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Melanie Zaelich
Owner, Home Stylist & Interior Designer
Associate ASID
Certified True Color Expert™
Joy Collaborative
Board Member

Hi, I'm Melanie.  

I started Happy Place Interiors because I love seeing people light up when they enter a space that has been transformed. 

Your environment impacts your well-being and it can bring joy to your life and allow you to spend your time and energy on the things that are important to you — like, life. My business goal is simple: use the power of design to bring more happiness to people.

Happy Place Interiors puts a fresh spin on what you’d expect from
an interior design company.

Rooted in the belief that everyone deserves a happy home, our flexible and collaborative consultation-based, à la carte business model keeps high-quality interior design accessible. Read more about the process here.

Because home is where my heart is, I created designLOVE, a Giving Program. So when you find your happy place, you help others find theirs.

If you are ready to be intentional with your space and see all the possibilities
your home has to offer, reach out — I would love to help make your
home your favorite place to be.


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Melanie Zaelich is an accomplished, award winning interior designer, known for her down-to-earth approach and creativity. As the only interior designer with a consult-based, à la carte business model
in the Twin Cities, Melanie is transforming the way people experience interior design.


Melanie's talent has garnered regional and national design awards.
She has consistently achieved the title of Houzz Best in Service  since 2017. In 2019, she was honored as one of the Top 100 Influential People in Real Estate. Notably, Melanie's design work has been recognized by RESA National and has won the "Top 10 Redesigner of the Year Award — USA" three years in a row: 2019, 2020, and 2021.


Recently, Happy Place Interiors was awarded Silver for "Minnesota's Best" Interior Design Firm 2023.


Media Coverage and Influence

Melanie and her design work have been featured in regional publications like MidwestHome and Axios Twin Cities, as well as prominent national platforms such as Apartment Therapy. Her insights have reached audiences across the US and beyond through her appearances on podcasts.


Empowering Clients through Design

Since 2016, Melanie has enriched the lives of over 1500 homeowners by infusing their space with joy and functionality. Her unique skill set includes making the complex creative process fun and accessible. She breaks it down into manageable, bite-sized pieces, making home design less stressful and more enjoyable. She's fantastic at helping clients discover their unique style, and when it comes to couples, she's the peacemaker, blending their preferences into a harmonious living space. Her ability to visualize spaces and share this visual concept to her clients is her superpower. 

With a commitment to making interior design more approachable, Melanie has carved out a unique niche in the industry. Her consult-based and 
à la carte 
approach fosters collaboration between designer and client, ensuring that each project is a true reflection of the homeowner's vision and personality. Her energy and passion are infectious, and she's on a mission to prove that great design is for everyone. Melanie serves a diverse clientele, including first-time homeowners, empty nesters, parents in pursuit of a refined living environment, individuals seeking expert guidance for their own design ideas, and seniors navigating transitions to new living spaces.

Professional Affiliations and Community Engagement

Melanie is an Associate Member of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID), an active member of Women in Construction, and holds a notable certification as a True Color Expert™. In 2019, she served as President for RESA Minneapolis. Her commitment to community involvement is evident through Happy Place Interiors' membership in the Minnesota Keystone Program, which recognizes companies that contribute a portion of their profits to the community. Happy Place Interiors has been donating a percentage of profits to Minnesota charities since 2017. Charities include: Bridging, Hearts & Hammers, My Very Own Bed and Joy Collaborative.

Spreading Happiness

When she's not busy transforming spaces, Melanie dedicates her time to something even more remarkable. She's a passionate Board Member of Joy Collaborative, a Minnesota non-profit that creates life-enriching spaces for kids with life-limiting conditions. Her heart is as big as her design concepts, and she's all about spreading happiness through the power of design.

In 2024, Melanie created designLOVE, the Happy Place Interiors Giving Program. Through this program, she donates her time and talent to people in need, so they may have a space that fosters hope, health and happiness. 


A Life in Design

Melanie's career is steeped in art and design. Before starting Happy Place Interiors, she spent over 20 years as an award-winning Designer and Art Director at top Minneapolis advertising and design agencies. She honed her skills at established institutions, including Portfolio Center, and undertook specialized color training with Maria Kiliam. She also completed programs with Home Staging & Redesign Resource (HSR) and studied Interior Design through the New York Institute of Art & Design.

Her passion for design and her belief in its power to bring happiness to people's lives are contagious. Through her philanthropic endeavors and her steadfast commitment to delivering accessible design solutions, she has made a significant impact. Her ability to transform spaces, uplift lives, and give back to the community demonstrates her commitment to her craft and the well-being of those she serves.

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