We can all agree that your house is supposed to feel like home. And in order for it to feel like home, it should be relaxing and approachable. To sum it up in a single word, it should be cozy. But how do you achieve a cozy look and feel when you’re on a strict budget? We’ll cover all of that and more in this article.
What Does “Cozy” Mean…Anyway?
Cozy means different things to different people.
According to designer Sara Toufali, “[Cozy is] something that is comfy, lived in, warm, relaxing, happy, has good vibes, and is a place you’d want to hang out and relax. Cozy is down to earth, maybe just a little messy, and doesn’t take itself too seriously.”
What’s your definition of cozy? Does it feel like the home you grew up in? Or maybe it’s a vision of the house you always wished you lived in? Is it simple and sleek, or classic and homey? The good news is that you get to decide.
Budget-Friendly Tips for a Cozy Home
You don’t have to blow through all of your savings to create a cozy home that makes you happy. Here are some inexpensive ideas that make it easy to achieve a cozy look on a budget:
Use lots of texture. The look and feel of the room are defined by the materials you select. As one designer puts it, “Color, lighting, and furniture all play key roles in forming a beautiful room. But the texture is an interior designer’s secret weapon for making any space feel cozy.”
Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to use the same textures throughout your home. In fact, the more textures you use, the cozier. Combine sleek textures like concrete and metal with more rustic options like stone and wood. Then throw in some chunky fabrics, pillows, and blankets to bring the room to life.
Include a fireplace. Nothing says “warm and cozy” like having a fireplace in your living room. If you already have one, it’s just a matter of accentuating the fireplace with how you decorate the fireplace surround and mantel. But guess what? Even if you don’t have an existing fireplace, adding one isn’t as expensive as you might think.
While you might not have the budget to install a wood-burning fireplace with a chimney, electric fireplace inserts are definitely an option. These fireplaces can be inserted into almost any existing wall – including interior walls with a drywall finish – and provide instant ambiance and warmth.
Layer your lighting. Kill the overhead lighting and layer your lighting plan to provide a warm glow throughout the home. Layered lighting consists of the ambient, task, and accent lighting – each of which is intended for a different purpose. Do some research and integrate these three categories together as best as possible. Also, we highly recommend putting as many lights as possible on dimmer switches. This gives you complete control over the lighting, no matter the time of day.
Integrate plants. Plants are a great interior design addition for a variety of reasons. For starters, they add texture (which, as mentioned, is a key to creating cozy spaces). Secondly, they add a splash of color against your neutral backdrop. Thirdly, there’s something about having a piece of living nature inside your home that makes it feel more alive and centered.
When adding plants, think in terms of size, color, and texture. Mix things up by including a combination of succulents, ferns, flowers, and hanging plants.
Aromatize rooms. If you really want to create cozy spaces, you have to think beyond aesthetics. Your sense of smell is important too. In fact, the smell is often what sets the very first impression when someone walks into a room.
There are several ways to aromatize a room. Popular options include candles, essential oils, and spices. You don’t want to overpower, but you do want to infuse just enough scent to make the space feel peaceful. Good scents include lavender, cinnamon, lemon, and rosemary.
Adding it All Up
As you can see, there are plenty of different ways to approach a cozy interior design. From the look to the feel to the smell, everything works together to impact how you feel in a space. Use some of the tips in this article as inspiration, but never copy-and-paste ideas. Remember, this is your space – make it uniquely you!