Expert Tips for a Comfortable Home

We asked our favorite designers to share what makes a room comfortable -- and what simple luxuries they can't give up.


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Living  room with lamps
1/15
Good Lighting

    The most important thing of all is lighting. It should come from lamps, not overhead. So many people forget about it or don't realize the significance of it. Warm, cozy lighting on a dimmer -- always.

    --Laura Hunt, laurahuntdesign.com

2/15
Smart Side Tables

    You wouldn't think of side tables as adding comfort, but they do, because they give everyone in a room a place to put their drink. I think coasters make people feel comfortable, too, because they not only say stay and have a drink, but they remove the worry from guests of wondering if it's safe to put down a glass.

    --Grant K. Gibson; grantkgibson.com

3/15
Room for All

    I can't life without my kitchen farm table. The table has two built-in drawers, one for flatware and one for napkins, so casual entertaining is a no-hassle event.

    --Annette Joseph, ajphotostylist.net

4/15
Inviting Seating

    Everyone needs a super-cozy chair or chaise that hugs you when you sit on it. A pretty chair is not necessarily a comfortable chair, so a "me" chair is a must.

    --Jonathan Ranchman, fleurtstyle.com

5/15
Piles of Pillows

    I love pillows, generously scaled, plump, full pillows. On a bed, in a chair, perched on a sofa -- I think beautifully finished pillows add a coziness that's easy to layer into a space at little cost.

    -- Patrice Cowan Bevans, pcbinteriors.com

6/15
Plush Bedding

    I would be in such dread without my down comforter with Egyptian cotton duvet. Not only does it look fabulous, but it keeps me so warm and cozy.

    --Nadia Geller, nadiageller.com

7/15
Dining Room

    Our dining room table and chairs. We have weekly dinner parties for friends and they always take place around this table, which belonged to my great-grandfather.

    --John Loceke, jloeckeinc.com

8/15
Versatile Seating

    Comfort is all about practicality to me. I love to have extra floor pillows in a room. You can store them in a trunk, but it's nice to use them for extra seating or stacked as a foot rest.

    --Jonathan Rachman, fleurtstyle.com

9/15
Window Treatments

    The addition of beautifully finished drapes or shades are to a room what a great handbag is to someone's day-to-day dressing: You can certainly function without them, but once you have them, you wonder how you lived without.

    --Patrice Cowan Bevans, pcbinteriors.com

10/15
Pretty Flowers

    I think flowers make a room feel more comfortable. I'm not talking about big fancy bouquets, but a single peony or rose in a teacup, or fresh herbs in a wine tumbler -- anything that adds fragrance.

    --Grant K. Gibson; grantkgibson.com

11/15
Better Bedding

    My husband and I spent a year in the south of France and one of our favorite pastimes was shopping at the fabulous flea markets. Over the year we purchased a really beautiful collection of hand-embroidered, vintage linen sheets. Slipping into those cool sheets, feeling wrapped up in a beautiful piece of history, is a lovely feeling at the end of the day.

    --Jessica Helgerson, jhinteriordesign.com

12/15
Treasured Accents

    Comfort is surrounding yourself with special things. I love to collect things in a room. This separates a merely decorated room from a fantastic one.

    --Annette Joseph, ajphotostylist.net

13/15
All the Right Pieces

    Billy Baldwin put it best: No room is comfortable until there are things to "sit upon, put upon, and gaze upon."

    --Elaine Griffin, elainegriffin.com

14/15
Back Support

    The one thing that makes me most physically comfortable is a back pillow. I use them anywhere I can get away with it. Clients don't realize how much they've been missing until they get a nice lumbar pillow and wonder how they ever got along without it!

    --Laura Hunt, laurahuntdesign.com

15/15
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