By Kathryn Weber
Painted cabinets are back in style, and if you want to give your kitchen a fresh dose of spring freshness, all it takes is a coat of paint in a soft celery hue
Many years ago, T.S. Eliot said that April is the cruelest month, but today it seems like March holds the sadistic spot on the calendar. With its alternating bursts of winter and spring, March leaves you anxious for the cold to depart permanently. And although there's nothing we can do about Mother Nature's stubborn grip on winter, we can freshen up our homes for the spring that will eventually arrive -- and help us feel better while we wait.
START IN THE LIVING ROOM
Banish all those dark-colored throws and pillows and add a bright spark of color. Feeling ambitious? Remove heavy drapes and replace them with light voile sheers that let in more light and brighten things up.
Replace candles on the fireplace mantle with vases of brightly-colored flowers or a fresh green plant. Don't forget to remove the fireplace screen, and if your fireplace is empty, add some accents like a stack of white aspen logs or a lush plant. Lighten up the seating area with a sisal rug that harkens to days at the beach. Cover dark ottomans with bright throws and replace dark lampshades with light-colored examples.
REFRESH THE BEDROOM
With the departure of winter, stash heavy blankets and down comforters back in the closet in favor of lighter spreads. Consider adding a splash of paint color behind the bed. With only one wall to cover, the job will be quick and easy, yet make a big impact. Pull heavy accessories off the nightstands and replace them with glass bowls filled with seashells, sea glass, or bright silk flowers.
To give your bedroom that springtime scent, add potpourri with a light fragrance to make the room smell fresh. Drop some light-colored throw pillows on the bed. Remove drapes in favor of a light-colored valance and patterned sheers to draw more light into the room. Next, take a tip from 4-star hotels and add a spring-inspired throw rug on each side of the bed.
A SPRINGTIME KITCHEN
Painted cabinets are back in style, and if you want to give your kitchen a dose of spring freshness, all it takes is a coat of paint in a soft celery hue. Nothing says spring like green! Remove as much as possible from the countertops -- and the refrigerator door, a notorious clutter magnet. A neat kitchen looks cleaner and brighter.
To complete the makeover, add one or two bright-colored accessories, such as a vase or covered cake plate filled with decorated cookies in springtime shapes of leaves, rabbits or flowers. Hang some pretty botanical plates on the wall bring the outdoors in. Be sure to add some springtime freshness to your table, too, with napkins and placemats in spring colors, or that feature leaves or plants. Hang some pretty new dishtowels and you're all set.
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