How Interior Design Affects my Life as a Writer
26 Apr by Jasmine Bowen
Hey readers! For this week’s article, we have a slightly different style for you. We reached out to Jasmine Bowen, a professional writer from Canada who shares her view on interior design, and how it affects her everyday life as a creative working from home. Without further ado, we’ll hand it over to Jasmine.
Now for a bit of context, I’m lucky enough to make my living as a full-time creative writer.
My job has its pros and cons. I won’t go into those now, as that is a different topic for a different day. But in short, the main “pro” is that I can make my own hours. So long as I meet my deadlines. The main “con” is that my scenery never really changes. That’s why I wanted to learn more about interior design to see how it affects my life, and I wanted to share with you all what I’ve learned about myself.
I think it’s fair to say that over the past few years most of us have spent more time in our own homes than ever before. For better or worse that has made many of us take a new look at our immediate surroundings. I know I sure have. After all, over-familiarity can sometimes breed contempt, right?
That being said, I spent a lot of time thinking about interior design. Specifically, I’ve been thinking about how interior design affects our lives. But on a more personal and direct level, I began thinking about how interior design or lack thereof affects my life as a writer. My overall moods, my creativity and so on. After all, if you live and work in the same space you shouldn’t have to spend most of your waking hours in an environment that makes you feel “meh”. Of course, there are various interior design styles out there meaning there is no one size fit’s all solution.
Interior design does have a bigger impact on us than we may realise. As you can imagine there are a lot of factors that go into how various interior design styles can impact our lives.
As you probably already know this isn’t a new concept. The idea of how our personal space can affect our mood has been studied for hundreds of years. The connection between our environment and how it makes us feel is absolutely real.
The interior design of a space can affect many many things including our stress and anxiety levels, creativity and productivity. The right environment can make us feel happy and productive. The absolute worst can invoke panic attacks.
If you’re interested in taking your love and/or curiosity to the next level, I absolutely recommend taking an interior design course to help further your understanding beyond this blog or what you might find on YouTube.
On that note, if you’re looking to further your knowledge and skills as a creative writer, I do highly recommend the Fashion & Lifestyle Writing Diploma that LCS offers. It’s a great course for anyone interested in becoming a creative writer.
Colours Influence Moods
One thing that most interior design courses will emphasise is that colours in the room can influence a person’s mood. I know that sounds like a basic bit of advice in terms of interior design styles, especially if you’re familiar with our colour analysis course, but it is one that people still take for granted.
For example, the colour red is a colour that’s often linked to feelings of love, and power. Having a moderate amount of red in your own environment can make it feel warmer and more inviting.
If you are looking to add a more energetic feeling to your space, I recommend several splashes of orange as it’s a feel-good colour that represents laughter and companionship.
However, if you are looking for a colour that inspires feelings of happiness and creativity I would recommend adding yellow to your space. Yellow invokes the same emotions you feel when you take a walk on a bright and sunny day.
Green is a great colour to inspire feelings of nature, being outside and good health. Especially useful when you’re stuck inside.
The fact is that creating a space that influences mood requires an in-depth knowledge of colour and the way colours work harmoniously.
Effective Use Of Space
I have a friend who likes their space to be messy. He calls it “organized chaos”. He would also tell you that this is his preferred interior design style. I don’t know about you, but too much clutter drives me absolutely crazy. In fact, I’ve found in myself that having clutter around actually makes me feel anxious.
At least in my case, a big reason for that is it makes my space feel claustrophobic. Especially if you live (and/or) work in an environment with limited space.
I’ve found it’s always a good idea to go through a “spring cleaning” process and get rid of things I no longer need. At the very least it frees up space and removes the feeling of the things that you own, owning you.
If I have things that I am sure I can’t live without there are plenty of options for me. Sometimes a simple storage solution from your local IKEA or another big box store can make all of the difference. I know for a fact that if I am feeling particularly anxious I’ll look around my space and see what I can clean up. Even those five minutes of organizing my space are enough to elevate my mood. As my mood elevates, so does my productivity.
A simple rule I follow is to always make my bed on days I’m working. Seems silly, right? After all, it’s not like I expect anyone reading this to judge me on if I made my bed today. The point I’m trying to make is that one little task sets the tone for my day. It allows me to feel in control of my environment right from the start. For a lot of people that is where anxiety starts. That feeling of losing control.
That is exactly why I found that decluttering my personal space is a great thing. I also found it was a great way to show off my own interior design style.
Plant-life Can Lead To A Happy Life
Full disclosure here, I am not a “plant person”. I live in an apartment without a balcony so I don’t have a garden. Plants have just never held much interest for me unless they are on my plate.
That is to say, I wasn’t a “plant person” until my sister decided to gift me one. To my surprise, it actually did help my mood quite a bit. A moment ago I mentioned how having green in your space can invoke feelings of nature. But having a plant or a few really drives that point home.
Most interior design courses will at least touch on the fact that having plants in your environment can improve one’s memory retention and concentration while at the same time reducing stress. This is something I was actually sceptical of myself until I was gifted the plants I mentioned.
As you might have guessed or known already, those aren’t the only benefits of having plants in your immediate environment. Along with being a great way to add a sense of colour and style to your place, having real plants in your environment also has several health benefits.
It’s no secret that plants both produce oxygen but also reduce humidity in space. These two elements go a long way to improving a person’s mood.
Let’s just take a broader example of how green spaces can affect an environment. Specifically, most major cities have several parks. The reason is simple, cities can look drab, ugly and depressing. At the very least having a bright beautiful park/forest area adds a needed splash of colour and life to an otherwise cold and uninviting environment.
As such, I’ve found that having plants in my home and/or office is a great way to add a bit of my own interior design style with a dash of personal flair.
Lighting Can Make All The Difference
A friend once told me that “dark spaces create dark moods”. Especially in terms of interior design, that is absolutely true. If you work in a mainly windowless environment devoid of much natural sunlight, take a walk outside on a sunny day. I’ve been there.
Without fail the moment that sunlight hits my face my mood perks up. Much the way that a cloud covered day is depressing for many people.
To that end, if you have windows that are covered with heavy curtains try replacing them with a lighter material that allows light to get in. If privacy is a concern for you, you can always put a plastic privacy film on your window. This obstructs the view of the inside of your apartment while letting in that wonderful natural light.
I’ve also found that using lightbulbs/lighting fixtures that offer a more natural tone is helpful. Avoid those soul-crushing halogen lights that fill so many old offices.
Of course, it’s all about balance. I’ve found that too much light combined with bright coloured walls and accents can make my space feel blown out. But just the right amount of natural light can make all the difference. If you are in a space that only has one real source of natural light, try adding a few reflective surfaces to carry the light. Again another great way to show off your own interior design style.
As you can see there are a lot of factors that go into how interior design can affect our lives. Since deciding to learn about this topic I’ve realised that there are countless ways I can change my immediate environment. A great way to learn more is to take an interior design course. I really hope that this article helped you take another look at your own environment. At the very least maybe you were able to look around your space and get some new design ideas. Remember there are no “wrong” answers to interior design as personal taste is always subjective.