Tired of the usual summertime decor and looking for some design inspiration? While high-end magazines and Pinterest offer drool-worthy summer vacation home inspo, sometimes we need to cut corners and costs. Luckily, with a few clever ideas and techniques, you can achieve the same style looks for less. From igniting a few summer-scented candles to incorporating lighter textiles across your bed, here are eight affordable ways to style your home this summer.
#1 Ignite a Candle
If you can’t seem to get away for a vacation, ignite a candle instead. Smells can evoke memories more than any other senses, which is why candles make an excellent summertime decor. While it’s hard to capture your summer vacation in a bottle, it can be done! Make your home smell like a beachside bungalow, saltwater tides and driftwood with beach candles or add a flower candle that gives a small space the scent of a sprawling meadow of wildflowers as far as the eye can see. Plus, a candle can offer the warm flicking flame that calls to mind a camp bonfire.
#2 Add Found Flowers to a Vase
Speaking of scents, a bouquet of flowers adds a lovely fragrance to not only your home but also some greenery and color, too. Summer flowers and blooms make fabulous summertime decor. However, even if you can’t afford those fancy ship-to-home bouquets, you can still find ways to style your home for summer. Even if you grab a sprig or two from the park to place in a small vase placed on the kitchen table or coffee table, it can add a touch of vibrant color to a space. Keep in mind, though, not to go overboard. Leave the pollinating wildflowers for the bees and take just a bloom or two.
#3 Reveal the Bare Metals
Metals offer a lustrous sheen that’s perfect for summer. Reflecting the light around it, metals like coppers, silvers and golds in a furniture piece or lighting fixture can make a space look rustic or modern–whatever summertime decor you choose! Plus, when you reveal bare metals, it lends a utilitarian and minimal design look to your space, opening it up and making it feel airy.
#4 Upcycle Framed Photos with Colorful Prints
Chances are you already have a few framed pieces of artwork or photos on the walls. So instead of going out and purchasing a brand new piece that reflects the current color trends and style, why not reuse what you already own? Take your frames and add over the existing photos and illustrations something like a colorful print or inspiring piece of artwork. You don’t even have to look far for graphics. Peruse online places like Etsy for a more current pattern or illustration that lends a summer vibe, downloading and printing it that day. It’s super affordable and that easy!
#5 Hang String Lights
Don’t put those twinkling holiday decor lights away just yet! Beyond the winter season, your white Christmas lights can come in handy to illuminate a backyard patio or deck. Whenever you choose to dine al fresco on a balmy summer evening with friends or guests, those holiday lights can add a touch of ambiance. In summer, you won’t think of Christmas trees. Instead, they will call to mind fireplaces and twinkling stars.
Inexpensive and versatile, fairy lights can be used in a home throughout the year, too! But in summer, you can add them to Mason jars, hanging them in a few low-hanging branches of a tree or placing them on the front step of your home. You could even wrap them around your summer-scented candles. Many fairy lights come battery-operated or solar operated, too, allowing you to place them wherever you like.
#6 Bring Out the Lighter Textiles
Summer is no time for faux fur rugs, chunky wool knit throws and thick velvets. Instead, swap out these heavier textiles with lighter ones. But to keep it affordable, look for materials you already own instead of going out and buying new ones. Think linens, cottons, sheers and burlaps for a more airy summertime feel. Not only will these look airier in the home, but they also make your bed and rooms more breathable.
Even if you need to go out and buy a few lighter textiles, these fabrics are much more affordable than thicker ones and you can easily go the DIY route. Basic burlaps and muslins, which are even used as backing for upholstery projects, make excellent fabrics for a summery vibe. Use them to wrap pillows or drape across a headboard temporarily.
#7 Think Light and Bright Colors
It’s not just about lighter textiles. Summertime decor calls for light and bright colors, too. While it’s great to have saturated colors that add some pop here and there, lighter tones make a space feel more airy and open. Consider bright white hues as a foundation, layering it with daintier pastel tones, such as peach and mint green, to add depth and dimension. Painting a room in a bright white does just the trick and costs very little, as long as you paint it yourself.
#8 Go Boho
Bohemian isn’t just a decor style. It’s a way of life. But whether you consider yourself a true nomad or not, it does invoke a globetrotting, worldly aesthetic that is full of color and mismatched items. The perfect look for summer, a boho-style home can transport you to far-off destinations and make you feel like you’re on summer vacation.
The bohemian style is relatively easy to pull off, too. Incorporate boho-themed elements such as vibrant animal-print patterns and natural woods, paired with decor items such as lanterns, poofs and throw pillows for a Morrocan flair. Strike a balance between looking eclectic but not too cluttered, and you’re well on your way to a boho-styled home that offers a summer destination look.