There is a push towards editing our homes in a more simplistic approach, which is why Wabi Sabi seems to be gaining awareness. The blend of ancient traditions is merging to find a place in modern day living and interiors. Which in essence is a forward approach to merge western and eastern ideas and design methods into one.
What is Wabi-Sabi
“Pared down to its barest essence, Wabi-Sabi is the Japanese art of finding beauty in imperfection and profundity in nature, of accepting the natural cycle of growth, decay, and death. It’s simple, slow, and uncluttered-and it reveres authenticity above all. Wabi-Sabi is flea markets, not warehouse stores; aged wood, not Pergo; rice paper, not glass. It celebrates cracks and crevices and all the other marks that time, weather, and loving use leave behind. It reminds us that we are all but transient beings on this planet-that our bodies as well as the material world around us are in the process of returning to the dust from which we came. Through Wabi-Sabi, we learn to embrace liver spots, rust, and frayed edges, and the march of time they represent”.
Emerging from traditional Japanese aesthetics, Wabi-Sabi is a perspective centered on the acceptance of imperfection and authenticity of age. Aesthetically it relates part minimalism as it values simplicity, uncluttered and modest surroundings. Yet its characteristics include symmetry, rough texture, economy and appreciation of ingenuity of natural objects and processes. The key to true Wabi-Sabi is authenticity with the 8 guidelines created below that you are able to implement into your home.
- Natural colour
Drawing inspiration from natures colour palette, visual snapshots of the beach, mountains and forests and dessert are the Wabi-Sabi colours you should incorporate into your space. An array of neutrals, charcoals and grey undertones.
- Natural material
Embracing each day to try and work with natural, honest and raw materials. Consciously leading a less plastic more timber, glass, ceramics, natural stone, marble and concrete.
- Embrace aging
Allowing our stuff to gracefully age and enjoy what you have instead of always bringing in new and improved items. Not making something look worn or aged, not purchasing items that look aged, but rather over time admiring the beauty of our collection of books that have aged over the years, or the natural cracks occurring in your handmade mugs.
- Let it be
If your curtains are puddled against the floor or your linen sofa is wrinkled and worn out a bit that is the process of the aging we discussed. As long as things are fresh and clean, casual and simple, this is a Wabi-Sabi in a modern home. It’s the contrast between living with the refreshed and the perfectly tailored curtains without creases.
Sticks in vases, branches in pots or leaves bulging from a handmade ceramic vase will help bring in the next element of Wabi-Sabi. Incorporating nature brings a sense of calm and softness into the interior. Let things fall naturally and loosely.
Incorporate as much natural light as possible. If there isn’t a lot of light coming, adjust the colour palette of the room, add lighter colours, paint the walls white as it reflects the light into the space and add a sheer curtain as oppose to heavy curtains. Bringing simplicity and lightness into the room.
Curate and collect is essential in the Wabi-Sabi style because it’s a fundamental characteristic of the Japanese’s aesthetic.
Opening out the windows and bringing in various natural scents helps to improve the air circulation in your home allowing from new scents to enter and old ones to exit. To elevate the rooms scent invite natural essential oils to make your home smell wonderful. Opt for organic cleaning products and laundry detergents, your home will smell fresh and eliminate any toxins.
I strongly believe that you should have visually pleasing items that contributes to your overall wellbeing. Even something as simple as a crafted charcoal soap juxtaposed in a handmade ceramic bowl that is visually stimulating and brings calmness and wholeness to a person.
Could you embrace this style into your space? Have you already incorporated it into your space? Or you have mastered your very own version of the Wabi-Sabi in your home. Any of the tips above resonate with you?