Now more than ever, people have been trying to express the need to reconnect back to nature. Biophilia was initially described as “the passionate love of life and of all that is alive” in The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness by Eric Fromm, an American psychoanalyst. It is believed that biophilia not only a physiological matter but it has a genetic basis for this longing in humans whether to just take a walk in nature or just look at it. Biophilia has been around as early as the Babylonian era — if you are an architecture nerd, you probably are familiar with the Hanging Gardens of Babylon for example. It may seem that it has re-emerged in our current times as a trend, but in reality, it is more like a way of living that has existed long ago.
Biophilia has a plethora of benefits not only to our environment, economy but mostly to our wellbeing. Studies have shown that applying this practice into our indoor environment can reduce stress, anxiety, help with productivity, and even increase the quality of life. This might be particularly helpful with our current times as most of us are limited to staying indoors. This practice transcends into design and architecture through different dimensions and aims to lessen the impact of our separation with nature by bringing natural elements indoors in a way that mimics outdoor environments.
Here are some easy tips in making your space into a biophilic sanctuary for your well-being.
Sunshine state of mind
You can start by letting ample light into your space by opening your windows and let the air circulate through the place. Layer your curtains with some lighter fabrics to allow natural light in.
Spruce up your interiors with some greens. Creating your own herb garden is always a good idea to add some flavor into your home, you can easily create one near your window or on your balcony. There’s also an entire selection of cult favorites for low maintenance indoor plants you can choose from, like the snake plant, monstera deliciosa, fiddle leaf fig, zz plant, aloe vera, succulents, and the list goes on. Try to incorporate plants of varying heights and textures and cluster some of them together to mimic the random way plants appear in nature. Plants are a great way to filter air indoors and did you know that they also help in reducing noise?
If buying plants is not in your budget, no problem! When you walk through nature, it could be just from your garden, you can pick your own flowers and arrange them nicely or even air-dry them. Not a fan of flowers? You can also forage some gorgeous branches to fill your room and create an artful focal point. Biophilia can also be cost-saving!
Add some other natural elements into your space. You can incorporate different natural elements like water, earth, or even fire. These can be easily achieved by adding small things like a fountain or an aquarium, by making miniature Japanese rock garden, or even by diffusing essential oils can enhance your senses. Another great option is decorative moss. Aside from being low maintenance, it also enhances the mood because of its natural vibrant greens and its miniature field aesthetic. Pair it up with some wooden frames and a few sticks and stones, then you have yourself a natural decor that may last a lifetime.
Find your inner balance by creating a sanctuary where you can spend time for yourself. May it be a yoga area, a hobby desk, a meditation corner, or it can be anything you want! Enhance your space by layering foliage and decorative objects into your sanctuary or position your space near natural light. Make sure to keep it separate from common areas so you can have your little hideaway.
Interestingly, styling biophilic interiors does not necessarily need to fully involve plants in creating that environment. Try incorporating natural textures and calming colors into your space. Natural woods, natural fibers, stone, and earthenware are some of the materials that would help create that ambiance. You can also place nature-inspired artworks or paint your walls into calming neutral tones that mimic nature.
Ro So is a creative based in Milan whose work spans interiors, furniture and objects. She is fuelled by her curiosity of her surroundings and believes that design is a lifestyle, whether she is designing, or just discovering spaces and experiences. Trained as an Interior Designer, her eye for good design comes second nature to her; she spends a lot of her time immersed in the design scene scoping out what’s new while sipping away that espresso.
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