2021 is definitely the year of the indoor plant!  They are are really popular this year for the home, office, reception area and restaurant. Indoor plants are big news – especially those with large lush or variegated leaves.They will be the focal point to any room and  can be used to liven up a dull corner. Indoor plants add structure, colour and character to a room as well as a lovely natural feeling. Equally as important as selecting a lovely houseplant, is choosing the best pots for your indoor plants..

The right pot can really transform a plant and accentuate its natural beauty. Choosing the best pots for your indoor plants takes time as there are some important points to consider.

Size matters!

Before choosing a decorative pot for your plant, it is important to ensure that the plant is in the correctly-sized flower pot that will fit inside the decorative pot.

Best pots for in door plants

House plants are usually in a plastic or terracotta flowerpot

The average plant needs to be re-potted every year. Slower growing plants like cacti, can be re-potted every two- three years.

If the plant is in pot that is too small, it will not grow well, as it will be root-bound. If the plant is in an over-large pot, there is a risk of it developing root rot if the soil is remains too damp for the plant.

When choosing a replacement flower pot, the average recommended increase in size is 7.5 – 10 cm (3- 4 inches) and this is ideal for most indoor plants.. For cacti, which grow far more slowly, an increase in size of 2.5 – 5 cm ( 1- 2 inches) is ideal. Most people pot their plant in a plain terracotta or plastic plant pot, with drainage holes and then place this pot into a larger decorative pot. (https://www.thesill.com/blogs/care-miscellaneous/plant-care-repotting)

Choosing the best material for your plant pots

The most popular type of pots are glazed ceramic. Plain coloured and shiny, matt or textured – your choice! There are numerous patterned, striped and decorated available, but plain or minimalist is the preferred style for 2021.

Natural materials are always popular and pot covers made from woven grasses, bamboo, wicker and wood are all classic favourites.

Metal plant pots are also popular and silver, copper and brass are all trending – especially either with a silk or textured finish. Steel is fast becoming a popular new material for plant pots.Choosing the best pots for your house plants has never been easier!

What about colour?

Floresy the best containers for houseplants

Colourful plant pots add character

Colour is an important consideration when choosing the  best pots for your houseplants.The most popular colours for plant pots are soft neutral shades that enhance the foliage of the houseplant. Contemporary styled pots can look chic. Opt for matt white and matt grey with a silver or gold band. Matt is always a popular finish and ‘organic shades such as dove greys,soft browns and greens.

Simply styled pots in bold colours such as red, blue and purple, should be used sparingly to highlight a colour in a room – too much and the colour becomes overpowering. Pots with Bohemian patterns in natural shades add character. Coffee and cream patterns look good in most rooms. watch out for the trending design – pot covers made to look like marble. These look really stylish look against large, dark foliage. Pots that are brightly patterned are fun for windowsills. The plant inside needs to have plain green leaves, otherwise the pot will be overpowering.

Is shape important?

Whilst round plant pots have long been the classical favourite, there are some really attractive oval and square plant pots to choose.

Floresy the best containers for houseplants

Hanging baskets are great if you lack floor space

Collections of small square plant pots in a neutral shade are the perfect way to display a selection of plants chosen for their varied foliage, colour and shape. These containers are ideal for an interesting selection of cacti too.

What floor space is limited – be creative!  Contemporary styled wall planters that look great grouped on the wall with a selection of different plants including trailing ones. Some of the new styles include diamond shape planters in glass and steel. Clean, simple lines are best as they do not detract from the beauty of foliage of the plants.

Other fun types of pots for displaying indoor plants include hanging baskets and plant screens. Plant screens are eye-catching! Made in rattan, wood or metal, plant screens feature different planters attached at varying heights. The right combination of plants with different coloured and textured leaves plus a couple of trailing plants, cam look very effective.

If you feel that your houseplant could benefit from some height, there are various different plant stands and tripods to choose from in wood, metal and bamboo and many can be used with your own plant pot.

Check the drainage holes

When choosing the best pots for your houseplants check the drainage holes – especially if you are planting straight into the decorative plant pot.. Most plants need well-drained soil, so pots should drainage holes in the bottom. Cover these with a layer of small stones before adding the plant and its soil as the stones will help drainage, but you will need to place a drip tray underneath.

Many of the decorative flower pots have drainage holes. Beware! Even if you use an inner flower pot, water could escape through both pots and mark furniture. If you choose a decorative flower pot with a drainage hole, sometimes a rubber plug is provided. If not, it is worth investing in a drip tray/ saucer to place underneath. Choose one that suits in glazed ceramic, plastic or bamboo. The tray/ saucer should be the same shape and just marginally bigger than the bottom of the pot..One in the same colour will not detract from the design of the plant pot.

Remember that the red clay (terracotta) pots and their trays are porous. Never choose a terracotta drip tray to use indoors as water could still permeate through and mark the furniture underneath.

Choosing the best pot for your house plant is essential, because it can really make the difference between an ordinary plant and a spectacular one! If you opt to use faux plants, the correct sized container in a complementary colour and material is also important. To avoid detection, a clever trick is group your beautiful faux plants among real ones, all in similar pots – no one will ever know the difference!

Floresy Best pots for indoor plants

 

Indoor plants are fashionable – but which ones? How can indoor plants be effectively used in the office environment?

Indoor plants are big news this year and interior designers are using them to add character, interest and fresh air to spaces. Indoor plants of all kinds will enjoy great popularity this year – and the bigger the better! Trending indoor plants are large leafy ones to cheer up dull corners and include all types of trailing ones as part of this year’s ‘rustic’ theme that is being used in restaurants, reception areas and offices to add character. As well as all the old favourites, there are  many new plants available including some very exotic tropical ferns from Japan and New Zealand.

Many people working from home last year decided to buy indoor plants for the first time. As a result,  indoor plants have enjoyed a huge surge in popularity. As people return to their work spaces, many will be taking plants with them as they have discovered how they quickly transform a space. There are great psychological benefits to bringing nature indoors too and caring for a plant. (https://www.prevention.com/health/g27586276/benefits-of-indoor-plants/)

In 2021, plant pots are extra important. Plain neutral colours  are best as they complement foliage plants perfectly. Luxe metallic pots in textured silver, pewter and copper look good as do containers in natural materials such as hessian and wood.  Shape is all- important in 2021.  Square and oval shapes will dominate and either smooth or textured in natural tones. A layer of tiny white or natural-coloured stones, covering the soil continues to be ‘the’ look.

The perfect plant for beginners

Floresy new trending indoor plants

This dramatic plant is very good tempered and hard to kill!

Sansevieria or ‘Mother in Law’s Tongue’ has been a firm favourite for years as it is hardy and can withstand neglect!.

In recent years it has been also been named ‘Snake Plant’. Dramatic to look at with long variegated sword-like leaves, it

thrives well in a light office, in good light, but away from direct  sunlight. It is said to be an effective air purifier. This dramatic plant is

looks effective if several are planted in a row a long planter and placed against a bare wall.  This plant is the  ideal choice for spaces where plants are  easily forgotten!

Cultivate a fast growing plant

Ficus Altissima is an attractive leafy plant that is a trending indoor plant for 2021 as it easily grows so  quickly – often to two metres in height! This plant is much easier to care for than its more complicated cousin, the Fiddle Leaf Fig. Its leaves are large with silvered veins which adds to its interest factor. Philodendron is another good looking plant that grows quickly too and has vine-like leaves and the heart-shaped variety is perfect for an indoor hanging basket..

Check out the prophecy of a money tree!

The money tree (Pachisa aquatica) is fascinating as it has interwoven trunks and numerous leaves. This plant loves humidity, but regular misting will help. Surprisingly,  it only needs watering every ten days. Folklore says that the more leaves that a money tree produces, the more money its owner will have! To encourage it to grow quickly, plan to re-pot the plant every two years.

Add a hint of luxury to your desk

Velvet Calathea is predicted to be a trending plant in 2021. This good looking plant gets its name from the berry-coloured velvet-like underside to its leaves. On the top side, the leaves are two tone green with a central pattern in bright green that look like feathers. This is the ideal plant for a desk, as it thrives on indirect sunlight and not much water.

 

 

Choose a trending  cactus

Floresy New trends in indoor plants

Many people find cacti fascinating

Many people find cacti fascinating.  All the old favourites remain popular, but as well as these, there are some great new types on the scene this year. The larger and more dramatic the cactus – the better!. For an eye-catching plant choose the fishbone cactus. This cactus has long, flat irregularly shaped that look remarkably like fish bones! The great news is that this intriguing looking cactus is low maintenance. It is the perfect way to brighten up a dull corner.

The ‘Bunny Ear’ cactus has large succulent rounded leaves that , as its name suggests, look like the ears of rabbits. This cactus too is easy to care for and thrives in slightly sunnier places.  Introduce some fun with the monkey tail cactus. This cactus has long stems that are covered in fine white hairs that grow downwards. This cactus has bright red flowers and is perfect to put on a sunny shelf in the office.

The Mistletoe Cactus is a fun looking plant with long shaggy ‘hair’ made up of numerous succulent stems. If this cactus is happy where you have placed it, it produces white berries like mistletoe. As well as mini single pots containing a single cactus, a collection of identical pots each with a different cactus is a fun way to liven up a windowsill or the corner of a desk.

 

And the clever way to always enjoy beautiful plants

Be successful with your display of indoor plants – the clever way. Caring for them can sometimes be difficult. Choose some beautiful trending indoor plants for 2021- but faux plants for the clever solution. Place the faux plants in positions where they could easily thrive.  Faux plants are incredibly life-like. As a result, is impossible to tell the difference! Select types of faux indoor plants that are trending for 2021 and you will be making a style statement too. The only downside is that a faux money tree cannot predict the finances of its owner!

Floresy office design

Work levels are optimised in light bright spaces

There are many benefits for using natural light in your building. Natural light can raise the mood and is known to boost the immune system. The design and detail of furniture and furnishings can be better appreciated in natural light. Colours are natural and not altered as they are with other lighting. Another major benefit is the amount of energy saved and the lower cost of electric bills.

With the beginning of the New Year now behind us, the darker months of winter are seen by many as the perfect time to redecorate. It is fun to restyle spaces to reflect current trends and to make them more practical as work patterns change. if you are planning to give yours a fresh new look, it is easy to incorporate some features that will maximise on the use of light coming in through the windows to make working easier and more comfortable.

Mirrors are perfect

The addition of some really large wall mirrors are a great way to increase natural light in a room as they reflect the light coming in through the windows. More light creates a brighter and refreshing ambiance in a room. Increasing the amount of natural light is also a clever way to make the room seem more spacious. The ideal place to hang the mirror is on the wall opposite the window as this will double the amount of day light in the room.

A collection of small mirrors hung on a wall together can worth well too. Another clever way to reflect day light is by choosing chrome furniture or ones with glass or mirror decoration. With more light being reflected into the room, there will probably no longer be a need for strip lighting. Numerous small recessed ceiling lights that are adjustable, can be very effective and their light is not so stark. 

Choose a lighter paint palette

Dark wall colours absorb, rather than reflect, natural light and whilst this can create a warm cosy atmosphere – choosing these colours does not maximise on the amount of natural light. If you are planning to paint the walls, why not opt for clean white walls for maximum reflection of the day light? If you don’t like the starkness of white,  light, silvery grey remains a popular paint colour in 2021. There are many other soft pale hues on the market with subtle hints of gold, pink and green and these all work well.

While you have the paintbrush out, is the ceiling white? Darker coloured ceilings make rooms look smaller, more intimate and darker. White ceilings will make the room feel higher and more airy and will definitely help increase the amount of light. Brighten up dark wood or painted doors, door frames and window sills with a coat of fresh white paint. (https://www.houselogic.com/remodel/painting-lighting/choosing-paint-colors-how-light-affects-color/)

Opt for lighter fabrics too

Darker fabric colours work in just the same way as dark paint and will absorb natural light rather than reflect it. Why not introduce some lighter colours into your space? This will work well with the current popular trend for resimercial styling which is making workspaces more homelike. Crisp functional colours are out of fashion this year and softer shades are popular. Wood is the preferred material for 2021, but not heavy, dark woods. Choosing lighter woods like pine and oak is important because these help make your space feel lighter, brighter, more spacious. in keeping with new trends, lighter coloured woods are also less formal .

Finally when considering fabrics, think about window dressings. To help maximise the amount of natural light coming in the windows, it is essential to keep  window dressings light and bright. Dark heavy curtains and thick heavy blinds decrease the amount of light penetrating the room. If possible, leave windows without either will definitely help the natural light to come in.

 Redesign your desk configuration.

Bright natural light is beneficial

With many staff members still working remotely, ‘hot desking is fast  becoming the norm. Many spaces are being redesigned to make room for video conferencing facilities.  it you are planning to  rearrange the office, it is the ideal time to consider space and making the most of natural light. If possible, it is good to have desks placed near windows, because the most can be made of the daylight. This season, large indoor plants are proving popular with interior designers. They use them to enhance the light airy and less formal approach to office designs. The addition of some lush leafy plants, adds interest and informality to a room and uplifts spirits.

The good news is that whilst opting for larger windows and installing skylights is possible, but costly, our suggestions for maximising natural light in your work space are quick, effective and economical – Promising you a thrifty start to 2021.















 

The global COVID pandemic has driven us inside. But one positive has been a surge of interest in interior design.

During this time, we’ve had the opportunity to decide what home improvements need to be made. For interior designers, a chance to look at new concept ideas to accommodate our new normal.

New trends include clever home offices and ‘flex space’  which ensure homes grow with families. With the housing market at a standstill, this new use of space means less need to move.

As England experiences lockdown mark 2  and restaurants and bars, close we are all missing the ambience of our friendly locals.

So what can be done about this?

Creating a home bar

Well, home bars are also trending and with Christmas on the horizon, they’re likely to be very popular this winter!

Home bars can the ideal way to relax at home after a long day and to offer an intimate social atmosphere for others to share. There’s something very appealing about being able to whizz up a couple of snazzy cocktails in the evening!

There’re many great ideas for home bars and some of them are enjoying a renaissance. The 1920s bar cart and globe drinks holder are proving popular once again. They are relatively small and versatile. You can even find designs online for making a DIY version! Home bars are being created in spare cupboards and on the top of sideboards.

Do your research

For interior designers, you’ll be able to show your clients how a home bar can be cleverly incorporated in dining rooms and kitchens as finding space in many homes can be a challenge.

Remember to question your client about their favourite bar. What kept them going back? What did they like about the ambience? Why did it feel comfortable and like home?

Floresy - researching ideas

Design ideas

Once again, the curved corner bar is proving popular. If your client does have space, you can design a flamboyantly themed area with a wet bar (a bar with a small sink).  Finish the design off with stylish bar stools and consider a wine chiller as an extra feature.

For those working with a smaller area, the bar will need to be incorporated into another room. Proportions will be an important factor, so bear this in mind.

The home bar must be in balance with the rest of the room and compliment the décor, style and colours, as this will ensure a feeling of spaciousness. Using cleverly placed mirrors and lighting can also help.

When designing a home bar they should be well organised and look inviting. Some smart-looking glasses and somewhere handy to keep all the necessary bar equipment are essential. For making cocktails, there’ll need to be somewhere to store mixers and garnishes too. 

The winter of 2020/ 2021 is certainly going to be a long one. If the second lockdown continues beyond 1 December, the option of having a home bar is a very appealing one.

The most famous cocktail book of them all, the iconic – Bartender’s Guide by Jerry Thomas (1862) is certainly going to be on lots of people’s Christmas lists this year!

There’s been a renaissance in the popularity of Victorian interior decoration, with designers successfully incorporating beautiful heirlooms into modern homes. Creating a Victorian-inspired parlour can be remarkably easy as it only requires one or two key pieces of furniture. These can be enhanced with Victorian-inspired decorative features and statement houseplants that were so loved in that era!

The Victorian years were important ones for Britain, as they marked a period of great change. The Industrial Revolution brought wealth to many people and with it, a love of lavish and ornate properties. Large Victorian houses often had solariums, greenhouses and atriums as the Victorians loved plants – especially exotic ones such as palms, ferns, beautiful jasmine, hibiscus and fuchsia.

For the first time, furniture was no longer made by individual craftsmen but by numerous workers and machines in factories.  Rooms were spacious with high ceilings. Styles were large and curvaceous with carved detail and button embellishments on the fabric. The classic examples of Victorian furniture include the leather Chesterfield sofa, large mahogany sideboards and dining tables with claw and ball feet.

Victorian Interior Ideas

 

Walls

In a Victorian parlour, the walls were often painted in dark colours such as forest green or claret. A feature wall in one of these colours works well in a modern house, with the other walls covered with period floral wallpaper. In keeping with the period, using decorated cornicing that featured patterns of fleur-de-lys, garlands, wreaths and ovals will complete the look.

Curtains

Curtains in the Victorian home were voluminous, floor-length and pleated.  Sumptuous fabrics such as velvet and damask were in rich plain colours. Curtains were also extravagantly lined in silk or fine wool and hung on gilded curtain rails or complemented by pelmets covered in the same fabric.  Layered closest to the windows were the first mass-produced Scottish lace.

You can mirror the colour and fabric of the curtains as well as the floral designed wallpaper by scattering cushions. Tassels can be added as trims on curtain ties and cushions as these were much loved by the Victorians too!

Ornaments

There were plenty of ornaments on display including pretty chintz china tea sets. These were felt to be the sign of good taste – and wealth. In complete contrast to the modern minimalism… more was definitely more!

With lofty ceilings, large paintings, sizeable wall tapestries and grandfather clocks were popular. To garner the flooring of that period use either a beautiful wooden parquet floor or smart tiling.

Plants

No Victorian parlour was complete without magnificent plants. The Victorians loved large lush houseplants which were usually placed in metal and wicker pots and sometimes displayed in tiers. Palms and ferns of all kinds were popular and so was the Aspidistra (Cast Iron plant) as it was deemed a  ‘good-natured’ plant that refused to die! More exotic and equally popular plants included the Abutilon from Brazil with large, vibrant, bell-shaped flowers. The Jerusalem Cherry, with its pretty white flowers that turn into reddish-orange berries, was also much-loved.

 The Victorians adored ivy and encouraged them to grow up walls and along bannister rails.

In Victorian times, the lady of the house or her servants had plenty of time to tend to the houseplants to ensure they always looked perfect. Today, life is much busier, so choosing gorgeous faux plants is the ideal way to complete ‘the look’ without all the hard work!

Whether you’re planning to refurbish your reception area, restaurant or staff meeting rooms, it’s important to make the space attractive, workable and memorable. One of the best ways this can be done is by introducing a few interesting pieces of antique furniture. This can help create an intriguing combination of contemporary and vintage designs, using textures, shapes and styles.

Say Goodbye to Bland

Much of today’s modern furniture is practical but can sometimes be bland. However, you can greatly enhance them with the inclusion of a few special pieces of antique furniture. These additions will introduce a sense of warmth and grandeur. Antique furniture oozes history and character and its style portrays the high levels of craftsmanship of the past. 

Remember, a few carefully chosen pieces are all you need to transform an area and give it personality. Interior designers advise that the ratio of antique to contemporary furnishings is 20% old and 80% new. If you want to emphasise the furniture styles perfectly, it’s best to choose a neutral colour for the walls such as ivory or silver grey.

You may consider a large wooden antique coffee table for a reception area. Include a couple of antique armchairs with beautifully turned legs. If the armchairs need reupholstering, the fabric can be chosen in your company colours to complement the company logo. The rest of the seating can be in a modern design as the two styles will blend remarkably well. Have both the modern and antique upholstery in similar tones to unite. To combat the antique furniture looking heavy – opt for lighter colours. 

Other pieces of furniture that can look good are:

  • Antique wall clocks, ornate gilt-edged mirrors and large period paintings.
  • An antique cloak rack or umbrella stands which can be a fun and quirky additions too.
  • Shelves with a series of interesting antique curios on display can add interest.
  • Vintage textiles can be used to add warmth to a room, including beautiful hand-knotted Persian rugs which make spectacular wall hangings.

5 Clever Antique Additions

  1. In restaurants, vintage oak writing desks and dressers can look stylish and be used for storage.
  2. Lighting is the easy way to introduce other antiques and traditionally styled brass lanterns. Tiffany lamps and sparkling crystal chandeliers can all be used to create lovely lighting effects.
  3. If there is room, you can always create a ‘talking point’ by having an old postbox or telephone box on display in one corner – the latter can be cleverly converted into a wine fridge!
  4.  Give cloakrooms a warm antique character with the introduction of a round antique pub table. Decorate it with a plant arrangement, a basket with small rolled hand towels and a couple of period prints hung on the wall above.

If you cannot find the piece of furniture that you have in mind in your local antique shops, don’t forget to look in furniture auction rooms and charity furniture warehouses as both of these are like treasure troves. There are various craftsmen around the country that make brand new furniture in traditional styles too.

Floresy- Antique shop

Using Plants to Develop the Theme

It is fun to complement antique furniture with plant displays that mirror that particular period. If you have Victorian furniture, it is fun to accentuate the character with the addition of some of the ‘parlour plants’ that the Victorians loved! These included all types of palms, various ferns, fragrant jasmine and potted citrus trees. In Victorian homes, the palms and ferns were often sizeable so this is the ideal way to create interest and decorate an empty corner. You can fill porcelain washing bowl and matching pitchers with house plants. You can also do the same with an old teapot and a  pretty maidenhair fern. For easy care plants, choose top quality faux plants as they look incredibly realistic but require nothing more than a regular dust.

The clever introduction of antique furniture will definitely enhance your commercial space, introducing warmth and character that your customers will both notice and appreciate. 

 

 

 

Floresy - Antique chandeliers

 

 

The reception area is the first room your customers see, so it’s important it looks exceptional. After all ‒ first impressions really do count! This crucial area is often given no thought or attention and yet they are like ‘the window of your company’s soul’. However, with careful thought, you can create an impressive space that not only reflects your organisation but can be used as a valuable marketing tool.

So, is it time for an upgrade?

Start With the Walls and Floor

Ensure your flooring is practical as well as hardwearing ‒ there will be plenty of traffic, so it must always look clean and in good condition. Wood looks homely, whilst tiles look smart and efficient. Whatever you decide, choose a neutral shade, but don’t be tempted to add a rug as these can be a trip hazard. 

Think neutral colours for the walls too, for example, white is crisp and clean looking but can look stark. Softening the colour with an ivory or cream works well and you can always break this up by having one ‘statement wall’ in your company’s colours. 

Choose Great Artwork…

More than anything else, the artwork you hang on the walls will define the character of your reception area. Many companies use artwork to enhance their branding by incorporating either the colours or a large framed picture of the company logo. In restaurants and hotels, the artwork can be bright and contemporary or classic in style. This all depends on the character and ambience you are trying to create.

Floresy - Hotel reception art

…and stylish Furniture

The reception area is where people first arrive, meet company representatives, wait for meetings or their table reservation. It is really important to ensure that this area is attractively furnished and has comfortable seating. There are a variety of styles to consider; the clean minimalistic lines of Nordic furniture and the beautifully curved shapes of classic styles – plus all those in between!

It’s important to remember that the furniture should be good quality and well made as it will be constantly in use. It’s also very important to have furniture that can be easily cleaned as mud and split drinks will be common occurrences. A large central coffee style table will prove very useful too!

Assess Your Lighting Needs

Lighting is an aspect of interior design that frequently gets forgotten but is so important from a practical point of view. Carefully placed lamps and spotlights can create pools of light helping to develop the room’s ambience. Adequate lighting in a reception area is vital, as many customers will want to read whilst they wait and staff will need to carry out duties such as taking payments etc.   

Other Points to Consider

  1. Do you need somewhere for people to hang coats and jackets? An enclosed wall cupboard with plenty of hanging space looks smart.
  2. Do you need a stand for rain-drenched umbrellas?
  3.  If you are welcoming visitors to your company, consider investing in a coffee machine.  A complimentary coffee whilst they wait can be a popular addition.  Pay careful consideration to dirty spoons and condiments left around, especially in these times of COVID.
  4. Would customers enjoy reading a magazine? But only keep a few fresh copies available rather than a huge pile of tatty old ones!

The Final Touches

By now your new reception area will be looking very stylish but may feel as though it is missing something important – and it is, but this can easily be put right. 

Include Plants!

…better yet artificial plants.

 A single large plant in a corner can look dramatic, or a large planter with a variety of different houseplants should do the trick! If the reception desk or coffee table looks dull, a beautiful plant arrangement in a stylish container will definitely make all the difference. Trailing plants can be cleverly used to add interest to a plain section of wall or to disguise an ugly staircase.

Meyer Davis designed hotel lounge

Hotel lounge uses low planting to offer seated privacy.

Divide seating areas with colourful climbing plants can work well as light can still pass through. When it comes to artificial plants you don’t have to worry about high maintenance, and they’ll look great all year round.

Creating a smart new reception area will pay dividends as customers will feel warmly welcomed and it won’t be long before they return again!

Retro style never really loses its popularity and once again it is amongst the most trending interior design styles today.  Retro style brings together an eclectic mixture of furniture styles from the 1950s, 60s and 70s and gives them a fun modern twist with the addition of trendy wall art, cushions and throws.  

The retro-style features such wonderful furniture such as side tables, cabinets and beautiful chandeliers and is the perfect way to incorporate a family heirloom into the modern home or to bring a new lease of life to pieces of furniture that would otherwise be considered as dated – Retro is the perfect way to recycle and upcycle quality made pieces that are both stylish and functional and incorporate them in a fresh new look for any space. 

Go Retro With Colour

One of the key points to consider when creating this style is to play with bold and strong colours that were popular in the past. The most popular shades were avocado green, orange and mustard yellow and these can be cleverly combined and contrasted with brown, black, white, aqua blue and reds. 

Since retro colours are bold and strong, spaces can have a neutral background to be used like a blank canvas, as this will accentuate the styles of the furniture and the colour will be provided by the soft furnishings. For example, an all-white restaurant with boldly coloured furniture certainly makes a statement, as too will a single statement wall. The colours can be emphasised perfectly using modern touches such as coloured picture frames,  throws and table runners.

Floresy- retro interior design  

And Stylish Materials

Beautiful wood was the most popular material in these eras. Woods with a red-tint including cherry, walnut, oak and beech -the most fashionable being attractively grained teakwood. These woods can be found in classic pieces of furniture, as flooring options and in a variety of accessories such as fruit bowls and lamp bases. For fun, look out for retro styles that combine grained wood with chrome metal and leather. To complete the retro look add a large colourful shaggy rug. An alternative flooring that sets the tone perfectly, is large black and white tiles in a checkerboard pattern  

Lighting 

Lighting is a clever way to enhance the old fashioned mood of these eras. It is worth hunting for such typical retro styles as wall sconces. Industrial styled glass shades and stainless steel pendant lamps look great suspend above the dining table. Beautiful chandeliers are so stylish and will cast colourful spangles of light around the room. Why not check out charity shops for spare light fittings? You just don’t know what they have lurking in a forgotten corner!  If you are given any lights, getting them PAP tested by an electrician to ensure they are safe, is essential.

Sleek Furniture

Retro furniture is easily recognised by its free form, simple curves, abstract shapes which all have no fancy details. The furniture has its origin in the classic Bauhaus style. The focus for the designs of these eras was on functionality, minimalism and lightness rather than more elaborate designs. Chairs usually had lower backrests, at shoulder height, with no padded armrests. So these could well need the modern additions of cushions and a throw for comfort! Sofas were sizeable; broad, long and easily seating three people. The sofas were often decorated with multi-coloured cushions in orange, gold and avocado and in tactile fabrics such as velvet, silk and even leather. 

Retro furniture design often combined several different materials. Wood and metal and wooden topped tables with metal legs were popular. When bar stools first appeared, they were a sell-out and inspired the first designs of much-loved breakfast bar. Wooden sideboards with pencil-thin legs were popular as were Ottomans covered in a jigsaw made from offcuts of soft velvet.

Floresy- retro sofa

Prints, Patterns and accessories

When it comes to achieving the perfect retro feel, the correct use of patterns and prints is essential. Patterns were mostly geometric and used for tiling, flooring, wallpapers and upholstery. Curtains were often patterned with geometric or ornamental designs and psychedelic wallpaper prints were popular – although in modern retro-styled homes, maybe one feature wall would be preferable to all four!

Add some Retro houseplants.

The 1950s/60s/70s were a time when everyone loved houseplants!  You will need to look out for the ultimate in your local charity shop – a macramé hanging basket – to fill with a huge trailing ivy!  Other popular plants were large Swiss Cheese plants, Rubber plants and hard to kill Spider plants. Many polished teak sideboards were decorated with pink and purple flowered African violets displayed in textured ceramic pots or wicker baskets. Whereas in the past, many would share coffee and ponder why their Swiss Cheese plant leaves were not growing with the current splits, now you can buy gorgeous faux plants that will make your life more carefree!

Creating a retro interior design is great fun and a clever way to pull together different older styles of furniture.  Using quality pieces of older furniture makes sense as they are beautifully made and built to last. Cleverly combining them with modern touches in retro colours will create a warm, welcoming room – but beware,  Granny might just claim her furniture back!

In the last few years, eco-friendly restaurant designs have become game-changers in the commercial interior industry. More consumers are opting for restaurants that offer healthy food and a sustainable, eco-friendly atmosphere. Restaurant designers are having to meet new generation standards for more environmental friendly restaurants.

So let us discuss exactly what we mean when we say ‘eco-friendly restaurant design.’ Along with healthy food, the space should be environmentally friendly too. Eco-friendly design focuses on minimum adverse impact on nature by choosing the right materials and techniques.

A recent survey showed that 65-70% of consumers are willing to spend more on green restaurants and dining that causes less harm to our environment. Restaurateurs and interior designers are becoming more conscious of the eco-friendly benefits such as reduced energy consumption, low maintenance cost, reduced usage of toxic material and better air quality. With this in mind, let us take a look at how we can create green, eco-friendly restaurant spaces.

6 Ways to Create an Eco- Friendly Restaurant

Reducing water wastage

The amount of water that is wasted can add up to millions of gallons. From dishwashing stations to bathrooms, from cooking to serving customers. With the amount of water depleting, it is of utmost importance to conserve it. This can be achieved by using low flow faucets, sensor-activated faucets, energy star appliances and equipping restrooms with water-saving toilets and urinals.

If the restaurant has landscapes and greenery, then use sprinklers with timers or opt for artificial plants as this requires no water at all.

Using energy star appliances

Energy star appliances reduce the consumption of water and electricity. Smart investment in these appliances will reduce the costs in the long run.

Lighting and electricity usage

When it comes to light fixtures and decorative elements in a restaurant these play a significant role. Maximum natural lighting and ventilation is a winner, with lots of open spaces and large windows. But in terms of artificial lighting, energy-efficient light fixtures such as LED, Halogen and CFL’s can be used. Energy star light fixtures can be installed as they reduce the heat by 75% and are considered as more sustainable options. Incorporating sensor-operated lights that switch on only when spaces (restrooms, refrigerators) are in use, and on spot air conditioners are great alternatives.

Performing thermostat check

Indoor temperatures should be kept moderate. It is always wise to use a programmable thermostat

Floresy -thermostat

Using sustainable materials

The roofing material should be energy star compliant. Include a special coating or glazing to windows that can prevent extreme temperatures and provide thermal comfort. Smart awnings can be installed on windows to reduce solar heat. Paints should be heat reflective and non-hazardous such as low volatile organic compound paints. Painting the walls in lighter shades can reflect 80% of solar radiation.

Also walls, furniture and floorings can be adorned with sustainable materials such as wood, cork and bamboo. Concrete and brick are apt in terms of eco-friendliness and in creating a beautiful ambience.  Using cotton and wool for upholstery is a great alternative to man-made synthetics.

Effective waste management

Industrial waste should be recycled properly, if not discarded appropriately. Nowadays most of the restaurants are becoming ‘zero waste’. This means they do not produce any food waste or rubbish in order to reduce their carbon footprint on the world.

Aiming to make your restaurant eco friendly is definitely a challenge on its own. But by implementing the above and going by the eco-friendly design concepts, designers and restaurateurs will surely create a positive impact on society and the environment at large.

In recent times, bamboo has become a design favourite for flooring. Wooden flooring has been a popular option for residential and commercial spaces, but the cost factor can be a concern. This is where bamboo flooring can make a real impact in terms of cost, as well as aesthetics and functionality. 

It is said that bamboo is one of the fastest-growing plants in the world. Once you cut a bamboo plant, it can grow back to the same height in the short span of 5 – 7 years, making deforestation less of a factor. 

So the next question is… what exactly is bamboo flooring?

Types of Bamboo Planks

These floors are manufactured using strips or strands of the bamboo which are cut, dried and processed into flooring planks.

  • Vertical bamboo flooring is where strips of bamboo are glued vertically to form planks. 
  • Horizontal planks have the strips glued horizontally, making the bamboo grains more prominent in appearance on the surface than the vertical ones. 
  • Strand woven is where the strands are woven together using machine locking under extreme heat and pressure to form the planks. These floors are available in click-lock or floating planks with an underlayment. Although the horizontal planks have a beautiful grainy appearance, stranded woven planks are more durable, resilient and hardwearing in terms of functionality. It’s said that a plank of stranded woven bamboo is two to three times as hard as an oak flooring plank. This makes it highly recommended in commercial spaces such as hotels, offices, restaurants, gyms etc, where there is a greater footfall.

 Most of the bamboo floorings are naturally toned in light or yellow hues. However, the darker tones can be achieved through staining or carbonisation, where the planks are subjected to high temperatures. You can also use the ‘hand scraping’ method to bring a distressed look to the bamboo flooring. 

 

Floresy - Bamboo trees

Pros and Cons of Bamboo Flooring

Pros

  • Bamboo flooring is known to be one of the most affordable flooring options. 
  • Bamboo is known as organic and sustainable, making it an eco-friendly alternative to carpets, laminated flooring and tiles. 
  • It’s an ideal choice for commercial and residential spaces in terms of style. It’s natural tones, variety of colours and finishes make it aesthetically versatile for any space. 
  • In terms of maintenance and upkeep, it is water-resistant, easy to mop, sweep and clean, and in case it loses its shine, a quick retouch and repolish will have it looking as good as new.  
  • Bamboo floorings are easy to install compared to many other flooring options.

Cons

  • Although bamboo is water-resistant, it is not 100% waterproof.  So don’t install in extreme water prone areas as this can lead to distortion and swelling.
  • Bamboo can be installed in fluctuating and humid temperatures but extreme humidity can result in planks shrinking. Therefore, it’s best not to install this flooring outside. 
  • Although it is a hard-wearing floor covering, you may still find scratches and dents to the surface if you do not look after it properly.
  • The manufacturing and glueing process involves the use of chemicals. Check to see whether the planks are free of VOC paints and formaldehyde. 
  • Although the carbonisation process gives a variety of stains, it makes the plank soft and unstable.