The latest collection from artist Pernille Folcarelli is yet another tribute to nature and its diversity, poetry, majesty, and how very important tapping into nature is during today’s uncertain times. Her feminine, poetic, and soft style is just lovely and I’m excited to show you some of her new work today. But there’s more. I want to talk about the Calm Comfort interior trend and what the “new normal” means to me today.
We have two major spaces to roam freely at the moment – our home and in nature. We can only turn to these spots for comfort and peace without feeling fear or worry about catching this terrible virus. Nature gives us a wonderful refuge, space to be far removed from current concerns, to immerse ourselves in almost alternate universe that feels pure and innocent again. Magical even.
The tranquility derived from the natural world influences our overall health and well-being. This is because it centers and grounds us but also brings us back to one simple fact: life is precious and also, short. We have to value every moment.
Nature has been drawing in and guiding artists and creative types for centuries and they have either directly, or indirectly, worked to translate what they see and feel to their creative endeavors and projects. During a hardship, whether personal or external, creatives seem to gather the most inspiration from a quiet birch forest or the sound of huge waves pounding rhythmically upon the shore.
We turn to nature when we’re trying to make sense of things.
Many of us have a favorite, special spot outside to sit and think when times are rough, don’t we? Nature makes us feel safe like a parental hug, giving loving reassurance that everything wrong will be right again. It seems to whisper in our ears, “Trust yourself more. You already have what you need inside of you”.
If you’re working in the design industry like me, you must notice consumer behavior shifting towards enhancing the home more than ever before. Many are using this “shelter at home” period to paint and renovate, work on the yard, plant a garden, tidy up the balcony… We all want to beautify our very special home-worlds. We seek comfort from home, and want our space to support our needs, our well-being, and to meet our personal desires. No longer can we run to the gym or spa to exercise, get a massage, or have a facial. We are forced to look honestly at our homes and think, “How can I do these things here instead?”. This is part of the new normal. We consider things a little differently now, like why not carve out a space for a small yoga studio or create a tranquility zone for self-care at home with a comfortable chair in the sunshine? Who knows when we can do all of these things again publicly – manicures, spa treatments, personal trainers, yoga classes with our friends. And even when we can, will we want to put our money and time into the “old ways” exactly as they were if, in the meantime, we innovated and developed equally relaxing and nice “new” ways through our homes?
Maybe the new normal won’t be large public indoor spaces for working out, but rather smaller studios scattered throughout the city where relationships can be more personal and time spent can feel more of value. Then, there is also accountability, something we sort of lost in the pre-corona days when hookups, ghosting, texting back a week later, skipping appointments for no real reason, when accountability and intimacy were becoming almost valued antiques instead of everyday possessions.
And honestly, who really uses their gym membership regularly anyway? Sure, there are those burst moments (pre-wedding, pre-high school reunion, pre-bikini season) but I read only about 40% of people who buy a membership actually go regularly (meaning at least 1x a week). What does this tell us? Maybe we need to develop gyms post-corona that people want to go to because they feel more special, they are smaller, more personalized? If gyms are just massive and unwelcoming, where you are just another sweaty butt on a bike, why not just work out at home with Skillbeast, Joe Wicks on YouTube, or Tracy Anderson?
And back to home, in these times, we aren’t simply “passing through” each day as we may have once been, are we? Before corona, most of us didn’t spend a full weekend at home playing cards or planting our balcony garden without also running back and forth to stores, taking the kids to see their friends, entertaining friends in the garden, grabbing a coffee or meal at our favorite cafe. Our lives were spinning and time was running faster because of it. And our home, the very nucleus of our life, was sorta screaming, “Notice me!!!!”.
In times of solitude, we often see what matters but also learn what doesn’t. In the home, personally, I’ve learned that what matters to me is having less around so there is more freedom and space for ideas to flow. I have decided to pull back and get rid of more than ever before and simplify my life. I’ve also added more plants to make the air quality better in my home and also, adding them inside gives me a sense of harmony and peace. I am crafting and making again. Healthy food is high on my daily goals – I’ve not touched alcohol or sweets in weeks and plan to avoid it as a coping mechanism at all costs – something I actually started to use to cope with corona lockdown during the first four weeks. Exercising daily is key for me.
I don’t know about you (please share!) but balance is back in my life and career and it feels good. I don’t want the “old” life back. I want a different “new”. I don’t want to go back to the way things were. To times when the home was a spot for sleep, showering, and a quick meal. I want my home to become the center of my life and everything I do – travel, career, shopping, comes next. I want my home, my family, my son to be first. Always, not just during corona.
So back to the lovely Pernille who just released a new collection called POETRY OF NATURE. It’s based on nature, prints that are poetic, soft, and bring the outdoor world inside. In some of her work, while printing, she let the natural colors from the plants bleed into the paper, leaving a sensuous and artistic expression to the print. I think it’s just lovely.
“This season, I believe in golden, dusty, dried colors combined with wooden furnishings, handmade ceramics, and simple straw and grass decorations. Basic, quiet spaces with harmonious, toned-down colors and space for simple personal statements”, she says.
“This season, I believe in golden, dusty, dried colors combined with wooden furnishings, handmade ceramics, and simple straw and grass decorations. Basic, quiet spaces with harmonious, toned-down colors and space for simple personal statements.”
— PERNILLE FOLCARELLI
Aren’t these lovely? I think so too. About the collection, Pernille explains her inspiration, ”The elegance and grace of straw, a branch, or a leaf reflect nature ́s inherent splendor. A world full of poetic beauty lies right in front of us if we turn our attention to it. My collection of printed plants and grasses captures a moment of nature ́s grace and ornamental characteristics. The colors are dusty and faded like a meadow on a sunny, hazy day”.
You must have a lot of thoughts of your own about the new normal and what it will be, or rather, what you want it to be for you and your home? Would you like to share below in the comments?
(Photography: Pernille Folcarelli)