Here I am enjoying my fortieth summer. Nothing has changed about summer, really. It’s still hot. Bugs still come out in droves and freak me out. The yard still needs to be mowed. And I decide to redecorate. Oh yes, my yearly scramble to make my house a showcase. The interior walls of my home must feel like some kind of chameleon. They change color, at minimum, once a year. I just simply cannot find a color I love. This is mostly the fault of home improvement shows and magazines. I’m sure I’m not alone in this. How many of you pick up that magazine or watch that show and think, “I want my room to look exactly like that”? Then it’s off to the home improvement store to begin a conversion so grand you’re surely to land in some Home Makeover Hall of Fame.
Unfortunately, for me anyway, it never happens. Last time, I chose this eye popping, froggy green paint to offset the bright pink, emo-punk girl paint I love. Both were colors picked from my new duvet cover. It was going to be great! Well, here I am, six months later still having migraines from the glare. My room looks nothing like the picture. Instead, it looks as if some sixteen year old on the worst acid trip of their lives attacked my walls with a paint roller. Shabby Chic meets Zombie- Clown- Killer; that’s how I would describe it.
We can never be “just like the book or the show”. Really, we have to think about who we truly are, not who someone else is. It’s only a customized room if it’s, well, custom. We need to be more simplistic in our approach to decorating instead of trying to emulate what took a crew of people and thousands of dollars to create. Although, admittedly, I have seen some things in books or on the tube that looked like a five year old designed it. So, maybe having more money isn’t everything.
Simplicity and happiness are important when it comes to your home. If your home has you written all over it, there is no where you will ever find greater happiness. What I think you really have to do is to decide what really flips your skirt. What can you look at everyday and not get tired of? I love bright colors. But what I have learned is that I only need them in small amounts, not entire walls. Plus, there is too much pressure if I’m trying to create a look identical to something else. If I only worry with making something my own style, I can fluctuate.
That is probably the easiest way to decorate a room. Pick things that you like, but don’t buy anything right away. Let them walk around your brain for a few days. Let them settle in. If any of them give you acid indigestion, you’ll know they’re not right. I bet you’ll change your mind about several things you liked the first day. Then go back with your new ideas that you have let meld together, and take them home.
Paint samples are the most important savers of nervous breakdowns ever! Don’t purchase six gallons of that Kool-Aid grape color to begin with. Instead, get a decent sized sample and paint a good chunk of a wall. Let it dry before you make up your mind. Wait until you have seen it in the sun and the dark. No paint looks the same in different lighting or when it’s wet. If you still love it, then you stock up. And by all means, get enough to do your room the first time you go. Left overs are okay; you’ll have some for touch ups. But if you have to go back and have it mixed again, you may not get the exact same color.
Once you have been able to make a room that shouts out that it belongs to you, your home decorating will no longer be a chaotic game of simulation. Decorating isn’t only for those with a degree in design. I bet they didn’t teach them how to make exactly what you want anyway. You will feel far more relaxed and at ease in a room that doesn’t make you want to grab a paint roller and start over.
Redecorating is such an involved, time consuming ordeal that most of us don’t have the time or energy to do anything less than what we love. It’s all about simplification people. Make that room, your home, what you love regardless of what anyone else would think, and abide happily ever after surrounded by peace. I would recommend, however, not choosing the froggy green. It has retina burning qualities the likes of which you may never recover from.
Tammie Niewedde shares her life with 24, 21, and 16 year old sons. She also has a 2 year old grandson whose energy level reminds her exactly how old she is (40, and she owns that proudly!). In her home, you will find a 120 pound fur factory named Dexter and a few cats whom have decided that she is merely their staff. The root of her love for books, writing, and animals comes from being a child whose only siblings were books and her animals. She is a full-time student, mother, coordinator of all that is chaos, and a hopeless list maker. Most of her writing is creative non-fiction that describes her real life adventures. Her acerbic, biting sense of humor may capture your heart, or it may induce rage. Nonetheless what she writes is true to life. You can often find her hanging out with the kiddos, studying, reading, writing, and making lists…of everything! You can find her on Facebook!