Decorating Resolutions for a Happy New Year!

Wrenda Goodwyn • special to the Fort Myers News-Press• January 7, 2012

If you are looking around your home and thinking that it is a little drab after taking down the holiday decorations, now may be a good time to think about what changes you would like to make for the coming year.  Some ways to give it a fresher look for 2012.

If you are like most of us, New Year's resolutions last about as long as the last holiday leftovers. But if you put a short plan together of some decorating resolutions, you may be surprised at the results!

Here are my top resolutions for 2012:


Try something new!  Something bold for the New Year.  “Undrab” your home following the holidays with Pantone's color for 2012.  Tangerine Tango has everyone dancing about this color.  Is it the new red?  Likely.  According to pantone, the deep red-orange color is intended to give us all a “big energy boost; a refresh and a recharge.” What better way to start the year.   But be careful how you use it! Suggestions:  Pillows, bedding, accent walls, upholster a chair.  Include it in your wardrobe…a purse, nail polish, shoes.  It is coming.  Get ready and have fun! That is what decorating is all about.

Undecorate. This may sound strange coming from a decorator so I will explain! Most homes are plagued with with visual overload. Let's resolve to simply our decorating and put some space in our homes instead of more things. Eliminate overstuffed rooms. This includes table tops, walls, furniture. Give your rooms space in which to breath. The result: a more restful and peaceful home.

Exercise restraint. Many times clients want help with selecting more accessories, furniture, artwork. Often what they really need is help with "less." A good rule to follow for 2012 is to buy less but buy smarter. Your home this coming year should not be about having more but about having what gives you comfort and allows for doing more than taking care of too much "stuff."


Refresh. Now that the decorations have been packed away, your home may be looking a little dull. Make one of your resolutions this year to paint at least one room. It can be an accent wall or the entire room. Maybe wallpaper that small half bath. A freshly painted room changes everything and will lift your spirits. Afraid of color? Use Benjamin Moore's Decorator White or Linen White and add color with accessories. Not ready to take on an entire room? Paint the baseboards and trim to freshen things up.

Shake it up. Keep your rooms fresh and bright. Many people decorate a home and just leave it the same for years! Rooms should be changed occasionally. Or as I like to say, "shake it up for a change." Try a new color in accessories, throw pillows, and walls. Switch out lampshades. Rearrange and rotate accessories and art.

Don't settle for just OK. Make this your decorating mantra for 2012: Buy only what you love. Not something that will do at the time or is just simply okay. It is like the clothes in your closet that you never wear. They are just okay and should have never been purchased. The 10 percent in your closet that you do wear are the ones that you love. It is the same for your home. If you don't feel passionate about it, don't buy it. And don't talk yourself into it if it is on sale. Love it or leave it!


Don't be an organized hoarder. Decorators see this all the time when homeowners have downsized from larger homes and are having a difficult time saying goodbye to their excess “stuff.” The rooms may look neat and tidy but there is just too much of everything. What to do? Go room by room and delete what you don't use. And what doesn’t fit. All of that excess stuff makes you tired. Not to mention that you will be donating what you can't use to someone who can use it. That makes you feel good.

Repurpose. Refinish, reupholster or paint something this year. Decorating your home with things that have already seen a long life – furniture, art, sculpture--man-made or from nature --- can bring a unique, one-of-a-kind charm that shopping for something new can never achieve.

Think green. If a kitchen appliance, flooring or even a car will be replaced this year, consider an environmentally responsible alternative. More decor is now being made "green." Do some research before making a purchase.

Lighten up. There is no time better than a new year to declutter.  If you only clean out your junk drawers today it will give you some control over your home. Take small steps and in a month your entire home will be lighter and happier. So will you.

Happy New Year and happy decorating in 2012!

Wrenda Goodwyn is a Southwest Florida interior decorator. Visit her website at Call her at 949-1808 or e-mail For more decorating tips and photos, visit