BY SIDDHI JAIN
The novel coronavirus forced most people into home-sheltering and with this, homes doubled up as offices, gyms, places of worship, centres of education, and sanctuaries of safety and comfort. With homes in the spotlight during the pandemic, their design and decor trends have been influenced by changing needs. According to Sidhartha Talwar, Design Principal and co-founder of Studio Lotus, a New Delhi-based multi-disciplinary design practice, COVID-19 has demonstrated how the design of our dwellings governs the experience of living.
“As we shelter ourselves under unfavourable circumstances, the need to reexamine residential design has taken on a sense of urgency. The pandemic has highlighted the impact of creating seamless inside-outside experiences. During these times especially, balconies, terraces and verandahs have come to serve a vital role in establishing our sense of connection to the world at large, enhancing our state of health and mental wellbeing by maximizing daylight, fresh air intake, and regulating overall air circulation effectively.
“The pandemic has also called into question fundamental aspects of flexibility and space planning with remote working necessitating the inclusion of a study or home office within the spatial programme. We can expect to see its integration in a much more pronounced manner in the near future,” Talwar told IANSlife over email. After the virus is contained, one can expect families opting for large living spaces that are naturally ventilated and allow for maximum daylight ingress.
Homes need to be as robust as possible; hence materials that have a longer life-span, and are easy to maintain such as glass, stainless steel, copper and other anti-microbial substances as opposed to rough tactile surfaces, will witness a surge in demand, says Akshat Bhatt, Principal Architect, Architecture Discipline when asked about possible changes in residential design.
At the same time, a financial slump will make us thrive on limited budgets and more sustainable and maintenance-free finishes. “Ultra -luxurious interiors will give way to more practical and safer elements in design. I personally would prefer more voice automated/contactless technology for entryways, kitchens etc. Having been locked in for over a month, in fear and anxiety with no outdoor activities, our homes will now have to be re-planned and adapted for more relaxing and casual activities.
“Yoga room, gym, spa, home theatre, playrooms – these activity oriented areas should take priority over formal ones. Using calm and relaxing color tones throughout the house would be a must. Since work-from-home is the new norm, we need to allocate home office spaces and create our own work dens,” Manisha Hakim, Associate and Head, Interiors, Urbanscape Architects told IANSlife. Trends in home designing after this unprecedented phase would increase focus on health and hygiene too.
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Pooja Ashley and Arbaysis Ashley, Co-Founders, Ashleys explain: Home automation shall become the new normal; wherein design is most likely to emphasize on air quality. Research that is driven by exploration of antimicrobial surfaces, materials such as copper and brass that seem to resist contamination, and self-cleansing systems, all would drive design guidelines of residential spaces.
“For smaller homes, minimal accessories that project cleaner lines shall be used for styling. Flexible wall systems have already replaced fixed, solid walls because of their functionality and maintenance in compact layouts. Soothing and muted colour palettes are also going to be the trend in rejuvenating and nurturing homes for better living and working. (IANS)