Many times when I take the tree and garland and other Christmas stuff down, my home feel refreshingly sparse and spacious.

However, there is a difference between sparse and spacious and empty, bare and depressing.  So, I get out my many rubbermaid bins of January decor, you know, winter figurines, snowflake ornaments, a 3 foot tall blowup snowman.  Just kidding.  If you have that stuff, wonderful~you should use it, but most of us don’t have special stuff just for after Christmas decorating, and frankly, I don’t want more stuff to have to store.  So, I shop the house.

Here are a few things I do to fill in the gaps during winter:

1. Move the furniture around.

Since we found that new old coffee table I’m able to gather up our chairs {and dog bed} into a closer more cozy seating area~like in that photo up there at the top.  It probably won’t stay like this forever {ok so I already moved it a different way} but, sometimes just mixing things up a bit help keep a room interesting.

2. Plants

Plants make a room feel instantly fresh and alive. I brought my sweet potato vine in during the fall and it’s still doing pretty well. He gets moved around every week or so.  I keep a little table by our window and rotate plants out from there into other parts of the house.  My yellow poinsettia is still looking nice so he’s still out and not terribly Christmasy and we just added a little bonsai tree from Ikea to our coffee table.  And of course, yesterday we talked about paperwhites and their magic powers.

3. Incorporate White

In the fall I tend to lean to dark cozy woodsy colors and during the new year winter I like crisp, white sparkly warmth.   I set around some of my white trays and dishes {even planting plants in them for a double crisp alive after Christmas winter}.

Shop the house for anything white you could use~candlesticks, blankets folded up, books, even a glass bowl of white shells can feel wintry.

3. Pops of Fresh Color

Fresh pops of color are a quick way to liven up a space, I grouped these blue vase container things on the homework table for some color therapy.  Look around your home for colorful items that can be grouped together in a new way.

And also keep your eye out for a few things that may need to get packed away for awhile.  Let’s say you have this pumpkin throw and floral pillow on a neutral sofa…

…consider switching it out seasonally with one of these juicy throws that will take you through the summer…

paired with a textured pillow that exudes fresh warmth {throws are from world market, pillows from Pier 1}

Speaking of throws, here’s a close up of the one I showed in our room.  It’s from Home Goods.  I added a few of the flowers and I’m hoping to embellish my own throw and if it works, I’ll let you know.

If you have mostly reds in your room, try accenting with turquoise or white.  If you have pattern, go for a solid pillow with texture.  If you have a solid neutral sofa, then you are lucky and have no excuses because you have the most freedom of anyone to do something really fun and unexpected with a pillow or two and a throw.

Don’t forget, part of the cozy atmosphere you can create comes from smells and foods {like home made mac and cheese} and music and temperature and baskets of cozy blankets and lots of books laying around, take advantage of all of your senses.

I’ll leave you with two links to some more winter decorating ideas::

Beth from Stories from A to Z hosted a Winter Mantel party with lots of mantely inspiration.

Melissa wrote a post about The Evolving Winter House that you need to read if you haven’t already.  She talks about letting our homes naturally transition slowly from season to season.  Probably one of my favorite posts she’s ever written. She is brilliant and most of us can really relate with her when she says

My rooms never feel exactly the same in one season as they did a few weeks earlier.

my sister‘s twin girls and little boy with my three boys

Does your home look different in January than in April?