ON THE COLDEST WINTER DAYS, ESPECIALLY WHEN THE WINDS ARE COMING STRAIGHT FROM THE ANTARCTIC, I SPEND MY COMMUTE FANTASISING ABOUT COMING HOME AND SINKING INTO A HUGE ARMCHAIR, UNDER A PILE OF FLUFFY BLANKETS AND IN FRONT OF A CRACKLING OPEN FIREPLACE.
Usually there’s a well-brewed coffee and some jazz in the picture, too . . . and perhaps a tiny box of dark choccies. . . ohh, and a furry friend! But wait, I’m getting ahead of myself. The fact is the winter solstice isn't too far away, and us Sydneysiders are starting to feel the chill in the air. (About time, I say. It only took until May!) So, I figure it’s time we make my daydream a reality. Without further ado, here are my four best tips for transforming your home into a cosy refuge this winter.
1. WARM LIGHT BULBS
Simple? Yes. Worth the effort? Absolutely. It seems such an insignificant detail when you’re staring at a wall of nearly identical options at Bunnings, but I promise you: the right light globe makes a world of difference when styling a warm and welcoming space. Choosing products with the words “warm white” or “warm” in their name is a good rule of thumb. Flooding a room with warm light at the flick of a switch is an instant improvement to “cool” light globes, which can make homes feel clinical and frosty, especially when the weather’s not so great outside!
2. A COSY COLOUR PALETTE
I’m talking rugs, throw blankets, cushions, table runners, bed sheets, even fabrics on sofas and armchairs. Unless you’re living in tropical, far north Queensland, you can’t go wrong choosing warm neutrals when styling your home year round. Choose ivory or cream over stark white, for example, and bring out the gold tones in timber pieces with accessories in shades of red, orange, or even yellow-based green.
3. COMFORTING SCENTS
While the visual is undeniably important when making your home feel toasty warm, failing to engage the other senses would be a massive missed opportunity! If you haven’t got the time or the inclination to stand in the kitchen baking scones and cakes all day (and let’s face it, not many do), cut out the middle man and invest in a few candles to fill your home with amazing aromas with only the effort it takes to light a match. There are literally thousands of scents to choose from but, for maximum olfactory effect in winter, go for food-inspired fragrances such as vanilla, brandied pears, crème brûlée, or black raspberry. Or you could even bring out the Christmas candles!
4. WARM WOODS
Grey in all its glory came back in a big way in the design industry in recent years. So much so that many of us embraced it as our new, go-to neutral in our wardrobes as well as our homes. Gorgeous grey looked amazing all summer long but, now that it’s almost July, large expanses of this popular hue may be making your home feel a little like an ice box. The solution? Timber, of course. Warm, natural woods with golden undertones feature heavily in Industrial Style design concepts for their ability to instantly lift, revitalise and balance cool neutrals such as grey. In a living room setting such as that which is pictured below, select a beautiful jute rug in similar tones to tie it all together.There’s nothing like coming home, no matter the time of year or the state of the weather outside.
When the seasons change, most of us update our wardrobes, pulling out long boots and chunky knits while putting swimwear and beach gear into storage, or vice versa. Why not do the same for your home?