10 Nature Inspired Interior Design Ideas

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Your home is your sanctuary and what better way to spruce up your living space than by taking some inspiration from Mother Nature? Today's post is a complete round-up of our favourite nature inspired interior design ideas, to help you transform your home into a tranquil paradise!

1. No More Fake Florals!

I’m sure you can remember back in the day when artificial flowers were all the rage.  Perhaps your grandparents’ house still has a bouquet or two sitting in the living room covered with a thin layer of dust.  Fortunately, today it’s easier than ever to bring some real plants into your home.

Consider making your very own miniature ecosystem out of old glass jars or purchasing some ready to plant hanging glass terrariums and seeding them with air plants (Tallandsias) or succulents.  Air plants or Tallandsias are easy to grow and require no soil.  They take the moisture from the surrounding air and require just an occasional spritz of water.  Even better, if you keep them in a moisture rich room such as a bathroom, they require no watering at all, making them essentially impossible to kill (yes, just like Chuck Norris).

Terrarium

Image by: Sandy Polson

Succulents are another plant variety that are easy to grow and require minimal maintenance.  Plus, if your friends have succulents already, you can ‘procure’ a small cutting, dip it in some soil or water, and watch it flourish into a succulent of your own!

2. Mossy Moss Moss!

What better way to bring yourself closer to nature, than an actual moss bathroom mat?  Yes, that’s right – you can create a 100% natural bathmat made from real moss that uses the water droplets from your wet feet to water itself!  Crazy huh?

There are many resources out there that teach you how to make your own moss bathmat from foam and glue. Try this one for a fun weekend project!

3. Your Own Bathroom Oasis

The bathroom is the perfect place to incorporate more elements from nature - water and lush plants go hand in hand.  Exotic tropical plants will love the warm moisture rich bathroom environment, so long as they have plenty of natural light too.

Bathroom plantsImage by: Gardenvision2011

If you have access to a private outdoor area near your bedroom, you could also consider installing an outdoor shower.  Outdoor showers are refreshing in summer months and nothing brings you closer to nature than the open sky and the warmth of the sun on your back as you take a revitalising shower!

4. Water Features

Water features or interior fountains are often overlooked when designing living spaces.  The sound of flowing  or trickling water has many therapeutic properties that can be calming and relaxing .  The soft soothing sound of running water can drown out the unpleasant noise of traffic, people talking on phones or the clicking of keyboards.

Water featureImage credit: Bart Teeuwisse

Additionally, an indoor fountain can improve the quality of air in your home by serving as a natural humidifier.  Water features come in many different varieties; you can get a small water feature for your desk or install a full ceiling height waterfall in your home. There is something suitable for every budget!

5. Subtle Textures

Nature-inspired design doesn’t always have to involve plants or greenery in your home. For a more subtle look, search for furniture items that contain interesting textures such as burlap and straw.  Thin burlap or rough linen can make elegant drapes on a clean palette of white.  Woven straw lamp shades and rope spun chairs can all bring elements of nature into your home without making the space look too “jungle-y.”

Nature fibres such as linen and cotton make great upholstery fabrics and can be purchased as removable and washable sofa covers. So practical and natural.

Loose Cover Sofa

Positano Loose Cover Sofa from SofaSofa

6. Antlers

The next suggestion may not be for everyone, but how about including some statement antlers in your living space?  Antlers come in all shapes and sizes both real and imitation, so if you aren’t keen on the real thing, consider a plastic or metal alternative.

Loose single antlers can be placed on coffee tables or dining room tables as rustically elegant centrepieces. Search vintage and flea markets for antlers as well as Etsy for painted modern versions.

AntlersImage credit: Tim K

7. Exposed Brick Wall

Although not strictly inspired by nature per se, an exposed brick wall can work brilliantly as an accent wall, adding a strong aesthetic focal point for the room. The raw industrial look of a rustic exposed brick wall can be a great contrast to indoor plants and lush greenery, creating a stylish tonal backdrop.

exposed brick wallImage by: Karly Hand

8. Woody Faux Bois

French for “fake wood,” this classic French fabric design draws inspiration from natural wood grain motifs. These playful patterns can be found in fabrics, furniture, wallpaper and paint. You can select bold faux bois patterns for smaller pieces such as accent pillows or lampshades, or subtler faux bois for wallpaper and paint.

9. Leafy Centrepieces

Having a dinner party or looking for interesting nature inspired centrepieces?  Look no further than your own garden or local park!  Collect a few large leaves, use a little water to wet them first and then use the leaves to line the inside of a large glass vase.  The leaves will stick to the sides of the glass vase by themselves and creating a lovely forest-inspired centrepiece.

10. Found Beauty

Bring some nature indoors by using found objects such as drift wood or sea shells for a Cape Cod or nautical themed feel. Place smaller items in a clear tall vase to make a statement piece, or display larger single items independently.

Found itemsImage by: Claire Prenton

Found objects can also include larger items such as a weather-worn door or antique wrought iron pieces.  Use these larger items as headboards or focal-point pieces in your living space.  For an updated modern look, you can dip found objects in brightly coloured pastel paints, to create whimsical ornamental pieces.

Door headboardImage by: Violeta Clemente

We hope you found this list of nature inspired ideas useful for your home.  If you have some nature-inspired home décor ideas of your own, please share them with us on Twitter!

Posted in Interior Design on 17th Oct 2014

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