Spring is here, and just as every year you swap your heavy, dull winter clothes for freer, lighter attire when the days begin to warm and lengthen, you want to do the same for your house. Best of all, optimizing your house for spring doesn’t have to take a lot of money or time. You can do it all over the weekend, and a few inexpensive touches are all you need to purchase. Here are six quick and easy ways you can give your home a spring makeover without breaking the bank:
1) Laced with sheer beauty
Take down your heavy winter curtains and replace them with sheer curtains, valances and or panels that are embellished with Swiss polka dots, swirling ivy vines, bumblebees or stripes. These simple window treatments can slip onto your existing rods, or, for a real change, try a wrought iron rod with fanciful finials. The white, cream or ivory tones of the sheers will give a real lightening and brightening effect to a room once encumbered with the wintry warmth of heavier fabrics.
2) Add nature’s (Lemon) zest
Use all-natural ingredients to infuse your home with a fresh, organic feeling. Fruits, bright green artichokes, forced branches, and pebbles and stones are standard fare for any room where you want a touch of spring. Take two glass vases and fill with small, shiny river stones for a textured decorative treat. Or fill one with fresh, bright yellow lemons from your local grocer; pile up shiny green limes in the other. Use this fresh, natural decoration on your luncheon table, flanking your mantel or on a low, oversized coffee table and surround them with clean white candles.
3) The impact of hardware
Want to make a remarkably quick but effective upgrade? You’ll be amazed at how simply changing the knobs and drawer pulls on your kitchen or bath cabinets will make an instant, eye-popping difference. Do you have traditional cherry cabinetry? Unscrew the brass hardware and replace it with something in trendy brushed aluminum—perhaps old-fashioned “bread drawer” style pulls, or knobs shaped like beehives or twigs, or whimsical knives-and-spoons. For a light, fresh look, choose clear or lightly tinted, multi-faceted glass knobs shaped like flowers or sleek squares.
4) Wash your windows
Washing your windows inside and out can give you one of spring’s greatest gifts: the ability to look out and clearly see nature in all its glory. And it will allow bright, clean sunshine inside, giving your home added glow and enhancing the colors of walls, carpets and artwork inside. When you wipe down your windows, use old newspaper – yes, old newspaper – or even better, newspaper that isn’t yet printed, which you can find at packing stores. The texture and inherent qualities in the newsprint make for a streak-free finish. You’ll be amazed at the difference this simple cleanup will make in your home.
5) Flower power
It simply wouldn’t be spring without oodles of pots filled with blooming classics like gloxynia, hydrangeas, tulips and paperwhites. But instead of using a regular old terra cotta pot, use unusual containers for real drama. Line your kitchen windowsill with bright daffodils set in old, round yellow country bowls. For an elegant, traditional touch, set ivy topiaries in tall, painted tole urns.
6) Scissors, paper and glue
Bring new pattern and color into your room schemes by upgrading an old open-faced hutch or freestanding shelf with wallpaper or fabric applied to the visible shelf back. Select a lively stripe, busy floral, or old-world toile wallpaper and line the shelf backs with cut-to-size pieces. Or try your favorite fabric cut with pinking shears and applied with tacky spray glue. This simple project can add immense charm to an old piece of furniture and change its look completely, and it’s more economical than papering an entire room.