Our bedrooms are our personal sanctuaries, a place for rest and relaxation. It is therefore imperative our bedrooms feel completely comfortable, which for many can mean cosy and cocooning – especially during the colder months.
Luckily a little goes a long way when it comes to making a home cosy, especially bedrooms where we seek comfort and ambiance – key elements of feeling cosy.
From introducing warming layers and lowering the lights to carving out cosy corners for curling up with a good book, there are simple styling tricks to ensure any bedroom feels suitably cosier.
How to make a bedroom cosy: 11 interior design tips
Aside from the best bedroom paint colours to ensure s sense of calm creating a sense of comfort in a bedroom is easy with the right styling tips and tricks.
Here are our expert-approved methods for making a bedroom feel cosy…
1. Lowering light levels
Considered an important part of sleep hygiene the right lighting is crucial for any bedroom, to be able to create a better atmosphere in which to sleep. Adjusting the lights to a low level is not only a key factor in helping our eyes adjust to the dark, but it also holds the secret to establishing a cosy ambience.
“Layering your lighting is the key to creating the perfect balance of warmth, cosiness and function is particularly important in a bedroom,” says Rohan Blacker, founder at lighting specialists Pooky. “You need a combination of task and ambient lighting solutions for relaxation, reading or getting dressed.” All of these are best warm, not bright lights
“A dimmer switch is always a good option for the bedroom, it offers flexibility, providing brighter lighting for when you are getting dressed and softer mood lighting for bedtimes.”
“Use yellow bulbs for lighting over white, in the bedroom,” adds interior designer Jennifer Kay. “Yellow light gives a much cosier, warmer feel. White light can sometimes feel too bright and stark.”
2. Adding lamps and downlighters
As well as lowering the overhead lights it’s easy to change light levels by introducing more localised sources of light. Lamps, for instance, always provide a lower level of light by nature, so are perfect for creating a more cosy lighting scheme.
“Where possible use soft downward lighting, from lamps and directional lighting, to create pockets of focused light,” suggests Jennifer. “This will create more ambience and a softer, warmer feel in your bedroom.”
“You could draw attention to your bed, the main focal point, by surrounding it with light fixtures that direct the light down, rather than up. The visibly darker parts of the room will only make the lit-up area feel more atmospheric and cosy,” Jennifer explains. This is also a good trick to make a small bedroom look bigger.
“Keep bulbs shaded with material as opposed to with glass, unless you want to use the light source for reading,” advises Rohan. “If you’re a fan of reading in bed, directional wall lights are far more effective than a wall or table lamps with lampshades, but they are far less equipped to create warm, ambient light. Consider whether you have room to install both.”
3. Placing rugs bedside the bed
Whether your bedroom is carpeted or has wooden flooring a thoughtfully placed rug beside the bed ensures an extra layer of comfort underfoot, from the minute you step out of bed.
This is then also the last texture your feet will feel before you step into bed despite the flooring trend chosen for your bedroom, ensuring your comfort levels are perfectly aligned for feeling cosy when in bed.
“I always recommend using carpet in the bedroom,” says Jennifer, when explaining how to create a cosy feel. “Failing that at least laying a rug under your bed, particularly a deep pile.”
“The fibres and texture will give your bedroom flooring a homely, comforting look, as opposed to the hard floor. This will also feel warm underfoot when getting out of bed on those dark, chilly mornings.”
Bachelor of Design and founder of award-winning online interior design service ‘The Mini Interior Design Company.’ As an interior designer, Jennifer is an expert at dressing homes for her clients, adept at dealing with the nuances of home design.
4. Adding extra layers
Layering the bed with extra throws and cushions not only ensures you feel warmer while you sleep, but they also help to soften the overall aesthetic of the room and in turn, make you feel more cosy.
Tactile and inviting layers to snuggle beneath make you want to hibernate and retreat in pure unadulterated comfort. Choosing one of the best electric blankets or a weighted blanket is sure to make you feel even cosier.
“When it comes to materials and fabrics you want to lean towards warm, natural materials such as linen and wool,” advises Rhiannon. “Not only will both keep you toasty throughout the winter, but they’ll add a level of depth and texture to any area of your home.”
“Layering your soft furnishings will help to create cosy nooks in areas such as beds and reading corners. Try gently draping throws over the end of your bed, and layer your pillows with scatter cushions, paying little attention to neatness.”
5. Piling on the cushions
In addition to welcoming extra warming layers look to incorporate more scatter cushions to provide an extra level of cosy comfort. Ignore the guidance on how many cushions you should have on a sofa because more is more when it comes to dressing a cosy bedroom.
“Make scatter cushions plentiful,” says Jen. “Extra cushions are magic when it comes to creating a cosy look. A bed, in particular, looks so warm and inviting when it is decorated with an array of scatter cushions. The added layer of squashy textiles instantly resonates with comfort, making you want to climb in and snuggle up.”
Add additional scatter cushions to any bedroom seating too, this creates the same inviting appeal to sink into.
DKNY Chunky Square Scatter Cushion
£55.99 | This basket weave design is ideal for adding an irresistibly tactile element to a bed or bedroom armchair.
Heal’s Velvet Cushion in Sage Green
From £45: Heal’s stunning velvet scatter cushions are the perfect choice for adding an elegant touch of cosiness. We love this sage green colour but they are also available in Rust; Teal; Ochre and Claret.
6. Changing to a warmer duvet
Feel instantly cosy and warmer by changing your summer duvet for a warmer winter version. “When choosing a duvet thickness, consider your personal preferences and sleeping environment,” says Lydia Lloyd, textile designer at Marks & Spencer Home.
“Most bedrooms have a temperature between 18-21 degrees and in this instance, a 13.5 tog duvet should be suitable. However, if you are sensitive to the cold or find that your bedroom drops below 18 degrees, a 15-tog duvet may be required.
“The term ‘tog’ simply refers to the measurement of how effectively a duvet insulates heat, therefore the higher the tog, the warmer you should feel.”
7. Welcoming flickering candlelight
Soft, flickering candlelight holds the key to creating a cosy atmosphere in any room. While the best scented candles are ideal for scent-scaping a home to create the right ambience through fragrance we feel the best flameless candles are better for bedrooms.
LED candles offer all the charm of a flickering flame but without the safety hazard of an unattended naked flame should you fall asleep. Many also come with timers so they switch off automatically.
These modern candles can be placed on bedside tables or scattered around the room, on organised bookshelves; dressing tables or even on the floor in dark empty corners. Because they are a safe alternative to real flames, the possibilities are endless.
8. Curating clutter with purpose
Be mindful that a homely environment feels more cosy than a streamlined empty gallery-like space. You don’t have to go out and out and adopt a maximalist decor and never declutter your home, it’s about finding a balance.
“Creating a lived-in, rustic-looking environment is the epitome of cosiness,” says Rhiannon. “A clinically clean and pristine home doesn’t create a calm, homely environment, in fact, it’s the opposite that will add that additional layer of cluttered cosiness to your home.”
“I’m not telling you to never tidy up or leave your bedroom in a mess, but instead, curate your clutter. Over-decorate shelving with vintage-style decor, display vintage books and keep your favourite clothing items out on a rail.”
“When it comes to making beds or laying throws and cushions, try to keep them looking a little undone. Don’t spend time trying to make them look perfect, instead make it look almost like you’ve just gotten up.
9. Layering window treatments
Choose cosy and insulating materials to dress your windows to ensure you completely shut the world out in order to immerse yourself in the cocoon and comfort of the warmth inside.
Drape curtains on either side of shutters or place a voile Roman blind beneath a roller blind. Layering window dressings not only improves insulation but also adds a cosy touch to the decor.
“Opt for naturally thicker fabrics like velvet and boucle,” suggests Victoria. “These materials excel at keeping the warmth inside and also serve as excellent barriers against noise and light, making them ideal for street-facing bedrooms.”
To actually keep your home warmer we recommend thermal fabrics. “Consider adding thermal linings to your curtains or Roman blinds to enhance their insulating properties. These specially designed linings provide an extra layer that significantly improves thermal resistance.”
10. Creating cosy corners
Much like curating ‘clutter’ there’s a lot to be said for filling empty spaces with comforting accessories, such as an armchair or occasional chair to create a cosy corner.
“Ensure spaces that are noticeably empty, are used, even if it is solely for visual purpose,” suggests Jennifer. “Large bare corners and lifeless wall sections can appear cold and uncomfortable. Utilise the emptiness with a fitting purpose to suit the room.”
“A cosy accent chair, stacked storage baskets or some styled shelves are all great solutions for an unfulfilled space in the bedroom.”
11. Welcome touches of nature
There’s been a real focus in recent years on the importance of nature to make us feel happier. When we think of cosy vibes, our mind often wanders to a rustic cabin retreat in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by trees.
“Think ‘cabincore’,” says Rhiannon. “In order to create the cosy ‘cabincore’ aesthetic, you need to hone in on inspiration from the great outdoors, particularly when it comes to materials and textures.” In addition to buying the bed plants online to welcome greenery, it’s also about the furnishings – similar to the Japandi bedroom ideas.
“The most important one is wood, as adding wooden elements to your interior is the perfect way to make a start on creating a cosy, earthy feel in your bedroom. You can start small by doing something as simple as hanging some reclaimed wooden shelving, or you can invest a little more and make a bold move such as adding some panelling to your walls.”
“When it comes to textures, you want to keep things feeling warm and rustic, so consider other materials such as brushed leather and stone.”
Rhiannon is head of brand at British bedding and lifestyle brand, Piglet in Bed. Having studied interior design at the British Academy of Interior Design before pursuing a career in interior brands, Rhiannon is the brand’s go-to person for spotting the latest interior trends. She can also regularly be found delving into the newest #homehacks on Piglet’s TikTok channel.
As well as providing the perfect setting to ensure a good night’s sleep our bedrooms should be the one room in the house that we can retreat when seeking some solace and alone time to reset. During the winter months that feeling goes hand in hand with the sense of hibernation and cosiness.