Monday, January 9, 2012

Seasonal Decorating for 2012

Bring the beauty of nature indoors to create simple but stunning living spaces – no matter what the season.


While many of us spend the warmer months trying to escape the home to enjoy fine weather, cooler days lure us indoors and the house becomes a sanctuary away from the cold and the dark. When the landscape outside is uniformly grey, banish the winter blahs with colour. Enliven the furniture with a few vibrant pillows in persimmon, orange or olive. Conjure warmth with a few matching wool throws or hang a coat tree with brightly patterned cardigans. Stack the rack beside the fire with scented pinecones or use fragrant candles to fill the rooms with warmth and cheer.


Spring is the sweetest season. As nature returns to life, bring the outside in by removing heavy drapes and replacing them with sheer curtains or scarves. Choose bright tints like chartreuse, fuchsia, periwinkle or lemon to accentuate light on lengthening days. Hang glass or mirrored sun catchers in the windows to distribute prisms of colour. Fill a clear vase with early bloomers like daffodils or bluebells. When entertaining, a bowl of new strawberries or cherries makes a charming and delicious centrepiece that summons the beauty and promise of the season.


During the sultry days of summer roll up the rugs and replace them with inexpensive and sturdy grass or bamboo mats. Use Roman shades to let in morning light and easily darken rooms during long, lazy afternoons. Dusky versions of primary colours like navy and ochre echo the sea and the sand of the shore and are restful on the eyes after long hours spent outdoors. Bring colour indoors with sprays of cut flowers from the garden or create a tropical feel with a few potted palms. Hang twinkle lights or paper lanterns on balconies or in windows. Replace heavy bed linens with sheer cotton sheets and quilts with lightweight knit throws.


The fall of the year brings a transition as the long days of summer slowly merge into winter. Mark this turning point by incorporating elements from both seasons. Combine a vase of late-blooming sunflowers with a basket filled with bright pumpkins, gourds or crisp and fragrant apples. Use gold or russet ribbons to tie back drapes and allow the last rays of summer to shine through. Gather a bouquet of seed pods, berries and autumn leaves for a stunning seasonal centrepiece.

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