By Kaitlin Krull / www.modernize.com
After the excitement and busyness of the holiday season has finished and the decorations have been put away, it’s hard to focus on much more than the snow falling silently outside. If the harsh Canadian winter leaves you feeling cold and anything but cozy, never fear, because we have come up with some surefire ways to make your living room warm on even the coldest winter days.
If your home has an electric, gas, or wood burning fire, make the most of it during the winter months. Bring in a professional to clean out your chimney at the end of autumn and you will be safely ready to go once the snow starts. Once you learn how to use and maintain it properly, your fireplace will give off tons of heat and make your living room a haven from the storm.
If you want soft, warm lighting but don’t have a fireplace, candles are the perfect alternative. Place pillars of varying sizes on the mantel, in decommissioned fireplaces, on window sills, and anywhere else you can think of to give the illusion of warmth through light. Just make sure to keep children and flammables away from the flames, and don’t forget to extinguish them before bedtime!
Give your furniture an instant winter makeover with warm, inviting colors throughout the room. Throws, cushions, and even a DIY upholstery recover will transform your living space into a cozy retreat. As far as the type of fabric concerned, at Modernize we love chunky knits, fleeces, and faux furs that accentuate the season’s trends and provide maximum warmth.
Keep your living room stocked with all your favorite things to help encourage you to snuggle up under a blanket with loved ones. Stack a few magazines on the coffee table, fill your bookshelves with classics, keep snacks at the ready, and fire up Netflix for a night in away from the cold.
If your living room has hardwood floors, you can literally warm up your living space with a rug. Choose a high pile, shaggy area rug or a bold pattern to create a talking piece and add some creativity to the room (bonus points for natural fibres such as bamboo, jute, and wool).
Even if virtually everything is dead or covered in snow outside, life continues in your home. Show it off with a few leafy green plants or flower bouquets. If you choose carefully, your living room greenery can also freshen the air inside your home, which is good news for those of us who can’t open the windows in the house for six months out of the year.
If you’re not green fingered but still want to add some color to your winter living room, go bold in other ways. Bright decor and one or two statement pieces accented on neutral walls will give a pop of color and energy to an otherwise dark and tired room. This is particularly useful in the winter months, when white is the only color most of us see.
Whenever the sun comes out during the winter, take full advantage by opening your curtains or blinds in order to let the light in. If you’ve decorated your living space with white or neutral walls, your room will feel even brighter than other spaces because light bounces off light surfaces. Brightness is just about as good as warmth, so take what you can get by maximising the light in your living room.