everything is done—turn key! n Price: Buyers want a good value.

Also relevant to demand, the average time on the market for homes has decreased by nearly 16 percent in 2018. All of these factors contribute to a healthy market, but perhaps the most important factor is the presence of inventory. Hale comments that as home prices increase, inventory will increase. But Roanoke has a healthy absorption of 4.34 months. “We don’t suffer lack of inventory like many areas of Virginia and around the country,” says Hale. Grewe adds, “The only price points where we see any surplus are in the luxury market—homes priced at $750,000 and above.” A healthy market also has a higher inventory of affordable single-family homes. In Roanoke in 2018, 733 homes were sold in the $200,000–245,000 range. Hopefully, 26

Amy Cullen, MKB Realtors n Inventory is low. (It's a good time to be a seller!) n Homes are disorganized, cluttered and not market-ready. n Appliances are old and outdated, possibly requiring maintenance or replacement. Scott Avis, MKB Realtors n Lack of renovation. n Not enough modern/open space. n Lack of yard and outdoor living space is problematic. Bill Gearhart, Coldwell Banker n Low inventory. n Low inventory. n Low inventory. Susan Bailey, Long & Foster Realty n Wallpaper and paint colors: Buyers want it neutral. n Furnishings look tired and exhausted, therefore, the house does too. n Bathrooms not updated, if not, buyers see dollar signs. as we move into 2019, inventory will be on the rise in all price ranges as more and more people decide to list their homes for sale. Buying or selling—is now your time?

Whether you are a first time home buyer, a seasoned seller looking for a change or a retiree looking to downsize, there is a place for you in the Roanoke real estate market. Now may be the perfect time to make a change, but before you do, enlist the help of our local experts. The Roanoke Valley has many qualified real estate professionals, builders and relocation experts ready and willing to make your next move as easy and painless as possible. ✦ R o a n o ke Va l l e y H O M E S p r i n g 2 0 1 9




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by design

ith GRAND HOME FURNISHINGS’ DESIGN CONSULTANTS available to help you select furniture for your home—you’re sure to find the perfect piece. Each Design Consultant receives an extensive education and training to help you find the perfect mix of furnishings to make the time spent at home the most enjoyable part of your day. Best of all—these services are offered at no charge to Grand customers.

Whether you have a small budget or are looking for something that will last for generations, you are sure to find it at Grand Home Furnishings. We carry some of the best brands: from La-Z-Boy and Kincaid to Sealy and Serta—and everything in between. With our long-standing, good relationships with these brands, we’re able to negotiate the best prices on the best brands and pass the savings on to you. 2 8

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GRAND HOME FURNISHINGS DESIGN CO N S U LTA N T Crystal McKenrick Crystal has been with the Grand family for over 15 years. She has helped hundreds of families create a special place in their homes for gathering relaxing and celebrating life together. Crystal is based at our Valley View store location.

HOME premier project 2019

To schedule an appointment with Crystal you can email furnitureExpert@ or call the Valley View store at 540-563-2070


Myth #1: Designers are only needed on large projects. Our Design Consultants can assist in the design and furnishing of any size project. Whether an entire home or the smallest nursery, they can help make your dream a reality—no matter the size.

Crystal McKenrick

Myth #2: A big budget is needed to hire a designer. Grand’s design services are free with your furniture purchase and our consultants know how to manage your budget for the maximum result. Myth #3: You have to use the designer’s ideas. Our Consultants work with you to ensure you are happy with the furniture choices you make. Plus—Grand offers a 30-day total satisfaction guarantee. If you are not happy with your purchase within 30 days we’ll exchange it or provide a full refund. See the store for details.

VALLEY VIEW: 1945 Valley View Blvd. TANGLEWOOD: 4235 Electric Road GRANDHOMEFURNISHINGS.COM r v h o m e m a g a z i n e . c o m 2 39

GARDEN outdoor retreats

Garden Nooks That Spark Joy tiny retreats and outdoor follies



What do the popularity of online shopping, home food delivery businesses, telecommuting and culture’s newfound focus on wellness have in common? They all represent a growing lifestyle trend of “staying in.” Technological advancements, plus a growing cultural awareness focusing on personal well-being and self-care, has led to many creating a home sanctuary to overcome the busyness of life. We have seen this trend realized with the explosion of home decorating and DIY bloggers gaining in popularity over the past decade and, inevitably, these trends also inspire us to examine our outdoor living spaces as well. Creatively thinking of what might spark joy for you in your outdoor space, partnered with skilled planning and wise investment can help you gain a peaceful retreat in your yard to relax and unwind. 3 0

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Modern homeowners and purchasers have the freedom to think creatively, whether purchasing or contemplating changes to their current homes. They no longer need to feel restricted by current layouts or space available and have been encouraged to think outside the box and transform their spaces to fit the function, feel and aesthetic they desire. These inspired transformations can extend outdoors to create tiny retreats—garden nooks and outdoor follies that reflect the homeowners’ style, interests and personalities. Extending outdoor spaces not only creates a tranquil escape that extends beyond the conventional walls of your home, but those investments increase the value of both home and property. When asked about creating outdoor tranquil retreats, Mark Maslow, owner of Southern Landscape Group, says, “When I think about tiny nooks and small retreats within a landscape, I get really excited! After all, we are talking about creating a closeness to nature and designing a space that gives you the euphoric feeling of peace and tranquility. We all could benefit from that kind of escape that is right there on your property.” Maslow suggests the following considerations when planning an outdoor retreat: n Location: Is it easy to access from your exterior doors, yet away from noise and people?

n Privacy: Can the space create a feeling of seclusion and escape? n Soft Elements: Does the landscape plan offer soft elements to make it feel alive? Examples of these would be the sound of water, or plants and features that attract birds and butterflies. A tiny outdoor retreat can blur the line between indoor and outdoor space, creating a peaceful escape that is an extension of home. When planning for an outdoor retreat, consider the scope of the yard and take note of which natural borders and barriers currently exist and which may need to be added. Living privacy boundaries block views and sounds from neighboring yards, the street, or even activity areas in your own yard. Consider the location of your intended retreat to maximize sunrise or sunset views or natural vistas of mountains, lakes, or streams. April Sigmon, Landscape Designer at Southern Landscape Group advises, “different garden areas are separated from each other by focusing sight lines which can create a sense of mystery or privacy. Screening views from one section of the garden to another (or your yard from your neighbor’s yard) doesn’t have to block 100% of the undesired view. Even deciduous shrubs can blur the edges of the space enough where your focus remains inside the garden room. Focal points also help retain interest

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Private Custom home on 3.2 acres. Fabulous mountain and pond views. Open concept with 9’ ceilings. Sun Room with separate HVAC. White Oak Hardwood Floors. Custom Kitchen with pine cabinetry with mahogany finish. Stainless Steel Bosch Appliances. Granite. Formal Living Room and Dining Room. Entry Level Master Suite with Walk-in Closet. Electric Fireplace. Master Bath with leathered Granite. Billiards and Bar Rooms. Second Floor Master. Lower Level Office/Sitting Room. Wine Cellar/Tasting Room. Exercise Room. Incredible outdoor Kitchen. Professionally Landscaped. 8460 Poplar Springs Lane, $1,099,000 ®


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inside the room—these can be a fire pit, a favorite planter, or an interesting tree along a path.” Other features to consider when planning a tiny retreat are seating options. Very small spaces may only allow for a comfortable chair and small table, but larger spaces could include a hammock, swinging bed, multiple seats, or a larger table with chairs. Use the footprint available to help determine the function of the space and make a plan from there. A beautiful and functional addition to a backyard retreat might be a “folly.” In eighteenth-century Europe, follies were first built as decorative, non-functional, symbolic structures in gardens, representing classical virtues of the location—temples, pyramids, or abbeys—and were purposed to add whimsy or extravagance to the surrounding landscape. In today’s landscaping, a folly is built generally matching the style of the exterior of the main house and increasingly used as functional outdoor space. Outdoor follies can either be created from repurposing existing outdoor structures or building new ones. There are numerous plans online for follies that match the architectural style of your home, as well as existing shed kits that may be purchased from home improvement stores and modified to your own needs. Be sure to check with neighborhood covenants before building to ensure that your planned structure falls within guidelines. R o a n o ke Va l l e y H O M E S p r i n g 2 0 1 9

A trend that has become popular in today’s booming DIY culture is the “she shed”—a folly created by transforming backyard structures into beautiful and luxurious hideaways where women can escape the daily grind. Created for crafting, reading, relaxing, or indulging in a favorite hobby, the she shed offers its owner a welcome retreat from the unending list of chores staring back at her inside the home. No commute is required and the space can be customized to indulge the senses with favorite scents, luxurious linens and comfortable furniture for relaxing. Many she sheds offer modern conveniences such as electricity, internet connectivity and air-conditioning; some are even large enough that they may be used as small gathering spaces, should entertaining be something that brings joy. Imagine your own current outdoor space. Is there a particular area to which you are drawn, where you might create a tranquil space for daily escape—a cozy nook, haven or folly? Begin planning now and you could transform the tiny retreat of your dreams by summer! ✦

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adventures in upcycling repurposing heirloom pieces BY DEBOR AH SIROCKMAN


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efore dismissing out of hand an offer of Grandma’s decades-old dresser, it might be wise to think twice. There is something special about antique and vintage furniture that, with a bit of updating, can be transformed into trendy, eclectic pieces that set off more modern decor in spaces that feel fresh, inviting and eclectic. A little elbow grease and a coat or three of paint can result in a family heirloom for the next generation. It’s worth putting time and money into an old piece of furniture if it has good bones.

Grandmas all over agree that they don’t make furniture like they used to and they are right. Modern furniture is often put together with particleboard, veneer, staples and glue, whereas a good, old solid piece is crafted with tongue-in-groove joinings, dovetail drawers, quality wood and solid metal hardware. Well-made, solid wood pieces are available new, but modern craftsmanship is expensive. Why not update Grandma’s dresser with a fresh refinish or a new coat of paint! Painting tired furniture has the same cosmetic effect as making up a tired face: a furniture makeover can bring out old beauty and completely change its look. Painting is only one of the many rewarding and fun options for restoring and repurposing legacy pieces. Furniture can also be retrofitted to serve entirely different purposes. One of my first repurpose projects was a piece we found for a kitchen island in our summer home. My husband and I hunted for something unique and stumbled upon a vintage elevator governor from New York City. (The governor is the piece of machinery that prevents the elevator from plummeting.) It had such a great industrial look; we added a set of legs from an old workbench and topped it with reclaimed barn wood. It is truly a one-of-kind piece; chances of seeing another one quite like it are slim which makes the piece so beautiful and special to us. Even though we’ve done many projects since, that piece remains one of our favorites. Finishing that project jumpstarted our repurposing adventures. The next project was quite an undertaking. Missing

a piece for our dining area, we already had a farm table and chairs, but needed a console and wanted another unique piece, not a traditional side table or hutch. Thus began another hunt; we combed local flea markets, auctions and Craigslist to find just the right project. Finally, one market day there it was—a 64-drawer, vintage card catalog! It was covered in stickers and painted a funky color, but I knew it had the good bones we were seeking. The project totally took over the house, with numbered drawers and hardware everywhere. The first order of business was a good cleaning and off came the stickers. It was a start, but cleaning didn’t fix the funky paint. I wanted a dark, mahogany look and decided a two-in-one stain would do the trick. Thankfully, sanding wasn’t needed, which was key because with 64 drawers and endless nooks and crannies, it would have taken a very long time. It took two coats and polished up nicely. It was all coming together, but not quite right; at this point, it was just an improved card catalog, not a console. Inspiration arrived in the form of a reciprocating saw; we cut the body in half and secured it side by side, which left the piece not quite high enough and topless. We stacked two store bought wooden feet on top of each other and voila! We made three more sets and the height was perfect. We found a beautiful piece of wood for the top and finally arrived at our vintage card catalog console. It took a dedicated hunt and a few repurpose tricks, but she is a beauty! PHOTOS: MICHAEL PATCH

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Fabulous Finds

Repurposed, Vintage, Decor & More

361 Scruggs Road | Moneta, VA 24121 Mon — Sat 10 to 6 | Closed on Sunday

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If you’re inspired to take on an upcycle, just do it! The beauty of upcycling is that it doesn’t have to be perfect. Start with a simple, straightforward project. Find inspiration in magazines and on Instagram and Pinterest; take those ideas with you when you embark on the hunt—the best part! There are so many places to look: Facebook Marketplace, estate sales, rummage sales, thrift stores and the king of all upcycling resources, the flea market. If you’re fortunate enough to be able to get to a good flea, the world of junk will be your oyster. Look for pieces with good bones; make sure your targets are structurally sound if you don’t have a fix-it person at the ready. Shake the table, sit in the chair, pull out the drawers as if you were buying it new. Sometimes pieces need just a little TLC and sometimes they are just too far gone. But don’t discount those “too hard” pieces either! Maybe the top could be turned into a sign; the leg can be used to make a towel rack; the apron can become a frame for another amazing piece. Along with the satisfaction of upcycling obsolete, discarded pieces comes real pride in seeing your vision come to life. It’s fun to create pieces that are unique and to enjoy those new creations in your living spaces. Each has a special story and comes with hard work, but both the process and the result are sure to delight and inspire. ✦ 36

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Inaugural Roanoke St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway You won’t have to travel far to tour—and enter to win—the St. Jude Dream Home, located in the Orchards of Ashley Plantation. This newly constructed, 2,688-square foot home features four bedrooms, three and a half baths, a three-car garage and a chef's gourmet kitchen. A large, covered front porch allows for spectacular mountain views. M.W. Dunbar Construction has mastered every detail in the construction of this quintessential home, valued at $425,000. ONE LUCKY NEW HOMEOWNER WILL BE CHOSEN BY RAFFLE ON JUNE 26 TO WIN THIS EXCEPTIONAL HOME. The St. Jude Dream

Home Giveaway is new to the Roanoke Valley area and benefits the lifesaving work of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, one of the world’s premier pediatric cancer research centers leading the ways in which the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. It is the only National Cancer Institutedesignated Comprehensive Cancer Center devoted solely to children. Treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20 percent to 80 percent since the hospital opened more than 50 years ago. St. Jude is working to drive the overall survival rate for childhood cancer to 90 percent, and we won’t stop until no child dies from cancer. St. Jude freely shares the discoveries it makes, and every child saved at St. Jude means doctors and scientists worldwide can use that knowledge to save many thousands more children. Families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food—because all a family should worry about is helping their child live. When asked how he got involved with this project, Mark Dunbar of M.W. Dunbar Construction recalled, “I was approached by Kelly McGuire, a construction specialist with St. Jude. They had been looking for a lot to purchase nearby. Mr. McGuire explained what was needed, and together we were able to secure a lot from a private individual in Ashley Plantation;” the lot fit into the project’s budget, and St. Jude and Dunbar Construction have partnered to procure donations for the materials and labor needed to build the Dream Home. “The time, talent and expertise contributed by the many subcontractors and craftsmen on this project has been humbling,” Dunbar added. “I am amazed by the generosity of everyone—from the excavation crew to the framers, plumbing contractors, just everybody. We all know it is a worthwhile undertaking.” Dunbar also offered that as this is the first St. Jude Dream Home in this area, the commitment and excitement for the project has been gratifying (other Dream Home Giveaways have been located in Virginia Beach and Richmond). ✦

The $100 tickets go on sale during a live sell-a-thon on WSET ABC 13 on April 4th. You can also purchase reserve tickets online at or by calling 800-834-5926. There are only 6,500 tickets available for sale for this Dream Home Giveaway. The Richmond and Hampton Roads 2018 Giveaway tickets sold out early. OPEN HOUSES Six weekends, May 18–June 23, 2019. Saturdays, 9am–5pm. Sundays, 12pm–5pm. GIVEAWAY DATE June 26, 2019. Winners announced on WSET ABC 13. Only 6,500 tickets available. LOCAL AND NATIONAL SPONSORS INCLUDE WSET ABC 13 Trane M. W. Dunbar Construction BRIZO Shaw Floors Trane Bosch Bank of the James WYYD 107.9


LIVE bourbon


Turning to thoughts of bourbon, I imagine for many it might conjure up visions of a crackling fire on a cold winter’s night with a hunting dog curled up at its master’s feet. But for true bourbon lovers in Virginia and elsewhere, this exalted spirit brings more than cold weather comfort. I, for one, enjoy the deep earthy flavor of the brown juice year ‘round. I tend to be a purist—I take mine over ice with just a little water—but there are a multitude of fresh and fabulous bourbon cocktails that can outrun holiday nogs and cranberry punches to enliven festive parties welcoming spring, to outshine stodgy sea breezes and fizzes. 38

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First, a bit about bourbon history and culture: If you have read or heard anything of the history of this uniquely American spirit, you will know that the roots of its origin are hotly contested. The two states that claim the title of “birthplace of bourbon” are Kentucky and our dear Old Dominion. As best I can tell from my own investigation, bourbon’s birthright can be boasted by both. Way back in 1789, a western Virginia preacher, Elijah Craig, started aging his whiskey in oak barrels (now a requirement to be legally called bourbon). In 1792, Pastor Craig’s far-western area of Virginia became what is now Kentucky. Part of that area was Bourbon County, named for the French Royal House of Bourbon and credited as the origin of the unique process of aging corn liquor in oak barrels; Bourbon County gave the potent potable its name. Bourbon fever ran rampant through the south and by the early 1800s there were thousands of outfits cooking up the sauce throughout Virginia. Even beloved native son George Washington got into the game in 1797, turning a Mount Vernon side hustle into one of the largest bourbon distilleries in the country. Then came another war: as destructive as it was to southern culture overall, the Civil War was particularly cruel to the whiskey making business, as many of the distilleries and the corn used by distillers were destroyed in the fighting. Not too many years later, Prohibition delivered a near-knockout punch; just as bourbon production was recovering its legs, the ban on production and sale of alcohol in 1920 drove the whiskey-making trade underground, delivering to Virginia the legendary and colorful moonshiners whose stories are vivid in Allegheny and Blue Ridge Mountain lore to this day. Throughout its checkered history, bourbon was viewed as a rather lowly liquor as compared to its more sophisticated

(even snobby) cousin, scotch whiskey. Bourbon has long been the drink of regular folk, not particularly complicated or fussed over and deeply ingrained in southern culture. In the last decade or so, though, bourbon has begun to rival if not surpass scotch, in popularity and complexity. Bourbon festivals, tastings and tours are easy finds across the country and make for leisurely day trips right here in Virginia, where there are no fewer than a dozen distillers of my favorite hooch. A bourbon crawl starts up the road from central Virginia to Afton’s Silverback Distillery; to the east is Richmond’s Reservoir Distillery. Manassas has KO Distilling and a quick jaunt to Fredericksburg winds up at the A. Smith Bowman Distillery, where their Single Barrel Virginia Straight Bourbon beat out Kentucky distillers in 2018 and was named the “World’s Best Bourbon” at San Francisco’s World Spirits Competition, associated with the Triple Crown of Competitions. At any rate, a bourbon tour is a great way to spend a weekend; it goes without saying that wise bourbon day trippers designate dry drivers. As April brings warm weather and the fireplace is cleaned for the season, you may be thinking it’s time to move the brown liquor to the back of the cabinet and bring forward the lighter spirits of spring. Just hold on! There are tasty ways to enjoy the smoky brown brew all through spring and summer. Derby Day is coming, accompanied by the most iconic warm weather bourbon concoction in the south—the mint julep. Imagine porch-sitting in a big wooden rocker on a wide veranda in May, the smell of magnolia in the air and a sweet, icy, minty cocktail in a cold Julep cup in hand. The recipe for this nostalgic classic is simple: crushed ice, home-made simple syrup (infused with fresh mint or not) and mint for stirring and muddling around. Serving it up in a pewter or silver cup makes it seem even colder on hot spring days, as crushed ice forms frost on metal.

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The Irish say whiskey; the Scottish say whisky. Canada, India and Japan (the three other major whisky producers) follow the Scottish spelling. US producers generally follow the Irish spelling, with some exceptions: George Dickel, Makers Mark and Old Forester follow the Scottish. — FORBES, Is It Whisky or Whiskey and Why It Matters

—Lively Table 10–15 blackberries, muddled 8–10 mint leaves, muddled 2 tsp sugar 1 oz freshly squeezed lemon juice 3 oz bourbon 3 oz club soda Divide blackberries, mint and sugar between 2 whiskey glasses and muddle. Fill glasses with ice and divide lemon juice, bourbon and soda between glasses. Stir and garnish with extra blackberries (optional)


—The Spruce Eats 1 1/2 ounces bourbon 2 ounces lemonade 1 ounce pomegranate juice Shake with ice and strain, serve over ice and garnish with lemon wedge or cherry.


4 cups boiling water 5 regular-size tea bags 3/4 cup sugar 1 teaspoon lemon zest 4 cups cold water 1 cup bourbon 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice Garnish: lemon slices Pour boiling water over tea bags, sugar and lemon zest. Stir until sugar is dissolved; cover and steep 5 minutes. Pour mixture through a fine wire-mesh strainer into a large pitcher, discarding tea bags and zest. Stir in 4 cups cold water, bourbon and lemon juice. Cover and chill 30 minutes to 12 hours. Serve over ice. Garnish with lemon slices. To make this tea a day ahead, follow recipe as directed, omitting ice and garnish. Store in the refrigerator in a pitcher. When ready to serve, stir in ice cubes and lemon slices. ✦

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DESIGN outdoor seating

sitTing pretty


With the weather warming up, it’s time to get excited about spending more time outside, whether you’re by the pool, tending the grill, or reading on a balcony. Whatever your outside space looks like, the one thing you’ll need to consider is outdoor seating. If your area is an open, terraced patio with a fireplace, you may need to consider sturdy, wooden chairs or a pair of loveseats will make the outdoor space feel cozy. If you’re designing a covered front porch, you may only need a few rocking chairs and a set of French doors to coax you to spend time relaxing outdoors. Homeowners have begun treating their outside spaces with much more regard than in the past. The patio or porch is now, quite honestly, another room in your home. r vhomemaga zine .com 41


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As with every other room, the options for personalizing your outdoor space are limitless. The classic, wrought iron and wicker options are still available, but there are more contemporary routes if your taste demands it. There are also treated composite wood and untreated wood options, such as teak, white oak and cypress. The outdoor space can reflect the flow of your home’s indoor colors and style through the furniture style and arrangement, finishes and fabrics. For example, a traditional colonial-style home with a brick-paved patio may benefit from a classic black wrought iron furniture arrangement with an equally-classic green and white cushion set, while an expansive deck on a ranch-style home with a view may look best with a weathered teak sectional and bolder accent colors in the fabric. If you are going to use your space for al fresco dining, you would obviously be investing in comfortable and durable dining chairs and a table, but you may also want to include a small sitting area with a matching loveseat or chaise for after dinner conversation. If you’re decorating a patio with a fire pit, arrange a sofa and two or three armchairs at a safe distance around the fire pit, perhaps including a few floor cushions for extra guests. In any arrangement, choosing the focal point is critical. A fire pit is an excellent centerpiece but also think about a sumptuous ottoman or one-of-a-kind cocktail table. Be sure your outdoor space speaks to you: comfort, relaxation and fun are vital. The timeless wrought iron and wicker materials are still available in the style we all grew up with, though the elements themselves have had a bit of an update. Wicker furniture, for example, is now most frequently found in treated wood or in all-together synthetic options. These updated selections provide a longerlasting investment in outdoor furniture because they stand up to the elements and are easier to clean. In the same vein, wrought iron furniture, already a hardy outdoor material, is now treated with rust and fade-resistant coating. Both options are nearly impervious to the elements. Local merchants, as well as online retailers, offer a vast variety of classic shapes and finishes—some look straight out of a classic film and some have a more modern flair, such as more organic shaping in the arms of the chairs or using a material such as stone or an R o a n o ke Va l l e y H O M E S p r i n g 2 0 1 9

acetate. However, mainstays wicker and wrought iron aren’t limited to the classic styles of the past. Sleek and modern options in both materials are now mainstream. A simple online search of “modern wicker outdoor furniture” returned hundreds of current options. Most of the contemporary designs have a minimalist flair—very little decoration in both the finish and fabric. Additionally, they are often sectional, allowing for extensive customization and flexibility in your space. However, modern furniture options extend far beyond wood, wicker and wrought iron. Thanks to the development of sturdy synthetic outdoor materials, the possibilities for your backyard can range from post-modern to space-age. Many manufacturers use materials like polyethylene plastic to create molded loveseats, tables and chairs in a variety of novel shapes and colors, ranging from white and gray to blue and yellow. Some are even equipped with color-changing, glowing LED lights, so you can change the color of your pieces with the touch of a button. This new, plastic furniture does not fade or melt in the sun and is easily hosed off, making cleaning a cinch. The primary consideration you need to take when designing your outdoor space is the level of exposure your furniture and fabrics will need to withstand. With covered areas such as porches, the finishes don’t need to endure the same level of exposure as an open patio. The more open your space is to the elements, the more resilient you need your selections to be, with choice in wood and fabrics in particular. For example, when choosing wooden furniture for an open deck or patio, choosing a durable outdoor-friendly wood and leaving it unfinished may deliver much less heartbreak than selecting a


In addition to treating a wide variety of skin conditions, Carilion Clinic Dermatology and Mohs Surgery offers a variety of aesthetic services, including: • Chemical peels • Medical-grade products • Dermaplane treatments • Microdermabrasion • Facials • Permanent makeup • Fraxel laser skin resurfacing • Photofacials • Laser hair reduction Monthly specials are available online. To schedule a consultation with Master Aesthetician Susan Gaylor, call 540-345-6010.


Join us at the Roanoke Council-Garden Clubs, Tuesday, May 14 at 6 p.m. to learn about skin changes to monitor and our advanced-technology treatment options. A panel of experts will answer your questions. To register, visit


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Premium Outdoor Furnishings for years of enjoyment

varnished option since varnish frequently becomes discolored and cracked when left in the sun and humidity. The same goes for certain types of paint. When painting or refinishing wooden outdoor furniture, be sure to thoroughly sand and prime with an outdoor primer before selecting durable exterior paint. These critical steps will help your furniture look fresh for summers to come. Determining the best finish for outdoor metal furniture is also important. Two main options for metal furniture are paint and powder coat finish. Paint finishes usually have a more extensive color selection and overall better resistance to fading from the sun, but it does require a specialized primer to maintain any strength in the finish. With powder coat finishes, a primer is unnecessary. Powder coat finishes are more durable when applied in thicker layers, but they are prone to chips if applied to a flexible surface and the homeowner can’t usually touch-up the area without needing to strip the entire powder coat. The same consideration goes for fabrics. Visiting a fabric supplier or retailer allows one to feel the difference between

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indoor and outdoor fabrics. Fabrics are often measured in what is called a “double rub,” which tells the consumer the fabric’s abrasion resistance. Asking a retailer or researching on your own can tell you the double rub measurement of the fabric you’re interested in. A medium durability fabric would be 9,00015,000 double rubs; a heavy-duty fabric, 15,000+ double rubs. Most modern outdoor fabrics go through a chemical treatment that makes them more durable and resistant to the elements. Selecting a fabric that is made from synthetic materials and is designated as being “outdoor” or “UV-resistant” will definitely be your best option. The fabric with the best reviews is solutiondyed 100% acrylic (such as Sunbrella), which will resist fading from the sun and repel water (thus resisting mildew). Solutiondyed 100% acrylic fabrics are unique in that the acrylic threads R o a n o ke Va l l e y H O M E S p r i n g 2 0 1 9

are dyed before the fabric is woven together, which makes these fabrics exceptionally durable and attractive! There are inexpensive do-it-yourself fabric sprays that will protect against water and UV rays, but the reviews are often mixed, nor are they compatible with all fabrics. Additionally, you will want to verify that your outdoor cushions are filled with a polyester fiberfill stuffing, compressed polyester, or polyurethane foam inserted into a water-resistant cover. This will ensure that your fabric will be just as protected on the inside as it is on the outside. You may also want to invest in waterproof furniture covers to protect your furniture when your space is not in use, such as during the winter months. Many covers are UV-resistant and include mesh vents to prevent mold and mildew from taking hold and may also include a warranty. Whichever fabrics, finishes and furniture styles you choose, the only requirement is that your selections fit your unique space and tastes. Stick to a theme, or mix and match as you see fit. Just make sure you love living in your outdoor room! âœŚ

BE A PART OF THE ROANOKE COUNTRY CLUB Golf & Sports Memberships Summer Pool Membership Junior Golf & Tennis Memberships with Lower Monthly Dues (22 or younger)

Golf and Sports Memberships include an individual Carilion Wellness membership (excludes Junior Memberships) Summer Sports Camp for Junior Members Renovated Indoor Tennis Facility

All Bunkers Rencently Renovated

To inquire about membership opportunities at Roanoke Country Club, please contact Whitney Shupe at (540) 345-1508 or r vhomemaga zine .com 4 5


real estate issue

financial fitness


Tis the season for home buying! The National Association of Realtors reported that there were 1.55 million active listings on the market coming into 2019 and that 32% of buyers were first-time buyers. If you’re in the market (or even if you’re just interested in refinancing), you’ll want to get in the best financial shape possible before embarking on the loan qualification process. There are different loan products available that can help you meet both your budget and your goals and the better shape you’re in, the better the loan application process will be. If you want to get to the closing table smoothly and without hassle, follow these tips to getting your finances fit for a home loan. 4 6

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Check your credit reports

Your credit report is a crucial factor in the mortgage application process and a loan officer will pull your credit reports faster than you can say fifteen-year fixed rate. This document reflects your creditworthiness. Think of your credit report as your financial autobiography, one that showcases the highs… and lows. Have you paid your bills on time? How many loans have you taken out? How much do you still owe? Do you have an established credit history, or is it still relatively new? The credit report details your bill paying record and supplies a view into your credit (such as your use of loans or charge cards). Review the report carefully for any discrepancies, such as a past due payment you know you paid on time or a line of credit that you know you closed years ago. Contact the reporting credit agency or bureau to correct these errors. If there are any delinquencies, you’ll want to take care of them as it will be more challenging to get the loan you wish to with delinquent accounts appearing on your credit report. The fewer the blunders on your credit report, the better your credit score. Know the score

Unlike the numbers on the scale, higher digits are admirable when it comes to your credit score. Lenders will examine your score and use that information to determine the likelihood that you’ll pay your monthly mortgage payments—and make payments on time. The higher your credit score, the better the interest rate you’ll qualify for; likewise, the lower the credit score, the higher the interest rate. It’s kind of like the SAT—the closer to 800, the better the score. A FICO credit score upwards of 700 is considered a good credit score with scores below 670 falling into the average range and numbers in the low 600s and below falling into the fair to very poor range. Knowing your credit score will help you discern if lenders will view you as a credit-worthy applicant or if you need work on improving your score. Some lenders and loan products allow people with fair to poor credit to still qualify for loans; however, those loans often come with exorbitant interest rates. Decrease your debt (and don’t open any new lines of credit)

From credit card balances and car payments to student loans, most


Neighbor hbor to Neig





VP/Mortgage Loan Officer


VP/Mortgage Loan Officer NMLS# 659528 NMLS# 659514 Local Since


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Why re-fi?

Cyndi and Jeff Fletcher

Berkshire Hathaway Premier, REALTORS Text or call: 540-589-3084

There is no substitute for experience.



ST AT E G A M E S O FA M E R I C A . C O M As host state, anyone in Virginia can participate

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Have you thought about refinancing your mortgage loan? Maybe you’re not sure if it would actually help move you ahead. Perhaps you are curious as to why anybody refinances their mortgage in the first place. People refinance for different reasons: they might want to consolidate debt, make home improvements (like finishing a basement or adding a garage), or garner the benefits of paying a lower-interest loan. Still more might want to switch from a 30year loan to a 15-year loan—the latter lets you pay less interest over time and allows you to pay your mortgage off faster. Typically, you want to save 1% when you refinance. Take a look at what you’re currently paying in interest, how much life is left on your loan, how much it will cost to close and if it will save you more in the long run to re-fi.

Americans have some kind of debt in addition to their mortgages. The amount of debt you owe in contrast to your income is known as your debt-to-income ratio (DTI) and this ratio is yet another principal factor in the loan qualification process. Lenders develop this figure based on how much of your monthly income you spend on monthly debts. The DTI also informs lenders about how much money you can borrow. A high credit score and a low DTI will help you towards qualifying for the best rates. Some ways you can reduce your DTI include making purchases in cash instead of on credit (to avoid shouldering more debt) and making more (or more substantial) payments on a highinterest debt before making a mortgage application. Build your savings

Before you settle in with a cup of coffee and a date with Zillow, turn your attention to your savings account. It’s not exactly cheap to buy a house: in addition to the down payment (more on that in a moment), you should expect to pay for house inspections, closing costs, repairs or upgrades to your new home-to-be and general expenses associated with moving. Having more cash on hand can mean less stress and less debt in the days ahead. Plus, mortgage lenders like to see that you’ve been squirreling away funds in your savings account: it demonstrates that you’d still be able to pay your mortgage each month even in times of crisis. Increasing your savings can also lead to being able to put down a sizeable down payment, which can help you establish equity faster and lower your monthly payment. Strive to bring 20% of the home cost to the table to get out of PMI (private mortgage insurance)—PMI means a higher monthly payment and even more money going towards interest and not the principal of the loan. Talk with a lender

You’d hate to attend an open house or schedule a showing of a home you saw in your dream neighborhood only to learn later that the property is out of your price range or that you don’t qualify for the kind of loan you’d need to buy it. With that in mind, before you find a realtor, find a lender. Working with a lender from the get-go helps put you on the path to pre-qualification. The lender will run your credit and analyze your financial documents to see what you can afford in R o a n o ke Va l l e y H O M E S p r i n g 2 0 1 9

local lending experts offer their insights Interest rates and forecasts

“Rates are still really, really great.” —Valinda Hayes, Member One Federal Credit Union “Predictions right now are pretty good: no major increases for this year.”—Angie Apgar, American National Bank & Trust Company “We’ve seen improvements to rates this winter and if that bodes well for this year, we would hopefully see stabilized rates—my crystal ball does have cracks in it, though!”—Cyndi Stulz, Virginia Mountain Mortgage

terms of a monthly payment. At that point, you’ll receive a pre-approval letter that outlines the amount a lender is willing to loan. Buyers who have been pre-approved are seen as serious buyers and they usually don’t have deals fall through because of lending problems. You don’t want anything weighing you down and slowing down your home-buying or re-financing process, so take your wallet’s pulse, work out a way to pay down and manage your debt and find your way to financial fitness this season. ✦

Good news

People tend to worry when they hear that the Fed is raising rates, but they need to hold tight. Cyndi Stulz says that “the prime market is what reacts and influences mortgage rates—not the Fed.” According to Angie Apgar, while people are more credit conscious than they used to be, it doesn’t mean that everyone’s

walking around with a perfect credit score. Lenders can help with credit counseling. “It doesn’t cost anything to let me pull your credit, help answer questions and write to the agencies.” Valinda Hayes says that she sees many first-time home buyers maintaining an idea that they need “all this money to buy a house—that’s not true. There are limited down payment options, loans for 100% financing—you can ask the sellers to pay your closing costs. Essentially, you can come to the table with no money down.”


All three experts agree: get your paperwork organized! Whether you’re a first-time home buyer or if you haven’t been out in the market for a while, lenders need more information than they used to, so be sure to have bank statements, paystubs, tax returns and other related papers in order.

There’s no place like home. That’s why we work so hard to build the right loan for you. You’ve found the home that’s right and we think your mortgage should be too. Every step of the way, we’re here to help – with a wide variety of loan types to fit your unique circumstances, interest rate locks, flexible rates and terms, simple loan closings and the best local service. We’d love to lend you a hand. 1- 866 -773 - 2811

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Coming Home



Roanoke native, Whitney Norbo always knew she wanted to return to her hometown after her college and graduate school years. Her parents, sisters and many other family and friends were still in town; it felt like home. So Whitney found a position as a pediatric nurse practitioner working at Carilion-Roanoke Memorial Hospital and moved back to the same neighborhood where she grew up—the same house even. Like many young professionals just starting out, Whitney initially moved back in with her parents as she started her new job and looked for a place of her own. A call from a friend saying that the charming yellow brick house in South Roanoke, mere blocks from the hospital, might be available spurred Whitney to consider homeownership. She tracked down the out-of-state owners, who were, in fact, looking to sell and offered to purchase. And the rest, as they say, is history. 5 0

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Years of training in antique meccas Charlottesville, VA and Chapel Hill, NC and a lifelong penchant for estate sales, meant that Whitney, an inveterate art collector and self-described tag-sale enthusiast, had to put a lot of her collections in storage in her parents’ basement over the years. So it is perhaps with extra impetus, that Whitney and her mother Phyllis began to think about furnishing the house and making it Whitney’s own. Thankfully, the home had been wellmaintained, “I was lucky. People had done work on the house all along the way, updating the lighting and renovating the kitchen,” explains Whitney, “So there wasn’t a whole lot I had to do. I had some things painted. I’ve changed out some doors, but that’s kind of it.” Initially, the walls were all painted the same color—an unobtrusive off-white, but although Whitney has changed the colors in some rooms downstairs, she’s chosen very soft neutrals the better to offset her colorful and extensive collection of local and regional artwork. Over the mantle in the living room and grouped together on an adjacent wall, are several works of Charlottesville artist Ted Turner, a particular favorite of Whitney’s. “People around here have his paintings in their homes,” she laughs, “so I grew up seeing them. Then when I went to school at UVA, I was on the lookout, but it was actually coming home to Roanoke where I got these. I bought one from Ken Farmer Auctions and when my mom and I went to pick it up, he said, ‘I have a warehouse of these things if

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you’d like to look…’ and we were like, ‘Uh… sure…’ I ended up with twelve of Ted Turner’s paintings that day!” It’s lucky finds like these that have fueled a life-long hobby of collecting for this young professional. In addition to hanging artwork, Whitney has always had a love of traditional decorative Chinese figurines, platters and vases. She owns dozens and has collected them since childhood. In fact everywhere the eye rests downstairs in this gem of a house the porcelain figurines add a touch of whimsy and youth to an otherwise traditional-style home. There are several lounging on the coffee table, a pair holding up vases on the mantle and another grouping next to family photos on a side table or guarding the decanters and cocktail napkins on a nearby drink tray. The living room is artfully arranged, with comfortable, overstuffed chairs and a couch centered on the painted masonry fireplace and anchored by an area rug in a subtle geometric print. The television is tucked unobtrusively off to the side atop an antique chest and is still at a comfortable viewing distance from the seating. Whitney has chosen to go with the clean lines of white plantation shutters rather than traditional draperies or other window treatments, which contributes to the feeling of brightness throughout the house and doesn’t distract the eye from the artwork or antiques. Scattered around the cozy living room and indeed all over the house, are beautiful hand-stitched

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Above the pair of resplendent cherry red club chairs, a collection of seven Ted Turner paintings embodies the colors and details throughout the room.

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A needlepoint pillow, hand crafted by Whitney, depicts the seaside, a favorite vacation spot for Whitney and her extended family each summer.

needlepoint pillows, which Whitney has made over the years. “I love to needlepoint,” she shares, “My sisters and I learned one summer at the beach with my mother and aunt. I’ve just kind of stuck with it, though I don’t have as much time to do it as I used to.” Each of these hand-stitched pieces of art is a testament to dozens of hours of careful needlework and provides decorative accents, but also palpable memories for this young homeowner. The dining room opens off the living room and here Whitney has refrained from colored walls or carpeted floors, preferring the simplicity of the antique dining room table from her mother’s family with chairs that she finished herself. “I love this table,” says Whitney, hand resting gently on its finish, “My uncle brought it back from Florida and I said, ‘Who’s getting that table? Me?’ I got my wish.” The metalwork chandelier was also a gift from her family, Whitney’s mother Phyllis to be exact. “My mother actually bought the chandelier for herself at an antique store by the beach, but she didn’t have a good spot for it, so she 5 4

An Asian-themed tulip vase, often referred to as a tulipiere, adds whimsy to the richly honed dining room table. The table is a family piece and gift from Whitney’s Uncle.

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gave it to me.” The dining room is the perfect spot to display more of Whitney’s collection of Asian china and porcelain, where it joins another Ted Turner oil painting, in the antique china cabinet and on the nearby sideboard. The compact kitchen and eat-in dining area at the rear of the house is a tribute to efficiency. Whitney explains that she didn’t have to do much more than paint the walls and switch out a few light fixtures to make the room her own. There’s a clever builtin desk/computer workstation with lovely built-in bookshelves, which give Whitney extra storage as well as a home-office of sorts. There’s another heirloom dining table in here with matching chairs that Whitney has had covered with crisp navy blue monogrammed seat cushions.

Crisp white plantation shutters allow abundant light to filter through the built-in desk/workstation adjacent to the kitchen.

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The precious Pig Painting, a Pawley's Island find, is the perfect artwork for the Lilly Pulitzer bedding Whitney reused from her college and grad school days.

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Colorful original artwork hangs along the hall, the stairway and even inside the downstairs powder room. Besides the several Ted Turners, Whitney’s collection features celebrated local artists such as Mary Bullington, Jamie Nervo, Mary Jane Burch and Nene Rowe. There is art everywhere. It is the sheer extensiveness of the collection that makes Whitney Norbo’s feel like the collection of a much older person, hardly that of a young professional just launching her own career. Whitney explains that all her collections, the art and figurines, the antiques even the needlepoint can be traced through her childhood. While other children were collecting stickers, or Barbies, or posters of teenaged heartthrobs, Whitney was already collecting art and antiques. “I’ve always just sort of bought random things that caught my eye,” she says, “and I have always gravitated to Roanoke art, even when I find them in out-of-town antique places. If there’s a picture of Roanoke, I buy it.”

The house actually has four distinct floors, a ground floor, a second floor, where Whitney has three spacious bedrooms and 2 full baths and a finished attic and unfinished basement. The bedrooms are painted cheerful colors: bright, apple green, pink, (Because they matched all the recycled Lilly Pulitzer bedding she had from college and grad school) and her own bedroom, done in bright patterns of blue and orange (an homage to her alma mater, UVA). Whitney is talented at creating art as well as collecting it. For instance, in her bedroom, Whitney displays a grouping of six Chinese vase-themed paintings that she painted herself. She explains, “I have one painting like these in my kitchen that I ordered online for $100 and when it came, I thought, I can do that!” So, she did. The finished attic is brightly lit from large windows at either end. It’s set up as a casual second sitting room, but could easily double as an additional bedroom, or, as Whitney explains, even a crafting nook.

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Whitney has put some time and effort into the outdoor areas of her home as well. “All of this was really overgrown when I got here,” says Whitney, gesturing to the charming brick patio, lawn and enchanting mixture of shrubs, trees, rose bushes and ferns in pots. “I started slowly, just pulling weeds and cutting things back…a LOT. Then got some fresh plants in. I’m hoping they’ll grow.” The back yard is sheltered and indeed it seems as if Whitney’s plantings will thrive—she has graciously opened her home and yard for this year’s Historic Garden Week. The yard itself is fully fenced and includes a small garage at the rear of the property—just a stone’s throw from the small, walkable business and restaurant district at Crystal Spring and McLanahan, one would never know it. The yard is quiet and smells like roses from the several bushes Whitney has planted. A custom metal gate divides the front part of the driveway from the back and completes the enclosure of the back yard so that it feels like an oasis of calm under the shade of the large old trees. The large brick patio is laid out in conversational groupings: a bamboo table for four in one corner, wicker chairs in another, a relaxing chaise lounge in

A pair of crepe myrtles offers a shady respite on the rear patio. The vibrant blue and white chaise and wrought iron set add the right pop of color to the outdoor space. 5 8

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another. Whitney has had crisp navy blue and white cushions custom-made for each of these arrangements, as well as those on the front porch. Her guests and visitors to the yard are sure to appreciate both the comfort and the bright pop of color these provide amidst the green lushness of the carefully maintained yard. Friends and family know otherwise, but anyone else would probably be surprised to learn that this lovely home with its tasteful decorations, extensive art collections and the beautiful yard is a young professional “hometown girl’s” first home. It’s certainly a far cry from the stacked plastic milk crates and mismatched cast-off furniture that most people start out with, but Whitney Norbo has been collecting art and antiques for most of her life. It’s a collection that she is duly proud of and one that perfectly reflects her tastes and interests. From the welcoming front porch to the cheerful back garden, Whitney has made her first home entirely her own. “I feel so lucky to have found this place,” Whitney says with a smile, “I love it here.” ✦

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real estate issue

STAGING TO SELL let us count the ways B Y C H U C K TAY LO R

“All the world’s a stage,” William Shakespeare wrote in his comedy “As You Like It.” The Bard was onto something. Relocating his family from Stratford, England, in 1599 across the river to Southwark and again in 1604 to an area north of St. Paul's Cathedral in London, we can assume he understood how to present each residence in its best light for potential buyers, yes?


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ast forward about 415 years and the art of staging a property is now part and parcel in preparing for a sale. “Over the years, realtors have helped clients prepare their homes for the market with suggestions and advice. As more people are viewing homes online and watching HGTV shows, staging has become more popular and a whole new industry has been created,” Wanda Richards, founder and CEO of Shows Great Photography and Staging, tells Roanoke Virginia HOME. After working as a Roanoke realtor for three decades, a friend asked if Richards would stage her vacant home. She added her own furniture and then—as a trained photographer—also provided images for the newly polished space. It had been on the market for months; following her “intervention,” a contract was written in less than 30 days. “I figured I was onto something that would help move homes in a depressed real estate market,” Richards says. Today, her company has the goods to furnish as many as 18 homes at a time—and she says that the art of staging typically brings listings to term within 28 days. In 2018, her company also photographed 1,400 homes in Southwest and Central Virginia. She stresses that in addition to staging, “Studies

have shown that professionally photographed homes sell faster and for more money.” At the least, most realtors now coach home sellers with tested tips and tools to attract the greatest number of potential buyers. First impressions matter, so we begin curbside. “Let’s start at the front entrance before you even get inside, because this is where potential home buyers spend the most time waiting for the realtor to unlock the lockbox,” Richards offers. “A fresh doormat, clean front door and a fresh coat of paint on the front door go a long way. Add a nice wreath. Clean those door jams. In season, it is good to add some yellow plants in pots by the front door. Yellow puts people in the buying mood.” And then: Trim low hanging limbs and branches so buyers see the home from the street, she advises. Add fresh mulch, trim shrubs and bushes, clean windows and shutters. Pressure wash the outside if needed. Store trashcans out of sight. “And the backyard should be neat and clean. Please pick up the dog poop!” Once inside, it’s all about decluttering and “hotel clean.” Get the scrub brush and Spic & Span ready, Richards advises: “Clean, clean, clean.” Make sure to declutter, including countertops and surfaces. “New towels for bathrooms, preferably white and fluffy. Well lighted areas: Keep lamps on when your home is being

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shown,” she continues. “Have a trusted friend give it the smell test, because a lot of times we cannot smell odors in our own homes.” And get rid of old, outdated wallpaper. In fact, here’s an interesting factoid: Wallpaper ranks just below pet smells among elements that most turn off buyers. Now, taking the house room by room, let us count the ways to most effectively stage. 1. The foyer should be clutter-free. No coat racks or coats and shoes. A nice table with a lamp is welcoming, if there is room. A bowl of wrapped candy adds ambiance. 2. Kitchen counters should be clear except for a few accessories. The kitchen sink and appliances must be squeaky clean… yes, potential buyers will look inside your stove so make sure it’s wiped down. Remove everything hanging on the front of your fridge. Richards says, “I can tell why someone is selling their home by the things they have on their refrigerator… doctor’s appointment reminders mean health issues, lunch menus mean outgrowing the home… get the picture?” 3. Living rooms and family rooms usually contain too much furniture. Pare down to give the look and feel of more space. Colorful new throw pillows make photos pop online. 4. Dining rooms are for dining only. “They are not home offices, craft rooms or areas for paying bills. Get rid of everything else,” she insists. 5. In family rooms, remove pet bowls and beds when your home is being shown or photographed. And throughout the home, put away personal photos, religious items and personal awards. In other words, take yourself out of the picture. 6. The master bedroom is a retreat. New bedding goes a long way, as do lamps that are the right height for the bed. Add fresh pillows, then deep clean surfaces and add fluffy towels—and again, no personal items. 7. Master bath, again, “clean, clean, clean,” Richards says. No personal mementos on the vanity. Fresh towels. For secondary baths and bedrooms, the same applies, with white towels and fresh, modern bedding. Richards has a few more tips of the trade for savvy homeowners. Declutter closets. “You want to remove half of the items in your closet; this makes it look like you have plenty of storage,” she says. “It’s a good time to rent a storage unit if you need to, or donate excess stuff.” Also, keep it light inside. Make sure every light bulb works—and use cooler daylight bulbs instead of the old-fashioned kind that cast a yellow glow. Open curtains and blinds. Simply, “Let the light in.” Also, mop, dust, vacuum, wash windows and baseboards. Remember that folks will look in your cupboards, under your sinks and in your closets. Now that your home has been staged to look its very finest for potential buyers, here’s a query that remains relevant: among renovations, what provides the best value when selling a home? If homeowners have a property that is inconsistent in its updates, where should dollars be focused before listing? Richards advises, “If you are on a limited budget, but have some money to spend, use it for new light fixtures, fresh paint and refreshing hardwood floors or changing out carpets.” Make repairs that matter. Repair squeaky doors, fix chipped paint, remove worn carpets. If hardwood floors are in disrepair, at the least, place a new area rug over them. With a larger budget, new kitchen countertops and stainless steel appliances are a R o a n o ke Va l l e y H O M E S p r i n g 2 0 1 9

good investment. “You can also give your outdated cabinets a new look by having them professionally painted. And bathrooms can be updated with new paint, light fixtures and vanities,” she advises. Alongside the staging “do’s,” there are plenty more “do nots” to heed. Foremost, don't take it personally. You are not selling your home; you are selling a house. To get top dollar, emotionally detach from thinking about those attending an open house as your guests. Don’t be offended by potential buyer feedback and trust in your realtor’s experience to know what works when staging. “There are lots of horror stories we have heard over the past few years,” Richards says with a laugh. “Please remember that depersonalizing and decluttering are very important. Be sure to remove your dirty underwear and make those beds. You would be surprised at the number of homes we go in to photograph and the beds are unmade and they knew we were coming.”✦

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IMPROVE windows

the art of light




Chances are unless you live in a brand new home you have given some thought to replacement windows. Initially conceived as an affordable way to replace dated and inefficient windows without having to replace exterior materials of the home, replacement, or retrofit windows are designed to fit into an existing window opening. Historically these replacements were almost universally unimaginative: made of aluminum or vinyl, with plastic fittings. They were an improvement on drafty, single pane glass windows, but aesthetically, they were, in a word, blah.

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According to Reed Newton, Project Manager for Architectural Windows of Virginia, the number one reason motivating today’s homeowners to look at replacement windows is energy savings. “There are many reasons our clients are looking at replacement windows for their homes,” explains Newton, “but energy efficiency is usually at the top of the list.” Today’s replacement windows, however, are definitely not your grandmother’s replacement windows. They now come in multiple materials and colors, sporting technology and energy efficiency that would impress NASA. Thanks to an unfortunately short-lived tax break in 2009–2010, that sent many homeowners clamoring for energy efficient windows that actually complimented their homes, the industry responded with an exciting array of products to suit almost any taste and style of home. “In addition to energy efficiency, customers are looking to replace old or dilapidated windows with ones that are aesthetically pleasing, noise reducing and that compliment the style of their home,” says Newton. Quality replacement windows, when done right, have the potential to improve a home’s curb appeal, enhance its décor and increase a home’s value, all while saving homeowners money in heating and cooling costs every month. Replacing a home’s windows is an investment, however and not a tiny one. There are many styles of replacement windows out there—and many levels of quality as well. Homeowners considering window replacement should arm themselves with research: keeping in mind both their home’s location and age, as well as trends that best suit their individual home. As with most home improvements, a little bit of homework will ensure that you are getting the right product for your home. Materials

Pre-World War II, there were mostly two types of window frame materials: wood and steel. Around the mid-century new technologies abounded, making lighter metals such as aluminum a cheaper alternative and this was followed closely by vinyl, so depending on the age of your home, you may be looking to change out these materials for today’s durable hybrids. Though vinyl window frames are still the most common, there are several materials used to manufacture replacement windows: wood, of course, but also aluminum, wood composite, vinyl and even fiberglass composites. Components have been enhanced to improve durability to withstand most climates without peeling, fading or rotting. Most quality vinyl windows have 10-20 year guarantees. Wood replacement windows are definitely the gold standard. Today’s wood replacement windows undergo a process called “cladding” in which the wood—usually pine, fir, or mahogany— is wrapped (think wrapping paper on a birthday present) in a metal, such as aluminum, or a composite, such as fiberglass, making them exceptionally durable and low-maintenance. Steve Dawson, Manager of Neathawk Window and Door, explains that clad-products are increasingly popular in the replacement window market due to their versatility and durability. “The aluminum clad products enjoy a great deal of popularity because they are extremely durable, come in a wide array of styles, options and colors and allow clients the benefit of the warmth and beauty of wood on the interior and the protection of cladding on the exterior.” Unlike un-clad wood replacements, clad-wood will never need to be painted and the products are guaranteed for up to 50 years. To add to the popularity of clad r vhomemaga zine .com 67

replacement windows, Newton also points out that replacement windows can be ordered, “pre-finished” in colors, so the frames won’t need painting. “Our customers love that replacement windows can be ordered pre-finished white, for example, to match the existing exterior and interior trim, which means that the windows will not need to be painted,” says Reed. Ratings

Efficiency is key to this project, so how do you know you are looking at the most efficient products? According to both Dawson and Newton, the right place to start is by insisting upon products that are Energy Star certified. These products go through a rigorous certification process designed by the US Department of Energy and the EPA. Secondly, look for products that bear the National Fenestration Rating Council’s labels. These will include detailed information on the products such as U Factor (which measures the rate at which heat escapes the window), Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (which measures how much solar radiation will penetrate the window) and Air Leakage. Look for products with airtight seals for window openings and double or even triplepaned glass filled with an insulating gas such as Argon. Current trends

You’ve diligently done your research. You’ve found a line of windows that fits your budget and that meets or exceeds your efficiency guidelines. Now what? Well, now comes the fun part: individualizing the project for your own home with an eye to what you and your family will enjoy, what will compliment your home’s architecture and décor and what will have universal appeal should you decide to sell in the future. A look at a few current trends in the replacement window market should give you a sound starting point. Replacement windows by definition are designed to replace existing windows and because of that, are chosen to fit into the original window opening; the replacement window will be the same size and shape as the window it replaces. However, though conforming to an existing opening limits the size of 6 8

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your replacement window, it needn’t limit the other style choices. Are you interested in changing up the look of your classic double-hung paned windows for something more contemporary? Consider the unfussy ease of pass-through sliders or the increased ventilation of today’s modern casements. There are many styles to choose from to give your home a new look while complimenting your home’s architectural style and age. By far the most significant trend in recent years has been a departure from basic white replacement window frames. “Dark colors—black or even dark bronze are very popular now,” Dawson explains. Dark colored frames, black, brown, bronze, even dark hunter green, are popping up more and more in the residential market. Newton agrees. “While we still see a majority of people ordering white replacement windows around here, there has been a definite uptick in orders for colored frames. In fact, we carry more than 20 colors now and though we haven’t used every one, we are getting close.” Fantastic new features, going beyond color and style, have been incorporated into today’s array of replacement windows.

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Homeowners can now find replacements that have extra narrow frames, increasing the glass—and therefore the light—inside your home. There are also replacement windows that have retractable screens, which eliminate the need to remove, store and replace window screens. There are even replacement windows designed with safety and security in mind—windows that come with integrated security systems, which align with your home’s existing security system and others that come with blinds between the glass panes providing an effortless way to achieve privacy without ever having to dust blinds again.

U-FACTORS: How fast a window will lose heat during cold weather. The higher the number, the greater the heat loss a window displays. Generally, look for a number lower than .3 SOLAR HEAT GAIN COEFFICIENT (SHGC): How well a window will perform in the warmer months, by measuring how much solar radiation penetrates. A good SHGC will be .32 or less. AIR LEAKAGE: How much air passes through a window. The lower, the better. (.1 is the lowest possible, .2 is good, .3 is average and .4 and above is unacceptable)

© 2019 Kolbe & Kolbe Millwork Co., Inc. | Photo © Roger Wade

Whether you are looking to upgrade your home’s efficiency, replace ugly or nonfunctional windows, or simply increase the beauty of your home, replacement windows are an excellent choice. From space-age materials to exciting new colors, to features designed to make life safer and more relaxed, the new generation of replacement windows has a lot to offer area homeowners desiring an upgrade in energy efficiency and aesthetics. ✦


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LIVE culinary corner



Although exciting, moving to a new home can be difficult and a bit lonely, regardless of whether the move is to a different neighborhood across town, or across the country. Neighbors frequently want to welcome new-comers but grow tired of showing up with the same uninspired plates of brownies. Sometimes it feels as though we go through the long, cold winter alone, barely seeing our neighbors. Now that the weather is warming up, people long to get outside and socialize. Throwing a block party can reacquaint old neighbors and welcome new ones. Our neighborhood is made up of many cul-de-sacs, so we tend to gather in one of those. You can designate a front or back yard for the gathering—have “Cocktails on the Corner,” or if there is a public space nearby, have a “Party in the Park.” Whatever you call it, the point is to get people together over food and drink and enjoy each others’ company. Keep the menu simple and ask everyone to bring something. You may want to assign certain types of food, so you don’t end up with six bowls of guacamole and no chips!

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All of these recipes can easily be doubled or tripled to feed a crowd.


Serves 4 as a main course or 8 as an appetizer It’s nice to include an option for those who are eating low-carb, but these meatballs are so delicious, everyone will enjoy them! 1 pound ground chicken 1/2 c almond flour 2 T cream cheese (cut into small cubes to make mixing easier) 1 packet dry ranch dressing mix 1/2 t salt 1/4 t pepper 1/4 t garlic powder In a large bowl, mix ground chicken, almond flour, cream cheese, contents of the dry ranch packet, salt, pepper and garlic powder. Using wet hands, form the meat mixture into 1-1/2-inch round meatballs. (The mixture should be sticky and wet hands help; keep wetting your hands as you go). Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and add a little olive oil. When hot, add the meatballs, working in batches and adjusting the temperature if the meatballs are browning too quickly. You just want to brown them a bit, they won’t be cooked all the way through. Once all the meatballs are browned, transfer to a baking sheet and bake in a 350 preheated oven for about 10 minutes until the meatballs register 165 degrees on an instant-read thermometer or cut into a meatball to check that it is cooked through.

Wash the cilantro carefully to remove any sandy materials, dry and cut off the end of the stems. Twist the bunch, fold over and twist again. Chop the leaves and stems. Small-dice the onion and combine onion and cilantro on a cutting board. Sprinkle with salt. Chop through the pile with a chef’s knife, then take the side of the knife blade and press the salt into the onions and cilantro. Repeat chopping and pressing until the mixture resembles a chunky paste. I really think this is what makes my guacamole different. To chop the jalapeno, wear gloves to avoid burning your fingers. Also, be careful not to touch your eyes while working with peppers. Remove seeds from the jalapeno (that’s where a lot of heat is), then finely chop the pepper. Peel the avocados, removing the pits and place in a bowl with the onion/cilantro mixture. Mix with a fork to desired consistency. Squeeze the juice of one lime over the avocado mixture and taste. This is also when I add the jalapeno. Depending on the size of the avocados and the juiciness of the limes, you will probably want to add more lime juice. (I usually add the juice of one lime per avocado. This sounds like a lot, but it keeps the guacamole from turning brown and we love the tanginess.) I usually add extra salt as well, but it’s important to taste as you go as the ratio of ingredients is a little different every time.

These are very flavorful and moist by themselves, but dipping in Ranch dressing is also recommended. They can be served hot or at room temperature. (Adapted from the Instant Pot Keto Cookbook)

MARSHA’S CLASSIC GUACAMOLE Serves 6 (or sometimes 2—haha)

This is one of my most requested foods from friends, family and clients. My daughter and I took a cooking class in Mexico a couple of years ago and I learned the techniques. You can add tomatoes, garlic, etc., but I like to keep it simple. 2 ripe avocados 1 small bunch cilantro 1/2 small sweet onion Fresh jalapeno to taste 1/2 t kosher salt Juice of 1–3 limes


A signature cocktail can make a party feel special. Sometimes sangria can be overly sweet, but this one is light refreshing and quick to assemble. Just make sure you label the punch bowl or pitcher as “Adult Drink” and provide other non-alcoholic options for the kiddos and those who don’t wish to imbibe. 1 bottle chilled rosé 2 c chilled pineapple juice 1 pint raspberries 1 pint blackberries 1 c pineapple, chopped Mix all ingredients in a large pitcher, punch bowl, or even a vase. Serve over ice. (Adapted from The Roasted Root) 7 2

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GROWN UP CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES Makes about 30 cookies Years ago, I worked at the lovely kitchen store, Culina, in Lynchburg’s Boonsboro Shopping Center. Lance Yeatman taught a cookie class in the store’s kitchen and this was one of the recipes. I’ve made a few tweaks over the years; friends and family insist this is the only chocolate chip cookie I should make. It requires a few special ingredients, but if you can’t find them at your grocery store, you can always order online. Trust me, it’s worth the effort! 1 c (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature 2/3 c packed brown sugar 1/2 c granulated sugar 1/4 c golden syrup (preferably Lyle’s— if your store has an international aisle, it’s in the British section) 1 large egg 1 T vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste 1/4 c malted milk powder (preferably Carnation) 1/2 t instant espresso powder 2 3/4 c all-purpose flour 1 1/8 t salt

1/2 t baking powder 1/4 t baking soda 1 pound bittersweet chocolate chips (preferably Ghirardelli 60% bittersweet baking chips) Adjust oven rack to the middle position and preheat to 375 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. In a large bowl, cream together butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar and golden syrup. Beat in egg, vanilla, malted milk powder and espresso powder. Add flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda; stir until thoroughly combined. Stir in chocolate chips. Drop the dough by rounded tablespoonfuls (or use a small ice cream scoop) 3 inches apart onto prepared baking sheets. Bake, one sheet at a time, for 10 minutes, until golden brown at the edges; the center will appear slightly under-cooked. Transfer the sheet of baked cookies to a wire rack. Let cool for at least 10 minutes before removing cookies from parchment. ✦

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DESIGN creative spaces

CREATIVE SPACES MAKE A HOUSE A HOME local realtors reveal their personal favorite spaces BY K AT H E R I N E FU LG H U M K N O P F

Realtors know houses well and they recognize what makes them unique. Sometimes that means keeping up with the latest trends in kitchens and baths; at times it means identifying the most essential features in a home. Being a Realtor is a vocation for someone who loves houses, so what spaces do they create in their own residence that makes it home? “I love our location,” says Dickie Roe, a realtor with Long and Foster’s Electric Road Office. “We moved here 42 years ago and we stayed because we like the proximity to the school.” Crystal Spring Elementary School is just a few doors down and across the street. Living in his neighborhood, watching neighbors of diverse age and demographics come and go about their daily lives is what makes South Roanoke a vibrant and busy community. “When we moved here, our oldest daughter was in the first grade, so we appreciated the location as first our children and now our grandchildren can easily walk to the school.” Over the years the Roes added on and improved the home. It was a basic colonial and one of the first things they put in was a large patio. Dickie is famous for his barbeque, logically, the back patio made the perfect place for a grill and a spot to entertain. Then in the 80s, they added an addition to give them a first-floor family room and a spacious master bedroom. Dickie adds, “Last year we updated the kitchen, my wife, Nene did a fantastic job designing it. We love it!” But more about the grilling, the barbeque and the patio: “For this size house, we have a fairly large patio,” Dickie says. He loves to barbeque and has lots of equipment: a grill, a Green Egg, a smoker, as well as oyster tables he built himself. All this gear allows for grilling and preparing the delicious food for which Dickie is well known. Dickie hunts and makes a tempting venison chili—in batches of 15 gallons. His Brunswick stew from a fullflavored recipe requires a slow boil of the chickens and the Boston butts. As early as his twenties, Dickie began treating friends and neighbors to the tasty fare he stirs up on his patio. He even bought a “Pig Cooker” a large barbeque you pull behind a truck so you can roast a whole pig on site. This addition to his arsenal makes his talents a veritable moveable feast he can take to an event or even a little farther afield to the family’s beach house! Cyndi Fletcher with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Premier, Realtors, has worked in the real estate field for 28 years; therefore, her perspective on the trends that come and go in home sales and marketing is definitive. A favorite home feature today—that is important to Cyndi also—is entertainment space. With our busy 74

lives, inviting guests to your home for most of us means we want to do something we can plan quickly and efficiently ergo formal living space is less critical. Casual entertaining is what most people embrace, kitchens are a priority and right now the size of these rooms is as important as the finishes. In Cyndi and Jeff’s home, they have guests for dinner often so they did something ingenious—they flipped the living and dining rooms. Now they have a stylish and chic room arrangement where the deck is right off the dining room. They start with cocktails al fresco and move into the dining room for the meal. Cyndi loves to fix a beautiful spread replete with a fantastic flower arrangement and exquisite china that complement the season. She is known for her unique and award-winning flower arrangements, so the table setting is as eye-catching as the meal. With three silver patterns and two china and crystal patterns inherited from both families, Cyndi’s dinners are spectacular events. They are uncomplicated, but elegant affairs that last for hours as they all sit around the table and talk after a delicious meal. Cane and wooden carved chairs from Jeff’s family surround a glass table with a black iron base. The large crystal chandelier came from Cyndi’s mother, Gran Ruth; it hung over her dining room table. Cyndi has fond memories of the lights through the crystals shining on family dinners where family and friends lingered around the table to talk after the meal. Cyndi hopes to pass these traditions on to her children and it looks like she has. Her son Will wrote about his New Year’s Day memories in a post this year, “One of the distinct smells of my childhood was collard greens and black-eyed peas in my Mom’s kitchen every New Year’s Day. I’m doing my best to make sure Elizabeth (Cyndi and Jeff’s first grandchild) has similar memories, although I’m not sure my cooking will ever be as good as my Mom’s. Here’s to a great 2019!” Well said. Creating memories and traditions is an excellent way to connect one generation to the next. Family recipes, china and heirlooms can link the past to the present. Let’s hope these small details stay constant as they, along with the creative spaces we craft to distinguish them, give unique touches that make our dwellings truly a home. ✦ R o a n o ke Va l l e y H O M E S p r i n g 2 0 1 9

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DESIGN multi-functional furniture

Versatile Furniture




he urge to declutter this time of year is practically inescapable. Spring has officially sprung and with that, we yearn for freshness and simplicity. The desire may seem even stronger these days with the increasingly popular Marie Kondo mantra making its way into our lives. If you haven’t heard of her yet (do you live under a rock?), Kondo is a professional organizer and author with a brand-new Netflix series out called Tidying Up With Marie Kondo and she is all the rage right now. Her method involves keeping only things that “spark joy,” treasuring what you have and creating displays for you to value each individual object. Perhaps you have a cherished piece of furniture that you truly cannot part ways with, but you aren’t quite sure what to do with it. Or maybe you need ideas for making the most of smaller rooms. I’m not here to preach to you about Kondo’s ways, but I am here to help you simplify those tight spaces and expand functionality with pieces of furniture that do double duty.

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When it comes to furniture in smaller rooms or spaces, built-in storage is an absolute must. There literally isn’t room for useless pieces, so each item should have a purpose, or even better, multiple purposes. Ottomans are a great example of versatility in that some open up to reveal a tray and storage space to be used for kids’ toys, remotes, video game controllers and more. These are usually pretty lightweight and can be moved around the room easily and used as footrests, side tables, or even extra seating when needed. A pretty and cozy storage bench goes along the same lines by housing blankets, pillows, or shoes, also providing additional seating. Coffee tables can be designed to contain large drawers or hidden compartments to use as storage. Some can even open up to reveal a cooler! A bookshelf is probably one of the most modifiable pieces of furniture. Of course, it can always be used as intended—to hold books—but there are so many other great ways to organize and display different objects using bookcases. As a media console, store all your movies, music, gaming devices, TV boxes and more. Organize your shoe collection shelf by shelf and allow for easy access by using them in a mudroom, entryway area, or closet A smaller bookshelf could be used as a nightstand and serve as a stylish way to store your bedside needs. For a spalike touch, place a small-scale bookshelf in a bathroom to hold towels and other essentials. A large bookcase could be used as a makeshift wall to divide a room—just pull the bookshelf away from the wall, library-style. Make sure to stabilize and secure bookshelves to the floor or wall to prevent them from tipping and becoming safety hazards. Make the most out of the furniture you already have and give your favorite heirloom and traditional pieces new flavor by using a little ingenuity and inventiveness. Take the armoire, for example, which usually houses linens, coats, or other clothing in the bedroom. Since most houses are equipped with fairly spacious closets these days, try thinking outside the box and come up with another, more useful, design for your freestanding cabinet. Perhaps it could be used as an office workspace— storing papers, books, file folders, pens and markers and a laptop—that can all be closed at a moment’s notice. A chic, vintage wardrobe could be used for extra storage in the dining room. An old bachelor’s chest doesn’t have to be just for garment storage; a beautiful, substantial chest could be used as an island in the kitchen. Add rear cabinets and a marble or granite top and you’ve got yourself a new piece of furniture. For a less intimidating project with a smaller chest, install front hinges on


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the top drawer, slide it out and transform it into a “bar cart” in the blink of an eye. A vintage secretary can also be used as a small bar area. Store an assortment of fancy drinking glasses in the shelf area behind pretty, glass doors and use the desk portion as a spot for a tray filled with bottles and all of the necessities. Add a vase with flowers or a small lamp to give the older piece a pop of new life. The same style of furniture could also be used as a linen closet in a guest room or bathroom. Perhaps you have inherited dining table that doesn’t get much use. Rather than letting it sit there useless, why not push the table up against a wall when not entertaining guests and use it as a desk or office area. You could even make it kid-friendly by cutting down the legs and creating a place for children to do arts and crafts. Dressers are also versatile pieces that can be used for silverware and linen storage, as nightstands, or as television and media consoles. Now is a perfect time to inventory space and furnishings you already have and evaluate how to best use them. What can you consolidate and simplify? What wasted furniture pieces can be refreshed and brought back to life by simply moving them to a new room and giving them a new purpose? Using a little imagination and mixing things up can go a long way to make every piece of furniture customizable to your needs, yet still “fit” in a fresh way. Make this spring your season to re-think, re-purpose and re-use! ✦

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GARDEN historic garden day On Friday, May 3rd, a Kick-off Party at Black Dog Salvage, 902 13th Street SW, Roanoke, features renowned chefs providing tasty nibbles and celebrities from the DIY show, Salvage Dawgs. Proceeds benefit a local garden project at the Ronald McDonald House of SW Virginia. Limited tickets are available, $100pp.

More information about Historic Garden Day in Roanoke can be found by visiting

Lovin’ Life in the Mountains!

Historic Garden Day January, February, March and April showers are sure to have secured an outstanding May of flora and fauna. There is no better way to slough off the slow crawl of winter—the grey and soggy days that are the dormant season in the Blue Ridge—than to give way to the favorite week that harkens spring: Historic Garden Week in Virginia! Historic Garden Day in the Roanoke Valley is Saturday May 4th. This year’s theme, “Lovin’ Life in the Mountains,” will afford tour participants a diverse array of architecture and design, as the homes featured include a 1932 cottage as well as mid-century modern and ranch-style craftsman homes. The views

of the Roanoke Valley are paramount in many of the homes and as these gracious homeowners can attest, they are certainly “Lovin’ Life in the Mountains!” The Roanoke Valley Garden Club and Mill Mountain Garden Club host Historic Garden Day in Roanoke and have arranged shuttle service to the homes on tour via Roanoke’s Star Line Trolley. Trolley pick-up is located at tour headquarters, South Roanoke United Methodist Church, 2330 S. Jefferson Street. Enjoy Palooza in the Park at South Roanoke United Methodist Church, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. with food trucks and vendors. Seating is provided.

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Charming Cottage on Crystal Spring 2315 Crystal Spring Avenue Stepping onto a front porch with lush green plants, wicker seating and colorful cushions, the stage is set for this joyful house. The Chippendale storm door opens to a home full of color and interesting collections: this three-bedroom home is a feast for the eyes. Inside this 1932 cottage, the homeowner has amassed a beautiful array of blue and white porcelain vases and bowls, striking china statues and an impressive art collection. Ted Turner, Mary Boxley Bullington, Jamie Nervo, Nene Roe, Mary Jane Burch and other local and Virginia artist’s works blends seamlessly with antique furniture—both family pieces and ones collected. The thrill of the hunt can be seen as each room showcases her colorful needlepoint pillows, unique fabrics and light fixtures. The dining room features a charming red bamboo chandelier that is a gift from her mother. Off the darling stone floored back porch, a brick patio offers a cool spot to sit surrounded by a garden of hostas and hydrangeas. 8 0

Mountainside Retreat with Southern California Flare 3912 Bosworth Drive The current owners of this rambling 1965 renovated ranch-style home, have made it their goal to create an atmosphere of serenity and relaxation in this mountainside retreat. This home’s architectdesigned transformation features dramatic cathedral ceilings and floor to ceiling glass in the great room, an open floor plan and a newly renovated custom kitchen. The home has been decorated in restful shades of silver sage, with notable artworks by John Wiercioch, Erich Paulsen and a collection of O. Winston Link prints. A stunning 1930s French chandelier hangs in the dining room and family antiques are also on display, however, the real star of this residence is the mountain views. Expanses of glass showcase the stunning panoramas visible from every room, the generous porches, patio and the recently completed stone-hued swimming pool. The surrounding gardens reflect a casual French style and feature natural, woodland plants, stonescaping and a charming koi pond. R o a n o ke Va l l e y H O M E S p r i n g 2 0 1 9

Peakwood Perch, 3614 Peakwood Drive Gracing the top of the hillside stretch of Peakwood Drive, lies this “empty-nester” haven. A contemporary twist on a classic mid-century (1950s era) ranch style home, this bright, sun-filled home has undergone several large-scale renovations inside and out, from the gracious timber craftsman-style entrance, to the sumptuous marble master bath and custom kitchen. Bold dashes of color are sprinkled throughout this home and contemporary furnishings mingle seamlessly with traditional antiques, such as a century-old chandelier in the master bedroom and burled wood dining room table. This residence was primarily designed to showcase the owners’ extensive art collection and features both local artists and art collected from a lifetime of international travel. There are multiple pieces on display in each room. Because of its elevation, the mountain views from this “nest” are panoramic and can be enjoyed from every room and the expansive back deck overlooking the Roanoke Valley all the way to Salem. Peakwood Terrace, 3743 Peakwood Drive Built in 1973, this French Colonial style home enjoys a blend of exceptional art and exquisite antiques throughout the home. A Parrott theme gives nod to a family name with watercolors and several statue collections of these bright birds. The formal rooms flow into an open kitchen with gorgeous taupe granite and a family room that overlooks a picturesque terraced lawn. Artists’ works by Ted Turner, Gari Stephenson, Eric Fitzpatrick, Ed Bordett, Jedd Gellett, Laura Trevey, Nancy Mahone, Ernest Johnson and Ubaldo Ballerini fill every room of this fourbedroom home. Two of the landscapes in the den are by the homeowner who has an eye for color and detail. The home features many Asian pieces—vases, paintings, screens and tapestries as well as antique bamboo chairs. In the front hall, a needlepoint scroll showcases another of the homeowner’s talents. The master bedroom’s French doors open onto a deck. Below a beautiful brick patio offers the perfect dinner party spot as it opens to an expansive terraced lawn with a shade garden sprinkled with blooming plants nestled under trees that lead into scenic woods. The Treehouse, 3322 West Ridge Road Perched among treetops with a spectacular view, Architect Ed Maxey designed a showcase home of glass and stone in 1954. Beautifully restored, the fourth owners kept original details like marble windowsills and mirrored doors in this unique five-bedroom treehouse. From the custom wallpapered entry hall with a newly installed elevator to the spacious living room that opens onto a glass railed porch perfect for cocktails, this home is sighted for mountain and wildlife views—most recently a black bear sighting. Heirloom quilts, amazing mixed media art and paintings by Vera Dickerson, Mike Piggott, Gari Stephenson, Bonnie Neuhoff and Cantreau illustrate a love of collecting. A mosaic tiled mirror, a silver tea service and an Elk Rack shot by Teddy Roosevelt tender interesting stories. A cherished crystal and wrought iron chandelier hangs above a farmtable surrounded by Lucite chairs. Owl and squirrel wallpaper enhance the forest effect. The black wood goat next to her mother’s china cabinet, the white pickled floors, the cozy wooded terraces off the sitting room and kitchen—every detail suits this treehouse. ✦



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ADVERTISER index Amy Cullen, Realtor................................................. 24 Baron Enterprises..................................................... 24 Cyndi and Jeff Fletcher, Realtors.....................48 Berkshire Hathaway-Smith Mountain Lake Real Estate...................................25 Better Sofas.................................................................44 Brandon Oaks..............................................................57 By Design Interiors.....................................................18 Capps Home Building Center...............................4 Carilion Clinic.............................................................. 43 Closet Storage Organizers..................................64 Construction Marketing........................................... 9 Dixie Products............................................................ 69 Dominion Risk Advisors..........................................17 Elaine Stephenson Interiors................................ 59 F&S Building Innovations.....................................84 Fabulous Finds SML................................................ 36 Ferguson......................................................................... 61 First Bank and Trust.................................................22 General Shale Brick................................................. 33 George’s Flowers.......................................................32 Grand Home Furnishings...................................... 28 Halifax Fine Furnishings.........................................77 Hamlin Builders.......................................................... 68 Jeannine Hanson........................................................32 Kevin Hurley Photography....................................73 LinDor Arts...................................................................... 5 Magnolia Décor.......................................................... 42 Margaret Craye, Realtor..........................................12 Member One Federal Credit Union................... 7 MKB Realtors................................................................23 N-Hance............................................................................ 8 National Pools.............................................................. 10 Neathawk Window and Door............................ 70 Pitman Construction...............................................40 Prescott Construction............................................. 16 Punch Boutique......................................................... 36 Reid’s Fine Furnishings...........................................78 Richfield Living............................................................47 Rick Payne MKB Realtors..................................... 65 Roanoke Country Club.......................................... 45 Ronnie Mitchell and Son Landscaping............13 Scott Avis, MKB Realtor........................................... 3 Scott Kitts Salon.........................................................18 Seven Oaks Landscape Hardscape................. 19 Skyline Door & Hardware..................................... 68 Skyline National Bank............................................. 49 St Jude Dream Home...............................................15 Steger Creek.................................................................77 Susan Bailey, Realtor................................................27 Taubman Museum......................................................17 The Columns................................................................ 24 The Little Gallery....................................................... 83 ValleyStar Credit Union............................................ 2 Virginia State Games..............................................48 Virginia Building Solutions..................................... 6 Virginia Mountain Mortgage................................47 Whitt Carpet One..................................................... 42 Yarid’s..............................................................................44 82


Alison Conte is a Roanoke Valley transplant originally from Newport News and a graduate of William & Mary. Alison and her family share their home with their 13-year-old westie, Rocky. As well as being a community volunteer, Alison is also the Children’s Choir Director at Second Presbyterian Church. HOME MAGAZINE EDITOR, ANNE MARIE POORE, HAS A FEW QUESTIONS FOR ALISON CONTE, COCHAIR OF THE UPCOMING ART GO BLOOM EVENT AT THE TAUBMAN MUSEUM

amp: What is your go-to host/hostess gift? AC: Something with Cocktail Napkins—I love Cocktail Napkins! amp: If you could have dinner

with anyone from history, who would it be? AC: Queen Elizabeth I—How interesting it would

be to have an audience with the most powerful woman in the world when the world was so treacherous! amp: What is your favorite first sign of spring? AC:: I always get excited when I see the first daffodils in bloom! amp: What are you reading right now? AC:: Unsheltered by Barbara Kingsolver—I grabbed it when I saw it was set in Roanoke and Vineland, NJ—both cities to which I am connected. amp: What is your pet peeve? AC: My college major was English and I have a difficult time when people use “I” and “me” incorrectly (my own children included!) amp: What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever had? AC: My friend’s mother always told us not to worry too much about what we were wearing because no one would remember the next day. amp: What is the next big event you are most looking forward to? AC: Art Go Bloom at the Taubman Museum of Art May 16-19! This event combines two of my favorite things: art and flowers. I’m fortunate to have been asked to co-chair this event for the second time and I’m looking forward to seeing the floral arrangements interpreting works of art placed throughout all of the Museum galleries and public spaces. I am most excited about the special programs that will take place during this event! Opening night will feature a not-to-be-missed fresh flower and foliage fashion show with creations designed and created by Virginia Tech Students. There will be flower workshops and demonstrations, a High Tea at the Hotel Roanoke and a Sunday Brunch at the Museum. amp: What did you want to be when you grew up, as a child? AC: Surprisingly, I wanted to be a pediatrician until I was in 9th grade. Once I went to high school, music classes and a summer job at Colonial Williamsburg changed my direction. amp: Who is your favorite artist? AC: I don’t really have one favorite artist, but I am drawn to the great impressionists—Renoir, Manet, Pissarro .amp: What would you tell the 25-year old version of yourself? AC: “Listen more! You have so much to learn!” amp: What design rule are you proud to break? AC: I don’t like “sets” of furniture! amp: What is your proudest accomplishment? AC: I am most proud of the accomplishments of my husband and children. As for my achievements, I am proud of any positive influence I may have had on the children to whom I have taught music! amp: What inspires you most about Roanoke? AC: Roanoke, for a city of its size and location, has a tremendous amount of culture and cultural opportunities!

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Artful Living

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Roanoke Valley Home Magazine Spring 2019  

Roanoke Valley Home Magazine Spring 2019