Summer decorating ideas for the abode

As the summer weather nears, we open our windows to let in the sunshine. It is time to let the summer breeze inside by decorating to add a touch of summer to the abode.

There are a number of décor changes that can be made.

Painting your walls can begin an entire new look for your rooms.

Thoughts of the beach and ocean come with the warm weather. Bring a little of the seaside inside.

When thinking summer our mind drifts to the ocean, sky, and sand. These colors can very easily be brought in with paint.

Blue with white trim, or visa versa, reflects the ocean and sky.

Blue painted molding can calm a room like a summer breeze

Sea-foam green mirrors the ocean as well.

In the art of feng shui, black represents water

Instead of white molding, paint some trim black.

Black, white, grey, and sand are wonderful neutral colors

Looking to keep a neutral palette, then paint the walls in shades of sand like tan or sand dollar white with a white or black trim.

For a touch of fun add a stenciled design with a summer motif

A nautical chain wall stencil in a contrasting color will add beauty to any wall.

nautical chain wall stencil

Summer colors are great to bring into the decor by adding accessories

Accessorizing is the fun part of decorating.

  • Go out shopping for fun finds. Turn it into a real treasure hunt. Make a list of what you are searching for. Search garage sales and thrift shops for items that can be worked into the décor.
  • Old portholes can be cleaned up and used as frames or made into clocks
  • Ships bells make nice bookends and paper weights.
  • Mounted fish can be great over a fireplace for the summer.
  • Boat models look nice on a bookshelf.
  • Oars can be hung on the wall as well as old signage.
  • Old steamer chests look beautiful when restored and can be used as a coffee table.
  • Old compasses and small anchors look nice on a wall.
  • A ship wheel can be hung on the wall or used as a base for a glass table top.
  • Giant fishing lures can be used as wall hooks.
  • Nautical flags and old maps can be framed and hung on walls.
  • Add some pretty accent pillows in a seaside theme.
  • Hurricane candle holders filled with sand and shells as a base for the candles are easy to display.

Do-it-yourself projects can be fun and rewarding.

In this nice weather use the outdoors to make some of your own accessories.

  • Have your children and friends gather shells on the beach. Use hot glue to cover an old lamp base or frame with the shells.
  • Make a tassel with shells and cord to tie back curtains.
  • Display some pretty shells inside a matted frame with no glass.
  • Make a display of nautical knots in a frame (learn to tie your own from a how-to tutorial online or in a book)
  • Find an old small rowboat shell, stand it up on the back end and take out seats, then add shelves to make a bookcase. 
  • Cabinet knobs can be changed with interesting knobs mimicking shells, fish, etc. You can make your own pulls with a simple nautical knot.
  • A fishnet can be used to swag a window.
  • Make your own wall art by cutting out a fish shape from decorative craft paper, wallpaper, wrapping paper, or a pretty solid color paper. Place your cut out on a black or white paper stock, then matte and frame your creation. The bay men make cut-outs of their caught fish by tracing them on paper and then hanging them on the wall to show everyone their prized catches.
    The bay men track their prized catches by tracing the fish and mounting the tracings on the wall

For furnishings bring the outdoors inside


  • Wicker furniture in not just for the front porch.
  • Replace chair cushions or make a slipcover in a nautical stripe.
  • Shadow box coffee tables are great and can be changed with the seasons. These can be found at stores like IKEA or you can make your own out of an old piano bench by replacing the hinged top with a piece of glass.  Lay some sand and shells inside for a summer motif.

As a final touch enhance your décor with some understated ocean and beach scents, like coconut and citrus, that will bring the summer indoors. Turn up the island music and never be afraid to dance!

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