Elements of warmth

IO-DeckerThe holidays are over, which means we’ve reached the heart of the chilly winter months. It also means that it’s that time of year when many people spend their days inside the home trying to keep cozy while wrapped in blankets or sitting in front of the fireplace. Avoid the winter blues and implement a few of these ideas to make your space as warm as possible.

Fireplaces are a winter staple, and new models can even be equipped with a remote control. These remote systems function using a receiver that signals the gas to ignite, making it easier than ever to start a comfy fire. Fireplaces can add a beautiful, functional touch to the living room, but also look great in both bathrooms and kitchens.

During the winter, the bathroom can often be one of the coldest rooms in the house, but it doesn’t have to be. Warm up by relaxing in a hot bath (bubbles and aromatherapy are optional, but highly recommended). Or, if you have dry skin, try taking a steam shower. Saunas have been shown to relax muscles, increase blood flow, moisturize skin and cleanse pores. And luckily, new kits are available on the market that make installation simple.

It’s certainly not fun to step out of a hot shower and be greeted by a blast of chilly air and frigid tile flooring. Soften the shock by installing a towel warmer. These warmers use electrical currents to gently warm towels hanging on bars or in drawers. Or you can warm things up in the bathroom is by installing in-radiant (or heated) flooring.

Here are a few simple ways to bring some warmth into the kitchen. Color can subconsciously make us feel warmer even if the actual thermostat hasn’t moved. Try to bring warm colors such as red, orange, yellow or brown into the room through flowers, pillows or other small decorative elements. Humidity can also make a room feel warmer and more comfortable. So try boiling a pot of water laced with liquid potpourri on the stove, which will make the room smell wonderful and eliminate dry indoor air.

As you can see, you don’t necessarily have to invest a great deal of money to keep your home toasty warm. It just takes a little creativity and few elements of warmth to get you through the snowy, winter months.

David Decker is president of The Affordable Companies, which provide affordable luxury in kitchens, bathrooms and flooring. They are based in Carmel (575-9540, www.the-affordablecompanies.com). Email home improvement questions to david.decker@the-affordablecompanies.com.

David Decker

David Decker is the owner of Affordable Kitchens and Bathrooms. You can contact him at affordablekandb.com.

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