This is another great interiors book to sit down with and get inspired by! Obviously over the yearsI have set some kind of standard that I should be gifted interior design books for Christmas because this book too was a gift from last Christmas.
The Kinfolk Home
Interiors For Slow Living
By Nathan Williams
The thing that I love most of about this book is the idea behind ‘slow living.’ If you aren’t familiar with the term it is similar to slow food, or slow money. The idea being that we all seem to be living our lives at an extreme place always racing on to the next thing keeping way too busy and we are missing out on all the small things, we aren’t enjoying our lives anymore. This is totally where i should be adding in ‘YOLO’ – you only live once, right? Anyway, slow living is about taking a few steps back and starting to soak in and really enjoy life more well, slowly. Start to absorb and consider how we connect with others, places that surround us and of course ourselves and what all of these things actually mean to us.
People often think that the term ‘slow living’ means to stop using things that are distracting or disconnecting like mobile phones or the internet or falling into consumerism. But, we really just need to think about the way in which we use / do those things and decide if what you are gaining from them is beneficial. For example, using the internet to Skype your mum who lives in another country? = very beneficial. Using your mobile phone to tag your flatmate who is sitting right next to you in meaningless posts on Facebook = not beneficial. Get off your phone, come on people live a little!
So this book helps translate ‘slow living’ into our interiors – kind of like ‘slow interiors’ maybe? Anyway, on the inside of the cover this book explains ‘The spaces we inhabit play an integral role in our lives, and a thoughtfully designed home provides a place to express ourselves, to rest and to foster our relationships. The diverse homes featured in this book reflect some of the key principles of slow living, such as cultivating community, simplifying our lives and reclaiming our leisure times’ This is music to my ears – what’s the point in re-writing it when they have said to so perfectly? Haha 🙂
I have taken some photos of pages in the book which i think really communicate the idea and as well as they just look down right awesome basically. So, here we go…
Pages 30 & 31 – open plan living executed perfectly. The indoor outdoor flow is enhanced by the beautiful collection of neutral and natural colours introduced in the interiors and those that naturally appear and compliment outside. It’s easily seen how this space would help the user relax, take time out and regain energy and life for themselves in this peaceful, calm and tranquil space.
Pages 54 & 55 – an extremely inviting outdoor area. I totally envy and want to recreate something like this at my own home. This space has a similar vibe to the photo above in that it shows a lot of natural colour tone and materials. The collection of woods brings a very earthy presence to this area and although you are surrounded by strong white walls you don’t feel like you’re sitting in some outdoor box on display. The space is calming and relaxed and the mix of wooden materials helps it feel warm. A perfect spot to enjoy with friends and family intimately and individually to bring you back to your core.
Page 96 – the perfect little collection of pieces. I chose this page to talk more about the objects in a space rather than the space as whole. In terms of slow living this speaks to me more about consumerism and having too much with nothing of real importance. Small displays like this are something I feel reflect someone’s individual personality within a home. Displaying small collections of bits and bobs that have real meaning will help you hone in on the things that are really not necessary in life and the things you can’t live without. This little space seems to be a small nook in a room which holds knowledge in magazines, life in flowers and character in eclectic pieces of furniture. It’s almost like an abstract portrait of the person who lives here.
Pages 132 & 133 – this is a real living room. This room has a great sense of welcoming. It’s got the raw elements, the plush, the natural and a real sense of life. The perfect space for entertaining groups of people because of its size (obviously) but also because of its sense of openness. Everything seems to be on such a large scale, the high ceilings, the large windows, even the sofas and armchairs seem large. The colours again help this space feel relaxed, warm and neutral. I could reconnect with myself, with others and with life in this room.
So, I don’t really know how well i’ve done in explaining the ideas around ‘slow living’ or even how this book connects with that idea but I guess it’s all a start and you take from something only as much as you can or as much as you wish to.
If it helps, for me the first time I stumbled across this book I was intrigued alone in the words ‘interiors for slow living’ printed on the front page. I’ve always considered myself a bold and confusing person when it comes to my personal interiors so this term really stood out for me. If i’m honest I haven’t read the entire book word for word front to back but I don’t think it’s that kind of book. I will continue to learn from its pages each and every time I pick it up and something different will stand out to me each time depending on the day it is, or how i might be feeling. I think it will be an everlasting inspiration.
Slow living to me is about really sitting back and thinking about who you are, what you are and even why. It’s about reconnecting with everything in all forms but in your own way. Do it your own way, personalise it and personalise your surrounding interiors to help you feel all the above in the best way possible.
Please if you have any advice or ideas let me know by leaving a comment below or emailing me on firstname.lastname@example.org 🙂
You can check the book out here