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  • Stephanie Donnelly

Interior Design & A Better You (Part 2)

Updated: Sep 1, 2022

How Style Affects Your Mood

A well-decorated home is more than a place to gather and show off your designer skills. It’s a place to find comfort, spend time making memories, and share moments of relaxation with friends and family. While you can find a surplus of cute furniture on the market, not every stylish sofa is comfortable. Finding that perfect balance between being cozy and having a beautiful room can feel like a hard task. Fortunately, you can use your décor and style to set the mood in a room.

When your home is a reflection of you, you feel comfortable and familiar in your space. This automatically helps in giving you the right energy to start or end your day. Senses are addressed and affected by interior design features such as lighting, materials, colors, acoustics, texture, furniture layout, and even living elements. These factors have the ability to impact how people feel. We can sense whether a space is warm, safe, comfortable, and drives social interactions or cold, hard, and uninviting which zaps energy if you stay in it for a long period of time.


There are many ways that furniture and décor can alter your mood, and making an interior plan that benefits positive mindsets can come with a lot of benefits. A comfortable room can relieve restlessness, help you decompress, and leave you feeling more energetic. One of the best advantages to creating a space that encourages a positive mindset is that it boosts your mental health overall.

When you begin to place furniture in a room, positioning can be the difference between an awkward space and an open area. The layout of a room can make a space feel functional and balanced. A great way to determine the position of couches, chairs, and tables is by setting a focal point. Everything in the room should surround that point to ensure there’s plenty of space. Thus, when you have guests or want to relax, there’s a nice balance in spatial awareness. This can help liven up a mood by providing a convenient setting that doesn’t feel cramped or stiff, which can leave you in a brighter mood.


The choice of artwork in a space says something about you and has the power to affect mood and behavior. Every human being expresses art in different ways and forms, similar to how a painting is interpreted and felt differently by every person who takes time to look at it. Viewing art, taking a trip to an art gallery, and engaging in creative activities all have positive psychological effects such as reducing anxiety, stress, depression and slowing down cognitive decline. Humans are drawn to beauty even if these artistic expressions differ by culture, time, age, beliefs, types, shapes, forms, and so much more.

Plants and Flowers

Bringing nature into the home elevates moods, and one of the most effective ways to do with is through the use of house plants and flowers. Studies show that the presence of plants improve concentration, memory retention, and reduce stress. Plants add a sense of nature which typically has a calming effect while wooden elements typically give more of a nature and grounding effect.

Flowers also provide mood-lifting benefits. In fact, flowers around the home can reduce the likelihood of depression and increase positive feelings. In addition to the aesthetic beauty they provide, flowers have a calming, relaxing effect on people. Of course, flowers are a beautiful addition to any space, but they also make people feel happier.

Many types of houseplants are natural air filters, reducing allergens, and increasing air quality. They also increase the oxygen levels in the air, stabilize humidity, and add a pop of color to your home.


A light-drenched room is a joy to experience, but did you know that sunlight also reduces depression? Whether you get your sunlight outdoors or through a window, sunlight is a mood lifter. More sunlight being let into rooms can actually boost happiness while a persistent lack of sun can trigger sadness or enhance anxiety.

Sunlight tends to energize and motivate humans at home and work. While there have been many studies demonstrating the psychological and physiological benefits of natural light, one study showed that employees with access to natural light noticeably outperformed co-workers without sunlight in their workspaces. Additionally, when people had to work using only artificial light, they also showed a qualitative lack of vitality and showed signs of poor sleep.

Lighting goes beyond artificial light indoors. Getting a healthy dose of sunlight is a mood lifter, boosts positive thoughts, creativity, productivity, and better sleep along with several other benefits. Sunlight also has many proven mental health benefits such as alleviating depression and anxiety. You might also feel a noticeable change in mood when it’s a sunny day compared to overcast skies and rain.

Lighting sets the mood and is an integral part of the psychology of space when it comes to interior design. Entering a room filled with natural light can effectively lift your mood, energy, and introduce a happy feeling. Depending on the purpose of a room, lighting can have a bright, energizing, or cozy effect. After all, different needs are addressed in varying spaces such as homes, offices, and restaurants. Likewise, every room should have its own lighting specifications. For example, bright light heighten emotions (both positive and negative emotions) while dim light can set a romantic or calming ambience. Exposure to natural light increases serotonin levels in the brain and boosts your mood and happiness levels which is why longer and more exposure to natural light relieves symptoms of depression and anxiety thus leading to a longer-term, joyful state.

There are many ways that your personal style can affect your mood and the mood of those around you. The psychology behind furniture, artwork, nature, lighting, and decor all play a significant role in the interior design process that can be overlooked if you're not working with an expert. Your home should be a reflection of you as well as an escape from the outside world and a safe haven for you to live out the best version of yourself. How does your style affect your mood? Start a conversation with Stephanie today to learn more!

Don't miss out on Part 1! Go back and read it now, or click to continue reading Part 3!

~This blog was brought to you by S. Donnelly Interiors. Learn more about the interior design project process by following Stephanie Donnelly and her interior design services in Glen Ellyn, Illinois and the surrounding areas!


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