Create moments of relaxation with cold-weather essentials
Words: Scott Dodds | Photographer: Inge Prins | Stylist: Charl Edwards
In the throes of winter, your space truly takes on the form of a sanctuary. During a time when we spend more time in an office or commuting than enjoying the comforts of home, it’s a den, offering far beyond the basic need of shelter. It’s here you can recharge, mentally and physically, to take on another week of sideways rain and rush-hour traffic. Not all sanctuaries are created equal, however, and it’s all about carefully curating your living space with the right pieces to induce relaxation, as well as finding the right moments in which to take a moment and enjoy it.
In the coldest season, the bedroom, and by extension the bed, has a two-part function: it’s where you sleep and where you do most of your relaxing. You’d pressed to find a better place to be on a cold winter’s night with nothing to do than underneath three layers of blankets with your choice of light entertainment. Much like with your living room you’re going to want to stock up on blankets and cushions to fill the bed, and don’t neglect how much a new duvet set can change the atmosphere of a bedroom. A mind can race in the comforts of bed, so be sure to throw on some music from time to time: the connoisseurs swear by playing vinyl, but you can’t go wrong with a wireless portable speaker so you never have to brave the cold. Light a few candles, make sure you’re wearing your most comfortable knit, and bask in the situation.
While the mad dash between bedroom and bathroom is no highlight in anyone’s day, once the hot water is on it becomes one of the most meditative spaces in your home. A bare bathroom during winter can tend to feel even colder than usual, and that’s where things like a textured bath mat or toiletry organisers can add both colour and a cosy feel to the room. Instantly improve the whole process replacing last year’s fading towel with a fresh new one (hell, get two, you won’t regret it).
Whether you’ve spent hours on YouTube to rustle up that recipe you’ve been eying for weeks or just buttering toast moments before you need to leave for a work, there’s something to be said for having a dedicated eating zone. Keeping winter in mind, this is by no means limited to a dining room table, and there’s no shame in taking your plates of food or mugs of coffee to the couch or bed. That’s where the blankets are, and there’s no reason to spend a second without them. Try setting trays with matching or complementary cutlery and utensils you need for final preparations, and let the processes keep you busy. When both your mouth and hands are full, the mind tends to race, but learn to live in the insignificance of moment.
It’s important to carve out a part of your home and time in your day for exercise or physical activity, preferably in the morning before life gets in the way. While this may not be in the theme of relaxing (though you could absolutely still use this area for that), it is within the theme of self-improvement and reflection. Pad the floor with a yoga mat or a soft-to-the-touch rug while giving yourself space to stretch out. Keep some blankets and cushions at hand, if you’re in desperate need of some emergency relaxation. It’s a matter of fact that music improves the experience, so have your headphones or speaker at the ready, and if you need to know the particulars, grab that Fitbit.
Adulthood is more bearable when you learn to celebrate the little victories and that feeling of walking into the living room after a long day, dropping your bag and sinking into the couch. That moment is unfortunately always short-lived, and only on the weekend do you get to fully embrace it. Winter influences trends and the way we dress, and the same can be said for the styling of your home. To fully enjoy the sanctity of the living room, stock up on cushions and blankets with some warm textures for the couch to give it the same draw of a comfortable bed. Make sure you’ve got a coffee or side table within arm’s reach on which to store that self-help book, plants, endless empty tea cups or a fiddly array of curios. Add baskets either side of the couch, to fill with magazines or books and extra blankets for your lucky guests. Top off this nook with a soothingly-patterned rug and you’ve got yourself another a second bedroom you’ll never want to leave.
Hair & Make-up: Kally Boyiatjis
Model: Anjelika Frye @Boss
Location: In Awe Stays