Welcome The other morning as I left the house I felt that telltale chill in the air that told me autumn is on the way. It hardly seems possible that after the glorious long days of summer we will soon be winding back the clocks for winter (for the record they go back on 25 October, so make a note on your calendar) – our pick of the best wall clocks (p11) will ensure you’re ready to turn back time. Our homes become our sanctuary as we start to spend more time indoors. To prepare for winter in my home I bring out extra cushions to make my sofa feel more inviting, and throw down rugs on the fl oor that had been packed away for summer in favour of bare fl oorboards – it instantly changes the ambience in my living room to make it feel cosier. For more inspiration, turn to page 79, where our interiors expert has brought together a selection of sumptuous soft furnishings to make your living room a comfortable and welcoming place. While we’re on the subject, our four real homes are all country cottages that, to me, epitomise the word cosy, from the gorgeous thatched cottage that features on our cover to an old stable that has been lovingly converted by the owners. And don’t miss our competition on page 99 to win a gourmet overnight stay at a fi ve-star country house hotel in Sussex – it’s free and easy to enter online. Good luck!