109The time has come to “summer-ize” your home. There are so many ways to do this and you have your own ideas of what summer means. Expressing these summer needs means making easy and simple changes that will give comfort during the long, hot days of summer.

Here are some suggestions to choose from. Some of the following items may not make sense for you, while others may be just perfect.

  • Change heavy draperies to lighter ones with white or pastel colors. Light-weight fabrics such as gauze or linen create cool airy looks.
  • Place summer flowers throughout your home. Buy one bunch and separate the flowers into several different smaller vases. Even one flower in a vase makes a lovely statement.
  • Slipcover a sofa or chair in a neutral or soft pastel color as a summer accent, then, add solid color or patterned pillows to coordinate with the change.
  • Replace table linen with colors that can be mixed and matched together or use wicker and rattan placemats. Even paper napkins come in colors and patterns.
  • Find sheets in cool pastels to sleep on during the summer heat.
  • Add summer accents to your bookshelves with painted and natural rocks and seashells.
  • Add a piece of furniture painted in a summer color. You may already have one you would like better if it were another color.
  • Replace heavy fabrics, such as runners on tables, with lighter fabrics or remove them all together.
  • Buy potted plants that look like grass and line them up on your mantel.
  • Temporarily pack away some of your accessories like picture frames and knick-knacks to give a lighter, more open look and feel.
  • Switch out a heavy rug with a lighter sisal rug. It’s easy to roll up your winter one and store it in the garage.
  • Change your drape tablecloth with a lighter weight and color cloth. Or, drape a side table that has had no cloth.
  • Change your lampshades from dark to light and make sure you are using a 3-way bulb to adjust the amount of light you need at different times.
  • Change your furniture arrangement and if possible, face the seating arrangement towards the outdoors.
  • Select your summer reading, and place some of the books on a cocktail table and the others by your bedside.
  • Replace your winter afghans with lighter color or crocheted ones.
  • Replace your waste baskets with wicker ones. Place pretty airy looking baskets throughout your house – some filled with fruit in the kitchen or with hand towels in the powder room.
  • Replace the logs in your fireplace with candle holders and candles. Paint the inside of your fireplace white or a color for the summer months.
    Fill a large clear vase with lemons or other fresh fruit as an accent.
  • Change your room fragrance to something light, such as jasmine.

Enjoy the outdoors, whether it’s on your patio or by the pool. Serve breakfast, lunch or dinner outside, and don’t forget the candlelight in the evening.

Summer is a time to relax and kick back. Life becomes more casual and loose; let your home reflect that. Create your summer home to bring cool smiles for you and all who enter.