Life can be hectic. When you're surrounded by devices, traffic and chatter it can be difficult to find a quiet spot to de-stress.
One place you really should be able to find solace from sound is your home. And while most contemporary townhomes and apartments are built to meet stringent noise guidelines, you can still do more – after all, we all need a little calm to recuperate.
Follow these tips and your home could be a peaceful haven.
Noise bounces off hard surfaces and can make your living room sound like a village hall. The quickest and easiest way to reduce the overall noise in your home is to ensure you have plenty of soft furnishings.
Think cushions, throws and blankets. All of these will soak up noise and dull the sound volumes in your living spaces.
While beautiful timber and polished concrete flooring are stunning in every right, they do nothing to help reduce the noise in your home.
If your floor isn’t carpeted, you need to make friends with rugs. As well as reducing the sound of your own footsteps, every rug you add to your room will reduce the amount of hard surface for sound to bounce off.
Thick wool or cotton rugs work best, or jute if you want something hardwearing and environmentally friendly.
If you can completely carpet your bedroom, this will help create a space that’s not only quiet but kind to your feet on cold winter mornings.
Sound absorbing art
If you’ve seen what the inside of a recording studio looks like, you’ll understand why bare walls are an enemy to quietude. Large areas of bare wall reflect sounds and amplify noise levels.
There are plenty of ways to counteract this. Framed canvas prints work well, or hanging a feature rug. But an even better option is to buy soft, padded prints and wall art designed specifically to absorb sound.
Another solution is to source a decorative fabric to suit your decor, wrap it around a large canvas frame and pad it behind with sheets of foam to make your own sound absorbing piece. Dot a few around your larger wall areas and you’ll definitely hear the difference.
Curtains and drapes
Most homes these days come fitted with blinds rather than curtains. It’s the modern aesthetic – but it does nothing to help create cosy, quiet living spaces.
As well as their ability to maintain an even balance between heat and cold during weather extremes, curtains are great for reducing noise. They can absorb internal noise that would otherwise be bouncing off the walls, and they can muffle external noise when drawn closed.
Just like the carpets, the thicker the curtains, the better. But even adding simple light sheer curtains to a room can make a difference.
Turn down the tech
The more people there are living in a home, the more technology and devices there are creating noise. From smartphones to laptops, all those alerts, whirring fans and general static are doing your state of mind no favours.
Every device makes some kind of noise, and frankly, you should be conserving all the energy you can, so if you’re not using it – switch it off. In particular, your bedroom should ideally be free from anything that makes more noise other than your head hitting the pillow.
And if you happen to be the one causing all the noise, spare those living with you from your loud TV and music by using headphones. Cable-free Bluetooth options are great.