Cozy at Home Checklist
Tackle Those Bookshelves
If your bookshelves are beginning to bore you, now is as good a time as any to get to styling. Pull everything off and evaluate what you have (give those shelves a good wipe down while they’re empty!). Does anything feel “old”? Set aside things that don’t excite you, aren’t current, and big fat aren’t working anymore. To fill those holes, bring in pieces from other rooms, making sure to pull items with different heights, textures, and scale.
Adding in the largest scale items first, spreading them out and separating things are too similar in color or height. A good rule of thumb is to have one “anchor” piece on each shelf, avoiding putting the largest pieces on the uppermost shelves..
Start to add variations of height by layering in vertical and horizontal stacks of books.
Add in layering pieces on top of horizontal book stacks and nestled next to anchor pieces.
Step back and evaluate. Does everything feel right? Does anything feel too lonely, too tall, or too close in color? Spread out anything that looks too similar or is too close in height, and shift around layering pieces until it you’ve got something that you’re happy with.
Clean Out Those Cabinets
Hidden away in cabinets across the country are beautiful decor pieces begging to be brought out! Dig deep in those cupboards and see what might be hiding in yours. A big low bowl can be a welcome addition to the shelf styling project mentioned previously. Pull out a pitcher that’s been in storage and toss in a sprig of greenery to give it a fresh look. A vintage ashtray looks amazing when doubling as a catchall in the entry.
You may even find that old breadmaker or spiralizer that’s been sitting unused for months. Now is the time to break out Grandma’s sourdough recipe or rekindle your love for veggie noodles.
Labels can removed from jam jars and olive oil bottles (google it) and these items can be repurposed into adorable storage jars or vases. Better yet, look up a quick recipe and reuse glassware for pickled vegetables or homemade dressings.
Rearrange Your Furniture
While your space may look great already, odds are, it’s not optimally designed for spending so much time indoors. If your space is feeling really stagnant, it might be time to start rearranging.
If it’s available to you, try to orient your largest pieces of furniture to face toward a window. If not, it can be beneficial to at least try to angle a chair nearer to one in order to be a little closer to the outdoors. Examine rooms for things that no longer serve you; for example, a chair that has become a clothes horse in the bedroom can be repurposed as a cozy reading nook in the living room.
Another thing that may not be serving you is the lighting. If you find there’s just not enough light in the living room, bring in a floor lamp from another room or consider upgrading all your lightbulbs. Lighting can make a huge impact in a room and is my favorite way to instantly enhance a space.
Ah, the never ending chore of decluttering. Too much stuff can make a small space feel claustrophobic, and a large space chaotic.
The simple task of tidying up throughout the day can do wonders for any space. Dirty dishes and recycling can start to pile up quickly, while jackets and shoes can clog up an entryway. Now that we all have a little extra time on our hands, clearing up as you go can do wonders.
Some things can simply feel like their only purpose is to be in the way. However, you may have a hard time letting go completely or worry you may need it again. I gather items like these together and store out of the way for a certain period of time. In a closet, under the bed or in an attic or garage are good places, so they are still reachable, yet out of the way. At the end of the month (or whatever you decide), anything you haven’t gone back for can be donated with a clear conscience.
It's The Simple Things
You know, life isn’t all about cleaning up, shuffling about or making things useful. I think it’s pretty apparent to everyone that this is just as good a time to slow down and be mindful. Taking a bath or reading a book may seem obvious, but can do wonders for mindset and overall well-being.
Little hints of happiness can be sprinkled in throughout your day. Burning your favorite candle during the day, adding a few drops of essential oil to your next load of laundry, even ordering a new pair of house slippers can elevate the mundaneness of the everyday.
Chatting online with coworkers, sending a note to a friend, and digitally checking in on family members can spark the greatest joy. It’s the simple things in times like these that can make a house feel like a home.