While designing a home’s interior aesthetic, I find joy in intentionally finding ways to cultivate a peaceful refuge. Take a look at these seven recommendations to curate feelings of peacefulness in your own home environment and make space in life for what matters.
There is a strong correlation between physical clutter and the experience of psychological clutter. I love the recommendation of author and poet William Morris to “have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.” Take time to tidy and tuck away (or give away) items you no longer find useful or aesthetically pleasing. Clearing your space of clutter will allow you to experience a home with fewer distractions and more intentionally curated calm. Joshua Becker, the author at Becoming Minimalist, has wonderful, practical recommendations
on starting this process.
*Disclaimer - House of Inverness has no affiliate relationship with any of the companies or linked websites below. These are simply products and sites we personally enjoy and use!
2. Play Ambient Music: Choose a playlist that conveys a peaceful ambiance. I love soft jazz and the soothing background sounds of lovely piano chords. Music is, of course, a very personal choice, so what translates as peaceful and calm to me may be very different from the style you choose in your home. In my home, I find Paul Cardall’s soothing instrumentals to be an absolutely lovely backdrop, and my sister enjoys this mix in her home.
3. Choose Calming Colors: The concept of color psychology is fascinating and incredibly helpful when designing a space with intentionality – you may be interested to learn what the colors you gravitate to convey. My home has a neutral, consistent color palette chosen intentionally to create seamless transitions from one space to the next. A soft, wall color paired with aesthetic elements of blue (tied to feelings of peacefulness and serenity and found to lower blood pressure) and green (evocative of nature and tied to feelings of security and tranquility) creates a setting I consider to be calming and peaceful. If you don’t have the option to paint but would like to incorporate color, consider leveraging wallpaper decals, an artfully draped throw blanket in your signature color, or a large piece of art that conveys the soothing aesthetic you’re most drawn to. I love both this inexpensive large art tutorial and this large art DIY (from a shower curtain!) by the husband-and-wife duo behind Blesserhouse.com.
4. Select Natural, Organic Aesthetics: Nature has soothing effects, and including plants and organic materials in your decor will help convey the rejuvenate qualities of nature into your home. There’s design intentionality behind this with a theory called Biophilic Design, or Biophilia, which translates to “the love of nature.” As online Architecture publication ArchDaily shares, “The guiding principle [of Biophilic Design] is quite simple: connect people with nature to improve their well-being and quality of life.” How to do this at home? Select natural elements to incorporate in your decor: branches in a vase, organic textiles for curtains and furniture upholstery, natural wood finishes, a stone decorative accent, etc.
5. Illuminate with Intentionality: Soft lighting and natural light (as often as possible!) convey a sense of warmth, comfort and peace to the home environment. This helpful article, “Mood Changes: Why Lighting is the Most Important Design Feature,” shares that “natural light improves mood and can help make falling asleep easier. Spending your day in areas that are enhanced by natural light can improve the function of your circadian rhythm, which can increase your happiness and energy levels.” Sounds like the perfect ingredient to a calm and peaceful home to me!
6. Place Furniture with Purpose:
Angle furniture to maximize the views from your windows – seeing the beauty of the outdoors while curled in a cozy spot brings peace.
- Create areas that are intentionally curated for relaxation, meditation and moments of stillness. I love having sitting areas near a window where I can pause to reflect and recharge.
Include sitting area accents that maximize your comfort and promote the purpose of the space: a lovely set of coasters (like these stunning marble and wood coasters!) for a warm cup of tea with a dear friend; a small table on which to set your gratitude journal; a cozy blanket to curl up with and a candle.
7. Incorporate Scent: Aromas are a powerful associator. How often does the scent of a certain perfume remind you of a specific individual, the smell of fresh cut grass recall happy childhood summers, or the aroma of mulled spices bring cozy Christmas gatherings to mind? Is there a certain scent you are drawn to with particular fondness? Consider candles or diffusers that convey that aroma in your home, tying it to the essence of your environment’s ambiance. Lately, I’ve been particularly drawn to this Lavender and Almond Blossom air freshener – the moment the scent is pleasantly misted into the air, I instantly feel a sense of calm and comfort.
Which of these ideas are you trying in your home as you curate a refuge of peacefulness and calm amidst the fast-paced world in which we live? What specific colors and scents are tied to a peaceful moment at home for you?