As we start to pull out our woolies and socks and shutting out the cold of the winter nights we can also create a warm and welcoming home through adapting our decoration and furniture layout, essentially creating our winter ‘home wardrobe’. One of the most obvious ways to do this is through colour.
All colours are associated with a temperature of cool/cold or warm/hot and this can be used to psychologically make your home feel warmer.
By using colours on the warm side of the colour wheel you instantly raise the perceived temperature of the room.
They have proven that reds and oranges for example increase our heart rate and blood flow, explaining why you actually feel physically warmer.
You often hear experts on TV shows telling you to repaint your space in a warm colour, great but in reality who is going to change your wall colour scheme every season.
So how do you do it?
Easy using these 10 tips.
- Use accessories and textures such as cushions, throws, rugs and artwork. Rich tones such as gold, mocha and brown create an instant warming effect.
- It is not uncommon for people to have several quilt covers, if this is you than change it to a thicker, textured cover in warmer tones such as your pinks and mauves or any colour on the warm side of the colour wheel. Anything with bulk adds to the perceived warmth.
- Add layers of blankets and cushions in all your bedrooms. Adding a faux fur throw on the end of the bed makes you want to curl up with a good book and cup of hot chocolate especially on a cold and rainy Sunday afternoon.
- If you are in the process of replacing window treatments don’t go past lined curtains, they are the best and cheapest form of climate control available and great for both winter and summer. Winter for keeping the heat in and keeping it out in summer.
- The new trend towards copper such as pendants, vases, platters etc work well and can be an inexpensive way of creating the cosy effect.
- Add mood lighting by using floor lamps, table lamps or wall lights. Change the globe from a cool white to a warm white, though a word of warning here, it may change the colour of some rooms so do a trial with one light first before replacing all globes in this way.
- Look for inspiration outside your window and bring the beautiful winter leaves inside by placing them on the dining room table, putting them in a bowl or even a vase. Combined with spicy fragrant candles, an instant injection of warming colours to your home.
- Have a fireplace, reposition your furniture to face the fire and centre on the hearth, complete with extra cushions and throws. This with a fluffy rug and a stack of freshly cut wood has you set for the night.
- Just because the temperature has dropped does not mean we have to abandon our outdoor rooms. The same principles apply to this room as it does to the indoors, however we do need to create a barrier from wind and rain. To do this, clear café blinds are invaluable. Strategically placed they can cut out the winter chill yet create the feeling you are still out doors.
- Another option is the outdoor heater, such as the gas ones you often see in cafés or even an outdoor fireplace or fire pit.
Fireplaces – love them or hate them
Environmentalists will say they are bad for the environment due to emissions, those who live a very cold climate or a very cold house will say they are a god send as they are the most luxurious and comforting type of heat available. The heat is not suffocating, they heat the flooring and furnishings, and it is a truly luxurious feel.
There is nothing more mesmerizing than watching a burning fire and even the smell creates a sense of cosines and safety.
The downside is having to chop wood and kindling, though you can actually order wood to be delivered in small or large sizes and finding the space to store the wood to keep dry. The cleaning of the fireplace is no real issue and you can even have a chimney sweep in yearly to ensure the flue is clean and safe.
So what can you do if you are concerned for the environment and the use of timber as the fire source?
You can use a pellet heater. These heaters have a lower carbon output than gas or wood, and the pellets are made from sawdust waste/shavings compressed together and held together by lignin which is naturally occurring in sawdust. The pellets are easy to store and burn very efficiently with a thermostat to control the heat output.
For more information on heating solutions this winter click here.