Summer home decor ideas – 13 cheery updates to lift your mood

Get your summer fix all year round by brightening up your home with these stunning summer home decor ideas that ooze warmth and cheer.

Looking to dress your home with some staycation style? These summer home decor ideas will brighten the look of your home for warm-weather months and holiday vibes for the summer season and beyond.

From bold colours to vibrant prints, a few easy updates can make your home feel as relaxed as the seaside retreat or the cottage hideaway you're dreaming of.

Fresh white walls are the epitome of summer style and will allow you to experiment with different colours and themes against a works-with-everything backdrop. Don't just take our word for it... have a look at our white living room ideas for inspiration.

Plus, creating a bright home connected with the seasons and environment has been known to uplift and create a sense of wellbeing.

Victoria Harrison, homes and garden journalist and author of Happy by Design explains, 'Summer is the season where boundaries between inside and out really start to merge. It’s the season to fling doors wide open, welcome warm breezes and draw in as much warm sunlight as possible.'

'Being connected to nature has been proven to boost mood, so summer is the perfect time to bring the outside in and to decorate with natural finds. Seasonal flowers, herbs and wild treasures will all help to bring the spirit of summer into your home and remind you of warm days spent outdoors.'

So without further ado, here's our roundup of summer decorating ideas to give your home a bright and sunny look that'll lift your mood in the process.

Summer home decor ideas

1. Keep your space light and airy

Neutral colored bedroom with white linen bed, green plants and woven accessories

(Image credit: The White Company)

Santorini Linen Bed Linen From £20; Miles Bedspread Collection From £110; Faro Woven Bench £275

Open plan living room ideas create a flow to a room and also provides more light, creating a airy, breezy feeling that you get from luxurious hotel suite.

Light is one of the 7 WELL Certification standards used in interior design, a framework designed to measure features of an environment and their impact on human health and wellbeing.

2. Hang billowy curtains

Peach colored living room with white curtains, pink couch and colorful décor

(Image credit: Future PLC/Dominic Blackmore)

A simple way to transform a cosy winter den into a summery sanctuary is to replace heavy fabrics, such as curtains. Window coverings can play a big part in this as they have the ability to interact with the very thing they are designed to control: light.

Jason Peterkin, director at 247 Blinds says: 'We often underestimate how much of a difference natural lighting can make in our homes.'

'Whether your home benefits from large, airy windows or not, the right window treatment can help you open up your home and make the most out of natural light. It’s also important to note how versatile window treatments are, you can be flexible with materials and light exposure.'

Allow soft, dreamy light to flow into a room through layers of linen. Voiles will let sunlight stream through your windows into your room, or, if you’d prefer more privacy at night, choose a roller blind that won’t block out any natural light when it’s rolled up during the day.

To give the look a modern edge, choose one panel, such as this Roman blind, in a bold, contemporary print.

3. Add rattan

White dining room with a black dining table, hanging lights and a black fire place

(Image credit: Future PLC/Colin Poole)

Using a muted palette of stone and pebble grey alongside natural textures that are reminiscent of the coast will instantly make a living room feel summer-ready.

Distressed wooden furniture, wicker armchairs, rattan baskets and seagrass accessories will all add that chilled-out seaside vibe.

4. Accessorise with rustic boho decor

Blue wall with rustic accessories, green plants and colorful pillows

(Image credit: La Redoute)

Inspired by Moroccan boho style Kasbahs, set up a lush, cool hideaway replete with lots of soft furnishings like fringe and tassel trimmed cushions, plenty of rattan furniture and plants.

Woven furniture and accessories have a timeless appeal and are great for creating a relaxed, lived-in feel.

Casual in its construction, this look will work equally well in a modern or country setting. Adding colourful accents will prevent the overall look from appearing washed out. Instil a playful, fun feel in your scheme by including pattern and texture underfoot.

5. Decorate with yellow shades

Yellow table against a circle yellow colored painted wall with flowers in vases

(Image credit: Dulux)

New research carried out by Professor Peter Whorwell and Dr Helen Carruthers, revealed that the happiest colour is yellow, and the unhappiest is grey... That doesn't mean you won't feel happy by mixing the two colours with these grey and yellow living room ideas.

Homes and garden journalist and author of Happy by Design, Victoria Harrison, explains, 'The happiest colour brings to mind images of sunshine and warmth... There is a yellow out there for everyone and the tone you choose can have a huge impact on the mood you subsequently create.'

There are lots of subtle ways to introduce yellow into your scheme like creating a feature wall, adding yellow curtains, accenting a scheme with yellow furniture, simply scattering yellow hued textiles like cushions and hanging artwork with sunny yellows as part of the picture.

6. Swap your bed sheets for linen

Neutral colored bedding with a newspaper and a plate with slices of bread

(Image credit: Loaf)

Breathable like a second skin, linen helps regulate temperature, so it’s no wonder the material makes for the ideal summer wardrobe.

Linen gets softer over time and doesn’t retain moisture so you’ll be cool in the summer and warm in winter. Not to mention the fact that it also has a lovely laid-back vibe and is seriously easy to look after.

7. Decorate with floral motifs

White living room with a circle shaped marble coffee table, modern décor and green plants

(Image credit: Future PLC/Douglas Gibb)

Energizing colours, a mix of patterns, flowers and plants—real, painted, and printed—makes this grey living room idea packed full of summer inspiration.

Pattern is a great way to revive a living room for the summer months. Try swapping your cushion covers or rugs for floral, striped or geometric designs to bring more life into your scheme.

8. Pops of colour

White room with colorful picture frames on a rack and a black top desk with a yellow chair

(Image credit: IKEA)

Adding a dash of colour to a room is probably one of the easiest summer home decor ideas.

Michelle Kear, Web Merchandiser for Homes at La Redoute, says: ‘An injection of colour is an instant way to create a joyful, bright home, perfect for the summer months, whatever the weather may bring.

‘From beautifully plush velvet upholstery to bright metallic accessories, don’t be afraid to mix and match shades and textures when styling your home.

‘Opting for warmer and happier tones like yellows and pinks will help lift the mood, while greens and blues can help you feel calm and connected to nature.’

Tash Bradley, colour expert at Lick Home adds, 'Green is the colour topping Lick's colour charts at the moment. Customers are looking for the cocooning, soothing effect of this shade - just when we all need it most in our lives.'

'The earthiness of this shade brings the outside in, distracting us from our phones and devices in the process and helping us reconnect. In fact, we are seeing a particular interest in pairing greens with soft, dusky pinks. It's a clever combination that flatters any space, and introduces a subtle 'grown-up' playfulness.'

9. Tropical decor

Tropical décor bathroom wall with a white sink, a mirror and a plant

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Transport yourself to tropical climes and lush canopies, by adding a bold statement in the form of vibrant tropical decor.

Take inspiration from this little cloak room featuring bright flamingo wallpaper with botanical foliage. Or why not go all out and opt for a tropical style feature wall idea?

10. Striped furniture and accessories

Black and white stiped couch with plants on a staircase and rustic accessories

(Image credit: Buchanan Studio)

Why not opt for a more nautical summer style by opting for lots of modern stripes like in this plush, retro design, inspired by 1970s eclecticism and the free-flowing imaginative designs of the decade, by Buchanan Studio.

Make sure not to go overboard (pardon the pun) and keep the nautical nods to a minimum, by keeping schemes neutral with an eclectic mix of accessories. You could

11. Change your soft furnishings

Rustic kitchen with wooden counter top, a green lamp and plants

(Image credit: Pooky)

Brighten up a moody kitchen and dark cabinetry with a colourful lampshade, easy-going houseplants and put your most vibrant veg on display, for bright hints of summer.

Switching out heavy fabrics, faux furs and cosy knits for lighter linens and breathable cotton blends will instantly add a touch of island life in your home. Drape the lightweight throw over a cocktail chair or outdoor furniture to take the chill off cool summer evenings.

If you have opulent velvet cushions, swap these for lightweight scatter cushions with textured finishes and tassels as a finishing touch.

12. Introduce summery scents

White circled coffee table topped with a orange-yellow diffuser, a pink vase and books

(Image credit: Amazon)

If you're missing the beach, summer-inspired home fragrances are the perfect answer. Opt for fresh and light scents, with rustic wooden reeds reminiscent of beach house decor, or opt for a fresh hue like O by Olfacto's Mykonos scent.

Co-founder of the new luxury home fragrance brand O By Olfacto, Katy Worthy adds 'Evoke a sensory summer experience with the beautiful Mykonos fragrance. Bringing golden sand and ocean breeze vibes, the beautiful blend of citrus, amber and aquatic notes has the ability to transform the home into an idyllic island setting.'

If you prefer citrus fragrances, Nivea Sun candle smells like a sunny lemon grove, carrying fresh notes on a gentle breeze. Close your eyes and take a deep breath to transport yourself somewhere warmer.

13. Picture sunny scenes

White room with colorful wall paintings and modern décor

(Image credit: Fy)

Are you looking at a bare wall in your office all day? Look to artwork to inject summer-inspired pieces to look at. If you’re missing sun, sea and sand right now, opt for dreamy drawing or painting of a beautiful beach scene at sunset or a lush, tropical poolside.

If photographic wall art is more to your taste, opt for photography of places you've loved or places you'd love to go to, transporting you straight to the scene, sunglasses on and cocktail in hand. Not only will these gallery wall ideas help cheer you up on a dark, dank work day but it'll also give you inspiration for your next getaway.

How do I style my house for summer?

Summer is a great excuse to update your decor. Summer can take you inside and out, and that means you’ll have plenty of spaces to update.

The key to a summer makeover is light fabrics, bright colours and even a touch of beach-inspired decor.

You could add just a few accessories for quick updates like scatter cushions or artwork. Or go big and add brand new summery wallpaper or brand new linen style curtains. You could even keep the look all year round to keep those beachy dreams alive.

Even adding a houseplant or two can help style your home for summer. From mini Aeonium succulents to large sculptural Saguaro cactus there are many ways to make the most of the versatile and hardy plants. They will instantly turn a wintery scheme into a summer sanctuary – not to mention uplifting your mood.

Founder of  Leaf Envy, Beth Chapman explains, 'Adding plants can bring focus to certain parts of a room and will also purify the air around you too. Plant layering is a great way to bring texture, shape and pattern to your room.'

'Play with textures and sizes by mixing medium size plants such as the Calathea Orbifolia with large plants that have arching fronds like the Kentia palm. The Monstera Deliciosa is also a great plant to introduce to your home because of its stunning leaf shapes - it will look great paired with other plants.'

How can I decorate my living room in the summer?

Living rooms are made for relaxation, so update yours with a fresh new look that’s ideal for laid-back living during the summer months.

The beautiful blue skies and uplifting sunlight of summer can serve as inspiration to add bright colour to your home. Just one piece of furniture repainted or reupholstered in a vibrant shade could completely change the mood of your living room, giving it a more positive feel.

Keep flooring neutral; bare floorboards, engineered wood or a pale carpet will work with any living room scheme and leave you plenty of breathing room to add a colourful rug or upholstery.

Don’t be afraid to pick one colour and use it all over you room, especially if it is as fun and vibrant like a hot yellow. If you’re short on space, turning rooms into multi-functional areas is a great solution.

Jenny McFarlane
Senior Digital Editor

Jenny is Senior Digital Editor and joined the team in 2021, working across Ideal Home, Real Homes, Homes & Gardens, Livingetc and Gardeningetc. Since getting on the property ladder, her passion for interior design and gardening has taken on a new lease of life. She loves collecting and salvaging unique items (much to her other half's despair) but sniffing out stylish home bargains is her one true love. When she has a spare minute, she loves crafting, having studied textiles at university – although she hardly gets the chance with her daughters keeping her permanently on her toes.