Our motivation to redesign and improve our home largely comes from a few fairly basic human needs. Firstly our primal need for security; to feel safe in our homes, protected from the elements outside, warm and safe from danger. Then there is a need for practicality; the design of our homes must help rather than hinder us in our everyday activities – whether work or leisure. And then there is our need for comfort; a need for a place where we can unwind, relax, and “feel at home”.
As intelligent beings however, we also want our homes to inspire us; to be a place that gives us energy, generates enthusiasm and a positive outlook. Yet so often, for some reason, our homes fail us here. Our homes may be warm, secure and stuffed to the rafters with modern gadgets, stylish furniture and other possessions, but is your home inspiring you? Giving you energy?
This article looks at a few solutions, how you can re-energise your home.
Increase natural light
Like most organisms, plant or animal, humans have an innate response to daylight as a source of energy and growth. Research consistently shows how increased exposure to natural light dramatically improves our health, sense of wellbeing and energy levels – so aim to get as much as possible flowing into your home.
Rather than heavy dark-coloured curtains which block natural light coming in, try dressing your windows with simple, unfussy flowing curtains or voiles made from light-coloured or sheer materials. A few stylish mirrors adorning your walls not only helps reflect natural light around the home but will magically make your rooms feel so much larger.
In a room with a flat roof, give some serious thought to installing a stylish roof lantern. The aluminium Atlas Flat Rooflight in particular features slim sightlines designed to allow the maximum amount of natural light flooding directly in to the centre of the room and gives the illusion of open roof space. They are also available in a huge range of colour finishes and provide excellent insulation. A roof lantern can make a room feel so much more spacious and airy too.
Declutter and clean
It’s an inconvenient truth, but a major cause of our homes lacking that “va va voom” is that they could probably do with a good spring clean and some serious de-cluttering. The idea of cleaning and “having a good sort out” is one most of us approach with trepidation. But you will never fail to be surprised how satisfied and happier you feel, and how your rooms feel bigger, brighter and fresher, once you’ve disposed of all that “stuff” and your surfaces are all shiny and clean.
Get back to nature
We may live in an increasingly sanitised and hyper-technological world, but deep down we are still cavemen with an innate desire to be close to nature. Houseplants and freshly-cut flowers arranged in an attractive planter or vase, are not only nice to look at, but as living organisms, are a source of life and energy themselves, which will permeate into any room.
Be bold, be dramatic
To help maintain a sleek uncluttered appearance in your rooms, you will want most of your décor to be tasteful, simple and unfussy. But you can then give your room a real shot of energy by introducing a single source of dramatic contrast to the simplicity of the rest of the room. As with so many things, the trick is doing more with less – a striking piece of wall art on an otherwise plain wall, a bold coloured rug contrasted against a plain pale-coloured floor, or a stunning coffee table as a centrepiece in a relatively sparsely-fitted living room.
Get a fresh perspective
Without wanting to get into the realms of the ancient art of Feng Shui, you may well find that all your room needs is a subtle re-arrangement of furniture and décor. Rearranging sofas, bookcases, standing lamps, wall hangings in relation to each other and windows / doors can have a dramatic effect on how a home feels and the way you live and behave in it.