Ready for summer? Is your house ready, too? Let's explore some easy changes that won't break the bank, yet will make your home feel like a summer cottage. Rosemary Sadez Friedmann, Scripps Howard News Service
Simply adding flowers and plants will get you off to a great start. But, for summer's sake, let's go a little further and change your decorations. First, you will need to remove some accessories to add new summer decor. Store the items you don't need in the closet or garage or, if you really need some extra space, put them in a storage facility.
Now that you have created empty space, how about filling a corner with a miniature, decorative indoor waterfall? The sound effect is wonderful, and the feel of summer will certainly fill the room.
On the cocktail table, bring on the look of summer by adding a tray filled with sand and seashells. You can make this an ongoing project by collecting interesting shells during beach visits throughout the summer. Or, if you are planning a vacation near a different beach, collect shells and bring them home for a summer decorating project. Keeping with your beach theme, purchase throw pillows for the couch that have a shell pattern or bold summer colors.
Did you store some area rugs when making room for the summer theme? Good, because you will want to leave the space clear. A clean, unencumbered look is perfect for summer. Alternatively, you can replace heavy wool rugs with lighter sisal rugs.
The dining table might look good with a new runner in a floral pattern or, if you're really liking the beach theme, a shell pattern. Flowers are always a welcome sight on any eating table. How about putting shells in a glass vase with water and fresh flowers? It's a great idea for a fresh summer look.
Place a pair of sheer drapery panels in the doorway between two rooms where the breeze can catch them. This summer decor will fill those rooms with the feel of summer warmth and whimsy.
Sometimes, a simple change of lampshades is enough to freshen up a room. A clean, white linen shade can do wonders for an old lamp and make any end table look rejuvenated.
In the kitchen, a glass bowl filled with lemons or limes is always a good decorating idea, for summer or any other season.
Now that your house is decorated for summer, all that's left to do is relax, have fun and enjoy the season.
Rosemary Sadez Friedmann, an interior designer in Naples is author of "Mystery of Color."