Want to incorporate some slow design principles into your home? Here are a few suggestions:

Think heirloom: The concept has largely disappeared from our style vocabulary, but handmade craftsmanship is alive and well, said Tom Fisher, who heads the University of Minnesota's College of Design. Seek out well-made pieces by local artisans.

Start small. If you have artisan taste but a bare-bones budget, buy one thing you really love, said Carl Honoré, author of "In Praise of Slowness." "Anchor each room with one piece that will have real character, depth and meaning that will last."

Be patient: "Don't buy a roomful of furniture all at once," Honoré said. "Wait. Let the room evolve over time." Resist the urge for "instant decoration. You just end up with disposable stuff that doesn't lift the spirit."

Create tech-free zones: "Home is an important hideout from our working life, a place where we can slow down," said Geir Berthelsen, founder of the World Institute of Slowness. "We need to make sure our environment is a sign to do this." That means rooms that are refuges from computers, the Internet or other electronic gadgets.

Don't toss it; fix it: Yes, we live in an era of disposable furniture, but some pieces are worth repairing, Honoré said. He cites a little table that had been in his family for years and was damaged by his children. "It took a while to find somebody who could fix it," he said. "Now that piece has another chapter. It's not as good as new, but why would you want it to be?"