Author, artist, designer, and full-time plant mom Justina Blakeney coined the term, “jungalow,” by blending the words “jungle” and “bungalow” to describe her wild interior design style, and the trend is spreading like wildfire.
Everyone is craving jungalow vibes these days, and it’s easy to see why: When done right, the look is cute, chic, and homey all at the same time.
There are actually scientific reasons for the appeal — plants in our homes can raise our moods, improve air quality and lead to better overall health. Looking at greenery is good for our brains, but if there’s too much it can start to feel like a clutter-filled jungle nightmare instead of an adorable oasis.
So how can you pull it off and, as Blakeney says, come home to good vibes?
1. Buy Some Plants (Baby Steps, Right?)
Assuming you’re totally new to this, it can be difficult to care for a variety of plants with varying needs right off the bat. We’re not recommending hauling a slew of plants into your apartment you so can live in an Instagram-worthy bedroom for a week. The goal is a sustainable space that feels full of life!
Your best bet is to begin with a few plants that are relatively easy to maintain. Our top choices include:
Surprise! Succulents are amazing. (JK, we knew that already).
What we didn’t know is that they require very little care — i.e. they need minimal water and can thrive in varying degrees of sunlight — and easily brighten up a room.
Exotic looking and low-maintenance, aloe vera is a great indoor plant. Just place in a sunny corner of your home and water infrequently (rule of thumb: once per week in the summer, twice per week in the winter).
If you’re really worried about being a new plant parent, Zamioculcas Zamiifolia’s (or ZZ plants) are among the most indestructible plants out there. They can tolerate low light and will likely survive if you forget to water them for a bit, but try to aim for a weekly watering. Pothos plants are also super easy to maintain.
2. Get Hanging
Greenery hanging from the ceiling and walls is a great touch, and just one or two plants can make a big difference in a room. This is ideal for city dwellers, too, because hanging plants bring warmth without taking up space. (They also keep plants away from any fur babies that might be walking around.)
Simple ways to get started:
- Use a tension rod to hang multiple plants.
- Repurpose a coat rack as a plant rack.
- Swag hook + adjustable hanging chain.
- Bookshelf – books + plants.
One caveat on swag hooks: know the maximum weight! Every swag hook is rated for a different weight, so be sure to check and don’t hang anything near the max weight to avoid the hook ripping free from the ceiling.
3. Go Wild
The Jungalow look isn’t just about greenery. It’s about embracing a bold, bohemian style, indulging in bright colors, and getting a little wild.
This aesthetic can mean a bunch of things, from not being afraid to break out a funky patterned rug to switching from white to bright colored linens and blankets. At the heart of it, the look is all about creativity, so try out different options you might ordinarily shy away from.
Keep in mind that the traditional approach is not the only approach. For instance, a second bedroom doesn’t have to be a bedroom. Maybe you rarely have guests, and the couch works just fine.
Would you rather use that room as a mini library or a writing sanctuary? Then do it!
Is there an extra closet that could be used as a laundry area or a little den for your pet? Go for it.
4. Artfully Accessorize
Finally, artfully accessorize your space by making use of the interesting things you have that might be tucked away in a drawer. Mementos from trips abroad, photos of friends, even jewelry you hardly wear but won’t get rid of.
Use these personal objects to add depth and texture to your space in an intimate way. They will subtly tell your story in each room.
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