Wrenda Goodwyn • special to the Fort Myers News-Press• May 9, 2015
Even though in Southwest Florida, we typically go from winter (such as it is) straight into summer, with a few cool and breezy days in between, it is still human nature to mark the change of seasons.
And spring is a time to take a mid-year evaluation of how we want to transition into summer with subtle ways of renewing and refreshing our homes. And our spirit.
So, do a little inventory of you home and decide what makes you happy this spring. And make a list of a few easy changes you do to honor the season and refresh your home. Some of my favorite rituals to acknowledge this subtle shift may help!
Declutter. Spring is the perfect time as you refresh and renew your home. Eliminate anything that bothers you. A mini downsize of your "stuff" is healthy and don't be afraid to open up some space!
Open the windows. Yes, some fresh air. Let all of the bad chemicals and cooking fumes out and some fresh air in. My green expert friend and designer, Peggy Oberlin of Oberlin Interiors in Naples, uses the plastic bag analogy when explaining what our homes are like. We live in air conditioning without fresh air and everything builds up inside to one big unhealthy trapped batch of air. Open the windows and let it out!
Bring a little "green" inside. We know that plants are healthy for our environment but I notice in most of my client's homes, there are very few plants used as decor. This does make some sense since we are surrounded by beautiful outdoor landscapes and our lanais are all filled with trees and potted plants. But pick up a few for the inside. No green thumb? Try succulents. They live despite the fact that you don't have a green thumb.
Replace a few things. Like those yucky switch plates that have been around forever. Like the front door welcome mat. And definitely add or replace a few pots of annuals around your front door. They just shout out "welcome" spring.
Paint baseboards and window sills. One of my favorite spring rituals. This gets rid of scuff marks and gives your home a little sparkly clean feeling.
Now, let's add some bursts of color.
Paint the front door. This is my favorite low-cost change that will make a big impact and it will also make you happy when you walk in the door. But here is the big change: paint the inside of the door as well so you can see it from your entry. Trust me. This is a great one! My favorite front door color (both sides) of the moment is Benjamin Moore's Boca Raton Blue. But try a color that you love. The choices are endless.
Paint a ceiling blue. Yes. Blue. There's just something about a blue ceiling. My favorite locations: bedrooms, bathrooms and lanais. It's a very tropical, cool, calming thing that is also brings big impact for very little money. Try it. You will thank me.
Paint a piece of furniture. Add some color with an old table that you feel is brown and dull. A nightstand in the bedroom or a even fireplace mantel. Give it a new life. It will brighten up a room instantly and give it a little personality.
Add wallpaper. Okay. You don't have to go crazy with this one if you are afraid. But a powder room (my favorites) or your closet are great rooms to play with. These are rooms that you are not living in all day but will love some spring pizzazz! Be brave! And while at it, add a chandelier. Spring glam!
Rotate your artwork. As a Fort Myers interior, I do this for many of my clients. We all have artwork in the back of our closets because there is not enough space. Bring it all out and pick a few pieces to rotate for a season or two. It's like shopping in your own closet because you have probably forgotten about it!
To celebrate spring, there are a few purchases that will go a long way to welcoming a new season.
Pillows. If you don't add anything else, change the pillows on your sofa for a totally new look for spring. I like doing this frequently and it is perfect for a seasonal transition.
Set a pretty table. Think about an inexpensive, colorful set of dishes. Napkins, table cloth and centerpiece. There is not any better (and fun) way to bring spring into your home than a new table setting. You know you are bored with the same old tired looking stuff. Time to refresh it!
Create a spa in your bathroom. This would be a great time to give your bathroom a mini makeover. Transition it into spring with a spa look. White walls, blue ceiling, white fluffy towels, white rugs. Frame the mirror. Voila! A new bathroom.
Add fresh flowers to every room. This is my favorite. Because it will not only add color to a room but it just makes you feel food. Invest in a few new vases and be creative about what you purchase. My favorites: turquoise and green bottles. I like to buy large bouquets and break them into bunches of solid colors and arrange them throughout the house. And don't wait until house guests arrive. Do it for yourself.
Whatever changes you make to welcome spring, enjoy your home in this new season. There are only 32 weeks until Christmas!
Wrenda Goodwyn is a Southwest Florida interior decorator. Home Inspirations appears the first Saturday of each month. Visit her website at spectacularspaces.com. Call her at 949-1808 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. For more decorating tips and photos, visit spectacularspaces.com/blog
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