Summer living is all about air, space and light. Just as you change clothes with the seasons, you can change your interiors to suit winter and summer living. It’s like having a summer wardrobe for your home.
If possible, rearrange furniture to allow for maximum light and views of the garden rather than have it grouped tightly around the fireplace.
Open the windows to let fresh air in. Clean them inside and out so they’re sparkling and let in every ray of sunshine.
Do the same with the house. Vacuum everywhere, clean skirting boards and the tops of cupboards where dust gathers.
Beat rugs to rid them of dirt accumulated during the winter months by hanging on the clothes line outside and thumping hard with a broom.
Get rid of clutter, storing or charity shopping anything that’s only relevant to the colder months.
Tidy your fireplace – leftover logs and coal can be stored in the shed, and put away coal scuttles and fire tools until you need them again. Clean the grate and the hearth, then add pretty lanterns and candles that can be lit on chillier summer evenings to liven up the dark space within.
Swap your scented candles for those with light, floral summer scents.
Read our tips for decluttering
Lighten and brighten
Walls looking dingy after all those log fires? A quick coat of paint in a lighter shade will help. Pick a make that covers in just one coat, like Crown’s Solo Matt emulsion.
Pack away heavy, knitted throws and chunky, textured cushions. Replace with pretty flowery fabrics in fresh, zesty hues like lime and lemon, or splashy watercolour prints.
Take down dark, thick curtains for dry cleaning and replace with light voile panels – they’ll stop people seeing in but will drift in the breeze and allow you to see out..
In the bedroom, replace dark duvet covers with crisp, ironed, white bedlinen and matching white cushions.
Treat yourself to new bathroom towels in bright beach-hut shades that remind you of hot days spent at the seaside.
Find out how to brighten up a dark room
Plants bring living energy to a room - the greenery will instantly lift your space. Put big ones in corners and group small ones on shelves.
Fresh flowers give the same feel and those with scent are an added bonus. Buy a bargain bunch at the supermarket, then add green foliage from your garden such as rosemary, hebe or lavender and long stems from climbers to trail down the vase.
Alternatively, posies of small flowers look great in simple jam jars repeated round the room, or sited next to place settings on a dinner table. Try honeysuckle paired with dog roses, alchemilla mollis and Shasta daisies.
Lighten up walls by replacing dark oil paintings with lighter prints. Nothing says summer like butterflies, which are very ‘on trend’ this season.
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