The design styles that will make your home happiest, according to a new study

Now that we’re no longer confined to our homes due to lockdowns, we’re bound to feel happier in them. We enjoy our living spaces because we’re not in them ALL the time — but have you ever wondered which interior design styles are the happiest of them all?

Knowing how to design a living room that feels cohesive and calm requires you to first narrow things down to a couple of styles, be it industrial maximalist or modern rustic. According to online interior design service Modsy’s interior wellness report, there are five key styles that bring the feel-good factor.

kitchen with exposed brick and island

(Image credit: Cult Furniture)

Modsy recently ran a study on how the design of our home impacts our well-being. It surveyed 1,500 people and showed that people who had the following design styles were most likely to be happy at home: 

  • Rustic
  • Mediterranean
  • Contemporary
  • Mid-century modern
  • Mountain

In other words, not any of these popular styles: traditional, industrial, glam, coastal, minimalist, maximalist, Scandi or boho. 


rustic living room with exposed beams

(Image credit:

Rustic typically features lots of natural materials. Old, exposed wooden beams or shiplap, brick and wicker, plus landscape artwork often appear in rustic schemes. 

The fact rustic styles makes the list reflects the way being surrounded by natural materials and images of nature tends to make us feel a sense of wellbeing. In the report, people were asked how a well-designed room would make them feel, and ‘cozy’ and ‘calm’ were the two top terms they used. 

Just like having some houseplants is known to boost our mood, natural elements do seem to bring a sense of happiness and calm.


modern mountain style bedroom with large windows

(Image credit: LUXXU)

Just like rustic, ‘mountain’ style has plenty of natural materials — and huge windows with beautiful views, of course. Modern mountain style is also characterized by tall ceilings, fuss-free spaces and a super relaxing atmosphere that makes you want to light a fire and get cozy.


terrazzo tiles in kitchen with moka coffee machine

(Image credit: Walls and Floors)

The fact that ‘Mediterranean’ was among the happiest design styles to us suggests that we love being in spaces that a) have a sense of history and b) remind us of sunny, care-free holidays. That said, Mediterranean design has plenty of natural materials too, from ceramic tile to cotton.

There’s also a sense of indoor-outdoor living with lots of natural light flooding into fuss-free living spaces through arched windows.

Mid-century modern

eames lounge chair and foot stool in living area

(Image credit: Pash Classics)

Mid-century modern furniture has an enduring appeal because of its slim profiles, clean lines and versatility. It works with everything, whether your space is a riot of maximalist color or chic and cozy Scandi design ideas


modern living room with built-in unit, wooden armchair and natural light

(Image credit: Neptune)

The fact contemporary and mid-century modern came out on top as ‘happy’ design styles implies that we simply feel good when our homes are up to date. Modern living room ideas, from oversized lamps to moody paint colors, make us feel like we’re up to speed with the latest trends. 

This isn’t important for everyone, but it’s interesting to note that those with a ‘country’ style interior were the least likely to say they feel happy in their home. They were also the least likely to say they feel excited to invite people over.

Does your style make the list?