August 14, 2019 | Updated: May 11, 2020

Ask the Expert

How to make a happy home

With all the unavoidable daily pressures of modern life the home should be the one place where ensuring a happy environment is a priority. This doesn’t just happen through good design but rather is achieved through thoughtful design. Being happier at home is within reach; it’s about being mindful and creating the right mood. While it’s true that the interior design of the home cannot guarantee happiness at least it can create the conditions for being conducive to happiness.

Simple things in life

No home is an island and we are all interconnected in terms of our mutual wellbeing so part of how to be happy at home is being aware of the environment. And treating our surroundings with respect is a first step. This means finding a harmonious work-life balance, cutting down on energy consumption, recycling as much as possible and choosing renewables, in as much as we can.

Finding happiness in harmony, lessons from around the world

The Scandinavians are renowned for long winters and focus on the home as the centre of their lives. This translates into an importance being given to the home as a refuge, a place where people entertain, where interior design reflects a life philosophy. The Lagom concept (neither a lot nor a little, the best in its right balance) is popular in Sweden based around an understanding that joy and a positive outlook can be fomented through order and harmony within our surroundings.  

Zen and the Japan’s home

Similarly the Japanese are renowned for their pursuit of Zen not only as a life philosophy but as a hierarchy for the organisation of the home. This is closely aligned with the natural world and this relationship is universal no matter where we reside. We all live within interdependent ecological systems no matter how evolved we consider ourselves.

The Danish art of Hygge

Another buzz word currently within the design world is Hygge, a philosophy that revolves around those fleeting moments of happiness in the home. Curling up with a book on a rainy afternoon snuggled in a favourite armchair, staring into the fire on a winter’s evening by the hearth. It’s no accident that the concept is Danish, given the fact that as a country is regularly tops the world’s happiness index. Here below we look at ways through which this approach be incorporated into the home.

How to bring hygge into the home

Hygge style is less complicated than you might think to introduce into the home. Achieving the hygge bedroom might be as simple as an armchair with a reading light placed strategically beside a window with a view, or a fireplace. The hygge living room should be planed around a number of foci so that the television (or other electronic equipment) does not dominate the space. At its core hygge is about surrounding yourself with things that make you happy. And that happiness to some extent depends on our healthy relationships.

Happiness in a hybrid approach 

Another trend in this interconnected global village we increasingly inhabit is the cross pollination of concepts that revolve around bringing harmony to the home. None is more noteworthy than Japandi, a mix of Scandinavian and Japanese style. Quality materials, neutral colour schemes and clutter free spaces come together in an age old but nevertheless contemporary approach to creating happy homes.  

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