Donna Richardson
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How to Create Relaxing Spaces In Your Home

by Donna Richardson 02/11/2020

Image by Kari Shea from Pixabay


 

Have you ever walked into someone's home or office space and instantly felt that it was positive, welcoming and peaceful?  It means more harmonious work with customers and clients and a more peaceful attitude at home.  Imagine walking through your front door and the stresses of the day melting away.

A good design, including color, layout and lighting can help create that environment for you or your business.  Read on to learn more!

Color

To create a relaxing and serene impression, consider using pale blues, which many people find calming.  Aqua and periwinkle are also soothing colors.  Want something warmer?  Peaches are a fresh choice to create a feeling that's more energized, yet welcoming and relaxed. 

For an interesting twist, consider creating a gradated impression with mountains or swaths of gently shifting color either with paint or using wallpaper.  Gradual shifts in color are very soothing to the eye and also make decorating far easier, as it's possible to match with any of the colors present.

For bedrooms, do consider darker colors such as midnight blue on one wall, especially if the bedroom does not include an office space and is used mostly for sleeping.

Layout

One of the decorating maxims is quality over clutter: "buy it once, and buy it right".  If your budget is tight, gather the bare essentials first, and allow yourself a full year to reach the finished, polished look you're going for.  Remember that if it's a home you've purchased, you're going to be living there for years to come: there's no deadline to acquire the perfect look.

Finally, don't purchase furniture that is oversized in order to 'fit' a larger space.  There are two options for larger spaces that seem empty: include more furniture around the central hub of a room (such as a couch, loveseat and two chairs instead of just a couch); or create two hubs of interest in the room.

Lighting

There is little more important to the peace and serenity of a room than natural light!  Be sure that whatever window treatment you use isn't so complex that it takes a great deal of effort rearrange to bring in more light or block it out.  Be careful of overhead lights: they can be overwhelming if too intense.  Finally, concentrate standing lamps in quiet corners that may be used for reading or play.

One of the best things you can do for a room that seems hemmed-in and dark is to knock out the existing windows and add new, larger ones in their place.  This isn't an inexpensive renovation, but it can change the look and feel of a room entirely.

Candles, fireplaces, and string lights are the ultimate in soft, social lighting!  Use these to create an intimate atmosphere.

Living Things

Every room needs a living thing in it, whether that's a standing plant or a fish tank.  Living things bring a touch of the serenity of nature to your space. Here are a few great ideas for indoor plants.

Remember the Other Senses

Keep in mind that the environment where you live and work is not just about looks!  Part of what makes a room feel inviting is texture, scent and sound. 

To create an inviting look, have a variety of soft things to touch in your room, going for quality in whatever rests closest to the body: use high-quality couch pillows and throws, but skimp on curtains, for example.  

Be aware that when it comes to the senses, there's a lot of individual variation regarding what's considered comfortable.  When questioning what scents to use in your home, err on the side of caution: it's better your guests not smell your fresh vanilla plugin than that you give a friend a migraine!  Ask yourself if you notice the scent when you first walk in after a few hours away. If it's a strong smell when you walk in, you should probably back off. 

Unpleasant noise can make a space feel very unwelcoming.  Playing classical or soft acoustic can disrupt irritating noise.  If the outdoor noise is intense, consider getting a white noise machine or asking your home device to play the sound of waves; this blocks out repetitive or unpredictable noise nearby.

Using these tips and tricks, you can create a warm, welcoming space that comforts you, your family and your guests without words.

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