Mindful Design

I have been told by numerous experts that updating our blog every week is a must do to optimize/improve our search engine optimization (SEO).  Now that I am no longer working for Deschutes County, I am in charge of stepping up our marketing efforts.  So here I am writing a blog that I am fairly certain no one will read, but still wanting to make it interesting….just in case…..This week I am abandoning search word criteria and target audiences to write about mindfulness, which is something that I am passionate about. One morning, as I was reading through my Flipboard account looking for topics to write about, I came across the quote below:

Mindfulness Quote

Mindful design can mean a lot of different things.  For me it is taking care of your home space where in return it will take care of you.  Mindfulness means you can engage fully in what you are doing at any moment, and when you are mindful, difficult thoughts and feelings have much less impact and influence over you. Be curious about the underlying thoughts when there is dis-appointment or frustration.  For example, perhaps you are not able to have the exact layout of the dining room, and great room as you had hoped.  You are concerned that there will not be enough room for friends and family to congregate.  Think about the values underlying this desire. Is it really about a bigger great room? Or is it about a more connected family? While being mindful, think about everyone together and whether or not having the exact configuration you had hoped for will prevent togetherness.

Mindful design starts with integrating the land with the architectural design of the home and continues through every phase of construction including tile selections, lighting, plumbing and more.  During the initial design phase it is important to consider natural occurring features of the land to create a home that will be more than just a structure to live in, but a home that nurtures the lives of its inhabitants and its natural surroundings.

I approach home design with thinking about how I want to feel when I walk into or sit in each room?   Will I be in there alone, sharing with one other person or is it a place to gather with friends and family?  How many people use this room at different times?  The answers to those questions help define the space – adding or leaving out walls, windows, built-ins and other design elements.  Do I want morning light or evening light?  How does a big expansive wall feel, should it have a design element to break it up, how do I feel when I look at these color combinations?  Am I energized, relaxed, contemplative.

For instance, we are designing a home that will be for sale in Tetherow and we are working through the design of the master bedroom.  We need to locate it in a certain part of the house to maximize the cascade mountain views it will have, while maintaining the mountain views in the great room.  We want to create enough separation from the two spaces, but maintain the view for both.  When looking at our design options I knew I did not want to see a door from the great room space.  A door felt closed and created a negative and unwelcoming feeling, not the welcoming and warm energy we wish to create.  I believe we were able to create a path from the great room to the master bedroom that maintains the feel and separation we were trying to achieve.

Design can be a fun and creative expression of who you are and what is important to you.  Be open, listen to your gut, be curious about frustrations, and above all have fun!!