The relationship between human emotions and interior design.

Aeiforia Architects was registered in 2012 by Ar. Bhupendra and Ar. Pragya. The name is a fusion of two Greek terms AEI & FORIA to make “Aeiforia.” Aei is sustainable while Foria means forum. Aeiforia Architects is mainly focused to provide a solution to the corporate interior requirement of their clients. Aeiforia is committed to make all its designs green. All their works are ‘swift, sharp and reliable.’

Interior design is often confused with decoration; in actuality, interior design goes beyond the selection of finishes or making a good impression. Interior spaces are sensed through their positive vibes, sense of belonging, look and feel, emerging set of various hues, light and textures. Zeng et Al. (2017) define emotion as a series of cognitive experiences, a plethora of feelings, thoughts and behavior of comprehensive psychological reaction and physiological state, is a form of human response. The correlation between the design of interior spaces and human psychology is often unnoticed.

The article reviews how the elements: color, light and texture must be nominated to create different perceptions beyond aesthetics to entice all human senses.


Colour has remained a crucial part of our existence with its manifestation in everything we see (Kaya, 2004).Ballast(2002) associates the hue red with excitement, orange invokes feelings of distress, purple as stately, yellow as cheerful and blue with comfort. The association between colour and emotion is closely tied to colour preferences, but some research has revealed that the perception of colour may vary amongst cultures (Kaya, 2002). In India, Navarasa represents the nine moods of people in different colours. Also, Vaastu shastra is based on astrology, and the Hindu system of design is based on the four bearings, which are assigned different colours with their implications (Reddy et al., 2012). Colour may be explained based on its temperature, for instance, “warm” or “cool”, dictated by the dominant wavelength of colour. Cool colours like blue and green are usually perceived as restful and quiet, while warm colours like yellow and red induce active and stimulating emotions (Ballast, 2002). The weather also becomes a primary factor in the perception of colour; cool colours like blue and green are preferred in summer to make occupants feel more relaxed. The opposite applies in colder climates, where warm hues like red and orange are preferred (Chen, 2016). Individuals are prone to experience discomfort from the dissonance of colour and may even elevate to the emotion of being distraught. Hence, the selection of colours must be made with the utmost care (Reddy et al., 2012).


Figure 1 Co-working space executed by aeiforia architects, gurugram


Lighting is one of the essential elements of interior design; it creates a feeling of safety, comfort, and enjoyment, but each room has its requirement for lighting (Reddy et al., 2012). The reason why daylighting should be preferred over artificial lighting is obvious; individuals exposed to daylight experience fewer mental health issues and are more relaxed (Chen, 2016). Daylight controls the circadian rhythm of hormone secretion and body temperature, impacting our sleep, alertness, mood etc.(Reddy et al., 2012). However, light in the morning is different from that in the evening, and yellow lights are proven to help people feel more relaxed compared to white light. Hence yellow lights may be used in homes, while white light can be used in office spaces (Chen, 2016).


Figure 2 workstation area designed and built by aeiforia architects, Bangalore


Texture is a tactile character of a material; it is often used to add interest to space which has a dull monochrome colour (Reddy et al.,2012).“Dynamic textures are repetitive, time-varying patterns that tend to repeat (Weeks, unknown).” This variety of textures stimulate visual imagery creating a soothing sensation in the mind (Juslin & Vasrfjall, 2008). To induce feelings of calm; textures mimicking water movement and natural plant patterns may be used(Juslin & Vasrfjall, 2008). The ideal way to achieve this is introducing plants, pattern fabric to upholstery and using wood and granite for tables and countertops (Weeks, unknown). In addition, the textures that are rougher and coarser also make people feel heavier. When comparing stone with wood, the stone is colder while wood is more natural. Interior designers should assist clients find the most suitable textures for their homes. Chen(2016) asserts that people feel more at ease with natural textures like wood over cold stone textures. Also, rough and coarse texture conveys a perception of heaviness. However, it is up to designers to decide textures based on the climatic conditions on the site. The texture is related to size, scale, proportion, pattern and the most to weight. While rough, coarse textures make an object feel heavier a smooth texture will be perceived as lighter (Reddy et al,2012). For instance, a polished marble floor will be perceived to be lighter than hardwood panelling despite being heavier (Reddy et al,2012). A designer must also have an understanding of the correlation of absorption/reflection of light with texture. Smooth textures reflect light while rough textures absorb light. Excess light may flatten a texture and cast shadows causing a surface to lose its definition(Reddy et al, 2012).

Interior must go beyond aesthetics to address senses like smell, hearing and touch. The sound of water falling or soft music in a space will mask noise pollution from the outdoors. The fragrance of plants will impart a relaxing effect. The play of textures will encourage interaction; a soft spongey texture may induce relaxation(Finisa, 2020).

Perception of the elements of an interior varies among individuals. However, designers ought to be aware of how elements like light, colour and texture may manipulate a person. Certain aspects like the need for daylight are a generic need of the populace. These elements must be applied after comprehending the function of the space. For example, a room has to be relaxing and the office space must enhance alertness.


  1. Ballast, D. K. (2002). Interior design reference manual. Professional Pub. Inc.: Belmont, CA.
  2. Chen, C.(2016) Magical Interior Design Affects Your moods.
  3. Churchill, W. (2013). The selection, creation, and perception of interior spaces: An environmental psychology approach. The handbook of interior architecture and design.
  4. Finisa(2020) Emotional design: How to make your audience fall in love. Available at:
  5. Jalil, N. A., Yunus, R. M., & Said, N. S. (2012). Environmental colour impact upon human behaviour: A review. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 35, 54-62.
  6. Juslin, P., & Vastfjall, D. (2008). Emotional responses to music: the need to consider underlying mechanisms. Behavioral and Brain Science, 31, 559-575.
  7. Kaya, N., & Epps, H. H. (2004). Relationship between color and emotion: A study of college students. College student journal, 38(3), 396-405.
  8. Reddy, S. M., Chakrabarti, D., & Karmakar, S. (2012). Emotion and interior space design: an ergonomic perspective. Work, 41(Supplement 1), 1072-1078.
  9. Toet, A., Henselmans, M., Lucassen, M. P., & Gevers, T. (2011). Emotional effects of dynamic textures. i-Perception, 2(9), 969-991.
  11. Zeng, J., & Duan, K. (2017, July). The Personality Emotional Structure In Interior Design. In 2017 3rd International Conference on Economics, Social Science, Arts, Education and Management Engineering (ESSAEME 2017). Atlantis Press.

More from this issue..

Hello world!

Welcome to Astra Starter Templates. This is your first post. Edit or delete it, then start blogging!

Read More »