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Spring Forward! Design Ideas to Bring the Outdoors In

As the refreshing spring breeze begins to fill the air and daylight starts to linger just a bit longer, we feel an innate urge to welcome natural light back into our homes and rekindle our connection to nature within our indoor sanctuaries. At Asha Maía Design, we put a significant emphasis on natural light and how it impacts our well-being. Not only are we passionate about harnessing the power of good lighting, but we are also passionate about infusing the essence of nature into the spaces we design.

As spring begins to set in, we'll explore the key elements essential to maximizing the longer days, which means more daylight and that overall sense of renewal in your home... natural light, plants & florals, and other natural details. Join us as we delve into the transformative power of these elements, guiding you toward a home that not only looks stunning but also nurtures your mind, body, and soul.


Natural Light

Much like a cup of coffee, sunlight can be a great way to wake up your body, boost serotonin, and put you in the mood to conquer the day. Natural light not only makes our homes look that much more beautiful but it is also so good for our mental health and well-being. When we begin a new project, we take note of the layout, the placement of windows, as well as the direction of sunlight in the home's main living areas. In new-build homes, where we are involved from the inception, we evaluate the direction the home is facing, recommend tweaks to that if possible, and oftentimes recommend the strategic placement of additional windows or doors to maximize the natural light in the home.

The consideration of natural light is a key component in our design approach, as it shapes the color palette, accents, and arrangements we select. The interplay of lighting can significantly alter the perception of color within a space. This is evident in how a paint sample might appear vastly different under store fluorescent lighting compared to its appearance in the actual living space where it will ultimately live. Let's shed some light on some of the amazing benefits of natural light and how to make the most of it in the home!  

Strategically place windows when building a home

For those embarking on the journey of designing a new-build home, it is paramount to collaborate closely with your architect to incorporate expansive and strategically placed windows in both the main living areas and bedrooms. Ideally placed windows can not only fill your living spaces with natural light but also offer breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape, seamlessly merging the indoors with the beauty of the outdoors.

Often, we aren't in control of which way our homes face or the placement of windows within them. In cases like this, there are certain things we can add to the space or consider in order to make the most of the available natural light.

Selecting the right paint colors

People often underestimate how much paint colors can impact how a room feels and how the natural light behaves in the space. When natural light is low, it's important to select paint colors that have high reflectance values if your goal is to make the room feel brighter. If the room is north-facing, the natural light will feel cool and dark if the room is north-facing. In spaces like this, selecting a warmer paint color will balance the room, making it feel more inviting. The use and goals of a space are truly important to consider when selecting paint colors. But that's just the beginning.

Reflecting light with mirrors

In spaces that may lack natural light, we can duplicate the sunlight pouring into your space by strategically placing mirrors opposite windows. This allows the light from the window to reflect around the room, almost acting as an additional window or light source.

Choosing the right window treatments

Choosing the right window treatments is pivotal, as they serve as the gatekeepers of natural light in the home. For optimal illumination, choose sheer or light-filtering curtains and blinds. These create a welcoming diffused light ambiance, simultaneously providing privacy and ensuring that your room isn't cloaked in unnecessary darkness due to the light being absorbed by heavy drapery fabric.

shop our natural light enhancing favs

House Plants

Beyond simply bringing a natural charm and vitality to any room, plants hold a magical quality that goes beyond their beauty. They possess the remarkable ability to purify the air we breathe, transforming carbon dioxide into life-giving oxygen. They act as silent guardians, filtering out harmful chemicals emitted by everyday appliances like microwaves, TVs, and screens, leaving behind a sanctuary of fresh, clean air. But their benefits don't end there. Studies show that plants and florals have a soothing influence on our spirit; the mere presence of plants within our space creates a calmness within us and can even sharpen our senses. I don't know about you, but can't you just feel the energy that a live plant gives off? It makes the home feel much more vibrant and alive. 


In essence, welcoming plants into the home isn't just a decorative choice; it's a harmonious embrace of nature's healing touch, offering a sanctuary of serenity and vitality for both heart and home.

We love placing potted plants in our spaces as an alternative focal point. A corner just off the main seating area, at the end of a line of kitchen cabinets, or even a small potted jade plant on the coffee table.

Here are some of our favorite plants we love to incorporate into our projects:

  • Fiddle-leaf fig trees hold a special place in our hearts for their striking aesthetic appeal, featuring slender trunks adorned with lush, shapely leaves. Placing them in any corner of a living room instantly creates a delightful focal point, infusing the space with a sense of joy and vitality. With proper care, these timeless beauties can thrive and grace your home for many years to come.

  • Olive trees are entirely majestic with their luscious, leathery leaves, which boast a rich, dark green hue on top and a shimmering silver underside. A potted olive tree instantly elevates any space, transforming it into a sophisticated oasis that breathes life and a touch of the Mediterranean into your home. With proper care, these ancient beauties can become cherished companions, gracing your living space for generations to come.

  • The ZZ plant is an excellent choice for beginners looking to get started with owning plants. Requiring minimal care and less water, it thrives in low-light conditions and adapts well to any space. With its small, glossy leaves and effortless maintenance, the ZZ plant has become a beloved staple that we love to use in our homes and office spaces.

  • Snake plants are renowned for their air-purifying prowess, making them a practical choice for any space. Their ability to thrive in low-light environments renders them perfect for brightening up even the dimmest corners of your home. We love to place these in bedrooms, as they are known for encouraging a peaceful night's rest.

  • Spider plants are cherished for their elegant, cascading foliage, making them a delightful addition to any indoor space. Not only are their tall leaves visually appealing, but they also act as natural air purifiers, helping to improve indoor air quality. Additionally, spider plants are non-toxic to pets, making them a safe and popular choice for households with furry companions. Their resilience and ease of care make them perfect for both beginner and experienced plant enthusiasts alike.

  • Herbs are like nature's aromatic palette, infusing the kitchen with their delightful scents and enhancing the beauty of cooking. As their fragrant leaves are chopped and sprinkled into dishes, they release bursts of fresh aroma, transforming ordinary meals into culinary masterpieces. Whether it's the earthy notes of rosemary, the citrusy zing of basil, or the peppery warmth of thyme, herbs add depth and character to every dish, tantalizing the senses and elevating the cooking experience as well as acting as a beautifully aesthetic addition to any kitchen.

  • Succulents are effortlessly low-maintenance and ideal for adorning shelves or tables where visibility is key. With their diverse array of shapes and colors, they effortlessly enhance any space. Perfect for introducing a splash of greenery without any fuss.

shop some of our house plant favs 

Earth Tones & Natural Elements


At Asha Maía Design, our appreciation for the beauty of nature extends to our preference for incorporating natural materials that evoke the essence of the earth and its elements. We love incorporating furniture pieces crafted from natural stone or natural wood, like coffee tables and other accent tables. The timeless elegance and organic charm that exude from pieces like this are unmatched. Concrete planters and accessories add a touch of industrial chic while grounding spaces with their raw, tactile appeal. Our design style embraces color tones and textures that mirror natural elements, such as limewash, plaster detailing, and grasscloth wallpaper, infusing our interiors with a sense of warmth and authenticity. We love exploring organic shapes and textures, seamlessly blending the old with the new to create spaces that feel both familiar and fresh. In each project, we strive to transform spaces into havens that invite harmony and balance—using texture and pattern and combining old with new, mimicking the juxtaposition witnessed between nature and our modern world. 

shop some of our nature-inspired furniture favs 

Embracing natural light, greenery, and other natural elements isn't merely an aesthetic choice; it's a way to connect with the restorative power of nature and nurture our well-being. By strategically incorporating these elements, we can create homes that are not only beautiful but also uplifting, serene, and filled with a sense of revitalization. Realizing how much our homes impact our daily lives is truly why we do what we do here at Asha Maia Design. So, as spring unfolds, let's open our windows, welcome the sunshine, and celebrate the transformative power of nature within our living spaces.

In what ways do you embrace nature and natural light in your home? Let us know in the comments!

Interior Designer Serving Alexandria, Virginia; Arlington, Virginia; Chevy Chase, Maryland; Bethesda, Maryland; Potomac, Maryland; North Arlington, Virginia; Mclean, Virginia; Washington, DC; Falls Church, Virginia; Great Falls, Virginia; Vienna, Virginia, Fairfax, Virginia


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