The holidays are now a memory, and everything has finally been put away — hopefully, following some “editing” that keeps the volume of your stuff in check and your shelves and closets clean and clutter-free. It’s time to hole up and prepare to cope with the worst that winter has to offer.
Many people spend a lot of time getting creative ahead of the holidays, crafting wreaths, ornaments and other items that brighten the home for entertaining. But you can continue to make your home a cozy place during the darkest, dreariest months of the year by letting your creativity run wild.
Visit the local thrift store for inspiration and raw materials. Many secondhand goods are supplied by generous donations to ClothingDonations.org from families like yours, and repurposing the items sold there helps fund programs that support the nation’s veterans.
When it comes to warmth, old sweaters can provide a source of warm cloth that helps keep other parts of the body comfy. The do-it-yourself blog Ecouterre suggests turning sweaters into slipper-socks; with just a few stitches, that old pullover will keep your pinky toes protected from drafty floors.
Old sweaters can also serve as the source material for handwarmers, vase holders and stocking caps, according to Design Bump. If you don’t have any sewing skills beyond a square knot, you can get a few yards of fleece fabric and make this no-sew blanket to hide under for a night of Netflix and warmth.
Another—slightly more complicated—idea from the Making Our Sustainable Life blog is to take old linens and sew dry grains inside to make a microwavable bed warmer. Bonus: In the hot, humid summer months that will be here eventually, you can use the same item as a bed cooler by throwing it in the refrigerator.
For those in older homes, Good Housekeeping offers 20 ideas for making “adorable” draft stoppers to place under doors. Pet parents, be forewarned: Many of these stuffed snakes will also be irresistible to dogs and cats. And if you happen to be a quilter, of course, you already know that the thrift store is a treasure trove of interesting fabrics and patterns.
If the weather has you housebound, in other words, there are lots of creative ways to keep winter’s chill at bay. Don’t despair: Try out a few of these ideas, and spring will be here before you know it. Stay warm!