It’s summer vacation and you and your family are off to the cottage by the lake, the beach side bungalow or the cabin in the mountains. Whatever your holiday home looks like and wherever it is, there are some easy ways to make sure that you don’t spend your vacation cleaning up!
ESSENTIAL DESIGN TIPS FOR YOUR SUMMER COTTAGE, CABIN OR BEACH BUNGALOW
DO pick low maintenance furniture and décor
The cottage isn’t the best place for that gorgeous white sofa you saw at your favorite shop. Between kids and wet bathing suits, snacks and dog paw prints, your sofa will be wrecked before it’s even out of the plastic wrapper.
Pick furnishings that can withstand a little abuse and still look great. Like:
- Wicker furniture with cushions that have washable covers are ideal and gorgeous! This is the kind of space where you can kick up the boldness of your color choices or go with a theme that you love. Nautical? French country? Whatever style you like, this is the place where you can indulge!
- Washable slipcovers are a great investment for bigger pieces of furniture.
- Keep light fixtures simple but effective for reading. Rainy days will happen, after all!
- Tables and accents in natural woods are perfect: they’re hard to wreck and the natural grains and knots only improve with time and use.
Pick décor that has similar ease of use. For example:
- Avoid endless knick knacks that will need to be dusted.
- Keep wall decorations simple and clean. Particularly in small places, too much fuss on the walls can close it in and make it seem smaller. A great option is Vänt wall panels: they add texture and color without adding clutter.
- Have plenty of washable blankets and throws for chilly evenings. Plus they add a gorgeous pop of color or design on a sofa or chair.
DON’T be surprised if it seems like the outside is coming in
At home, being fastidious about keeping mud and grass, sand and so on out of your house is a priority. At the cabin? Not so much. Adjust your clean level expectations and realize that good is good enough. You’re on vacation, after all!
To that end, maximize the outdoor space. Unless it’s raining, the indoors should be a place to sleep and that’s all! Make sure that your outdoor furniture is in good condition and appealing so that everyone will want to hang out there! Dibs on the hammock!
An outdoor dining area is essential, so you can take in the beautiful sunsets. Even better if it’s bug proofed, like a screened in porch or gazebo! The less people need to open and shut the door to the cottage, the fewer creepy crawlies gain access!
DO make your vacation home easy to clean
The last thing you want to do for the first few days of your vacation is clean. The water beckons, the beach is calling and vacuuming? That’s just not your idea of a good time. So a few tips on creating a low maintenance space:
- Use dust covers for when you’re going to be away from the property for an extended period. It will save you a lot of cleaning up when you return.
- Opt for low scuff hardwood floors and a few throw rugs rather than broadloom. A quick run around with the broom is much easier than a full vacuuming session.
- The less ‘stuff’ you have at the cottage, the less mess there is to clean up. Don’t make your vacation home the dumping ground for all the stuff you don’t have room for at your primary home.
DON’T forget to be ready for guests
If you’re lucky enough to have a holiday home, you will at some point have guests. That’s a given! So be prepared for them by incorporating dual purpose furniture, like sofa beds, as well as extra bedding, towels, and even a toothbrush or two. A few friends coming for a BBQ could end up staying the night, depending on how much fun everyone had that day!
Another good option is to have stackable stools that can come out when there are more guests and put away at other times. Extra seating in the form of benches is a nice touch in a smaller space, particularly if the lid lifts up, exposing a storage space!
DO create lots of storage
If you don’t want to spend a lot of time tidying up, make sure that you have plenty of storage and that everyone knows where everything goes. It’s easy to make it a habit to put things away, rather than dumping them on the floor or on a chair, and it makes everyone’s life a little tidier in the process.
Here are a few ideas:
- Storage baskets for hats, umbrellas and other miscellaneous clothes
- Hooks for bags, caps and jackets
- Designated shelves for sunscreen, bug spray, hand sanitizer
- Shoe racks
- A cabinet or shelves for rainy day games, extra beach towels, first aid kit and so on
- A linen closet where you can store everything from towels and sheets to cleaning products and extra shampoo
- Laundry baskets for … well, laundry!
Put these tips in place and your vacation home will in fact be a vacation for everyone!
Bee Heinemann is the Interior Decorating Expert at Vänt Wall Panels. Vänt Wall Panels completely transform a room in just minutes. Inspired spaces make for inspired living. It’s the most innovative, cost and user-friendly wall décor system ever created. They’re perfect for every room in the house from the kitchen and bedroom to the living room and office. Learn more at https://www.vantpanels.com/.