Got Zen?

Making your home more Zen does not imply a set of rules or strict guidelines. It is not as much a specific design style, but more of a way to help you offset daily stresses while at home. Zen environments create a sense of balance, relaxation, and harmony.

Walls

There are some simple efforts you can take to make your space flow gracefully. Neutral colors, like soft whites, greys, or shades of pink or beige are optimal for creating a calm living space. Explore variations of one color for more diversity, or use small pops of color that work together.

Floors

Flooring is also an integral part of a Zen lifestyle, and floors should be soft and easy to maintain. If using carpets, make sure they relatively match the floor color or stay in the range of moleskin, gray, or khaki.

Textures

Natural, light and comfortable fabrics should always be used in your stress-free space. Privacy curtains, while soft in fabric, are great for a Zen room as they can reduce noise and block air draughts.

Light

A Zen home calls for plenty of natural and soft lighting throughout. Remove harsh, fluorescent lights and replace them with candles or smaller lamps. Feel free to mix floor lamps with indirect lights, as long as a strong light is not projected onto the ceiling.

Furniture

Zen furniture should have clean lines and not be overly ornamental. Furniture should be high quality and be upholstered with natural, soft fabrics. The bedroom is often the focus of the Zen home, and should have a bed that is fairly high and close to natural light. Try not to let the bed block any entryway, and bed decorations should be kept to a minimum. To make the room more interesting, experiment with different sized pillows (instead of different patterns or pillowcases) and use fabric variations of wool, fleece or mohair as long as they are all natural shades.

Energy

In order to calm your space, use natural scents or room sprays that will help you relax after a long day at work. Sprays with essential oils like lavender or orange, or soy candles are a nice touch. Consider bringing in live plants to clean the air and provide accents of green. Just make sure they’re not too high maintenance! Bonsai trees or terrariums with succulents are ideal.

Try to eliminate distractions as best as you can. If there is a TV in the bedroom, make an effort to conceal it in a cupboard when not in use. Excessive wires or cables can also crowd the space, so try and hide them behind furniture if possible. When any sort of clutter is eliminated, it will significantly improve the flow of your space and enable you to relax.

Best of luck making your home more Zen—and remember; all “rules” are up for interpretation!

Read more about Zen living here: http://freshome.com/2012/12/31/how-to-make-your-home-totally-zen-in-10-steps/