If the second world war asked people to keep calm and carry on, this pandemic has asked us all to stay home and stay safe. Back in May, a few months into the pandemic we had looked at how the lockdown has changed the way we think about our homes. That was the time people were still getting used to the idea of their home as a bubble they couldn’t escape. Home is no longer a retreat from the outside, but the centre of all our activities, where we work, study, socialise, exercise, and entertain ourselves.
As this year ends and we’re looking ahead at 2021, the thing we can be certain about is that we will continue to spend a lot of our time at home, and homes will continue to change and adapt to our new needs.
The good news is our living spaces are likely to change for the better as we get more connected to them. More people have understood the importance of how homes are integral to our quality of life. Good interior design is not just about decorating and adding pretty things, but about creating a space that is good for our mental and physical wellbeing. This shift in thinking has come not just from the extended time we’ve spent at home through the year, but the shift it had brought in our lives, our values and habits, and that will influence our home spaces.
We spoke to a cross-section of architects and designers to look ahead at the new resolutions that will be adopted in homes in 2021:
GIVE ME GREEN
What used to once be trendy, is now a necessity. Urban farming and its variations like vertical and indoor gardens will be a big part of our lives. We all know that green spaces are good for our mental health and to reduce stress. For those of us who cannot afford gardens, there is always space for plants on window sills. For many people who were already growing plants, the quarantine time has been used to learn more about soil and seeds and growing your own food. Biophilia, a term that was coined in 1964, to describe the innate human instinct to connect with nature, will take over 2021.
Take a look at our guide for farming at home with Hydroponics here.
MY YEAR OF HYGGE
Urban farming and its variations like vertical and indoor gardens will be a big part of our lives. Image courtesy, Followtheflow/ shutterstock.com
For the last few years, every winter we hear of the Danish term hygge, to describe the feeling of cosy contentment that comes with enjoying the simple things in life. This year has taught us how to find our own version of hygge in our homes. Danish homes even have little nooks or hyggekrog where you can feel cosy. Our homes of 2021 will all have more hyggekrog, and the great thing is, we need very little to feel cosy, candles, handmade pottery, reading chairs, throw pillows, soft furnishings, succulents, bring your own hygge idea.
Here’s a list of indulgent products for creating your hygge.
People will be creating new structures to work from home. Styled by Nidhi Tiwari, Photography by Prachi Damle
A SMART OFFICE IN MY HOME
There was a time when some of us, would carve out working space at home and that mostly meant a desk and a chair tucked away in a corner somewhere. But this year as work from home became the norm, people had to contend with things they never thought of, like sitting for long hours on uncomfortable dining chairs, or toddlers and pets interrupting conference calls. Next year, people will be creating new structures to work from home, like office pods with sliding walls, adjustable desks that can be used for adults to work and children to study, ergonomic chairs. Think comfort, privacy and productivity, all from home.
Use these ideas to transform any available space into a home office.
BY EVENING, MY YOGA ROOM WILL TURN INTO A PLAYROOM
The concept of a home which has a living room, a dining room and bedrooms, is gone for now, if not forever, says Madhav Raman, architect and partner at the Delhi-based studio Anagram Architects. “Every room has an additional purpose in the home now, the spare room is used for people to isolate if need be, or it is a space for the children to study, or for the adults to work. The balcony is a space for the family to get together and not just to stash their plants. Every room is a flexible space.” This may change the way rooms are designed as they become multi-functional.
Make the most of your home with these tips.
I WILL DIY TILL I DROP
The pandemic has made us question our lifestyle - what we buy, where it is sourced from, if it’s made ethically, are questions we are thinking more of. For some, that has meant that the home will reflect the shift in values towards minimalism, buying local, and do-it-yourself home improvement trends. Artist and printmaker Dhvani Behl who has lived in her Delhi home through the year, has been using the quarantine time to make things for her home, from a velvet and silk blanket to hand-stitched cushion covers and a macramé lampshade, with a basket sourced from the village next to where she lives. “In India, we are very used to other people doing things for us. I feel I’ve got a new understanding of my environment by learning to do things myself. I even upholstered my own sofa,” she says.
Try this fun DIY with all the cardboard boxes you don’t need.
PLEASE KNOCK AT MY POCKET DOOR
Open floor plans had become the buzziest trend in home design in the last few years. And then came the pandemic and suddenly people found that they needed little pockets of privacy in their home, to work, to study, to work out, and sometimes just to get a break from the family. Screen walls, dividers, pocket doors, that help define spaces for flexible use, are the new buzzwords, and we are likely to see them in the homes of the future.
Use these room divider ideas to define spaces at home.
TAKE A MOMENT TO SANITISE AT MY FOYER
Those of us who live in polluted cities were already getting used to air purifiers, now get ready for the whole hog, from air quality monitors for the home to germ-resistant floors, surfaces and fabrics, and ultraviolet lights to kill viruses. And wait a minute, you can’t just enter without pausing at the foyer to leave the outdoors behind. For the foyer is where you will sanitise hands, remove shoes, or store packages from online delivery. And so the entryway or the foyer, which had thus far, never received any attention, have become the focal point of a home and will go from being aesthetic to more and more functional.
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