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Oatmeal Decorating

by Nikki Willhite

I do, you do it, chances are, most of us do it. What is it? It is what I call "Oatmeal Decorating."

We are all just too safe. We make the same "safe" decorating choices for our homes, whether we like them or not.

Have you noticed on the decorating shows on HGTV how similar the rooms look when they are done staging them? Sure, they are pretty, but after awhile it is just plain BORING!

We are so afraid of what is going to happen if we have to sell our homes, and what other people think, that we have to follow the latest trends- especially when it comes to color.

My favorite color is kiwi green. Do I have any walls in my home painted that color. No. My green is as neutral as oatmeal.

Is anyone else tired of all the stainless steel and granite kitchens, with the glass tile or tumbled marble on the wall?  I know I am.

Where are the cute red ovens and the black and white checkerboard floors?

How I miss the days when homes had personality. We cringe when we see some of the wallpaper from years gone by, but you have to admit...... it had personality.

Just look at our cars. They have gone oatmeal too. Cars used to have color. They use to have design elements. Now they all look the same. 


As one who is very frugal in nature, I see the need to keep our material possessions marketable. However, I don't like it. The younger generation seems to think they have to redecorate every 10 years, so why can't I have what appeals to me, and they can just swap it out?

Give me a shiny red stove with a warming oven, a black and white checkered floor, and a  cozy eating booth in my kitchen and I'll put on my apron and skates, turn on the music, and have some major fun in my kitchen.

I'd say I miss the "old days", but even I'm not that old.   However, from what I've seen, when it comes to decorating, it looks like they had a lot more fun!

About the Author: Nikki Willhite, mother of 3 and an interior design graduate, has been writing and publishing articles on the topic of frugal living for over a decade. Visit her at - where you will find hundreds of frugal living tips and articles. Frugal Happy Families- more than just money!



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