Home: Domain: Projects: Pretty … Quick

Ten simple steps to transform a summer rental

Renting a place down the Shore is as tried-and-true a summer tradition as getting a ­sunburn. This season, do it right: A few easy, breezy ­decorating tweaks will make a by-the-week beach house feel like a vacation home of your very own. (Oh, and this year, wear sunblock.)

Almost Like Home

For the bedroom
• Stash a time-share’s tired nautical art in the linen closet. Replace with your own framed photos from summers past.
• Who trusts a strange alarm clock? Bring your own — and wake up on time when it’s your turn for pancake duty.
• Instantly upgrade your sleep. Substitute your own soft, summery bedding, like these Serena & Lily linens, from $110, and butterfly pillow, $34, from Nancy Koltes At Home.

For the living room
• A comfy cotton throw or a simple white slipcover immediately refreshes worn or dated upholstery.
• Scented candles pull double duty as room fresheners and decorations for surfaces left empty by stowed seashell tchotchkes.
• Buy hydrangeas, zinnias and sunflowers at Jersey’s famous roadside farmstands. Arrange them in the souvenir mugs, glasses and vases that seem to fill every rental’s kitchen.

For the kitchen
• Bring along potted herbs to dress up both the kitchen window and fresh grilled seafood.
• Speaking of cooking … Until you grill them, display fresh summer veggies in a big bowl or basket for kitchen color.
• Pro chefs always tote their own knives. You should, too — bring paring, chef’s and in-­between-size models, carefully wrapped in colorful tea towels.

Packing tip
Pack all of the above in laundry baskets, which become easy storage for kids’ toys and beach towels.

Want to spend a week in this quaint Ocean City cottage? Contact Steve Booth, Prudential Fox & Roach Realtors, 609-399-8822, ocnj.com.