“The idea of coming home to this sounds pretty dang fantastic.”
Let’s be real: who doesn’t want a cozy home? Who wouldn’t want a super relaxing place to come back to at the end of the day?
I know I do!
And if you’ve clicked on this post, chances are you do too.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: what we surround ourselves with matters.
Our homes are where many of us spend the majority of our time. It’s the first place that influences us in the morning and the last place to do so at night. Shouldn’t that place be a positive influence?
My interest in home decor truly began when I moved into my first apartment. I went straight from college classes to an extremely stressful and demanding job, and all I wanted at the end of my shift was to retreat into a cozy safe-haven.
Imagine you walk in the front door after a long day of work. First you take off your shoes and slip on a pair of fluffy slippers. Then you cross the room and sink into a cushioned couch, snuggling up in a pile of soft throw blankets and warm-colored throw pillows. Finally, you light a scented candle on the coffee table next to you and inhale the sweet smell of baking cookies…
While maybe a little too perfect, you get the idea. The idea of coming home to this sounds pretty dang fantastic.
To sum it up, a lot of these things can be encompassed under the Danish notion of hygge, or the feeling of contentment you get by appreciating the little things in life. Hygge, which I finally learned not long ago is pronounced “hoo-ga” not “higg-ie”, also applies to other non-material things, but it proves that people all across the world recognize the importance of cozy little home items. Speaking of, is this not the cutest little sign?
Is there a catch?
Now, making your home cozy is easier said than done when you’re a broke adulting newbie. But the beauty of the tips I’m going to share with you is that these are things you can implement even without a lot of spare cash. And they’re good things to keep in mind as you slowly build up your collection of furniture and decor.
Even if you’ve already established your home decor theme, there are a lot of little ways you can tweak your home set-up to make it even cozier.
This is one of my favorite topics, which is why I’ve spent so much time learning about it. Keep reading to get my tips!
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Let’s start with a quiz
Don’t worry! It’s not a hard one.
I’m going to show you a few pictures, and I want you to think about what they have in common. What gives them that super cozy vibe?
Let’s see if we picked up on the same things!
Here’s How to Make Your Home Cozy:
All of pictures above have a warm, as opposed to cool, tone. And warm tones can make all the difference when creating a cozy space. Consider these two photos:
Which one looks more cozy and inviting? While the cool lighting in the second photo is still very beautiful, the glow of the first gives the impression that the sun is literally providing the light. It makes the photo pleasant and cheerful. Personally, I’d rather be sitting with the lady in the first one.
The best thing is this is really easy to do.
Focus on the lighting around your home. Make sure you have plenty of lamps to light your space. The shades need to be light colored.
Then select the proper lightbulbs. The lower the Kelvins, the warmer the light will be. I’d recommend purchasing a 3600 K lightbulb, which will give out that nice warm lighting. If you’d like to go for a little brighter, 5600 K is considered daylight lighting. An LED bulb will also be a little brighter than a fluorescent or incandescent bulb. LEDs are better in general because they use a lot less energy (aka better for the environment) and they last a lot longer.
- Love love love this Leanne Ford limited edition gold floor lamp
- Candles are also great for brightening up a space, like this candle from the Hearth and Hand Magnolia collection
Light, Earthy Colors
The three photos also show light, natural colors. While black, gray, and dark brown may all be earthy-toned and can be used in small amounts, they drain a room of that friendly, inviting feeling when they’re the main colors.
It’s for that reason that I instantly have vetoed perfectly fine apartments in the past. If they have dark cabinets or gray walls, I’ll feel like all the warm, cozy energy has been zapped from the space.
Opt instead for whites, beiges, and tans. Golds and coppers make excellent accents too.
- I’m all about this light but unique vase
- And in my opinion, this tray is the perfect combination of cozy colors
- This small wooden crate is a beautiful, earthy accent to a row of flowers
All of these cozy rooms also have soft textures in the form of blankets, pillows, or cushioned couches. Personally I can’t sit on a couch without looking around for a blanket to pull over me; it’s an instant boost of comfort.
For every seat option in your home, make sure there is a comfy element to it. Whether it’s a squashy couch, a firm recliner with a fluffy pillow, or a wooden chair with a blanket draped across the back, there are so many ways to diversify your textures. And don’t forget, you can add textures with rugs as well!
You can absolutely still make the space your own AND include some cozy additions.
- I would gladly snuggle up with this microplush blanket
- Believe it or not, I actually have this fuzzy blanket wrapped around me right now!
- I LOVE sweater knit blankets. The sour cream/hot coffee colored one…? (I almost said flavor…that would be gross! Haha). Anyhow, that one’s my favorite!
- Can’t forget the faux fur pillows. I’m loving these Project 62 collection color options.
- This area rug is the perfect way to soften and cozy-up a space. Though I’d be wary of buying it if you have dogs who get things messy fast.
Other things you can add…
Pictures of Family and Friends
Adding pictures of family and friends is another way to make the space your own. As I’m currently living far from family, I love putting pictures around my living space so I can feel like they’re much closer.
One thing I want to try this year is making a physical vision board or collage. Kind of like an adult arts and crafts project, some people put quotes or just pictures of things that make them content. You can also just put up pictures around your home. Select pleasant photos or paintings that make you feel comforted.
Here are a few I love on Etsy:
- Bright and warm cottage painting by BeeGlass
- Simple but beautiful flower painting by ElizaAndersonArt
- No surprise here, this coffee painting by ThomasXieFineArt
- Quaint and cozy cafe photograph by DeepLightPhotography
Having living things in your home is probably the biggest part of making a space more positive. When I started decorating my own spaces in college, I quickly learned that having a plant makes all the difference. It can be hard staying indoors while you work on a computer or do your chores, but having a plant inside is like bringing a bit of the outdoors in with you. I love getting something green that doesn’t need a lot of sunlight for the indoors. While I’m not a big fan of buying real flowers that often (dude, they’re expensive!) I’ve found that even fake ones can really liven up a space. Year round, I have a vase of fake flowers on my kitchen table.
- I’m in love with this faux eucalyptus bundle
- This potted plant has the best reviews I’ve ever seen for an artificial plant
And speaking of living things, pets make a space so much homier too. As I type, I have a dog lying next to me on the couch and a cat sleeping across the room. They make the space feel even more like a home.
Other ways to make your home more relaxing…
Set It Up for Convenience and Storage
Maybe this is more of a #adulting tip, but my goodness why do I sometimes make life so hard on myself?
I often come across ways I could make things more convenient and wonder why I haven’t done that forever. Find a stylish way to put the Keurig pods by the Keurig machine (not hidden in the pantry for grumpy morning digging), put an extra roll of paper towels under the bathroom sink for easy grab-and-wipe cleaning (not solely in the kitchen), and get a big enough organizer to throw your important papers into (so papers don’t end up in ten different spots).
There must be so many more tips out there I’ve yet to discover but holy crap – I often make life so much more difficult than it needs to be. Minimizing these little stressors will help make your days go smoother, make you more productive, and boost your mood.
Keep It Clean/Practice Minimalism
It’s no new concept that having a clean home improves mood and comfort. When I have a long list of chores lined up – laundry, dishes, clean out fridge, take out trash, etc. – I feel too overwhelmed to even start. And of course, having lots of clutter makes your space much less inviting and even gives some people anxiety. That’s not at all cozy.
I’ve learned a lot about minimalism over the last year and have started to incorporate it into my life. By refraining from buying unnecessary things, getting rid of old clothes, and tossing out old knick-knacks (seriously, when did I become such a hoarder??), I’ve slowly begun to lighten my living space. Even just a little bit goes a long way. Make a schedule for cleaning and tackle a new de-cluttering project every week. Your life will be peachy!
So those are my tips for making your home a peaceful and restful spot! Truly, having a cozy home is not something to overlook. When you have a place that regularly prompts those warm and fuzzy feelings – both literally and figuratively – it does wonders for your mental wellness.
Just think about having dry skin in the winter and how much it makes you cringe to touch a tissue. But when you take the time to exfoliate and nourish your skin with a moisturizer, you no longer have that cringe-inducing feeling multiple times a day. Just like your hands, you should nourish your home with a cozy set-up so it can comfort you in return. A little cheesy, I know. But it works, doesn’t it?
So take a moment to think about your home set-up! See if there are any ways you can make it more cozy so it provides you with your well-deserved rest and relaxation.
Thanks so much for reading! If you liked this post I’d love if you’d share it on Pinterest or Facebook!