Interior design

same effect could be achieved with the floral display as a wall-mounted feature. If space is tight, you might consider a wall-mounted book stand. Books which face out not only look more appealing but they will spark the interest of a resident. These, too, can be themed: local history, travel, cookery and crafts. Small spaces can also lend

themselves well to simple features such as a row of pegs with hats on or a display of vinyl albums from the 1960s and 1970s. Double-gatefold record sleeves are best since they are so visual, often featuring additional photographs of artists and selected lyrics.

Even without space for furniture, art can provide an incredibly effective way of lifting a corridor area. Well-considered art will elevate a scheme from one that works, to one that truly enriches the lives of residents.

Art is key

Art has a key role to play in making an environment homely and relatable and will help to provide the building with personality and often enable it to stand out from the competition.

For new builds I think this is especially important since art will help to root the building in the local community by establishing links with what was there before, or with what residents will know the area for and have a sense of pride in,

Treating corridor areas as spaces in their own right - spaces which residents can connect and engage with, and spaces which encourage social interaction – is a really important consideration

and therefore be familiar with. In some cases, engaging the wider community with the content and execution of the art can be an advantage, not only by reinforcing those community connections but also by engaging with a group of people who otherwise might not have necessarily welcomed the disruption of a construction site on their door step. While budget of course plays a role, there is so much excellent material to be found on eBay and in charity shops, and art provides a fantastic opportunity to re-use and recycle. At Henley Manor we commissioned Soozi Jenner from Stitch Creative to create some tactile art panels for the sensory lounge for residents living with dementia. Using remnant contract fabrics, Soozi created two stunning pieces of art including features such as removable clouds, trees and boats.

Previously, one of our clients asked us

in to transform one of their residential areas at a new build Middlesex care home into a dementia friendly wing. Pinner Fair has a history dating back to 1336, so we adopted this as a theme for the main lounge.

We again engaged the services of Soozi for this project, asking her to create some colourful bunting using remnants from the upholstery fabrics. Hanging the bunting at two heights so that both mobile residents and those in wheelchairs could interact with it, the bunting leads you from the corridor into the lounge.

Keen to make this as sensory as possible, we used tactile fabrics and of course the anti-microbial properties of the material will help the bunting to withstand regular touching. Plenty of famous people hail from Pinner so we were rather spoilt for choice when it came to notable celebrities. Framed Elton John and Tony Hatch albums feature in one of the corridor areas as well as black and white vintage photographs of Ronnie Barker, and The Shadows.

For a care home client in Colchester, meanwhile, we embraced a cricket theme for their newly refurbished front- of-house communal areas. Comprising two adjoining rooms, we designed one area with a bar/pub feel and the other as a tearoom.

Scouring the internet for Essex County Cricket Club memorabilia that we could put to good use, rewarded us with

Interactive tactile art 36

Bunting • May 2020

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