Here is the good news about living in southeast Texas. Even though summer is normally almost gone in most of the country, those in the Houston area know that we have at least two full months of summer to go! That means if you still want to turn your house into a summer escape, there is plenty of time to do it.
Over the years, I have written extensively on how to prepare your house for summer, and this year is no different. The first thing I like to do is clean out my living spaces anything that says any other season besides summer. I’ve cultivated the process down to a science.
I start with the main living spaces. In my den, I have covers for my throw pillows that are a beautiful turquoise. I replace the heavy darker toned throw blankets on the sofa with a lighter material and sunnier color that helps brighten up the space. Finally, I switch out photos and accessories with cherished memories from summers past. I go room by room and every change I make helps brighten up the house so that it feels like a summer oasis wherever you go.
I not only change out accessories, but I also like to swap out artwork. This gives me another chance to bring that all important pop of color into each room of my home. I love the idea of refreshing the look of my interiors. If you would like help finding art that you love, contact us. We can certainly help. Galleries are packed with wonderful pieces and there are bargains available. If you are an art enthusiast, now is the time to let us start the search for those perfect pieces.
Bringing the outdoors inside is another way to embrace summer. Whether you are a first-time gardener or a seasoned pro, plants come in all shapes, sizes and heat resistance. I love freshly cut flowers, and summer brings out so many beautiful, different kinds. In “The 30 Best Flowers that Bloom in Summer for your Home Garden” from Country Living Magazine, we found some great options for your yard from Allium to Zinnia. I enjoy perusing the flower aisles at our local nursery and creating my own arrangements for around the house and in my backyard. It is such a great way to keep everything smelling fresh and reminds me of travels to tropical destinations.
Capitalizing on summer in your outdoor living spaces is what really makes the season special. A durable set of outdoor furniture with brightly colored, comfortable cushions will encourage you to get out and get some fresh air before the heat of the day sets in and when it begins to cool off in the evenings. Investing in quality pieces or refurbishing older, well made pieces is a great way to spruce up your outdoor living areas. Local antique shops have wonderful pieces that can be refurbished as well. As I mention in my blog, “Back Yard Updates that Extend Your Living Areas,” we recommend powder coating for pieces used in our climate to ensure they can withstand our harsh heat and rain for years to come.
Another great summertime activity that anyone can enjoy is working culinary magic from a well-appointed outdoor kitchen. We have created some amazing spaces for our clients over the years equipped with all the right appliances. An outdoor kitchen is a great investment and will provide enjoyment for years to come. Thinking through the space, how often you are going to use it and its proximity to your indoor kitchen are all important considerations.
If you are planning on doing a lot of outdoor cooking, then it makes sense to fully equip your space with an oven, grill, stove top, refrigerator, and if you really want to step it up, consider adding a pizza oven to the mix. Our “Outdoor Space Meant for Year-Round Use” blog post shares insight on outdoor kitchen appliances and often overlooked aspects such as making sure you have plenty of counterspace for prep work. Of course, don’t forget ample seating so your guests can watch in awe as you perfectly sear their steak, accompanied by honey balsamic-glazed brussels sprouts. Outdoor kitchens really do provide another outlet to get out of the house year-round, but they shine in the summer time.
Another way to lighten the mood and keep that summer sentiment is to ensure your outdoor living spaces have just the right lighting. I like to think of it as extending the sunset. The right outdoor lighting can do just that. Vintage Edison string lights are a great way to lighten up the yard. They can be found at almost any retailer from Amazon to Ballard Designs. Well placed lanterns will also do the trick for brightening up your spaces, especially in otherwise poorly lit corners. Pottery Barn has several styles that come with flameless, battery-powered candles or real candles for a more authentic atmosphere.
We hope this blog post inspires you to embrace the rest of the summer and even the fall. Our blog has years-worth of articles that are certain to spark your creativity and help you enjoy the tail end of summer.