The winter months can bring forth a spectrum of emotions, and can effect each of us very differently. Some love the anticipation and excitement of the holiday season, the changing environment, and array of seasonal colours, whilst others can find this time of year difficult. For some, the cold and dark winter months can bring about discomfort or lead to experiencing a drop in energy or mood.*
Spending time outdoors in natural light, establishing a regular sleep routine, and eating a healthy balanced diet can all contribute to boosting our mood…and transforming our homes into as relaxing haven-like spaces as possible can also help.
Of course, the most obvious way to decorate your home at this time of year is to ‘deck the halls’ for the Christmas season. Whether you favour traditional red green and gold, modern metallics, or the clean comforting aesthetic of contemporary Scandi style, there are endless festive elements to suit every style sensibility.
Why not put a contemporary spin on your festive decor this year? According to Old World Christmas adding non-traditional colours to your festive display is a hot trend for 2023. Fluorescent neon hues which seem to glow especially brightly in ordinary light add a pop of contemporary colour to your scheme, and ‘shocking pink’ in particular is set to be the most popular colour in this modern twist on the theme, as it pairs well with most metallics - common elements within holiday design.
If you’re not a big fan of the Yuletide season, however, there are lots of other ways to make your home cosy and inviting…
The enduring trend for ’slow living’ translates perfectly for creating cosy and inviting winter interiors. Sparked largely in response to the COVID pandemic (and kept relevant by turbulent global and cultural events), the slow living trend extols the benefits of aspiring to move through life at a gentler pace - slowing down, and paying greater attention to the finer details of our daily routines and experiences.
As a Slow Living LDN article states: “A slow interiors mindset can help you achieve a home that is both more environmentally friendly and a better reflection of your own identity […] a home which combines your values, needs and style, and allows you to find your own sense of calm.”
This could be achieved by purchasing from independent business’, and buying fewer pieces but of a higher quality so that they will last the test of time. Just one or two well chosen new pieces can be added to an existing space to create a sense of comfort and tranquility. For example, try transforming your walls by adding artwork that conjures positive emotions every time you see it, create a focal point and reflect light with statement mirrors, or add cosy cushions and sumptuous throws to create a space that encourages you to relax and unwind.
Many of you will be familiar with the Scandinavian concept of Hygge (pronounced ‘hoo-guh’), the Danish notion of feeling contentment, comfort and well-being as a way of surviving the (mainly) winter months. Think curling up with a good book and cup of hot chocolate, relaxing in peaceful solitude by the fire, or enjoying the laid-back company of cherished friends and family and we’re heading in the direction of experiencing that Hygge feeling.
Ways that we can generate Hygge in our homes include introducing soft textures and layered fabrics, serene sculpture and wall art, nature inspired accessories, or gentle lighting like table and floor lamps, and even softly scented candles.
Of course, we each have our own style, and if calm and cosy neutrals aren’t your thing, why not accent your room with wild winter art - from artists including Nicola Wakeling, Joe Ramm, Jo Quigley, Rosa Sepple, Alena Carvalho, and Chris Ross Williamson - to fully embrace and complement the season.
You could even plaster your walls with bright and sunny pieces - check out the bright and bold work by Sam Toft and Josie Appleby - to convey a sense of warmth and forge a more summery setting, while you wait for the season to pass.
*While many people may feel ‘a bit low’ in winter, if these feelings are considerably interfering with everyday life, this may be a sign of seasonal affective disorder (SAD). SAD is a serious mental health condition, for which help should be sought. Visit the mental health charity Mind’s website for more information and speak to your GP if you think you may be experiencing it.