Header summer home

Gimme Shelter: A Summer Decor How-To

A change of season is an excuse to not only give your wardrobe a bit of a refresher, but your home too. Read on to discover how three of our chicest friends channel summer in their home decor.


Favorite ways to accessorize the home for summer: We just moved out to a little beach spot in Malibu a few weeks ago, and I immediately felt like shedding as much stuff as possible, making the items we do have that much more important. As one would imagine, in my house we always have my light cashmere blankets around. In California just about every night gets chilly enough for a blanket, especially after long days in the sun. Around any sort of water it is imperative to have an endless supply of towels around. For adults, I have been collecting great beach towels for years, but for kids I like Yikestwins towels (1).

The perfect host/hostess gift: I once had a friend show up to my house for a party with a beautiful set of handmade shot glasses as a host gift. Turns out the friend felt the shot glasses I had on hand didn’t honor the level of tequila we were drinking that night. I kind of loved the brashness of it, and I now employ that idea for host gifts from time to time. Recently I bought a good friend a backgammon set when we visited his beach house down the coast. I knew he didn’t have one and after a few days of enjoying the set together, it stayed as a permanent fixture. The El Casco travel backgammon set (2) would go over well under this scenario.

Home fragrance of choice: This one is pretty simple for me. We always have fresh tuberose around the house in the summer. This mixed with the ocean air sets an easygoing, good vibe. However, from time to time we will burn a Diptyque tuberose mini candle (3) when in a pinch. They are fantastic.

Entertaining must-haves: Great tequila (4), lots of herbs and good tunes are all perfect for every summer season.

(photos of Greg Chait courtesy of Lisa Eisner; photo of and Greg’s Malibu home by Ricardo DeAratanha of the Los Angeles Times

*     *     *

Favorite ways to accessorize the home for summer:  Buy tons of brightly colored napkins and use them all over your house, under vases or bedside lamps…as well as on your dining table. I especially love Kim Seybert latticed napkins (1).

Perfect host/hostess gift: Everyone gives candles or booze. Step it up a notch with a Fornasetti pillow (2)—always a huge hit.

Home fragrance of choice: The summer is a great time to go bohemian or even fauxhemian with a little patchouli. A Diptyque patchouli mini candle (3) is a must-have in my home.

Entertaining must-haves: Summer is a great time for knocking back copious amounts of… almost anything. But you need a chic Kim Seybert croc tumbler (4) from which to imbibe.

(photos of  Simon Doonan and Jonathan Adler’s home courtesy of Joshua McHugh and Architectural Digest


*     *     *

Favorite ways to accessorize the home for summer: Mud Australia dinnerware is perfectly simple and the right balance of rugged and elegant. Fresh fruit and vegetables from the Barryville farmer’s market (2), which is small but has everything I could want or need. Vintage Vera napkins combined with simple linen napkins in wheat and ivory—for example, the Libeco Ligae napkins (1). Flowers from the meadow (6). Short story anthologies from the ’60s and ’70s plus new photography books for friends who want to read or just look—Taschen’s Paris. Portrait of a City or Kathy Ryan’s The New York Times Magazine: Photographs (3). Chance foutas and beach towels.

The perfect host/hostess gift: A large beautiful bowl in an organic or rough hewn shape. The Georg Jensen large bloom bowl (8) is a great example, ideally full of fresh fruit.  The bowl always gets used, and the fruit always gets eaten. Lining the bowel with a special vintage or new napkin or a kitchen hand towel is a nice touch. As is pairing it with a bottle of wine or apéritif.

Go-to home fragrance: I’m very loyal to Kai candles (5), which have a gorgeous gardenia scent blended with other white flowers.

Entertaining must-haves: For the kitchen: lime popsicles, Sancerre rosé and Campari, Mymouné rose preserves (great with cheese and crackers, on granola with yogurt, or a dollop on vanilla sorbet) and while I don’t drink coffee, I always have Sight Glass Blueboon Blend or Porto Rico Cafe Blend beans on hand for friends—and of course, olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Herban Essentials lemon towelettes for the mud room and glove compartment (handy after hikes and after eating drippy soft serve ice cream cones). Kiehl’s vital sun protection SPF 30 (4). Thank you notes—for example, these beautiful cards from Connor (7)—because sometimes I tear myself away from my home and visit friends, which always winds up being a total treat!

(photo of  Julia Leach by Chris Shipman; photo of wildflowers courtesy of Flickr user futurowoman) 

 SHOP THE ELDER STATESMAN | SHOP CHANCE 

Comments