Updated: Apr 9, 2020
While waiting for the spread to slow and the curve to flatten, I’ve been pondering how interiors will change post-pandemic. Like most, my world has been turned upside down and shrunken to mere square feet. I’m trying to juggle work, family, emotions, and everyday life as concerns about ventilators, PPE, social distancing and scary statistics mount. Some days are better than others, and I childishly want everything to go back to how it was - whatever “it” is. I recognize that nothing, including interior design, however, will be spared from this wretched virus, but contemplating future trends helps allay my fears. So I hope you enjoy my predictions in this blog post, and please feel free to share your own. Most importantly, be safe and be healthy.
Social distancing concerns will remain paramount after COVID-19, and people will want to design outdoor rooms. These coveted, private spaces will provide treasured opportunities to enjoy a morning cup of coffee, lounge, tend to a garden, grill meals, or play a game of catch isolated from the rest of the world. Demand for outdoor rooms will also spike particularly in suburban and rural areas to reflect an exodus from urban settings. Living too close to or on top of one another will no longer be in vogue.
CLOSED FLOOR PLAN
Separate, closed-off rooms, rather than wide-open floor plans, will increase in popularity. Calls that, “the walls must fall!” will be silenced as people acknowledge that separate spaces provide more privacy, fewer distractions, and better sound barriers than a single, cavernous space. And this will, likewise, encourage the demand for more man caves, she sheds, as well as as “little” versions thereof for kids.
Home will become the new office for many workers. Home offices will shift from makeshift spaces at kitchen tables and in bedrooms to designated rooms. They will be fully functional workspaces, and, in many cases, they will replace the under-utilized dining room.
ENTRY AREAS & MUD ROOMS
These areas will get elaborate upgrades in response to lingering Coronavirus concerns. They will be equipped with decontamination items from hand-sanitizing stations to disinfectant wipes. Additionally, these spaces may include showers, changing areas, and places to store or wash outside clothes and footwear.
HOME GYMS & EXERCISE EQUIPMENT
Exercise makes us feel better, helps manage stress, and boosts the immune system It also staves off feelings of going stir crazy during a quarantine! But since gyms are typically high risk places for the transmission of airborne diseases, home gyms will become a popular alternative. It’s a win-win situation since people will be able to get all the benefits of a gym at home with an app, some equipment and a workout space along with reduced health risks.
PANTRIES & STORAGE SPACES
In times of high anxiety, people like to stockpile items to gain some sort of control over the situation. To prepare themselves for future uncertainties, demand for pantries and other storage spaces will, therefore, increase. People will want a place to store food, supplies, and, of course, toilet paper!
GARDENS & ROOT CELLARS
Fruit and vegetable gardens will become more commonplace as people try to become more food self-sufficient. Root cellars, with constant year-round temperatures, will be an ideal way to store and keep harvests from tomatoes to potatoes fresh for months. Cellars will also be designed as wine rooms or cheese caves to store and age homemade cheese.
Touch-less and hands-free gadgets a la The Jetsons will become commonplace. As a result of the pandemic, people will also demand improved air and water filtrations systems, power alternatives, and improved internet options. Most importantly, these new technologies will have to be mindfully incorporated into interior designs.
I’m sure this list will grow day by day. But, here’s hoping for a speedy end to the Coronavirus with minimal lives lost.