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Decorating Diva: 5 ways to brighten up your home this winter

Jessica Padykula is a freelance writer and editor in Toronto, Canada covering a wide range of  topics for several online lifestyle publications. She is a regular contributor for SheKnows, covering travel, style, relationships, health and...

Beat the winter blahs with color

Welcome to Decorating Diva, where every week we share fresh, fun ways to update your home and spice up your living space! Winter is a long, gray season. If you’re already pining for spring (we know we are!) it’s time to liven – and brighten – things up. We put together some simple tips for giving your space a winter facelift.

Decorating Diva

Living room with pops of color

Beat the winter blahs with color

Welcome to Decorating Diva, where every week we share fresh, fun ways to update your home and spice up your living space! Winter is a long, gray season. If you're already pining for spring (we know we are!) it's time to liven – and brighten – things up. We put together some simple tips for giving your space a winter facelift.

To learn more we turned to Amy Kaneko, San Francisco-based event planner and designer with a reputation for artfully designed events. She shares her top tips for adding a little extra color to your home this winter.

Improve your view

The wintry scene outside may be drab and lifeless, but your window doesn't have to be. Kaneko suggests livening up your space with the right window dressing. "You can perk up your view with curtains that bring you joy, whether they feature a pattern that is bold and playful (think Marimekko fabrics) or a texture that is soft and ethereal," she says.

Indulge in small luxuries

Too cold to head outdoors? No problem! "A comfortable armchair can easily become the perfect reading nook by adding a good light and a soft throw blanket," Kaneko says. But don't skimp on the blanket — choose something that enhances your decor, like a faux-fur blanket or a chunky knit cable throw. We love the chunky tassel throw from West Elm ($50 - $80).

Likewise, she suggests giving your bathroom more spa-like qualities. "A beautiful fabric shower curtain can turn an ordinary bathroom into a spa-like setting. Adding vintage glass jars filled with handmade soaps adds color and even more incentive to take a hot bath."

Don't completely retreat from the outdoors

As tempting as it is to hole up inside where it's nice and toasty, it's refreshing — and healthy for both mind and body — to spend time outside. Kaneko suggests taking advantage of any outdoor space you have, especially if you live in a climate that gets some mild days. "Place a few seats or a bench in front of an outdoor fireplace and add a bright outdoor rug. You have an instant outdoor room that you can enjoy all year long," she says.

Fight gray skies with color

Painting your walls a bright, cheery color can brighten up your mood in an instant. The exact shade should be based on your personal preference and decor scheme, but Kaneko recommends sticking to clean, crisp colors. "You can afford to go a little brighter than you typically would, since overcast skies and indirect light will tame the vibrancy somewhat," she explains. "You're also not limited to paint — you can bring color to your walls through artwork, interesting fabrics stretched on canvas or even by displaying your collection of vintage clocks."

Add (plant) life to your home

Accenting your home with plants can make it more inviting, colorful and even healthy – especially in the winter. Check with your local nursery for plants that can thrive indoors in the low-light conditions of wintertime, Kaneko advises. "You'd be surprised at how hanging a single spider plant can do wonders for bringing a sense of life and nature inside."

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