Interior Design with Intention: How Biophilic Design Affects Quality of Life
Stacey Lapuk, ASID
Do you ever think about how you feel when you walk into a room? Whether you are consciously aware of it or not, interior design has a profound impact on human health, emotions, and wellbeing. That is why it is so important to design with intention and consider quality carefully.
There is a reason why spaces are designed to be a certain way. With intentional interior design, you are not just purchasing a piece of furniture. You are also investing in every moment that you will spend sitting on it and the feelings you experience when you do. You are creating moments, and memories.
Your experience with your environment dictates your quality of life. When you surround yourself with quality and the creations of the “maker’s hand,” your body’s intuitive response is to match that resonance now in the space around you. Your environment will affect your mood, your mental wellbeing, and even your physical health.
One of my favorite ways to enhance the quality of an environment is through biophilic design. According to the EPA, most of us spend about 90 percent of our time indoors. Yet, as biological organisms, we have an innate need to connect to the natural world beyond our windows. Biophilic design facilitates that connection through the incorporation of organic shapes, patterns, and materials; earthy colors, proper ventilation, foliage, daylight, and the scents and sounds of nature in the built environment. The concept goes far beyond adding a plant to the corner of your living room.
Studies have shown that biophilic design can elevate mental health, improve cognitive abilities, and regulate physiological functions within the body. In a survey conducted by Interface of more than 7,500 people, it was found that employees who were exposed to natural elements in their workspace showed an increase of 6% in productivity and 15% in creativity. The survey also found that employees who had access to a window with a view of nature recovered more quickly from stress than those who did not.
High-quality biophilic design has a higher resonance, and the proof is not just on paper. Case in point: my good friend, Sally, recently stayed at an Auberge Resort. Set against the rolling hills and open space of Napa’s wine country, the resort is designed to bring guests closer to nature through an impressive offering of outdoor experiences and luxurious comforts that are customized to the resort’s ranch land roots. Guests can enjoy activities such as hiking, fishing, cycling, falconry presentations, and exclusive dining experiences in the great outdoors. Additionally, the resort features views of the surrounding landscape, indoor/outdoor living concepts, and warm, rustic materials that are sustainable.
Sally returned from her stay feeling the powerful effects of her time spent in nature. She described it as a restorative experience for her mind, body, and soul. By surrounding herself with thoughtful biophilic design elements, her wellbeing was also elevated to correspond with the level of quality in her environment. She found a sense of renewal at the resort and came home feeling less stressed, with a greater sense of focus.
Biophilic design is a powerful way to design with intention and improve your quality of life. If you need support implementing biophilic design elements in your home, consider booking a call with us. We are always happy to be of service!
Stacey Lapuk, ASID is celebrating her 30th year with her firm. Named “One of America’s Ten Designers To Watch” by Design Times Magazine, one of the “Top 100 Interior Designer in North America” by Blink Art Resources, and the winner of multiple national design awards. Her goal is simple: To co-create with her clients the home of their dreams with responsive and comprehensive solutions, and timeless, beautiful results.
Her full service firm attracts clients desiring the finest workmanship, materials and custom design. Facets of work include partnering with architects on new construction, remodels, kitchen design and bath design, color consultation, custom furniture, flooring, area carpets, wall and window treatments, lighting design, art procurement and antique acquisition. Service areas include but are not limited to Marin County, San Francisco, Napa, Sonoma, Ross, Kentfield, Belvedere, Tiburon, San Rafael, and Pacific Heights.