• Lorena Couto

Designing your home for isolation

Updated: Jan 11

If you are the kind of person who only feels comfortable around nature this post is for you. While all the other kids were freaking out watching the plants take over the house in Jumanji, I felt like moving in.

Needless to say I also love being barefoot and outdoors and in times when we all need to isolate in our homes, I want to share some ideas of how can we feel great indoors. I am going to show you a few tricks we use when we are designing a home from the scratch or doing a renovation on an existing property.

It doesn't matter which style of architecture you love, a house full of plants is great to relax in.


Rather you are building the house from ground zero or renovating, we first look into how the family will use the spaces. The right layout is the key for functionality, but to bring quality to the game, we need to look into air circulation and natural light. If you think about it, those are the aspects that makes us comfortable with the outdoors, so the first thing we want to do is to create an integration between indoor and outdoor.

Usually my favourite trick is using the same flooring. Concrete, clay tiles, stones, bricks, any material safe if wet and with a natural feel under your feet will do. We trick our eyes into thinking IN and OUT is actually just ONE big space.

To feel that fresh breeze coming in, use big doors that can open completely. The use of glass is great to trick the eyes too because it minimises the vertical barrier when you look to the exterior.

The image above is a great example for the ones who live in Victorian townhouses, the most traditional type of construction around Sydney. They often only have windows in the front and at the back of the property, so the best thing to maximize your space and feel home, is to welcome the back yard by integrating it with the whole design. Another cool tip if you own a property like that is to welcome more natural light with a skylight.

If you live in a bigger house and you can afford to bring your walls further inside and create a transitional space in between your enclosed room and your garden, that's the best option. You will have the impression of no walls at all and living in nature will become part of your city life. Make sure you bring elements like plants and stones into your transitional space. If you have the chance to add some water into your mini-oasis, even better.

All images via Pinterest

So let's do a quick recap on how to create quality spaces:

- Integrate indoor and outdoor

- use natural elements: air, light, plants and stones and when possible, water

- alter the space horizontally by using the same finishes in and out

- alter the space vertically by using glass and doors with big openings

- Skylights are a good solution for extra natural light

I hope you liked the article. On my next post, I will tell you how we can feel great indoors if we live in a rental and there's no possibility of big renovations.

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