Lockdown has meant that most of us have been spending much more time within our own four walls. This experience has given us the opportunity to re-evaluate what we want from our homes, both in the short- and longer-term post Covid-19 world.
The signs are that we will be making new demands for our homes in three key areas.
Our Homes Must Offer Flexible Space
During lockdown we transformed our homes into pop-up offices, schools and gyms whilst also needing to provide entertainment and relaxation spaces. As we adapt to the post-Covid world, the need for our homes to be multi-functional will continue.
Smart storage solutions are essential to the success of a multi-functional space, allowing you to put away items that are no longer needed. Floor to ceilings shelves and cupboards are obvious space savers, but seating and beds can also incorporate really useful storage space.
The use of folding furniture is another trick to allow spaces to be quickly and easily reconfigured. There are some really stylish folding desks and tables around and folding chairs can be as comfortable as normal ones. Why not go a step further and think about a lift up bed that disappears into a wall during the day?
Various types of screening can be used to creating dedicated spaces for different activities within a larger space. Partitions made of natural materials or with a striking image are design statements in their own right, but curtains or a tall open shelving units can also be used to section off areas.
Our Homes Must Enhance Our Wellbeing
In uncertain times our homes become our sanctuary where we seek comfort, security and the chance to destress. Thoughtful home design can make a major contribution to our wellbeing.
Decluttering can make a major contribution to reducing anxiety. Having a space for everything and putting things away once you have finished with them, allows you a sense of satisfaction and moving on.
Your choice of colours can have a real impact on your mood. Choosing paint and soft furnishings from a palette of blues, greens and purples will help create a stress-relieving environment.
Providing a connection with outdoors is very important in enhancing wellbeing. This can simply be achieved by having plenty of indoor plants around your home, but if you have a garden or balcony, then patio or bi-fold doors allow a seamless transition between your indoor and outdoor spaces. Having enough natural light is also an important factor in improving mood, so window blinds or sheer fabrics are good choices rather than heavy curtains.
Homes Must Be Clean And Hygienic
Interior design will increasingly reflect our new concern with hygiene as we seek to make our homes a haven, safe from potential external sources of contamination.
Porches and hallways will need storage to allow people to remove outdoor clothing and footwear and avoid bringing germs into the home. Ideally, this is where facilities for washing hands should also be available.
There will be a trend to incorporate more easily cleanable surfaces particularly in the bathroom and kitchen. Tiling with germ-harbouring grout can be replaced by an easy to clean and water-resistant backsplash. Materials with natural antimicrobial properties such as cork or vinyl will gain in popularity, especially for flooring.
The increasing use of smart technology incorporating voice and motion sensing will allow us to minimize contact with potentially germ harbouring switches, handles and knobs. These features will be especially important in the kitchen and bathroom.
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