Easy DIY Home Decor Tips: How to Get Cozy without the Clutter

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When you think of the word “cozy”, what do you picture?  Most people seem to respond with blankets, fuzzy socks, a fireplace, maybe some hot chocolate and a book.  Sound about right?  Yup, I think so too!  But when you are in the process of creating your ideal home, how do you balance the need to both purge and nest?  Let’s take a look at some easy DIY home decor tips and get cozy without all the clutter.



First of all – if you are simplifying, decluttering or just creating your ideal space – GOOD FOR YOU!  As I’m sure you’ve recognized by now, it’s a journey, not a destination.  I’ve been working on my own simplifying and styling journey for several years. 

Like so many other healthy things in our lives, cultivating a style is a lifestyle, not a diet.  There’s no quick fix and you have to find what works for you.  Decluttering is NOT a one-size-fits-all solution, trust me.  I admire those that are true minimalists, but I am not one of them.  Nor do I strive to be.

Several years ago, I heard the term “cozy minimalist” and it really resonated with me.  I love cozy but I don’t like a lot of clutter.  Art on my walls is a must, but I don’t like papers all over my fridge.  I don’t have a huge wardrobe, but I like to have options.  I’m pretty sure you see where I’m going with this. 

Needless to say, when I heard about these people that called themselves cozy minimalists, I knew I had found my people!  Mostly because it simply meant that I could be ME, with my own style and my own choices!  As you may know, I’m a HUGE fan of tiered trays, but those often mean collectibles and knick-knacks.  But you know what?  I’m okay with that!  Because I’ve learned how to corral those items and display them in a meaningful way!

You can check out my favourite tiered trays posts here:

Easy DIY Tiered Tray Decor: Adorable Home Sweet Home Printable
How to Style a Tiered Tray for Fall
How to Make an Easy Painted Wood Bead Garland

If you’d love to get a tiered tray of your own to display your favourite small collectibles, these are the trays that I use in our home – these are affiliate links to purchase your own:


What do you actually NEED to be cozy?

So back to the question at hand – just how to get cozy without the clutter.  There are a few key items to this puzzle.

Easy DIY Home Decor Tips:  #1 – The Right Stuff

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t actually need to buy all new household gear EVERY season.  Throw blankets and pillows are good examples.  Every season, the stores roll out the new “colour of the year” in their attempts to get you to update your home.  Sometimes you do, and sometimes you don’t. 

My rule of thumb is this – instead of getting ALL the things, choose one or two pieces that really speak to you!  You can create a whole new theme that centres around a set of cushions or a beautiful side table.

And rather than worrying about what next season’s latest, greatest colour or style will be, aim to purchase products you know will last because of their classic style and good quality.  Base your decorating scheme on timeless shades and styles, like greys, whites and blacks.  That way, you can add pops of colour to freshen up your room without having to throw it all out and start over each season. 

A super-fast refresh for any room is throw pillows.  You can make your own for a fraction of the cost from the store:  Make Pillow Covers in 15 Minutes

Easy DIY Home Decor Tips:  #2 – The Right Space

Before you go out and buy all new furniture to fit your room and lifestyle, stop and ask yourself if you’ve really tried everything.  After two years in our old apartment, I FINALLY stumbled on the best layout for our living room.  It took me that long, much to my husband’s dismay, but it did eventually get there.  I’m pretty sure I tried about 7 different layouts before settling in.

Experiment with the layout in your spaces.  Create new “zones” in your rooms.  I took one open room and basically created two spaces – one area for tv watching and one for reading.  Instead of worrying about cutting the room in half, I embraced it, pulled the couch away from the wall and put my reading nook in behind it.  And I LOVED it.  I spent at least an hour there every morning, as it was not only a great reading nook, but it became the spot for my daily morning routine of personal development and journaling.

We also moved our daughter’s love seat and desk into our dining area and separated them from the remainder of the room with a large Ikea Kallax stand, turned on its side.  The result was far better than I could have hoped for, and she absolutely adored her “nest”.



In our current home, I’m working on the same notion.  Our dining room started out as my office, but I’ve since combined my office and crafting space, since it’s technically all my work!  As a result, I got my dining room back and I’m so happy with that space!

Play with layouts until they feel right.  After all, it’s a lot less money (and even less regret) than buying all new furniture because something doesn’t feel quite right.

Easy DIY Home Decor Tips:  #3 – The Right Mindset

Perhaps the most important piece of getting cozy in your home without the clutter is your mindset.  If you truly believe that you NEED all the stuff to create the right space, you may struggle with the concept of making do with what you have.  BUT, if you are open to giving it a try, you might just find that you already have everything you need.

What I found was that I had all the elements of the cozy home but I was missing the feeling.  I realized that in order to feel cozy, I need to slow down, sit down and enjoy it.  And these days, that’s enough for me.



Want to remember this?  Save “Easy DIY Home Decor Tips:  How to Get Cozy without the Clutter” to your favourite Pinterest boards!



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Hi! I'm Tanya

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