How to create a cosy home

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A cosy home is so much more than pillows and throws; it’s about creating an all-encompassing atmosphere of warmth that appeals visually, and also beckons you to come in, relax and stay a while — or forever!

In our own designs, we achieve warmth through an interplay of contrasting elements, which help bring depth and dimension to a space. Picture it: A palette of rich, moody tones juxtaposed against airy, care-free neutrals; a variety of materials, textures and finishes; and the interaction of shadow and light. These opposing elements create intimacy, drawing you in and wrapping you up in its warm embrace. Let’s explore this design style and how you can use it to spice up your space.

Colour

The choice of colour sets the tone for any interior, and when it comes to creating warmth, interior trends are gravitating toward richer, deeper tones. For example, a dining room draped in a dark aubergine; a basement bar adorned in forest green; or a bathroom splashed in navy. These hues not only evoke a sense of depth, but also infuse the room with a warm, organic ambience.

Contrast

As we’ve already mentioned, contrast plays a pivotal role in many of our designs. Black is a great way to add a much-needed dose of drama, particularly when incorporated into an otherwise neutral room. Black is often associated with sophistication and luxury, and when combined with earthy tones such as deep browns, muted greens and lighter neutrals, the result is a harmonious blend that emanates warmth.

Connection

Organic materials can also connect a home and its residents to their roots. Natural wood, stone and textiles not only evoke a homey, welcoming look, but it also contributes to a cosy feel. Plush rugs, soft throws, knitted cushions and textured wall coverings — in combination, layering these elements make it feel more inviting and cocoon-like. By incorporating materials that engage the senses, you can create an immersive experience that fosters a sense of comfort.

Complementary lighting

Lighting, often underestimated, plays a pivotal role in shaping the feel of a space. In the pursuit of cosiness, employ a mix of natural and artificial light. Strategically placed lamps, pendant lights or wall sconces can cast an inviting glow that enhances the richness of your chosen colour palette. For an intimate and moody atmosphere, consider dimmable lights and warm-toned light bulbs, creating a cocooning effect that is perfect for unwinding after a long day.

Cramped spaces

While the allure of deeper tones is undeniable, it’s crucial to strike a balance, especially in smaller spaces. To prevent a room from feeling cramped, incorporate lighter elements. Consider light-coloured furniture, crisp linens, or even purposefully placed mirrors to reflect light and create the illusion of more space. It’s this juxtaposition of dark and light elements in smaller spaces that ensures the warmth and depth are maintained without overwhelming the senses. It’s a delicate dance between the contrasting hues that results in a harmonious and inviting environment.

Cosy and warm

Opposites attract, as they say, especially when the goal is to bring some heat into the home. We find that the right colour, texture and light, in the right doses, can make all the difference in transforming your living space into a haven of warmth and relaxation. Whether you’re entertaining guests or seeking solace after a hectic day, a cosy home is the ultimate sanctuary, where every element converges to create a space that feels like a warm embrace. So, now that it’s winter? Let it snow!

Trish Knight and Nicole Varga
Trish Knight and Nicole Varga

Designers Trish Knight and Nicole Varga are co-founders of Knight Varga Interiors. Collectively with two decades of experience, this Vancouver-based multi-award- winning design firm is known for creating well curated interiors. The firm provides complete bespoke residential design services throughout Vancouver & North America. knightvarga.com @knightvarga

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