The decor secrets to making your home a happier place to live by Martyn Lawrence Bullard

Interior designer Martyn Lawrence Bullard reveals the final flourishes that elevate a home and boost your mood, too

Martyn Lawrence Bullard living room
Living room designed by Martyn Lawrence Bullard
(Image credit: Martyn Lawrence Bullard)

‘A happy home is a home filled with personality, a place where you feel welcomed, enveloped and extremely comfortable from the moment you step into it. It’s the place that reveals the window of our decorative souls and exposes our passions in every way,’ says interior designer Martyn Lawrence Bullard. ‘Color, texture, light and form all play their part in making this tapestry come to life, but personality is the thing that attracts us to one and other, and the home should capture that individual spirit in a way that wows guests with wonder, intrigue and excitement.’ 

Martyn is known for his use of bold shades, flair for drama and dynamic way with flourishes and finishing touches, the hotels and homes he designs are packed wiht modern interior design ideas. ‘There’s no doubt that interior design brings happiness to a home and its inhabitants – it’s life changing. The experience of beautiful rooms, colors you love, and textures that make you feel warm and cozy inside bring about extreme happiness and can change your mood from good to bad almost instantaneously. A happy home is a place to feel safe in, to revive the senses in, and to be yourself in.’

Martyn Lawrence Bullard library corner

Library corner designed by Martyn Lawrence Bullard 

(Image credit: Martyn Lawrence Bullard)

‘One of the key ingredients to a happy home is the accessories – finishing touches are everything' Martyn says. 'They complete a room and tell the story of the space in a glance. A home isn’t a personal space without accessories, which truly mirror personal taste.’ 

Interestingly, it's not soft furnishings or accessories that he picks out first, however, and in fact he's a big fan of home library ideas. ‘Books always give me great comfort and make me happy. Being surrounded by them, in bookcases, on coffee tables, by the bedside or even piled neatly on the floor, makes me happy. I also love to see collections of things – a grouping of antique plates on a wall, vintage paperweights gathered on a desk, Italian art glass sparkling on a window ledge – they show people's interests and passions, tell their story and often carry memories of fun times and travels, which are all part of the recipe of a happy home. Collections bring such joy into a space and provide flirtations for the eye.’

Martyn Lawrence Bullard gallery wall

(Image credit: Martyn Lawrence Bullard)

‘I always like to add whimsy into my interiors such as an odd shaped chair, a three-legged stool, a gilded mirror juxtaposed above a modern streamlined consul… things that are just a little off and unexpected.' One of Martyn's gallery wall ideas, to cover a wall in hand mirrors, above, is a case in point.  'They provoke the mind, capture the imagination, make you smile and ultimately offer character, all of which add up to a happy environment which is always the ultimate goal in a home. 

‘I don’t believe in interiors rules – just follow your heart, flirt playfully with things that attract you and once gathered together, the final picture will be one of happiness, love, light and welcome.’

Amy Moorea Wong

Amy Moorea Wong is a freelance interior design journalist with a decade of experience in contemporary print and digital editorial, previously News Editor at Livingetc. She writes on a broad range of modern design topics from news and interior zeitgeist to houses, architecture, travel and wider culture. She has a penchant for natural materials, surprising pops of colour and pattern and design with an eco edge.