Interior decorating is a tricky task that challenges the creative juices of any individual. Many people opt to use family photos and standard items for sale at a local retailer to create a theme for each room in their home. There’s no rule that requires people to create a theme in any room, which is why you’ll often find rooms that lack decoration altogether or include only basic items. If you want to create a unique, but consistent, theme for one of the rooms in your home, allow your travels to inspire you.
Every good room design starts with the major features of the room. Does your family room or living room have a large wall that is challenging your creativity levels? A large wall map would be a great option for covering up that blank space. However, don’t settle for just hanging a standard map on the wall. Do something to make that map really contribute to the room, while also making a statement about you or your family.
One option is to use a large map and some tags to let everyone know where you’ve traveled in your life. This approach is simple, and it offers a subtle tool to brag about your travels without forcing the idea into conversations with your friends. Select a wall map that you like the look of (political, geographic, antique, etc.).
To finish off the project, hang tags on pinpoints that represent destinations you’ve visited. On the tags, you can write the date of your visit and the specific location (city, for example) that you visited while in that state, region, or country.
Tie the Room Together
Now that you have a large map on the wall, you’re going to have to integrate travel themes and/or maps into the rest of the room. You can start by making (or buying) some map coasters to put on the coffee and end tables. This provides a subtle, but easily visible, connection to the room’s theme. Additional options include end tables with maps on the tabletops (Mod Podge is a great way of doing this), and covering lampshades in maps to create a truly unique theme.
Connect Other Pieces
Finally, you can use a variety of other smaller pieces to connect to the theme without directly using maps to do so. For example, you can line the walls or tables with framed photos from some of your destinations. In addition to or as an alternative to photos, you can use literary items to connect the pieces of your theme into the map on your wall.
Leave travel magazines and guides on the coffee table. If your guests are interested, they can read about those places. At the very least, they’ll see that you have a creative theme running throughout the room. You can also stack travel books on your favorite destinations on your shelves.
Whatever you do to create a unique theme in your room, use a mixture of blatant and subtle approaches to tie all of the pieces together so you develop a consistent theme that your guests will notice and appreciate.