10 Tips for Decorating Your Home for Summer

Phyllis Décor 10 Comments

Summer in the south will be upon us in no time, and with the gorgeous weather comes the urge to entertain. Hospitality meets casual comfort during the summer, and nature provides us with an abundance of inspiration. I caught up with Southern Home Editor Lynn Lee Terry to provide a few tips for decorating your home for the season. 

1. Lighten up, and change out accessories like pillows and rugs. Replace the wool rugs with sisal or jute and add colorful linen pillows.

2. Entertain outside while the weather is nice. Set the table in bright linens and pick up a fresh bunch of flowers like zinnias or daisies for a fun, casual vibe.

3. Nothing says “summer” like fresh ferns, inside or out. For inside, I really like maiden hair ferns. Roosevelt ferns are great for screened porches because they don’t shed, and autumn ferns are perfect in the garden.

4. Summer is a visual feast with fruits and vegetables in full bloom. They can provide an instant color boost to any tabletop. Fresh cut lemons, limes, or cucumbers in a pitcher of cold water is both beautiful and refreshing. Additionally, lemons, limes, oranges, peaches, and even tomatoes, can make a bold centerpiece.

5. Change up candles with lighter colors and fragrances.

6. A large container filled with summer annuals sets the stage to welcome friends and family into your home.

7. In the summer, we often entertain guests. The perfect guest bedroom offers fresh linen bedding, fresh flowers, a decadent treat, fluffy towels, and, of course, a copy of Southern Home magazine.

8. Light paint colors provide an airy feeling to any room and they’re a perfect backdrop for almost any décor. The cover of the summer issue of Southern Home (design by Rivers Spencer), is a great example of how light and soothing a cool, calm palette with just a slight injection of color can be.

9. Blue and white porcelain is the perfect accessory and provides a jolt of color that is both sophisticated and timeless.

10. Hydrangeas and sunflowers are in their full glory during the summer. Take advantage of these beautiful flowers for instant impact. As an added bonus, hydrangeas last a long time, and can be dried to last all year!

Do you have any tips for summer decorating?

Comments 10

  1. Good tips!!
    Outside: We always try to freshen our white wrought iron garden furniture as soon as possible.
    Inside: We bring lots of (low maintenance) fresh greenery into our home — especially those plants with white blossoms or variegated white leaves — and place them either silver or white catch-pots.
    {Phyllis: I absolutely love the white & near white hydrangeas in the summer photo.}
    {Roma: Supposedly rosemary, thyme and other herbs planted near your outdoor spaces will reduce annoying insects! Hate to think how many more mosquitos we might have here in the country without our large clumps of rosemary!!}

  2. I usually change up the colours…lots of blues, yellows and pinks in the pillows, accessories, kitchen things. I open all the screened windows and doors to “let summer in.” I then start planting and decorating outside, weather permitting. Up here in Toronto, we are still, unfortunately, awaiting a true spring! I would love to entertain more outside but am constantly fighting the ants, mosquitoes and wasps. Does anyone have any helpful hints?

  3. I’m replacing my drapes with blush colored sheers, too. I’m doing my flower boxes so they show to advantages from the inside as well as the outside. My patio and rear courtyard garden are my summer living/dining room.

  4. I was so excited to read your column today because it confirms what I have done in our new and temporary residence. We recently downsized from a 4500 sq. ft house to an 1150 sq. ft apartment! The walls in the apartment are pale tan, so any color I chose would blend with the wall color. I wanted light and airy, so I accented the living room, dining room, kitchen and guest bath with various shades of green – light green, mint, celery, and pastel green. I had numerous accessory pieces in blues and decided to use those in the master bedroom. I found gorgeous floral pictures that matched the wall colors and our bed linens and cover perfectly. The blue theme carried through to the master bathroom. The second bathroom…is our office and is still a disaster! Outside, we have plot of about 8′ long and 3′ wide for planting flowers. I planted 3 Persian Shields on each end of the plot, 3 deep rose Star Gazer Lilies on each side next to the Persian Shields, in the center is a large planter of begonias in pinks, reds and whites, and interspersed throughout are Polka Dot Plants – some green with pink accents and some pink with green accents. Finally, in the two large planters, we planted petunias that are a lovely shade of purple. When we entertain, these flowers are the perfect backdrop!

    1. I’ve gotten GREAT ideas from your comment! Could you possibly email me a picture of your 8′ x 3′ outside garden? I may “copycat” part and/or all of your plants in a small area where I get a lot of sun! Thank you so much!!

      ps – If it is easier for your to send me a “friend request” on FB and then message me a picture, I’d be so appreciative!

  5. Wonderful tips from Lynn! I will add this: take some of your decorative accessories outside. Summer is perfect to spend lots of time on your porch, or in your back garden. Adding some French Country Antiques is my favorite way to add personality and interest {=fun!} to our outdoors spaces. Expressing your own individual style outdoors adds pleasure and fullness to your summer days.

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