There are many ways we can make our homes inviting, including colour palettes and furniture choices, but not many people think about scents during the design process. When working with an interior designer, they advise on the whole concept of your home and everything incorporated into it. This blog aims to offer you some of my top scents to make your home inviting.
the importance of scent
Smell is one of our core senses and can directly impact how one thinks, feels, and behaves. When creating a sanctuary, all of the senses need to be taken into consideration as they coincide so closely with one another.
Scent is one of the main senses that has a close link to memory. The part of the brain that is responsible for our emotional reactions and memories has a direct link to the olfactory bulb, the area in which scent is processed in the human brain. An emotional reaction is said to be provoked immediately and at its strongest when we encounter a specific smell.
Smell is highly emotive, which is why we see scents of candles or fragrances being named ‘energy’ ‘relaxation’ or ‘power’ for example. They’re not just extravagant and imaginative names for fragrances – they’re real! Scents can directly encourage an emotion in us.
Scents can bring us as humans discomfort as easily as they can ignite pleasure, that’s why choosing the right scents for your homes is crucial to creating an inviting atmosphere.
scents for your home
There are certain scents to incorporate throughout your home to make it feel cosy and inviting. Making sure to use scents that are pleasurable to you personally is the first place to start.
Scents and smells that are inviting are down to personal preference. Understanding what good memories you have and what scents transport you back there is key when deciding on scents to use around your safe space.
That being said, there are some top scents that you can use around the home that generically, make the space smell inviting.
There is something about vanilla that instantly makes a room feel warm and cosy. Whether its a vanilla-fragranced candle or a DIY room scent made with vanilla beans or extract. This is one scent that most certainly fills the air and makes the room smell welcoming.
One that some people may turn their noses up at. However instilling scents of rosemary, thyme or basil into your home is bound to bring a refreshing and familiar smell. With scents being so closely linked to memory and herbs being predominantly used in cooking, these aromas are likely to make us think of home-cooked meals, creating an inviting atmosphere. Even better if they’re fresh!
Or any tree for that matter. It’s no secret that connecting your home to nature can have beneficial effects on your mental health and physical wellbeing. Instilling scents of nature throughout the home can have the same effect, almost tricking your brain into thinking you are outdoors. Pine in particular is a firm favourite throughout the festive months, bring the outside in, without the chill.
As with furniture choices or colour palettes, each room should ignite a different feeling, the same is to be said for smells! We often refer to the concept of ‘scent scaping’ which describes a journey through scent placement around the home.
Scents that ignite relaxation or pleasure should be used in the bedroom, refreshing scents to inspire productivity can be used in the home office and clean crisp scents are best placed in the bathroom.
This is an especially useful concept for those whose homes are used to work, play and rest! Differentiating each ‘zone’ with a different scent can often ignite different feelings and emotions throughout your home.
Although ultimately, scents come down to personal preference, it is crucial to consider the effects smells will have on making your space feel inviting. Incorporating scents into the early stages of planning, whether you choose to have a ‘signature scent’ throughout the home or scent scape, will allow you to make decisions on how to make the space feel more welcoming.
how i can help…
As a holistic interior designer and someone fuelled by the link design choices have to psychology, I am interested in designing spaces with the consideration of all the five senses and how we can ignite them.
If you want to work with an interior designer who incorporates all elements of the space to bring the best out of you, let me know!