Spring has definitely arrived here in Sydney: Wysteria blossoms tumble over sandstone walls; the sky is burnished to a brilliant blue; the air is warm by mid morning…. And just as I’m throwing off the sweaters and scarves of a particularly cold winter, so a home wants to shake off its winter layers.
I love changing a house by season – it adds such spice to life! And it doesn’t have to be hard work.
One of the first things I do is to change the curtains in the living room. For winter I have heavy, glamorous, charcoal drapes, with a sheen that glows by lamp light, and weight that keeps out the evening chill. For summer, the windows are gauzy with floating muslin, that catches the breeze and softens the light.
I confess that this winter I was even going to make a winter coat for my sofa in a rich silk velvet – but that project just didn’t happen this year….
The room starts to feel lighter and airier.
The window looks simple and quite summery with its linen roman blind, but these large windows need softening, and acres of billowing froth is too lovely to resist. For curtains like this the secret lies in the quantity not the quality – this type off fabric is not expensive, so make sure there’s oodles of it! You can do this really cheaply with Ikea’s Lill curtain for only $5.99 a pair!
The rich velvet pillows and warm cashmere throws are replaced with linen cushions and fresh French toiles.
I even like to swap ornaments and books around – it’s all the fun of having a new home without any of the expense or stress of moving.
Moving darker items, wood and leather out, shells, coral and pale-bound books come to the fore.
Bring in sprays of blossom and new leaves and fill vases full of greenery. Plant pots of herbs along the kitchen windowsill.
Each change may only seem small, but together they will give a room a very different feel. You can even roll up rugs for summer (especially if you have an indoor/outdoor area) which has the added benefit of preserving them.
And if you’re reading this in the northern hemisphere, you can, of course, just reverse all of this. Fill your home with autumn fruits, rich colours and fabrics, layers of rugs and throws. Although I can’t bear to think of a northern winter in reality….