Winter is grey and horrid – Here’s how to cheer up your home cheaply

The nights are drawing in and it’s raining – yet again! It’s getting darker, dingier and gloomier by the day and I’m already missing the light evenings. Luckily there are plenty of things you can do to brighten up your home and cheer your indoor environment up for a cosier winter. Here’s five of them.

  1. Get a daylight SAD lamp –  Sunshine boosts your mood naturally, influencing your melatonin and serotonin levels to make you feel more awake and cheery. I work at home and my studio is two metres from our bedroom, so a session with my SAD lamp is a great way to start the day when it’s horrid outside. I don’t suffer from SAD but it certainly puts an extra spring in my step on these dingy mornings. Boots sell them, and they’re one of our most popular discount code partners.
  2. Clean all your windows inside and out – sparkling windows let more light in, and all it takes is elbow grease and time
  3. Introduce bright colours – vibrant colours make your home brighter and more positive-feeling. If your place is a masterpiece of low-key cool, add splashes of colour with cheap or hand-made cushion covers, bright throws and funky rugs. B&Q do a very nice line in lovely rugs and they’re cheap as chips compared to posh furniture shops. Alternatively, head for Ebay and enjoy a low cost rummage
  4. House plants are a great way to soften hard edges, add colour and sweeten the air indoors when your windows are firmly shut against the weather. Many of them are suitable for dappled shade and others actually dislike sunlight, perfect for indoor decor. Spray them regularly with cool water and gently polish the dust off the leaves with a soft, damp cloth to keep them happy and looking their best. Collect unusual and groovy planters from second hand shops and junk shops, using your imagination to make a splash. You can even use old boots and shoes for indoor planters. Some succulents flower in winter – the amazingly bright flowers on a Christmas cactus, for example, provides a blast of fabulous bright pink colour to brighten things up, and they’re really easy to care for
  5. Add brightly coloured vases from the 1930s to 1970s , which you can pick up from charity shops for next to nothing. Or start a collection of sparkly pressed glass bowls and vases, popular in the ’30s to 1950s, which are even cheaper and catch the light beautifully, throwing it around. If you’re lucky, you might even pick up real rock crystal pieces for the same price, which are even sparklier and look wonderful on windowsills