Text by Elizabeth Czapski
There’s nothing better than a slow summer afternoon spent lounging in a sunroom. Bringing you the best of both the indoor and outdoor worlds, it’s the ideal way to beat the heat from the comfort of your cottage with the bright, refreshing feel of being outside. Whether you love classic elegance, contemporary fun, or a mix that takes its primary cues from the views beyond big, beautiful windows, this roundup of some of our favorite sunrooms offers all the inspiration you’ll need to revamp yours with the perfect sunlit look for the season.
Bright & Blended
Easy slipcovered furnishings provide laid-back seating in the sunroom of this Virginia farmhouse. A vintage Hungarian bench makes a fitting resting place for a cold drink without impeding foot traffic in the narrow space. A lovely breakfast nook features a custom built-in L-shaped banquette and ladder-back chairs. The soft hues of the paint palette foster a tranquil ambience.
A glass ceiling ensures this sunroom lives up to its purpose with utmost success, and wood beams instill architectural appeal. Neutral textiles, from the performance fabric on the sofa to the woven rug, add comfortable texture to the space that encourages relaxation, while a pretty blend of prints imbues intrigue across a cheery blue-green scheme that unites the diverse designs of the wallpaper and pillows, rather than creating competition.
Hit the Nail on the Head
With exposed brick walls and a vaulted ceiling, the sunroom in this charming Alabama home came ready-made with plenty of character. Interior designer and owner Michelle Kampwerth used both the light and ample layers to bring warmth to the space cloaked in cream and taupe hues. She got creative with texture not only among the furniture and fabrics, but also at the foundational level. “The sunroom is actually embellished with nailheads,” Michelle points out. “I wanted to enhance the only Sheetrock wall with something interesting but not overwhelming to balance the brick walls.”
The sunroom in this Milton, Delaware, cottage takes advantage of its location on beautiful Broadkill Beach, utilizing a minimalist design approach with furnishings and accents that blend into the oceanfront backdrop rather than distract from it. In a spectrum of blue and white that reflects the view, a quartet of swivel chairs surrounds an ottoman for a prime fellowship hub with a beachfront feel. See more of this stunning home in our Summer issue on newsstands now.
The Swing of Things
This sunroom bridges the whimsical charm of a porch with the practical design of a study, resulting in a refreshing space perfect for activities ranging from work to rest. A swing adds a playful touch and, buried in pillows, a comfortable perch to unwind with a good book, while a sleek desk and chair offer a simple work space that’s functional without drawing focus. A restrained palette of organic colors—gray, forest green, sky blue, and blush—helps bring the outside in with serene subtlety.
If you don’t have a traditional sunroom, try getting resourceful like innovative homeowner Patty Herron and create your own with a little redecoration rather than a full-on renovation. Though this space isn’t enclosed in windows, Patty amplified the light that comes in through a set of stained glass windows by covering the opposite wall in an assortment of mismatched mirrors. She painted the wood floors to further lighten up the room. From a plush armchair, reupholstered with pops of vibrant ruby, she can now bask in the sun surrounded by some of her favorite vintage collections. See more of her antiques-filled Texas bungalow in our Vintage Cottage special issue that hits newsstands this Tuesday.
Elongated draperies with a muted print highlight the lofty windows that allow ample rays to flood this sunroom in a Virginia cottage. The neutral fabric reads gold as the space is washed in natural light during the day. The room is also fair game in the evening thanks to a pair of porcelain table lamps, while upholstered stools add extra seating to the cozy gathering grounds.
The unexpected black pane of this floor-to-ceiling window creates a striking contrast with the white shiplap it surrounds, providing a more dramatic frame to the sunlight that streams through it. Using the lush outdoor backdrop as a jumping-off point for the room’s décor, verdant houseplants and natural materials feel right at home. Notes of blush that span a mix of patterns bring warm interest to the alfresco-inspired scheme.