As we head into a new year with uncertainties looming on several fronts, we consider the influence our immediate surroundings can bring to bear on our everyday lives.
When surrounded by instability and unrest, a place to retreat becomes vital – a space in which we feel secure, relaxed and able to replenish our reserves to tackle the good, bad or ugly that lies ahead. Michelle Ogundehin, former editor in chief of Elle Decoration, writer and design consultant comments “Design is rarely conceived in a vacuum, and statements of style are always a response to what’s happening in the world at large“; a particularly poignant sentiment currently and so, we join Michelle in looking at 2019 as the year that wellness truly needs to come home.
The scope for our homes to impact our wellbeing shouldn’t be underestimated. What we surround ourselves with becomes part of our personal history, legacy and life story. Our surroundings as personal places, now potentially more so than ever, need to enable us to consider how we may contribute positively to our own futures, those of our family, friends and colleagues. And, by extension, society at large.
We have the opportunity to become less concerned with our home as a showcase of the latest trends and momentary fads and instead look for something authentic with integrity to create a haven to which we can retreat when times get tough.
As we continue to reject the disposable culture and embrace a more sustainable way of living for generations to come, we can take our cue from times past; embracing products, materials and finishes that evoke a sense of familiarity and comfort. In this instance, the warmth and inherent tactility of natural materials step forward – marble, stone, stoneware, earthenware and porcelain – and of course, our personal favourite – wood in all its glory. A tactile, sensory antidote to the super-slick technological world we occupy is needed.
We work in partnership with our clients to integrate considered designs into their homes that add value to their everyday lives, not just the building in which they reside. Their surroundings have the ability to make a daily difference to their lives and we look to help our clients create a setting that meets their needs on a variety of human levels.
In 2019, designers needs to be seen to be making differently. A positive difference can be brought about if re-examine how we treat ourselves and our immediate surroundings so we can stand ourselves in good stead to bring about the positive change we wish to see around us. And that is beginning to look pretty vital for our collective sanity, our society at large and, ultimately, our planet.