Shifting from the summer into the winter months can be a difficult adjustment, particularly when we’ve just experienced such a long and warm few months. Autumn exists to help guide us into the longer nights and shorter days and it does its best, but sometimes, we need a little extra help to make our homes adapt to the winter chill.
Here, we’ve collected a few small changes you can make to your home and your lifestyle to transform the former from a summer paradise to a winter wonderland and the latter from gentle and relaxed to cosy and rustic.
Make the most of the natural light – We might not get as many hours of daylight during the day, so it’s important to ensure we make the most of what we do get. It might prove tempting to bring heavy curtains into the living room, for example, but pair them with a pair of Venetian blinds that you can leave open during the day to let the light in.
Accentuate the light – Of course, during the evenings, you’ll need a lot more artificial light too. Some lamps that mimic the effect of natural daylight rather than artificial light that will not only help seasonal affective disorder (SAD) sufferers but look incredible too.
Use your fireplace – Whether you have a wood-burner or a more ornate open fireplace- don’t neglect it and allow it to become little more than a decoration. You would be amazed how quickly a roaring fire can fill your home with warmth, not to mention that unmistakable smell. If you have a fireplace and you are not using it to make your home feel warmer, why do you have one in the first place?
Eat hearty food – Throw out the light salads and cold cuts and stick to hearty, one-pot meals full of potatoes, vegetables and rustic flavours. Hot pots and stews can really help warm your family from the inside and create a sense of being ‘comfortably full’ that is tough to beat.
Go for more walks – Just because it’s cold outside, don’t lock yourself indoors! Put on your gloves and your walking boots and get out there! A good winter walk will get the blood pumping and help you to work up an appetite for all that hearty food you’re going to be consuming!
Release the rugs – Laying a new, thicker carpet just for a few months a year would be an expensive solution to a problem with a much more simple answer – simply lay down thick rugs to help your feet feel warmer and your home feels cosier.
Preparation – make sure your home is prepared for winter by lagging your pipes (reducing heat loss) and making sure your boiler is serviced and ready to work! Also, make sure your chimney is freshly swept, your gutters are clean of debris and your loft is properly insulated. Finally, draught-proofing your windows and doors is cheap and simple but should have a substantial effect on your heating costs.