Houses are not just for looking at; they’re for living in. And a truly cosy house – one that meets your needs well, and invites visitors in – will be beautiful as well. If you, too, crave something warm and homey, here are a few ideas for getting the look that says: "Come in. Stay a while."
1. Look for furniture that is ‘curl-upabble’.
There’s often a bit of a gap between furniture that is lovely to look upon, and furniture that is lovely to sit upon. Ideally, the perfect sofa would strike a balance between the two. But if you’re truly dedicated to cosiness, before purchasing anything designed for sitting, you must consider its curl-uppability. "Can I see myself curled up on this sofa of a Sunday afternoon, feet sunk deep in the cushions, reading a book and drinking tea?" If the answer is no – keep looking.
2. Mix it up a little.
"Don’t buy all your furniture from one store," the old adage goes, "unless you want your house to look like a furniture store." Furniture stores are lovely, but they are not inviting. To get away from the show-house look, mix together pieces from different styles. When considering things together, think less about what "matches" and more about what "goes". Mixing dissimilar pieces creates visual texture, which will make any space more inviting and more cosy.
3. Fill your house with things you would want to touch.
An old leather chair, a worn wood table, a fluffy throw, a patterned rug – items with lots of texture, that are interesting to touch and hold, add warmth to a room.
4. Use warm colours.
Every colour has a "mood". Cooler colours make a space feel larger and airier. Warm colours do the opposite – they make a space feel smaller and cosier. Every colour, even whites and blacks, can have cool or warm undertones.
5. Lighting, lighting, lighting.
One of the most important factors in how a room looks is something most people usually don’t even think about: light. It’s especially important in a living room to have multiple light sources – brighter ones for larger gatherings, smaller ones for more intimate gatherings or a night in. Table lamps bring lighting down to a human level and give big rooms a sense of scale.
6. Switch ‘cool’ light bulbs for ‘warm’ ones.
Tiny investment, minimal work, nearly instant cosification.
7. Live with the things you love.
Put together a collection of the things you love, wether it be a stack of books. The old rotary phone from your grandmother’s house. The license plate from your first car. All these things will make your house feel like a home because they will remind you of the people and things you love. When you are at home, it should feel like it is the place where you truly belong. And that’s the whole idea of cosiness – that rooms are made for people.