It's easy to create theme rooms

By Chris Casson Madden Published: September 1, 2000
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Although many in the design industry frown on "theme" rooms and stress the need for eclectic design, I have discovered, in my travels across America that choosing a thematic direction can be not only easier to work with but also inspirational.

Many women have told me that filling a room with furniture and accessories was easier if they first selected a theme. And that is understandable. A theme creates focus for a room and can make choosing wall coverings, furniture and accessories less of a chore.

Create stylish, theme rooms that can be a hit in your own home. By following a few simple steps and involving family members, almost anything can be used to establish a theme in a room.

A length of favorite Victorian fabric, the collection of seashells you've amassed from various vacations, your large assortment of framed family photographs, a grouping of antique toys, a set of favorite porcelain dishes and sports memorabilia -- all of these are good starting points to establish a theme in your home.

Once you've decided on a theme using, for example, the blue-and- white porcelain dishes that were given to you by your grandmother, you can begin establishing a blue-and-white color theme in your room.

Scour your home for an assortment of old and new blue-and- white objects -- decorative objects, dishes and serving pieces, books bound in blue leather, even empty bottles and jars -- and mass them to create a collection for a strong statement. You've started with a good jumping-off point -- a great color scheme and beautiful pieces for your room.

Now all that is needed is a little imagination.

Continue your color theme, if you wish, by adding a few blue- and-white patterned throw pillows on your sofa or chairs and perhaps adding an area rug, a throw or some fresh-looking lampshades in the same tones.

Wallpaper is a great help in creating a theme room, since there are so many choices available.

You might look for mismatched exportware (blue-and-white china patterns) at flea markets and tag sales and arrange them on one wall in your room.

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