People will continue to spend more time at home in 2021. So, let’s look at ways to create spaces that make us feel at peace with our surroundings.

Because of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, many people are again ‘cocooning’ – a term coined in 1981 by trend forecaster and marketing consultant Faith Popcorn.

In her 1991 book, The Popcorn Report, she describes cocooning as: “the impulse to go inside when it just gets too tough and scary outside. Cocooning is about insulation and avoidance, peace and protection, coziness and control – a sort of hyper-nesting.”

In 2021, the pandemic has provided additional impetus for this trend.

“Covid-19 has made us all more aware of the importance of living in spaces that makes us feel nurtured,” says Private Property Brand & Marketing Executive, Tracey Lee Miller. “At any time, your home needs to be a place where you can gain energy and recharge rather than leaving you drained and exhausted.”

Here are 4 simple ways in which you can create a sense of calm

1.Clear the decks

There is no question that excessive clutter produces feelings of distress, even in people who believe that they are immune to untidiness. Piles of disorganised belongings often result in unnecessary stress,such as searching for missing car and house keys when you are in a hurry.

The first step in creating a nurturing environment, then, is to make time to clear out those messy cupboards or piles of paper and throw out any unneeded items. Donating useful items to charities that can use them will give you a feeling of satisfaction – and will also clear space for items of importance.

2.Take stock

The next step is to take a critical look at your home and decide where to make changes. Examine each room separately, keeping in mind the overall ambience you are trying to create.

Some useful changes could include:

• Adding cupboard doors to open kitchen or dressing room shelves to hide untidy contents.

• Finding innovative ways to store all the bits and pieces that creates clutter in bathrooms, kitchens, and bedrooms.

3.Colour it calm

A fresh coat of paint can transform an ordinary room into a welcoming sanctuary.

• White walls are certainly calm but may create a clinical atmosphere unless alleviated by colourful accessories.

• Soothing colours like blue and green can produce a tranquil effect, particularly in bedrooms. But be careful to avoid a sombre mood, by adding a few bright accessories, such as yellow or orange cushions, curtains, and throws.

4.Natural light

Natural lighting in a room improves the atmosphere and creates an overall mood of tranquillity.

• If windows are on the small side, you can increase the amount of natural light by introducing large mirrors in strategic spots to reflect available sunlight.

• Sheer curtains and blinds are neat and allow in more light than heavy window coverings.

“If well implemented, the steps outlined above will go a long way towards creating a sense of calm at home – both improving mood and increasing productivity,” concludes Miller.

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