Home & Head: How to Design Spaces with Mental Health in Mind

As many of us continue to work remotely or in a hybrid capacity, spending more time at home has become inevitable.

woman in black tank top and blue denim jeans sitting on brown sofa

The design of our personal space is subconsciously at the forefront of our minds, whether you’re aware or not, it has become a major contributing factor to our overall well‑being. At Parker Howley & Co, we want to help you discover the impact, both positive and negative, our homes can have on our mental health, and explore just how you can optimise and organise your living environment to improve your overall wellness, as well as happiness.

Our home is meant to be the space we get away from the world, the place to relax and unwind. In a way it’s the one place we can be truly ourselves; where we let our worries fade away. However, this is not always the case, our living spaces can be overwhelming, filled with clutter, housing unfinished projects, or full of constant reminders of jobs we need to complete – not always the comfy, calming refuge we dream of.

4 Interior Design Tips for Improved Mental Health

Reducing feelings of stress starts by creating a living space that supports the inner calmness within us. It’s all about attention to detail, even the smallest components such as patterns, colours and shapes cannot be overlooked. We recommend keeping these 5 interior design principles in mind when designing for health.

Celebrate Colour

Colour has an undeniable power to evoke feelings and help us relive memories, it can even impact our alertness and productivity. The psychology of colour is huge, so it’s no wonder we can spend hours on end browsing the paint aisle at our local DIY store wondering which palette suits our walls, however, the decision doesn’t have to be a difficult one.

There are several theories relating to colours, especially surrounding those that make us feel calm and relaxed. Typically these calming colours are not very saturated and carry light undertones, such as beiges, sage greens and dusty blues. Nevertheless, we feel the most important thing you can do when choosing colours for your home is thinking about what really resonates with you. While shades of green may be said to boost creativity, and hues of blue said to increase peace and serenity in the bedroom – think about what you love, if it’s bright bold colours full of character, go for it! At the end of the day your home is your space.

Bring The Outside In

Bringing in natural elements to your interior, such as exposing more natural light or growing houseplants can have a positive effect on your well‑being. Constantly seeing and being around plants can help us feel more calm and relaxed which in turn decreases our levels of anxiety, thus boosting our mood.

If you’re not blessed with green fingers then you can always opt for artificial alternatives that require little to no maintenance – just the odd dust from time to time.

If greenery isn’t your style then consider incorporating natural elements into your space through furniture made with natural or reclaimed wood, or selecting wood flooring over carpeting, for example.

Did you know? At Parker Howley, we use UK sourced raw materials and natural timber to create our fully bespoke furniture. We believe in the power of wholly ethical carpentry that is British sourced and British made to boost the economy, support local trade and reduce the carbon footprint of the furniture industry by keeping travelling distance to a minimum.

Get The Balance Right

Balance visually stabilises a space. It feels calm, well thought out and flows. When a room is off-balance it creates feelings of visual dissonance and sometimes even discomfort. It’s difficult for your mind to be at peace when components are not working in a harmonious arrangement.

Creating this well balanced space isn’t about every piece of furniture following the exact measurements or adhering to the same sets of rules. It’s about elevating focal points, and ensuring everything feels in its place.

More than any other room in the house, the kitchen is the place people struggle to find balance as it is designed to accommodate multiple functions. In order to create a tranquil, considered space that’s aesthetically pleasing as well as functional we suggest designing from the centre point of the room so you can visualise what will stand out in your line of view. A well designed kitchen island that unifies your kitchen equally will provide a sense of balance and flow.

If you boast a longer, narrow kitchen you could incorporate your island as a breakfast bar with stool seating, alternatively if you’ve got lots of space, you could accomodate sinks and appliances within your island for maximum usability. Small kitchens don’t have to miss out either, as bespoke neat structures with built-in cabinets can be specially made to enhance those tight dimensions.

The important concept to remember here is the triangle; primary kitchen tasks are carried out between the oven, sink and refrigerator, when these elements are in a comfortable position of each other, the space will function efficiently.

Declutter Your Space

Decluttering your space is an easy, effective way to reduce stress as it can help you feel calmer and more in control. A cluttered environment makes it difficult to find what you need and removing visual clutter can help you focus better on your tasks in hand.

Improving your living space can ignite feelings of competency and pride, however this is not always easy when you’re tight on space, especially that for storage. We don’t all have the space to incorporate walk-in wardrobes or understairs cupboards for example. What you can do is look at the space to do have and explore ways in which you can use it much more effectively.

Take your bathroom for example, if you’ve got a stand alone sink, you could consider a bespoke vanity unit which is completely customisable to your needs, from sizing, style to colours and finish. They’re great for couples and families alike for storing excess toiletries and bathroom essentials to free the space and to add to its luxe relaxed vibe.

Tall boys are also a fabulous addition for bathrooms, bedrooms and living spaces for those short on room as these tall slim drawers offer all the elegance, with tons of functionality.

If you’re feeling inspired to elevate your home with a brighter, refined yet cosy feel, please get in touch or browse our gallery of designs to discover how Parker Howley & Co can give your bedroom or bathroom an uplifted personalised, luxury look. You’ll also be able to explore our collection of hand-crafted kitchen islands, coffee tables, bookshelves and more!

While you’re here, be sure to also check out our Instagram page @parkerhowley_n_co for stunning real life photos from our satisfied life customers!

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