If you're straining to see the exact color of your ready-to-roll summer outfits, your windows may be trying to “tell” you something: It's time to maximize the natural light in your home, just in time for summer, when the longer days will mean more hours of daylight.
Five ideas will help brighten the rooms in your home, no matter what their exposure to the sun:
1. Begin with a clean slate
Yes, your windows probably look clean from a distance (as most things do). If your home is like many others, it might be a toss-up between which side of the window is dirtier: the inside or outside. It's been nearly four years since the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced that levels of indoor pollutants are often two to five times higher than those of outdoor pollutants. You can count on a vinegar-water mix to cut through the grime on both sides of your windows, leaving a sparkling, streak-free shine.
2. Inspect your paint choices
Lighter colors reflect natural light – and make rooms look larger, too. That's just the walls; there's a reason why “ceiling white” is shorthand for the standard color of ceiling paint. If you can't bear to part with a dark, dramatic color on a wall, consider painting the ceiling at least one shade lighter.
3. Hang mirrors and other reflective surfaces near your windows
Placed directly opposite from windows, mirrors and reflective surfaces form a visual “dance” with outdoor light, making your windows and rooms look and feel bigger, brighter and even more energetic. Decorative mirrors will invigorate any room – and so much the better if you can form a wall collage. In the kitchen, a reflective backsplash (think copper) can set an optical dance of light in motion.
4. Open your doors to sunlight
Take this advice literally and figuratively, for replacing a solid door with one that features several small glass panels can make an enormous difference in the amount of light that streams into your home at all times of the day. Alternatively, if you have a storm door you love, install a glass storm door over it and keep the main door open so you can maximize natural light in your home.
5. Lighten up the opacity level of your window shades
You may have inherited heavy window shades from the previous owner of your home. Or you may have replaced them yourself but were in a hurry to do so, grabbing the first shade you could find at the first store you could find it at. (It happens.) Now is the time to make a free in-home consultation with a Polar Shades window expert, who can show you the differences between sheer, semi-sheer and opaque fabrics. You don't have to sacrifice privacy to let the natural light in – and begin enjoying the longer, brighter days that summer has in store for you at the same time. Call 702-260-6110 to get started.