We’re back to share some design thoughts and ideas after a very busy time in the studio. The lead-up to Christmas is fast-paced where everyone want their homes to look just right for friends and family over the holidays.
So in the early months of the year we look towards a calmer way of thinking and focus on how interiors feel rather than how they look. It’s something that our clients rarely think about and it’s always up there on our list of must-haves when designing a home.
We live in a highly visual age faced with a million images in our day-to-day journey so it’s easy to focus on how things look rather than how they feel. I’ve worked on shoots and seen lots of designed houses in real life and then featured in magazines to know what looks amazing on the page doesn’t always feel nice in real life.
Our homes are our safe escape place after a long day. The Danes have a saying called ‘hygge’ which roughly translates as getting a big warm hug from your interior. So at the outset of a project when working with our client on the brief, we encourage them to think about how they want the space to feel.
Here are a few of things we consider when designing a home that feels great when you open the door, and a place you will never want to leave.
Whether it’s the feel of marble on a bathroom vanity cabinet or the cossetting feeling of a Scandinavean wool felt curtain, texture gives you a visual and sensual hug. Whether it’s through fabric, tiles or the shape of a handle, bring texture into your home.
A perfectly scented home
Scent can evoke memories and past experiences so it’s a very powerful thing. It’s also a very personal thing. We love woody, aromatic smells like Diptheque Feu du Bois, but it’s important to work out your favorite scent. Fresh and citrus. Sweet and floral. Musky and masculine. Choose your favorite then find products to bring scent into your space – Diptheque, Molton Brown, Aesop and Santa Maria are some of our favorites. Use candles in bathrooms, flowers in the kitchen (where you want softer scents that don’t compete with food), and essential oils. We burn Aesop essential oils all day in the studio, they are the best http://www.aesop.com/uk/packs-and-gifts/home.html
Colour, it sets the mood, the tone, the feeling in a space. It amazes me how afraid of colour some of our clients are. So we put together concept boards and paint out large panels on site, and then our clients ‘get it’. Look to the colours in your wardrobe to get an idea of the colours you love. We have an innate response to colour. When you want to feel warm choose colours with red tones (whites, greys and creams can have warm red tones to them). Look to colours from nature.
At our modern pace of life, bathrooms are more about achieving inner serenity rather than just hygiene, to connecting mind with body. Natural materials such as marble, stone and wood in the bathroom as well as well proportioned walk in showers and freestanding baths will give you chance to gather your senses.
A good nights sleep
We spend a third of our lives in bed. Make your bedroom a quiet space. Use large rugs on the floor to quieten hard surfaces and also for emotional warmth. Bed sheets are a daily delight. Choose the best linen bedsheets – as a natural fabric they absorb moisture and last forever.
Get the lighting right at home and you’ll never want to leave. Layer light and use floor lamps, table lamps, candles and hidden cabinet lights to create a feeling of ‘hygge’. You’ll need at least 9 lights in a medium living space to create the right mood. And the number one thing we think about when designing lighting schemes for our clients is natural light. Light is the single most important area to address when it comes to making a home feel right. With permissions, the more window area you have the better.
So there you have it some tips on how to experience your interior, all too often we think about the visual, but feeling good in your space is just the best. ‘Hygge’ is more about how things feel than how they look.