While interior design has traditionally played a key role in settings such as hotels, homes as well as food and beverage outlets, educational centres and indeed schools have generally been more conservative. Whilst owners of kindergartens and preschools may favour bright primary colour palettes, interior designers themselves may prefer more adult like designs and materials.
At The Schooling Society, the challenge was to merge an interior design that pleases us yet, at the same time, have a fun and quirky appeal that appeals to both parents and students.
Environmental Psychology: How Design Affects Us
We placed a great deal of emphasis on our interior design for a reason – our surroundings affect our mood, our thoughts and invariably, our health. Psychologists have long recognised the importance of environmental psychology. Study after study has revealed that factors such as lighting, the use of space and plants all affect how we feel about ourselves and the place we spend time at.
A very big theme at TSS is that of nature. We believe that nature has a calming effect on the mind as well as our spirit. As such, our first task was to find a beautiful and unique flooring that is natural. We love marble. For its sheen, its organic occurrence and its sheer unpredictability. Since it is a natural earth formation, no other piece of marble will look exactly like another.
Factory after factory, we went in search of marble slabs that were raw yet alive. Since marble is a totally natural material that’s extracted from the earth, it was a challenge to find slabs that when put together, would give us a natural and complete picture.
After the large marble slabs were selected, piece by piece, they had to mechanically hauled. Large slabs were placed side by side in order to find those few where the grain of the marble would merge seamlessly. Once this was done, they had to be marked out to be cut into rectangular pieces. These pieces were then laid on the ground. In the marble installation industry, this is known as the ‘dry lay’. Each piece had to be labelled clearly so that when it was time to install them on site, the workers would know how each piece fits in with another piece.. just like how we would do a jigsaw puzzle.
As you can see, the end result was quite worth the effort.