Winter is here, and unlike previous years, our homes won’t be filled to the brim. While this forced solitude is not the most festive, let’s take this time to make our homes more warm and comforting than ever, as we wait for company, which will inevitably come back to us in just a few months.
1. HEAT UP THAT FIREPLACE!
Our log homes are synonymous with natural warmth, with beauty, but there’s nothing more enchanting than heating them with a wood burning fire to add ambiance and comfort… A fire, be it big or small, brings this touch of magic that envelops us on cold winter nights, or stormy afternoons.
If you’re planning to buy or build a log home, consider the type of fireplace you’ll want and where you’ll put it from the very first steps in your architecture plans. You won’t regret it.
Is heating with wood new to you? Here are a few tips to guide you:
- Opt for hard woods (beech, oak, ash, elm, hornbeam) for an optimal result.
- Know that it is highly recommended that you use dry wood, ready for use (cut at least one year before so that it contains less than 20% humidity), rather than fresh cut wood (45% humidity). Dry, clean wood will provide better results (twice as much heat) and emit less pollution.
- Avoid burning soiled wood (old furniture or construction debris) indoors. These materials can emit toxic pollutants that could be harmful to your health and the longevity of your fireplace. Évitez de brûler du bois souillé (vieux meubles ou débris de construction) à l’intérieur.
2. HUMIDIFY THE AIR FOR ADDED COMFORT
Heating with wood can be wonderful, but it can also lower the ambient humidity, causing dry skin, dry noses, and requiring more heat for a feeling of comfort. Consider when planning your home, installing a system that will allow you to humidify the air in cold and dry weather. If this isn’t possible, you can purchase humidifiers for each room, or mainly for the bedrooms. When well controlled, the ideal humidity level can help reduce the lifespan of viruses, minimize allergies and contribute to your overall wellness.
Therefore, you should avoid letting the humidity level drop below 30%. Your wood home will thank you too, for this extra bit of comfort!
3. LIGHT UP YOUR LOG HOME!
Whether it be with party lights outdoors, illuminated stars hung in front of the windows, candles in the window, on the mantle and on the tables, or even footed lamps, adding additional light sources during the winter is a simple and efficient way to liven up a space. Round wood is a warm material that shines even more when lit by warm light. Take advantage of the change in season to invest in LED lights, to save on energy, which might allow you to add extra lighting on the outside of your home, in the windowsills, under the awnings and even in your trees.
If you’re planning to build a home, don’t underestimate the wow factor that well planned lighting can add. Illuminating the facade of your log cabin from its conception is simple, and more economical than adding it after the fact. Also, talk to your contractor about adding outlets near your windows (to make adding lighting near the windows during the holidays even easier), and integrating mural light fixtures in certain strategic locations, like the fireplace, in the stairs, in the hallways and above your nightstands!
4. FILL YOUR HEARTS WITH GRATITUDE
It might be cliche, but filling our hearts with gratitude and intentional recognition, fills our home with warmth. We’re in a dark, sad period. We will never forget 2020 and its challenges, the social distancing, the solitude and the courage it took for us to go on. The team at Harkins wants to express their deepest gratitude to you for your interest, your love of round wood, your messages and your confidence. Our hearts are full of gratitude for the last 20 years we’ve spent building your homes with our own two hands. We hope that if you have chosen a Harkins round wood home, you feel the love that we have for our work and for our clients. May your hearts be filled with warmth and with peace, as we wait to welcome you back to our worksites and our offices once again.