Now that November is here, it’s time to get back into the kitchen! Goodbye, summer barbeques and dining al fresco. Now our families are ready for soups and stews again…and a cozy kitchen.
There’s just something about the kitchen when the days get shorter and the nights get colder. I suspect it’s simply human nature prompting us to get closer to the “hearth” or heart of the home. For some of us, however, we opted for a sleek, clean look when designing our kitchens, and we aren’t sure how to temporarily soften that look for the winter months.
Does your kitchen say cozy, in preparation for the change of seasons? If not, here are seven tips for making your kitchen a place of comfort, warmth, and home…
Work with wood
Your kitchen might already be warm with wood if you chose wood kitchen cabinets, wood flooring, or butcher-block counters. If not, you can still add touches of wood with wall décors such as hanging signs or antique cutting boards.
Add some greenery
Plants add a touch of hominess to your kitchen, and if those plants are herbs, you as the cook get the added bonus of fresh herbs to snip off and use while preparing dinner.
Lay down some rugs
Rugs are versatile. Put them away during the summer months if you don’t want to deal with keeping them clean, and pull them out for the fall and winter. They’ll add a touch of cozy to your kitchen, give you a comfy place to stand while cooking for washing dishes, and add a touch of color to the room.
Speaking of color…
If your new kitchen design went for sleek and minimalist, now might be the time to add some color to the kitchen, to make it cozier for the colder months ahead. Color can be décor, dishes, the aforementioned rug, napkins, a valance…. You don’t have to paint your walls or anything dramatic like that, only add a pop or two of color.
Pick up the patterns
Patterns and texture add coziness too. A few accent pieces with texture, like baskets, or the wood signs mentioned above, can warm up the room. Or maybe change out the kitchen curtains or valance to something more dramatic for the winter. If you opt for a rug, that can also add texture.
Look for warm lighting
Is your kitchen all designed and done so changing the lighting isn’t an option? You can still create a cozy mood. Change the lightbulbs to something softer, use a table lamp or two, or light candles. Anything that softens the light and warms up the room will help.
Add artwork and antiques
Even a brand-new kitchen can be cozy and appealing if you display a little artwork or a few antique pieces. Maybe it’s your grandmother’s teapot or a souvenir from your trip to Paris. As long as it looks treasured and timeless, it will help to warm up your kitchen.
And let’s not forget smells! For a truly cozy kitchen, bake some cookies, braise a pot roast, simmer a stew, or put a loaf of bread in the oven. Nothing says cozy like the wonderful smells of a home-cooked meal—even if your kitchen is all modern in every other way.