1 Brighten and lighten your windows
Pic: The Shutter Store
With nights getting longer and evenings becoming cooler, you can bring summer back into your home with window shutters
in warm tones. You needn’t choose a bold yellow like these, but the hotter the shade, the warmer the light that’s reflected back into your room. And don’t forget, when you close your shutters at night, they keep out the cold just as well as double-glazing.
2 Be bold with warm colors
Entrance halls are the first room that you and your visitors will see on entering your home, so why not create a warm welcome by decorating yours in a deep shade of red? If you use a paint color, it will be quick to transform, won’t cost the earth, and will look like a million dollars – and you can always swiftly paint it back to a lighter shade in spring.
3 Hang statement lighting
Getting your lighting right is so important in darker, colder months, with low-hung, dimmable pendants and downlighters creating warm, enticing pools of light that can be used to highlight a dining area or a favorite place to sit and relax. For the latest look, hang your pendants in groups or choose an over-sized shade that is a focal point in its own right.
4 Create a feature wall
Pic: The French Bedroom Company
A feature wall can turn a plain room into one that’s spectacular, and it doesn’t take expert DIY skills or a big budget to create. A deep, dramatic paint color will work (inky blues are still a hot trend); a patterned wallpaper just on a chimney breast is ideal; or you could make your own panelling – either with a kit or lengths of MDF pinned and glued to the wall.
5 Lay a bright rug
Choosing a warm-toned rug to make a room seem cozier makes tons of sense – but you can heighten the effect by placing it at the center of a seating area with a coffee table on top, or beneath a dining table and chairs. Ensure that the one you choose is too large rather than small or the effect will be lost.
6 Position mirrors cleverly
Pic: Harvey Norman
We all know that large mirrors make gloomy rooms seem brighter and bigger, but how to maximize the reflections? Tall mirrors, like this one, leant slightly backwards against a wall give you a view towards the ceiling, which gives the impression of a higher (therefore bigger room); if it’s adjacent to or opposite a window to reflect light, even better; put a lamp in front of it and you’ll double the artificial light in the evening, too. Clever.
7 Add warmth with wood
It’s a trend that’s been picking up speed for a while: teaming moody paint shades with warm or light-colored wood to create both drama and warmth in one look. Choosing wood with lots of grain on show will add texture – and therefore interest – to the room, too. Add a sisal rug and even a city apartment will look like a cool, rustic haven.
8 Revamp furniture
Has some of your furniture seen better days? A quick lick of a bold – perhaps even electric – paint shade will give it a contemporary, on trend revamp, and add a splash of much-needed color to a plain room. And if you’ve got the budget for it, a stove like this one will give any fall room a welcoming lift.
9 Add gold accessories
Last year, bronze was the must-have metallic to give your rooms a little glitz and glamor. Now, the interiors world is going crazy for gold. Our advice? Don’t overdo it (unless you want your home to look like Trump Tower). Just a couple of accessories or fittings here or there will do the trick.
10 Create a gallery
Pic: Oliver Bonas
Look around – is there a corner of your home that looks a little unloved? You can make a mini focal point of it with nothing more than a few pictures, grouped together on a wall, a shelf or a sideboard. Grouping, as we mentioned, is key – and if you can highlight the area with lighting, better still.