Design Daily with Jonathan Adler: The Winners of the Happy Chic Home Contest!

BerryLead.jpgAfter two months of searching, we have found the Happiest Chicest Home in America! But it wasn’t easy. We’ve been tearing our tassels out deciding between these talented contestants! The colors have never been bolder, the patterns sassier, nor the tchotchkes cheekier than in this group of submissions. To all of you who surround yourself with smile-inducing decor, we commend you! And to the top three, may you revel in your Happy Chic glory and your Jonathan Adler loot!

Jonathan Adler, the lead judge and muse for the Happy Chic Home Contest, reveals the winners . . .


HappyChicBDen_0.jpg“Clayton Berry is the FIRST PRIZE WINNER of the ‘Happy Chic’ contest and the recipient of a $2,500 gift certificate for use at moi’s stores and website,, and a signed copy of my coffee table book My Prescription for Anti-Depressive Living! You may have taken the tour of this Maximalist Midwestern home with me last week, but we’ll do it again, because one could live happily ever after in a Maximalist delirium. Our clever Clayton created the ultimate in design echoing moi’s advice about making your home your own: Personal style means having a space that’s very comfy but that is filled with stuff that has personal meaning and created by passionate people; it should make you happy and happiness is chic. The vignettes styled throughout this home play and interact with good design amid unexpected touches of his own personal style. I oft prescribe the advice to layer, layer, layer. Unexpected touches are the soul of the Maximalist home: A painting hung on a bookcase, a chandelier in a closet, a brass lions head door knocker in a modern apartment. Me thinks this is a study of Happy Chic in a well-edited space that doesn’t feel cluttered or overwhelmed. J’adore this very groovy, happy home.”

HappyChic2nd-Amybed.jpg“Amy Almsteier is the SECOND PRIZE WINNER of the ‘Happy Chic’ contest, and recipient of a $500 gift certificate for use at moi’s stores and website,, and a signed copy of my book. Clever Amy sent us pics of her chic California home with a decor enhanced by inherited pieces of mid-century modern furniture, groovy Russel Wright dishes and a painting by her grandfather, who was an artist. The following rooms have been put together with a sense of panache and confidence that I commend. Be graphic, be bold, and put those things in your home that make you happy. Bravo!”

BEDROOM (above)

“With a series of color pops in this bedroom, Amy exudes some design exuberance. I spy an unexpected touch of color with the waved vertical stripes on the headboard. Brilliant detail–it feels carefree and consistent with the color accents throughout the room. The bedside table is nicely edited using a similar color theme as found on the headboard. Yellow, green, blue… these colors are happy colors. Moi’s take is that this room is about clean lines, bold colors, and a sense of humor–the antidote to not taking this decorating too seriously. It’s advice I give everyday: paint a wall orange, hang a chandelier in the bedroom, express yourself by being out of the ordinary. Have fun!”

“I’m a pink-and-purple fanatic! This color combination is innately fun. Even more j’adorable is the idea of lining the buffet drawer with this color combo and instantly adding glamour to anyone who pulls it open. It echoes moi’s advice to mix and match with panache–even a dish drawer can come alive with a pattern.”


HappyChicMA-desk_0.jpg“Michelle Adams is the THIRD PRIZE WINNER of the ‘Happy Chic’ contest, and recipient of a $100 gift certificate for use at moi’s stores and website,, and a signed copy of my book. We toured this apartment in one of my earlier blogs, and I want to tour it again… it is a gesture of Maximalist merriment! This apartments decor is all about transforming a small 325-square-foot space into a happy home.

It’s important to note once more how the pin board hung behind the desk is a clever way to display your creativity! Voila! You have art! Michelle reminds us that a Happy Chic home is one full of unusual bits edited throughout a consistent color story. And I’ve blogged it once, but I’ll blog it again: That bookcase from Design Within Reach stacked with a fave collection of books, is a masterful way of dividing this roomscape.”

This hallway is all about layers, layers, and layers of love. The salon-style hung art is an eclectic mix of fashion photo finds, watercolor sketches, and personal framed pics of friends–making for an especially happy vignette because it’s unexpected. I recommend using hallways for a creative moment; it gives the space a personality, an eccentric personality. I also go crazy for wild prints, and think that zebra rug is j’adorable.”

Note to Winners:
You’ll be contacted via e-mail by the team at Jonathan Adler regarding the delivery of your prize.

“This contest was an opportunity for design lovers to show off their bold and ingenious decorating ideas and tricks and to show me some Happy Chic style! We were thrilled to receive such an idiosyncratic mix of pics showing off spacious homes and studio apartments with new ways to interpret my design philosophy and my work!”

“A special note to those creative and clever entrants who submitted photos of their happy chic homes and apartments: I’m serious about design and about bringing style, craft, joy, and a general feeling of grooviness to your home. It was a pleasure to see how each of you recharged and redesigned living spaces to be your own happy retreats. Remember, minimalism is a bummer… and a chic home is one that is decorated to express who you are and makes you happy when you walk in the door. Merci to those who approach their home with a similar design sensibility and want to show it off!”

So we might not have been able to award all the style-tastic entries, but they were too good to keep to ourselves. Come back next Thursday for our gallery of supremely honorable mentions.

Anne E. Collins
(design editor) and Jonathan Adler (Product and Interior Designer)