5 easy things you can do to update your living room for spring

Designers share the best ways to uplift and re-energise your living space ready for brighter days

living room with neutral sofa, built in cabinetry and patterned rug to support expert advice on ways to update your living room for spring
(Image credit: Design: Interior Fox, Photography: Veronica Rodriguez)

We always feel a sense of excitement and pride when we change up our living spaces, and sometimes the simplest, most inexpensive ideas are the most effective. As the natural world begins to bloom after winter, now is a wonderful time to dust off our homes, store the heavy blankets away and switch things up a little. 

There are so many brilliant, easy ways to update your home for spring, that leave our homes feeling lighter and brighter after the colder months, mentally getting us ready for sunnier days. 

To update your living room for spring, you might want to start with a more thorough spring cleaning session, moving sofas and armchairs away from the walls and getting in hard-to-reach spots. Some home organising is also a great place to start.

How to update your living room for spring

Below, we have rounded up interior designers' five favourite ways to refresh a living space as we transition into a new season, bringing positive energy into the home.

1. Change your scent

homes fragrances on a glass sideboard with yellow roses in a vase in front of a sunburst wallpaper design

(Image credit: Future)

Scent often gets forgotten, but it makes a huge impact on how we feel. So think about adding a springlike fragrance to your living room with new scented candles or oil diffusers to welcome an uplifting atmosphere. "Scents can change the whole vibe of your home – choose the right one, and it can be just as important as your décor in influencing how you feel in a space," says Decorbuddi interior designer Jenny Wood

"In winter, warm spicy and berry fragrances will set the scene for cosy nights in; but in the spring, swap these for fresh, delicate leafy florals and citrus aromas to give your room a much lighter vibe," Jenny continues. By scent-scaping at home you can go a step further and create a soothing feel in the bedroom and a welcoming one in the hallway, simply using the power of scent. 

In the living room, opt for freesia, rose, vetiver, lemon, orange blossom, lavender, lily, cherry blossom and jasmine.

Jenny Wood
Jenny Wood

Jenny has worked in the interiors industry for over 15 years, styling a huge variety of homes and spaces and renovating properties to create that "feel good" factor. Passionate about colour, plants and the life-changing power of storage, Jenny’s design work sees her helping clients with projects both big and small.

2. Swap cushion covers

neutral taupe living room with blue and yellow accent coloured accessories on armchair and sofa

(Image credit: Future | Simon Whitmore)

If you have a lot of cushions in your living room, try taking a few away to make things feel more airy – consider reducing the amount of cushions you have on your sofa as a starting point. Swap heavy knitted or velvet covers for lighter linens in the light and airy palette of spring. 

"Cushions really can make such a difference in your living room and make it feel cosy with their mix of textures and patterns," says interior designer Sophie Clemson from The Living House. 

"If you love having a switch up for spring, then take a look at cushion covers rather than purchasing a whole new cushion. H&M Home and Dunelm have a beautiful range of affordable cushion covers – all you need to do is take off your current cushion covers and store them away for winter. It couldn’t be easier, and it's a cheap way to update your living room on a budget."

Interior designer Ilaria Barion says that by introducing pastel accents, such as soft blues, delicate pinks, and muted greens through throw pillows, you can instantly brighten the room and create a more inviting atmosphere without a major investment.

Sophie Clemson
Sophie Clemson

Sophie Clemson is the co-founder of The Living House, an affordable online interior design company that helps busy families transform their homes easily, online and within their budget.

3. Add plants

bright and airy living room with sofa and armchair

(Image credit: Photography: Decorbuddi / Design: Laura Nicolson)

The best indoor plants bring greenery, texture, and all the happy vibes, breathing life into any space. Plants also provide a visual link with the lush greenery that’s springing up outside your window. Interior designer Jenny Wood says plants go with almost every décor scheme, so you really can't go wrong.

"Pop them in baskets or tactile earthenware pots for a natural vibe, or glam them up with glossy ceramic or sculptural planters," she says. 

"Just as they appear in the wild, place your plants at different heights to add interest – on the floor; on shelves and mantlepieces, and up high with plant hangers or by training them along wires across the ceiling." 

"You don’t have to spend a fortune either, visit your local supermarket for some budget-friendly plants," says Sophie Clemson. Jenny recommends these easy houseplants to keep alive: Snake Plant, Dracena, Pothos, Zamioculcas Zamifolia and Parlour Palms.

Just be sure to avoid the most common houseplant mistakes but because plant can can differ wildly from one species to another – knowing how to care for a peace lily will feel like a breeze rather than navigating how to care for an orchid. Ensure you know how often to water your houseplants in question – because dead houseplants are not great for improving decor. 

4. Switch out your curtains

sofa with sheer curtains in blue living room

(Image credit: Hillarys)

"One of the best interior tricks to spring-ifying a room is to swap the curtains," says Jenny Wood. She explains that heavy, lined velvet curtains might be great in the colder months, but in spring and summer, not only will they darken a space and keep the heat in, but the sun’s rays can bleach the colour from them. 

By swapping them for cotton, linen, or sheer drapes, you’ll not only freshen up your scheme, but you’ll make both sets of curtains last longer. 

"It sounds a faff, but it’s a job that can be done within an hour and will make a huge difference," says Jenny.

5. Rearrange your furniture

bright and airy living room with sofa and armchair

(Image credit: Photography: Decorbuddi / Design: Amanda Delaney)

Moving your furniture around is one of the best ways to transform your living room on a budget, leaving the space feeling totally different. Follow our small living room layout rules, such as avoiding having the back of the sofa facing you as you walk into the room, and think about how you'll be using the space in spring and summer.

"A close-together furniture arrangement that feels warm and intimate in the colder months may not work quite as well when the weather improves," begins Decorbuddi designer Jenny. "Give yourself space to breathe by decluttering, then consider relocating an armchair, table or sofa nearer a window to make the most of the sunshine." 

You can also move furniture away from patio doors to improve the flow of your room when they’re thrown open.

How can I update my living room for spring on a budget?

Thoroughly cleaning your house never goes amiss – dusting the living room and cleaning the windows will freshen up the space and let more light in. Display spring branches or flowers in a transparent glass vase on the coffee table or pick up cut tulips or pussy willow at the supermarket.

How do you transition from winter to spring decor?

"When the sun starts to shine and we transition from winter to spring, I always think it's a good time to take a look around your home and see if you could declutter anywhere," says interior designer Sophie Clemson. "Before purchasing any new spring-inspired homeware, sort out and declutter, you’ll then have a good idea of any new homeware additions you can bring into your home."

Millie Hurst
Contributing Editor

Millie Hurst is a freelance writer and interior designer based in Sheffield, helping clients create homes that are characterful, curated, and highly functional. Interior design inspirations include Jake Arnold, Beata Heuman and Abigail Ahern. Her personal style is a 'liveable maximalism' with boho, nature-inspired designs. 

She has seven years of experience in the world of digital journalism, most recently working as Head of Solved at Homes & Gardens, where she wrote and edited countless features on home organisation, decluttering and interior design. Before that, she was Senior Content Editor at Ideal Home.