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The Impact of Design on your Wellbeing 
Follow up to Cornell Panel - Five practical and easy tips


Lucie Ayres '98


22 Interiors, a full-service, award-winning interior design agency.

Nino Mier '03
Gallery Director

Mier Gallery, a contemporary art gallery representing emerging and prominent artists.

William Robertson '97


Design Build Labs, a vertically integrated design, management, and construction firm.

Moderator: Keith Hermanstyne '04


The most magical way to transform any room is to paint it.  The idea that white makes a space look bigger isn't always a reason to paint a room white.  Rooms that don't get much natural light actually look better with a darker, more saturated hue on the walls because the shadows enhance the color vs. making a lighter wall read like it's always in shadow, which can feel dingy. I recommend purchasing large paper paint samples (most paint companies do this) and sticking them on a wall and leaving them there for 48 hours so you can see how the colors change as the light changes in the space and then make your decision.

If paint isn't an option, look at large scale art or tapestries....which brings us to tip 2 below.



The rule to remember when buying art is there are no rules.  Decide first what level of complexity, color, and attention you want a piece of art to have.  Visit museums and galleries to get a sense of what type of art you like.  We love Nino Meir's galleries and artists.  There are plenty of online resources that are wonderful as well with a variety of price points such as and  Be mindful when framing any piece, as it is an easy way to elevate a simple or small piece. 


Plants + Trees

It is undisputed that adding plants, flowers, trees, succulents to your home or work space calms you, makes your work more efficiently, and overall improves your health.   Check out this article to learn more about which plants are the easiest to start with or just visit your local nursery to get started. If you can't do real, then go for faux, which will be effective as well. 



One of the easiest ways to really improve your wellbeing in any space is to ventilate it.  Open your windows first thing in the morning or when you're home all day.  Also think about scented candles -  scents not only stimulate your senses but also your memory - find one that reminds you of some place special. 



Take a moment to think about the flow of a space - how do you walk around pieces of furniture, what are the views from seated areas, what works, what could be improved - and play.  Move pieces around and see how they feel.  See if changing the orientation of a piece of furniture makes a positive impact on how you use a space.  It's surprising how changing even a floor lamp's position in a room can completely transform the feel of a space. 

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