Recently I completed a unique client project that I wanted to share with you all. A lovely woman by the name, Lynn, asked if I can help make her mother’s stay at a private long-term care facility less institutional and more homelike.
Decorating for the aging population comes with its own set of challenges—bridging safety and functionality with style and design. Lynn asked that I work with her mother’s existing furniture and wall colour to create a comfortable environment filled with her personal and familiar possessions.
When decorating, layout should be taken into considered first. There should be ample space for ease of mobility especially when things such as walkers and wheelchairs are a part of daily use. Keep it simple and avoid all tripping hazards such as area rugs and electrical cords.
It’s known that many people associate healing with nature, it’s helpful to create a space that imitates the outdoor environment. This is achieved by adding lots of greenery, natural textures, increase the lighting and decorating with colours such as yellows, blues and greens.
Luckily Lynn’s mother was a crafty women during her lifetime, she had a variety of rug hooking artwork that she created. We incorporated as much of her work as we could and it fit perfectly with the colour scheme we were after.
Familiarity is key so using other momentums from her past also helps to generate memories. Family photos is a great way to add a personalized touch. Creating a gallery wall is an interesting way to evoke meaningful conversion with family and visiting guests.
To help jog memory, a chalkboard is another great way to list things such as the current date, on-duty nurses and any other helpful information for the day. Using a stylish frame can add to the ambiance of the room.
Touch and visibility are huge sensations for the elderly. Using cozy blankets and throws on the chairs and bedding also helps excite the senses and stimulate memories. It’s best to pick accessories that are contrasting in colour.
It was a pleasure helping out this family and creating a thriving environment for years to come. Do you have any decorating tips for loved ones in assisted living? Be sure to share!
If you’re looking for design assistance or advice, be sure to contact me for more info.