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Our homes are a special place: they’re where we gather together with our loved ones, share ideas and inspiration and make some of our most treasured memories. That’s why having a home that’s cozy and inviting is important to have — not only for when guests visit, but for the people who use and live in it every day. Read on for small and easy changes you can do to make your home cozier.

Work in Personal Touches to Make a Grand Entrance

The adage that first impressions are lasting impressions rings true for the home, too. Give yourself a little boost of happiness each time you walk through your front door by placing a candle, plant or succulent, family photo and sweet-smelling candle on a small console table. You’ll love seeing the personal mementos upon returning home, and guests will appreciate the unique personal touch.

Layer Lighting to Master Ambience in Every Room

It takes either two or three layers of lighting to create a functional and inviting room: ambient or overhead lighting, which provides an area with overall illumination; task lighting to help you carry out specific tasks such as reading or working; and accent lighting, which boosts visual interest and draws the eye to key features in a room such as artwork, decor or houseplants. To make your home as cozy as possible, be sure to consider each layer of lighting in every room in your home. As seen in our Avalon model home, designer Andrew Pike coupled a shapely brass light overhead with a pair of floor lamps on either side of the sofa, and a task lamp on the desk.

Soften Up Workspaces with a Runner or Rug

Whether hovering over the stove, cleaning the dishes after dinner or washing up for bed over the bathroom sink, we spend a lot of time standing in certain areas of the home. Adding a plush runner or rug will make time spent in these areas of the home more enjoyable by giving you something soft to stand on and keep your feet warmer during cooler months.

Go Overboard with Soft Textiles

No matter the season, there’s nothing better (or more fun) than layering in plush textiles to create a home that’s truly cozy. And while rugs, throw pillows and throw blankets are must-haves, you can also work in poufs, ottomans, upholstered benches and even floor pillows to up your home’s coziness factor.

Use Candles to Give Your Home a Signature Scent (or Two)

Fragrant aromas and a feeling of tranquility are both things that remind us of home, and lucky for us, scented candles and essential oil mixtures are inexpensive items that capture both these things. Placing candles or diffusers throughout your home will not only give it a wonderful fragrance, but will always make you feel happy to be home.

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