What's New for Spring?
A few simple ideas can give your home a fresh look.
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By Shari Hiller
Home & Garden Television
This spring, consider brightening up a bedroom with a new coverlet, window toppers and accessories. Or, add lightweight cotton slipcovers to living-room furniture for a new, airy look. These are readily available through catalogs and in home stores.
Spring is also a good time to take down heavy over-drapes and have them dry-cleaned. For spring and summer, simple fabric toppers that you can make yourself look great over sheers or even blinds.
Don't forget about fresh flowers. After a long winter's nap, the aroma of fresh flowers brings spring indoors, even if Mother Nature isn't cooperating outdoors.
Also, a great way to brighten a room and give it a fresh look for spring is to completely _ or at least partially _ change out the accessories. I like to take out the heavy-looking copper pots, needlepoint pillows and richly colored artwork and replace them with clear-cut glass pieces, silk or cotton pillows, and bright prints. This process requires a bit of off-season storage, but the lift you get when you change the room will be well worth any hassle involved in getting items out of storage.
Spring also means pastels.
What could be wrong with painting your living room a spring-green color, or a very soft sky-blue? The slightly dusty pinks that sort of bridge the pink and peach families are lovely in a bedroom and bathroom, and creamy yellows will perk up any kitchen, laundry or hallway.
These fresh yet very livable hues seem very seasonal right now. However, I'm all for spring hues indoors no matter what colors Mother Nature is conjuring up outdoors.
A great place to look for seasonal color inspiration is the bedding department of a home store. Catalogs also showcase a variety of great beddings. This year, I see some absolutely lovely hand-painted looks in florals for bedding. The colors are in pinks and soft neutrals, and are paired with crisp white sheets.
Butterflies also seem to be a motif of choice. I've seen them printed on shower curtains and embroidered on silk pillows. They even show up on dinnerware.
Meanwhile, there are silk bedroom slippers with beautiful embroidery from India, and silk pillowcases with intricate designs from Japan. Many catalogs show Chinese chests adorned with chinoiserie, or simple nesting woven grass baskets from Africa.
There's a world of global influences out there, and the options are endless. If one of the pieces speaks to you, buy it. The mixing of styles is a fun decorating pastime, and you just may be very good at it.
Decorators have much to look forward to. It's just about time to change out the winter's rich and cozy hues for brighter, livelier tones, and maybe add a trendy accessory or two. Anything from delicately embroidered florals to the rough and wild textures of Africa will do.
But don't be ruled by trends. They're meant to encourage you to renew a look, not completely change the style of your home.
(Shari Hiller writes this column with Matt Fox. They also co-host the Home & Garden Television show Room By Room.)
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