Updated February 11, 2021
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When Shannon Mason, a resident of Fort Sam Houston, recently moved, she set out to make her family’s new military space more than just the walls they would be living between. She wanted to make it their new home. At Lincoln Military Housing, we know decorating and bringing a sense of identity to your new military home can be a challenge, especially when you have so many things to worry about around the time of moving. To help you through this process, we teamed up with Shannon to share some of her easy tips and tricks for decorating your space and creating a home.
For many of us military spouses, it is important to make a home from whatever military house we receive. I know for me, one of the first things I do when my husband mentions a new Duty Station or receives orders is to research housing companies and communities on the Post we are headed for. There are instances when I have been pleasantly surprised at the photos and information I have found in my Google expedition, and then there are times where mortification paints my face. Yes, I could hunt down a nice rental in the surrounding area that fits my needs and most wants, but for my family, on-post housing is more practical. If you are in the same boat and live in an on-base housing (or even if you are in an off-post rental or apartment), you probably have thought about how to make the house your own and even how to make it your home.
Here are a few tips on how to decorate your military space without breaking the bank:
- Curtains!!! It is absolutely amazing how curtains can transform a house into a home. I put up curtains right away, and even with moving boxes surrounding me, I am instantly picturing how this new place will be home. Curtains are a great way to bring a room together and add color if you like it.
- Rugs pull living spaces together. This is especially helpful in designating different living spaces for those that have the living/dining-in-one feature in their home. They are a simple fix to add texture and warmth to your home and do not hurt to have during the cold months.
- Photos/picture frames are found in most households. It is the easiest way to personalize a space and surround yourself with your family’s memories. Trying a picture gallery is an easy way to add a feature wall and cover those sterile colored walls if opting not to paint.
- A wreath on the front door is inviting, and with so many styles, you are bound to find one that you love. Changing them out for the holidays or an individual theme is always a nice refresh, as well as adding elements of greetings or monograms to fit your liking. (If you find yourself not as crafty as you like, there are many easy DIY tutorials online for simple yet, beautiful wreaths. Another good resource for something a little more personalized and elaborate is to find a spouse on the base’s Facebook page who makes and sells them. They are usually cheaper to acquire than on an Etsy page or equivalent, and you avoid shipping costs and damage!)
- Décor can be anything that makes you happy and reflects your style. With Modern style to French country, eclectic to farmhouse leaving so many options available, there is something for everyone. You can even have a combo of the two or even fall at the other end of the spectrum with minimalism. Display your collections, keepsakes, souvenirs from each new adventure and fill your home with things you love, and you will hardly feel you are sitting down the road from artillery blasts or Blackhawks landing.
- Throw pillows just scream, “sit down, relax, and unwind.” They are a simple item that can be changed with seasons, changed by covering with a new pillow cover, and help you add a pop of color without a serious commitment. They can elevate your space and really bring a room together. You do not have to spend a fortune on pillows with a great selection offered at non-department type stores. If you have a knack for creating things, there are many things you can add or stencil to a plain pillow to get exactly what you want.
It is very important to have a home, a sanctuary for your family and you to put their feet up at the end of the day. Military life is ever-changing and chaotic, and it is nice to have a soft place to land when things get rough or when your spouse is deployed when you are in a completely new place and getting lost while trying to get established. Making a home is a process, a fun process!
-Shannon Mason, Fort Sam Houston Resident, and Guest Blogger
To share your tips on military family living and decorating, email us at LincolnMilitary@lpsi.com.