The sun is shining, the temperature is climbing and people everywhere are wearing their biggest smiles and their favourite sunkissed glow, which can only mean one thing: summer is back. And while you’re probably dreaming of days spent in the garden, cooking up yet another feast on the barbecue as you enjoy the sweet-scent of sun cream, your kitchen will still be the place to be, working just as hard as normal — if not harder — as you finally get to play host to your favourite people.
And in case you need a little refresher after our collective year off, here’s a definitive guide to getting your kitchen summer-ready so that it looks great and works even better.
Refresh Your Colours For A Summer Vibe
You don’t need a completely new kitchen to refresh the look and feel of your kitchen space this summer; you just need to be savvy with your choices. Add some colourful dinnerware to your kitchen cabinets, spruce up your table mats and add a touch of summer with some fun new coasters. In short, find some fun kitchen accessories that add a little dollop of colour – anything light and bright is Pantone’s colour suggestion this year – and enjoy the lovely summer vibe you’ve easily whipped up.
Bring The Outside In
Whether or not you have bi-fold doors you can pull open, the most simple, effective and picturesque way to welcome the great outdoors into your kitchen is with a windowsill herb garden. There’s just something so lovely about seeing natural light flood in through a window full of fresh basil, mint and thyme, all of which will be delicious additions to your favourite summer dishes (and cocktails).
Deep Clean Your Chopping Boards
Summer days are made for fresh fruits and crunchy vegetables – from zucchini salads to strawberries and cream – so your chopping boards are going to see a lot of use between now and the end of September. So even if yours are creatively hidden out of sight, now is the time to pull them out and give them a pre-summer cleanse using a bit of salt and half a lemon, nothing more. Simply sprinkle some salt on your boards (and maybe your wooden worktops too) and use your half-a-lemon as a makeshift sponge. Repeat this every month and you’ll have the cleanest boards and a citrus-scented kitchen to match.
Time To Rotate Your Gadgets
When the weather changes, so do our cooking habits, so why not get ahead of the weather and rotate your seasonal gadgets. Swap your slow cooker for your favourite blender, your pasta machine for your ice cream maker and bring your vegetable spiralizer to the front of your utensils drawer because every kitchen should celebrate functionality, especially a shaker kitchen. Just make sure everything you’re putting away is pristine clean and everything you’re pulling out for the summer has been dusted off so that it’s ready when you need it.
Clean Up Your Cabinets
Summer is the season of positivity, of good vibes and great times… but also insects. For whatever reason, they love the warmer weather, making now the ideal time to clean up your cabinets. To do this, start by taking everything out of your cupboards and off your larder shelves. Then clean up any spills and make sure every container is properly sealed, both of which are magnets for insects. Once you’ve done this, simply place everything back where it was and enjoy the best bits of the summer.
Make Your Appliances More Efficient
The warmer it is outside, the harder your appliances will have to work, which is where a good old fashioned deep clean comes in. By spending an afternoon degreasing your oven, clearing out the airways of your extractor fan, scrubbing the limescale out of your dishwasher and, most importantly of all, cleaning your fridge’s coils, you’ll be reducing a lot of the strain placed on them, allowing them to work much more efficiently throughout the hot summer months.
Accent Colours Will Make Your Kitchen Pop
Summer is all about light and bright colours, and an easy yet stylish way to add this look to your kitchen is with some accent colours dotted around your space. Swap your neutral lampshades for something more vibrant, paint your island a different colour to create a standout centrepiece or pick a wall you can see from your garden and give it a fun makeover with a feature wallpaper. That said, even the addition of a brightly coloured fruit bowl or a bouquet of fresh flowers placed in sight will bring an extra level of sunshine into your space.
Wash Your Kitchen Windows
Whether you have a south facing house or a home that basks in the morning sun, once that summer sun starts shining through your kitchen windows, you’re going to realise just how dirty the glass really is. So grab your to-do list and make a plan to clean your windows on the next overcast day. That way you can clean them without worrying the sun will dry out your solution before you’ve even had a chance to wipe it off, which would only leave you with streak-filled windows.
Treat Yourself To A Few Summer Recipes
Whether you plan on enjoying some laid-back afternoons with your family or hosting full-on dinner parties with your friends, you’ll want to serve up some summer-infused dishes that celebrate the warm days, so make sure you have a few sunny-day recipes ready to call on. Grilled halloumi with watermelon and capers, miso salmon with ginger noodles, gin and tonic ice lollies, Charred nectarine & prosciutto panzanella — whatever steals your fancy, now is the time to try some new dishes out ready for your next get-together.