It's that time of the year when the breeze is getting warmer, days longer, and the flowers on the mango trees are in full bloom. Yes, it is summer and what better way to welcome the season than with making your home 'summer ready'. The mercury levels are all set to soar and one would want to stay indoors and relax in a refreshing space. So, here are a few ideas to make your home a calm and cool place.
Keep it light
Summers are the best excuse to declutter. Going minimal and leaving your house airy and open is the best way to channel ventilation and retain the freshness amidst the heat and humidity. "Start your spring cleaning and take out all the clutter and make your space very light and easy on the eye," says Karishma Sheth, interior designer, Ayushi Kanodia Designs.
Apart from adopting an understated look for your home, it is best to avoid dark and metallic colours that absorb heat and are heavy. Choose colours like beige, white and pastel shades that will help keep the house breezy and cool. "The Scandi trend is set to be just as big in 2018 summer. Use whites predominantly with touches of grey, or pastels as Scandi decor is all about the limited palette," says Piyush Bhandari, co-founder, JumpingGoose.
"Don't go for orange, red, and shades of that family, as it is mostly seen to disseminate heat," adds Vaibhav Jain, CEO, Deco Window. Mediterranean blues and refreshing yellows are some great choices too as they add a cosy vibe to the house.
Summer is when one replaces those heavy rugs and thick curtains with fabrics and furnishings that have a cooling effect. Use materials like soft cotton, linens and jute that are natural and help keep the heat away. Avoid upholstery in heavy silks and leather as this tends to make the interiors stuffy and is certainly uncomfortable on the skin during high temperatures.
"Cotton, wood, rattan and wicker are great materials to start integrating into your space. Reminiscent of Goan huts and beach abodes, rattan is the ultimate summer material. Consider trying out latest trends - a rattan lampshade or maybe a wicker pendant light," says Ashish Dhingra from MarksDzyn. Flowy fabrics add a cheerful vibe to the room and add a sense of space. Also, small prints, floral patterns and even geometric designs go a long way in giving the space a pleasant yet lively look.
The importance of having plants, especially during the summer, can hardly be overemphasised. Apart from outdoor greens, having indoor plants adds to the freshness quotient and plays a great role in keeping temperatures under control. Money plant, peace lily, lucky bamboo shoots and climbers are a great idea to keep the room cool. Flowering plants like hibiscus, dahlia and lilacs flourish in summers. Having aromatic herbs like thyme and basil provide a much-needed detox effect to the house. "A valuable insight during such times is using hanging pots that are watered at regular intervals which acts as a cooling factor for nature as well as helps the birds," says Vaibhav.
If you don't have a green thumb, go in for succulents that need plenty of light and are low on maintenance. Place them in colourful planters on your kitchen window or the window sill of the living room to give your space a dash of life. Alternatively, you can use fresh flowers to keep you close to nature. Nothing is more refreshing than placing bunches of fresh roses, gerberas, gladioli and asters in vases in your bedroom, living room and kitchen. "Decorate your space with lots of plants and create refreshing green corners which will help you relax automatically. Exotic flower arrangements with oriental lilies, birds of paradise and the like add to the freshness," says Vaishnavipratima Kodakalla, interior designer and founder, Vaishnavipratima, The Interiors Studio.
Adding pops of colour to a muted palette can create the right sense of balance and light to any space. Accessories like cushion covers in bohemian or even animal print can bring in the right amount of exuberance. Colourful vases, planters and quirky wall plates, go a long way in creating contrasts that are peppy but not really intrusive or heavy.
Terracotta accessories like floating bowls, windchimes and candle holders add a rustic look to the house. "Add fragrance in the rooms using floating scented candles and fresh flowers. This will not only enhance the beauty of the rooms but also keep you energetic during the long and sultry summer days. Water is a natural heat absorbent and will help in keeping the home cool," says Dipti Das, head of design, HomeLane.com
Getting outdoor furniture in is yet another way to welcome the summer home. "Acapulco chairs are on our list of summer must-haves. Originally intended for outdoor use, these resort-style chairs go a long way in getting the summer vibe inside the house. In terms of accessories, hammered metal glasses are in. Use them to serve your summer drinks for they not only enhance your drinking experience by activating complex flavours, they help keep temperatures low as well," adds Ashish.
So, what are you waiting for? Get designing and welcome the season in style.