Pretty much all of us love to return home from a long, tiring day at work to a warm, comfortable and inviting home.
And yet, with long hours at work, all of the cleaning and housework, and some attempt at having a social life, it can often feel like a next to impossible task to create a home that you love, that looks clean and cosy all year round, and that is welcoming to your friends and family.
Creating a inviting and comfortable home, unfortunately, isn’t something that can be bought in a box. Although there are some pretty easy and affordable ways to create a comfy, cosy home for your and your pals.
FYI – I am currently embarking on this very exercise at the mo in my own home, so be sure to keep an eye on my progression on the ‘gram.
Create A Warm Entrance
They say first impressions count, and this is so true when it comes to your home. When guests – and yourselves, for that matter, walk into your house, make them feel instantly welcome.
Your hallway is probably the first room that they will see so make sure it is clean and tidy. Paint in lighter colours, as dark colours can often make small spaces seem even smaller, and carefully position mirrors to create an illusion of space and light.
Think about seasonal touches, such as fairy lights wrapped around stair railings in the winter and bunches of bright, cut flowers in vases on side tables. Potted plants always look good, and will help to increase the oxygen in a room – which is always a good thing!
If you want your guests to take their shoes off before they enter the rest of your house, provide somewhere to put them out of the way. You could even consider providing sets of spare spa-style slippers for them to wear while they visit – fancy!
Make A Feature of The Fireplace
If you have a fireplace, make sure that you use it. It is one of the quickest and easiest ways to create ambiance and cosiness in a home thanks to the soft glow and warmth it can emit – and even more so if you are lucky to have an open fire. The sound of wood crackling will always relax people! If you have a fireplace without a fire, as many do, fill the space with candles or flowers. They might not quite have the same effect, but it looks great anyway!
Candles are an excellent way to make your home feel cosy and inviting. Just like the fire, it gives out a gentle light but also fills your home with beautiful scents of your choice. Whether you prefer citrus and fruity scents or classic deeper smells, you will definitely find a candle that suits your personality and your home.
Add texture with throws and cushions
Everyone loves snuggling down on their duresta sofas, surrounded by heaps of cushions and throws. Think about all the films and adverts you see, with people curled up with a hot drink and a blanket over them. You want to feel like that, and you want your guests to feel like that, so by adding plenty, both on the sofas and perhaps in a basket near the fireplace, you always have some to hand. It also has the added appeal of adding a layer of warmth on cold days and saving money on those expensive energy bills!
Many of us opt for laminate or wooden floors these days for ease of cleaning, but they can often lack the warmth and softness of carpets. If you have hard flooring, consider adding some big shaggy rugs in the living room to create a cosier feeling. Plus they feel lush under your feet too!
Make Sitting Down and Moving About Easy
You may not mind having to shuffle furniture around – moving a dining seat to get through to the table, for example, but your guests may feel very different.
Not knowing how to move around a space can leave some people feeling uncomfortable, so make sure that they are able to sit down comfortably without having to rearrange the space.
Small homes are harder to do this, as we need to fit more furniture into less space, but be creative if necessary. You want to make sure that routes in and out of the room, to the kitchen, to the bathroom and to the front door are clear and accessible.
Try not to overcrowd the room with furniture- do you really need that huge bookcase there, or can it go upstairs? And, if you have small children, as difficult as it can sometimes be, make sure there are no toys lying about for your guests to trip over
Clear Away The Clutter
Clutter is something that can cause agitation to both your guests and you. We are all guilty of putting something down, intending to put it away at some point, and weeks later, it is still in the same spot. Letters get put down on the side ready to be handled the next day, and before you know it, there are piles everywhere. Try to implement a ‘touch once’ policy – handle things just once before putting them away or disposing of them. If you can’t do this, then buy some cute storage baskets and hide it all – after all, out of sight, out of mind!
Add Your Personality.
People are coming to your house to see you, so let your personality shine through. This might be an eclectic piece of furniture, or a choice of your favourite artwork or photographs framed and put up on the wall – whatever it is, do not be afraid to show it off.
Nothing can be more uninviting that harsh overhead lighting. Think gentle and soft – side lights, lamps, and even fairy lights can really add to a welcoming feeling. Swap out clear light bulbs for pearl ones. Natural lighting is always a big draw as well, especially in the summer months. Throw open the curtains and blinds and embrace the bright sunshine!
Bring The Outdoors In
If you have any sort of outdoor space, whether it is a large garden, a balcony or some decking, make that part of your living space. The easiest way of doing this is through lighting – sometimes, just a simple lantern with a candle inside it can make it an extension of the room. You could also think about the other way round – bringing the outside in, by having big sweeping plants throughout the house. It has been shown that green plants can have a really positive effect on one’s mood.
Think About Your Colour Scheme
Modern and minimalist is a trend that has been popular for many years now, with white walls and furniture everywhere, but it can, if not done correctly, seem to be a little stark and uninviting. Do not underestimate the impact that colour can have on a room. Earthy tones such as wine, copper, gold, and orange can make a space feel really cosy and intimate. In addition to this, a neutral palette for soft furnishings and using a variety of different textures for accessories is a great way to add interest to the room without being overwhelmed by colour.
Dress The Windows
As we mentioned above, making the most of natural light is key. However, when the sun has gone down, and it is time to draw in for the night, how the windows are dressed can make a whole lot of difference, especially in the winter. Heavy fabrics and dark colours can make a room feel warmer and cozy, and keep the heat in the room.
Be The Hostess With The Mostess
You can have the most beautiful and inviting home on the planet, but what really makes your guests feel relaxed and never want to leave is you. For many people, hosting does not come naturally, but if you make sure they are comfortable, have plenty to eat and drink, and you smile, engage and ask questions, they will feel welcomed by both you and your home. Loving your home is an important part of it, and from these tips, you should be able to see that creating a cosy living space is not just achievable, but affordable too. Thinking carefully about lighting and fabric and colour, and choosing inexpensive pieces combined with your own personality will mean you will soon have a house that everyone wants to visit – and no one ever wants to leave!
These are just some of the simple ways to add comfort to your home for you and your guests.
Don’t be scared to change thing within your home often. Having seasonal colors, throws and cushions are a great alternative to keep up with trends and refresh your home often.