Throws and blankets are lovely, but this time of year they can be a necessity, as well. In addition to sprucing up your home, making a tired sofa look new or adding a fresh pop of color, throws help keep you warm, especially when the mercury takes a tumble.

They come in a wide variety of materials, but one of the most popular right now is faux fur. It's elegant, luxurious and looks at home in the living room, den, even the bedroom.

Wool was and continues to be a popular choice in throws, especially in thicker weaves that maintain their shape, provide plenty of warmth and often add a contrasting texture.

Although not as warm as wool, cotton throws are a crowd-pleasing choice. Their quick cleanup makes them perfect for children's rooms.

You also could consider cashmere or mohair. Throws made of these materials tend to be more costly, but they wear well — and can be beautiful additions to your home.

Use without caution

Think of a throw as an accessory — like pillows, glassware, even art — that can enhance nearly any decor.

You can choose a throw that introduces a new color to a space, blends with existing colors or acts as an accent. For those looking to maintain a more neutral palette, taupe, black and charcoal gray are some great options. Prefer to incorporate color? Consider rich, warm colors into your space such as chocolate brown, deep orange, mustard yellow or a rich red.

The beauty of throws is that they can be can be used anywhere. Social areas, such as living rooms and family rooms, are typically great choices because these are areas where people typically relax or curl up by a fire or television.

But throws are also making their way into the bedroom, where they add a touch of style and can serve as additional bedding at night.

You might even want to add a throw in your home office, to give it a touch of comfort.

When it comes to throws, do what feels and looks best to you. At the foot of a bed, a folded rectangle can provide a clean, crisp look, while on sofas and across beds, throws simply tossed into place may work best. Another option may be to drape a throw over the back of a sofa or chair.

While there is no right or wrong way to display a throw, here are some suggestions.

Do: Experiment with different colors and textures.

Do: Consider your color choices and using a throw color that blends with your space, a throw that provides an accent, or one that offers contrast.

Don't: Use too many different materials in a single room, although you can use a different style of throw from room to room.

Don't: Skimp on size — throws are intended to be generous and cozy. Go big for your home.