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Houseplant trend continues with IKEA display at Chelsea

The houseplant trend continues as the RHS Chelsea Flower Show hosted IKEA’s home office display at this year’s show. The stand in the Discovery area of the Pavillion was a collaboration between IKEA and Indoor Garden Design.

Chelsea flower show houseplants ikea display

Houseplants galore at IKEA’s home office display at this year Chelsea flower show. Photograph: IKEA

The display is entitled “Plant Works” is set in an open-plan home office that includes a desk and meeting area. The objective is to show how we can create healthier and greener environments for our workspaces and not just our homes.

Naturally, the design is scandi-fantastic with clean lines, crisp whites and cool greys all allowing ‘green’ to dominate. The room is open and informal that creates a relaxed and creative atmosphere. Every conceivable space is used for planting: the desktops and surfaces display a collection of small potted ficus and Sansevieria. There are floor-standing plants of differing sizes including palms, ferns and cacti. The wall-mounted floating shelves house variegated-leaved alocasia and neat rows of phalaenopsis orchids and Bromeliaceae. One of IKEA’s peg-board style storage solutions has miniature plants stuffed into little pockets and pots. Plants are hanging from the ceiling and they are even under the wire-framed side tables.

Houseplant trend continues with orchids

Houseplant trend continues with this orchid arrangement in moss. Photograph: IKEA

Small succulent houseplant in white ceramic pot

No space is too small, no plant is too small. Photograph: IKEA

This is the second collaboration at Chelsea for IKEA and Indoor Garden Design. In 2017, their display was called ‘At home with plants’ and showcased how to use plants in bedrooms, living rooms and in bathrooms. The display featured many houseplants still riding high on this ‘outdoors indoors’ trend such as the monstera deliciosa and beautiful peace lily or Spathiphyllum.  This year’s ‘Plant Works’ continues what IKEA and Indoor Garden Design started in 2017.

Plants for living not just living rooms

Plant Works isn’t only about plants. It also contained information on the science behind how plants help boost our productivity and well-being. The scheme is really a champion of biophilic design and how it’s application creates a healthy and happy space for humans to exist in.

As the millennial generation becomes the dominant demographic in the workforce, so too do we see an increase in their work-environment preferences. Open, collaborative spaces, communal areas and desks and workstations that baulk tradition. But we are also seeing an increase in freelancers and the self-employed who’s homes are also their workplaces. 

So the lines between work and living are blurred – or should that read ‘softened’ by some well-placed foliage?

Get the look

As the houseplant trend continues so does Floresy’s offerings of high-quality artificial house plants. Faux plants are a great option for office areas as their greenery adds productivity and creativity whilst their super-low-maintenance keeps your overheads down too. So consider choosing artificial office plants for your workstation as well.

artificial plant bonsai ficus

Miniature high-quality ficus bonsai by Floresy

artificial plant floor-standing cycas palm

Artificial Cycas Palm Plant 100 cm by Floresy

sansevieria green small zoom

Bespoke green sansevieria in a grey planter by Floresy

 

artificial death valley cactus

Artificial death valley cactus succulent by Floresy

 

 

white orchid arrangement

Artificial orchids by Floresy

The above modern orchid arrangement will add peace and class to your setting. Perfect for a reception desk or other client-facing areas.

These succulents arranged in moss in white pots are perfect for a desktop, restaurant table or even the corporate bathrooms.

Mixed artificial succulents in moss by Floresy

Mixed artificial succulents in moss by Floresy

For more information on our extensive range of products for both indoors and outdoors, please visit our shop.

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4 (and a half) Plants with Big Leaves

As we increasingly bring nature into our interiors, foliage is set to be an ongoing trend. So plants with big leaves are popular as they add a big dollop of green in one dose. Plants with big leaves can be clustered with other plants for a tropical or sumptuous feel. However, they can also stand alone and still have an impact. Big leaves are often unfussy and simple therefore give the plant a clean and uncluttered look. This means they suit many modern interiors especially those tending towards minimalism.

There are many choices of indoor plants with big leaves, ranging from trees to the humble houseplant. Here is our guide to some popular options for your interiors.

1. Plants with Big Leaves – Ficus

Fig trees or Ficus come in a wide variety of leaf and trunk variations. They are relatively easy to care for which makes them a popular indoor tree (although they are also known for losing their leaves). The beauty of using a tree over a bushier plant is the floor space remains more open and keeps the room feeling less cluttered.

Big Leaf Ficus in hallway

A pair of big-leaved Ficus in the hallway. Design by Sarah Baynes.

A popular choice from Floresy is this big-leaved ficus with green/white variegated leaves.

Premium Big White-Green Leaves Ficus

Premium Big White-Green Leaves Ficus

2. Anthurium

At first glance, the wet-looking, flesh-red of the anthurium flower suggests this plant could be a carnivore. It isn’t. It’s just a very distinctive houseplant with super-shiny leaves and a long-lasting ‘flowers’. The red part is actually a modified leaf or ‘bract’. It’s the yellow/white spike that contains spirals of tiny, densely-packed flowers.

Anthuriums are native to the Americas and so they have a vibrant, tropical feel. They are a great choice if you want plants with big leaves on a smaller surface such as desk or shelf. They come in a variety of colours ranging from white through a variety of pinks. But the most common is the blood red.

Anthurium with it's distinctive red flowers.

Anthurium with it’s distinctive red flowers.

Whilst the natural form of Anthuriums have fantastic air-purifying abilities, they are also poisonous. To avoid this toxic issue, you could consider an artificial anthurium such as this one from Floresy.

Red Anthurium in Pot

Anthurium by Floresy has large, tactile waxy leaves.

3. Alocasia Calidora

Nothing says “Hello, I’m a plant with big leaves” like an Alocasia. One of the bigger-leafed varieties is nickname ‘elephant ears’ for obvious reasons. These impressive plants need a bright position to thrive indoors so are best suited to sunny rooms and conservatories. Rooms with skylights are also suitable due to the increased light available.

Alocasia plants with big leaves interiors

Something witty or observational about Alocasia Calidora

Alocasia varieties include those with variegated leaves such as this artificial option from Floresy: 

alocasia plants with big leaves foliage display

Big, but not that big…

Alocasias are a fantastic choice for any interior. Available in a range of sizes, they are effectively design-neutral and so will fit into any decor. This classic, mid-green, wide-leafed artificial Alocasia by Floresy will bring fresh foliage to any room.

alocasia calidora plants with big leaves indoor foliage artificial plants

Artificial Alocasia Calidora in various sizes

4. Peace lily

The peace lily or spathiphyllum is an elegant and attractive plant that is a perfect choice for a desk or sunny windowsill. Being a smaller plant than some of the others on this list, it’s leaves aren’t as big. But their shape and texture are certainly evocative of the Alocasia. Like the Anthurium, they have a modified leaf that enhances the size of the delicate white flowers.

Peace Lily Indoor Plants with big leaves

Sergeant Angel’s favourite plant

artificial Spathiphyllum peace lily for interiors

Artificial peace lily by Floresy. Small, but with leaves that punch above their weight.

4.5. Rubber Tree Plant

Here’s the half:

The rubber tree is a really only a variety of the Ficus that features above. The clue is in its Latin name: Ficus Elastica. It is known for it’s large, dark green leaves and is a design icon of 1970’s interiors. Despite its groovy heritage, it has actually featured in our interiors since the Victorian era.

Rubber Tree Plants with big leaves

The rubber tree is at home in 1970’s interiors as it is any contemporary setting.

The rubber tree plant looks great in the sunny rooms with rattan furniture, as shown above in this image from Guiade Jardineria. Equally, this big-leaf plant will suit a dark and moody Victorian gentleman’s study (so great if you’re into Steampunk). If your setting does suffer from low natural light-levels, however, an artificial rubber tree from Floresy is a good solution.

Artificial rubber tree plant with big leaves by Floresy.

Artificial rubber tree plant with big leaves by Floresy.

Floresy stock a wide range of plants with big leaves plus some plants with more delicate leaves too. Visit our shop to view our extensive range.

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6 Hotel room design mistakes to avoid

A hotel room has to work hard. It has to offer good looks, comfort, practicality and a home-from-home for your guests. Whilst at the same time be cost-effective to maintain in order to earn its keep. But when it comes to striking a balance between form and function, there are common design mistakes that any hotel room can fall foul of.

1. Bad lighting

Few of us still sleep with the lights on but bad lighting can seriously cast a shadow on your guest experience. Rooms benefit from multiple light sources that allow guests to change the overall brightness to meet their own preferences. And controlling the lighting needs to be at your guest’s convenience too. Make sure the bedside lamps aren’t too bright and that the controls can be easily reached from the bed. And completely ditch any fluorescent lights – they were ever not a design mistake?

Hotel room with only one bedside table and light

Only one bedside table and light – but what about the guest sleeping on the left?

2. Bold colours that are not restful

It’s great to be able to make a design statement in a room, especially using colours that are on trend. But overuse of bright, powerful colours will not help your guests get a restful night’s sleep. If your chosen theme colour is bright or bold, use it sparingly. Consider using it in throw cushions, lampshade and in wall art. Also, you could choose a patterned curtain fabric that includes the colour in smaller amounts.

Red hotel bedroom accent

Ham Yard Hotel in London uses a very stimulating red but as an accent colour.

3. Oversized furniture or too much furniture

We’ve all been there. Bought that amazing super-king bed that we saw in the store and now you can’t open your wardrobe doors. Even generously sized rooms will feel cramped if they are full of furniture. Floor space is key. For smaller bedrooms, consider a smaller double bed. Alternatively, make each item of furniture earn its keep by having more than one function. For example, a bedside that is also a desk or a dressing table that is also a TV stand. If something can be wall-mounted do so, it frees up the floor giving a greater sense of space.

Clear surfaces and floor area creates space

So many great space-saving ideas such as the long wall shelf keep floor space and surface’s clear. Image from domino.com

4. Lack of technology

You’ve installed free wifi throughout your hotel and you’re patting yourself on the back. If technology was a guest room – you’ve just added the bed. Today’s travellers – especially millennials – expect more than access to wifi which is now considered a necessity. A common hotel room design mistake is insufficient charging sockets as multiple devices may need to be plugged-in simultaneously. With the number of connectable devices growing from two billion in 2006 to a predicted 200 billion by 2020, hotels cannot afford to not invest in greater room technology. Hotel apps that allow personalisation of temperature, lighting and interaction with other hotel’s facilities are fast becoming must-have hotel tech. The Marriott City Centre hotel knows how to do it.

Hotel room design mistakes with technology don't happen at Marriott

Marriott City Centre hotel in Charlotte, USA is an industry-leader for hotel tech. Rooms include Bluetooth connectivity for TV plus room key apps.

5. Clutter

When a guest comes to stay with you, they need to feel welcomed and accommodated. Part of that comes from having somewhere to put their belongings. Clear surfaces are more inviting and tell the guest that room is theirs to use. It might only be a phone and a toothbrush. But if the room is full of brochures, tea & coffee making facilities, lamps and potted plants, the result is a feeling of being unwanted. And that’s a big design mistake.

Radisson Blu Hotel Room

No design mistakes at the Radisson Blu in Schipol: subdued colour scheme with a bold accent, multiple light sources and all those clear surfaces… Design & images property of Creneau International

6. Looks over comfort

Achieving the wow-factor with hotel room design is what we want. It creates a memorable stay for your guests and really enhances their customer experience. However, if that fabulous-looking armchair is so low to the ground that it’s uncomfortable to sit on, what is it for? The fifteen throw cushions on the bed look sumptuous and inviting. But how practical is it for your guests to have to shove them off the bed to lie down. Not to mention the laundry bill! The panel curtains are in an exquisite print but don’t completely cover the window. The wow-factor will lose its value if the bedroom simply does not perform to the same expectation as the looks suggest. These are over-design mistakes. A trend rising alongside the millennial market is for simpler room design. Comfort without fuss.

Simple hotel room design

At the end of the day, it’s all about the bed.

Let Floresy contribute to your good hotel room design with our floral design service.

Biophilic Design – what is it?

Biophilic design is a concept that strives to incorporate nature into our homes, workplaces and community spaces. It embraces the connection between humans and nature by creating a harmonious space that is fulfilling yet still functional and efficient.

The awareness of biophilic design in the workplace is increasing. It comes as we acknowledge how prevalent mental health disorders and cardiovascular disease are in our western societies. The World Health Organisation predicts that these stress-related conditions will be the two biggest health problems by 2020.

The traditional designs of offices and other workplaces focus more on how cost-effective the floor space can be instead of how well people can exist in the space. Furthermore, the increase in technology-dependence and ‘screen-time’ and we lose our connection with nature for significant proportions of our lives.

Biophilic design puts the human experience and well-being at the centre of any design. It is based on the observed concept of biophilia.

What is biophilia?

Biophilia was first noted by psychoanalyst Erich Fromm in his 1973 book The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness. He described it as “the passionate love of life and of all that is alive”. The term was then popularised in the 1980s by the psychologist, Edward O Wilson, in his book, Biophilia (1984). Wilson proposed that humans innate desire to connect with nature is, in part, genetic. He observed how we were becoming disconnected from the natural world because of increases in urbanisation.

Examples of Biophilic Design

Perhaps the most famous examples of biophilic design are the creative playgrounds that global corporations like Google call ‘offices’. However, biophilic design is not limited to billion-dollar industries. Proponents of biophilic design include designers such as Oliver Heath who’s projects have included a garden school in Hackney, London.

biophilic design in an office

Google’s office in Dublin shows examples of biophilic design in the workplace.

biophilc design healthcare hospital

Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne has a large-scale aquarium in its atrium. Photograph: John Gollings

What is the WELL Building Standard?

The International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) is a leader in the global wellness movement that focuses on the ‘design, operations and behaviours’ of buildings. The standard is a holistic approach to well-being and is based on seven core concepts:

  • Air – promote clean air and reduce in sources of indoor air pollution
  • Water – provide safe and clean water for various uses
  • Nourishment – encourage better eating habits and food culture
  • Light – protect the body’s circadian system and support good sleep quality
  • Fitness – integrate physical activity into everyday life and reduce sedentary behaviours
  • Comfort – distraction-free, productive and comfortable indoor environments
  • Mind – optimise cognitive and emotional health through design and technology

Any building can apply for the WELL certification. It is a fantastic tool, especially when used to improve the well-being of the building’s occupants.

What is Sick Building Syndrome (SBS)?

Sick building syndrome is a recognised medical condition relating to poor air quality in workplaces such as offices. The symptoms include headaches, dizziness and nausea as well as irration to the eyes, nose and throat. The majority of cases are considered to be linked to flaws in a building’s air conditioning, heating and ventilation. Contamination including microbial and chemical are also factors.

Because of these factors, addressing the main causes of SBS is likely to involve a serious overall of a building’s infrastructure. However, opening windows and giving the building a good clean are the first steps in addressing problems. The introduction of plants into the building will also help with poor air quality.

What can biophilic design do for you?

There are many studies that show that biophilic design can have a positive impact. Commercial, civic and residential buildings in addition to public spaces can benefit:

  • Biophilic workplaces show increases in worker well-being of up to 13% and in productivity of up to 8%.
  • Healthcare spaces see post-operative recovery rates reduce by 8.5% and a 22% reduction in the need for pain medication.
  • Customers are willing to pay up to 12% more for goods or services when a retail unit is situated in an area with vegetation and landscaping.
  • Urban spaces with greater access to nature have less crime by around 8%.
  • Guests staying in hotel rooms with views of nature including greenery or water are willing to pay 23% more than for rooms that don’t.
  • Concentration levels, rates of attendance and test results all increase in educational spaces with biophilic elements. The negative impacts of ADHD decrease.

In a 100% organic nutshell, biophilic design can have a positive impact in so many areas of our lives. Studies have shown that the simple act of adding plants to an office can have a positive measurable effect. The mental well-being of workers improves through reductions in stress, depression and anxiety.

Floresy design services are here to help you provide the right biophilic solution for your building. The addition of the colour green will create more relaxing and calm spaces for your workers.  Plants and greenery will help improve the customer experience for your guests and clients. Contact us here so we can get started today.

Aneto Case Study: Collaboration with Ink Inch

It is always a pleasure to work with Ink Inch Design Studios. Our latest collaboration with Ink Inch was on refurbishing new premises for cafe venture, Aneto.

Aneto is a cafe, restaurant, and bar located in East Dulwich, London. Its Italian-inspired, health-conscious menu includes a good variety of vegetarian and vegan dishes as well as organic wines and beers. They serve “Breakfast & Brunch, Coffee & Cocktails, Dinner & Drinks”. The premises on the East Dulwich Road was in need of a complete renovation before Aneto could open. A total overhaul of the 150 square meters old pub was required to turn it into a fresh and inviting cafe. The project began in November 2017 and completed in February 2018.

A Kitchen Garden

From the beginning, Ink Inch and Aneto owner, Damiano, knew ‘green’ was going to be an important theme. “We wanted to give a garden vibe to the place, with a lot of green almost everywhere,” says Francesca, designer at Ink Inch. “We already knew the quality of the Floresy plants so we thought that would be a good fit for us.”

Floresy was brought on board as both supplier and plant consultant.

The result is a balmy outdoor feel. The fresh greens in a bright space set against the natural brick walls. Just like being in a sunny kitchen courtyard garden.

The wall panels have been painted white with individual planks of blue in an effective but budget-friendly scheme. The blues repeat in the furniture, most of which has been repainted and restored.

Small plants, simple shelving and bare brick walls.

Fresh Blues

White and tones of blue keep the decor fresh and bright. The painted-white wall panelling has highlights of individual planks in varying shades of blue. This is an effective but budget-friendly scheme. The blues repeat in the repainted and restored furniture. The natural wood elements and punches of green give a grounded and natural vibe to the design. Simple and wholesome. The floor space is maximised by keeping the area uncluttered. The decoration is minimal, capitalising on the wall space to add interest and personality.

Blue highlights on bar area of a cafe

Highlights individual planks with differing shades of blue

Eatery Greenery

The bespoke wooden shelving that surrounds the kitchen doors creates a valuable space. The jars filled with ingredients plus Floresy herbs, grasses, and succulents in small pots suggest the cafe’s identity almost as much as the menu. The result is a larder like display that introduces the kitchen area. Fresh and honest ingredients therefore healthy and authentic food. In addition, the variety of plants and of their containers adds texture. It is informal and functional as well as being decorative.

Bespoke wooden shelving door surround kitchen larder

Shelving unit gives identity. This is an eatery with fresh and quality produce.

Ingredients succulents herbs in jars and pots on wooden shelf in cafe

Ingredients and Floresy plants in simple pots. This is an honest and authentic restaurant.

The recessed shelf along the back wall adds height to the room. The up-lit plants invite you deeper into the cafe, past the bar and into the main seating area. Especially as the numerous grasses in small pots are sitting against the brick wall. Are they playing with the perspective and depth of the room?

Commercial coffee shop design artificial plants, collaboration with Ink Inch Design on Aneto Deli

Recessed and uplight shelf unit along the back wall contains Floresy’s

Ready for business

In conclusion, Aneto is a vibrant and inviting space. Its ambience is that of a bustling kitchen and steaming coffee machines. How easy it is to imagine the buzz of family and friends enjoying each other’s company.

Ink Inch is a London-based team of interior and graphic designers. Combing both disciplines creates unity of visual elements. They adopt a simple and holistic approach to their work. All projects are met with “passion, love, and positivity“. We look forward to our next collaboration with Ink Inch.

You can find out more about our artificial flower design services here. Or you can instead read our dedicated sub-page about artificial plants for restaurants.