I know many of you may be feeling the effects of the dark and dreary winter, but there are many fantastic interior design concepts which bring the outdoors into your home, helping rid those winter blues and get you ready for Spring.
The innate biological connection we have with nature can have a positive impact on our well-being. I’ve read so many articles documenting how Biophilic design can reduce stress, improve cognitive function and creativity, as well as accelerate the rate at which we recover from illness.
Recognizing the impact our environment has on our mental state, many large corporations are integrating biophlila into the design and architecture of office buildings. With many office based workers now spending up to 90% of their time indoors, it’s vitally important to get the balance right.
Above image: Google Offices, Dublin
This week Jenne and I look at how you can bring a touch of the outdoors into your space; not only to create a harmonious and tranquil living area, but to also enhance your health and well-being.
Above image: Opus Urbus
It may sound like the obvious place to begin, but introducing plants, flowers and greenery into your living area is fundamental for neurological nourishment. I’d suggest choosing several small to medium size planters, placing them around the room so that greenery is always in eye line.
If you have tall ceilings, consider indoor hanging baskets or sky planters – these create quite a spectacle. In smaller spaces think about creating a funky terrarium. I’ve seen some wonderful homemade ones using kilner jars, old glass cafetieres, and even old light bulbs.
Above image: DIY light bulb terrarium
How can you take indoor planting to the next level? Artificial green wall panels are perfect for creating a striking visual. You can cover an entire wall or use the lightweight panels individually as wall art. Research has shown that even looking at pictures of nature scenes can elevate our spirits, so why not head out with your camera to your favorite park or green space. You can then display your prints around the house.
From the fabrics in your soft-furnishings to the color on your walls, take inspiration and use natural materials wherever possible, as Jenne comments: “The visual connection we have with nature is hugely important – it’s our blueprint and our inspiration here at Karndean Designflooring. It’s through meticulous attention to detail and careful selection of some of the most beautiful and inspiring natural timbers and stones that we develop our products. Take for example our Art Select Wood collection, which includes our most intricate designs and realistic embosses.”
Maximizing natural light is important. Firstly, make the most of the natural light that enters your home. Paint your walls white so light can reflect and bounce around your space easily, or think about changing your drapes for a lighter fabric. There are also many fantastic artificial lighting options that can recreate the benefits of natural light, perfect for smaller dwellings.
If you’re a city dweller or perhaps don’t have instant access to the outdoors, poor air quality could be impeding on your well-being. Consider a Himalayan salt crystal lamp. An inexpensive solution, these salt lamps are powerful, natural air purifiers. Eliminating allergens and pollutants, they’re also rather beautiful.
This interiors scheme is an empowering and enlightening concept, and certainly one you shouldn’t be weary of – go ahead and be a little daring.
Jenne’s top tip: I can think of so many occasions where people have mistaken our designflooring for the real counterparts, which to us, is the ultimate goal and why we put so much effort, time and resource into product development – with each plank and tile carefully designed for authenticity. As such, we understand how interiors designed with influence from nature can enhance the look of a room and consequently the way you feel. Our Michelangelo iconic range defines the coming of together of these two principles, particularly seen in Galician Quartz (pictured below).
Following our ethos – Inspired by Nature, Design for Living – all our product designs are developed to replicate the characteristics of wood and stone, but with improved durability and ease of maintenance.