Relaxing Interior

Four soothing decorating ideas to help you relax at home

20 October 2022

Home should be a safe, comforting space where you can truly unwind at the end of a long day. It should be a sanctuary where you can manage any symptoms of stress or anxiety.

All of us will experience stress at some point in our lives. For some, it might be a rare occurrence and manageable. For others, the symptoms of stress might be felt daily which can become overwhelming and lead to other mental health issues. Stress Awareness Day on 2nd November 2022 will highlight how stress can affect different people and what you can do to manage stress before it becomes a problem.

If you experience stress, you’re not alone. In fact, one in 14 UK adults feel stressed every single day (source: CIPHR) and 74% feel so stressed they have been overwhelmed or unable to cope (source: Mental Health Foundation).

Ensuring that your home is a safe, relaxing space can ease the symptoms of stress. We know that it might not act as an instant cure, but decorating your home in calming tones and surrounding yourself with the things you love can provide a sense of comfort. Here are four soothing decorating ideas to help you relax at home and remember, always seek advice from your GP if stress is making you feel overwhelmed.

1) Keep it neutral

A neutral palette can promote a sense of peace. Whilst bright colours can bring an element of fun and happiness, these tones might be too loud and intrusive for someone who is easily stressed.

So, what are soothing colours? Cream, off-white, taupe or other light-toned neutrals are perfect for spaces in which you spend the most time relaxing in such as the living room or bedroom. We’d recommend painting your walls in neutral colours so that you can add a pop of colour with your soft furnishings if you want to.

We love Dulux’s Colour of the Year 2023, Wild Wonder, which is a beautiful neutral colour that will help you feel closer to nature.

2) Relax in candlelight

Candles can really enhance your mood during the autumn and winter months. Dark evenings are the perfect excuse to light your favourite soothing scented candles. It’s hard not to feel at ease in the flicker of candlelight. In fact, it’s been scientifically proven that candles can soothe us. Not only do the soft flames give us something to focus on, the scents can stimulate our brains as explained by Chryssa Chalkia, a psychotherapist and cognitive behavioural therapist:

“The smell of scented candles stimulates our limbic system, the part of the brain that is home to our memory and emotions. Hormones like serotonin and dopamine can be produced to regulate mood. (source: Travel + Leisure).”

Fancy treating yourself? The scented candles from The White Company are some of our favourites, particularly their seasonal scents such as Autumn and Fireside. For some purse-friendly options, check out Calming Spa and Jasmine Bloom from The Range.

3) Display plenty of photo frames

Surrounding yourself with plenty of photos of family and friends can improve your mood when you’re feeling stressed, particularly if you live alone. Having smiling faces adorning your living space can trigger happy memories and provide you with some much-needed comfort when life feels a little overwhelming.

We would recommend dotting photos throughout your entire house and not just limiting them to one room. This way, you can think of your loved-ones with great fondness when you make your way through your home. The hallway is a great place to start as smiling faces will be there to greet or say goodbye to you as you come and go.

You don’t have to spend a fortune on photo frames either. We find that supermarkets such as Asda, Sainsbury’s and Tesco provide beautiful frames that rival their expensive counterparts.

4) Create an indoor jungle

Ok, so you don’t necessarily have to go over the top, but we love an indoor jungle. House plants have so many benefits. Not only do they help purify your home (click here to read our blog which will give you all the details), but they provide that pop of colour that promotes happiness.

They don’t need to be high maintenance either. If you are guilty of forgetting to water house plants, invest in some artificial alternatives instead. Sure, you won’t get the air purifying benefits, but they will still look beautiful and will improve your mood just that little bit more. The range of artificial plants from M&S are very impressive and will have your guests asking “is this real?”

We hope you have found our top four soothing decorating ideas useful and consider adopting some of them in your new build home in the run-up to Stress Awareness Day. Remember, if you ever feel overwhelmed and struggling to cope, always seek advice from your GP.

We’d love to see how you’ve created a calm environment in your new build home. Make sure you share your photos with us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.