While I still love the book, beauty, stationary, and clothes sections of most stores (Target! what what!), I have found that the older I've gotten the more I've been drawn to the home section of stores. This may have to do with all the fun shows on HGTV, the amazing finds on Pinterest, the advent of websites like Etsy or Wayfair, and the increasing importance I know I have personally placed on loving the space I'm in. When AJ and I moved into our house (2 years ago! Time flies!), we had so much fun finding things we liked and making our space our own. (errr, maybe more like I had so much fun. I think you'd have to ask AJ for his honest opinion and I have a feeling he'd reference his love of Ikea cinnamon rolls if you asked him anything about home decor). Last year I wrote a post about the term "Hygge" and how that can translate to your living space. I still love this concept and the ideas and tips involving it.
I would describe my taste as "comfortable rustic." I love me some natural wood, distressed white paint, pops of color, and big comfy pillows and throws. I also love words on walls and our house is covered in phrases and letters and meaningful photos. I don't love a modern look and if it's "Farmhouse" inspired, then I am all over it. I feel like "cozy" has been fairly easy to achieve in our house because our place is not huge, it feels cozy, and most importantly, it feels like "us." And shouldn't your home feel like you??
Here are some tips I have for creating a cozy space:
1. Shop around! We have items from Ikea, RC Willey, Hobby Lobby, Target, Hand-made (thanks to my Father in law!), Macys, Quilted Bear, At Home, TJ Maxx, Etsy, and all sorts of various shops from our vacations. Each piece holds a memory and as someone who enjoys definitive "end points," I have to always remind myself it's ok to not be 100% "done" with the house----it's meant to grow, evolve, and change, as WE grow, evolve and change.
2. Scents: I love me some Wallflowers. I have one in the dining area and one in our bedroom. I also have scented candles in the kitchen and bedroom. Something about a dreamy smelling home just feels cozy to me. Another great idea for home scents? Bake up a yummy treat!
3. Plush: I love lots and lots of pillows and blankets in bed and on the couch too. We always have a throw or two on the couch and I cannot get enough of fun pillows. Your home is a soft space to land after busy days and pillows and blankets certainly up the relaxation factor.
4. Get some fresh air: I love love love having our windows open and having fresh cool air in our home. And being pregnant, I am always hot, so I have the feeling the windows will be open most of the fall!
5. Soft Lighting: I'm not a huge fan of overhead lighting and I much prefer lamps and dimmer lighting options. I even love to have the lights off in my classroom and have the natural sunlight flowing in. I found a creative soft lighting option for Baby's room that I'm so excited to set up. Lamps, candles, and soft lights are my jam.
6. Decorate for the Seasons: We don't have a whole lot of room to decorate seasonally (oh how I would love a mantel!), but I do like to mix up some small things as the seasons change. Fall deco is my fave, but I also love my spring decor and of course Christmas!
7. My number one home decor tip: You do you. Don't worry about being a slave to one certain style or look. Your home is not on Pinterest or in a catalog. It's your nest, your haven, your sanctuary.....fill it with things that inspire you, make you smile, and work with your lifestyle. Your home will always feel cozy if you feel comfortable, relaxed, and inspired when you are there.