The idyllic happy home. What makes one? And, more importantly, how do you create one?
Nowadays, design is evolving as its link to well-being is more obvious than ever. Interior design has the power to support your physical and mental health.
In this article, our Expert Guests, Amy and Athina (from Topology London) and Medina King (from MK Kids Interiors) will share with you their best tips to help you create a happy home.
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Meet our Expert Guests
One of our first ever Twitter chats was centred around the fascinating topic of interiors and well-being, and this field was revisited recently. In this article, we have combined two style-packed Q&As with design and well-being experts. They share the tips and tricks they use to create a happy home.
Let’s meet our designers!
Amy and Athina are the interior designers behind the studio Topology London. They lead the way when it comes to online design services and educational workshops. Amy and Athina are “on a mission to show that great style doesn’t have to come at a cost.” They have also collaborated with design giants such as IKEA, Habitat and MADE.
Medina King, from MK Kids Interiors, is an award-winning interior designer and well-being expert. She has designed numerous residential, healthcare and public space projects. Medina “provides a turn key design and build service for children’s spaces and serves a client base which includes royals, dignitaries and other high profile professionals worldwide.”
5 well-being hacks designers use to create a happy home
We’ve merged both Q&As and organised them by subtopic to bring you the best well-being hacks experts use to create a happy home. You’ll soon discover how easy these tips are to implement in any design scheme.
1. Understand what a happy home means to you
What does a happy space mean to you?
Medina: A happy space provides peace, it sparks joy and should be a safe and happy haven. It makes you smile and feel a sense of satisfaction. It evokes great feelings and beautiful memories.
How do you design a space, taking all family members into account?
Medina: A family space should have elements of comfort, relaxation, socialisation, and play. Close attention should be paid to fabric finishes, they should be durable and easy to clean. Display art, textiles, furniture etc. that has meaning to each family member.
2. Introduce easy well-being tips to create a happy home
What is the easiest way to maximise natural light at home?
Amy and Athina: Hang a mirror opposite a window! The mirror will reflect any natural light that enters throughout the day around the room and make your room appear brighter. This is one of our top tips and we always advise this to clients who have naturally dark spaces. Try it…
What is your favourite way to introduce plants in your decor? Do you have a go-to plant?
Amy and Athina: Philodendrons. They have a strong green pigment and grow large. So if you only have room for one plant, it’s substantial enough. Plus, they’re cheap and easy to maintain: they can live in the dark and just need watering weekly.
How does technology at home affect your mood? Do you have any rules?
Amy and Athina: Tech can improve your mood (e.g. controllable mood lighting and electric aroma diffusers have a calming effect). But unsightly tech such, as wires, can have a negative effect on us. In bedrooms, try to have no visible wires as they interrupt the “calm” of the space.
3. Improve your sleep and boost your productivity
Why is having a good sleep atmosphere important for your wellbeing?
Medina: Rest is important for our well being and mental health. Little or uncomfortable sleep can reduce productivity, causing us to be irritable. A good sleep makes us more productive and happier.
How can you design a bedroom for a better night’s sleep?
Amy and Athina: As previously mentioned, try to hide unsightly, disruptive wires. Introduce some natural materials (e.g. a wooden bedhead and linen sheets). Be smart with colour — blues and greens are scientifically proven to relax you. Green is emotionally calming and blue lowers your blood pressure.
How can you design a home office space to improve your well-being?
Medina: Have Natural light where possible, if not ample lighting, a plant for oxygen, cheerful imagery, comfortable chair and if possible a height adjustable table.
4. Declutter and organise your home
What is the impact of clutter in your well-being? And how do you get rid of it?
Medina: Clutter creates confusion. It confuses our minds and creates dis-organisation. Organising creates peace, makes things easier to find and is a pleasure to look at. An organised space helps us to focus. Donate or ditch.
Some things are valuable, but not fit with for the space. They can go in beautiful storage boxes.
Where is the balance between Marie Kondo and “eclectic maximalist mess”?
Amy and Athina: The key is organisation — of everything! Organise even the small things such as letters, keys and coasters. You’d be surprised at how you’ll feel uplifted when these items are physically lifted off your surfaces. Top tip: intro high shelving!
5. Use colour to create a happy home
How can you use colour to boost your mood? Any tried-and-tested tips?
Medina: Colour psychology has shown the following colours to have various effects on our mood: warmer colours energies us, while calmer colours soothe, relax and help us to focus. Use colour in Art and accessories or even on the walls.
Are there any colours you avoid when decorating a room?
Amy and Athina: Not really — your relationship to colour is unique. If you want to paint your walls chocolate brown because the colour makes you feel at ease, go ahead! We each have special connections to colours that may stem from things such as happy childhood experiences.
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