Turn your living room into a winter haven

As winter tightens its ice-cold grip, you’re probably spending the majority of your time inside to escape the chill. However, sometimes a room just doesn’t feel cozy enough for the days when the wind is howling and snow is falling. With a few changes, your living room can become your new winter haven. Here’s how:

1. Upgrades

Before winter settles in, you’ll want to consider doing some maintenance work on your home. One category you’ll need to look at is how airtight the structure is. A great way to save energy, while keeping your home warm and cozy, is to check for possible air leakages. To measure air tightness, consider hiring a technician to perform a “blower door test.” In this test, a portable frame-mounted fan is placed and sealed onto the front entrance of your house. Then fireplace flues are closed, along with any other purposeful air escapes. As the fan blows into the home, technicians are able to measure how much air is escaping through unintentional cracks. Another way to seal your home is to caulk cracks and holes in your home’s exterior. To ensure a cozy season indoors, check door and window frames as well. Though seemingly small, these gaps let a surprising amount of cold air in and warm air out. Once these patches are made, feel instantly relaxed in your airtight and cozy home!

2. Lighting

There’s something about the lighting in your living room that determines its entire mood. Keep things comfortable by utilizing several lamps rather than bright overhead lights. To alter the tone of light, search for lampshades in rich colors. Creams or reds, for example, are great for emanating soft light. If you already have white lampshades, you can even opt for amber light bulbs or Edison bulbs to cast a warm glow throughout the room. Even further, dimmer switches can be installed to control the amount of light in a room. Or, if you’d rather stick with the classics to turn down the intensity of light, burn your favorite candles for an intimate, comfortable feel.

If you own a fireplace, winter is the best time to use it! Before lighting the first of this season’s logs, be sure to clean out the flue. You can certainly call a chimney sweep to do the first cleaning, but be sure to ask questions while he or she is there. They will teach you how to tell if the chimney is getting dirty and what signs indicate decay that requires repair. When the fire is burning its first round for the season, open your retractable screens and crack the windows open. This prevents smoke from settling in the house by using natural ventilation. Meanwhile, forget the cold as the air from outside will be instantly sucked into the chimney.

3. Carpets

Clean carpets add new life to your living room along with some fun and fresh fluff. Over time, furniture and feet push carpet fibers down, leaving your carpeting dull. Thankfully, carpet cleaning companies use a buffer that lifts the fibers back up. After the cleaning is finished, enjoy walking on a soft and cozy surface that’ll make your living room feel more like a warm winter haven.

For rooms with wooden floors, keep your toes warm by adding a simple rug. This touch of fuzz will turn your room into a warm and cozy environment. Retractable screens from Phantom Screens can even match the color of your wooden floors with your window fixtures. You can either choose the veneer they come in or chose to stain your screen in a color that perfectly matches your living room!