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Beat the Winter Blues with Uplifting Decor

Winter is magical, romantic, enchanting…and it can also be a bit depressing. The sun sets much earlier. Cloudy days may outnumber the sunny ones. Cold weather inspires time indoors, which can seem isolating after awhile. The early part of winter may be festive, thanks to a slew of holiday decorations and gatherings that put a twinkle in our eye. But when January hits and the Christmas decorations come down, it’s back to the cold without the promise of an upcoming celebration. And there are still weeks of winter left to face…

Living room with cozy touches

That’s why today we at Decoist highlight some design tips for beating the winter blues. We’re not implying that a few decorative changes can overpower feelings of depression. If feelings of sadness become overwhelming, it is important to seek support. But our surroundings do make a big impact on us, so why not arm yourself this winter with some cozy, eye-catching additions to your home? Check out the images and suggestions below, then tell us about how you handle the winter weather by leaving a comment at the end of the post.

Let There Be Light

We begin with the light. Not only does sunlight boost our mood (head outdoors on those sunny winter days, folks), the twinkle of holiday lights can evoke the magic of childhood and the festivity of celebration. If you are a person who feels comforted by a well-placed set of string lights, consider leaving a bit of twinkle indoors after the holidays have passed. For example, place lights along a bookshelf in the main living area, as shown below… [from My Paradissi]

Twinkle lights glisten on a shelf

There are other ways to let the light in, including the addition of twinkle lights on the ceiling. Explore ways to creatively incorporate a star-like shine in your home. [from Avalon Interiors]

Twinkle lights on the ceiling

Don’t forget about the power of outdoor lights. Outdoor bulbs on a string create a café-like feel that is perfect for dining in the fresh air. And during those winter months when you’re not spending large amounts of time outdoors, you can still enjoy a nice view of the lights from the comfort of your warm home. [from Pedersen Associates]

String lights in an inviting backyard

Let’s talk light fixtures… Consider adding a new statement piece to your home this winter. Not only will a little redecorating take your mind off the cold, dreary weather, the results will be lasting. Explore the possibility of a tiered chandelier featuring lights in stead of crystals, as shown below. [from Gutman & Lehrer Arquitectas]

Light fixture with a warm glow

You might even consider weaving a strand of battery-powered lights around your favorite light fixture for the winter. Adding some shine to an area like the bedroom will create a charming, uplifting vibe that can soothe you to sleep each evening. Consult a lighting shop for the best way to add a festive twinkle to a light fixture or pendant light in your home. Some may even come with the lights already incorporated into the design… [from Segev Photography]

Light-filled fixture over the bed

Color Your World

There’s no denying that color affects our mood. Why would so many restaurants choose hues such as red to energize customers while stimulating the appetite? By contrast, if you’ve ever been in the hospital, you may recall feeling like the white floors and walls were a bit stark. No wonder the all-white landscape of winter can seem lonely, especially when combined with gray skies. Bring some bold color indoors with sunny, uplifting shades such as yellow. Below we see the Spider Coat Rack from CB2:

Colorful yellow coat rack

Note how yellow pops against neutral colors such as gray. No need to repaint a room in your home. Try adding one bright accent, as shown by the Array Yellow Bookscase from CB2 below…

Yellow bookshelf

Another color that packs a cheerful punch? Orange! Often a favorite accent color, this hue combines well with other brights such as blues and greens. Again, one small purchase has the power to transform a room and serve as a shiny reminder that brighter days are ahead. In the next image, we see the Gates Lacquer Side Table from West Elm:

Deep orange side table

Here we see three vivid hues with the power to uplift. Orange and yellow can evoke a sense of warmth. Not to mention, they are undeniably upbeat! A vibrant shade of blue can be calming and peaceful without evoking sadness. And don’t warm colors pop against azure tones?! [from CB2]

Blue room with an orange pillow

Get Cozy

If the landscape outdoors is icy and bare, make your home a place of coziness. Creating a warm feel in areas such as the living room and the bedroom will inspire feelings of comfort, especially when contrasted with the cold outdoors. Now is the time to add a couple of extra throws to your seating, not to mention floor cushions and a textured rug… [from Home Decor World]

Living room with cozy touches

You might even consider stashing extra pillows and blankets in a hidden area, such as a trunk. When it comes to selecting pillows for the winter, pay attention to color and texture. We love the vintage suit-inspired feel of the Bouclé Swoon 20″ Pillow from CB2, shown below to the left:

Extra pillows for a cozy winter

On a similar note, these Bouclé Grid Throws from West Elm could not be cozier. Textured blankets are irresistible in the winter, beckoning you to curl up with a book or take a nap by the fireplace. Place seasonal blankets on chairs or over the back of the sofa as a reminder of warmth and comfort.

Cozy throws for winter warmth

Don’t forget to add extra blankets and pillows to your bed for additional warmth at night. Furry textures are very winter-appropriate, and there are plenty of animal-friendly alternatives. The Ombre Faux Fur Throw below is from West Elm

Faux fur throw

Breathe New Life Into Your Home

Nothing beats the winter blues quite like indoor plants! The landscape outdoors may be devoid of greenery, but that’s no reason to close the door on verdant decor inside. Many retailers continue to sell garden-related accents throughout the winter, such as stylish planters. These Marbleized Cylinder Planters from West Elm beautifully contrast the plants that fill them, and they make a lovely modern statement that blends well with any wall color:

Marbleized planters

Plants keep us connected with nature. They improve air quality in the rooms they inhabit. They reduce stress and beautify our surroundings. The benefits are endless, and there’s no time like winter to add more greenery to your space. Below we see the kitchen of Going Home to Roost blogger Bonnie Forkner. One standout feature of this space: an abundance of well-placed greenery!

Plant-filled kitchen

In fact, the kitchen is a great place to add plant life. Some people display herbs in vases around their culinary space. Produce such as apples, oranges and artichokes also makes a lovely statement. And there’s nothing like a vase filled with blossoms that add height and beauty… [via Houzz]

Kitchen with plants and produce

Don’t forget about the power of small statements such as succulents and air plants. These low-maintenance indoor plants are quirky, stylish and eye-catching, especially when placed in containers such as glass terrariums. You can even create an artistic vignette with the help of pebbles, shells and other interesting additions! [from Stephmodo]

Indoor plant arrangement in a glass goblet

Do you have any tips for beating the winter blues with uplifting design? Share your thoughts and advice by leaving a comment below…

Kate Simmons

Kate Simmons is a freelance writer and design blogger with a love of all things decor. She spent her childhood writing stories and working on interior design-themed DIY projects. Kate’s published writing reflects her special interest in how design has changed through the decades. Her blog Mirror80 ( http://mirror80.com/) explores the fashion and [...]

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