In one way or another, our homes are always a reflection of what we love. They are a vehicle for expression – whether modern and minimalist, or loaded with antique treasures with adventurous backstories! It is undeniable, however, that in light of recent global circumstances, the role of the home has been somewhat reframed. From those spending time secluded in pandemic-related lockdown, to those simply finding a fresh perspective on appreciation for personal space, it's not surprising that we are seeing our homes in a new light.
If slowing down under tough circumstances has taught us anything, it's that our homes are our sanctums, and hold the power to provide a sense of comfort. Surprisingly, trends emerging back in 2019 – long before Covid-19 was even on our radar – had already embraced the nurturing potential of interior design. Here, we will explore how natural materials, such as divine natural oak wood flooring, can contribute to enhancing our sense of well-being when at home. Are you ready to enhance the cocoon-like qualities of your interior?
Creating A Cocoon-like Embrace At Home
It's no secret that open floor plans and large-scale furniture curried favour within interior design circles for years. Of course, there will always be a place for such inclinations. However, in a trend that was taking well-timed stride last year, many people are looking for something a little more intimately scaled. Fundamentally, when it comes to residential interiors, a nesting instinct has taken hold! Alongside the urge to create softened spaces and corners in which to nestle, this has brought a shift in colour palette. Previously popular neutral and cool colours have slid aside to make way for warm neutrals, with infusions of pattern and richness.
An inviting interior with natural ash wood flooring, and sumptuous furnishings that ask to be engaged with, offers far more when it comes to our actual living experience than sleek sharp lines. In reality, comfort can be achieved in any number of different ways, but the way in which we interact with our spaces has never been so relevant. Alongside the right warming shades, we are seeing a change in shapes too, with rounded edges making a firm return. The warming, the tactile, the practical, and the pleasurable – these are the materials and objects that are finding their place as rulers of our interior landscapes.
Introducing A Well-being Element To Our Inner Sanctums
While exciting getaways to indulgent locations are conspicuously absent, our yearning for something soothing has never been stronger. Within the current crisis, we find ourselves grappling with entirely understandable feelings, such as anxiety, overwhelm, and even grief. While resisting the urge to lean into the luring arms of comfort baking or online shopping for too long, there is value in recognising the immense power that interior design can wield over our well-being. Not only that, but embracing these ideas can mean not only boosting the comfort of home under current circumstances, but offer the same rippling rewards when a more normal mode of life returns!
The idea that architectural design can be harmonious can be traced back to ancient Roman engineer Vitruvius. Today, thanks to the research of individuals such as architectural critic and historian Sarah Williams Goldhagen, we have built a mighty structure upon the foundations laid by historic thinkers like Vitruvius on the subject. As Goldhagen discusses in her book, Welcome to Your World: How the Built Environment Shapes Our Lives, studies of behaviour, science, and psychology, can tell us a lot about the inner workings of our aesthetic experience.
Goldhagen reveals that either an overly empty space, or an overly chaotic space can ramp up our stress levels. She recommends mimicking natures “organized complexity”, just as seen in natural fractal patters and proportions, for a tranquil middle ground. Beyond that, Goldhagen goes on to highlight the importance of sensory stimulation for emotional well-being. “We are imaginatively interacting with the environment at all times, and the richer those stimulations are, the better you’re going to feel.” As we sculpt our indoor environments, we can place emphasis on richness of texture, scent, sound, and visual interest, to enhance our home experience – and as a salve against anxiety.
The Nurturing Impact Of Natural Materials
Of course, another important aspect when it comes to being at ease within the home is bringing nature indoors with us. If you're new to the concept, our recent article on the subject awaits, with details of how biophilic design – the art of introducing natural elements – can benefit in us in a dazzling number of ways. They don't call it creature comforts for nothing! Introducing the organic, for example in beautiful eco friendly wood flooring, provides a powerful connection to nature. A myriad of studies tell us that this in turn promotes healing, offering therapeutic reward and a sense of safety.
Our homes grace us with a multitude of gifts – they serve as shelter, and provide financial security; they reflect who we are, and offer a place in which we can belong. Following recent events, they have become something far greater. Today, our homes may suddenly have taken on the role of being our offices, schools, and much more. With this in mind, choosing to transform them into spaces of greater comfort makes perfect sense. The warm and intricate texture of natural oak wood flooring, or perhaps the soothing presence of natural ash wood flooring, will provide a multi-box-ticking backdrop upon which to build an inner sanctum up to the task. Remember, the Unique Bespoke Wood team is always ready to chat, should you wish to explore your eco friendly wood flooring options!