The Natural Material Trend in 2019
Top Image Credit Habitat.
I recently wrote about Biophilic Design and the impact that this concept will continue to have on interiors and building design in 2019 here. The movement to improve our health and wellbeing in our home and buildings is no surprise given there is much research showing the benefits in such concepts on stress reduction, blood pressure levels and heart rates, increasing productivity, creativity and self-reported rates of well-being and cognitive function and engagement in the work place and home. Moreover, even small changes can start to have an impact.
There are many ways of engaging with nature directly in our homes, through utilising the benefits of plants, air circulation, heat, fire and light. Creating an outdoor living space or being closer to the outdoors, perhaps through patio doors that open directly to the garden, or simply placing furniture close to a window overlooking greenery, can have real health benefits.
But, really it is about more than just sticking a plant in your room, it is about creating spaces that make you feel good, happy and relaxed, something I have been writing about a lot in my posts recently. I call it decorating emotionally. What I mean by that is creating a home that works for you, but works for you not just in an aesthetically pleasing way, but which supports your emotional well being which directly supports you health.
Today, I am focusing on the way we can indirectly interact with nature, through the use of natural materials in our homes. This will also link into a post about sustainability and how we are also moving towards more conscious ways of decorating our homes and our buying habits.
Image Credits, Habitat.
The natural materials trend focuses on the use of tactile materials like rattan, bamboo, seagrass, cork, wood and earthy materials such as terrazzo, clay, handmade ceramics and stone. These materials all have an honest authenticity about them that we are naturally drawn to. Natural materials and textures help us to create a calming environment that helps to improve our well-being. Nature-inspired hues such as earthy browns, terracotta and deep greens help to bring a touch of the outdoors in, a key concept in Biophilic design. Not surprisingly, therefore, we are seeing an increase in the natural materials available on the high street this year.
Before you go off to buy everything new from a high street store, I suppose I should stop and reflect on the benefits of buying vintage in this context, especially when it comes to solid wood furniture, which typically has stood the test of time and where its age, the knocks and the scratches, the texture, can add an extra layer to your home. I write about how buying vintage has long since added something to my room schemes here. The happiness in finding something unique for you home, or a great up-cycling project, can also benefit you, since creativity is also known to have emotional benefits too. This is not just having a great natural item in your home, but something with the patina of age, a talking point, and in my case each vintage item brings back memories. Times when I stood up at auction and bid on an old and unloved item and restored the wood back to life.
There are so many ways in which you can incorporate natural materials in your home, you don’t need to incorporate everything, some touches here and there can be enough. Perhaps, a statement chair or bed, along with some plants and ceramics for you table. Perhaps, a natural lampshade of candle holders, a new natural rug. Think real wood and that includes furniture, chairs, flooring or perhaps think about adding wooden cladding to a wall. Natural carpets will add a cosy feel to any room and encourage relaxation.
When incorporating these natural elements into your home, think about the following which is related to the Biophilic concept.
Position furniture closer to windows and make the most of views out onto trees and greenery, this also helps get close to light. Let natural light flood in. Open you windows in summer to feel the air.
Create quiet places around the home or garden where you can relax. Surround yourself with nature. Think plants, but also do not forget a fire on a winter day.
Remember to make the space work for you, so you feel happy in your home.
If you want to shop natural materials for you home, I’ve created a moodboard below. Remember, even making a few small changes to your home can make all the difference, you do not have to create this entire look.
The Girl with The Green Sofa