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You’ll Be Shocked At How Much Interior Design Influences Your Daily Life

Because it’s not just about choosing fabrics and colors. It’s actually a science.

Every year, housing developments increase as the population grows.

With the rise of real estate sales, houses have doubled and families have comfortably moved into their own abodes.

CNBC reports that homes since spring of April 2017 are selling much faster than ever. This rise in demand and a drop in supply can mean more opportunities for interior design.

Trends like house flipping and tiny house living are proof that interior design is becoming a front-runner in people’s lifestyles.

 

Interior Design Is Not Just About Aesthetics

The Center for Health Design has defined evidence-based design (EBD) as the process of using substantial credible research as a helpful tool in designing or building an environment to achieve the best possible outcomes.

One of the disciplines from this definition is interior design.

Although the EBD approach is commonly used in healthcare design, this can also be implemented in your home.

How?

By simply knowing which requirements you have, you will be able to source out materials, furniture, and decor that are suitable for you.

Basically, it means knowing yourself and using that data to personalize your home.

Interior design is not just a surface-level profession as known by many, but its foundation lies deeply in wellness, psychology and spatial relationships.

https://unsplash.com/photos/iYoAPaSPBKI / Author:Alesia Kazantceva

The Effects Of Interior Design On Wellness

 

Interior Design As An Anti-Stress Agent

Your home should be your sanctuary.

It is your place of retreat after a long day of work or activity; a place to unwind, enjoy and be yourself. It should be reflective of your lifestyle and how you want to maintain your welfare.

Since stress is an unavoidable factor in your daily life, your home must help you cope – whether it’s physically, emotionally, socially and/or psychologically.

A study by Gary W. Evans has found that the environment you spend time in has direct and indirect consequences on mental health.

Exposure to poor living conditions can take toll on you. But by ensuring a well-designed home fit for your needs, you can help alleviate tension and give yourself more life satisfaction.

Another research uncovered by the College of Architecture from Texas A&M University revealed that to promote wellness and decrease stress, a general guideline for your home must have the following:

  • Sense of control
  • Access to social support
  • Access to positive distractions and
  • Lack of exposure to negative distractions

The research also provided scientific evidence that nature and anything related such as plants and open window views can be effective as positive distractions in reducing stress.

 

Interior Design Affects Safety And Hygiene

Safety and hygiene are two important things that make up a secure and livable home.

You may think that decoration is what interior design is all about but actuall it plays a crucial role in health care and safety issues.

Interior design largely involves space planning, continuity, ease of access and security measures. For your home this could mean so many things:

  • User-friendliness through ample spaces and easy navigation
  • Safety through preventive measures for accidents, injuries and health risks
  • Privacy through soundproofing, quality building materials, and visual control
  • Effective traffic flow through floor layout and convenience of storage
  • Adjacency through smart space planning and behavioral consideration of the users
  • Equality through establishment of fair amount of spaces for different users

Interior Design And Ergonomics

Ergonomics is a body of science that places emphasis on the biological needs of humans and their environment. This particular data is then used for interior design.

But how do ergonomics and interior design actually work together?

Ergonomic spaces and furniture are not just about the appearance. It’s all about supporting your needs as a homeowner.

Here’s an example: I’m pretty sure you have seen the trend of those beautiful ubiquitous Scandinavian chairs.

I’m talking about the famous Eames Classic Molded Side Chair

https://pixabay.com/p-1527989/?no_redirect / Author:Mrkfnt

This multi-functional chair was made to serve diverse purposes. While the early prototypes were produced with different bases, the one that stood out the most was the Eiffel Tower base (pictured above).

Nowadays the modern version features wooden dowels for its base but retaining its signature shell.

Charles and Ray Eames envisioned that the chair would become recognized for its versatility and comfort while fitting to the contours of the human body.

At present, Vitra now manufactures these Eames Classic Molded Plastic Chairs allowing multiple combinations of bases, shell contours and upholstery to fit even the most unique requirements. With these combinations, the chair can be used in different settings such as work areas, living rooms, and even dining rooms.

How Interior Design Affects Mood And Happiness

According to the 2017 World Happiness Report, one huge factor affecting happiness is mental illness, of which stress is a major symptom.

Work is also another factor that affects happiness – whether it’s about unemployment or the quality of your work-life balance.

The truth is, we spend most of our time indoors – whether at home, at work, or at establishments – we are surrounded by walls.

So when we have a well-developed home, we gain positive and affirming emotions. This in turn promote better social relationships as studies has found.

 

Interior Elements And How They Affect You

Lighting

Studies have found that there is a huge correlation between light and sleep cycle. The type of light you choose for your home can affect your sleep and its quality.

For example, dim lights at night have been found to disturb the daily sleep-wake cycle in rats. It was discovered that exposure to light at night is linked to developing insomnia in humans.

So much so that in fact, there’s a US patent that promotes sleep cycle-friendly LED lights. This patent advocates the positive benefits of stimulating a circadian light cycle similar to nature (such as sunlight).

Lighting plays a critical factor in humans’ mood and sleeps cycle responses.One research stated that while energy and motivation were not dependent on light, there are effects on mood and agreeableness among 32 women that were prevented by bright light. Enhancing of DA (dopamine) function may also be responsible for some of the beneficial effects of light.

Exposure to bright light may also be a possible approach to improving mood. It has been researched as a standard treatment for those with seasonal and nonseasonal depression.

Another factor that affects an easier transition to sleep is the color of the light that you use. Depending on the color, the starting time of sleeping varies. It has been found that sleeping becomes easier in a room with a preferred color light stimulation.

So what this means is that, when decorating your bedroom, you should choose a light that feels comfortable to you. Avoid garish lights and anything that is unnecessary. Have maybe 1 major light fixture and 2 minor ones – these could be a lamp plus night lights or wall sconces.

 

Paint

Paint is one of the basic fundamentals of any home. It’s what makes it more appealing in terms of colors.

However, not a lot of homeowners know what kind of paint to use. Most turn to just about what color they prefer without being aware of the chemical components in the paint.

Before buying your paint at the hardware store, you should know your requirements first and what kind is suitable for your home.

The fact is, most paints contain VOCs which are volatile organic chemicals that can produce toxins and odor. These VOCs have the ability to easily evaporate into the air and that makes them highly susceptible to inhalation.

When choosing your paint, consider what is going to be done in the room. For example, if you are having a nursery, you must only use non-VOC and non-toxic paint otherwise it can pose risks for your baby.

Aside from VOCs, the odor is also another thing you must take note of. Any paint to be applied must first be ensured odorless or minimally odorless.

 

Furnishing

Furnishing is another essential part of your home but just like with paint, they can also release VOCs.

Not is it found in paint, but VOCs can be found in carpeting, vinyl, cabinets and others just to name a few.

When sourcing materials, it’s helpful to know about their sustainable origin such as wood manufacturing. Look for safety standards and certification seals.

Woods like MDF have been known to pose a public threat. This is because of the formaldehyde resins that are used to hold together its parts. Exposure to formaldehyde, no matter how little of the amount, can cause serious irritation to the senses through inhalation. It can also cause problems on the skin such as dermatitis and to the respiratory system with asthma and rhinitis.

So despite the lure of a cheaper alternative to authentic or even laminated wood, MDF does not really give you a run for your money.

Never compromise quality just for the budget.

Here are some sources of certifications you might need to look for:

https://stocksnap.io/photo/Y2AHVPYB51 / Author:Brodie Vissers

Interior Design And Psychology

Psychology is the bedrock of interior design. Without it, the whole discipline will not have substance.

To be able to achieve the ultimate personalized space, an area has to be designed with the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual requirements of the user in mind.

It needs to serve a purpose or solve a challenge.

 

One particular topic that is being incorporated into the interior design discipline is environmental psychology.

There is a direct link between environmental psychology and design and this was used to form the design guidelines that is currently in place right now.

Social science research has been proven to be valuable to designers as the demand for universal design grows. The goal was to be inclusive of various requirements for different social and psychological status.

This includes people on socio-economic margin as well as those with special needs like Alzheimer’s disease, physical and mental disability, victims of abuse and rehabilitating drug users.

As external stimuli affect humans greatly, environments must be designed in a way that reflects the needs of its users and promotes their well-being.

This is why sufficient research is important to create an accurate solution as much as possible.

Behavior also affects interior design in a way where the patterns of human activity dictate the way space is built.

Here are some of the many psychological factors to consider:

  • Age-dependent design
  • Culture & human behavior
  • Child psychology
  • Mental health welfare & disability requirements
  • Collaborative design (especially workspaces)

https://stocksnap.io/photo/0P8F5Y8R67 / Author:Drew Coffman

Interior Design And Spatial Relationships

By now you have known the importance of interior design when it comes to wellness and safety, but there is one more thing that sets it apart from just typical decoration:

Proxemics.

Proxemics is what you call the set amount of space to define the needed distance between people.

But how is this important?

Think of it as privacy and comfort.

When you have good proxemics, everything in your home feels fluid and more “you”. You don’t want your personal space to be too close to the communal areas (unless you do).

For instance, your bedroom should be located at the farthest part of the house as far as possible from the main entry door or living room to avoid all the daytime noise or whenever someone comes over to your house.

Your work area must also not be on the side of the street if you can have it so to maximize your concentration and productivity.

Because the house is where your activity is centered, home spaces must respect the social activity and behavior of its residents.

Traffic flow and adjacency are two very important things you need to remember.

A good example would be the dining room.

Dining rooms must be adjacent to the kitchen no matter what. It needs to cater to social interaction and dining requirements. The number of chairs needed must be proportionate to residents and expected guests.

Since kitchen and dining get the most traffic flow, the materials used in the interior should withstand foot traffic and provide comfort.

In the kitchen, there are complaints coming from many homeowners that hard flooring gives them body aches after some time spending there. Have you noticed this?

Flooring such as concrete, ceramic, porcelain and stone can give you joint aches. So if you are looking for something comfortable go for softer materials like cork, linoleum, rubber and vinyl.

When we’re talking about adjacency, food is being prepared in the kitchen, so it is easier and faster to serve if there would be less footprint distance between the kitchen and the dining room. This speeds up cooking and cleaning as well.

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