All things chic and cosy

All things chic and cosy

With the days still pretty dark and miserable for the next couple of months it’s time to ensure that your home is as warm and welcoming as possible. After all when the day is done there’s nothing better than closing the door on the hectic world – and inclement weather – and settling into a snug home. Just the thought of digging your toes into a luxurious deep pile rug or cosying up on a welcoming sofa with flickering candles and a warm, gentle glow from the fireplace is sure to make that wait at the station, or hectic day at work, a lot easier to deal with.

But what if your home exudes about as much warmth and convivial spirit as the North Pole? Then it’s time to start layering it with warmth and love. Why? Because our homes should act as a sanctuary from the stress and strife of life. And although you might have all the practical elements in place such as seating, a rug and lighting, without those all-important finishing touches such as ambient illumination, vases of fresh or faux florals and lots of textural accessories in sheepskin, velvet or chunky knits to avoid anything looking cold and sterile.

If you have a fireplace that’s fully operational then that’s a huge bonus as there’s nothing like the crackle of a real fire or glowing embers of a wood burner to instantly inject some heat, quite literally, into a room.

But if this is not an option then clusters of candles or lanterns are a good inexpensive alternative. Indeed placing little votives about the place, on table tops, a mantelpiece and shelving is another simple trick to give a room a soothing and inviting aura.

If it’s time for a revamp on your décor then why not embrace the dark arts of using inkier tones on either accent accessories or if you’re feeling bold how about splashing some on your walls?  Deep greens and blues and rich ochres and greys are all very popular choices right now and certainly help to conjure up a cocooning and dramatic effect. Ensure you do your research though by using  few tester pots to get the right shade for your space and be careful that it works as well as it does in daylight as it does in that dappled evening glow created by candlelight.

It’s a good idea to stick to a certain colour scheme to avoid overkill or headache inducing clashing. So for example, as this beautiful Amara shot shows, you can work pops of deep purple with charcoal, a little smattering of gilt and oatmeal which will keep things feeling on the right side of dramatic and not dirgeful.

For instant inspiration for your decorating project head to the brilliant HomeSense for a wealth of unique pieces that will give your space a stylish stamp without costing a fortune. And don’t forget the inexpensive home ranges at Matalan, Sainsbury’s and Dunelm.

These are all great interiors treasure troves where you’ll find all your heart – and home – desires for incredible prices. Stock up on photo frames, rugs, atmospheric lighting and candles and your abode will pay you back with the very warmest of welcomes!

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