By David Charles
Who doesn't relish a little calm in their lives?
Modern lifestyles whizz by at breakneck speeds so it's a good idea to have a place to go where the atmosphere is serene and the mood is relaxed. Whether it's at home or the office, the spaces we inhabit influence the way we feel, even if we don't consciously acknowledge it. Interiors splashed with hot shades such as scarlet and citrus yellow have an energizing effect on mood, but they wouldn't make the best choice for a chill out room or a kicked-back corner. To create an interior with an atmosphere that inspires calm rather than agitation, here are a few hard and fast rules to get started with...
A room crammed with large pieces of furniture, low light levels and lots of clutter will not feel calm. Choose furniture that fits the scale of the room so that it does not feel claustrophobic. Make a feature of large windows as long views and a connection to the outside world engender feelings of inner peace – especially if there is some greenery beyond. Keep window treatments streamlined and control light levels with vinyl blinds or interior shutters in super sleek finishes.
Minimize clutter by organizing effective storage solutions, at home these can take the form of footstools, shelving walls and baskets or attractive containers that harmonize and coordinate with each other.
Calm office spaces never have cables poking out all over the place, they are wireless models of streamlined efficiency, helping to keep the workforce both relaxed and productive. Ergonomically designed office furniture such as chairs and desks provide optimum comfort and promote feelings of well-being in staff.
Set people at ease by appealing to their sensual natures. Don't overload a room with hard surfaces that bounce sound off the walls. Deaden acoustics with rugs and textured cushions and wall hangings to create a softer and more welcoming space. The sound of waves breaking or birdsong can de-stress the most highly-strung individuals – play such relaxation CDs at a low level and watch the tension fall away. Other elements such as indoor palms, vases of flowers or elegant single orchids introduce a natural dimension that calms and tames a room.
The less is more philosophy couldn't be more relevant in the context of creating a calm interior atmosphere at work or at home.
By working on reducing the amount of stuff in rooms, focusing on minimalist styling, building up natural light levels and putting together a color palette that's both restful and elegant - calm and serene interior design schemes are simplicity itself.