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Today, lifestyle expert Kristan Cunningham and Stanley Steemer share cost-friendly tips to make your home fresh and clean in time for summer.
Spruce up your house with color.
Once you get all that spring cleaning done, you can really spruce up by giving your house some pop of color. 2012's color of the year is Tangerine and I can't think of a juicier, yummier hue to introduce into a space to celebrate the arrival of spring! The good news is, it pairs beautifully with charcoal gray, chocolate, navy and of course creams and whites... so whatever neutrals you've based your room's palette on, Tangerine can play nice. The better news is, because it's such a saturated color, a little dose'll do ya... you only need a pop here and there to effectively introduce some happy.
A bookcase lined with Tangerine paper can serve as a dramatic stage to curate a beautifully edited collection against, and the transformation only costs a few bucks. Remember, just because you own it all doesn't mean it all needs to be out at the same time. Scooping out the items that feel heavy and dark and stowing them away in boxes until winter will give your room a visual diet. Everything will feel lighter and airier and, come fall, you'll fall in love with your other pieces all over again as you make the switch.
But there are plenty of nooks and crannies in your home that can benefit from an injection of color... if you have glass fronted cabinets in your kitchen (and even if you don't!) consider painting or papering the backs of your upper cabinets, and then arrange stacks of white dishware- and even the silver that you normally keep stowed away- for an amazing kitchen facelift that literally costs nothing! Or, line the drawers of your dressing table- or even your bathroom drawers for a little dose of sunshine that's purely indulgent, since it's meant for you alone to see every day!
Decorate with natural elements.
This tip is great because not only does it incorporate our new favorite color, but it also uses live things to decorate: tangerines! Changing out fresh flowers every week can start to add up, but fruit lasts lifetimes longer. Anything you group in large quantities becomes impactful, so fill up your grocery cart and go crazy once you get them home. A large tureen full of them is pretty... three large tureens marching down the center if your dining table is a full on statement. A little dish here and there, in the powder room and on end tables, with just a few is a nice sprinkle of color.
And while we love this color, we're not limited too it! This same idea can be effective with so many fruits- and even vegetables! Lemons, eggplants, red peppers, pears.... the key is scale. The more you put out the better, and all of one kind is how you create that heavy dose of color.
An indoor herb garden is another way to bring some organic texture into your home and, of course, you get the benefit of fresh herbs to cook with- or, if you're a non-cook like me- garnish with. What a fancier pants way is there to welcome spring into your home than to trim your iced tea glass with fresh mint from your own window garden! They're inexpensive to invest in initially, and they're, literally, a gift to yourself that keeps on giving! Again, it's all about creating one cohesive visual statement, so whether it's white tea cups for a crisp classic look, mason jars for a rustic homespun look or tea tins for that injection of color and a more vintage/collected look, your kitchen windowsill will look like it got a new outfit... and that's really what ushering spring into our homes is all about. Even if it's still a little cold and gray outside, we can create our own visual happy places to view the world from, inside out.
Stanley Steemer is more than just carpets.
Stanley Steemer makes your home cleaner and healthier.
Regular self-cleanings, and call in the pros every 6 months (just like the dentist).
Find out more here.