The Cozy Home by Carriann Johnson

The Cozy Home

We all want it. Here’s how you get it…

Happy December, everyone! Can you even believe that I’m saying that? I can’t either. It feels like yesterday that I was telling myself, “Christmas is only 4 months away!” Ahhh! And here we are. As temperatures plummet, it’s only natural to start craving comfort foods like chili, meatloaf, and hot cocoa. The electric blankets are making their way from the hall closet to our beds. Those warm sweaters and extra thick clothing items are pushed to the front of our closets as our calendars inch closer and closer to “First day of Winter”. The reality of the season is upon us. (Sniffle).

While many of us anxiously wait all year for the soothing temperatures of Summer, most of us live in climates where temperatures drop and seasons change. So if you can’t afford to move to the Canary Islands where temperatures year round are 64 – 77 degrees, then why not embrace each season by looking at the positive? After all, attitude is everything, right? Part of that attitude is acclimating to the changes that need to take place in our homes. While it may be chilly outside, consider some of my design tips to cozy up your home this winter!

Add A Wall Mounted Electric Fireplace

Add a wall mount fire place

I was sitting in the lobby of a local business and saw one of these mounted on the wall. As I walked over it to it, I discovered that it actually was radiating heat from it! “How awesome is that?” I thought. Imagine the possibilities in your home? How about that room that never seems to get warm enough? That space that doesn’t allow for a fireplace but you’ve always wanted one? In your dining room where you know you’ll be entertaining guests anyway? After a few minutes on the internet, I discovered all different shapes, sizes, colors, and price ranges on these. Perhaps there’s one that meets your needs?

A Basket of Slippers

A basket of slippers by the front door

Place a basket of slippers near the front door to encourage guests (and yourself!) to keep their feet warm. Cold feet and hands are to be expected in the winter months….but they don’t have to be inside your home. Find a large, fun basket that coordinates with your décor and fill it with 6-8 pairs of slippers. Make them different colors and sizes to accommodate everyone. I can promise you that you will love this idea, especially when you notice your basket is empty and smiles are all over your home!

Soften all those hard surfaces

Soften the hard surfaces to make the room feel cozy

Our senses are a portal to our moods. Ever notice how everyone starts to feel better as we approach the dinner table for a meal? Or how we immediately feel like taking a nap when we snuggle up on a cozy chair or sofa? Or how happy we may feel when we hear one of our favorite songs as we enter a restaurant or a clothing store? The smell of apple pie or cinnamon can calm our soul. Upon discovering a faux fur pillow or blanket, we may find ourselves protecting it like a newborn! Our surroundings can surely alter our moods. Successful interior design occurs when the human element is considered. Spaces can have the illusion they are colder than they actually are when they don’t invite us into them. Here is my list of items to add to hard surface spaces that immediately add the cozy factor:

* Add a wool or heavy cashmere blanket and/or pillows to a leather sofa.

* Add a rug under seating areas, even if the floor is carpeted. (Rugs also help define a space, so it’s a double win!) Add rugs to hard surfaces like tile and wood floors. Especially under dining tables and kitchen tables. Feeling something soft under your feet while you eat encourages you to slow down, enjoy your meal, and the moment.

* Add florals, silks, or artificial greens to tabletop areas. A space that has a lot of hard surfaces will also have a lot of noise reflection. If you can hear an echo in your space, chances are it needs some ‘warming up’ with the right décor items. Adding florals is the fail-proof cure. Notice how this foyer looks in this home. The floral on the hall table, the rug, and the pillows and throw on the bench all invite you into this warm and cozy space.

Area rugs create warmth

Illuminate!

Illuminate the room

I can’t say enough great things about candles. Not only do they add color to our spaces ,but (when lit) they add ambiance. They let off heat. They change the entire mood of a space! Coordinate with your seasonal décor and don’t forget….to use them!! Light them. All of them!!

Window Coverings For Warmth

Window Coverings For Warmth

You wouldn’t bake a birthday cake and not add frosting to it, right? The same idea applies to great spaces. They are by far one of the most overlooked areas of your home that add function, style, color, warmth, design, and help insulate. I’ve always loved standard window panels to complement windows. Choose a panel that is a part of your color palette within the space. You’ll be happy you did!

Warm Colored Shades

Warm pallets bring the cozy to the room

Choose a color palette that coordinates with the colors in your space. A warm color will always soften the look in your room and create warmth. And if you select just the right color, you will have a timeless look that lasts for years to come.

Contrast or compliment the window shade colors

Follow these tips when making your home cozy this Season and it will have you feeling warm all the way to Spring!

Happy Decorating!

Carriann Johnson