Ikigai Meets Interior Design

People always told me that the secret to being happy in life is to do something you both love and can get paid for. Turns out, the Japanese concept of ikigai (pronounced “eye-ka-guy”) means that – and more! When applied properly, your home and work life converge, allowing you to find stress-free happiness in all parts of your life – including interior design.

Ikigai is the latest trend in interior design.

So, What is Ikigai?

To get a better idea of how ikigai works when it comes to interior design, we first need to take a look at Ikigai in general.

Iki, meaning life, and gai, meaning value, combine to form your reason for being or reason for getting up in the morning. And you can achieve this state by finding the perfect intersection of the following:

  • What you really love
  • What the world needs
  • What you can get paid for
  • What you’re good at

A joining of just two or three of the above parameters and you’ll be left underwhelmed or unfulfilled, so it’s essential that you find the perfect balance of all four.

How Does Ikigai Apply to Interior Design?

The general principles of ikigai actually work quite well when it comes to interior design. And with a little adaptation, they work even better. Take a look for yourself!

This revamped ikigai diagram is specific to interior design.

As you can see, instead of contemplating what you’re good at, what you can get paid for and what the world needs, interior design ikigai encourages you to find your happy place among what your home needs, what you can afford and what works with your existing décor, not to mention what you really love.

Get the right combo of all four and you’ll be sure to enjoy a perfect balance of form, function, flexibility and flow.

How Will Ikigai Affect Interior Design?

With less of an emphasis on creating an escape from the rigors of day-to-day life, ikigai focuses more on melding work and home life into one. So, get ready for an influx of home office makeovers.

From the blue wall to the fun artwork and décor, this room perfectly exemplifies ikigai.

Ikigai is also a highly personalized way of living. It truly will differ for everyone because, let’s get real, circus décor would definitely not make someone who’s deathly afraid of clowns happy.

Anyway, since ikigai puts so much emphasis on the individual, we should also prepare for more out-of-the-box décor – anything to add a little of your own personality and heart to your space. Pops of color and fun pieces like the unique artwork shown above will become almost normal.

Another change we see on the horizon is for interior designers themselves. As interior designers internalize ikigai, their designs could reflect their own style in addition to that of their customers. It could also impact hiring as design firms search for prospects with tastes and styles to complement their own and improve overall teamwork.

What do you think of ikigai? Is it something you could see using in your day-to-day life? Let us know!