18 ways to make your home cozy.


By Thumbtack Contributors

With cold weather setting in, homeowners have two choices: get grumpy about the impending freeze, or make their homes a cozy shelter. We know which one we’d choose.

Figuring out how to make your home cozy isn’t about simply turning up the thermostat and letting your heater do all the work. You should also use colors, textures, furniture, lighting, and more to add warmth and comfort to every room.

Here are a few project and design ideas to help you get started.

1. Give your entryway or foyer a new color palette or theme.

cozy entryway in cream and light colorsAs soon as you walk through the front door, create a sense of coziness by making a few tweaks. 

Pick a color palette (think: creams, beige, blues, greens, and other natural colors), or go for a cozy farmhouse theme. Add a few accessories that fit your theme and palette. For example, you can:

  • Add baskets or wall hooks to help keep the area clear of bulky winter gear. 
  • Place a cushion-y bench against the wall and lay a blanket and pillows on it. 
  • Get an entryway table or console in a natural wood color. Decorate it with candles, a lamp (with a dimmer), photos, and faux (or real) plants and flowers.
  • Add a floor lamp (instead of a table lamp) to create a warm, welcoming glow.

Related: 10 fall home decor ideas to embrace this autumn.

2. Build a nook.

nook in kitchenIf you have the space, add a nook in your kitchen or by your bedroom window. Find an open corner and install a bench or a comfy love seat, topped with a few pillows and your fluffiest blanket. In the kitchen, also add a small table and a few chairs for cozy social gatherings.

More tips: Even if you don’t have a space for a nook, you can still make your existing kitchen table and dining area cozier. Put new covers on your kitchen chairs. Incorporate your favorite warm colors in the placemats, napkin holders, and other table settings. And decorate your table and kitchen counters with vases full of your favorite fall or winter foliage. 

3. Experiment with textures and natural materials.

fur pillows and blankets on couchAdd some decadent throw blankets and pillows into your living space to make it easier to stay warm. A gorgeous wool or faux fur throw looks great in your space and makes curling up on the couch even more inviting. 

Looking for some additional furniture or other decor ideas for your living space? If you’re going for cozy, opt for wood and other warm natural materials like rattan, cork, or terracotta. These natural touches add texture that instantly warms up your living space. 

4. Splurge on an ultra-comfy (yet stylish) piece of furniture.

teardrop hanging lounge chair in living roomIf you’re not happy with your current couches or armchairs, treat yourself to a much more comfortable piece. Some popular styles include:

  • Teardrop hanging chairs
  • Velvet sofas, ottomans, or chairs
  • Leather couches and sofas
  • Sectional couches with a recliner

Take your time with this purchase. If possible, test out the pieces in stores before buying online.

Need help putting it all together? Hire a furniture assembly pro near you.

5. Make your fireplace a cozy focal point.

cozy fireplace with light color furnitureThere’s no doubt that curling up in front of a roaring fire is one of the best ways to create a cozy atmosphere in your home. Here are some ideas to incorporate this fall and winter:

  • Repaint it in a cozy color. Browse through different shades of gray, blue, and even white. 
  • Decorate the mantle with garland, plants, photos, string lights, pottery, or candles. 
  • Add comfy seating for two. Place a couch, loveseat, or chaise near your fireplace. Or, opt for stools or chairs instead. And add a throw pillow and blankets.
  • Place a table close to your seating area. Add coasters (for hot chocolate) or books to make the area more inviting.
  • Lay a rug underneath the furniture near your fireplace. Consider a darker color in case soot dirties up the area.

Reminder: Service your fireplace and chimney each year before you use it. An inspection can help prevent costly repairs and chimney fires.

6. Decorate your home like a cabin. 

living room cabin decor and designThere’s just something about a cabin that gives you all the warm, fuzzy feelings. In your home, you can create a cozy, cabin-like atmosphere by sticking to a warm color palette, soft lighting, and wood textures. If you don’t already have a chimney and fireplace, consider getting an electric one. 

When it comes to rugs, blankets, and furniture, go for thick, heavy, and rugged. Lean into woven fabrics, wool, or flannel. You may even want to include faux fur options as well. 

Give your home a makeover. Hire an interior designer near you.

7. Transform your home into a country cottage. 

country cottage kitchen designSimilar to cabin decor, a cottage design also gives off cozy vibes. Try these ideas to pull off a cottage look and feel:

  • Consider a white and brown color palette when painting, adding furniture, and choosing other decor elements. This will help you maintain a crisp, clean, and soft feel in your home. However, you can definitely incorporate other colors throughout the design to bring more life and vibrancy into your decor. We recommend incorporating blues, teals, yellows, pinks, and/or greens.
  • Find vintage, antique, or weathered furniture, including dining room tables, bookcases, and cupboardsYou can repurpose your old furniture to get that vintage cottage look. Just repaint and distress a few pieces.
  • Choose colorful, paisley patterns when picking out fabrics for furniture, rugs, curtains, bedspreads, and more.
  • Browse through your paneling options for your walls. Consider installing shiplap or tongue and groove panels for that classic cottage style.
  • Redo your cabinets to include beaded panel doors. You can DIY or hire a pro to refinish or reface your cabinets.
  • Install wall hooks in your kitchen to hang cups, utensils, and other tools. 

8. Create soft, warm glows in your rooms.

warm and soft glows in kitchenLighting plays a big role when creating a cozy home. Add in floor lamps, wall sconces, pendant lights, side table lamps, and other ambient or focused lighting techniques. This will help you create warm glows and more distinct, yet soft lighting states in different areas. 

9. Add cozy scents and soft lighting with candles.

candles in dark living roomWhen perfecting your lighting, don’t forget about candles. Choose a few in your favorite scent (vanilla, apple spice, lavender, woodsy, and other smells may give you a sense of coziness), and shop around for different candle holders that complement your home’s style.

Place your candles in areas where you plan to bundle up and relax, like your living room, bedroom, loft, or den. 

Related: 20 brilliant ways to brighten up your home.

10. Incorporate warm tones throughout your home.

warm tone cozy bedroom Whether you’re thinking about painting a wall or two in a few rooms or just searching for the perfect cover for your bed, you can’t go wrong by incorporating warm tones into your rooms. Check out options like:

  • Warm whites
  • Earth tones like terracotta and burnt umber
  • Bright jewel tones like red, orange, and goldenrod yellow

These color temperatures can evoke a feeling of warmth and help make your home even more inviting. 

11. Switch up your window treatments.

light colored living room with grey curtains Window treatments should really be considered seasonal decor. In the summer, opt for lighter linen curtains or white honeycomb blinds. In the winter, swap out these lightweight window coverings for heavier window treatments made from more substantial materials like velvet or brocade. These will help keep warm air in and cold air out. 

Need help? Hire a pro to install new window treatments.

12. Cover bare walls.

wall art above bed

Having large, bare walls in your rooms and hallways immediately makes your home feel cold and imposing. To combat this, hang up some paintings, mirrors, or family photos. Don’t overthink it; just choose pieces that you love. Regardless of your choice, wall art helps create a warm and inviting atmosphere and makes your home feel more settled. 

Here’s another idea for bare hallways: you can even install a few shelves or a bookcase so you can display candles, trinkets, picture frames, souvenirs from your travels, small statues, and other types of decor. 

13. Opt for large, soft rugs to cover cold floors.

warm colored bedroom with grey fluffy rug on floorBare feet on a cold floor is never a pleasant experience. To keep your feet warm and help your home stay cozy, add in area rugs on top of hardwood, laminate, tile, or marble flooring in key areas like your bedroom, living room, and hallways.

14. Bring more nature indoors.

potted plants in living roomSometimes, the unending cold and darkness of winter can feel demoralizing. To bring a touch of nature indoors, spend some time at a local garden center and buy a few new plants to green up your space. Whether you put a small grouping of succulents on your coffee table or invest in a huge fiddle-leaf fig, these plants will make your space feel cozier.

Or, instead of potted plants, opt for more seasonal greenery that you can hang and use more for decoration. Think: evergreen wreaths, holly sprigs, or magnolia garlands. Scattered throughout your home, these greens add a gorgeous smell and elegant look all winter long. 

15. Clean up your garden to ensure a more pleasant view. 

small cozy backyard garden with furnitureAs tempting as it is to skip it, taking care of a few fall chores ensures a tidy view that feels cozier to look at as the leaves (and snow) fall. 

So, take a few afternoons to clean up your garden during the fall. Depending on your setup, this may involve cutting back dead plants, adding protective mulch, or sweeping up fallen leaves. 

16. Cozy-up your porch, deck, or patio.

cozy outdoor living space on deck

Bring some of the same cozy techniques you used inside your home to outside your home. For example, if you have a porch, deck, patio, balcony, or terrace, make sure there’s plenty of comfortable seating by doing the following:

  • Replace stiff, uncomfortable wrought iron or plastic furniture with pieces that have plenty of cushions (don’t forget to also get outdoor covers for protection).
  • Consider adding lounge chairs, a chaise, or even one or two daybeds to encourage outdoor relaxation.
  • Add pillows, throw blankets, and outdoor rugs to keep warm on chilly nights.

17. Add heat sources to your outdoor living areas.

backyard lounge fire pitOnce you’ve created a cozy atmosphere inside, it's time to bring that feeling outdoors as well. Adding in outdoor heat sources is a great way to start. 

Heat lamps, outdoor fire pits, or portable fire tables are all great sources of warmth and add unbeatable ambiance to your front or back yard.

18. Make sure your home’s temperature remains warm and comfortable.

woman wrapping herself in blanket on couchA cold or chilly home is the opposite of warm and cozy. Our last piece of advice is to make sure you stay on top of your home maintenance tasks during this time of year and consider making a few upgrades as needed. 

For example, if you’re tired of waking up to a cold home but don’t want to run the heat all night, opt for a smart thermostat. These tech-enabled controls allow you to toggle your heat on and off remotely or on a set schedule to ensure you’re never waking up (or coming home) to a cold house.

Notice cold drafts in your home? All it takes is a little bit of caulk or weatherstripping material to make a huge difference. If you’re feeling a draft, check for cracks in your windows and doors. Then, seal them up. If you don’t know how to do this, a handyman or weatherization professional can help.

Related: 17 ways to stay warm (and stop wasting energy).

Find pros who can make your home cozier this season.

Now is a great time to take on house projects that will make your space cozier during the colder months. If you need assistance to supplement your DIY skills, download the Thumbtack app today, and find pros in your area who can help.

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