Warm & Cozy Home Decorating Ideas

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5. Carve Out Quiet Spaces

While creating gathering spots is important, it is equally vital to set aside quiet zones where family members can find solitude. A comfortable armchair in the corner of a bedroom is all you need or, if you're more ambitious, you can put in a window seat or turn a nook into a sitting area -- just make sure it's a spot far from everyday foot traffic.

6. Coordinate with Color

Using warm color is one of the most effective ways to make a home feel welcoming, though a mishmash of overly brash tones can have just the opposite effect. To ensure a peaceful color scheme, limit the palette to just two or three soothing colors that work well together. Painting the walls is the most obvious way to add splashes of color, but if that's not an option, infuse hues with upholstery, window treatments, artwork, and rugs.

7. Sweat the Small Stuff

When it comes to cozying up your space, do focus on the details. Don't ignore small or out-of-the-way surfaces, such as side tables or consoles -- use every spot as an opportunity to enhance your home's personality by adorning it with framed photos, favorite treasures, and knickknacks.

8. Go for Touchable Textures

Diminish any hard edges in your home with layers of plush fabrics. Look for knit throws and pillows in sumptuous materials such as chenille, velvet, and cashmere blends. Area rugs are soft underfoot and instantly warm up a space, and curtains or fabric Roman shades will camouflage a room's harder architectural edges.

9. Soothe the Senses

Of course you want your room to look beautiful, but don't forget to please all the senses, including hearing and smell. Having several music sources throughout the house, such as MP3-player speakers or portable CD players, will ensure soothing sounds wherever you go. Use aromatic reed diffusers and room sprays, as well as fresh flowers and plants, to give your home a welcoming signature scent.


Originally published in Ladies' Home Journal, February 2007.


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