Adapting to the changing times

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Abhishek Chadha talks about framing a balance in interior designing elements in the post-pandemic world

The pandemic has led to an upheaval in the lives of many individuals and has taken a toll on countless business endeavours. Small family-run businesses and firms are encountering harvest hits with a drastic decrease in profits due to the global recession. To strike a balance between surviving a pandemic and being successful, companies make different accounts for demonstrable skills. The flare-up of the virus and the accompanying lockdowns halted and postponed immeasurable work and came as a test for many enterprises. During these trying times, it is the need of the hour for leaders to step up and redefine the basic meaning of being a “professional” in a struggling industry. The lockdown has elicited numerous negative emotions in the hearts of the citizens due to the unravelling of a new reality that has entered the shared narrative for one and all. Since people are bound to stay at home, every individual is trying to evaluate their new normal today. The pandemic has reinforced the need for open or outdoor-like spaces and substantial technological interventions. However, people today are also enthused with the outdoor amenities they have been missing the most during this lockdown period. The future has become a fertile ground for high-end luxury residential designers. It’s time to refurbish basements and rooftops to induce breathtaking views from the comfort of your premises. Therefore, architects are experimenting with various permutations and combinations to form a balance in design where they are working towards incorporating these amenities and therapeutic living together.

Better safe than sorry

The thing we need to prioritise while planning homes is the responsiveness and adaptability of the living spaces. Gaining significance, outdoor spaces have become extremely essential for much needed recreational time. These spaces include patios, galleries, and porches. Outdoor spaces are a boon in urban areas. Such spaces give a family, or individuals, quality time for themselves, allowing a more peaceful home environment. Spaces that are outside and have seating areas give much-needed reprieve to residents. The seating areas are present in the form of lounges and swings.

Social-distancing is crucial if one wishes to socialise during or post-pandemic. Therefore, all the spaces designed in the post-Covid world must acquire an abundance of space for people to mingle while being at a safe distance from each other. Since the pandemic has forced people to stay indoors, the kitchen has become a focal facet of the house. To cater to high-demand functionality, pantry sizes are increasing which are also equipped with extra storage space.

Working from home — the new normal

As the proportion of work from home (WFH) cases increase, whimsical and creative spaces meant for fun and relaxation are being incorporated to coexist with other informal areas of the house. New interior design models are being made flexible to cater to a better WFH culture. Provision of ample storage spaces and shelves are being included for unrestricted movement. Composing neutral, minimalistic aesthetics with ample sunlight, uncluttered desks, refreshing colours and comfortable furniture to offer an ideal home-office environment is now slowly becoming a norm. Creating a working nook with open shelves makes for an organised filing system, giving a well-assembled structure to the workspace. Home office setups are being designed to cater to a comfortable working environment while complementing the client’s preferences.

Need of the hour — better post-covid designs

In order to ensure minimum contact, there has been an increased focus on home automation systems lately. Including no-touch doors, smart lights, the intelligent home structure has improved home efficiency while providing maximum comfort and productivity. The pandemic has proven that spaces need to be thought of beyond the usual vision. New employment of blending modern technology with traditional practices has come to light. Copper is being revisited on surfaces as it is proven to kill bacteria. Using features such as dust treatment systems and antibacterial finishes have come to be in demand today.

Staying at home has made everyone revisit their real needs and creating multifaceted, secure spaces has become a new design necessity, not just a trend, for a safer environment for all generations. This pandemic has made people take a step back and fix their immediate environment while modifying it for comfort and peace. At the end of the day, we all want to return to a feeling of relaxation, mentally, emotionally, and physically and our homes provide just that, in addition to being a portrayal of one’s lifestyle.

(The author is the founder and CEO of The KariGhars, an interior designing firm based in Bangalore.)

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