How to Create the Home Ambiance You Want: Step by Step

September 07, 2021 5 min read

how to create home ambiance interior ambience

There are places and rooms where you just feel a nice mood the moment you step inside. Restaurants filled with class, spa rooms that instantly relax you, cabins that are Christmastime-cozy... They are prime examples of how ambience makes a space.

Interior ambience (or ambiance) is all about the 'feel' or character of your space. While many people associate ambience with an elegant, refined atmosphere, you can choose whatever tone you like for a room in your house. Maybe you want a "Sunday brunch" kind of kitchen, a vibrant bedroom for your teenager, or a sweet, sunny living room.

Whatever atmosphere you like, you can create it with simple decorating choices. Try this easy guide on setting the ambience for your home, using decor elements you can update today.


1. Decide on the lighting.

Lighting is perhaps the most influential factor in mood-setting. Notice, for example, the huge difference when a room is filled with natural light versus lit by moody lamps.

When deciding how to illuminate the room, consider three things:

  • Lighting color temperature -- "Warm" light tints are reds, oranges, and yellows, casting a soft glow fit for elegant or romantic rooms. "Cool" light colors are white, bluish-white, and midday sunlight. They're bright and clear, so they're perfect for busier rooms.
  • Amount of light -- How much illumination do you want and need for the space? You can regulate this in many ways: bulb types, lamp shades, window treatments, etc.
  • Location of light -- Where should you put your lighting fixtures? A central chandelier or pendant light is great for gathering spaces, like the living room or dining room. A single lamp is more appropriate for corners you want to highlight, such as a reading nook, a dresser, an art corner, etc. And of course, for practical reasons, many homeowners opt for multiple recessed lighting all over a room.


2. Fine-tune your color palette.

Now that you know the lighting you want for the room, you can adapt your color scheme to it.

Color shades have different characters. For example, a darker blue like navy has a solid, sophisticated feel to it (see above); a bright blue like turquoise emits energy and liveliness; and a soft, light shade like powder blue is incredibly calming. Compare various shades to find the best ones for your walls, furnishings, and decor.

To add to that, color hues change with the light, so you'll want to consider how your lighting will affect your colors. For example, a white wall will be stark and bright in daylight, but can be softly tinged yellow when lit with lamps.

One more thing: Play around with color combos. You can fill your palette with shades of the same color for a safe, easy look, or you can use nicely contrasting colors for impact.

Want a new interior colors but can't repaint? You may find some helpful tips here.

Wall art pictured above: "Enjoy Today" Premium Canvas


3. Choose your materials and textures.

Consider the textiles and furniture materials you put into the room. It's not just their color that changes the ambiance, it's their texture, too. Some examples of how textures set the mood:

  • Luxurious -- Velvet fabrics, heavy drapery, plush sofas and carpets, metallic accents, premium hardwood
  • Relaxing zen -- Minimal and clean lines, stone and ceramic materials, graceful plants, undecorated wood furniture
  • Tropical-breezy -- Sheer fabrics, woven rattan or wicker, leafy plants or fronds, light wood furniture (especially driftwood)
  • Modern and crisp -- Light and smooth furniture, man-made materials (acrylic, laminates, molded wood, etc.), metal hardware, distinct geometric shapes.


4. Organize and arrange.

Another factor that affects ambiance is how much stuff is in the room.

If you want a relaxing atmosphere -- perhaps for your bedroom or bathroom -- you'll lean towards minimal decor in order to leave lots of 'breathing space' for the eyes. Avoid crowding it with furniture, and see if you can keep various objects stowed away in closed storage.

On the other hand, if you want a vibrant, dynamic space for creativity and play, decorate it with items that stimulate the mind. We love motivational art prints for this purpose. This energizing atmosphere is great for a child's playroom, a creative workstation, or an entertainment den.

And if you would like the room to feel like a comfy social space for when friends and family visit, put emphasis on seating arrangements. Pull your couches and chairs close together, congregating around a table fit for refreshments, and make it extra-cozy with fab throw pillows and blankets.

Wall art pictured above: Personalized "Home Is Where Love Resides" Premium Canvas


5. Pick evocative accents.

Some objects just evoke a certain mood, like how candles instantly spell relaxation or how fairy lights are all about whimsy and innocence. When picking out decor and ornaments for your room, choose only those that contribute to the ambiance you want to create. Avoid extraneous items, colors, and patterns that clash with the mood of the space.

Examples of how accents can build on the ambiance:

  • Plaid throw blankets and old book stacks for a cozy cabin feel
  • Woven sisal and seashell ornaments for a beach vibe
  • Dainty florals and pastel-colored furniture for country cottage charm
  • Crystal chandeliers and filigree portraits for old-world luxury.

Pillow pictured above: Personalized Name Pillow With Floral Print


6. Inject your personality.

As you're redecorating your own home, chances are that something about you will perfectly match each room of the house. Don't be afraid to showcase your interests and memories that suit the space. Your Valentine keepsakes would display so well in a romantic bedroom. Your travel photographs can provide fantastic inspiration in your home office. And that lovely embroidery art you made can grace your farmhouse-themed living room or dining room.

Not only will these personal additions make the room more "you," they can also make a unique impression on guests (versus an impersonal, generic room).

Wall art pictured above: Personalized "Where It All Began" Couple's Premium Canvas


7. Fill it with fragrance.

Interior decorators will tell you that scent is actually one of the biggest things that contribute to ambiance. Just think about how certain smells take you back to certain places: cinnamon and peppermint at Christmas, the smell of newly cut grass at school, or that freshly brewed aroma in coffee shops.

There are various ways to fill a room with fragrance, such as through aromatherapy oils, scented candles, fresh flowers, or even your cooking! The important thing is to match the 'personality' of the scent with the ambiance you want. Yes, they have different personalities -- warm, fruity, floral, musky, citrusy, and more.

When choosing the scent for your home, some reading and perfume-testing will be helpful. We found a nice guide on home fragrances here.


We hope these tips on creating a home ambiance helped you. It sure inspired us to refresh our own homes!

If you liked this blog post, you'll want to check out our other posts on home atmosphere:

And of course, when it's time to shop decor, browse at!

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