Introducing Awestruck Biophilic Design - bringing the outdoors indoors through the exploration of wellbeing

Biophilic Lockdown

 

GREEN AND YELLOW LIVING ROOM | VOGUE AUS | Kitty & B

Using nature to create the perfect lockdown environment is more important than ever before. Especially, since the world pandemic doesn’t show any signs of slowing down anytime soon, with a potential second lockdown lurking around the corner. We need nature now more than ever before. As we are continuing to follow the governments advice and new rules being put in place. We are learning to adapt to what is now becoming the new normal and a new life of staying at home. Although being at home may be a comfort for some, not so much for others. As lockdown has led to people becoming stressed and feeling anxious and there has been a significant rise in people’s mental health. Looking at government research, it has shown that nearly half of all adults in the UK have suffered from anxiety problems due to this world pandemic.

Image Credit - Leanne Ford, Domino
Image Credit - Leanne Ford, Domino 

As we are spending more time indoors with the continuing lockdown, it is important to try and create an environment that makes you feel relaxed, calm and at peace. Plants are a great solution for this, as they not only brighten up your home, but they also add the essential need to connect with nature and living organisms, which is based around the theory of ‘Biophilia’. Furthermore, plants are important for our wellbeing and have been shown to increase the productivity, purify the air and help reduce stress and anxiety through its restorative properties.

Dulux 2021 Colours, Seasons in Colour Image Credit - Jenny Kakoudakis
Dulux 2021 Colours, Seasons in Colour Image Credit - Jenny Kakoudakis
Sea of Trees Forest Wallpaper Mural Image Credit - © Murals Wallpaper
Sea of Trees Forest Wallpaper Mural Image Credit - © Murals Wallpaper 

Although you need to keep in mind that creating a Biophilic environment isn’t just about installing plants. Our desire to connect with nature can also be fulfilled through our senses. For example, this could be done through natural light, smelling ambient senses like lavender, seeing plants and even touching natural textures such as linen or wood. Bearing this in mind, here are some of our best tips of ways you can turn your home in to a calm sanctuary through Biophilic features:

Summit House Co-Working Space In London By Note Design Studio. Photography by Michael Sinclair & Andrew Meredith
Summit House Co-Working Space In London By Note Design Studio. Photography by Michael Sinclair & Andrew Meredith  

Provide a view

In your home think about ways you can maximize the natural light, this may be through a window where you get a lovely view of the outdoors. You may consider arranging your furniture to centre around one particular window or doorway in your home. This could become the perfect reading corner, working from a home spot or even the spot you just go to relax and switch off from the outside world.

Line Borella home in Copenhagen, Image Credit © Our Food Stories
Line Borella home in Copenhagen, Image Credit © Our Food Stories
A light filled house extension | by SHnordic
A light filled house extension | by SHnordic

Invent a View

Don’t worry if you lack an outdoor view, a connection with nature can also be created by artwork, this may be in the form of landscape photography or paintings. On the other hand, you could use wallpaper to create an even more visual impact through a feature wall or room.

Fast Flowing Fall River in Forest' Landscape Photography Wall Art by DESIGN ART
Tylöskog Green Watercolour Forest Tree Silhouette Wallpaper Mural
Fast Flowing Fall River in Forest' Landscape Photography Wall Art by DESIGN ART
Fast Flowing Fall River in Forest' Landscape Photography Wall Art by DESIGN ART

Sensorial connection

Did you know that scents can play a huge part in boosting our mood within the home? Studies have shown that 75% of our emotions are generated by smell. Although we might not necessarily be able to tell what the smell could be, we do have the ability to differentiate between smells. This shows that as human we can easily adapt to recognising smells in association to fond memories and emotions from our past. This maybe from an amazing holiday you had or even a childhood memory.

Refined Mid-Century Living Room, Image Credit - Spruce Up
Refined Mid-Century Living Room, Image Credit - Spruce Up 

One of the easiest ways we would recommend improving the smell around your home is through air purifiers, which are really easy to get hold of and can even be used as a beautiful feature within the home. Here are our favourite scents that we would recommend to positively improve your wellbeing:

  • Lavender – can help reduce stress and improve anxiety
  • Rosemary – helps improve your memory and even energizes the mind, which is great after a long day at home!
  • Cinnamon – enhances your concentration and helps to improve mental fatigue
  • Citrus – Lemon is uplifting which is something we could all do with right now. Also bergamot oil can help treat depression, whilst grapefruit can improve mental exhaustion and orange can help with easing stress.
  • Peppermint- enhances the stimulation of the mind, leaves you feeling fresh and energised and even helps to improve concentration.
Lavender HelloGlow,  Image Credit - HELLO NATURAL
Lavender HelloGlow,  Image Credit - HELLO NATURAL
Rosemary, Image Credit - Foodstoragemoms
Rosemary, Image Credit - Foodstoragemoms
Cinnamon Sticks Image Credit - Pintrest
Cinnamon Sticks Image Credit - Pinterest 
Citrus Sense, Image Credit - Vegetarian Ventures
Citrus Sense, Image Credit - Vegetarian Ventures 

 

Peppermint - Image Credit, Traditional Medicinals®

 

Peppermint - Image Credit, Traditional Medicinals®

Plants

We would always recommend you should start incorporating more plants into your home as it is the best way to begin when it comes to creating a Biophilic home/environment. There are some great plant suppliers online where you can get them delivered straight to your front door and even garden centres are starting to offer these services.

Hanging Plant Shelves by Kari - Image Credit, The Artful Roost
Hanging Plant Shelves by Kari - Image Credit, The Artful Roost 

When you come to choosing which plants would be best for your home? We would recommend you start by choosing plants that offer air purifying factors such as;

English Ivy image credit - Good House Keeping
English Ivy image credit - Good House Keeping 
Snake Plant -  Image Credit, ZDESIGN AT HOME
Snake Plant -  Image Credit, ZDESIGN AT HOME
Weeping Fig - Image Credit , Ourhouseplants
Weeping Fig - Image Credit , Ourhouseplants
Peace lily , Image Credit - Epic Gardening
Peace lily , Image Credit - Epic Gardening 

All of these plants have been proven to remove the toxins from your indoor space and increase your levels of oxygen. As the more oxygen we receive the more our blood flow increases to the heart and the rest of our body. It will help make sure that you become well rested and more focused on the daily task you have each day to complete.

The Rhapis Palm, Algerian Ivy and Pothos all have mood boosting attributes as well due to their evergreen leaves. These are the perfect small plants that you could add to your new home office/desk or even just in rooms around the house. Although, if you lack natural light in your home then don’t worry, we would suggest getting the Alagonema, Dracaenas and Sansevierias which all keep their beautiful gold yellow colour all year round and even flourish in rooms that lack natural light.

Biophilia | The Story of an Accidental Biophiliac, Image Credit - thewoodenhillblog
Biophilia | The Story of an Accidental Biophiliac, Image Credit - thewoodenhillblog

In summary, you can see that Biophilic design has a lot to offer our homes in the current situation, from improving our wellbeing to reducing our stress levels and even our productivity. Which is great, since a lot of us are going to be working from home a lot more. It is important to remember that the home we chose to live in should make us feel calm and relaxed, and this can all be achieved through adding a few plants in to your home, incorporating new scents into your home and even creating natural views for us to look at. Maybe Biophilic design can be the solution to the lockdown blues?

Clive and Jeanne’s House by JOMA Architecture Image Credit- Home Adore
Clive and Jeanne’s House by JOMA Architecture,  Image Credit- Home Adore