Joy and happiness in decorating are a little like beauty being in the eye of the beholder. Yes, there are certain elements in design that would make most people happy. But much of what makes our homes - our rooms - happy is very, very personal. A color I associate with happiness may fly in the face of color psychology. A color you love to decorate with may be one I associate with bad memories. And these days, most nurseries and children's room could be considered happy.
For some people, a room that is very symetrical or highly organized makes them happy. For others, it's having a lot of family photos displayed where they can see them on a regular basis. I personally like seeing my souvenirs or things that evoke happy memories, as well as using lots of art and even more books! In general there are certain qualities that a room has that most folks describe as happy: rooms with plenty of natural light via windows, the use of bright colors, and rooms that have one or more pieces to draw the eye that are quirky or fun.
Jonathan Adler's name is synonymous with joyous and happy decorating. His rooms display a joie de vivre and a huge sense of fun. In his new book 100 Ways to Happy Chic Your Life, the third installment in his Happy Chic series, Adler shares his design advice as well as freely giving advice. As he says, "I want this book to be as much a lifestyle bible as a decorating bible."
Ironically, Adler says that although his book is all about bringing joy into the home, his work as a designer is anything but constant cheer.
"I work really hard as a designer and I'm borderline tortured, a la Vincent van Gogh," he states. "I work hard to make things that look effortlessly put together and also happen to bring joy into people's lives."
Following (the first nine) are examples of Adler's joyful rooms as well as a plethora of happy ECD rooms. Enjoy!