8 Thrifty Ways to Warm Up Your Winter Decor

Warm up your home for the winter season with these simple and thrifty DIY projects for a classic and traditional winter decor style. 

How can I decorate in January? How do I style my house for winter? What do I decorate with after Christmas? How can I make my house feel super cozy during the winter months?

Do these questions sound familiar to you? If you love the warmth and glow of Christmas decor it can be hard to figure out how to transition to ‘winter decor’ after the holiday season is over. Even if you love the fresh feel of a clean home after the Christmas decorations are all put away, it can sometimes feel a little bare and empty, am I right?

I know I love the openness of our home after taking down the Christmas trees, but I always miss the cozy warmth that the holiday lights bring. So, to give our home a cozy feel during the long, dark, cold (and often very rain) months of January and February, I love to add some simple classic decor pieces that give warmth to our space. I’m sharing my thrifty ideas for winter decorating and how to add that extra little bit of cozy calm to our homes during the long winter months.

8 Thrifty Ideas For Winter Decorating poster.

Today I’ve joined a group of my talented blogging friends who are also sharing their winter decor ideas with you! Be sure to check out their posts at the bottom of this article!

12 Winter Decor Ideas poster.

Create cozy warmth with candles and candlelight

One of my favourite ways to add warmth during both Christmas and after, during Winter, is by using candles! Very few things give that soft, hygge warm glow and feel like candlelight does. I recently adapted my friend Sheila’s Christmas wooden dough bowl full of candles and create a similar vignette for our winter dining room…

A dough bowl with moss, pine cones and candles in it.

To make this I cut a piece of styrofoam so it could accommodate some taper candles that I picked up at Dollarama.

Styrofoam on top of moss with candles in the styrofoam.

Then I layered over a couple of varieties of Moss (from Dollar Tree) as well as some pine cones and berry twigs that I had in my fall bin.

A dough bowl with pine cones, purple berries and candles.

It makes a simple and pretty winter centrepiece, and adds beautiful light and warmth in the evening. Of course, as with any and all candles, make sure to keep your eye on it and do not leave candles unattended!!

Alternatively, you could buy flameless candles from Amazon and not have to worry about it at all!

Up close shot of the candles.

The lit white candles.

I’m also loving the look and feel of these pretty taper candles placed around our home on our mantel and on our dining room hutch. I found some beautiful old brass candlestick holders at the Sally Ann before the holidays, but not as many as I would have liked.

Candles on the mantel beside olive branches.

Rather than purchase more expensive new brass candlesticks, I decided I’d keep my eye out at thrift stores over time. Instead, I decided to upcycle some fifty-cent candle holders I also found at a thrift store with some brass/gold toned craft paint.

Plastic candle stick holders and paint brushes.

They have kind of a textured look to them after painting that I think adds to the vintage classic feel of our winter decor. Have you heard of Grandmillenial style? It’s a mix of classic and traditional styles updated with modern touches? I’ll be sharing a post with more details about it soon. But I think the taper candles are a perfect nod to Grandmillenial style.

The candle stick holders painted gold.

There are wooden beads on the fireplace mantel.

Add charm with free printed vintage style paintings 

I downloaded some new printables from the National Gallery through their Downloadable Images section. I’ll be sharing these as well as some more free art printables early next week on the blog! Another great source for vintage printable paintings is Etsy – check out a couple of my favourite shops – here and here.

Lit candles are in the gold candlestick holders.

In the kitchen, I printed out a couple of food themed vintage paintings available through the National Gallery.

A framed picture on the mantel.

Open shelves with a wooden cake stand, wooden bread boards, a glass cloche with pears under it and plates.

Above our bookshelf I printed another one through the National Gallery. As I mentioned, I’ll be sharing more about this free printable art next week!

A potted fern and magnifying glass.

Create character with vintage looking books 

I love the cozy feel of vintage hardcover books and they make a great styling piece on a bookshelf, coffee table, or in a small vignette. But they can be hard to find AND expensive when you do. Plus, they might not be in colours that really fit your cozy winter decor scheme. So, the solution is to make your own!

Vintage books with a magnifying glass on top of it.

I decided to turn some free castoff hardcover books into a pretty display piece by covering them with a few coats of Fusion Mineral Paint in light and fresh with a few coats of Casement. I love how this paint dries so quickly and smoothly, making this project a snap!

A book with paint beside it and a brush.

There is a framed painting on the wall.

Add warmth and light with mirrors and metallic finishes

I love how mirrors help to dance the light around your home during the dark winter months. Metallic finishes do the same kind of thing, as they are so reflective.

I finally decided to update the big (faux) wooden mirror that was a Facebook Marketplace find I shared in the Fall with gold paint. I simply used a few coats of gold craft paint, and then added some extra character to it with Fusion Mineral Ageing Wax.

You may remember how it started out…

A very large wooden mirror leaning against the wall.

A few coats of gold craft paint…

Painting the mirror gold.

Some ageing wax…

A container of aging wax.

Up close shot of gold on the mirror.

And voila!

It’s like a totally different piece! I love the way the mirror and the finish of it move light around in our dining room. Since it’s in the middle of the house it often feels quite dark in this space.

The gilded mirror on a hutch.

Include natural textures and wood tones 

Wooden beads, beaded garlands, wooden bowls, wood corbels, wood vases, baskets, and trays are all ways to bring in warm and natural textures and tones during the winter. This is a great way to keep your decor feeling cozy even if you like to use a lot of white or light neutrals in your paint, furnishings, or textiles.

Stone fireplace and wooden mantel.

Wooden beads.

Wooden beads in a wooden bowl.

A nature white framed picture.

Don’t forget to keep or include lots of greenery

Nothing adds life to a space quite like greenery – even if it’s faux! It adds texture and colour and livens up a space – reminding you that even if the outdoors look bleak and grey or are covered with a blanket of snow, there is life out there and spring will once again arrive! Live plants add oxygen to your space, but if you’ve got a black thumb then faux plants may be the way to go. Just make sure that you choose greenery and branches that look very natural and realistic so that your space doesn’t end up feeling tacky.

Vases with olive branches.

There are vases on the mantel.

Fire is on in the fireplace.

Display (and use!) all kinds of cozy textiles

We always keep a basket of cozy throw blankets handy during the winter months, and I love displaying cozy throws in our space as well. Textiles add texture and depth to a room and can help tie a space together through colour.

A blanket ladder painted white.

Up close shot of the light green blanket.

Turn off the overhead lights and turn on the lamps

When the evenings are so long, it can be really calm and relaxing to turn off the bright overhead lights and use the glow of table lamps instead. Combine lamps with the fireplace and candles, and you’ve got yourself one hygge room for a winter evening.

One thing I did this year that I haven’t done before I purchase a remote controlled plug for my Christmas trees. I then kept these plugs in the sockets and plugged my lamps into them after the holidays so that turning on our lamps is as easy as pressing a button on the remote!

A wooden shelving unit with a lamp on top.

A white vase with branches inside it.

This is the kind of remote plugin outlet that I’m using to make lamp lighting so quick and easy this winter…

I hope you found some winter decor ideas you can use to help you get through the next few long months of this sometimes dreary season. Be sure to check out my friends winter decorating ideas below!

More Winter Decor Ideas 

As I mentioned, today I joined some friends who are also sharing their winter decorating ideas! You can check out their posts by clicking on the links below each image.

Bloggers sharing their home decor.

Easy DIY Pom Pom Garland // Happy Happy Nester

Gold Ruffled Rimmed Bowl DIY // Craftberry Bush

Winter Decorating Ideas to Warm up Your Home // Maison de Cinq

Inspiring Winter Decor Ideas for Your Home // Just Destiny

Home decor bloggers.

Winter Farmhouse Living Room Decor // My 100 Year Old Home

3 Simple Winter Decor Vignettes You Can Make This Season // Robyn’s French Nest

How to Make Your Home Cozy for Winter // Pasha Is Home

Winter Decor Ideas // My Sweet Savannah

How To Decorate Your Home In January // Modern Glam

Cozy Winter Decorating Ideas // Tatertots & Jello

Effortless Winter Decor Ideas // Twelve On Main

Cozy Traditional Winter Decorating Ideas // The Happy Housie

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  1. Thank you for sharing your creative ideas! I love the warm, textured look you gave to those fifty-cent candlesticks; they’re on my “to do” list. The fabulous trio of blue-gray-green vases on the mantel…are they purchased or DIY? Love them!

  2. Did you use anything to stick the styrofoam in your dough bowl ? I have my grandmother’s bowl and don’t want to damage it. I love this idea. Thanks.

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