This biophilic autumn style edit will help you to bring in a little bit of nature and seasonal colour to your home.
Nature is constantly evolving and changing. The Seasonal cycles indicate change and a feeling of time moving forwards as we navigate through them. Ideally, it’s important to spend as much time outside as possible to take in those seasonal changes around us, but we should also try to highlight some of those changes inside our homes and workspaces to make us feel connected to nature – we change our wardrobes with the seasons, so why not our interiors too.
To fully embrace nature, our interiors should change seasonally, incorporating the colors, foods, smells, and textures associated with that time of year. I realise that initially, this may sound a little extreme but before you panic thinking that I’m advising you to redecorate your homes four times a year, I’m really not. I appreciate that not everyone has the storage to squirrel away the woolen rugs and sheepskin throws all summer while switching them up for cool cottons and linens. You can just swap out one or two items, but even simpler than that you can use seasonal fruit and vegetables to style up your kitchen or change the scent of your candles.
Seasonal flowers are a brilliant way of bringing in the seasons and injecting some colour into your interiors without having to splash out on new cushions, and even better than that they can be completely free! I do love a bit of seasonal foraging, there really is no better way to bring a bit of autumn to the table than adding a vase filled with some dried foliage in the seasons rustic burned oranges and reds.
Dried flowers are a really cost effective way to bring seasonal flowers into your home; not only because you can pick them up for free on a blustery autumn walk, but also because fresh flowers and plants don’t tend to cope too well in the dry artificial heat of the central heating.
You’ll find an abundance of dried poppy heads, cow parsley, berries and foliage in the forests and parks at this time of year. If you have any ‘feather top’ otherwise known as ‘bunny ears’ in the garden, cut them now and make use of them in an arrangement in your home. They will dry wonderfully and last a really long time. Gypsophila is super cheap to buy too, you can find small bunches in most supermarkets and it’s really easy to dry, just pop it in a vase with no water and forget about it.
Vintage glass frames are another effective way of bringing seasonal nature into your home. Just switch out the flowers as the seasons change, you could use whatever you can find, dried acer leaves are an incredibly vivid, burned red colour at this time of year and would work brilliantly.
If you live in a built up area or you simply don’t have the time to pick your own dried flowers, Shida Preserved Flowers have the most stunning selection of Hand-tied bouquets, ready for you to place in your favourite vase, and, they’re letterbox-friendly so they can be delivered to your door, ready for you to arrange at home. I think they make the most thoughtful gift as they will continue to bring you joy for up to a year afterwards and cost the same as fresh flowers.
I have included this ‘Gaia’ bunch in my autumn style edit in the hope that my other half will get the hint. Just look at those warm autumnal hues.
Bringing in elements of the autumn season to your home doesn’t need to cost you the earth, in fact we can bring in seasonal colour and texture though the foods that we eat. A bowl of pomegranates or persimmon make a great rustic centerpiece for the table, they bring in the warmer hues of the season and the best bit is, you can eat them afterwards.
Do not disregard the faithful onion either, piled high in a large wooden bowl, they can look really stylish out on the side in your kitchen and you’re always going to need onions in all of the hearty autumnal stews that you’re going to rustle up, so it’s a win win.
Pumpkins have become so associated with halloween that they often get overlooked don’t they, but there are so many different types to choose from these days, in all shapes and colours. I think they look so striking when styled in the kitchen or in the centre of the table…I have to be honest, I prefer mine eu naturel but there are lots of people getting creative with their pumpkins and painting them, stecilling them and using spray paint. It’s a lot of fun for kids to get involved with and a great way to help them explore and get creative with the food that they eat.
Make sure that they don’t see the edible part of the pumpkins and squashes get wasted though. The seeds are delicious dry roasted and sprinkled on the top of a pumpkin or butternut soup – just add dried chilli flakes and a dash of creme fraiche. Yum.
It’s such a wonderful thing to get young children out in nature, learning, collecting and exploring. Like most kids, our four year old son is obsessed with collecting sticks, acorns and conkers at this time of year, so we headed out for a dog walk where the wild apple and pear trees grow. We collected some sticks and some apples – aim for the high ones so that you know no dogs have peed on them. We then headed back to make toffee apples and we even had some spare for an apple crumble.
Evidence that experiences of nature can benefit people has accumulated rapidly in recent years. Yet, perhaps because of the domination of the visual sense in humans, we have neglected the other senses a little. Humans are multisensory beings, and it seems likely that many of those connections to nature are delivered through the non-visual senses too.
One of the most effective ways to access memories and emotions is through familiar smells, luckily it is also one of the easiest and most cost effective changes that we can make in our homes to bring in the seasonal changes in nature.
There are plenty of scented candles, room sprays and diffusers on the market that are made using organic ingredients and essential oils, that will not only trigger fond associations of being within nature but can also stimulate or calm you. Some can even help to reduce headaches and respiratory issues.
Changing your scented candles and room sprays seasonally can be a really effective way to subtly bring in those seasonal changes and trigger comforting memories of being in the great outdoors.
Cera London have brought out a range of handmade candles using recycled Prosecco bottles, with seasonal Limited Edition fragrances released throughout the year – my favorites at the moment are ‘Number 4, Oudh & Smoke’ which is a rich and powerful woody scent, conjuring up memories of sipping whisky around the campfire and ‘Number 9, Plum, Cassis & Amber’, the uplifting sweet scent of ripening plums on a sunny autumn day.
After you’ve finished with the candle the recycled glass containers are the perfect size to grow seedlings or use as small vases for cut flowers.
It wouldn’t be an autumn style edit without a few cosy blankets and comforting textures thrown into the mix now would it?
Bringing in some seasonal colour and texture through your soft furnishings is such an effective way to keep things looking fresh and to stop your interiors from feeling stagnant and boring.
Woolen blankets and sheepskin throws will instantly make a space feel more autumnal and inviting but it doesn’t need to stop there. Wood is such a tactile material and incorporating it into your kitchenware and table decor is not only much warmer to the touch than ceramics, but studies have also shown that we find the natural grain in wood calming to look at and touch.
I’ve added some stunning wooden plates and bowls from Nordic Nest to the autumn style edit for this reason. I’ve always found eating a warming porridge with a wooden spoon so comforting and I’ve been lusting after some wooden dinnerware for some time now too.
This collection from Nordic Nest is on offer at the moment so fill up your open shelves while stocks last and give your eyeballs a shot of rustic heaven.
Biophilia tells us that space with a good visual connection to nature feels whole, it grabs our attention and can be stimulating or calming. It can convey a sense of time, weather and other living things. It’s the reason why hotels can charge a premium for a room with a view. In hospital design, a view to nature is believed to improve perceptions in levels of pain and even speed up recovery time.
Most of us live in towns and cities though, and even those that live in the countryside will more often than not have a view out of the front of their house to a busy road or another row of houses. So what do we do in those rooms that are not blessed with a view out onto a garden or green space?
A picture of nature has also been shown to have the same impact as a real life view when used in recovery rooms. Wall hangings and murals of landscapes can work really well too. I’ve been updating the image clipped to the wall at our desk space over the last year and I’ve found it really helps to give me that visual respite from screen time and something to wistfully gaze into when I’m looking for inspiration.
This ‘Fine Little Day Norrland Poster’ from Alice in Scandiland is on my list for the next seasonal desk update and has therefore made the ‘please will you buy me this for my birthday list’ *coughs* I mean ‘autumn style edit’.
So here it is, my autumn style edit for 2020.
1. Large rattan storage basket £24.99 – H&M HOME / 2. Dark ceramic candlesticks £19.99 – Zara Home / 3. Tobacco Round Linen Cushion £32.00 – Grey September / 4. Fine Little Day Norrland Poster £35.00 – Alice in Scandiland / 5. Jelena Hand-Woven Jute Rug £ 120.00 – La Redoute / 6. Standard English Beeswax Candles £6.75 – Alice in Scandiland / 7. Ceramic cup £4.99 – H&M HOME / 8. Fringed Blanket £69.99 – Zara Home / 9. Clay brown linen table cloth £16.00 – Habitat / 10. Muubs Bowls and Plates, from £11.99 – Nordic Nest / 11. Recycled glass vase £17.99 – Zara Home / 12. Gaia Boquet £36.00 – Shida Preserved Flowers
Of course no autumn style edit would be complete without a handleless mug to warm your mitts on…
I hope you enjoyed this biophilic seasonal blog post. See you in the not too distant future for a bit of Christmas magic.