Design Tips, Tricks, And Helpful Hints
Spring – the season when days brighten, temperatures rise, flowers bloom, and our spirits lift. It’s also a time when homeowners are itching for a refresh of their living spaces – we all want the inside of our homes to reflect the beauty of the outdoors this season. But how do we do that, you ask? Well, some of our readers are wondering the same – and I’m here to help show how you can spruce up your spaces so you can embrace the sights and scents of spring.
Q: My house does not have much natural light. How do I brighten my space so it feels brighter and cheerier?
A: I get asked this question frequently – good lighting is the foundation to any space. Without the proper lighting, everything will feel dark. First, let’s take a look at your bulbs. Do you have fluorescent ones? I often call fluorescent light “depressing light.” If you do have fluorescent bulbs, I recommend switching them out to LED bulbs in 3000K temperature. These provide the perfect lighting for a living space – not too warm and not too cool – and are the closest to actual daylight. Be sure to pay attention to the wattage equivalent, so you do not go over the wattage limit for your particular fixture. Lamps are important as well. The height of the lamp should be tall enough so that the light disperses into the room and doesn’t aim directly onto the floor. And why not take this opportunity to further brighten up your space by introducing a new color – whether via a fun new lampshade, or the lamp itself? Even when turned off, a whimsical, colorful lamp or lampshade can add a splash of spring color to help brighten any room.
Q: What are the latest trends for spring?
A: This year, the latest trends can be summed up in three words: color, texture, and warmth. When it comes to color, there are no rules. Bold hues are hot this season – take bold even further by painting all the walls and the ceiling of a particular room the same color. Warm tones are more popular, but brighter colors can be toned down when paired with blacks and neutrals. If paint bores you, wallpaper is still on trend – anything from textured to big, bright patterns and florals. Paint the ceilings a complementary color or pick a complementary wallpaper to hang on the ceiling.
Bringing the outdoors in is a trend that has returned, just in time for spring. Incorporating greenery, moss, fresh flowers, twigs, etc. indoors adds warmth and texture to your space – and if you use fresh florals, lovely fragrances as well. If you don’t want to cut fresh flowers from your garden, faux flowers work just as well – just be sure to get ones that look authentic. Spend the extra money for realistic-looking blooms because you will be able to use them over and over again. Find places in each room to add beautiful flowers or foliage – for instance, place a large hydrangea bloom atop a tall candlestick on the mantel or several smaller vases filled with colorful blossoms on the coffee or side table. If you do not have a place to sit something, remember you can always hang it. Wall vases grouped together with just a sprig of different flowers provide a lovely decorating aesthetic. Bring the outdoors in with your table centerpiece – fill a non-traditional container such as a tiered fruit stand or wire basket with Easter eggs, flowers, greenery, etc. – just make it colorful, bright, and cheery.
Another way to take advantage of the color, texture, and warmth trends for the season is to swap out pillows with some new bright hues or subtle seasonal pastels, or perhaps large floral prints. Are your rugs getting a little worn out? If so, a new one could be just what the room needs. Introduce another color palette with the rug and change out a few accessories with new ones that highlight the rug’s colors – what a difference it will make. While Mother Nature is gracing us with warmer weather, there are still times when it’s nice to snuggle up with a lightweight, comfy blanket. Toss one in a vibrant shade or subtle pastel hue or funky bright pattern over your back porch rocking chair, or on the back of your living room sofa for instant color and texture.
This spring, experiment with color and texture, bring the outdoors in, and above all, brighten up your world and enjoy your home.