Warm minimalism is the cozy cousin to the streamlined yet sometimes unwelcoming modern day minimalism. Learn everything you need to know about warm minimalism in this article!
Do you long to streamline your stuff, yet don’t want to feel like you are living in a cold and sterile medical room? This guide to warm and cozy minimalism will help you curate your belongings and reduce clutter. All the while you’ll also design a warm style in your home that is welcoming and homey.
What Is A Warm Minimalism Interior Design Approach?
Warm minimalism is the art of streamlining and reducing your possessions while using the items you DO have to create a warm, welcoming atmosphere. You can be a minimalist and create a cozy home at the same time… it is possible!
Warm minimalism allows you to curate your possessions into a manageable inventory while simultaneously staging your decor to be warm and welcoming. It truly is the best of both worlds!
New to minimalism? I recommend you first read this easy guide to minimalism here!
The beautiful headboard featured above was an Amazon find by Safavieh home and can still be found here.
Purpose Of Warm Minimalism Design
In order to create a warm and inviting home that still takes advantage of minimalism, it’s helpful to look at the elements of this decor approach.
A Warm Minimalism Design Approach Is…
- Serves your family and/or guests well
- Personalized to your tastes
- Illustrative of your family story
Keep in mind that decorating, like any art, is subjective. These are all tips but in the end… you do you!
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Tips for warm and cozy minimalism in your home:
There are many ways to achieve minimalism with your home without making it feel cold or sterile. I’ll walk you through these ideas and also provide examples and a few shopping tips!
Embrace Your Own Style
The popular face of minimalism seems to be a white room with almost nothing in it. (A mattress on the floor with one blanket and a single pillow, anyone?)
While this certainly may be one example of minimalism, it is not all encompassing. I strongly believe as homemakers we need to reclaim minimalism and make it work for our unique styles!
To make warm minimalism work for you, start with your own personal style and work from there.
Streamline your rooms first by getting rid of anything you don’t truly love or need.
But keep enough decor and elements in it to make it feel LIKE you. If you love teal, don’t get rid of that color! If patterns are your thing, embrace them!
The key to being a warm minimalist is maintaining the inventory that you can easily manage while still embracing warmth and personality in your home.
I personally love to be surrounded by vintage books, natural decor, living plants, my children’s artwork, and gentle pops of color on neutral backgrounds.
Bring In Warm Elements
If you have de cluttered your home and feel that your atmosphere does not feel welcoming and cozy, you may need to add more textures and colors.
I love a neutral white backdrop, but things can get sterile feeling very quickly if I don’t bring in any variety in texture, fabrics and decor.
Make Minimalism Cozy With These Easy Ideas:
- Blankets with varying textures, colors and patterns
- Pillows of all kinds and textures. Pillows can easily be recovered for a new look, so experiment!
- Mix and match textiles: a striped chair with a floral rug, as shown
- Lots of warm toned furniture: various tones of wood work especially well for warming a room
- Pops of color through collected art
- Books of all kinds! Vintage books especially add a cozy touch of character
- Flowers! Both fresh and faux, you can use flowers to make any room more welcoming
- Use warm light throughout your home- and lots of it!
Use Artwork That Is Meaningful To You
As a minimalist, your goal is to streamline your possessions to make them manageable and purposeful. But your own voice and creativity should not get thrown out in the donation pile!
To create a warm home that is still streamlined and minimal, choose your artwork carefully. Display that which is meaningful to you, and spend some time finding your treasures.
It has never been easier to find art that suits your unique tastes. You can find lovely, unique artwork on Etsy, at antique stores, and at thrift stores. Often times you can even find digital artwork available inexpensively that you can print and frame.
And sometimes, I happen upon a beautiful, mass produced piece of art inexpensively at a local store, like the field of flowers above. And that’s okay, use what speaks to you!
For A Cozy Vibe Decorate Your Home As A Family
We have slowly been decorating the boy’s room as a family. It was my husband’s idea to do a sports theme, and we all joined in on the project together.
I found this beautiful vintage magazine cover on Etsy and framed it gold for warm accents. (The boys love it!).
We bought the cute puppy pillows on a Sunday afternoon outing together. The fun memories of our shopping expedition (whilst I was about 40 weeks pregnant with child #4, no less!) add cozy and homey vibes to this room.
Although it’s been a slow process decorating together, I’m so excited for the final room. It will have curated design elements that speak to the teamwork and hobbies of our family.
Explore the idea of adding your husband and children’s ideas and creativity to your home for making the home extra welcoming + interesting. Nothing is more warm and cozy as a room that has been thoughtfully and lovingly personalized!
Embrace And Display Nostalgia
In addition to decorating with your own specially curated artwork, add in touches of nostalgia throughout your streamlined abode.
Framed degrees, photos of your children, books you’ve read many times, or a wall of children’s art proudly displayed. In our last home, we had a designated nature wall, and it was filled with beautiful treasures from our many nature walks.
All of these things can be thoughtfully curated to warm up a home based in simplicity. The trick is to display the best of the best from your collection of memories. Be sure to lovingly frame or display items for all the family to enjoy.
My sister in law has treasures from her many world wide travels scattered all over her home. I am inspired by how her home tells a story of her life’s adventures! This concept of displaying collected items that tell a story can be embraced with warm minimalism. Simply curate your collection well and intentionally display the best of your treasures.
How To Trouble Shoot Warm Minimalism
You may find yourself stuck at times on your warm minimalism journey. It can be a challenge to marry a streamlined decor style with coziness.
Typically this design approach has two challenges:
- You may still be overwhelmed with possessions and feel overly cluttered
- Or, your room may end up feeling overly bare and unwelcoming
Both of these situations have happened to me! When these situations occur, I go back to the drawing board and start fresh.
If the room feels crowded, not cozy, I look at what we have in the room and how it is serving the family. Often times a small change will transform the space (like de cluttering an overcrowded shelf).
If the room feels cold or barren, I try to add in pieces one at a time to warm it up. Often, it needs some color in the form of artwork or some texture in the form of a rug or blanket.
When you find yourself stuck in creating warm decor and de cluttering, try these tips:
- Experiment with furniture by moving it around
- Box up unneeded items
- Add in splashes of color for warmth
- Clean and refresh the space by removing any extra clutter
- Bring in new textiles (blankets, pillows, or a rug!)
I hope you found this article on warm minimalism encouraging. Please let me know in the comments how minimalism works in your home. What tips do you have for making it feel warm and cozy? As always, thank you for reading. -Jamie