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Whether we like it or not, autumn (and winter) is on its way, bringing cooler weather and darker nights with it. But what better way to embrace this seasonal shift than with some cosy living room updates?

Today, we’re going to be sharing some interior design tips on how to pull off a cosy living room design. Taking the lead from some of the latest seasonal trends (as well as timeless upgrades), we’ll give you all the ingredients you need to cook up a snug and soothing living space.

Go bold with neutrals

 

Photo by Alisa Anton on Unsplash

Neutrals aren’t typically renowned for their statement-making capabilities, but this year that’s changed.

Neutral hues like beige, grey, taupe and terracotta are standout colours this season and can make a refreshing change from cooler colour palettes like white. Mirroring the natural world outside, they bring an earthy, warm feel that’s perfectly timed for autumn.

To optimise their visual impact, keep the overall colour palette simple. Pairing one anchoring neutral hue with a complementary shade can help to break up block colours, giving it a softer, layered look.

For a classic comforting finish, soft clay-coloured walls with ivory woodwork and accents can transform your living room into a sumptuous space. For a more modern vibe, use eye-catching feature walls to show off your neutrals, like a pale grey wallpaper colour paired with a blush pink or an on-trend mustard yellow.

Turn up the heat

With cold weather on its way, getting your living room heating just right is key to creating the ultimate hunkering-down haven – and nothing makes a living room feel cosier than a real fire.

With the ability to command attention, fireplaces provide a natural focal point for living rooms of any size, so it’s time to make them roar.

For a practical and stylish option, a striking wood burning stove is guaranteed to give your living room that all-star treatment.

Whether you opt for classic black or gorgeous green, a stove that radiates style and heat is never a bad addition to your living room design, helping you to enjoy all the visual beauty of a roaring fire without the worry of a sooty hearth.

Embrace autumnal shades

Neutral hues are primed for giving living rooms a grounded and cohesive base, but unless you’re going for a monochrome masterpiece, there’s always room to add some popular autumnal shades.

To keep the colour palette warm and welcoming, why not introduce flourishes of spice-inspired hues like burnt orange, turmeric, mustard yellow and mulberry that match the natural colour changes outside?

Alternatively, give your living room a luxury edge using stunning jewel tones like cobalt blue and emerald green. Perfectly matched to pale grey or taupe, these rich hues are guaranteed to indulge the senses.

To ensure these hues don’t overpower the room and take the vibe from soothing and serene to busy and bold, use them in moderation as accents through your selection of accessories and soft furnishings.

Snuggle up with layers

During the cold, dark winter nights, we all crave (and deserve) some extra comfort. The introduction of different textures can be just what’s needed here, giving your living room a layered look that feels like a giant hug every time you enter the room.

To pull this off without the finished look feeling frumpy and cluttered, choose your fabrics and furniture wisely. These can be statement pieces like a new sofa covered with soft, sumptuous and on-trend boucle, velvet or corduroy.

Alternatively, use accent pieces to do the leg work, creating an indulgent and inviting space. A new statement rug, extra sofa cushions, throws and assorted accessories will create a wonderfully layered look.

While contrasting textures and finishes work well, you need to find the right balance, so don’t be afraid to play around with your positioning and fabric options before deciding on your final design.

Giving your living room some TLC this autumn could be the ideal way to ensure your home epitomises comfort when the cold sets in.

Whether your living room’s due a full overhaul or you just want to make a few updates in time for winter, we hope these ideas give plenty of seasonal inspiration to create a cosy and charming space.

Author bio

Alex Jones is a content creator for 1ClickWallpaper – one of the UK’s leading online suppliers of affordable wallpaper and decorating supplies, offering a huge online range of wallpapers, paints and decorating essentials.

charnwoodstoves

This blog is a review and closer look at the results of the Charnwood Wellbeing Survey 2021. A survey of over 1200 wood-burning stove users and the impact of stoves on their wellbeing. The vast majority of stoves owned by participants utilise Charnwood’s modern clean-burn technology and are EcoDesign ready.

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In recent years we have seen a move towards a greater understanding in society of mental health and the need for self-care. The lockdowns only brought this more into focus and it was no coincidence that stove sales rose steeply during this time. It was clear from our conversations with customers that there was a strong relationship between owning a stove and a happier home.

We recently conducted a survey of stove users to better understand the significant and unique benefits that wood-burning stoves provide their owners and family’s wellbeing. The response was phenomenal with 1227 users (we thank you all) providing deep insight into the wider benefits of owning and using a stove.
 
A whopping 93% replied, definitively, that their stove has a positive impact on their wellbeing, while the bar graph below shows the range of ways these benefits manifest.
 

Participants were then asked to elaborate on their choices, and we were overwhelmed with the response. You can view the Charnwood Wellbeing Survey Results here.

Here are some of the best responses that provide some wonderfully deep insight into life with a stove.

The benefits of a wood-burning stove to wellbeing

“The wrap round warmth the fire provides improves the feeling of well-being that no other heating system seems to provide.”

“The world seems much better with a stove! It has huge mental health benefit, particularly during pandemic “

“I live alone and work a very stressful and emotionally draining job. Coming home to my stove provides so much comfort, even in the absence of having someone to come home to. Literally couldn’t live without it.”

“I find the process of building and lighting the fire therapeutic and sitting watching the flames is very relaxing.”

“It helps me to switch off after work and also to consider things more clearly and calmly. It seems to warm my soul as well as my feet!”

Increases bonding and improves relationships

“My grandchildren ask for the fire to be on when they are having a hot chocolate on a frosty day.”

“Winter evenings with friends. Whenever we have visitors during the winter, we always make sure the stove is running as this usually ensures nobody will request the television be turned on, leading to an altogether much nicer atmosphere with people actually chatting and engaging much more, rather than staring at the screen.”

“After a day of sledging and building snowmen and having snowball fights with the family it was very relaxing and comforting for us all to warm up in front of the fire.”

“Chopping wood is a great way to relieve stress! Everyone congregates around the fire and the children like to help with the kindling etc. It just creates a special atmosphere.”

“The stove is the catalyst for family bonding, which helps with relaxation & mood improvement. It helps to unwind after a days exertions at work.”

“You can just gaze into the fire and be taken away from the stresses of work. It gives opportunity for the family to come together and talk. Talking just seems to come easier when siting around the stove.”

Digital detox – an antidote to the digital age

“Helps to switch off from the technology that takes over our everyday lives. You feel a sense of achievement when the first sparks ignite.”

“It’s extremely relaxing to sit by the fire and watch the flames dance away. So much so in fact, that we opted to cancel our Netflix subscription and we simply don’t watch it any longer. We’d much rather sit and watch the fire instead!”

“Sitting round the fire has become a special tradition. We’ve removed our technology from the living room and now have the fire and bookcase”

“We watch the flames not the TV (even the dog likes to sit and stare)”

“I sit on the sofa watching the flames. It’s better than watching tv”

“Mesmerising flame watching takes us away from our worries and concerns. The room has a focus that isn’t a screen and gives warmth with it.”
 

Stoves provide a real sense of security

“We love our log burner. It makes us feel warm, safe and secure. It helps heat the whole house, which has proved an asset in power cuts. Nothing beats sitting in the living room with the warmth of the fire in the depths of winter.”

“Lighting the stove after a walk by the sea during winter is a joyful experience. Has helped to alleviate the worry of power failures as we live in an area prone to electricity outage during bad weather. Just knowing that we have our lovely stove for independent heat and low light is fab.”

“Back up for central heating given no of power outages,”

“As an electric only house, we wanted a plan b during a power cut to heat the home”

“more efficient than previous coal fire and, in extremis, if gas supply fails or is too expensive, will provide warmth.”

“Having a wood burner means I am less vulnerable in power cuts. I can still have heating, boil a kettle, cook food if I need to.”

They cultivate a deeper connection to nature

“Worked in forestry for 36 years, just a natural thing to do, can’t beat a real fire.”

“Chopping and stacking wood is very calming and lets my mind focus on that one task. Building, lighting and getting the fire to the perfect temperature does the same and gives a real sense of achievement. It all makes me feel closer to nature.”

“For me, sitting around a real fire has a deep connection to something ancient.”

“There’s something deeply Primeval about lighting a fire and benefiting from its heat. Every time you light it there is a deep sense of satisfaction”

“Splitting logs gets me outside and keeps me active, which is good for my body and mind. There’s also a great sense of satisfaction in getting the wood pile ready for winter, and I’ve also learned a lot about different types of wood and how to manage trees sustainably.”

“Watching the stove in full display is almost hypnotic and has great relaxing properties. It also has a back to nature feel and without any electrical devices in the room is perfect for de stressing.”

Making special occasions even more special

“Christmas Day spent with all the family and grandchildren gathered around our stove brings happy memories all year round.”

“Christmas especially. The stove just provides a much-needed atmosphere on a cold winters night. You feel relaxed, cosy and there is something about it that just welcomes you into the living room. I couldn’t live without it.”

“It’s a ritual on Christmas morning to rekindle the stove, and to unwrap the presents without a fire is unthinkable. There’s something magical about children in their pyjamas sitting on the rug in the cosy space in front of a blazing stove.”

“My young nephew visited at Christmas & we built the fire together. It was the first time he had ever lit a real fire. We celebrated with toasting marshmallows! It wasn’t just building a fire – it was building a memory.”

Conclusion

This survey is the first of its kind (that we know of at least) and brings real weight to the argument in favour of wood-burning stoves beyond their already strong heating and environmental credentials. When having the debate on the viability of various home heating solutions, we should recognise the powerful effects that wood-burning stoves have on wellbeing – effects that no other heat source can replicate.

If mental health and wellbeing are, as we believe, important considerations that are rightfully getting more attention, then it is vital that this is properly considered when arguing for and against all types of energy solutions. Let’s be clear, the experiences discussed above are nothing short of what makes life worth living – we shouldn’t downplay or underestimate the important role wood-burning stoves play in people’s lives and the positive knock-on effect to society.

 

Read More:

The Truth About Wood Burning Stoves and Air Quality

charnwoodstoves

Interior design can have a dramatic impact on the overall look and feel of a room, but this doesn’t always require a complete overhaul of a space – or even super matchy-matchy decor, for that matter. No, often it takes just one or two key features to transform a room from bland to beautiful.

Want to know more? Well, luckily for you, today we’ll be sharing a number of focal feature ideas for different areas of the home that are guaranteed to completely change a room’s ambience. From eye-catching staircases to cosy boiler stoves and more, we’ll show you how just one focal feature can steal the show.

1. Use stairs to create heavenly hallways

There’s no escaping the fact that most hallways simply serve the purpose of ushering people through to the more exciting rooms. However, as the gateway to your home, let your hallway be the star of the show for a change, using your stairs as an eye-catching feature.

If you have the space and budget, one idea is to install a fairytale spiral staircase. Curving around as you ascend to the next level brings something magical to a typically mundane act, as well as creating a stunning focal point for your home.

For more traditional staircases, why not use colour to accentuate their natural beauty? This could be brightly coloured carpet runners or a bold wallpaper print used on the back of stair treads. You could even go for painted stair treads or spindles in an ombre effect for a more playful look. The key here is to pair bold tones and patterns with pale, neutral hues like white, light grey or cream to allow the colours to speak for themselves.

2. Create a focal feature with fire

Fireplaces are a tried and tested focal feature in many homes, and for good reason. Back in the olden days, they were the place to gather to keep warm and cook, but in modern homes they offer the perfect opportunity to make a stylish design element – regardless of whether the fireplace is functional or not.

If you’re blessed with a traditional-style open fireplace with a mantlepiece or chimney breast, bring it bang up to date with a colourful makeover. This could be embellishing the hearth with patterned tiles or giving the fireplace itself a fresh coat of paint. If the fire isn’t usable, don’t leave it empty. Use candles, flowers or other decorative ornaments to draw the eye in and transform it from a functional element of the room to an integral design piece.

Of course, open-fireplaces aren’t your only option. If you’re looking to give your living room a cosy feel, then a free-standing stove could be the way to go. With models available in a choice of colours and styles, you can give the heart of your home that centrepiece it deserves. Finish your design with a collection of stove accessories like a funky wood basket and a sumptuous rug laid in front of the fire for soaking up that warm glow of an evening.

3. Give your kitchen the wow factor

Whatever set up you have in your kitchen, this busy room is primed for making a style statement in your home – and it doesn’t require a full-scale kitchen makeover either. Instead, pick one key feature to update and let this be the core focus of your kitchen interior.

As the workhorse of most kitchens, we love the idea of making your kitchen worktops do more than just food prep and display various kitchen appliances. With a simple countertop update, you can transform the entire look and feel of your kitchen without even having to consider replacing any other integral pieces like cabinets and appliances.

For a timeless look that can be adapted to both classic and contemporary kitchen design, sleek and elegant granite worktops are a sensible choice. Not least, they’re incredibly durable and practical, meaning they’ll stay looking pristine and beautiful for decades with minimal effort, but also the wide choice of colours gives them incredible versatility to suit almost any decor style.

4. Let original features shine through

Whether you’re updating your bedroom, living room or kitchen, sometimes you don’t need to invest in adding new decorative details to a space to give it a fresh new look. Stripping back rooms to accentuate their original features can work equally as well in altering its aesthetic.

If your property has some quirky original features like exposed brickwork, wooden ceiling beams or vintage parquet floors, let these features come to the fore. You may think this will only work if you love rustic or industrial interiors, but you’d be wrong.

Contrasting old and new interiors correctly can make these design elements even more distinctive. Think a high-end modern all-white kitchen set against a striking red brick backdrop with pops of zesty coloured accents added in to soften the look. Or an ultra minimalist bedroom design that’s centred around original wooden floors, using a cool colour palette and simplistic decor to highlight its natural beauty.

Whichever avenue you choose to go down with giving your home defining focal features, we hope this gives you plenty of ideas on how to use one or two core elements in your interior design to transform the space.

Author bio:

Sophie Armstrong is a content creator for granite and quartz worktop specialists Burlington Granite who provide a full bespoke worktop solution by offering templating, cutting, polishing and fitting, all driven by 25 years of industry experience

charnwoodstoves

As the heart of the home, the kitchen is the perfect place to pay attention to when it comes to your interior design. If you love to spend time whipping up a culinary storm and dining together as a family, it makes sense that you give the kitchen the touch of TLC it deserves when it comes to decorating. In the name of creative inspiration, we’re here to help. Today, we’re looking at 3 reasons you should consider bringing a fireplace into your kitchen design - offering tips and advice along the way so you’re left with a space the whole family simply loves spending time in.

1. It can be stunning focal feature

Unlike most other rooms in the home, the kitchen serves several practical purposes, and this means that the appliances often act as the focus points in this space. While you might have an attractive looking fridge or top-of-the-range washing machine, it’s unlikely that you want to draw attention to functional appliances when you’re considering interior decor.

By bringing in a fireplace, you can accessorise the borders and hearth with fireplace tiles to completely transform the look of your kitchen and make the fireside the focal point. A wood burning stove, acts as an eye-catching feature in its own right. However, you can always add the finishing touch by having a basket of wood and any pokers or accessories beside the stove.

2. It will provide warmth in winter

When the winter months set in, home cooked food is what most of us crave. But preparing to spend potentially hours in a frosty kitchen doesn’t hold much appeal, especially when you can be sitting snug and cosy with your throws by the fire in your living room – so how do you remedy that? Bring the fire into the kitchen, of course!

Heating your home using your kitchen fireplace can also be a way to keep energy costs low. Most modern stoves today are highly efficient and very clean burning. From wood pellets and firewood to mineral fuels, there are several options available to you when it comes to using your fire, so you can spend some time figuring out the best option for your home.

3. It will create an atmosphere

Last but not least on our list of reasons for adding a fireplace to your kitchen is the atmosphere that this can create. A fireplace can add character to a room that has perhaps previously been all about being functional. While it still provides a purpose, it can be an attractive centrepiece even when not in use.

If you’re lucky enough to have space for a dining table and chairs in your kitchen, a fireplace could be the perfect finishing touch. In the winter evenings, you can light it up and allow the warm glow of the fire to bathe the kitchen in an ambient light as you eat together as a family. In summer when the fire isn’t needed, use the hearth to display candles and freshly picked flowers.

By choosing to have a fireplace in your kitchen, you can create a truly unique focal point that is practical, yet gives off bags of aesthetic appeal.

Author bio:

Suhayl Laher works at Tiles Direct, one of the UK’s largest independent tile distributors and retailers – bringing design inspiration to homeowners, architects and developers.

charnwoodstoves

The Isle of Wight has been home to Charnwood Stoves since 1972. It was also the original home to England’s most creative, colourful and award winning music festival, Bestival. We caught up with the Bestival’s co-founders (and Charnwood stove owners) Josie & Rob da Bank.

Q: WHAT MADE YOU MOVE DOWN TO THE ISLE OF WIGHT?

A: Josie: Bringing three boys (Arlo, eight; Merlin, six and Miller, four) up in London is not really appropriate; we have got a much bigger garden; we prefer it and the festival’s here. Rob: It’s the freedom. The weekends in London you’re left panicking about what you are going to do next and what to do with the kids whereas here, it’s a much more relaxing place to bring the kids up. I love being out in the fresh air, sailing and being in Yarmouth.

Q: CAN YOU TELL ME A BIT ABOUT THE HISTORY OF THE HOUSE AND THE ARCHITECTURAL STYLE?

A: Rob: The house was built in 1750; it was an outhouse to the farm which is next door. I have seen a photo of it in the 1800’s when it was a bee keeper’s cottage so it has been through loads of iterations into the current house! It’s a really old property with a lot of stone, but Josie has designed new bits so it’s a marriage of old and new that suits our style which is a mixture vintage, brand new and shabby chic.

Q: WHAT FORMS YOUR DECORATIVE STYLE AND WHERE HAVE YOU SOURCED FURNITURE FROM?

A: Josie: I don’t think we have a style, we buy things that we like and it all just gels together. A lot of the furnishings and carpets have come from our travels to India and Morocco. There is quite a lot of animal reference in the house; I think that’s because of the children love animals! I’ve commissioned a few animal heads; Emily Warren has made the ones which sit over the fireplace. We have a few mosaics which were made by another good friend, who is a Mosaist. There are a lot of textiles; I really love fabrics by Josef Frank and Liberty London. Rob: and we have some nice stoves from Charnwood!

Q: COULD YOU TELL US ABOUT EACH OF YOUR STOVES AND HOW THEY FIT INTO THE STYLE AND FUNCTION OF THE ROOM?

A: Rob: We bought the Cove 1 first, four years ago when we built the extension. This is an old house, in the summer it’s lovely but during the winter it can get really cold. We have underfloor heating but we wanted a centrepiece as much as a stove so in the winter it serves a dual purpose: it looks great and it’s heating the room! All year round, it’s a great centre piece for the room, especially when you’ve got the fire going and the sun is setting out the window, it’s quite peaceful.

The other stove we have is the Tor Pico, I love the 360˚view of the fire and how it can heat half the house in a very short amount of time. I think that sometimes we are definitely style over content but we love the way the stoves look just as much as using them and they are a great addition to the house.

Q: WHAT’S YOUR IDEAL WINTER’S DAY AT HOME?

A: Josie: Our dream day at home would involve having all the children nice, calm and relaxed. Then a few board games, a dip in the hot tub outside and then a cosy dinner around the fire.  Rob: We are surrounded by great places like Bouldnor Forest, Newtown creek and the river Yar so we’ll quite often go for a walk or a bike ride then pile back inside and get the fire stocked up.  The boys like making the fire, there’s something about the crackling and building of the fire, especially for the boy’s- maybe it’s a primal urge! It’s a lovely thing that takes them away from the iPad and television. I love the whole process of chopping up the kindling and preparing the fire and it involves the boys as well.

Q: FINALLY, WHAT YOUR SOUNDTRACK BE TO LAZING IN FRONT OF THE FIRE?

Rob: Where I work with music, to have no music is quite a luxury. Josie: Especially here, we have so much wildlife to listen to!  Rob: We have a lot of different species living in the garden like owls, woodpeckers, Indian runner ducks, chickens and geese. After three years here the novelty of the wildlife still hasn’t worn off and I don’t think it ever will. We’ve got the crackling of the fire, the whistling of the wind and the nature sounds. Just to sit and listen to that is music really.

Sourcebook

www.bestival.net

www.thestealthyrabbit.com

www.libertylondon.com

www.artontiles.co.uk


charnwoodstoves

Nestled in amongst the rolling hills of Gloucestershire’s Cotswolds lies Jess and Rob’s countryside retreat. Within the calm, comfortable interior of their home the couple have imaginatively incorporated four Charnwood stoves. Here Jess talks us through her decorative style room by room.

Our house is situated in Hampen, a small hamlet that lies roughly 5 miles outside of Cheltenham. We are central to the most beautiful area: we have the cosmopolitan hub of Cheltenham so close, yet we are in spitting distance of the gorgeous market towns of Stow, Bourton and Northleach.

The house is constructed of Cotswold stone and lies within 5 acres of grounds.
The central part of the property dates back to the 16th century, but has been added to and remodelled several times. The previous owner extended it to the home it is today. It was always a beautiful house, however we wanted to put our stamp on it so before moving in we undertook the two month renovation to bring it up to what it is now.

The interior is I suppose my little bit of the Hamptons in the Cotswolds. I love vintage French chic, eclectic furnishings and Scandinavian antiquities. I wanted a serene interior, with unusual antiques and pieces of interest. It is predominantly a family home though so needed to be practical. I adore a muted palate, but also want my house to feel warm and welcoming with a sense of ease. I found most furniture from The Old Cinema in Chiswick, various antiques stores in Tetbury, a good old boot market rummage and imported several pieces from my favourite holiday destination – Mykonos.  I also tried to use ethical, up cycled items where possible and used clay paint from earthborn throughout to give the walls a rendered feel.  My inspiration for the house lies Zoe Ellison and Alex legendre and their design philosophy, check out their store in Brighton I Gigi.

The kitchen is the heart of my home, as is most peoples. It is where I cook, bake, feed my family, read with my dogs and drink wine! It has to be cosy. My dogs stretched out in front of a dying fire, means I don’t feel guilty tucking them up at night.

My bedroom burner was the ultimate luxury. On a bitter day there is nothing better than lighting it, getting a cracking family movie and snuggling down as a family. It is also cracking when your full of a cold and feeling sorry for yourself.

The snug is my little haven. Somewhere I go for peace and quiet. I wanted somewhere I could read or study that had no television and no distractions. It is also where our Christmas tree goes, and where we hang the stockings. A wood burner was essential here and is a real luxury.

The sitting room is our adult only room, it is where myself and my partner relax and have very rare time to ourselves. We love to watch a movie and chill out with a cheeseboard. We find our fire is perfect to warm up the cheese and keep a hot toddy warm. It is lit every evening we can, and the dogs all stretch out on the sheepskin. No room on the sofa’s for four!

Our Perfect Day

Breakfast in bed with the wood burner blazing. Smoked salmon with scrambled eggs and a Buck’s Fizz if I may!

Wrapping up and taking the kids out for the day, we love fishing, visiting the local farm park, taking our dogs for a walk or playing on the tractors in the garden.

Coming back and Rob cooking his legendary roast in the kitchen, I can curl up with a book in my big chair by the fire, draped in all the dogs. The kids will bomb around the house!

Eating our roast in the kitchen, then we will ultimately give in to the kids and put a fire on in the main sitting room and watch a movie all together. Preferably, with a hot chocolate and a massive bowl of popcorn. Just heaven.

Sourcebook

www.theoldcinema.co.uk

www.igigigeneralstore.com

www.earthbornpaints.co.uk