What is the first thing that comes to mind when you think of a style that says welcome? For most people, the answer is one word – comfort. When you or a guest enters your home, you want to feel comfortable. The overall style of the room people most often see first is what will welcome them to the home. This is usually the living room so it should be the room with the most comforting, welcoming style.
Color often sets the tone of a room. A welcoming room will be colorful enough to be pleasing but not glaring. If the room is too monotone in color, it may seem stark or sterile. A nice balance of color, often in earthy tones with a few brighter accents, works well to put people at ease.
Furniture also does a lot to indicate how comfortable and welcoming a room is too. Seating that looks comfortable will say welcome much more that seating that looks hard and uncomfortable. A living room set can be a couch and chairs with ottoman or a nice sectional that invites people to sit back and relax. A few large fluffy pillows will help create the welcoming effect. Too many and it seems too crowded.
A few well-placed end tables add to the effect and provide a convenient place to set down a cup or glass. A coffee table also adds to the effect. It is best that they be all wood. Glass tops look great but the concern that the glass may get broken can interfere with the welcoming effect you want. A nice solid wood often has a more welcoming effect. Bookshelves can be a nice touch as well. Place a few books that may be of interest to those using the room as well as a few pictures and knick-knacks for a nice homey effect.
Flooring is often a forgotten part of creating a welcoming style. Though most people automatically think of plush carpeting, a hardwood or laminate floor can be just as welcoming with the right rugs placed on it. The rugs can be just about any type as long as they go well with everything else in the room. Of course, feeling good underfoot makes a big difference.
Things to avoid should be a consideration. The room should not look stark or too metallic. Some people like the look of the chrome and vinyl but that does not always equate comfort to them either. Also, the room should not look to busy or cluttered with accents. This can have the effect of making people feel ‘pushed out’ of the room rather than invited in. With accents, too few and the room feels empty. Too many and it seems too crowded. Find a nice balance with a few well-placed accents and you will have a room that is inviting.
When you are deciding how to create a welcoming style, think of what makes you feel welcome and use that as your yardstick. If you feel welcome and comfortable in your home, so will others.