At the end of 2019 we predicted interior choices centring on the flexible living spaces and built on the concepts of wellbeing, comfort and sustainability. At that time we had no idea how accurate that forecasting might actually be. In this blog we look at how the current pandemic may further develop these trends as we take the first tentative steps towards ‘getting back to normal’.
Optimise Your Living Space To The Max
Our homes are currently working very hard in terms of design and capacity. We’re demanding extra functionality for home working, makeshift classrooms and play areas. In the medium-term, we anticipate major home design transformations as families renovate their homes to maximise space such as lofts, spare rooms and other smaller nooks and crannies previously overlooked. Fitted furniture is the ideal solution for many of these space creating projects, seamlessly hugging the contours of your room and embracing architectural features, such beams and sloping ceilings, in its very design.
Master bedrooms are set to become even larger as the design focus makes a subtle shift towards a more functional and versatile living space. Bathroom en-suites have long been viewed as a must-have for the main bedroom, but now built-in desks for home-working and lounge areas for relaxing and passing the time, are predicted to become more popular. With facilities mirroring those of a studio apartment, either self-isolating or recovering from an illness in a multi-purpose bedroom would certainly seem a more practical solution, and an overall more pleasurable experience.
As we recover from the pandemic, will we be drawn towards smart solutions to keep our homes cleaner and safer? Certainly antimicrobial surfaces in bathrooms and kitchens could become a more routine choice. Touchless technology such as motion sensors on taps and voice control options for ovens, lights and televisions may become more common-place. Emerging technologies such as smart air, water and light tracking systems are all in development, designed to work in conjunction with a family’s natural rhythms.
A concept which first swept across Japan in the 1980s, forest bathing is surrounding yourself in nature to benefit from outdoor life. Just spending time in green spaces lowers pulse rates and cortisol levels, and in turn reduces stress responses and signs of depression. Simple images of lush greenery or green furnishings even have a positive effect on mental wellbeing, which is particularly significant given the current stay at home agenda.
In addition, creating your very own urban jungle couldn’t be simpler and you can apply the idea to any room in your home. Refresh your bedroom with peace lilies, aloe vera or jasmine, which will help you relax and recharge. Or add a tropical touch with your textiles, such as bedding and cushions.
For a contemporary look, create a plant shelfie for your kitchen or living room with varying shaped planters. Mix cacti and succulents for a characterful, quirky appeal – ideal for the non-green fingered amongst us! Bathrooms too are perfect for warmth-loving plants such as orchids and large leafed giants like yucca and palms.
Breathing Space Outdoors
For many of us, our gardens, whatever their size, have been a saving grace during the pandemic. Our own private outdoor area is a soothing, safe space to be, allowing us to relax and change the narrative for a few minutes. And whether that’s via gardening itself, or simply through enjoying the fresh air and scenery, the physical and mental health benefits of immersing yourself in your garden are ample.
Hence it will be no surprise to hear that outdoor living spaces are set to reign supreme. Trends could be reversed, especially in urban areas, reclaiming more space for gardens. From growing salad leaves and medicinal plants in window boxes, to jungle walls and a feature tree, there are some fascinating trends vying for your attention!
Planet friendly ideas such a hardscaping – crazy paving that allows rainwater to seep into the ground rather than run off into drains – will grow in popularity too, with sustainability issues at the forefront of landscaping design.
So with plenty of food for thought, one thing seems certain, and that is the current anecdotal evidence suggesting a surge in home improvement projects once the pandemic is over. And if yours includes the need for bespoke furniture, whether fitted or freestanding, we’d be delighted to help. See our Room Ideas and Request A Design Visit; we’ll be in touch just as soon as we can.