How to Enjoy Your Time at Home (Even During Lockdown)
Just when we thought the pandemic may be easing and life could return to some form of semblance of normality, the virus came back. With another lockdown in place, enjoying the same four walls is hard, especially when home-schooling and working from home beckon. But it looks set to change interior design trends in the coming months too.
Lockdown means only leaving your home when you need to – effectively, this means a short amount of exercise and an occasional trip to the supermarket or to get medication.
Working from home is also the norm. But here’s the thing, working from home for at least part of the working week could become the norm for many of us for weeks, if not months to come. And that means we need to adapt our homes in readiness for this to happen.
And even with the vaccine on the horizon, if we have learnt nothing else from the pandemic it should be to always be prepared for the sting in the tail. And again, that means looking at our homes in a different way and finding essential work-from-home furniture that is adaptable, flexible and beautiful too.
Creating a work-from-home space
Whether you are a singleton or have a family, working from home may become part and parcel of your role. For children too, working at home could also be the new norm for some time.
Creating a workspace means creating a space where productivity can happen – and one that you can ‘close down’ at the end of the day.
If you have the luxury of a spare room, then closing the day after you’ve finished your latest shift at your desk makes sense but it can be harder to separate work and home life when it’s all happening in one space.
Storage solution - Sideboard for hiding away work ‘clutter’
A stylish sideboard is a versatile investment because should work and school get back to normal, you have a stylish piece of living room or dining room furniture. In the meantime, it is ideal for hiding away everything from laptops to folders and more.
Looking at the same walls and the same things…
Another issue that many of us are finding is the feeling of being ‘cooped up’ at home. At one time, we couldn’t wait to clamber in the front door after a busy day at work but now, we can’t wait to get out!
What that means is that some of the design choices we made a few months ago are no longer working. For example, the dramatic navy colour on the living room walls that promised to get us through the winter months now feels oppressive and overpowering.
Not surprisingly, paint manufacturers and interior designers are revising what they see as key trends and colours for the home in the coming months.
Some DIY stores are remaining open and you can buy some paint in supermarkets too during lockdown. Failing that, online retailers are still delivering, a safer way to shop in the current climate and that means, making a few changes is within your grasp…
Colour solution – opt for earthy colours over drama
Dulux Colour of the Year is a warm earthy linen colour they’ve named Brave Ground. Pantone’s Colour of the Year is a neutral but ‘happy’ Ultimate Gray which, it says, works well in union with a vibrant yellow. Both are good options for updating a wall or two in your home.
Focus on luxury in the bathroom
The first lockdown was difficult for many people but with a Netflix subscription and Kindle Unlimited, it felt like nothing more than an extended period of time at home. We all thought that it would be over in a matter of weeks. Very few people appreciated the true gravity of the situation or that a variant on the virus would hit the country at the tail end of the year.
Watching a film or boxset, or indulging in a good book, are still valid means of escapism. But when it comes to your physical space, where is your ‘escape room’?
Creating a space that has a hint of the luxurious staycation vibe about it can make a difference in our mood. All rooms in your home should appeal to all your senses – it should be warm in appearance and touch, clean and embracing.
And that’s why the bathroom could be the escape room you need.
Luxury solution – the spa bathroom
As a rule, we don’t tend to spend time in the bathroom. In a normal day, we would probably spend less than an hour in this room. And that’s why creating a luxurious retreat where we can linger is a great move.
This doesn’t mean having a new bathroom fitted but making a few tweaks…
- De-clutter – those bottles of shampoos and gels may be essential but do they need to be on display? Are they all still in use? Streamline and declutter the bathroom.
- Consider updating storage solutions – high street retailers are using contactless deliveries so there are options to purchase, From under sink storage to DIY solutions, if your bathroom suffers from lack of storage then make find the solution which is right for you.
- Clean, clean and clean – the one thing you’ll notice straight away about a luxurious bathroom is just how super-clean it is. This means whiter-than-white grouting between tiles and a showroom sparkling finish to the bathroom furniture. Include eco-friendly cleaning products on your next supermarket delivery order.
- Monotone colour scheme – with white bathroom furniture, choose a neutral colour for tiles (if you are re-tiling) and a light but warm colour for the walls. If you want a touch of the dramatic, choose one of the many patterned wallpapers designed for the bathroom.
- Add key items – from super fluffy white towels to a houseplant that will enjoy the humidity of the bathroom, a few well-chosen and well-placed accessories will make all the difference.
- Mirrors – and finally, as well as a new coat of paint, add mirrors to the bathroom so that light is optimised in the space.
Drama in the hallway
After your daily exercise, when you arrive home, you want a hallway that says ‘welcome back!’. And yet, it tends to be the least designed space in the home. The time is right to rectify this.
Skill solution – Learn to wallpaper
If you’ve not hung wallpaper before, it can feel a daunting task. But let’s be honest, the hardest bit is handling such large pieces of paper.
It is a skill you can learn – there are hundreds of YouTube tutorials from cutting wallpaper to matching the pattern to tips on how to paper corners and round wall switches – and a great place to try out this new skill is in the hallway.
Create drama in this space by paper a wall or section with one of the many exotic and fun prints on offer (again, you can buy online or order samples).
With a brightened up wall and a few accessories on your hallway console table, it really will be a warm and fun space.
Being at home means you can really make the space work for you and your family. But there are times when you should just sit back and start another boxset or carry on reading a novel (or two)…after all, it’s essential to get that work-life balance!