What is Naturalist Interior Design?

Naturalist interior design is the practice of incorporating organic materials into spaces, connecting the indoor to the outdoor space.

While natural interior design encompasses using earthy materials, it has many variations. Your naturalist design can look modern, traditional, or rustic, depending on how you go about it and the type of furniture you use.

Naturalist Interior Design, Explained

Naturalist design

Rather than an interior design style dictated by rules, natural interior design means using raw materials as much as possible. Naturalist elements appear in many styles, including Scandinavian, Scandifornian, Southwestern, Farmhouse, and Desert.

Naturalist interior design dates back to when the first people built their homes using local supplies. Indigenous people and early settlers would craft houses out of logs or clay, depending on the area.

After the start of the industrial revolution, builders used mass-manufactured materials and furnishings to construct homes, straying away from natural wood, stone, and clay. Today, many homeowners wish to return to the beauty and quality of raw materials, sparking an interest in nature-inspired interior design.

Biophilic Interior Design vs. Naturalist Interior Design

Biophilic interior design incorporates nature into a home, which falls under naturalistic interior design. Biophilic designs are often elaborate, dedicating entire rooms to plants, installing wall-length windows and skylights, and decorating with nature-inspired colors.

How to Incorporate Natural Decor Into Your home

If you want a biophilic or naturalistic interior design style, here’s the natural decor to incorporate into your home.

Use Natural Materials for Furnishings, Finishes, and Accessories

Rather than using manufactured or plastic materials, focus on organic items. These nature-inspired materials will connect the space with the outdoors and add texture to your room. 

Here are the top natural materials to bring into your home for sustainable interior design:

  • Wood or stone floors
  • Wood cabinets, tables, ceiling beams
  • Cotton, linen, and leather sofas
  • Stone countertops
  • Jute
  • Wicker
  • Rattan

Add Lots of Plants

There’s no bigger hallmark of natural decor than plants. While some people are fortunate to have grow rooms dedicated to plants, you don’t have to go that far. Start with some easy-to-grow greenery and add more as your skill levels increase.

Maximize Natural Light

House your windows with light-colored curtains and bamboo shades. When possible, keep your blinds open to let natural light flood your space. If you’re considering remodeling your home, add large windows or skylights to maximize natural light.

Decorate Your Home with Earth Inspired Colors

Use the color palette from your surrounding environment to decorate your house. Depending on where you live, these hues may change. For example, consider blues, whites, and grays if you live in a coastal home. If you live in the desert, sand, rust, and cactus green are excellent options.

Hang Nature-Inspired Art

Consider large nature prints. You can opt for photographs that encompass areas around you or feature beautiful scenes from many locations.

Examples of Natural Interior Design

A natural home decor style features a sustainable interior design and brings the outdoors in. Here are some examples of nature-inspired interior design.

Modern Nature-Inspired Kitchen

Nature inspired kitchen decor
Applegate Tran Interiors

Nature-inspired designs can take on many styles, like this modern kitchen. The designer chose a wood cabinet, stone countertop, wood ceiling beams, and natural light. The building elements are sustainable and long-lasting.

Sustainable Living Room Design

Sustainable Living Room Design
Linden L.A.N.D. Group

The owners of this home chose natural resources for their living room design, including local birch wood floors, local granite for the fireplace, a reclaimed wood table, and a reclaimed mantle. They also opted for plants and lots of natural light for an earthy space.

Modern Garden Bathroom

Modern Garden Bathroom
Elnaz Irby Design

The views in this garden bathroom highlight the landscaping outside and fill the room with natural light. The color palette is light and airy with stone accents.

Decorating with Plants – Living Wall

Naturalist design

Decorating with plants is a primary strategy in naturalistic design. If you like elaborate decor, this living plant wall might suit you.