Ring in spring with touches of nature

After the long, cold winter, I’m absolutely thrilled to roll out the red carpet for spring. In addition to eating way too much Easter candy, one of my favorite rites of spring is to lighten and brighten my home’s interior décor with some killer seasonal accents. When you have the right decorating tools, it’s fun and easy to tweak your year-round displays so they celebrate this season of new life. Here are a few of my favorite accents on the market this spring.

Bird aviaries: Whether they are documented antiques or well-made replicas, I love these large, wooden birdcages that hark back to the Victorian era. My favorite is a four-story bird mansion because it looks stunning anyplace you need a larger accent that’s loaded with drama.

How about filling a larger aviary with ferns and placing it atop any cabinet or on the shelf above the door in your two-story entryway?

White pottery jars: Simple and sleek, white pottery is a great pick for spring. You could go crazy with these tall vases and squat-lidded jars because they are so clean, simple and inexpensive.

Cluster a group of three on your mantel, or let a mismatched set march down the center of your dining-room table. Leave the jars blissfully bare, or insert a single fern frond if you want just a pop of color.

Natural decorative balls: Whether they are made of moss, faux ferns or twigs, I absolutely love these organic decorating pieces, especially in spring. For an easy and attractive kitchen-table centerpiece, fill a wooden dough bowl with a passel of natural decorative balls in a variety of sizes, shapes and hues of green and brown.

Anything to do with birds: I’ve had a lifelong romance with birds. Every season, my love grows deeper as I see the newest pieces that product designers come up with so we can invite these delightful little creatures into our homes.

To bring a touch of spring to your table, use salad plates decorated with images of birds. Hang artwork depicting birds or nests on your walls, tuck them into a bookcase or prop them on a corner of your kitchen cabinet. Insert a few egg-filled nests and bird figurines into your year-round displays. Fill an apothecary jar will natural-looking speckled eggs and display it on your mantel, dining-room table or buffet.

Frogs: I get a kick out of surprising and delighting my guests, so I always add just a touch of whimsy to the displays in my home. This spring, I’ll be brightening visitors’ days with playful frog figurines. Sneak one onto your windowsill, next to your potted herbs. Or use an iron birdbath featuring a frog holding a lily pad above its head as a fun coffee-table centerpiece.

Hurricane lamps in wire baskets: When I saw three tall glass cylinders inserted into a white wire basket, I was captivated. I couldn’t wait to fill them with battery-operated candles and hang them from the eves of a gazebo or the limbs of trees to add romantic sparkle to my garden. You could also put a phalanx up your front walk. Or use a cluster to add soft light to your patio table.

Wreaths in spring greens: To add a touch of color to your front door, hang a faux fern wreath with a gossamer green ribbon. Or put a piece of garden statuary, like a crumbling bust or an angel, at the center of your dining-room table, then encircle it with a wreath of fern fronds.

Wire cloches: I’ve been a long and loyal fan of glass cloches. So when a playful wire cloche hit the market this year, I was intrigued. Made from white or rusted natural wire, the cloches look adorable over a spring plant or a bird figurine.

Mary Carol Garrity owns several home furnishings stores in Atchison, Kan., and wrote several books on home decorating. Write to her at nellhills@mail.lvnworth .com. Her column is syndicated by Scripps Howard News Service.

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