Friday, December 29, 2017

Making your home your winter sanctuary by Nicole Foster

The warm glow of the holiday lights will soon be fading, just as we begin to scratch the surface of Old Man Winter. We all will be spending more time indoors and at home. So why not take
deliberate steps to keep the cozy spirit of the holiday season with us all the way through until
the first thaw of spring this year?

Cosagach (coze-a-goch) was recently introduced as the newest trend to rival the wildly popular,
Danish inspired hygge (hoo-guh) in 2018 by the Office for Tourism in Scotland. Therefore, we may soon be seeing more tartan and plaid throws making their way onto the scene; which could be great news for us here in Maine!“Lagom” is the popular Swedish practice of “having just enough” and encourages purchasing things which are made to last and creating balance. All are very similar and equally important themes used to convey a feeling of contentment, shelter and well-being; living a slower pace of life inside your home and creating a welcoming space where neighbors and family can share the simple joys of daily life.

There is real value to be found in these design and decorating trends, especially for some
of us New Englanders. All too often people only declutter and clean out their homes with real
purpose and intention when they are preparing to sell. It seems somewhat tragic to watch
home-owners seeing their homes at their very best, only when it is time to leave them. 

One of the most basic principles all of these design concepts share, is the lack of clutter and “stuff” in
every space of your home, allowing clean lines and a more open feel in the rooms. 

If you want to create a more calming living environment for yourself then you need to give things away and throw things away. If a room has furniture pushed up against the walls on all sides of the room, you may want to consider if each of those pieces are truly functional and necessary anymore. If the furniture is just a catch-all for clutter and junk then it may be best to open up that space and create a larger feeling room which is less busy and more inviting. 

Focus on creating more negative space (empty space) on bookshelves and on top of surfaces.
Maximize natural light by using sheer white curtains instead of heavy dark draperies or

LED lighting has become increasingly popular and has its advantages, but when you
are looking to achieve “cozy” - it is best to use floor lamps, candles or even twinkling white lights instead of bright ceiling fixtures. 

If your home did not come already equipped with a fireplace, you may want to take a look at some of the vent-less electric fireplaces with a real flame that are available today. There are many affordable options to choose from and they have come a long way in both style and functionality; so you may want to consider investing in one for cold rooms that could use some added warmth or a focal point.

Add braided or throw rugs to hardwood floors and incorporate pieces of textures from nature
such as stone, wood, leather or fur mixed with cozy chunky knits. Using neutral tones on your
interior walls allow you to add punches of color where needed and to change those out
seasonally. Some of the new bold colors we will be seeing more of in 2018, will be palettes
using blues with emerald greens and teals.

Nicole is a Broker of twelve years, specializing in single family, residential and new construction
at Locations Real Estate and resides in Windham. Follow Nicole on Facebook at or visit

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