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How the Pandemic Has Affected Our Field of Work

Without a glimpse of a doubt, I think that everyone can agree these past few years have completely changed what we used to think of as “normal.” Unfortunately, it’s an inevitable subject - not only affecting us socially but also mentally, through how we learn, and throughout all fields of work. Studio Kin first hand can confirm that although the world seems to (at times) slowly be returning to normal order, the Interior Design field has yet to budge. In fact, there’s a stronger correlation between the two - the pandemic not only changing the way we live overall, but specifically paving the way for changed interiors in our field of work. So it’s easy to say that there’s good and bad that comes from everything, because we’re really loving some of these new trends!

For those who aren’t involved in the design world - let me introduce to you some of the struggles of the past two pandemic years in the field. To start off, we completely understand delays are out of peoples hands! Unfortunately, not every company is back running fully staffed, which can cause these delays. We are hoping for a positive shift for all workplaces soon. One of the most frequent occurrences for Interior Designers currently is product delays - not only items out of stock, but the delivery process. Previously, a product that would have taken a month to be delivered to our clients door can now be delayed up until late 2022. In addition, finding a product that is in stock and ready to ship is at times just as difficult - with production times also being delayed, and items being backordered. For this reason, it can take us a much longer amount of time to find the perfect item for your home, but it is always worth it! Project delays on site are something that we’ve gotten used to as well, with products such as doors, drawers and light fixtures taking much longer to be delivered and installed. Studio Kin always wants to deliver positive news to our clients, so this can be a bummer - but the end result of the design project always makes up for the wait.

As life itself has slowly changed to a new kind of normal, interiors themselves have done the same. Even prior to the pandemic, the Interior Design field has always been changing - with new trends coming in and out of style continuously. Therefore, we are always prepared for these changes and we have always been up for a challenge at Studio Kin! While our way of life has adjusted, we have spent more time within the comfort of our homes than ever before. For this reason, people are adjusting their homes according to what they need for new everyday life, and what makes them feel the best, stress-free version of themselves through their space. Through our first-hand experience and research, here are just a couple of the trends that have been on the rise, and that we anticipate will be for the next few years, or indefinitely.

1. Home office spaces.

Over the past few years, many people have started working and learning remotely from home - some indefinitely. Increased home working means that many people are either in need of an in-home working space, or have created one in the meantime. One of the most obvious of the new trends is an increased need for home office spaces, and we love the opportunities that come from these rooms!

2. Organic Styled Interiors.

As humans, we naturally feel relaxation through pieces that are found within nature - it’s factual. This is why we are seeing an increased trend in incorporating pieces found in nature back into our living spaces - this is also known as Biophilic Design. This is a trend that Studio Kin has a strong upper hand on — as it is already a part of our company’s signature look! Taking raw and organic materials such as linens, natural wood, stones and greenery and incorporating them into our home designs. We can understand how this trend is gaining more attention as it leaves a relaxing, fresh and calming space from a now unusual lifestyle.

3. Colour trends

Since we have been spending more time than ever at home, many people are realizing that we associate how we feel with the colours of our home. An overlooked topic is colour psychology - how colours can directly impact our stress, mood and feelings. As we are living a new “normal” everyday life, many people are feeling the high demand and stress - in which we want to feel free from in our homes.

As this is recognized, many people have been painting their homes - gravitating to a more calming/neutral colour palette. This can help to reduce intense feelings, and make a space feel more welcoming.

4. Outdoor Seating areas for visiting.

As we all know, indoor visiting has been made to be a discouraged social activity for the past while. This leads to another current home trend as outdoor seating areas have become more demanded. Outdoor visiting has become a way to socially distance, and safely visit friends and family - so we very much encourage this home trend!

5. Less open concept homes.

Open concept homes have been one of the most desired style of home design for quite some time - encouraging conversation, and making a home feel much larger in size. However, due to recent changes in social behaviour, we are afraid that open concepts may become a less desired style of home. Closing off rooms and creating separate spaces in the home can assure separation when company is invited over - limiting the amount of people present, creating additional privacy as we’re at home more than previously, and for potential quarantining. This can also encourage additional rooms of the home for different activities that we currently can’t do elsewhere.

6. Entryways.

Entryways and mudrooms, even prior to covid, had been on the rise in our home designs. Built-in cabinet storage, and console tables can set the tone for your space in a very beautiful way, and they’re some of our favourite home moments. However, as covid continues to be a factor in our everyday lives, the entryway of the home has become a separated space for some homes - being used slightly differently than before. Often now, entryways are used as an area to keep cleaning supplies, sanitize, and create a division between the outside of the home and the inside to assure we keep the next area clean.

7. Use of antibacterial materials.

In consideration of providing our clients with the healthiest, happiest homes possible, we’ve done some continued reading on the most influential materials in relation to taking health measures in the home. As people are more recently concerned about sanitization, specifically in their homes - we found research on future materials that have both antibacterial and antimicrobial aspects to them, to see what could be used more going forward. For instance, many natural and sustainable woods aren’t only good for our health, but are also more sanitary. Materials such as Cork, Bamboo, and Oak are naturally able to stop bacterial growth and micro-organisms due to their reaction in the natural world - carrying anti-fungal properties. Marmoleum, another renewable source, is very similar! Quartz is one of the most preferred countertop choices, especially now - not only is it strong and durable, but it is one of the most sanitary options. Lastly, we learned from Bobby Berk that metals such as Copper, Brass, and Bronze have antimicrobial properties that are more likely to kill off bacteria and keep a cleaner surface. There are also more sanitary choices in fabrics, wall paints and laminates. In addition, many companies are taking this as an opportunity to create more versatile and sanitary finishes!

We’re very thankful that our amazing clients and contracting teams have allowed us to continue working through this pandemic with minimal effort - because it could always be worse. Besides delays, and working from home, we were very blessed to continue working through a time that not all people could! For anyone that has been through the design process during this time - we’re sure you know the struggle, and we thank you on behalf of all designers for your patience. Funny enough, we started Studio Kin at the peak of the Pandemic - May 2020, and so this is what we’re used to. However, as we grow as a company, and continue to move forward through this pandemic, we are hopeful that we will understand the “normality” of the Design business a bit better soon. Nevertheless, if some of these interior trends stay the same, we have no problem with it!

Research from the following links:

All photos from: Pinterest

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