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How to create a warm and cosy home

(20 Posts)
BendydickCuminsnatch Thu 11-Jul-19 10:31:39

I don’t know if it’s just the house itself or something I’m doing but I really struggle to create a nice warm atmosphere to our home. It’s a standard 3 bed semi, maybe 1970s or something.

We have a 4 and 1 year old who I’m trying to teach to tidy up but there’s always crumbs all over the floor etc. We have laminate downstairs except for the living room, so that’s not very cosy. We have a big fluffy rug in the playroom which is nice, maybe I should get a rug for the dining room.

I’ve been decluttering for my own sanity and stress levels, but the less stuff we have the colder the house feels. I took a lot of (years old) kids artwork down from the walls because it looked so cluttered, but not it looks so stark.

I want candles but can’t really light them around the 1 year old (he’s a climber) and a big Swiss cheese plant but I’d most likely kill it. What I REALLY think will help make the house feel lovely and homey is a cat but DH is very against the idea sad

The living room is a very awkward shape and I’ve recently redecorates and am trying to keep it nice but it’s the first room by the front door and children dump shoes, bags, toys etc in there so it’s constantly got stuff on the floor aaaagh. We’re hoping to get a porch so that might help!

Anyway what are your top tips for a cosy home? My family home growing up was certainly not decluttered or tidy but still felt so warm (we had cats!!!). Maybe that’s nostalgia playing a part too though.

OP’s posts: |
PartridgeJoan Thu 11-Jul-19 10:47:44

We're having a similar problem having moved house somewhere bigger and also have been decluttering.

Look at 'hygge' on Pinterest, Instagram etc which may give you some ideas. We have some fake flowers, acorns, candles (never lit due to baby, we have electric candles inside).

Lots of cushions, blankets draped on the sofas, a nice rug. We framed our posters before putting them up, which is neat but also cosy. I find it's much harder to do when you're trying to battle clutter at the same time!

Wicker baskets (could have one for the shoes?), nice lamps also help

PartridgeJoan Thu 11-Jul-19 10:50:16

I've also read that the entrance to the home is one of the most important parts for setting the tone as it's the first thing you see. We've stuck some coat hooks on the wall and I'm constantly putting away any additional coats in the wardrobe which isn't practical but makes it look nicer!

Also what about scents? Could put some diffusers around

BendydickCuminsnatch Thu 11-Jul-19 10:58:35

SCENTS. Yes I think that’s probably a big thing. Reed diffuser things or is that naff?

We have many a wicker basket but they just look rubbish and end up with toys lost in them. Also too many blankets and cushions which just get put onto the floor haha aaaaagghhh

OP’s posts: |
AbsolCatly Sat 13-Jul-19 07:25:46

Warm colours, soft rug (but not in the dining room), bookshelves, things you love on display.

Do crafts with the kids and have painted stones /pine cone ppl etc for changing points of interest

Electric candles or if you have a fireplace candles behind the fire guard

I think my living room cosy and (can be) tidy - it has books, storage for toys, salt lamp and candles in the non working fireplace, cushions on the sofa, a rocking chair covered with a sheepskin throw, fluffy stool and a rather battered coffee table that is used for pizza night / crafts/ games

dudsville Sat 13-Jul-19 07:34:23

The thing that makes a house look and feel warm and cozy is how you live in it. The mistake with hygge is taking it out of context and thinking of it solely as design. The Danes smirk at us for doing this (and yes I have this on good authority). Removing your children's pics because they looked cluttered, in my opinion, was a mistake. Put them up! They provide a sense of vibrancy, creativity, life and stress probably colourful. They would look amazing against a nice background of muted colours and make your children feel proud (happy family, warm home).

BendydickCuminsnatch Tue 16-Jul-19 08:42:11

Sorry missed these last 2 responses, thanks very much.

We have done pretty much everything AbsolCatly mentioned, not trying to be dismissive, but everything just ends up so dusty etc. I’ve just got rid of sheepskin rug because I was always having to hoover it (because it got crumbs in it and always ended up on the floor) which is a tricky job because it’s so small it just gets sucked up, more trouble than it’s worth. I’ve also just taken down 3 shelves in the living room because they were just receptacles for crap eg DH’s bloody cables, unused vouchers, battery chargers, boxes of photos. My friend’s have lovely curated shelves but I just don’t seem to be able to manage it 😄😩

I agree re the art work dudsville! Planning to put some new stuff up (a lot of it was autumn/winter-y!) but not got round to it.

I could just get the kids to only eat at the table but that’s not very homey and welcoming is it. And also guarantee things would still get crumby and sticky. Maybe I won’t be able to have nice things until they’re older 😄

Going to get frames for some prints I have, electric candles a good idea, and some scenty things and see if I feel a bit better.

OP’s posts: |
deplorabelle Tue 23-Jul-19 21:12:44

I think you should be brave and get some plants. They can transform a space and improve indoor air quality. Buy cheap, long-suffering plants like spider plants or peace lilies. Get a couple and group them together. Mulch the compost with some decorative pebbles which stops the water evaporating too fast and looks really nice.

Girlintheframe Wed 24-Jul-19 06:13:00

Try blooming artificial. I've just bought an artificial plant from them and it looks fantastic! You would honestly never know it isint real!
Our home is quite dark which makes real plants a bit tricky

GingerKittenHuman Wed 24-Jul-19 06:32:20

It helps to have places to shove the daily detritus. So keep your shelves but have a nice basket or box on there where the receipts etc can be dumped.

Consider a shoe cabinet or shelves. Have a look on Ikea. We have one in white with sliding doors.

Make use of vertical space and get stuff off the floor. Ime, stuff on the floor makes a place look untidy. So you could get a ladder style holder and put your blankets on that.

Get some baskets or similar to put inside any drawers so you can section it off. I got some great clear plastic ones from Poundland that were labelled as fridge storage.

Battery operated candles, artificial plants and lots of different textures help cosy up a place.

And look on Instagram and Pinterest for inspo.

Bluesheep8 Mon 29-Jul-19 09:15:17

Battery operated candles and faux flowers

user12398798768657 Mon 29-Jul-19 09:35:33

Your children need to eat only at the table IMO. Its teaching them good manners and it will stop your crumb problem. Eating in front of the tv/on the floor is not making your home look cosy.

And cats will not solve your problem unless your idea of cosy is cat hair/sick/furballs.. (I speak as a cat and dog owner).

1. Put back your sheepskin rugs. The key is texture and depth and you need this, particularly if you have laminate floors. You just need to hoover them each evening/morning (although not as frequently if you make the DC eat at the table wink)

2. Put your cushions on the sofas not on the floor

3. Place your throws over the arms of sofas/backs of sofas etc.

4. get a big cheeseplant. They are expensive but really easy. I had one for my birthday and it just needs a water every couple of weeks.

5. Place folded throw over the top of the junk in your baskets. nobody will know theyre full of kids toys and not other throws.

6. Put some led candles in lanterns and nobody will look closely enough to see they are not real.

7. Fresh flowers/flowering pot plants make a massive difference

8. Lamp lighting not overhead lighting. If you have to use overhead lighting put it on a dimmer switch.

9. Thick heavy lined curtains in a luxurious fabric

10. trawl ebay for some large paintings that match your colour scheme.

11. A couple of nice family photos on shelves in nice frames (not on walls - my pet hate unless its a full photo wall)

12. Mirror to reflect light in the day and to pick up candle light and lam light in the evenings.

Charging drawer (literally a drawer in a cupboard with an extension cable in it) so that dh puts his electronic stuff in there to charge and out of the way.

Coffee table (protect the corners whilst Dc are little) with a few non breakable bits on (arranged on a small tray) and a couple of books that you can dip in and out of.

Lindormilk Tue 30-Jul-19 08:38:13

You need to use the kitchen to eat. My kids never ate in the living room.

Candles are great, surely you can light them once the kids are in bed?

Soft blankets, lamps, no fake flowers as they are just that. Fake, and look fake and are dust magnets.

How about light decorations? I got a few of these in the Christmas sale at a garden centre. Mine are up all year

Cloudtree Tue 30-Jul-19 09:12:40

Not all fake flowers look fake. I have an (admittedly expensive) fake orchid. My mum who is a keen gardener had to touch it three times before she decided it was fake.

Chilledout11 Tue 30-Jul-19 09:28:32

We heard friends of ours say you can't forget about having nice things in your home but I don't think that's true (2 dc under five years old)

We light candles after they go to bed. Citronella essential oil burns in the kitchen (use a plug in oil burner). Lots of scatter cushions and large plants. Nice accessories (oversized candellabras). Lots of lamps. Large clocks. Quirky mirrors. Pretty towels in the bathroom. Rugs. Favourite books on coffee table.

It's hard to keep the house clean but I recently bought a cordless vacuum. For clutter in the hall ikea have shoe storage and an ottoman can hold larger items (Argos have great ones).

Chilledout11 Tue 30-Jul-19 09:29:12

You can forget I meant

Ohyesiam Tue 30-Jul-19 09:36:50

Texture is the key. You know how well the fluffy rug works in the playroom? It’s that principal. So chunky knitted throws, tweedy type texture cushions.
I discovered fairy lights when I couldn’t have candles in one rented property. I’ll try and find a pic, but if you get plain white ones, they go brilliantly along the top of a wall and down a corner..really bring warmth and light.
I was reading yesterday that lots of synthetic scents are being discovered as carcinogenic, so I personally wouldn’t go with reed diffusers .

Ohyesiam Tue 30-Jul-19 09:38:43

This was a really warming focal point when we renovated and it looked a bit stark.

Ohyesiam Tue 30-Jul-19 11:11:09

This was a really warming focal point when we renovated and it looked a bit stark.

GarethSouthgatesWaistcoat Tue 30-Jul-19 23:38:01

Do you feel comfortable posting any pictures of your space?

I'm trying to make my rooms more inviting - learning and making mistakes as I go!

One thing that appeals is making my furniture work harder grin I make sure I have at least a couple of items in each room that double up as hidden storage. I hate cleaning and it's made a massive difference being able to shut the door/drawer on 'stuff' and quickly dust a unit instead.

I've also been ruthless at decluttering so that I'm not hoarding mess. I can see everything inside at a glance.

This has involved selling and replacing several pieces of furniture. I've found eBay good for gorgeous vintage furniture.

With baskets I'd look for ones with lids.

I've actually sold all my Expedit/Kallax recently as I fancied a change but there's no doubt they're pretty useful and hold an amazing amount of stuff!

What colour are your walls? I've started using more dramatic colours on all four walls (try one or two walls if you're not feeling brave). My house was a beige box when I moved in. Painting has injected some personality into the rooms. I haven't embraced fashionable dark navy but I'm experimenting with mid tones in teal, blue/grey, green, aqua etc.
It creates a backdrop for home accessories and I'm finding I don't have to have as many decorative items on display.

I'm quite partial to statement ceiling shades (I rarely switch the overhead light on), side lamps and mirrors smile

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