new year, new resolutions

Woman having tea while sitting on a pouf

Every year we say we’re not going to make New Year’s resolutions and then we go and do it anyway. This year, as you’ve probably guessed, is no exception and the top spots on our list are all about finding our happy places at home—spots where we can relax, take a break from the world, and manifest a better year ahead.

Resolution: Be More Zen
After the year that we just had, we are going to bet that “be more zen” is on a lot of resolution lists for 2021. And, for a lot of us, that means carving out some peaceful, comfortable places in our homes to encourage those moments of calm enlightenment. Or, if we’re being honest, to escape from the world for a bit.

Your zen space can be anything you want it to be but, whether it’s a full room or just a corner, there are a few elements that can help set the tone for finding inner peace. Start with a soft neutral palette—whites, creams, beiges, taupes, and even soft shades of sage or grey—to calm the eye and the mind. Use textures and subtle tone-on-tone patterns to create interest, rather than pops of colour, and choose natural materials as much as possible.

What you put in your zen space depends on how you use it, but keep in mind that the idea is to use as few pieces as you can get away with. Generally speaking, furniture for your zen space should be uncomplicated, with simple shapes and clean lines to accentuate wood patterns and textured fabrics. If your space also includes storage for other activities, like crafts or home office, storage pieces with doors will keep the visual clutter to a minimum.

Yoga requires very little furniture—just a place to spread out your yoga mat and perhaps a large floor mirror for checking alignment during standing poses. For rooms with hard-surface floors, a soft area rug can be used to provide extra cushioning and warmth under your mat, as well. The Safi Area Rug in off-white features a geometric mandala pattern in grey to add a little pattern as well as warmth to your space.

If you are tuning in for virtual yoga classes, a small cabinet or console table can be used to hold your laptop or TV. Or consider casting your classes to a Samsung the Frame TV mounted to the wall—when it’s off, it displays your choice of inspired artworks from the online gallery store.

If you like to meditate, or it’s on your list of things to do in 2021, a low, armless piece of furniture like the modular Cozi chair allows you sit in almost any position, or you can attach a second Cozi to create a comfortable chaise. We love its textured, neutral fabric and moveable bolster, which can be placed wherever you need support or used on the floor during yoga or stretching sessions. It’s the perfect complement to your om office. (See what we did there?)

Many meditation rooms usually also include a small table or cabinet, on its own or topped with a tray, to hold treasured objects, candles, incense, and mala beads. We think the Premridge cabinet, with its meditative diamond inlay pattern and wooden pulls, is the perfect combination of zen and function. (And, if you’re looking for a different kind of zen, it also holds 16 bottles of wine.)

Woman Reading a Book

Resolution: Read More
Whether you want to finally tackle that list of books you’ve been meaning to read, or just get away from your electronic devices, resolving to read more is something that is both achievable and good for you! In addition to providing an escape and making you more empathetic, reading is a great way to keep your brain sharp and can help with stress relief and depression.

To encourage yourself to read more, you’ll want to set up a comfortable place where you can dive right in without distractions. The good news is, it doesn’t take much to set up a spot that’s conducive to reading—at minimum you need a place to sit and some good lighting. After that, you can add all the creature comforts, like a toss pillow, a cozy throw, and a side table to hold drinks and snacks.

The most obvious place to start is with a good reading chair. While choosing a reading chair is often more of an emotional decision than strictly a practical one, there are some key things to look for. The first thing, above everything else is comfort—your reading chair should be one of the most comfortable spots in the house. That’s what will keep you going back day after day to devour chapter after chapter.

Everyone has their own idea of what makes the perfect reading chair, but we think it should have a high back to support the spine and shoulders, a deep, wide seat, and arms that hold your arms in a natural position when you place them on top. The Vernon chair is a great example of a chair that ticks all the boxes and has customizable options so you can make it truly your own.

If you like to put your feet up when you read, consider a recliner or chaise chair, or add a matching ottoman to your armchair. If you are a feet-tucker-upper, a chair-and-a-half, like the Kananwood, will give you the extra room you need to curl up and get comfortable. A chair-and-a-half is also a great option if you will be using your reading chair to share a book with your littles, or like to cuddle with a pet while you read.

Once you have your chair in place, good task lighting is key to preventing eye strain and making reading more enjoyable. Rather than lighting up the entire room, you want your reading lamp to cast a pool of light onto your book, like the Marinel that can be placed beside or slightly behind your chair and adjusted to just the right angle.

Resolution: Eat Healthier
Can we consider chicken wings and French fries healthy? Probably not, but we can make them a little healthier and help you break up with your fast-food delivery driver. Or, at least, see less of each other.

With its built-in air fryer, this LG Wifi connected range lets you make all your fast-food and pub favourites right in your own kitchen, but because you are cooking in hot air and not hot fat, your fried foods will be less oily and every bit as crisp.

There’s almost no limit to what you can make in the 6.3 cubic foot oven—from apple fritters to onion rings to zucchini sticks—and it all comes out perfectly browned and guilt-free. When you’re not frying, the ProBake Convection ensures perfect pizzas, baked goods and roasts every time, and you can check on the progress of your food without letting the heat out—simply knock twice on the InstaView window to illuminate the interior of the oven.

And, before you ask, clean-up is a snap thanks to LG’s EasyClean® oven-cleaning feature, which gets the oven walls clean in just 10 minutes, using only water. (This is probably our second favourite feature of this range, because who ever made the resolution to spend more time cleaning their oven?)

Do you share any of our New Year’s Resolutions? Follow @DufresneStyle on Instagram and see what else we have in common!