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how to incorporate biophilic design at home

Greens and tile moodboard/Photography: Edward Jenner/A few simple hacks for choosing materials, paints, and indoor plants that can make your home greener.

Green isn't just a trending color. Biophilic design, so often represented by all hues of green, can also improve your peace of mind. Simply put, "biophilic design is connecting people with nature in buildings to affect wellbeing," says paint consultant and former PPG Paints colorist and trend expert, Dee Schlotter, who recently completed a biophilic design project. 

"Research shows that incorporating biophilic elements can decrease anxiety, create a calm and nurturing space, even greatly reduce the need for pain medication in hospitals. Incorporating natural light or excellent lighting, ventilation, local materials, in addition to the above elements in your home can create a calm, restful space," she points out. 

"Think about your earliest memories and places that make you feel good," explains Dee. "Usually, they are around nature: backyards, grass, sky, trees. Vacations are planned in the mountains, at oceans and lakes. Placing nature in our everyday surroundings can make a big difference in our wellbeing. Biophilic design incorporates those elements to bring nature to you." 

Neutral residential hallway with plants/Photography: Ksenia Chernaya/The right mix of indoor plants and natural-toned paints can increase the sense of peace and ease in a home.


So, how can you connect with nature at home? "'Stay close to nature; it will never fail you,'" is the answer, an axiom attributed to Frank Lloyd Wright, points out Dee. Embark on some simple steps: Buy indoor plants; move your desk towards an outdoor-facing window; choose wood or stone with "lots of texture," and opt for textiles that "incorporate natural fractals or patterns, like images of leaves, trees, and water." 

For paint choices, the options are endless. Narrow down on organic colors. "Greens are an obvious pick for a biophilic palette; sage greens and gray-greens all look great with wood tables, floors, and ceiling beams," she says.

"Chartreuse is a spring green that is perfect for high energy spaces: playrooms with a lot of natural light, for instance. Deep, black greens represent the colors found in the deep forest, and blues and aquas offer a feeling of calm,  connected to views of water and horizons." Don't sleep on yellows, either. "Warm yellows can make a room sunny and bright on even the grayest days," says Dee. Happy painting! 

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Adam GreenBenjamin Moore

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