Being confined to our homes is a concept we’ve had to become accustomed to in the past couple of years. Nowadays, restrictions are largely a thing of the past and we are again able to venture outside. A focus on creating a cosy living space is something that should still be at the forefront of our minds, aiming to receive a metaphorical hug from your cosy house every evening. Feeling safe and relaxed in your home is an important aspect of a person’s wellbeing, so getting it right is crucial.
Pronounced “hoo-gah”, hygge is a Danish concept that can’t be translated to a single word, but used to describe a warm atmosphere, the feeling of cosy serenity and discussing all things in life with those you’re closest to. Hygge is a defining part of Danish culture that can be applied anywhere. This could explain why Danes are always at the top of the happiest people in the world, coming second in 2022. Here in the UK, we’ve been aware of the hygge trend for some years and welcome it with open arms. There is so much that can be taken from the hygge lifestyle to create a cosy environment and all the points spoken about contain hygge-like qualities.
Light up your Home
The lighting in a room plays a massive role, contributing to how you and your guests feel, with a variety of options ranging from the colour to the size. With so many choices available it can be tricky finding the best combinations to create a cosy home. However, a couple simple rules and ideas can have you illuminating your homes in such a warm way that you’ll never want to leave.
Add a bohemian style feel to your room with string lights, also known as accent or ambient lights. A superb way to make you feel at peace as well as bring joy, string lights create a delightful atmosphere that will make any evening that extra bit snug. Easy to relocate, string lights are worth picking up as they can be transferred from room to room until you find a space that fits perfectly.
Measured in kelvin, the colour temperature of your bulbs is integral in what mood you’re trying to portray. For example, you will need different temperatures of lighting for your bedroom compared to a home office. Soft white (2,700-3,000 kelvin) gives a warm and pleasant feel that is perfect for living rooms or bedrooms. Swap out your cold lighting that make your kitchen feel like an interrogation room for warm, friendly bulbs that hug you until the sun rises again.
Being able to alter the colour of your lighting with just one press of a button is both fun and has benefits for your health and wellbeing. Each hue of colour changing lightbulbs give your room a differing feel, making them a versatile lighting option. Purple is great for creativity and productivity with green reducing stress levels, ideal for meditation and orange helps with your sleep.
Be Creative with Texture
From cosy blankets to shag rugs, there are plenty of choices that add a variety of textures to your home that creates a warm and desirable environment. You can be incredibly experimental, mixing smooth and rough textures throughout. Try merging contrasting fabrics and designs in a way that suits you and your living space.
Hardwood and laminate flooring can get chilly during the cooler seasons, so investing in a rug guarantees a cosy feel under your feet. Don’t be afraid to use rugs in bathrooms and kitchens with a variety of styles available that’s sure to add a great deal of character to your home. Don’t completely discount the possibility of adding a rug on top of a carpet, just ensure you choose a colour scheme that matches.
Walls consume a large area of every home and are incredibly visible but are often forgotten about when it comes to texture. One of the easiest ways to do this is through textured paint, whether that be real or faux texture. This can bring a calming tone that adds a great deal of character to a room, however too much and it will have the opposite effect.
You are highly likely to come into physical contact with the furniture in your home, meaning the texture you opt for is essential. However, it isn’t just the tangible nature of furniture that you should be considering, with the visual texture a big factor in how the room feels. Blending multiple textiles within a single space is where textures really begin to shine with opposites most definitely attracting. As an example, plush furnishings go well with hardwood floors, creating depth and adding charm to a space.
Get in Touch with Nature
Adding greenery to multiple rooms in your home creates a welcoming atmosphere that you or your guests won’t want to leave. Giving you a more optimistic outlook on your life, plants provide a pleasing visual stimulation that helps you feel safe and relaxed. Studies have shown that indoor plants can improve productivity, reduce stress, absorb toxins and be therapeutic to care for. Lavender is the most beneficial plant for anxiety and depression. There are multiple ways to utilise lavenders health benefits including relaxing both the body and mind by adding it to a bath or inserting in a spray bottle with water and applying it to dry or irritated skin.
Plants can provide a real punch of character that brightens up a room. Incorporating a variety of textures and shapes within a space keeps your display interesting and vibrant. Try placing a spiky cactus near a curvy Ficus Robusta plant to create an enthralling lay out. There are numerous ways to show off your plants, whether that be via shelving, hanging from the ceiling or wall, on a bar cart or simply on the floor.
If you want the appearance and wellbeing benefits offered by plants but lack the time or money; why not add fake greenery to your décor. Incredibly easy to maintain, artificial foliage always stay the same size and won’t die. There are no limitations when creating an artificial floral aesthetic as you don’t have to consider the environment that it will require to flourish. For example, plants such as geraniums and aloe vera require direct sunlight to thrive. This means you’re required to prioritise the health of a plant over how visually appealing it will be in your home.
The greens, pinks, and other vibrant colours you tend to see on plants stand out and work excellently when placed in front of a white wall. Plants don’t require a bold backdrop, just a solid one, with a white heavy palette laying the foundation for a fusion that has swept over many homes across the globe.
Fragrances effect people’s mood, behaviour, and performance in a variety of ways by playing off our past experiences and associating it with a particular event or scenario. Scents such as baked goods, books and coffee all create a positive feeling amongst many. Taking them back to their childhood or simply to something they regularly enjoy. For people who smoke, own pets, or regularly cook, unwanted smells are going to be a part of the home whether you like it or not. However, combatting these aromas allows you to create a home you’ll want to stay in forever.
The first thing you should do when attempting to improve the smell of your house is to go through your fridge. Thoroughly clean and remove any out-of-date items, throwing them in the bin and then proceeding to take your rubbish out. Once you’ve done this, throw some homemade baked good into your oven to create a soothing scent that will warm you to the core, almost as much as the sweet treats will.
An incredibly effortless way of fashioning a citrusy smell anywhere in your home is simply by slicing a lemon in half and leaving it cut-side-up in the location you require. Lemon, lime, orange, and bergamot all function brilliantly in leaving you with fresh and bright aromas all throughout.
Going through each room individually and deciding on a specific fragrance for your home can give you a completely new outlook on scenting your home. It is important to avoid clashing two powerful odours in adjacent rooms. Regarding the living room, scents such as amber, ginger and cardamom are great for adding warmth and cosiness which is ideal for a space that you spend a large quantity of family time in. For the bedroom, sandalwood has a rich, earthy scent with an ancient history of use for relaxation which helps you to unwind and fall asleep easier. To fashion a spa-like experience in your own bathroom, opt for ginger, peppermint, or eucalyptus, helping to create a relaxing environment. Lemon, cinnamon, and rosemary can improve productivity and clear thinking which makes them ideal for use in a home office.
Perfect your Colour Palette
The influence of a rooms colour scheme has on the ambience of a certain space can’t be understated, impacting heavily on the mood and energy. Each room has differing functions and requirements meaning the colour configuration must be thought out and specific to the environment around it. However, creating a cohesive palette that flows throughout your home provides a more considered and harmonious appearance, preventing a disjointed look.
To fashion a cosy surrounding it’s best to use warm tones such as orange, red and yellow, all with a variety of shades available. Aesthetically speaking, warm colours look as though they come closer, which creates more of a snug space. Stimulating ideas of sunlight and love, these colours can evoke feelings of passion and playfulness that work to create an incredibly pleasant room. Terracotta and brown are also ideal for creating cosy and intimate environments, especially in larger bedrooms.
It is important to have balance within your colour temperatures, not siding with just the one tone. If you desire a cosy space then use warm colours for sure, but also add a few elements that incorporate cool colours. It’s all about having balance and contrast within a room; firstly, deciding on the mood you want to create, then experimenting with different colour schemes until you find one that you love.
Forming a cosy and relaxing home that’s fit for all occupants throughout the day is very achievable, especially if you follow the above ideas. The most important advice, however, is to make it yours. Put up pictures of you and your loved ones, adding furniture or aesthetics that you personally love and want to be surrounded by every day. Each person’s definition of cosy alters somewhat, meaning that there’s not a direct formula or blueprint. But following these steps, you’re sure to be on the right path towards a home filled with heart that you’re proud of.