How to Prep Your Home for Fall (and Winter)

Jenna Colgrove cozying up on the Wilcot couch with a fur blanket and a knit throw.

White Sectional Couch | Fur Throw Blanket | Brown Fur Pillow | White Fur Pillow | Ivory Buckle Pillows | Beige Area Rug | White Area Rug | Coffee Table | TV Stand | Arc Floor Lamp

After chatting beauty, style, and 10 random things this move to Chicago has taught me, it only feels right to talk about home decor. Especially since Midwesterners spend a lot of time at home during the colder months. So let’s talk ways to make your space visually appealing so you’re not sick of it by December! After all, having company over and hearing them say your home is like something off of Pinterest really makes a girl feel good.

Sure, when I moved a lot of people told me it was cold in Chicago. As I mentioned on Monday, there was no way I could possibly understand that being a California girl, but I was aware. What they didn’t tell me was that Chicagoans don’t try to go outside all the time during winter. Since our lives in LA revolved heavily on outdoor activities, going places, and seeing people, this was one of the most difficult things to adapt to. A night in was something unheard of in LA. And not only because I scan those darn Netflix categories for an hour before deciding to watch episodes of Law and Order SVU that I’ve already seen.

Maybe it was because I had moved right before winter or perhaps people just really like to hibernate, but the streets of Chicago always seemed a little less busy than I had expected. For such a large city, it wasn’t common to run into a ton of foot traffic. Of course there were a few days around the holidays where everyone was strolling down Michigan Avenue shopping for gifts. But generally speaking, I wondered where all the people living in the multitudes of high rises were. Until June. Then I knew. People, like bears, hibernate.

In the last year, I’ve heard about every weather related excuse as to why someone just wants to stay in tonight. I’m still surprised by it. I thought Chicagoans were some of the toughest humans. Now I realize they’re also smart. While putting on 10 layers to go crunch some fresh snow still excites me, few others share my enthusiasm. Truth be told, I’m adjusting and am excited to go through this winter without having to be in a long distance marriage! So since the forecast calls for lots of time indoors, here are 5 ways to make sure your indoor space is prepped for fall and winter.

1. Get a comfortable couch. 

As the center of any home, having an awesome couch is crucial to entertaining. Whether you’re snuggling up with bae to watch a movie or having the girls over for wine night, you want to create a space that people can relax in. We opted for an affordable neutral sectional a year ago and still get compliments on it. Of course, I decorate it with more pillows than Matt would like, but it’s pretty. Plus, he throws them all on the floor anyway.

easy home design tips to incorporate into your apartment

Grey Arm Chair | Similar Gold Foil Pillow | Similar White Textured Pillow | Gold End Table | Gold Dipped Vases

2. Create cozy corners.

Every now and then you need a break from the couch. Finding the perfect chair is arguably even harder than finding a couch that meets your style standards and also your husband’s requirements for a night of video gaming with the boys. Hypothetically. After extensive research (and sitting in chairs in various home goods stores), this grey chair passed my test as well as this one from West Elm. Both are extremely comfortable and wide enough to curl up in. They’re also cute which doesn’t hurt! We have one in each bedroom! Once you have the chair, it’s really easy to create a cozy corner from there and here’s how.

a white glass bookshelf

Affordable White and Glass Bookshelf | Gold Hands Bookends | Gold Burst | Pink and White Pineapple | Prosecco Candle | Shell Vase | Gold Dipped Vases

3. Design a bookshelf.

Netflix is great but once you’ve watched all the shows (twice), maybe you want to diversify your entertainment source. A well styled bookshelf can provide that in addition to becoming one of the centerpieces of your home. The best part? It takes about 30 minutes to put together after you have all the essentials. Here are my tips for styling your own bookshelf.

how to style a bar cart

Details to come! 

4. Style the best bar cart ever.

If I’ve learned one thing, it’s that Chicagoans love to drink. Our current apartment doesn’t have space for a large bar or even a kitchen table (it’s an awkward layout), so we opted for a bar cart. It took me almost a year to style but I can’t wait to put it to good use this fall and winter when we entertain. Whether you’re having people over for a casual evening or for a big event, a bar cart is going to be the center of everything. Make sure it’s fully stocked! And stay tuned for my tips on how to style one!

5. Find all the throw blankets. 

This one didn’t really fit into any of the spaces or locations above. Or rather, it fits into all of them. I’ve really upped my throw blanket game since moving here. Fuzzy pom, faux fur, and tassels all have found their way into my home. It still cracks me up when I catch a glimpse of Matt under one of these. Seeing him, one of the most masculine guys, cuddling under a giant furry pom adorned blanket just gives me the giggles. But anyway, blankets are great home decor items that also are practical. They make a space feel 10 times as inviting. You’ll notice I always have them in my home decor posts.

Here are a few of my favorite if you’re looking to stock up.

What was your favorite area to prep for cooler weather? Do you have any tips to share?

14 thoughts on “How to Prep Your Home for Fall (and Winter)

  1. I have never thought of decorating a bar cart, but I just love the way yours looks! It’s definitely something I’m going to do myself in the near future :)

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