I am a man that lives in Tokyo, the metropolitan of Japan. Recently in about thirty years, Japanese living styles have changed extremely, that is, the styles are getting to be foreign styles, the windows: not Syouji, tables: not Tyabudai, floorings: not tatami and so on. Especially in big city like Tokyo, Oosaka and Nagoya the tendency is plain. Though there will be the many reasons that recent Japan have gotten to be such situations, recent Japanese especially young men may wish such cool design like European style, for instance, a data was reported a few years ago, the length of foots per over-all body height of Japanese students have gotten to be long, some specialists of the genre say that the cause will be that young men use chairs of styles that stretch their legs, not the Seiza style that have existed from long ago. Off course the cause may be by other aspects like abundant foods. But I approve about the opinion of specialists too.
Certainly though the old Japanese living styles are disappearing in big cities, if we go to local towns or villages, there will be many traditional style house. Now, some people (especially the adults over 40 years old) who are living in big cities like Tokyo lived and sent in such traditional house style of local towns for their boys or girls age. After all when they got to be about 20 years old, they went out from the towns and went to Tokyo etc because they yearned for the fashions or convenience of Tokyo.
They become businessmen, when they take long vacations of summer or new-year some of them go back to their towns or villages of their home countries. And they say then "the most comfortable place is my hometown and house after all". Off course the their saying may be because they are released from daily stress like hard working, but I think that another reason exists, that is, Japanese traditional house styles may give the influences to such feeling.
For instance, when they see garden (Teien) they will be calm, that is not always the scenery, though foreigners do not know about that, Tatami generates slight natural smell because Tatami is made from grass (Igusa). So when they sleep by Futon style on Tatami directly (not bed style in many cases of local town), they feel the slight smell from Tatami, and feel nostalgia as if they go back to their child age.
Since I have been in Tokyo from my birth, unfortunately I have not the local hometown like them. But I feel the smell of Tatami, am very calm down.
I felt that should cherish the old styles as Japanese too.
Thank you for reading poor English.