Cozy Up Your Home for the Holidays

Image courtesy of Lauren Liess. This space radiates with warmth, inviting us to enter and relax.

It’s the time of year where temperatures drop, and everyone looks forward to all things cozy. There’s no better place than your home to amp-up welcoming vibes, especially as the holiday season gets closer and house guests are over more frequently.

Before this busy time of year, consider making subtle changes to ensure your home is inviting and relaxed so you and your loved ones can truly enjoy your home – especially after that third (or fourth) helping of mashed potatoes and green bean casserole. 

Create a spa-like bathroom

When we think of restful places, the bathroom is not necessarily something that pops into mind. However, with the right setting and accessories, your bathroom can be transformed into a haven of self-care and tranquility.

An all-white bathroom may look too sterile. The key is to find a balance. Mix in tranquil hues like shades of blue, green and bronze to instantly give the room the peaceful feel of a luxury spa, along with some natural elements like wood and natural stone.

Shown above is a perfect example of the classic 3×6 subway tile, but with added dashes of warmth, thanks to the use of 16×16 Basalt stone field tile, wood, and warm metal. The designer didn’t stop with the walls – instead they opted to finish the ceilings in both tile and wood! Love it!

Add candles with relaxing scents like lavender and vanilla to make the room instantly calm. Candles or essential oils in the guest bathroom show thought and care. Your guests will feel welcome and at home.

Taking a luxurious bath is another easy way to feel like you’ve stepped into a spa at the Four Seasons. However, if baths aren’t your thing or your bathroom doesn’t have a tub, you can add a body spray to your shower for hydrotherapy and a massage-like feel.

The calming bathroom above is a great example of how to use a decorative tile on the walls, complemented by a plank porcelain field tile on the floor. Both products are not only attractive but durable and easy to clean – a win-win in our book! Love the wall? Ask us about our Scraffito tile, handmade in Portland Oregon.

Utilize a fireplace

Nothing will make a room feel more inviting than a roaring fire on a cold night, and if designed well, will make an immediate statement in any room. Given that they draw so much attention, you should consider making your fireplace the room’s focal point.

For starters, make the fireplace surround appealing and fun to look at. This is an easy place to add color and texture to the room. Refacing it with tile that makes a statement and reflects your personality is a must. Your options include porcelain, stone, and terracotta tiles, just to name a few.

This showstopping fireplace is sure to have guests coming in close. The horizontal lines of the Zebrano stone field tile help add to the feeling of tranquility in this space.

Your mantle can highlight your personality and draw guests into the room. Change it up with the season, add garland and ornaments. Want to add a personal touch?  Display photos and family heirlooms, great conversation starters for your next holiday gathering

Introduce calm colors

Too many bright and harsh colors can overwhelm the senses. While great at creating an energized and fun space, these colors may not be ideal for day-to-day. Your home is your sanctuary, providing a place of calm to you after a long day at work – and to your weary guests after traveling long distances to come to stay for the holidays!

Painting a space is a simple way to introduce color. It’s as simple as updating your walls from white to pearl or a warm beige makes a room feel serene without a stark change. Want to mix it up? Create an accent wall for a vibrant infusion of color. A navy, burnt orange, or deep teal can add rich color that maintains the inviting feel you’re working towards.  Paint is easy, but we feel the most impact is made with tile.

Nothing takes your walls from ho-hum to amazing like a little metallic. We are loving this marble and brushed brass mosaic.  And what do we call this beauty? Hudson.

To continue the flow of color throughout the rest of the room, look for accessories in tones to complement. Little bursts of color from blankets, pillows, wall art, and table decor can make a room both welcoming and interesting.

Update your furniture

The pieces you include in your home set the stage. From the crisp clean lines of an uber-modern style to a layered and textured relaxed look, your home tells a story. The common tale during the holidays is “Welcome. Make yourself at home.”  Take a look at your furniture and ask yourself, “What story am I saying to my guests?” Choose furniture that feels welcoming and comfortable to you.

One of your most used pieces of furniture is your sofa, so you want to make sure that it’s comfortable. Signs of age, like lumps, sagging and worn fabric, all say it’s time to replace it with a new one.  If you can’t stand to sit on it for too long, chances are your guests won’t want to either.

One of the most important and often neglected rooms during holiday time is the bedroom.  Depending on your home, the guests may have their own bedroom, or possibly bunk up in the kid’s room. Make sure all guests have a place to sleep, and please, take this simple advice: spend a night in the bed you will be putting your guests in.  If you’re uncomfortable due to the mattress or other factors, you can bet your guests will be too!

One more thing – lighting!  Light plays a huge role in adding ambiance to a room.  Make sure ample table and floor lamps create appropriate overhead and task lighting.

Want to see more sofas ready to ship for the holidays?  Check them out here.

Decorate the kitchen

Having an organizational system is key to a welcoming kitchen. Otherwise, it’ll just feel overwhelming and messy. Find uniform storage bins or a functional hanging pot rack for added storage. You holiday trinkets will shine if they’re not hidden under clutter.

A backsplash is often the star of the kitchen. It sets the personality for the kitchen, even the house. It speaks to your haven and desired mood.  What’s your mood? Is it clean and classic with a simple cabinets and subway tile, or bold and graphic with high contrast cement tiles? Continue your story with the other elements in the room – seating, dinnerware, towels, and the finish of your appliances. Everything works together to make a place people want to hang out in. That, plus the smell of the freshly baked apple pie you just popped out of the oven!

The kitchen above is classic and simple.  The backsplash adds a handcrafted feel, a piece of art for the space.  The product shown is our hand-painted Palio 20 terracotta field.

As it keeps getting colder outside, make sure your home is a place where your loved ones want to snuggle in and enjoy being together with you. Try a few of these tips as the holiday season approaches. You’ll reap the benefits all season long.


Our friendly, knowledgeable staff is always happy to help advise on tile design. Visit one of our DC, MD, or VA tile showrooms for a free tile design consultation.

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