real estate

7 ways to bring the outdoors in

Use natural materials inside and out
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Indoor garden

One way to bring the outdoors into the home is to use natural materials, Bromstad says.

One option: bare birch or other tree branches, he says.

Want to give it a more modern look? "Grab yourself a spray can" and paint them in a bright color such as fuchsia or lime green. Painted branches can "carry you through the seasons," he says. Paint them pink for spring and repaint in white, blue or green for Christmas.

Another way to enjoy nature is to install a water feature just outside the house.

"My mother-in-law found a fountain and installed it right outside her kitchen," Gillingham-Ryan says. "You hear it trickling in the background all day long, and it's lovely."

Place it where you can see and hear it from inside the house.

In most climates, you'll have to put it to bed before winter comes, Gillingham-Ryan says. "But it makes it all the more lovely when you wake it up in the spring."




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