It’s (finally) that time of year again, the nights are getting lighter, the days are getting longer, and the weather is getting warmer. Yes, that’s right, British summer time is officially here! If you love summer as much as we do, then we know you’re going to love our top tips on how to bring the outside in this summer, so you can really make the most of those good old summer nights. So, without further ado, let’s crack on with tip number one…
Get to grips with Biophilic design (don’t worry we’ll explain how)
Biophilic design is an idea that was born in the 1980s and has since been put into practice by the architecture industry but has also spilled over into interior design and other related fields as well. The idea behind biophilic design is all about doing things (through design) that increase the connection between the people living or working in an indoor space, with the natural world. This trend is becoming more and more popular too as some of us can spend as much as 90% of our lives indoors and there is increasing research that says embracing biophilic design can improve our physiological and psychological well-being.
So how do you do biophilic design in your home?
- Invest in house plants, this one’s fairly obvious so we’ll say no more here.
- Embrace patterns that are found in nature, a great example is patterns using the Fibonacci sequence, which is a pattern often found in nature, especially in leaf formations. The use of patterns found in nature in design is known as biomimicry.
- Maximise the natural light in your space. Natural light changes throughout the day and complements our circadian rhythm so it helps with waking and sleeping however, if you can’t get more natural light into your home, then investing in a smart lighting system that can mirror the changing light throughout the day is another great alternative. By the way, not only does maximising natural light help support our well-being, but it can also help reduce those energy bills too!
- Add the presence of water into your space. The presence of water has been empirically proven to increase feelings of tranquillity, so this is fantastic for your health and well-being.
- Appeal to all the senses in your space. Being able to see nature is one thing, but being able to feel it and smell it is also key to a holistic approach to biophilic design. Invest in natural materials such as rattan, willow, wood, cotton, linen, wool and so on to add natural textures into your space and consider scented candles that mimic natural smells or use real flowers to bring real fragrance into your home.
If you like the sound of biophilic design and you’d like to read more about this design concept, then there are some fantastic articles here
Mirror your materials inside and out
Another great, and relatively simple way to bring the outdoors in, is to mirror the materials you use inside your home, outside as well (or vice versa). A great way to do this is to continue flooring through from your indoor space to the outside. For example, if you have a wood floor in your living space, you could consider installing decking in the same wood or wood colour to extend this outdoors. Stone flooring can also transition well from indoors to outdoors too. Other ideas include using furniture choices such as wicker and rattan which can transition well across both environments and create a coherent space between inside and outside.
Choose an “earthy” colour scheme for your interior design
Just liking mirroring the materials you use inside and out, choosing an interior colour scheme that’s earthy and reflects nature is another great way to bring the outdoors in. Colours like brown, cream, stone, terracotta, and tones of green and blue are the perfect complement to the great outdoors. They also help create calm, cosy, and warm spaces that are perfect for snugs, living rooms and bedrooms, so they can work across a range of different rooms, to really maximise the connection between the inside and out.
Create a transitional space
Sometimes one of the most effective ways to connect the space between the inside of your home and the garden, is to create a transitional space. There are many examples of this from conservatories to orangeries to pagodas, pergolas and awnings, so even with a smaller budget, you can create a transitional space to suit you. These additions to your home have the added benefit of creating a new and usable space that’s often accessible and enjoyable all year round too. If you have children, these transitional spaces can make fantastic playrooms or if you prefer entertaining, then a sheltered outdoor dining space could be the right transitional space for you. Regardless of the type of space you choose, the point is that these kinds additions effectively bridge the gap between your inside and outside spaces.
Get planting – inside and out
Last but by no means least, embrace the power of planting to create a better connection between your home and your garden, this is particularly important if you’re living in a new build home
and you have that fabulous blank canvas of a garden to get started with. Adding plants to your garden take it from being a simple outside space, to an extension of your home and a real space for nature.
There are so many different things you can do with your garden to make it a valuable part of your home too and if you need inspiration for that, then you need to check out our latest garden tips and trends blog right here
. Don’t just keep the planting to the garden though! Bring the greenery indoors too. Not only will this help create a very literal connection with nature and the outdoors, it can also help improve your health and wellbeing as part of a biophilic design concept which we mentioned right at the beginning. Plants can add colour, scent and texture to any room and if you choose the right types, they can even have air purifying benefits
If those five easy tips to bring the outdoors in this summer haven’t got you excited to start redesigning and rethinking your space, then we don’t know what will!
Happy planting and happy summer.