I had several projects going over the weekend. In the living room, I decorated the fireplace with iron sea birds and a tray of seashells. I do this every year – I store the birds and seashells in a closet over the winter, when the fireplace is in use. During summer, they hide the unused fireplace and add a touch of the beach to my living space. Next, I washed and folded all of my heavy winter throws and put them in the storage ottoman and replaced them with thin cotton throws in white and pale blue. Then I tackled the bedrooms, replacing heavy comforters with lightweight summer spreads.
Now is a great time to bring a little summer into your space. Change out your throw pillows, decorate with seashells, pick up your throw rugs and make your space feel cool and breezy. You may even consider changing out your drapery – a thin cotton curtain in a light color can replace a heavier fabric. If you don’t have air conditioning in your apartment, this can be more than aesthetic – a lighter fabric can let the breeze through. If you can sew (even just a little), make throw pillows using outdoor fabric. Outdoor fabrics are not only pretty and seasonal, but they are waterproof and stain-resistant – perfect if you plan on throwing summer parties.
Put flowers in unusual containers – such as a clear glass pitcher or an old-fashioned watering can – and use them as centerpieces. If you have a sunny window in the kitchen, fill some clay pots with basil, thyme, and mint. You can make great summer dishes with these herbs and they will scent your apartment in a soothing seasonal fragrance.
I like to de-clutter my rooms while switching from winter décor to summer, as well. Over the weekend, I carried a large garbage bag around from room to room and scrutinized every knickknack to decide if it was worthy of storing for another season. When decorating for summer, think light, airy, and spacious – this will help you eliminate the clutter.
If you have a patio or balcony, add some hanging baskets or plant a container garden. If you don’t have a comfy outdoor chair there, get one! You don’t have to spend a lot – find one at a garage or rummage sale. If it needs a little sprucing up, you can always paint it. Making a cozy little getaway on your patio or balcony will give you a quiet place to relax and enjoy the cooler summer evenings.
Cool your apartment by using strategically-placed fans and lowering the wattage on your light bulbs. You’ll have plenty of fresh, natural sunlight and dimmer bulbs are cooler. Also, add a water feature to your apartment – a tabletop fountain is a great addition to a corner, and the sound will transport you to a cool, mountain brook.
Spring will be giving way to summer before too long, so take a little time to greet summer with some color and splash of your own.