Autumn Ready - 10 ways to prepare your apartment for the colder months

G​et your winter wool out! Autumn is here and it's time to get your apartment ready for the cold.

Your place is going to turn into a little hibernation burrow for the next few months - there's no point fighting it - embrace the hygge!

Create a warm and an inviting refuge from the wind and rain with lighting and soft textiles.

So crack open a bottle of red, grab a blanket and and dive into these 10 tips for getting your apartment autumn ready.

autumn loungeroom

Image credit: @maryjohoffman

1. W​ardrobe Switch

I​f you live in a small apartment, storage is always an issue and most people don't have the space to accommodate the whole year's wardrobe.

So its time to get your winter wools out from the basement.

Pack away summer outdoor toys, picnic rugs and hats from your hallway and make room for jackets and coats, gloves and scarves.

In the bedroom, make space for bulkier winter clothes and new buys with a clean out. Pack unwanted items off to charity and pack the rest of your summer wardrobe away in the basement so you have enough room for a new season update or splurge!

Y​ou're going to be spending more time on the coach in the coming months so get the lounge set up right.

Drape some big blankets over your couch to cuddle up with. Giant cable knit blankets are on trend and wool plaid never goes out of style. Check out your favourite homeware retailers for this season's selections.

You might want to include some extra cushions which can be another way of updating colour scheme. To bring some warmth, bring in some cushions in ochres, browns and pinks to amp up the cosiness.

3​. More sleep, better sleep

T​he colder months mean time to hiberate.

Unlike bears, we still have to get up and go to work all day, but some mornings you'll feel like you just want to stay in bed all winter!

Shorter days biologically affect us - we get sleepy earlier and want to stay in bed later. When you don't have that luxury, you'll need better sleep quality to ward off winter bugs. And, if you do fall prey to a cold and cough, you may well be bed bound for a few days, so get your bedroom ready!

Perhaps its time to swap out your bedding for a thicker duvet. Blankets and plaids can also dress up the bed as well as couch.

Winter beds should be inviting - may it look like something you could sink into. Creating volume helps - so fluff up the pillows and add some extras if need be.

It might seem counter-intuitive, but white bedding is also great in colder months as it will catch the sunlight and give your bedroom a glow.

Alternatively, you can also introduce warmer tones either in bedding or with extra textiles or artwork to warm up the room.

autumn bedroom

Image credit. Fantastic Frank via Nordic Design

4. D​ecorate with branches

Autumn is the perfect time to talk a walk in the forest. Savour the light, colours and crisp air. Then bring some home with you. A branch can make a beautiful centrepeice for a dining table or statement in the hallway. You can even get festive and decorate it for Christmas.

Branches are a staple decoration in Scandinavian homes where its usual for families to bring in finds from the forest to decorate their homes. For the little ones, its the perfect time to collect chestnuts and pinecones. Scandinavian kindergartens and family homes are filled with chestnut animals and woven decorations this time of year. Checkout our Pinterest board to get an idea!

Dry out pinecones ready for Christmas decorating. A bowl of pinecones can be a simple decor addition or let the kids go with some gold or silver paint. Hang the cones with red ribbon on your Christmas tree or branch centrepeice.

5. Rustic wreaths

Another way to bring autumn to your home is a rustic dried wreath for your front door.

Include lavender or cinnamon for a fragrant wreath all your neighbours can enjoy.

You can forage for your own leaves and branches in the forest, or purchase some dried flowers from your local florist. You don't have to go pumpkin or Christmas themed - if you make a dried wreath that is more neutral, it will last you all through the winter regardless of celebration.

6. Bulbs

Now is the time to bring in some plants from your balcony or put them into a small glasshouse for the winter.

Plant some bulbs now that will greet you with blooms in Spring. Bulbs can be dug up after flowering and stored away for next autumn. Invest in some tulips or buy some bright and cheery daffodils.

Plant some little rewards for yourself now that will bring a smile to your face when warmer weather arrives.

Look at your apartment insulation and particularly curtains. If you've got light summer curtains or blinds, think about switching to some heavy curtains. They not only keep out drafts and save on your heating bill, but can add a luxurious, warming quality to a room. Velvety drapes are particularly indulgent.

8. Scents

As you'll be inside more, some scents can also be comforting as the weather cools, like vanilla or spicier scents such as Young Living's Thieves essential oil. Scented candles, diffusers, and oil burners are all good options. Try to go for products with natural oils and scents as some synthetic scents can not only be overpowering, but can be toxic.

Stock the freezer

Probably the most underrated thing you can do to get your apartment ready for the coming cold months is to stock the freezer with some chicken soup! You will be really thankful when a cold suddenly hits and you can barely drag yourself off the couch.

It's also a good idea to stock your bathroom or medicine cabinet with some cold and flu remedies and keep you kitchen pantry stocked with honey, camomile tea and lemons.

THEN you are truly winter ready!

9. Candles

The first thing Scandinavians do when the weather cools is start lighting candles. The Nordic climes battle the lack of light up to the winter solstice with candlelight from first thing in the morning when the land can still be cloaked for hours, and again mid-afternoon when darkness descends.

There are some beautiful, clean, minimal candlesticks and holders from Scandinavian design brands, but you can just as well go for block candles.

Add a candle to your breakfast table to warm chilly mornings and set the tone for the day.

When you come home, light up the candles, get yourself a glass of red and some fluffy socks, and you're ready to unwind.

10. Skins

Another common addition to Scandinavian apartments in autumn are skins. The are the ultimate hygge element and can bring instant warmth to an otherwise minimalist apartment.

kitchen

Image credit: Residence Magazine

Autumn can be hard. Crowded buses, soggy shoes. It's hard not to be grumpy. When you've been out battling the wind and rain, its pure relief to return to the dry, sacred ground of your own apartment.

Do whatever you can to embrace the cosiness of the season and express it throughout your home.

Make it a sensory experience with fragrances, soft textiles and warm lighting. Brew some lemon tea or hot chocolate, lose yourself in a good book or start a knitting project.

The time has come. Embrace it. Enjoy it.

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