As soon as the clocks go back and the leaves on the trees start to fall, our thoughts turn to winter and the creature comforts of indoors. There’s such a joy in escaping home, kicking off your boots and warming up by the fire, watching the storms outside.
The cold seems to encourage us to slow down to enjoy the simple pleasures of snuggling up indoors. Make your home even more comfortable with our guide to preparing for the cold season…
Make your home the perfect hibernation nest: gather candles, plenty of dry wood for your open fire, treat yourself to some new pillows, a fleecy throw or a thick rug to really make your living room extra cosy. For a warm, inviting light, add a new darker lampshade, or some standing lamps. Then simply relax with the papers, a good book and a warming drink.
If you’re lucky enough to have an open fire, throw some additions to the burning embers to add a wonderful aroma to your home. Dry orange slices in the oven, add a few cinnamon sticks or rosemary springs, or just some simple apple peels for an instance atmospheric scent.
Why not enjoy your evening supper around the fire one evening. Create an indoor picnic with a rug on the floor and some warming dishes: bowls of thick soup, a board of cheeses, pickles and meat and roasted apples with maple syrup for dessert. You could even grab some toast forks and carefully toast your bread in the flames of the fire before slathering with butter, paté and jam.
Create your own miniature spa in your bathroom. Light scented candles, turn on some soft music and run a steaming hot bath. Rather than bubble bath, maybe add something new to the water to really nourish your skin: try dried seaweed in muslin bags for a detoxifying bath, rose and jasmine oils to really relax you or geranium and juniper berry to soothe a tired mind. For a full on spa experience treat yourself to a homemade body scrub, and a face mask simply made with yogurt and honey.
Feasts with friends
Gather friends round for simple feasts to bring instant warmth and laughter into your house. You can keep your menu traditional with a roast – maybe try a whole roast duck roasted with plums, or a sirloin of beef with a bubbling cauliflower cheese. Or for something simple, a slow cooked stew – just load your pot with herbs and root vegetables. Try pork with cider finished with some creme fraiche, or lamb with red wine topped with a gremolata of garlic, lemon and parsley at the end. Just add candles and wine for the perfect party atmosphere.