15 Ways To Make Your Home A Cozy Sanctuary This Fall
Home Improvement

15 Ways To Make Your Home A Cozy Sanctuary This Fall

Me? I’m an ambivert. That means a lot of stuff (check out “What Exactly Is An Ambivert? How Can You Tell If You Are One?”); however, as it relates to this article specifically, it means that I personally don’t care what time of the year it is — my favorite place to be is inside of my home. I actually try to make it the kind of sanctuary space where that will always be the case.

That doesn’t mean I don’t get excited whenever my favorite time of year rolls around, though; that’s when I will definitely be out in somebody’s store picking up a few things that will make my living space extra warm and cozy.

Things like what? Things like the 15 items and ideas that I’m about to share with you — just in case, like me, you plan on doing a lot of kickin’ it…in your bed or on your couch without any reservation or apology. I mean, it is fall, after all.

1. Go with Neutral Tones

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I can’t believe that it’s almost been two years since my townhouse basically blew up. There, my home décor was shades of blues, browns, and white. My new spot is variations of green, gray, brown, and blue. Clearly, neutrals — the mixing of primary, secondary, and tertiary colors — are my thing, and I don’t apologize for it. Neutrals create a warmth to a space. Neutrals are easy to layer with some of your favorite brighter hues. And, if you have a boo thang, he will probably feel more comfortable in a home that’s decorated with neutral shades.

So, whether it’s some new throw pillows for your bed or couch or an ottoman that you’ve been eyeing to store some of your summer clothes that you’re in the process of putting away, pick up something in off-white, caramel, coffee, or navy color. It’ll immediately bring more autumn energy into your living space.

2. Get Yourself a Cable Knit Blanket

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There’s honestly no telling how many blankets I own. Some are lightweight for the spring and summer seasons, while others are heavier for fall and winter. There’s just something about curling up underneath a blanket while watching a movie that is a top-tier experience. This year, if you don’t already own a cable knit blanket, indulge yourself and get one. Now, I’ll be honest with you — some of the quality ones aren’t the cheapest; however, if you go to Etsy (one of my favorite go-tos for just about…everything), you should be able to find one that works well within your budget. As a bonus, many of them are handmade. Just go to the site and put “cable knit blankets” in the search field.

3. DIY a Fabric Spray

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Okay, so why didn’t any of y’all put me on to DIVA Glamorous Wash before now? What in the world?! I actually found out from an influencer who I like a lot (Christiana is what she goes by on YouTube). Man, that stuff smells amazing and is also a pretty effective fabric cleaner. I don’t use it all of the time, though, only because the scent is so strong, and sometimes, I want my clothes and other items to smell like something different — and that’s where fabric spray comes in. I really like this as a “make your home smell amazing” option because you can customize the spray to smell however you’d like it to.

That’s cool, not just when it comes to customizing scents based on the seasons (some fall scents include vanilla, pumpkin, apple-cinnamon, cranberry, and sandalwood) but controlling what kind of all-natural ingredients that you want to add to your favorite essential oils. That said, a super easy fabric spray recipe that can go on your bedding, living room furniture, and beyond is located here.

4. Also, Get a Ladder-Style Shelf

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There’s something about mantels and bookcases that can also cozy up a space. I think a part of it is connected to whatever you put in and/or on them. If you like this idea but your living quarters are kinda tight, how about a ladder-style shelf? Since it’s vertical instead of horizontal, it can easily fit anywhere from your bedroom to your bathroom. Then, you can add your favorite books, knick-knacks, a plant, and a couple of soy candles to cozy the space right on up. The cool thing about this option is you should be able to find one for between $40-60 dollars (like this one here), in a variety of colors, on sites like Amazon.

5. Own Some “Portable” Fireplaces

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Speaking of visually warming up your spot with a “furniture accessory,” what if you’ve always wanted a fireplace, but your spot doesn’t have one? Something that I personally find to be a visually stunning alternative is to get yourself a fireplace surround (which is basically the frame of a fireplace), then put some tall candles and/or plants into the inside of it. If you also arrange a couple of pictures on top of it, it’ll easily be one of the favorite things about your house for both you and your guests. Are they cheap? No (you’ll probably have to cough up about three hundred bucks for a good one). Are they worth the investment? Absolutely.

Oh, and speaking of portable fireplaces, if you want to have your only lil’ mini bonfire this fall or winter season, I recently purchased a friend of mine some portable campfires (I’m telling you, Etsy is the ish!). They are the cutest tiny tins that you can light up and make s’mores or whatever else you want to do — whether inside or out. He adored them, and I’ll definitely be getting more. You can check out the ones that I purchased (that are made from organic soy and are totally reusable) here.

6. Invest in a Customized Whiskey Maker

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Something else that I got for that same friend was a customized whiskey maker. No, not one of those cocktail-making machines (that are actually pretty nice) that help you to be your own bartender at home. I mean those cute little sets that let you customize various flavors of whiskey by adding different herbs so that you can infuse them into some bourbon. Since fall tends to be the signature hot toddy season, why not have a set of your own in tow? The one I got was under forty bucks. You can check it out here.

7. Put Some Scented Pine Cones into a Basket

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Ain’t it wild how you can find yourself “mimicking” things from your childhood without initially realizing it? I used to wonder why I always had an affinity for pine cones; then, I remembered that my mother used to add them to the home aesthetic. I’m telling you, whether you purchase them already scented or you decide to create a scent and add them to some pine cones on your own (arts and crafts stores typically carry them, by the way), if you put a few into a wicker basket, they will have whatever room you place them in smelling wonderful, easily, throughout the entire holiday season. Plus, they will add a bit of nature to the inside of your house as well.

8. Get a Slipcover for Your Couch

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Have you been looking at your couch for the past six months like you want to toss it out of the window, but it’s just not in your budget to get a new one? Simple solution: a slipcover. You can totally change the look of your sofa without breaking the bank, and it’s just one more cost-effective way to switch up the look and feel of your home during this time of the year. The options are so vast that my two cents would be to put “couch slipcovers” in the search field of your favorite search engine to see which fabrics and designs tickle your fancy.

9. Install a Stained Glass Window

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Whether you want a bit more privacy or you simply want to get creative as far as window treatments go, hands down, one of the best ways to accomplish both missions is to purchase some stained glass window tint film (some companies call them “window clings”). They’re super inexpensive, relatively easy to install, can make a window look like authentic stained glass, and it’s pretty easy to remove as well, not to mention the fact that it makes it damn near impossible for people to look into the window once you add the film to it.

If you go to Amazon and put “stained glass window film” in the search field, you’ll see all kinds of options (design-wise) to choose from. A quick YouTube short can show you how to install the film yourself here.

10. Order Some Canvas Prints of Some of Your Favorite Pictures

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I grew up around some people who are world-renowned visual artists. A couple of them, I commissioned before they “hit it big”; others, I should’ve (le sigh). Anyway, until my budget says that I can afford one of their pieces, I am so into canvas prints. You can get a picture printed off that is damn near as big as half of one of your walls, and because it’s a literal canvas print, all you have to do is hang it. As I’m writing this, I’m looking at a Black print that I purchased digitally on Etsy that I blew up to what I think is 30” x 40”; it was less than sixty bucks. One of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

You can do the same with a print or some of your favorite pictures with some of your favorite people (black and white shots would probably look like sophisticated art, for real). The company that I went with is Canvas Champ (they were professional, affordable, and fast); there are plenty of other options online, though. Just put “canvas prints” in the search field to figure out which one will best suit your personal needs.

11. String Some Lights Somewhere

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Gone are the days when string lights were reserved only for Christmas trees. Personally, I’ve got a wall that has nothing but strings of fairy lights hanging from it, and I couldn’t be happier. Since it gets darker quicker during the fall season, that kind of makes us want to have softer/dimmer lighting, and fairy lights can provide that, especially if you want an “amplified version” of candlelight without the risk of you forgetting to blow your candles out. Hang them on the wall like I did, string them through your curtains and/or around your bedposts. I mean, you see the feature pic, right? Didn’t those fairy lights help to draw you right on in? Coziness on steroids, for sure.

12. Layer Some Throw Rugs

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I’ve always preferred hardwood floors over carpeted ones. That doesn’t mean I’m not good to throw down with a few throw rugs, though. On the practical tip, they can lower your heating bills because they provide what is known as “thermal resistance” (real talk). I also like the fact that they help to absorb noise. Visually, they can cozy up a space. If you’ve got kids or pets, rugs can make it safer for them to move about (as far as falling down is concerned, just make sure that you get a rug gripper to keep your rugs from moving all over the place so that they don’t trip on them). Plus, they’re easier and cheaper to clean than carpeted flooring, and you can swap out different ones to create a different feel and style whenever you want. Are you sold? Cool. When you gettin’ some then?

13. Consider Some Leather Accents

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If you’ve got hella bougie taste and your bank account doesn’t, something that you can do to make your home look more…let’s go with luxurious is to add some leather accents to it. Leather pillows. A leather round ottoman. A large leather basket. I recently stumbled upon some leather placements that I thought were pretty dope. What about a leather-wrapped vase for your favorite fall-season flowers? Listen, just like some expensive shoes can totally change the look and feel of a dress from Target, so can some leather accessories when it comes to your house.

14. Of Course, You Need Some Candles

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There probably won’t ever be a time when I’m writing a piece on how to improve the décor of your home (and honestly, the quality of your life, in my humble opinion) without bringing candles into the discourse. They create a warm feeling. They can be uber-romantic. Something about watching their flames flicker is very relaxing. And you can get scents that will make your entire house smell grand. Actually, one candle company is so into ‘em that they came up with 14 solid reasons to keep some candles in your home (you can read it here).

So, in the spirit of the autumn season, how about some autumn-themed soy (I’ll always say it: they burn cleaner and last longer) scented candles? Some of the same scents that I mentioned for the fabric spray you can find in candles too. Yeah, definitely, one of the most cost-effective ways to warm up a space is to add some candles to it.

15. Treat Yourself to a Down Comforter

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A top reason why you can’t go wrong with a down comforter is they can easily last you one to two decades (yes, literally). Hell, even a down alternative one can give you 10 good years if you take care of it properly. So, imagine how much longer you can get “mileage” out of that type of bedding if you swap two out twice a year (one for spring and summer and another for fall and winter)? See what I’m sayin’? Besides, down comforters are warm, super cozy, eco-friendly, and durable; and another word that’s used for them is “breathability.”

What that basically means is a down comforter is made out of the kind of material that allows your skin to literally…breathe. Ain’t nothin’ like a cozy bed to make you want to enjoy everything about this time of year — so treat yo’ self. As the temps drop, get some warmth indoors. The kind that you could customize to your very own liking. Enjoy!

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