As the weather warms up, we start planning our adventures outside – walks on the beach, picnics in the fields, hikes through the hills. But, let’s be honest, British weather doesn’t always let our dreams become reality!
Over here at SofaStore we’ve got our fingers and toes crossed for a super sunny summertime, but until then what’s to stop us bringing the outdoors indoors. So, come rain or shine, you can feel connected to nature with our tips and tricks.
1. Woodland on your walls
One of the easiest and most significant ways to introduce the natural world into your home is to quite literally put in on your walls! Go all out with a gorgeous woodland mural to make a real statement – guaranteed to make even the most contemporary of rooms feel like a thoroughly outdoorsy space. If you don’t fancy being quite so dramatic, keep things subtle and sophisticated with this woodland print, or go for something a little more unique – such as this wall hanging. Any avid walkers out there? Take a snap of your favourite woodland scene, and get it printed!
2. Decorate with branches
Branches might not be the most obvious decorative choice, but it’s a really inexpensive and easy way to introduce the natural look to your home. If you find yourself with a free weekend where it happens to be sunny, take the family to your local park! It’s easy to find branches of all sizes, so grab as many as you can carry and get your DIY on. Be sure to give them a clean, and then once they’re fully dry get glamorous with this iced branches DIY – particularly good for any evening events coming up! Alternatively, whip out some gold or silver spray paint and affix the branches against a neutral wall for a seriously cool, contemporary look. Or, if you’re feeling extra crafty, use the smaller branches to create a DIY chandelier, or a super simple necklace organiser for your bedroom. The ultimate rustic chic!
3. Painted rocks
A great one for the kids! Next time you’re and about, get the little ones to keep their eyes peeled for stones and rocks – preferably ones with a flat edge. You can then spend a rainy day decorating these however you see fit! We love Natasha Newton’s painted stones made with white acrylic, which would look lovely displayed in a pastel-hued bowl around your home. Recreate this look during a DIY weekend, or for a more colourful touch dip your cleaned stones into bright paints and display in a vintage mason jar.
Seashells are another inexpensive material that can be really versatile around the home. They’re lovely displayed on their own, either in a bowl or across your windowsills, and are great for adding a simple coastal feel. Alternatively, you could drill small holes in the shells and use a piece of twine to thread them together, forming a great seashell chain which would look lovely tied around your curtain poles or draped across a door frame. But if you’re feeling really ambitious, why not create some beeswax tea lights with your seaside souvenirs?
5. Natural materials
Natural materials have formed the basis of home décor for centuries, so why should the 21st century be any different? Embrace natural fibres in your home – such as wicker, with our guide to woven furniture* link. Another timeless natural material is wool, which has been used in Britain for warmth since long before recorded history. A natural woollen blanket such as this from National Trust will add immediate cosiness to your living room. Another great natural material which looks lovely and stylish is marble. This marble tray in its natural brown colour would be a great addition to your coffee table – especially if you were using it to display natural trinkets like shells and driftwood. For more tips on styling your coffee table, click here.
6. Wooden accessories
Like wool and wicker, wood is a great and versatile way of introducing the natural look in your home. You could invest in solid hardwood furniture, such as this desk or chest of drawers, or take a more subtle approach with wooden accents around the home. Your most precious memories will look beautiful in these rustic wooden reclaimed frames, especially against a neutral backdrop. Alternatively, investing in these three tree trunk tables will ensure your home has the natural, rustic look all year round.
7. Decorating with animals
Faux fur, or other animal based materials, can be a really good way of adding a rustic and natural feel to your living room. Our friends at Oak Furniture Land have put together a guide to decorating with sheepskin here, or you could go for a more alternative look with this luxurious throw in faux deer fur. Faux fur blankets are a great way of adding depth, cosiness and a natural look to your living room all at the same time – especially when draped across our neutral coloured Jasmine sofa.
8. Cabinet of curiosities
The natural world is full of all sorts of little treasures – from pinecones, to leaves, to beautiful pieces of natural glass. You’re bound to have spotted all sorts of weird and wonderful things outside over the years – especially if you’ve got little ones – so why not start using them? In the Renaissance, strange and eclectic objects from people’s travels were displayed around the home in what became known as Cabinets of Curiosity. Create one of these at home with a beautiful display cabinet, filled to the brim with all the beautiful natural objects you’ve collected over the years. It’ll always be a work in progress, so update it with treasures as and when you find them!
Displaying antlers at home has been all the rage for a while now, but they really are a great way to add some serious rustic chic to your living room. And they don’t have to be expensive, let alone real! These white antlers would look beautiful against exposed brick, particularly over a fireplace. Otherwise, mix it up a little with this antler candelabra – a guaranteed talking point for your coffee table!
10. Smells of the forest
Of course, you don’t have to buy new things or go out foraging to bring the outdoors inside. One of the easiest ways to channel the natural world in your living room is simple to smell it! Nothing makes you feel outdoorsy quite like the smell of the woods in summertime, or that brilliant fresh scent of the countryside. Skandinavisk’s ‘Skog’ candle smells of pine, fir and lily of the valley, whilst this soy wax candle smells of berries and bark. With a few woodland scents lit around your living room, displayed on your coffee table or sideboard, you’ll be feeling one with nature in no time. And you don’t even have to leave the house!
Of course, the best way to feel snuggly and cosy whilst bringing the outdoors in is with the right sofa. Our Galloway sofa, with its tartan and stag-printed scatter cushions, wouldn’t look out of place in a rustic log cabin – and is the perfect accompaniment to all your natural DIY creations.