After the glow of the holidays fades, the winter can appear cold and bleak for a few months. Why not create your own warmth? Whether you want to snuggle in and hibernate, or fill your home with a casual, cozy gathering of friends, a few little luxuries can make all the difference.
Start in the living room or library, and create a reading nook for yourself and your family. This leather and fabric chair by Hewitt (bottom), available in a variety of combinations from Classic Interiors in Savage, Maryland, makes a comfortable and handsome perch.
A good fire is essential to any a toasty corner. An eco-friendly option is the all-natural Java-Log (top). Made with recycled coffee grounds, these logs burn brightly and more cleanly than artificial logs—and save trees. A unique fire screen and accessories can add just the finishing touch to blend the fireplace area into your décor, such as this fire screen (bottom, right) from Virginia-based Windy Hill Forge. Sophisticated andirons, such as the curvaceous Margaret design by Lyle & Umbach (below, left), add a bit of style.
For long winter nights, stock the shelves with plenty of good reads before you curl up. You may want to grab one of the latest hits to grace The New York Times’ bestsellers list, such as Rhett Butler’s People by Daniel McCraig, or devour some nonfiction, such as Sarah Murray’s traipse through the history of how food makes it to our tables in Moveable Feasts. Reading for the whole family comes in the form of Harry Potter—the magical collection is now available in a complete box set designed to look like Harry’s school trunk. That many pages will keep everyone reading all winter long.
Even if you don’t have an elaborate home theater, you can go to the movies without facing the cold outside. All you need is a clear wall and a projector—then add friends. Mitsubishi’s HC6000 projector (above) performs easily with HD DVD or Blu-ray technology. Just plug it into the player and go! With an auto iris function to adjust to movie lighting, the projector smoothly transitions between light and dark scenes, whether you are watching a vibrant action movie or a vintage black-and-white.
Finally, make your guests feel at home with warm blankets and snacks. QuelObjet.com features such luxuries as Pyrenees wool throws (right) that are super soft and contain no bleaches, dyes or chemicals. Once everyone is tucked in, pass around popcorn from your own theater popper. The Goldrush Popper (top) from Cretors serves up theatre-style popcorn at home—and keeps it warm all night long.
Bed & Bath
Hate to face the bathroom on those chilly winter mornings? Indulge in a warm embrace after your shower with a towel hot off the warmer. The heated-glass towel warmer (right) from Thermique makes a clean, modern design statement in the bathroom—and since it’s free-standing, requires no installation.
If you are building or remodeling your home, consider installing heated flooring and surfaces. In addition to radiant floor-warming systems, Nuheat makes a cable system that can be installed in showers, benches and other non-traditional spaces. Luxuriously soft textiles are another way to beat the chill. Whether it’s fluffy soft towels in the morning or silky sheets at night, slip into something a little more comfortable. Super-soft Supima cotton towels from the KN Luxury Home collection (bottom) come in vibrant colors to brighten your day. Also try the line’s linens in Egyptian or sateen cotton (right, top) with trims in dupioni and silk—all luscious to the touch.
Want to feel truly decadent as you snuggle down? Add a little glow to your room with candles in elegant tall holders such as these glossy white resin candlesticks by Blissliving Home (far right). Fill a fireplace or mantel with them, and finish off the evening with gourmet chocolates. Whether a petite sampler of five flavors or the indulgent 30-piece gift box, these handmade truffles (above) from Vermont-based Lake Champlain Chocolates will melt in your mouth. Why would you ever leave home—or bed—again?
Hewitt Chair: Classic Interiors, Savage, MD; (301) 498-7474; www.classicinteriorsonline.com.