• Brittany DeHart

Are you a "themer?"

If you've lived in your home for any length of time, you have most likely fallen into one, or more, of the following categories...

Category A). You have a favorite "place" you've been to or have always dreamt of going, so you decide to bring a little bit of that "place" into your home. Let's say, for example, that "place" is Paris. (I'm using Paris because this is a true life scenario of mine in my older teenage years and into my early adulthood). Since Paris is a place that you love so much, you want to be reminded of it on a regular basis and want others who enter your home to see your love as well. To broadcast your love, you raid the shelves of Hobby Lobby and purchase every Eiffel Tower figurine, picture and lamp they have, you over-accessorize your kitchen countertops, shelves and walls with chefs and cute signs that say, "Bon Appetit", your master bedroom becomes the place for all things "Amour", and, as if that's not enough, your bathroom gets its own personalization with a cute little sign that says, "La toilette." Oh, and you more than likely have a few dozen Fleur-de-lis symbols throughout your house!

Category B). You're a mom who wants the very best for your children, so you go all out in decorating their bedroom from floor to ceiling in their favorite character. Under some circumstances, you do it just so that they'll love their room enough to sleep in their own bed! Right?! When they're wee little ones, you decide to go with safe and maybe even gender neutral decor, so you go with Winnie the Pooh or Noah's Ark. Everything from bedding, to wall art, to stuffed animals, to the mobile hanging over the crib is in accordance with your chosen decor. Noah might as well have just used their room as the Ark itself! As the toddler years approach, everything changes to let's say, Mickey Mouse. You buy new stuffed animals, new pictures for the walls, new toys, new sheets, blankets and pillows. You put up a wallpaper boarder, at chair rail height, that goes around the whole room with the headshot of every one of Mickey's friends. If you're like we were, you go as far as making a head board in the shape of Mickey Mouse ears. With every new phase of your child's life, out goes the previous decor and in comes the flood of new favorites.

Not pictured are the Mickey ears, but they were all the way there once upon a time!

Category C). You have no idea what style or decor you like or even where to start so you leave it be. You desperately want a home that's full of the decor you love, but the thought of figuring out your style is too overwhelming. You may even have the mindset that if you're unable to do it all at once to make it all go together, you might as well not do it. Therefore, you have walls that are void of color, rooms that are void of comfort and a mind that is full of uncertainty.

Category D). You're just thankful to have a home to live in. If it's decorated, fine. If not, still just fine!

My goal in this post is to give you advice on how you can incorporate some of your or your family member's favorites without having to walk under the Eiffel Tower to get into your home or shake hands with every Disney character as you tuck your child in at night. Now, if you fall into an above mentioned category and wish to keep things as is, please do so. I never want to offend anyone or their decor preferences. If you feel like your trapped in "Themed Room" prison, as I did, then I hope this advice gives you ideas on how to escape.

Escape Plan for Category A). If you're wanting to bring part of your favorite "place" into your space, think about how that place makes you feel, it's scenery, some of the colors and textures around that area and what it is that really makes you love it so much. If it's a feeling of relaxation that you love, then bring that in through gentle and toned down colors. You can use soft throw blankets and accent pillows to bring in comfort and the placement of your furniture can be arranged so that it makes a room feel more inviting. You can bring in vibrancy and energy with accents of bolder and more vibrant colors through wall art, pillows and decorative accessories. Think a little deeper into why you love that place so much and bring touches of it into your space. If I had not escaped my themed room, my kids would think that Paris and Longview are neighboring cities!

Escape Plan for Category B). There's absolutely nothing wrong with giving your child a room they're in love with. I no doubt want my children to have a room where they love to play and sleep. Some of the best advice I can give you when it comes to your kiddo's room is to make the overall color palette and staple furniture pieces some that will last them for a while. As they change from one favorite character to another, you'll be able to make small changes with accent decor rather than redoing the entire room in the newest animated characters. Remember also that you'll be spending time in there with them. If the thought of talking character faces staring at you from every corner of their room gives you the heebie jeebies, just imagine how it could make them feel! Bless their hearts!! I've been able to keep the overall style of my children's rooms the same for going on 8 or so years now. For example, my son's room is done in pretty typical "boy colors." Since he was a newborn, I've used a combination of woods and metals with vintage airplanes thrown in the mix as the basic style for his room. Other than changing his bedding a few times to fit the size of his bed and adding new storage or decor accents here and there, I've been able to keep it along those lines all this time. My girls' room is also pretty typical with soft pinks and whites. Their bedding has changed some and I've added a little more femininity with textures and patterns and dainty accents, but it's also been overall the same since my oldest was born. Buying good, quality pieces and staying away from too much of a "themed" room has really helped to keep them from scheming up an escape route of their own.

Soft pink and white tones are carried throughout their room and pulled all together here in the bedding. More feminine touches are brought in with ruffled curtains, antique glass drawer pulls and much more!

The silvery blue walls serve as a beautiful backdrop for the other blues, tans, whites and accents of red. The planes, metals and antique woods combined with the colors, designs and textures help create a classic, timeless boys room.

Escape Plan for Category C). Before actually giving you the entire plan for this escape, I'll redirect you to our first blog. In it I talk about where to start when decorating your home and how important it is to allow things to inspire you as well as taking a look at things with a new perspective. Doing that first will really help you to get going on the decor style and the type things that you'd like to fill your home with. This particular route is one step at a time until you're able to get a sense of the things you love. If you find yourself stuck or stranded at any point, we're always here to help!

Escape Plan for Category D). If this is you, there's really no need for a plan. As long as you love the home your in, it doesn't get much better than that!

So there you have it. I've shared with you, through personal experience, my escape plans for "Themed Room" prison. For me, it wasn't something I realized I was even trapped in until it hit me one day that I was stuck and needed a way out. My "prison break" didn't happen overnight and most likely won't for you. In fact, I will always continue to work on making my home a beautiful place to be, and I hope that desire and passion never changes. #hartlandhome #hartlandhomeblog #areyouathemer

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