When I embarked on designing the rooms of my renovated home back in 2020, I really wasn’t sure where to begin. I searched the internet, using printed articles and YouTube videos and eventually I developed my ideas into an interior design plan with 3 easy steps. So, if you’d like to know how to design your room and don’t want to spend hours searching the web, then you’ve come to the right place. Read this step by step guide on how to approach designing your room.
Full disclosure, I have to admit that, back in 2020 when we did our renovation during the pandemic, I hadn’t fully appreciated the benefits of creating a completely sustainable interior design plan. We were so intent on getting everything completed so we could move back into our home before another lockdown occurred, that my awareness and understanding of sustainable practices developed later, once we were living in our forever home.
I have since realised that learning how to design your room sustainably can be both fulfilling and environmentally responsible. Whether you’re starting from scratch or looking to make eco-conscious updates, this guide will walk you through the essential steps to create a room, or rooms, that align with your style and values.
Step One: Planning your Room Design
What is the primary purpose of your room? Whether it’s a cozy living room, an efficient home office, or a tranquil bedroom. By defining your room’s purpose, you’ll guide your design decisions.
Who will be using this space? Is it a room for the whole family to share? Is it a room for entertaining guests and visitors? Is it a room for young children? What do the people using this room want to achieve? A cosy space to relax or a space for children to move around freely for example. Answering these questions will help you to meet the needs of those using the room and to find solutions to any potential problems.
How would you define the mood of your room? Do you want to create a room that is calm and relaxing or a warm and welcoming space? Or perhaps a vibrant and dynamic room?
Define the design style for your room. Do you prefer contemporary, or Scandinavian? Or maybe glam or traditional? There are many design styles out there and deciding on which you prefer will help you decide on colours, shapes and textures within the room. See my earlier blog post on design styles here.
Be inspired: For me, this is the fun part! Here is where you begin gathering inspiration with a sustainable twist. Explore design magazines, websites, and social media platforms like Pinterest, Houzz, and Instagram to discover eco-conscious design ideas. Look for inspiration that incorporates recycled materials, upcycled furniture, and sustainable decor.
Visiting model homes, showrooms, and secondhand stores can provide tactile experiences that align with sustainability. It’s an opportunity to find pre-loved furniture and decor items that reduce waste and promote resourcefulness. Additionally, seek inspiration from nature, art, and your travels, focusing on elements that celebrate the beauty of our planet.
Step Two: Assessing Your Space
Before selecting eco-friendly materials and products, take the time to assess your room. Measure its dimensions accurately, including length, width, and height. These measurements will guide your choices when selecting appropriately sized, sustainable furniture and decor.
Identify architectural features in your space, such as windows, doors, and structural elements. These features impact your design choices and can guide placement decisions. Also, consider the natural lighting and ventilation options, as maximizing natural light and airflow aligns with sustainable practices.
Create a floor plan and a mood board. Once you have established your style and decided on which elements you want to combine, then it’s time to create an eco-conscious floor plan and a mood board. Choose a furniture layout that maximizes space and flow while keeping sustainability in focus. Consider how you can arrange furniture to reduce energy consumption and optimize natural light. Place samples of the textures and shapes on your mood board.
Step Three: Arranging and Styling
Arranging furniture and styling your room sustainably can be achieved with a few conscious decisions. Create focal points within the room using sustainable elements, such as a reclaimed wood coffee table or a piece of art made from recycled materials.
Choose color schemes and textures with sustainability in mind. When choosing a color palette, consider low-VOC or VOC-free paints that are better for indoor air quality. Opt for eco-friendly paint brands that prioritize responsible manufacturing and packaging.
Accessorize with sustainable decor by selecting materials that have a minimal environmental impact. Look for textiles made from organic or recycled fibers such as organic cotton throw pillows, bamboo rugs. Experiment with natural textures like bamboo, cork, or reclaimed wood for flooring and decor. Select energy-efficient lighting for your room too. Sustainable design isn’t just about aesthetics; it’s about making ethical choices that have a positive impact on our planet.
Adding personal touches can be eco-friendly too. Incorporate personal items, heirlooms, or upcycled decor to tell your unique story. By repurposing items you already own or breathing new life into old pieces, you reduce waste and contribute to a sustainable room design.
Customizing decor items can also be sustainable. For example, create custom artwork using reclaimed materials or choose decor pieces crafted by local artisans.
Incorporating sustainability into your room design isn’t just about aesthetics; it’s about practicality too. Maximize storage space with eco-friendly storage solutions made from sustainable materials. Consider multi functional furniture that serves multiple purposes, reducing the need for excess pieces.
Think about long-term maintenance and cleaning. Sustainable choices often require less maintenance and are built to last. Look for materials and finishes that are easy to clean and maintain, ensuring your room remains eco-friendly in the long run.
Designing your room sustainably is a fulfilling way to create a space that reflects your style while minimizing your environmental footprint. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you’ll be well-prepared to embark on a sustainable room design journey that benefits both you and our planet.
I would love to hear how your design projects are going. If you have any comments or questions related to this post then please comment below.