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Living Room Winter Decor Decorating Ideas

How do you turn a living room full of Christmas color and decor into a soft and cozy setting? Learn to create a warm and cozy winter palette with a few home decor guidelines for color, materials and texture. I’m showing you my winter decor decorating ideas for the living room.

After packing away the Christmas decorations, getting our home ready for the short winter months is the first task of the new year.

Now that the house is mostly bare and stripped-down, it’s time to decorate our dining room, living room, kitchen and breakfast room, and bedroom with a warm and cozy look.

Until a few years ago, I had never purposely decorated our home with a winter palette. I didn’t know if I would like it – I am such a spring and summer girl.

Happy to say that I actually loved the results. The house had a different look, but one that I’m so pleased with. So here for all the world to see are my winter decor decorating ideas – with a little help from Pinterest.

Since my first attempt at infusing our home with winter decor, I’ve continued the practice.

The basic elements of winter decor haven’t changed much in past few years. I continue to follow old and new winter decorating ideas, as well as my own decorating intuition. I surprised myself by the results.

Last week, I did some searching on Pinterest and found 13 great new ideas for winter decor that I know you will love.

Winter Decor Decorating: Ideas for the Living Room

I’m going to focus first on our living room since it’s the largest space and where we spend most of our time. Then I’ll continue with our kitchen and breakfast room, our dining room, and our master bedroom.

To be honest, here in North Texas, we don’t get much snow. We are more likely to get ice, which is awful. We can have beautiful, sunny days in the 30’s in the morning and by afternoon, it’s in the 60’s.

There have been times when I’ve had tennis drills at 9:00. I wore long tights, a tank top and a fleece vest over a heavy windbreaker. After 30 minutes, the vest came off; then the windbreaker came off, and I played the rest of the drill in a tank top. Then we can have days that are cold, damp, and bone~chilling.

When I think of winter, I imagine beautiful snow, tall pines and firs with snow drifts around them, and a sense of calm and quiet.

Last week we had temperatures in the teens – yes, in Texas. It definitely feels like winter.

Here’s the sense of warmth, coziness and quiet time that I created.

Happily, almost everything I used for our winter decor decorating we already had.

Winter Decor Guidelines

In browsing multiple posts and a few magazines, several common themes emerged and fortunately, they were easy to implement in our living room. Why?

  • the color palette is simple
  • the esthetic is casual
  • the materials used are natural and readily available
  • accessories you already have will work in the winter decor

Winter Decor Color Palette

When it comes to color in winter decor, minimal is the way to go. From September through December, we are inundated with color – reds, gold, orange, metallics, greens, and whatever your Christmas theme is. Our brains are on color overload.

For winter, we want a calm and minimal color palette. And that means white – lots of white. There are so many shades of white:

  • cream
  • ivory
  • ecru
  • beige
  • tan
  • eggshell

Think of all the elements that lend themselves to white.

  • pillows
  • throws
  • candles
  • flowers
  • dishes
  • accessories

Places to Use White

White ceramic vases on the mantle hold cotton stems.

winter decor mantel

White vases with white cotton stems.

On the coffee table, I used white cotton balls in a textured white planter. That adds lots of great textures from smooth to rough.

More white candles pair with a stack of natural-colored books. I used them everywhere I could.

White “sweater” pillows with pom~poms add color and texture.

More white ceramic pitchers and white books.

white pitcher and galvanized

A white bird cage.

white birdcage with green wreath

Natural Elements in Winter Decor

Next to white, natural elements lend themselves to this seasonal winter decor.

  • wood
  • baskets
  • signs
  • burlap
  • fabric
  • paper
  • candle sticks
  • ceramics
  • planters

Here are some natural elements.

Vintage wood spindle candlesticks. Books covered in adhesive-backed burlap. I love this stuff.

burlap books

Rustic stone planter with cotton balls. A little bit of green moss for filler and color contrast. I love the different textures.

Wood tobacco basket with gathered twigs tied with a natural fabric bow. I like this setting for the contrast in shapes and textures.

winter decor twigs in wood baskets

Twine~wrapped books. These have been on the coffee table and are now one the bookcase. I never get tired of them.

A brown craft paper covered book paired with a white candle.

Vintage stained wood box with winter greenery. One of my favorite things ever and this is my most favorite way I’ve ever used it.

Chalkboard stained wood frame with ChalkArt in Peace & Joy and stencils. (a A Maker’s Studio ~ DIY project to come.) I used 4 different stencils to create this sign. Any chalk sign adds a natural element to your decor.

white birdcage with green wreath

All these things are naturally in shades of beige, ecru, taupe, cream, browns, and natural wood tones. These elements have warmth to them.

Although I don’t remember this being mentioned, I stayed away from metallics. We love silver, gold and copper for the holidays, but they can have a cold vibe. I either put away my metallic pieces or moved them to the background.

The only metallic I included was this vintage galvanized “crate” because it has a warm matte finish.

white pitcher and galvanized

Greenery in your Winter Decor

I read in an article that you should pick one extra color besides white in your winter decor. The exception was no red since we just had our fill of that color during the holidays.

As my extra color and as a natural element for my winter decor decorating, I chose green. Both real and faux greenery gives a little pop of soft color to winter decor. The shades of soft greens give just enough contrast with the whites, creams and browns, but don’t jump out at you.

I did mix faux greenery with real. I had several pieces of greenery (not garland) that I did not use during the holidays. Throughout the living room, I mixed the 2 together to get the fullness I needed.

On the mantle, I mixed some greenery that I did not use from Christmas with real eucalyptus, tied with more of the natural ribbon.

winter decor mantel

More faux greenery left over from Christmas in the wood box. This is the easiest arrangement to make.

This faux wreath was a lucky find a few years ago. I have used it every year because it looks so real. This year it had a big pink bow and Christmas elves on it.

I like the idea of a bird in the wreath plus the contrast of white with green and the different textures.

white birdcage with green wreath

Mantel Winter Decor

Here is the mantle after all the Christmas decorations were removed and before the winter decor. Poor thing. Bare and so sad.

empty mantel

For the complete mantle today, you can see how the elements of white, natural materials and greenery work together. Shape and pattern play a role here.

winter decor mantel

Ceramic vases – flea market finds
Cotton stems – on left, from Roundtop 2015; on right, purchased at Hobby Lobby, 50% off (I think I’m going to combine the two and mix them up for a more equal look.)
Books with burlap covers – DIY project, on hand
Glass vase with wood bead handle ~ Kirkland’s from 2017
White candle – battery-operated from Rutherford’s, a local design store 2014
Vintage wood spindle candlesticks – Ballard & Blakely, Dallas, on sale
Greenery ~ faux from Hobby Lobby, eucalyptus from Trader Joe’s

Bookshelf Winter Decor

After removing all the Christmas decorations, the bookshelf looked like this. Plain Jane and Bare Betty.

blank bookshelf

The bookshelf is a such a big focal point in our living room that it has to be decorated for winter. It is a major part of our living room decor. The greenery adds that winter decor style that I love.

winter decor bookshelf

Books – on hand
Burlap bags – a freebie
Wood frame, ChalkArt and stencil -A Maker’s Studio
Cypress wreath – Mary Cates and Company, Dallas, on sale
Birdcage – flea market
Remington Sure Shot Vintage Box – estate sale
Greenery ~-Hobby Lobby, on sale
Lamp – I think Target, but might have been At Home, 2017
Tobacco basket – Joann, on sale, 2017
Twig branches – Joann, on sale, 2019
Natural ribbon – in my Christmas wrapping box
White ceramic vases – flea market
Galvanized metal crate – I think Roundtop 2015

Coffee Table and Sofa Winter Decor Decorating

The coffee table called for a simple arrangement. I brought out our coffee table books and added the stone planter, cotton balls, and white candles.

Nothing was new here, but I love the textures and candles. Obviously, the pillows from a few years ago (Target, but I added the pom~poms.) add white, texture, coziness and comfort.

On the sofa, I also added a big throw.

Confession: the throw is actually two yards of fabric from Joann that I have used as our tree skirt occasionally. Once I removed our Dicken’s Village, I just shook it out really well. It is so soft.

winter decor coffee table

If you are in the mood to create a calming, cozy winter decor for your home, I hope these winter decor decorating ideas and photos have given you some inspiration.

And please, PIN it for your winter decor decorating inspiration. For more winter inspiration, visit my Winter Decor Pinterest Board.

pin for later graphic in blue
winter decor decorating
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  1. Carol, your Winter décor is just beautiful! Love what you have done! Your home is just so lovely! I always enjoy your posts. Your DIY’s are great and you do such a wonderful job of explaining everything. I, too, enjoy doing Winter touches throughout our home. We live in Manitoba, Canada and we built our retirement home overlooking a lake and an island. This year, our lake as 4 1/2′ of ice! It is so pretty this winter to look out and see the peacefulness. Our Pine trees look so nice with all the snow on the branches. This has been a real change for us to be home here this year for winter! It was -40 this past week with a wind chill of -50! So, we are definitely missing our time on South Padre Island, Texas. This is the first time we are home in the last 15 years. However, hopefully, we can go next year. Have a great week!

  2. Love that “throw” trick lol Your home looks beautiful! I especially love the natural color palette and use of natural decor. I have a similar old wooden box and I love using it for greens in the winter as well. Love that blue lamp. Thanks for the tips and for sharing at Vintage Charm. xo Kathleen|Our Hopeful Home

    1. Kathy, I really appreciate your feedback.You are always so sweet to mention a link up. You’re the second person who mentioned that they have a wooden box. There are probably more of them out there that could be put to good use. Have a great week.

  3. I also have a truly antique wooden box that I’ve used for books on the floor for years. I may move it up to a table and feature it thanks to your idea! The box is from the Lautz Brothers Soap company. These were the men of our family who came over from Darmstadt, Germany in the 1800s.

    1. Nancy, I’ve had that box for maybe 30 years and never thought before to get it off the floor. For years we stored the kids’ movies in it. It’s been empty for quite awhile now and I was so happy to put it to good use. Thanks so much for visiting and commenting; I really appreciate it.

  4. Your home is lovely and cozy for winder. After Christmas my house seems to need a little something so your post inspired me to add a bit of greenery. Happy New Year, Kippi

    1. Chas,this is the first time I remember intentionally decorating for winter, but it won’t be the last.I love the warmth and color it created. It will last until spring! Thank you for dropping by and your comment.

  5. I love your cozy look. I am more into color. As I suffer from mild seasonal affective disorder (there is NOT enough winter sunshine in Maine and I am NOT a winter-outdoors person to start with), color is a cheap upper to me!. MY small tree is not down yet but I did hang a pastel Valentine garland that I made in the archway. At least it made me take the Christmas cards down; I have made a start. At the rate I’m moving, I think I will just graduate to some Valentine’s colors; there is too much for neutrals outside as it is; snow is supposed to turn to freezing rain; that’s OK, I’ve got plenty of groceries and projects!

  6. Love your winter look. The self-adhesive burlap and twine wrapped books are the best. I’ve tied books with twine but never seen the self-adhesive burlap. Everything looks cozy.

  7. I just love that wood box! Your home looks so pretty all decorated for winter. I put away all my Christmas decor and am enjoying the clean, fresh look but I feel like I need to add something already! So far, only a few pinecones made it out, but I love your ideas! Happy New Year!

    1. Shelly, you are so sweet! Actually, I almost didn’t buy that box, but I’m so happy that I did. There are several Christmas decorations I packed up and realize I could have kept them out for winter. Next year I’ll know better.