As a long-time cottager just returned from a glorious Victoria Day long weekend, my thoughts are on easy summer decorating tips to spruce up your home-away-from-home. I’ve been traveling to Kennisis Lake in the Kawarthas since I was a kid- my Dad having the brilliant prescience to buy land way before it was fashionable- and I’ve been part of the constant renovations that transformed a tiny A frame to a spacious retreat for a large family. Decorating up north was always done on the cheap: old couches from home, hand-sewn curtains, hand-me-down dishes (some chipped), mis-matched sheets and the odd nic-nack that didn’t belong in the city (remember the crocheted owl?). While I don’t recommend turning your place into a jumbled-up junk collection, I don’t think that spending a lot of money is necessary. The look should be casual, kid/sand proof and easy to maintain with a few stylish touches to make it feel up-to-date. In the spirit of summer (yay!) I did a little scout of my local Homesense stores to suggest a few great finds that won’t break the bank.
Here is a handy bottle tote that is as practical as it is stylish. It’s casual and rustic and perfect for the dock, the table or a pic nic, $19.99.
Homesense does a terrific job with lanterns. This is just one of the many, many great options. I like this one because it’s woodsy, has a great handle and looks modern (and tropical in the right setting). $28.99
These platters are great for big BBQs. The colour is perfect for summer and the design is modern. $49.99
I love these twiggy director’s chairs. They come in two colours (avocado as seen and navy) and have a matching table (behind). Chair $49.99
I would love to see this glass lamp with woven shade in a beachy living room with a big white couch and sisal rug. $49.99
These carpets are indoor/outdoor and are perfect for sandy feet. The best part? If they look less-than-fresh come September, don’t feel bad about replacing for next season! $19.99
Are you sensing a theme? This mirror has a faux-wood frame that is perfect for a guest bedroom or foyer. $29.99
Every cottager knows that good beach towels are a major must-have. These ones are super plush in amazing colours. $16.99
I love this substantial planter that wouldn’t even dream of blowing over in the wind. $49.99
I use baskets for everything from magazines to throw blankets to firewood. I really like the worn grey-beige colour of this one. $19.99
Stylish coolers are another necessity. I love the fresh turquoise with silver trim and great price point. Just add ice and your favorite drinks! $12.99
I like this little jug because of it’s African-craft look and pretty colour. I think this would be perfect as a bit of cottage decoration on a book shelf or table. $19.99
Have fun decorating and remember that the purpose of escaping to the cottage is to relax and take it down a notch. Shop for stylish items that will last and won’t cause stress when that Visa bill comes in the mail!