Alabama Sawyer’s Not So Secret Diary
First thing's first. Let's talk about the psychology of color, specifically the colors that tend to facilitate focus & concentration. Green tends to promote concentration and focus while also playing into aspects of biophilic design. Blue is incredibly calming, which means using it in your office or home would promote calm and aid concentration.
Read more about color psychology here. Now, on to actual design elements. One important consideration is space. Do you want the area to be more open to encourage collaborative discussion, or closed off to ensure individual work gets done?
According to InteriorArchitects.com - in open office spaces "employees experience more uncontrolled interactions, higher levels of stress, and lower levels of concentration and motivation." Clearly there is a need for balance between collaboration and individual work that promotes concentration and productivity. Consider creating "focus areas" - places where people can work independently, and make the rest of the space more open to encourage collaboration and effective group work.
Another possibility is to set up the space similar to a library layout, that is, long conference tables (see image below) that serve as collaborative meeting spaces, (but don't have to if an employee would prefer to work individually.)
There are a ton of different ways to approach the maximization of concentration and focus in interior design elements, and these are just a few, so be sure to check out our sources and further reading section!
Sources & Further Reading
“The biophilia hypothesis ... suggests that humans possess an innate tendency to seek connections with nature"
That’s all well and good, but how does biophilia relate to interior design? After all, the title of this blog suggests there’s a type of design related to biophilia. There is, and it’s called biophilic design. The idea is to reconnect people with nature through various design elements:
"Biophilic design is a concept used within the building industry to increase occupant connectivity to the natural environment through the use of direct nature, indirect nature, and space and place conditions. Used at both the building and city-scale, it is argued that this idea has health, environmental, and economic benefits for building occupants and urban environments, with little drawbacks."
Let's break that definition down a little, and discuss what is meant by direct and indirect nature.
Direct nature- Simply put, direct nature refers to potential physical contact with some sort of natural feature. This can mean taking advantage of natural lighting with skylights, or having a small fountain where people can sit and listen to the calming sounds of moving water.
The stream, plant life, and natural lighting are all examples of direct nature here
Although it may sound odd at first, finding a way to use animals to evoke nature can be achieved through aquariums and gardens. Obviously there are a ton of other ways in which nature can be directly evoked in biophilic design, read about those ways here.
Indirect nature- The use of indirect nature is much less involved than direct nature. To have an indirect experience of nature, there need only by contact with images/ depictions of nature. A beach painting over the fireplace, wood furniture, use of earth tones are all examples of indirect nature. Read more about indirect nature here.
Both the plant & the wooden table base would be considered use of indirect nature
To elaborate, indirect nature can involve the use of wooden furniture. Another reason to use wood furniture is the health benefits. That's right, different materials can actually be more harmful than others, especially in furniture where the user is constantly making contact with its surface.
Wood, however, tends to have less toxins than other materials, so you really don't have to worry about that. A piece of wood furniture that would really tie a biophilia inspired room together would be one of our Alabama Sawyer Lanett Credenza's (see image below.)
Basically, if you're interested in biophilic design, wood furniture is one of the easiest ways to incorporate it into the room. So go ahead, take a look at some of our other pieces as well - and consider this: all our wood comes from the urban forests of Alabama.
The name of the website says it all. A trendy interior design blog that will provide you with all the latest tips and tricks you’ll need to remodel your house. The homepage has several useful links, some of which are labeled, “Remodeling 101”, “Get Inspired”, “Design Travel”, and more for your reading pleasure. Not to mention the sleek and minimal web design. Image taken from Remodelista’s website.
Taken directly from the Amber Interiors website: “Amber Interiors Design Studio is a full-service interior design firm based in Los Angeles, California, founded by Amber Lewis. We serve clients worldwide with services ranging from interior design, interior architecture to furniture design.” If you take a look at some of their projects, you’ll see some lovely interiors. Image taken directly from Amber Interiors website.
This lifestyle blog has a bunch of different sections dedicated to interiors, travel, entertainment, and DIY. Their slogan? “LIFE IS IN THE DETAILS. STYLE ACCORDINGLY.” According to their website, Coco Kelley was, “Founded by Cassandra LaValle, Coco Kelley is a lifestyle brand devoted to fresh takes on the classics.” Image taken directly from the CocoKelley website.
EyeSwoon is one of those blogs that gives a range of knowledge on a variety of topics like food, design, and living. The easy to navigate page layout + web design are just a bonus when you consider how attractive the site really is. According to their website EyeSwoon is, ”Your destination for creativity, inspired by a passion for great food, entertaining & design and dedicated to lovers of beauty everywhere. Come swoon with me as I cook & create, showing you the simple tips and tricks that make every day swoon-worthy.” Image taken from the EyeSwoon website.
Like several other blogs on this list, Apartment 34 covers multiple areas including decor, fashion, beauty, travel, ect… According to their “About” page, “Apartment 34 offers inspiring tips and ideas for an intentional approach to modern living. We share sophisticated décor, style, cooking, travel, entertaining – all the good stuff that helps elevate daily life.” Image taken from the Apartment 34 website.
MYDOMAINE blog: https://www.mydomaine.com/decorating-blogs
Please note that “Famous in AL” is a series of blog posts on famous historical Alabama sites for the purpose of celebrating all of the culture and history that can be found in our own state.
Downtown Birmingham Alabama is home to the famous Alabama Theatre which hosts events ranging from movie screenings to concerts and much more. With beautiful architecture and décor; it won 2011's, "Building of the Year Award from the Alabama Architectural Foundation" ("About the Alabama".) To illustrate the Alabama Theatre’s importance to Birmingham, here is a brief history of the theatre:
Constructed in 1927 as a way to showcase Paramount movies, it was primarily used as a theatre for the following 55 years. Exceptions to this were The Miss Alabama Pageant and the Mickey Mouse Club, first held at the AL Theatre in 1933. MMC sponsored several different charity campaigns for the needy and closed down ten years after staring up. Additionally, the Alabama Theatre hosted the Miss Alabama Pageant from the mid 30's to the 60's. When Birmingham declined in the 60's and 70's, the Alabama underwent multiple changes in ownership. It had to be shut down a few times during that period, but was eventually bought by Birmingham Landmarks, Inc. in 1987 after a fundraiser saved it from ruin. In 1998 the theatre underwent major renovation/ restoration, and now looks like what we know it as today: ("About the Alabama".)
According to its website, the Alabama Theatre's 1998 renovation transformed it from its, "faded grandeur to a sparkling 1927 look with all the gold leaf paint either replaced or cleaned. In addition to the restoration, new carpet was installed in the ladies lounge and new drapes were installed on the stage and organ chambers" ("About the Alabama".) Since the theatre was built in the 20's, it’s home to a famous organ used during silent film screenings. The Mighty Wurlitzer (a fancy type of organ) is a famous relic, and according to the Alabama Theatre's website, the reason the building was spared from destruction. Interestingly enough, the organ is nick named Big Bertha ("About the Alabama".) Without Big Bertha the Alabama would have been demolished since the realtors, "refused to sell it separately. Undeterred, the group [Birmingham Landmarks, Inc.] continued to find support and ultimately raised enough funds to purchase not just the organ but the entire facility" ("About the Alabama".)
It’s a spectacular place, and if you’ve never been, I’d suggest you visit at least once in your life. Pictures really don't do it justice.