spruce up

phrasal verb

spruced up; sprucing up; spruces up
: to make (someone or something) look cleaner, neater, or more attractive
We spruced up the room with a fresh coat of paint.
I need to spruce myself up a bit before we go out to dinner.

Did you know?

titivate, spruce up, smarten up, or spiff up?

Titivate, spruce, smarten, and spiff all mean "to make a person or thing neater or more attractive." Titivate often refers to making small additions or alterations in attire ("titivate the costume with sequins and other accessories"), but it can also be used figuratively (as in "titivating the script for Broadway"). Spruce up is sometimes used for cosmetic changes or renovations that give the appearance of newness ("spruce up the house with new shutters and fresh paint before trying to sell it"). Smarten up and spiff up both mean to improve in appearance often by making more neat or stylish ("the tailor smartened up the suit with minor alterations"; "he needed some time to spiff himself up for the party"). The origins of titivate are uncertain, but it may have been formed from the English words tidy and renovate.

Examples of spruce up in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Revenue from the sale of the townhomes will help the church stay afloat, spruce up the church building with fresh paint and grow charitable endeavors such as a food drive. Rebecca San Juan, Miami Herald, 12 July 2024 Renew Outdoor Furniture Before, during, and after the warm weather season, quickly spruce up your outdoor living space with the help of borax. Mary Cornetta, Better Homes & Gardens, 29 June 2024 Brought on to spruce up the comedy was screenwriter Sam Simon, who went on to be a showrunner of several hundred episodes for Fox’s The Simpsons. Anthony D'alessandro, Deadline, 24 June 2024 Northgate Boulevard’s small businesses can apply for grants to spruce up their storefronts to potentially bring more business to the area. Darrell Smith, Sacramento Bee, 19 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for spruce up 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'spruce up.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Dictionary Entries Near spruce up

Cite this Entry

“Spruce up.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/spruce%20up. Accessed 23 Jul. 2024.

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