17 Ways to Brighten Up Your Home Decor for Summer

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Longer days, warm weather, swimming pools, and ice cream cones — there are lots of reasons to look forward to summer. Decorating for the season can be a great way to welcome it in and can even help support a practice of gratitude. It is also quite practical, as in swapping out warmer bedding layers for cooler ones, for example.


If this sounds overwhelming, rest assured that we're not talking about massive changes. Small accents and adjustments are all you need for a little summer refresh. "Updating your interior home decor for the summer season is a great way to refresh your living space and create a more relaxed and inviting atmosphere," says Newport Beach-based designer Laura Brophy. "By incorporating light fabrics, bright colors, natural textures, and botanical accents, you can capture the energy of the season and enjoy your home to the fullest."

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We love these summer decorating ideas and have plenty more where that came from. Read on for some of our favorite ways to welcome the season into your home.

17 Summer Home Decor Ideas

1. Bring in bright colors.

Bright colors are synonymous with summer. One easy way to dabble in seasonal decorating is to tweak your color scheme every few months — and in the case of summer, incorporate more brights. In this room by Blackband Design, the main furnishings are all in neutral tones — white, black, and brown — allowing for near-endless accent color possibilities. When temperatures cool, the bright rug and throw pillows could easily be swapped out for textiles in warm, rusty tones.


2. Highlight fresh flowers or greenery.

Fresh flowers will always evoke easy summer style. Even plants without blooms can add a lively touch to your home decor. The leafy arrangement in this kitchen beautifully catches the natural light, making the whole room glow. Try peonies for a delicate, feminine look or for more of a coastal grandmother vibe, opt for a vase full of hydrangeas.


3. Go preppy.

This preppy color combo of Kelly green and cool white is as fresh as a summer morning. Equally fresh is Martha O'Hara Interiors' playful incorporation of brightly hued Windsor chairs in an otherwise fairly traditional dining room. For an easy take on this summer home decor idea, consider adding a pop of color with an accent chair or garden stool side table.



4. Embrace "summer hygge."

Love Scandi design and decor? Try embracing "summer hygge," as demonstrated in the bedroom above. Similar regular hygge, which is typically associated with winter, this approach also emphasizes the cozy but with adjustments for the warm weather. Think layered textures, lightweight textiles, and a soothing palette with pops of fresh color, like the green shown here.


5. Add a tropical print.

Tropical motifs feel like portals to a sunny island. Plus, they're just so chic. The banana leaf pattern is most iconic when used as wallpaper, but it looks just as great on a throw pillow in this room by Tony Puerzer. To use a similar print for your own seasonal update, you might try it on some accent pillows or chair cushions.


6. Swap out your lamp shades.

Light fixtures are a perfect place to do a little refresh, and how better than with a sunny yellow lamp shade like this one? Paired with a crisp white base by designers Ivy + Piper, it really evokes the warmth and joy of summertime. Plus, it serves as a perfect solid counterbalance to all the busy patterns in this sun-kissed nook.



There's no end to the ways you can personalize a gallery wall, so why not change it up from season to season? Pure Salt Interiors really thinks outside the box with this one, including not just coastal artwork but also a framed, vintage-looking bathing suit. You can stick to 2D pieces or create a surprising arrangement of your own inside a shadowbox.


8. Layer shades of white.

Soothing, breezy, and effortless, this bedroom is just so summer. Part of its relaxed appeal is the spareness of the decor choices, but it's also all the white and cream. Even if your style is more colorful, adding some light neutral touches will make it feel brighter and cooler. Simply changing out your curtains for some flowy sheers will go a long way toward making it feel like a summer retreat.


9. Freshen up your tablecloth.

We can't stop ogling the perfectly styled table in this kitchen by Susan Walsh Interiors. It's a testament to what an impact one simple textile, like this pretty boho tablecloth, can have on a space. The rattan chairs, the casual tablescape ... they all add up to the sort of beautiful ease we want in our lives come the summer months.


10. Decorate with driftwood.

Whether you own a beach house or just wish you did, driftwood immediately evokes the rugged beauty of the coast. The natural element is inherently sculptural, as evidenced by this showstopper of a side table styled by Laura Brophy Interiors. It also looks beautiful as an art object or on a coffee table or mantel.

11. Update a window treatment.

Little changes can breathe new life into a room, and window treatments are one of the easiest ways to make a big impact. If you have heavier curtains, switch them out for something more sheer or with a summery pattern, like this sweet floral shade chosen by Shophouse Design. If you love a DIY project, find a fabric you love and sew your own.

12. Lighten up your linens.

As warmer nights approach, swapping out your bedding for lighter options just makes sense. If you live in a colder climate, you may be doing this already out of necessity. But even if you live in a place with a more temperate climate, changing your linens with the seasons can be a nice mood boost. The bedding above evokes a warm desert dreamscape we would happily stay in all day.


13. Arrange a summer mantel.

Seasonal decorating doesn't have to be costly or complicated. This fetching fireplace mantel styled by blogger Lucy Akins of Craftberry Bush is a great example. To update it for summer, Akins pulled together some of her own decor pieces and then headed outside for fresh clippings and to the thrift store for those pretty brass candlesticks. The result is composed, chic, and surprisingly inexpensive.

14. Make a statement with monstera fronds.

There's no question that greenery and flowers enliven a space. Come summer, a tropical cutting of monstera or palm leaves feels fresh and fun. Designer Michele Gratch demonstrates their appeal in this pretty tablescape. Paired with accents in brown, white, blue, and complementary coral, the green fronds are a sculptural star.

15. Show off your surfboard.

Summer and coastal decor are a natural pairing. If you prefer to dip your toe into the style rather than go all in, this living room by Brooke Wagner Design may serve as good inspiration. With its linen fabrics and white wood-paneled ceiling, it's giving beach house vibes but not in the traditional blue and white color palette. The hot orange surfboard is yet another coastal nod in an unexpected color.

16. Bring in a summery rug.

As room changes go, an area rug update is one that's both easy and impactful. In this entryway by D2 Interieurs, the blue and white rug helps set a modern, coastal tone to the space while also complementing the hot pink palm frond wall art on the fireplace behind it. The color play has a beachy feel that's perfect for the warm weather months.

17. Incorporate natural materials.

Raffia, rattan, and other dried grasses bring a warm and relaxed feeling to a space as the summer weather sets in. The airy textures of the chairs and light fixtures in this room by Rita Chan Interiors are particularly inviting. Whether through a rattan coffee table or a jute rug, adding some natural materials to your space is a sure way to create summer staycation vibes.



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