I am returning to the world of interiors, following the past few months’ garden-related posts. However, I’m not quite ready to come indoors entirely, the theme of the month: June is ‘Summerhouses’. There is something completely magical about these small-scale, cosy, romantic temporary dwellings. They encourage relaxation or concentration, providing perfect settings for reading, writing, painting or taking afternoon tea. They also offer shelter from a passing rain shower without having to give up the freedom of being outdoors and they are absolutely perfect for a candle-lit dinner à deux.
A good summer house also provides the opportunity to extend the ambience around the hut itself through paving, gravel (rounded, washed pea shingle only for comfortable barefoot walking) or brick – herringbone pattern looks good here. Add some plants, a chandelier or candlesticks – or tea lights in jam jars for a true shabby chic ambience – dimmable electric lighting, if possible, will provide great ambient light. If some form of heating can be installed, a plug-in heater will do, the seasons for use can be greatly extended.
The most important thing is to create a haven away from the main house, where mundane concerns simply melt away and creativity, contemplation or relaxation – alone, or with friends and loved ones – is the order of the day.
Shabby- chic summerhouse with Lloyd Loom furniture for a perfect English afternoon tea (Online Image). Available from: http://www.housetohome.co.uk/roomidea/picture/shabby-chic-decorating-ideas/10 Accessed: 16/06/14
The ‘View House’ in Argentina, designed by Blue Ant Studio. Available from: http://modernhousenotes.blogspot.co.uk/2010_07_01_archive.html Accessed: 16/06/14
Queen Mary’s Summer House. Available from: http://www.landmarktrust.org.uk/our-landmarks/properties/queen-annes-summerhouse-10475/ Accessed: 16/06/14
Two-storey Summerhouse also used as a potting shed. Available from: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/221731981628231772/ Accessed 16/06/14
Archetypal romantic summerhouse. Available from: http://blog.daum.net/jyo0727/15855700 Accessed: 16/06/14