As outside temperatures drop, let’s warm things up inside with cozy layers of color, pattern, and texture. Join me on a seasonal living room tour!
Living With the Seasons
The seasons here in Maine each have their own distinct character. Winters are long and usually harsh. Summers, fleeting but dazzlingly beautiful. Spring always arrives late, in a sudden and surprising rush of green. And fall, conversely, marches steadily from brilliant color to grayscale, from mellow and golden to sharp and frosty.
Living here has given me a renewed appreciation for each season in its turn. You won’t find me starting my “fall decorating” in August or putting up my Christmas tree the day after Halloween. I like to take my cues from Mother Nature. So, as fall continues its steady march towards winter, I make corresponding changes in my home — gradually adding layers of color, pattern, texture, and, yes, a few distinctly “fall” touches. Most of these additions will carry me through fall and into winter.
Join me on a little tour of our living room to see how I have cozied things up for the cooler (and downright cold) days ahead!
Slipcovered furniture is a must due to the two furry spotted friends who share our home! I love how I can just toss the covers in the wash after an encounter with dirty paws!
Another upside to slipcovers is that they make it easy to change the look and feel of your furniture seasonally. In the summer I have white covers on the sofa and swivel chairs and blue and white stripes on the loveseat. For the cooler months, I dress the sofa in a neutral-colored linen. The warm tone and subtle texture are a great base for other cozy layers. The loveseat gets a soft blue chenille. And two years ago I had slipcovers made out of fleece “teddy bear” fabric for the swivel chairs by the fireplace. That snuggly fabric took those chairs to a whole new level — like being wrapped in a warm hug!
A note: I am often asked on Instagram where I get my slipcovers. The Four Seasons Furniture pieces (sofa, loveseat, large chair and matching ottoman) came with slipcovers. I have since ordered additional covers from Four Seasons. I had slipcovers custom-made locally for the pair of small Braxton Culler swivel chairs by the fireplace. Unfortunately I do not have a good source for ready-made slipcovers. Sorry!
I used to swap the living room rug out seasonally. Sisal in the summer and wool in the winter. This was a huge job — moving the sofas and hauling the bulky rugs up and down the basement stairs. I am not usually one to embrace decorating trends, but I am all in on the layered rug look which is popular these days! Not only is this look much easier to pull off, but I love the extra layer of cozy the second rug adds. And of course I never pass up an opportunity to mix a couple patterns!
Pillows & Throws
Swapping pillows and throws is the easiest way to change the look of your home at any time! I have a set of inserts and just switch the covers. Covers obviously take up a lot less storage space, and this way you can choose the kind of insert you want. I get most of my pillow covers from Etsy. They have a wide selection of covers made from designer fabrics in all different sizes and shapes.
This month I got a new set of pillow covers for the sofa and loveseat. I just can’t get enough of Indian block print patterns these days! I chose three mix and match patterns in caramel and gray blue. Other pillows in chenille and plaid wool keep the warm and cozy vibes going. And while I don’t usually go with themed pillows, the texture of the embroidered velvet pumpkin pillow won me over!
Pro tip: When mixing patterns use a variety of pattern sizes — small, medium, and large — in coordinating colors. For more on how to mix and match patterns check out my post Cozy Cottage Mix and Match Bedding!
A fuzzy blanket and furry throw have replaced the light quilts I had across the backs of the sofas.
When it comes to seasonal decorative accessories, it can be tempting to go overboard. I admit that more than once I have found myself standing in Home Goods holding a cute pumpkin tchotchke (wow, I spelled that correctly on my first try!) in my hands and wondering where it could go… And then I tell myself to put it back on the shelf.
Seasonal touches — emphasis on touches — add warmth and charm. This year I have tried to keep those touches natural: a basket filled with cattails clipped from our shoreline, foraged branches, dried flowers, and a few real pumpkins from a local farm. Candles provide a warm glow. Baskets add texture. A bouquet of blooms in seasonal colors (real or faux!) is a nice pop of color. Think of your seasonal decor as a soft murmur and not a loud shout.
All this said, if you like to go all-out with your seasonal decor, do it! The most important thing is that your home reflects you and makes you happy!
The only spot I tend to give a seasonal shout is the living room fireplace display. Just look! I even added a few cobwebs for Halloween!
You can read all about this fireplace and mantel in my recent blog post Easy Natural Mantel Decor to Enjoy All Fall!
Get Your Cozy On
I hope that I have encouraged you to bring some cozy to your home as we head from fall into winter. You might not be in a position to be swapping slipcovers or rugs, but making small changes can have big impact!
Think about: layers (throw a blanket across the back of your sofa or chair), soft fabrics, (chenille, velvet, wool, fleece), warm colors (caramel, beige, brown), bright patterns (maybe even a mix!), and natural touches (grasses, dried and fresh flowers, a pumpkin or two)!
Have fun, be well, and stay cozy!