5 interior design ideas to help you feel calm at home

Mental health isn’t just about what is going on in our heads. Our physical environment has a significant impact on our mood – all it takes is an untidy bedroom or a disorderly office for our stress levels to rise. Although lockdown has lifted for many of us and we are (slowly) getting back to our usual routines, lots of us are still spending most of our time at home. So it’s never been more important to feel calm and relaxed in our living environment. Want to create an oasis of tranquillity in your home but don’t know where to begin? Read our top interior design tips for how to achieve a stress-free living space.

Keep it clean 

Having a clean and tidy home is one of the first steps to achieving your inner zen. Believe it or not, there’s a close link between clutter and stress. We might not realise it, but when we are surrounded by mess, we instantly feel more irritable and on edge. Keeping a tidy home really does help to have a tidy mind. Did you know that cleaning itself can actually alleviate stress? So if you’re feeling on edge, why not pick up a rag and get to work? If you don’t have time to clean your home yourself, why not hire a cleaner to give you a helping hand? 

Say hello to house plants 

Plants have endless benefits. They can increase our mood, reduce our anxiety levels, and even help us to sleep. What’s more, their visual appeal makes them a great addition to any home. Popping a plant in your house will create an instant sense of calm. If you’re worried about keeping your plant alive, aloe vera is a great option as it is calming and requires very little upkeep. 


Pick peaceful colours

Different colours evoke different moods. If you’ve ever entered a room with soft, neutral shades and instantly felt serene, that’s because lighter, pastel hues such as ivory and grey are proven to help lower blood pressure. If you want to give your room a fresh and bright feel, soft, pastel tones of yellow, green, and blue can add a touch of vibrancy. Did you know that some colours bring out different moods? Looking for a room that exudes positive energy? Go for yellow! Want to feel connected to nature? Green is the way forward.

Zone your space 

Covid-19 has caused lots of offices to close for the foreseeable future, leaving many of us to get creative with our own DIY home office attempts. If you are working from home, make sure that you separate your workspace and living space. Mixing the two can confuse our brains, making it hard for us to unwind after a day of work. Try and add a couple of physical markers to help separate your space. Simple things like putting up a notice board, table, and chair in your workspace will help you to feel like you’re in an office. Likewise, make sure there’s a designated space to unwind and relax – keep it cosy with cushions and rugs. 

Keep it flexible with moveable furniture 

Having a healthy mind isn’t just down to the space you inhabit, it’s about what you do to keep yourself busy. A serene living space is perfectly complemented with relaxing exercises like Pilates, Yoga, or Meditation. Flexible furniture means you can easily create space to practice these exercises at home. With online exercise classes on the rise, you should have no problem finding one suited to your fitness levels and interests. 

You won’t know which interior design style works for your home and personality until you give it a go. But a few touches here and there can help you create a home that will alleviate stress and bring calm. That’s worth its weight in gold.

From aromatherapy to alternative healing, click here to connect with a Health and Wellness expert on Bark. If you fancy giving your home a face lift too, click here to be put in touch with a House and Home Professional. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered – let us do the leg work.


Elite Pro Interview: How to hire a great interior designer for your home

Hiring an interior designer is a smart move if you want your home to look its best. Even if you have a natural flare for decorating, drafting in a professional can be an easy way to save time and money.

Whether you already have an idea of what you want, or are starting the project from scratch, a skilled interior designer will work with you to create the home of your dreams.

Here’s what three of our Elite Pros have to say about the best way to hire an interior designer for your next home makeover project.

What services can an interior designer provide?

You can hire an interior designer for projects of all shapes and sizes, from renovating a single room to an ongoing relationship to help you reimagine your living space many times over the years.

But whatever the scope of your home improvement project, the role your interior designer will play can be broken down into three phases: 1) concept design, 2) detailed specifications and 3) implementation.

“Implementation sources and delivers all goods and provides input to the build process on site if required,” explains Decodence’s Elina Helenius. “The concept provides an idea of the desired end state – finishes, materials and layout. The detailed design provides drawings for layout changes.”

Decodence cultivated an air of class for this boutique winery

What should you ask before hiring someone as your interior designer?

Before you begin contacting interior designers, you should have a rough idea of what your home improvement project will involve. Take a look at the space and think about which features you’re ready to change, as well as what impact your lifestyle will have on the finished space.

“Give the designer as much information as you can – including budget, styles, colours, any photos, swatches anything that inspires you,” says Hazel Nutting from Hazel’s Interiors. “And don’t forget to mention any items that you may want to keep.”

She adds: “When choosing an interior designer, you will need to find someone that you get on well with. I believe that if you like their portfolio it will help the process.”

Hazel’s Interiors created this light and airy country home

When you book an interior designer, what happens next?

When you find an interior designer you think you can work with, the next step is to meet in person and hammer out the details of your project.

“The process starts with a first consultation to find out the details of your project and your personal preferences,” explains Dennis Teepe, from Bespoqe Interiors. “Once appointed as your Interior Designer I will provide you with first design ideas and drafts.”

He adds: “After the concept design has been agreed, I will prepare a detailed design including colour schemes, fabrics and furniture recommendations. Sourcing suitable suppliers, overseeing the order and delivery process as well as project management is all part of our service.”

A stylish fireplace centrepiece courtesy of Bespoqe Interiors

How much does hiring an interior designer cost?

The cost of hiring an interior designer can vary wildly depending on the scope of the job and the experience of the professional in question.

“Anyone can set up as an interior designer, and there are many advertising their services who are both untrained and unqualified,” says Hazel. “Their services may be cheaper but the service you receive will be very different and may not meet your requirements. I would make sure that the designer you choose is both qualified and insured too.”

Every interior designer will work differently and charge accordingly – either by the room, on a percentage basis, or even as a fixed lump sum. Comparing quotes from a selection of qualified pros is the best way to ensure the job is done at a price that works for you.

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Why should you hire an interior designer for your next redecorating project?

Hiring an interior designer to remodel your home does more than just save you weeks of time and effort – it can also save you money.

“Updating and decorating your home can be a daunting process for many who just don’t know where to start or how to make the best decision,” says Hazel. “Interior designers are professional people who will take you through the process without any frustrations.”

She adds: “An interior designer can save you both time and money, providing you with a professional design within your budget and timescale with no costly mistakes.”

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