It’s time to bid farewell to summer and get ready for the lower temps and chilly winds. In many regions, as the weather gets cold, people spend more time indoors. Therefore, you’ll want to make sure your home is a warm and comfortable place. 

Preparing your home for winter doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg. By making a few changes, you can transform your home into a cozy haven for the winter. Here are five simple tips to minimize the cold sneaking in from the outdoors and maximize your comfort inside. 

1. Ensure Toasty Temps

Warm air can escape through gaps and cracks in doors and windows. Invest in weatherstripping and caulking to seal any gaps that can let in a draft. Pay attention to outdoor electrical outlets and exterior faucets, as they can let in the cold breeze as well.

Fall is the best time to check your heating system and make sure it’s functioning well. If you’re thinking of upgrading, consider installing a modern, energy-efficient AC and heating unit before the snow flies. An updated HVAC system will keep you comfortable year-round, while significantly reducing energy consumption — and your utility bills.

Another way to lower your bills is by augmenting your existing insulation, which may have settled over time or been inadequate to begin with. Insulating your attic, walls, and floors creates a thermal barrier that prevents warm air from escaping. Double curtains or thermal blinds will also help keep out the cold. Since they also block natural light — precious in the winter — you may want to draw or lower them only at night.

2. Let in Light

Speaking of natural light, take advantage of daytime sunshine to warm up — and brighten — your home for free. Open your curtains during the day to let the sun in, then close them at night to trap the heat. Keep your windows clean from the inside and out to make sure the light isn’t obstructed. If you can afford it, add a skylight or glass doors to maximize the sunlight in rooms. If not, you can add mirrors to reflect the sun’s cheering rays throughout your space.

The winter sun isn’t just good for aesthetics, it’s also therapeutic. Many people suffer from seasonal affective disorder due to the winter’s gloomy weather. When the sun shines, it can make them feel better. Bringing in the sunlight is also essential for indoor plants, which brighten up the room and your mood. 

3. Add Layers

You can convert the open, airy rooms of summer to warm, inviting retreats with some additional layering. Add warm rugs to bare floors, layer your beds with extra blankets, and add throws and cushions to the couch. This not only provides physical warmth, but makes everyone entering the room feel snug and cozy.

Soft, warm textiles lend your home an inviting vibe. Use fleece or knit throws on the couches, and add some floor cushions for a soft touch. In the bedroom, opt for flannel sheets and top the bed with a goose down duvet for extra warmth. Overstuffed pillows in decorative shams will encourage you to lean back against the headboard and read a good book. 

4. Decorate for Warmth

Both fabric and color can add to the sense of warmth in your home. Warm colors like reds, oranges, and yellows can create a sense of comfort even on the coldest day. You can mix and match decor items to create your own winter look, and don’t forget the walls. Swap out a summer seascape for a wall-hung quilt to make the room much cozier for winter.

To up the physical and aesthetic warmth of the room, light some candles. If you’re not comfortable with open flames, consider battery-operated candles or fairy lights, which are safer. Natural light on natural materials provides an organic warmth, so add wooden touches to the areas that get sunlight. Placing stacked birch logs near the window or pinecones on the table gives a warm and earthy touch. 

5. Focus on Fragrances

The trees may be bare outdoors, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have greenery indoors. Select plants and flowers according to your color palette or go for a nostalgic look with dried flower arrangements and potpourri. Instead of a regular vase, place the flowers in a tin bucket or vintage pitcher to add some fun. Scented candles are also a great way to infuse the room with winter fragrances of cinnamon or pine.

In the kitchen, the smell of baked goodies will fill the air with home-made comfort. Family members often gather in the kitchen for some hot soup or hot cocoa, so make them comfortable. Place plush cushions on the barstools or plump pillows on your banquette. Invest in an espresso maker so you can warm up with a macchiato or cappuccino after coming in from the cold. Not only does good java soothe you, but the smell of coffee adds a warm and earthy vibe to your kitchen. 

Turning Winter Into a Season You Look Forward To

Making an active effort to hygge-fy your home can have a significant impact on your winter experience. No matter what interior designers say, decorate your home the way you want, prioritizing comfort over style. Go with colors and fabrics that make you feel at ease as you curl up with your favorite book. Stay warm, stay safe, and enjoy the beauty of winter from the comfort of your snug and cozy home.