10 Things to Know About the Psychology of Interior Design

Interior design and psychology go hand-in–hand which makes the psychology of interior design a fascinating topic! In the last decade, this topic has been receiving lots of attention. No matter what the space – a living room, office, yoga studio,  doctor’s office – all of the objects and elements in a room should get the credit they deserve.
Interior design is defined as “the art or process of designing the interior decoration of a room or building.”  Interior design recognizes the importance of colors, light, personalities, space, measurements, energy, moods, and much more. What’s the best way to promote happiness and positivity in a building? We think we know some of the best ways. Here are ten things to know about the psychology of interior design!

Color is everything!

 psychology of interior design
Color is a big part of how we experience the world.  Colors have a big impact on mood. They can promote feelings from tranquility to anxiety. Shades like yellow, orange and green tend to promote communication and socialization. Darker colors such as purple, deep blue, red, etc., can promote a sad and gloomy mood. However, all of these shades can promote opposite feelings depending on the appropriate environment. When you are creating a space for yourself or a client, be sure to use colors that fit with the mood you’re attempting to create.

Personality and home design go hand in hand.

 psychology of interior design

Understanding your personality or your client’s personality is key. Understanding personalities can help us understand how a space is going to be utilized. For example, a friendly and social person may want a dining room table to seat family and friends, whereas someone who spends their evenings watching movies and eating popcorn might choose an expensive and comfortable couch over an extravagant dining room. There are no wrong answers when it comes to what elements are included inside of a home – there are just more pertinent and fitting answers depending on someone’s personality.

Perception of space is key.

 psychology of interior design
The best interior designers play with their space. They see things differently and know how to trick the normal eye with their keen perception of space. If you train your mind to analyze a space in a certain way and choose all of the correct colors and elements, a room can come across as far more spacious and luxurious than its actual square footage. For example, a small space for a yoga studio should probably have at least one mirror wall. A studio apartment can feel significantly larger when you step up or down into a kitchen and/or bedroom. Think outside of the box. A room that doesn’t crowd you and gives you room to think and breathe can contribute to your wellbeing.

Natural light is your best friend.

 psychology of interior design
Seeing how light enters and exits a room or building should be your first step when choosing to redo a space. If you’re renovating a space, new windows can be a good idea.  Studies have shown that mood and energy levels are directly related to how much natural light we receive daily. If there is light coming into your space already, use it! Choose translucent curtains that allow that light to creep in with all of its golden glory. Adopt some plants for the sunniest corners of your spaces.They will flourish and make you happy.

There is nothing wrong with artificial light.

 psychology of interior design
While nothing beats natural sunlight, sometimes getting enough sunlight is just not possible. There is nothing wrong with artificial light but try to be intentional. Don’t just order any lightbulb off of Amazon for your lighting. What is the mood you are trying to promote? Is this your bedroom? Is this a library? Warm lighting can make us feel warm on the inside. It is calming and puts our minds at rest. LED lighting, on the other hand, is cold and impossible to feel relaxed in. When creating a safe space for you or for your client, consider Edison bulbs, Himalayan salt lamps, bistro lights and other forms of light that feel as natural as possible.

Be picky about your wall art.

Wall art is similar to choosing colors for walls or furniture that fit a personality. It can promote something inside us without us even realizing it. This art work, whether it’s in a living room or a doctor’s office is saying something to us when we look at it. Try choosing paintings or prints with comforting colors, Black and dark shades of red, purple or blue can make us feel closed in and anxious. Choosing light and warm colors may promote happiness. Hanging landscape photography of summer, spring or early fall may be both visually appealing and inspiring. Be picky. Be intentional. Read the room.

Less is pretty much always more.

Clutter in your space can mean clutter in your brain, your heart and your life. When we say less is more…do you think of Marie Kondo? We sure do. The Marie Kondo method is defined as “a system of simplifying and organizing your home by getting rid of physical items that do not bring joy into your life.” The system was created by Marie Kondo herself, an organizing consultant and author on this topic. While there’s nothing wrong with items in your home and work place, try not to overwhelm your space. You can try to channel this Marie Kondo energy and be purposeful about items.. 

Find what feels good.

One of the biggest key takeaways from the psychology of interior design is that we decide what makes us happy. At the end of the day, everyone is different. Find what makes you happy in your space or find what does that for your client. Does a fridge covered in your child’s artwork fill your heart or do you need an open and spotless kitchen to feel productive? Either way…that decision is yours. As we mentioned before, there are no wrong answers for interior design. There are just the right answers for the right people. Find your style and your colors. Find your art. Find your vibe.

Good energy is easier than you think.

The Chinese art of Feng Shui has been practiced worldwide for over 3,000 years. It could be considered the golden ticket to interior design. Practicing the principles of Feng Shui is believed to attract success, good luck, love and positive energy. Using this practice along with your interior design can mean reading the energy levels of colors and using natural materials. Keeping your space clean but colorful may help you achieve this. This energy will flow throughout your area regardless of your area’s use.

Wherever you are should feel like a safe space.

Every design choice that you make in your home, your work, your client’s home or your client’s work can promote a feeling of safety. Every one of these choice’s has a psychological impact. No one wants to enter a space and not feel welcome or at peace. Practicing all of the points we made above may help you create a space that’s calming, inspiring, and harmonious for both the body and mind.

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