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Got Spring Fever? Lighten up your Decor with Flair

Go lighter and brighter with fresh flowers, cotton rugs, whimsical throw pillows and airy window treatments.

Just about this time every year, I exchange my winter sweaters and heavy coats for lighter and brighter clothing. Your home should reflect the change of season as well. The general idea is to change and lighten your color palette through out your home. Many of these ideas are inexpensive and can be implemented easily:

• Begin with the floor by rolling up dark area rugs and replacing them with sisal or colorful cotton rugs or just enjoy the cool feeling of bare hardwood beneath your feet.

• Lighten up window treatments and upholstery. Let more natural sunlight in by exchanging heavy window treatments with sheers that billow in the breeze or use bamboo blinds for a more tropical feeling. Cover dark furniture with washable slipcovers in ticking stripes, colorful checks and floral patterns.

• Change your throw pillows to brighter colors or embellish your existing ones with colorful trim or ribbon for a fresh look. In the same way — switch dark lampshades with light-colored ones and embellish to coordinate with your pillows.

• Hanging artwork of warm weather scenes or floral motifs reflect the season rather than darker oil paintings.

• Add a splash of color by painting one focal wall in a room a beautiful color. Take inspiration from the outside by choosing a soothing green or a sunny yellow. Paint is one of the cheapest and easiest ways to decorate and change the feel of a room.

• Give your home a spacious feel by de-cluttering your rooms. Lighten up your accessories by replacing heavy pottery, brass or wood pieces with colored glass or floral patterns on china. Edit your collections and display only the items that you love and pack the others away.

• Substitute fresh scented candles for the heavier scents of winter such as cinnamon. Surround your candles with seashells or beach glass for a new twist.

• Rearrange your furniture to shift your view from the fireplace to focus on an outdoor view. The firebox can now be filled with a grouping of pillar candles, a large plant or a bundle of birch logs. Accessorize the mantle by bringing in elements from outdoors such as bird nests and birdhouses, watering cans, and small bird statutes.

• Another quick and inexpensive update is new towels in your kitchen and bathrooms as well as placemats. There are all kinds of patterns and colors to choose from.

• Fresh flowers and a bowl of lemons are inexpensive this time of year and add a punch of color as well as a wonderful scent.

• Add one piece of outdoor furniture to a room. A garden bench or a wicker chair helps make the transition from indoors to outdoors.

• Plant an indoor window box in lively colors with plants that thrive without direct sunlight.

• Hang a plate rack to showcase pretty china. It takes up less space than a hutch but has plenty of visual punch.

• Paint the inside of a corner cupboard or bookcase for a colorful backdrop to show off a collection.

I encourage you to take a cue from nature and embrace the change of seasons. Lighten up your home, add colorful accents and throw open the windows and enjoy the freshness of spring!

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