15 Ways to Brighten Your Home During Winter

Winter doesn't have to be dark, drab or dull. Use these inexpensive ideas to brighten up your home this winter and it'll be spring before you know it.

1 / 15
Smart light bulb jokes
Photo: Shutterstock

Swap Light Bulbs

Check to see what type of light bulbs you’re using. There is quite a bit of difference between cool white and warm white, so you may find a simple switch could add new brightness to your space. The best way to do this is to take one of each type of bulb and test it out in a room at different times of day.

Follow these decorating tips from design guru Steven Sabados.

2 / 15
Painting of sunflowers
Photo: Cranach/Shutterstock

Hang Bold Artwork

Think colour when it comes to artwork. Hanging a couple bold pieces of artwork in a room will brighten things up this winter (and throughout the year!).

Find out how to start an affordable home art collection.

3 / 15
Window screen
Photo: Africa Studio/Shutterstock

Remove Screens

Unless you live where it’s warm throughout the winter, you don’t need the screens on your windows year-round. Remove window screens and you may be surprised by how much more light streams into your home.

Check out these home maintenance tips for winter.

4 / 15
Attractive woman painting bedroom wall
Photo: lenetstan/Shutterstock

Use the Right Paint Colour

Painting a room a light colour will make the room look bigger, but pops saturated colour can make it feel brighter. Consider adding a bold colour to an accent wall. You can also paint the ceiling a bright white to lighten up the room even more.

These are the 10 most popular paint colours on the Canadian market.

5 / 15
Modern living room
Photo: Artazum/Shutterstock

Use Light Slipcovers

Dark furniture can make a dark room feel gloomy. Instead of buying new furniture, invest in a light-coloured slipcover for your couch or loveseat to help brighten up the space.

Don’t miss Amanda Forrest’s wallet-friendly furniture facelift.

6 / 15
Flowers in a vase
Photo: Africa Studio/Shutterstock

Display Flowers

Fresh flowers add a pop of colour and life to an otherwise dark and dull space. Brighten up your kitchen this winter with a vase of bright flowers and use a colourful arrangement to bring a fresh look to a living room or home office.

Keep your green thumb supple with our winter indoor gardening guide.

7 / 15
Living room
Photo: photographee.eu/Shutterstock

Add Accessories

Be smart about accessories. Accent pillows in a bold colour or pattern, a bright-coloured or white throw blanket and colourful fixtures will brighten up an otherwise dull room during the winter.

This nifty trick will humidify your home—without a humidifier.

8 / 15
Photo: photographee.eu/Shutterstock

Be Smart About Rugs

Does your area rug make the room brighter? If you have a dark rug, there’s a good chance it makes the room a little too dark in the winter. Try swapping it with a lighter area rug for the season or just remove it for a few months to let your shiny hardwoods reflect natural light.

9 / 15
Man with reading light
Photo: Stokkete/Shutterstock


Clutter can make a room look messy and even darker than it should be. This winter, take 10 minutes a day to declutter and stay organized.

Organize the whole house with these clutter-busting strategies.

10 / 15
Living room
Photo: Photographee.eu/Shutterstock

Bring the Outdoors In

Plants give life to any indoor space, so bring in some plants to brighten up a room this winter. If you don’t have a green thumb, there are plenty of plants to choose from that don’t require much care.

11 / 15
Window treatments
Photo: Ana Blazic Pavlovic/Shutterstock

Check Window Treatments

Are your curtains too dark for the winter months? Brighten things up with light-coloured curtains. You can also open up the curtains to let the sun in during the day, then close them at night to help keep the cold air out.

12 / 15
Photo: PhotoSGH/Shutterstock

Light Candles

Candles aren’t just for romantic nights or to add coziness to a room. Brighten things up by lighting some candles on the darkest of winter days. Battery-operated candles are a good option and they eliminate the fire risk.

13 / 15
Gold accents in bedroom
Photo: photographee.eu/Shutterstock

Go Gold

Gold brings brightness to a room. Look for gold picture frames, gold book ends or a coffee table with gold accents to make a room feel brighter during the winter months.

14 / 15
Man cleaning his kitchen
Photo: oliveromg/Shutterstock

Keep it Clean

Make a point to keep up on cleaning during the winter months. Windows that are free of grime, a crumb-free kitchen and a freshly vacuumed carpet or mopped floor will help keep a room looking bright and fresh.

Make your home shine with these genius cleaning tips and tricks.

15 / 15
Pink-hued room
Photo: Africa Studio/Shutterstock

Use Mirrors

Hang a mirror to help fill a room with natural light and make it brighter. To do this, hang a mirror opposite a window or sliding glass door so the light bounces off the mirror and floods the space.

Next, check out these brilliant design tips from Brian Gluckstein.

The Family Handyman
Originally Published on The Family Handyman

Newsletter Unit