6 summer decor trends from interior designers – to help you update your home for the season in 2024

Breathe new life into your home this summer with these trends shared from interior designers

how to update your home for summer
(Image credit: James Farmer / Bethany Adams Interiors / Neptune)

As we start to usher in the lighter evenings and balmier days, it makes total sense to transition away from darker hues and heavy fabrics in search of some summer decor ideas. We're talking fresh decor, breezier fabrics, bringing the outdoors in – and of course, not forgetting the garden too.

While this sounds like we're encouraging a labor and cost-intensive overhaul, really all your home needs to invigorate it now that the warm weather has arrived are a few simple swaps. 6 to be exact.

Here, we share the latest summer decor trends interior designers are loving for 2024, and their recommended ways on how best to update your home for summer.

media wall unit with coastal style and large tv

(Image credit: Kathy Kuo)

From lightening up your color palette to incorporating nature-inspired elements, following the latest interior design trends can inspire you to refresh your home and make it summer-ready. So let's dive right in.

1. Statement summer pillows

pair of black bobbin chairs with blue throw pillows in a lounge diner with vintage touches

(Image credit: K. Kelly Interior Design / Photography Jacquelyn Warner)

'One of the easiest ways to refresh your home for summer is by swapping out heavier throw pillows with lighter, brighter ones in summer-inspired colors and patterns,' suggests Kati Kelly of K. Kelly Interior Design, who designed the space seen above.

By simply changing out your pillows (and throws for that matter), you can alter the entire mood and style of a space without a major overhaul. Take the lead from this year's summer color trends and opt for bright, cheerful colors in light and breezy textures such as sunny yellows, ocean blues, and lush greens. These will not only add a pop of color but also evoke the refreshing vibes of summer.

'The watery blues in these lumbar pillows add a fresh pop of color to the space and echo the colors of summer skies and splashing beach waves. Using lighter fabrics like linen and cotton will also add a soft, breezy feeling to a room,' she advises.

Interior designer Kathy Kuo agrees, saying: 'I always swap out my decorative pillows with the seasons – this year, I'm loving linen textiles and coastal decor motifs for summer.'

2. Embrace colorful paint ideas outdoors

garden space with painted red window and blue back door with bistro table and chairs

(Image credit: Farrow & Ball)

If your garden is looking a bit tired, there are several ways to breathe new life into it. Simple updates can transform the space into a vibrant, dynamic area. Remember, this year's paint trends are not just reserved for your indoor space, you can introduce a wonderful sense of character into your yard with a splash of paint.

'If you have a small or rather bland exterior space with some generic fencing, why not bring it to life with some pops of color and clever container planting? Dark colors always work well and act as a lovely backdrop to planting,' suggests Patrick O'Donnell, brand ambassador at Farrow & Ball.

'To bring in an element of fun for that summer drink al fresco this year, try also adding a splash of vibrant color to the seating area,' he advises. 'If you have a tired wooden bench, sand back to get a good key, then give it a coat of primer/undercoat followed by two coats of exterior eggshell in a sunshine color such as Dutch Orange. Sprinkle the space with fairy lights, pour yourself a Negroni, and enjoy!'

3. Seasonal vignettes

entryway side table with summer decor accessories

(Image credit: Neptune)

Vignettes – those curated groupings of decor items on tables, shelves, or mantels – offer a perfect opportunity to showcase some seasonal charm.

'I like to make changes to my styled vignettes,' adds Kathy Kuo. 'Add a summery scented candle, bring in fresh seasonal flowers for your decorative vases, and change up your glassware on your bar cart so that you're ready for summer cocktails.'

Start by clearing away any clutter and rethinking the items you have on display. Aim for a clean, airy look that incorporates natural materials and seasonal colors. Nature-inspired decor instantly brings a touch of the outdoors in so look to plants, seashells, and driftwood to enhance the tranquility of the space. Additionally, a few scented candles with fragrances like citrus, lavender, or ocean breeze will help to transport you to a more serene landscape – even if you're WFH.

4. Bring the outdoors in

blue painted bedroom with green bed linens and flowers in a vase on the nightstand

(Image credit: Bethany Adams Interiors)

We've mentioned it before, but there's nothing nicer than bringing fresh plants, greenery, and flowers into your home come spring and summer. While we all naturally want to be spending more time outdoors, that's not always possible, so bring the outdoors to you with some houseplants.

From large potted trees to small succulents, greenery adds a fresh, vibrant touch to any room. Not only do plants enhance the visual appeal, but they also improve indoor air quality, making your home healthier and more zen-like. And of course, there is nothing more lovely than a bunch of flowers in a vase.

'I say to bring in some fresh blooms and boughs if you are an apartment-dweller and start a windowsill herb garden,' suggests interior designer Bethany Adams. 'If you are lucky enough to have a bit of outdoor space, focus your attentions there and make the most of your bonus room by throwing down an indoor/outdoor rug, investing in some fun pillows, a cute side table, and spending your summer nights with friends, under the stars.'

5. Introduce natural materials

summer tablescape with florals and a rattan ceiling pendant light and check rug

(Image credit: Neptune)

Natural materials bring warmth and texture to a space, making it feel grounded and inviting. Start by evaluating the materials in your living areas and consider swapping synthetic or heavy elements for more organic options. Materials like wood, stone, bamboo, rattan, and linen not only look beautiful but also contribute to a healthier, more eco-friendly living environment.

'Incorporating light, airy designs, and natural materials is a simple way to introduce a breeze of summer air to your living space,' says Fred Horlock, design director at Neptune. 'Linen textiles and jute rugs are perfect for a cool, neutral interior. And wicker or rattan lighting will add subtle coastal references and creates a softly dappled light which makes a room feel atmospheric.'

Lastly, don't forget about the smaller details that can further enhance the summer theme. Using natural material accents like woven baskets, clay pots, and wooden picture frames can tie the whole look together.

6. Create an outdoor living room

outdoor living room patio with plants

(Image credit: James Farmer)

Revamping your outdoor living room is a fantastic way to extend your living space and make the most of the summer months.

Begin by assessing your outdoor furniture. If it looks worn out or outdated, consider investing in new pieces that are both durable and aesthetically pleasing. Opt for weather-resistant materials like teak, aluminum, or all-weather wicker that can withstand the elements while providing a sleek, modern look.

'Update your exterior space with outdoor furniture designed to comfortably bring family and friends together,' adds Neptune's Fred Horlock. 'Neptune's Kew outdoor collection is an elegant design made from durable solid teak, ideal for creating a stylish space for relaxed entertaining.'

Add some plush outdoor-friendly cushions and pillows in vibrant shades, and lay down an outdoor rug. Don't forget personal touches and some ambient lighting too to add a cozy element to your space, making it perfect for gatherings long into the night.

Summer is a time of warmth, fresh air, and abundant color – and surely there's nothing nicer than bringing those into your home with some swaps. Whether you're switching out pillows, introducing natural materials, or bringing the outdoors in, each adjustment contributes to creating a space that embodies the refreshing spirit of summer.

Charlotte Olby
Style & Trends Editor

Charlotte is style and trends editor at Homes and Gardens, and has been with the team since Christmas 2023. Following a 5 year career in Fashion, she has worked at many women's glossy magazines including Grazia, Stylist, and Hello and most recently worked as Interiors Editor for British heritage department store Liberty. Her role at H&G fuses her love of style with her passion for interior design, and she is currently undergoing her second home renovation in Surrey - you can follow her journey over on @olbyhome