Bristol based Amy Walden is an interior designer who takes a holistic approach to making homes. The aim she tells Euronews Culture is to create a space that provides both comfort and wellbeing.
For nearly eight years, Amy Walden's been living in Bristol, in the South West of England, with a single-minded approach to transform homes into healthier, happier spaces that are connected to nature. A philosophy that extends to her own house.
Amy uses natural materials and fibres including wood, ceramic, rattan, and glass in the majority of her designs. The reason? She believes they “reduce aspects of sick building syndrome that can lead to health issues. Natural materials are so timeless. They age gracefully, developing a lovely patina over age”.
In her own home, she also chooses to use cleaning products purported to help improve air quality and makes sure that the orientation of each room benefits as much as possible from natural light and ventilation.
The layout, Amy explains, is designed to benefit from natural light and ventilation, and to reduce the potentially damaging effects of geopathic stress and EMF disturbances, with a focus on feng shui and allowing positive energy - or chi - to flow throughout.
While Amy is inspired by Scandinavian and Japanese styles, she enjoys adding more colour joyful aspects to her design.
She’s also a great appreciator of the Japanese view of Wabi-Sabi, where perfection is only achieved through imperfection. To that end, she mostly chooses to use hand-crafted furniture and artwork, ensuring that each piece is special and unique.
“As a designer, I always crave change and innovation, as well as stability and grounding”, she says, “I have created a home akin to a gallery space, where the walls are mainly white and the floors wooden throughout”. Amy adds colour through artwork, accessories and furniture, all ethically and sustainably sourced.
At the heart of Amy’s home, she says, is comfort. “There’s no standing on ceremony here”, she explains, “it’s somewhere for us all to relax and feel at home. That’s really important”.
She also advises “adding soul” to transform a house into a home and says it’s important to “create a space that feels like you. Somewhere that represents your personality, values, sense of humour, lifestyle and outlook on life”.
And if you want to recreate Amy’s holistic approach to decor? Stay away from trends. The designer advises the latest thing is not always the best thing and instead suggests that fans of her style “think deeply about the things that matter most and to buy sustainability where possible”.
Amy also says vintage is the way to go: “Often vintage or second hand pieces are so much better made and you’ll see they were built to last. The added bonus is that you end up with something unique which reflects your personality and style”.