Biophilic Design

Due to the coronavirus outbreak and social distancing guidelines, many of us are spending far more time in our homes than ever before. Why not use this time to make your space as enjoyable as possible? One way you can do this is by implementing one of the top design trends of Spring 2020, biophilic design. It’s more than just a trend and can help combat loneliness and anxiety during this stressful time.

What is Biophilic Design?

Biophilic design is all about mixing elements of human design and nature in a way that doesn’t seem manufactured. It dates back to the Islamic Golden Age. During that time, higher education buildings applied specific architectural and design techniques to encourage intellectual curiosity through direct and indirect contact with nature. The term “biophilia,” which translates to “love of nature,” was popularized by American biologist Edward Wilson in 1984 when he wrote a book about the aesthetic.

Scientific research proves that it is psychologically and physiologically fundamental for us to feel a part of nature on a regular basis. We are built to have personal aesthetic experiences and reactions to the natural environment. Being in these environments helps us thrive and can improve our moods.

How to Incorporate Biophilic Design into Your Home

You can incorporate biophilic design into your home in many different ways. For example, you can add houseplants, natural elements like wood, and water features. Finding ways to let natural light into your home is also a part of biophilic design. Activating all your senses through sounds and scents helps create a biophilic environment. 

Add Houseplants to Your Space

Houseplants don’t just serve the purpose of making your home more beautiful. Studies show that taking care of plants can be therapeutic and reduce blood pressure. Plants give off oxygen and make a space more lively. Different plants can help clean air, reduce dust, absorb chemical fumes from plastic, or remove allergens. For this reason, plants like the pothos, gerbera daisy, and peace lilies make great air filters.

Entry way with houseplants, wooden bench, and natural fiber rug

Incorporating plants into your home also creates a new hobby or pastime. If taking care of plants intimidates you, start with ones that are easy to grow like snake plants, kalanchoe, and jade plants.

Plants can be placed anywhere in your home, just make sure to choose the right space for the right plant. Each plant will require different levels of light, heat, and humidity.

Living room sporting biophilic design elements such as unstained wooden furniture and botanical art

Biophilic elements include unstained wooden furniture and house plants. Botanical artwork also helps bring a touch of nature to your space.

Example of biophilic design, a living room with wooden coffee table and houseplants

Tall indoor plants like the fiddle-leaf fig on the left can create bold statements. Cactuses can also make a statement and many are low-maintenance. The large windows and wooden coffee table in this room also add to the biophilic design. 

Set Up Your Workspace Near a View

If you’re working from home, it helps to have an office with a view if you can. Especially if it’s overlooking natural elements, such as a body of water. We have an intrinsic desire to see beyond our immediate surroundings. Our desire to see over long distances dates back to an anthropological theory of survival. Examples of interior design elements that help us achieve this desire include balconies, open floor plans, and skylights.

Home office with a view of the ocean

If you are unable to create an office with a view, you can still implement the biophilic trend by keeping a plant nearby or a vase of flowers on your desk. 

Get more inspiration for making a statement with large indoor plants »

I hope this post has inspired you to add natural elements to your home to bring more peace and joy into your life.