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13 Hacks For A Happy Home In Winter

By Kayla Hides

Brisbane homes are usually designed to reduce heat, not keep it in, so what can you do to stave off the winter chills over the next three months?

Apart from the obvious one of switching on your heating, here are 13 hacks to make your home cosy and welcoming:

  • Put your coffee machine on timer

Many of us need coffee all year round, but it’s extra good when you wake up on a crisp morning and hold that steaming hot cup in your hands. It’s all the better if you can shuffle straight from bed into the kitchen and pour a cup immediately.

Before you go to bed, fill your coffee machine with the latest blend from Bellissimo Coffee on Oxford Street and set it to automatically brew 10 or 15 minutes before your alarm goes off, so you can wake up to a fresh coffee aroma.

  • Put your ceiling fans on reverse

You should be able to flick a switch on your ceiling fan to change it from summer to winter mode. Turning on your fan in winter might seem crazy, but the winter mode reverses the direction to push the rising hot air back down.

  • Block out the breeze

A nice cool breeze is all we want in summer, but in winter the slightest draught sends chills up our spine. Block draughts by closing doors to unused rooms, shutting windows and closing up any gaps around both with self-adhesive foam tape or rubber seals, which you can buy at the Cannon Hill Bunnings.

A door snake is another good way to stop draughts. Check out these stylish door snakes from Raine & Humble; Perfect Living in Bulimba is a listed stockist of their products.

  • Add cosy textiles

The best place to keep warm is under a blanket, so invest in a throw for your sofa. Not only does it have a practical use but it also makes your home look more inviting. Check out these on-trend pom pom throws from Annabel Trends, sold at Coming Up Roses gift shop in Balmoral.

Around 10 per cent of a home’s heat is lost through the floor, you should also lay down a rug or two. Add a few velvet cushions into the mix and your winter décor is complete.

  • Enjoy a hot home-cooked meal with some vino

Throw a few ingredients into your slow cooker and switch it on before you leave for work. When you walk in the door that evening you’ll be greeted with the delicious aroma of a nice, warm, home-cooked meal. Enjoy it with a glass of red wine to warm your winter chills. Have you tried the Squealing Pig Hawke’s Bay Syrah? It’s Vintage Cellars’ 2017 Wine of the Year – pick up a bottle from their Oxford Street store.

  • Crack the oven door

Bake some delectable cookies or a hearty casserole and leave the oven door open a little afterwards (after it’s switched off) to allow the extra heat to filter out into your home. The bonus is that the delicious smell will make your home all the more inviting.

  • Keep the lights low

Dim your lights, or use lamps or candles, including tea lights, to create warmth and a more relaxing mood in your home. If you don’t have any handy, you can pick up some candles from Biome on Riding Road.

  • Warm up your bed

It’s nice to snuggle up with someone, but if you need extra warmth try flannelette sheets – they’ll take the cold shock of cotton sheets away that hits when you climb into bed. Popping on a pair of microwaveable slippers, also available at Coming Up Roses in Balmoral, will also help.

You can also put a hot water bottle or warmed-up wheat bag in your bed, or turn on an electric blanket, so it’s nice and toasty. Be aware of fire risks though.

  • Start a fire

Sitting by open fire epitomises everything good about winter. If you have one, light it up to not only create warmth, but a cosy atmosphere. If you don’t have a real fireplace, invest in an electric one.

  • Keep a stash of chocolate goodies on hand

If you’re winding down at night try drinking a cup of hot tea or, if you want something more delectable, some hot chocolate to warm up. Better yet, pop down to Max Brenner on Oxford Street and grab some chocolate fondue.

  • Open/shut them

If the sun is streaming through your windows during the day, open up your curtains to allow the heat in, but when the sun goes down shut them again to trap the heat inside.

  • Use heat from hot water

Having a hot shower or bath is heaven. But did you know that if you leave the hot water sitting in the bath it can add some warmth to your home by humidifying the dry air in your house? A similar effect can come from having a big pot of water simmering on the stove when you’re cooking.

  • Enjoy your time in the sun

If you’ve got an outdoor area that the sun hits during the day, position a comfy chair, lounge or a day bed with some cushions where you can sit to make the most of it. Soak up some vitamin D, and keep a throw handy in case of a breeze.

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