The most common question I get asked is: “what do you do as an interior designer?” So, I’m here to give you the scoop on what an interior designer actually does. Whether you are interested in becoming one yourself or are looking to hire someone to boost your creative ideas. This post will give you a brief overview of what we as designers do day to day.
I love Interior Design! I have the freedom to express my creativity, work in a group, and share new and beautiful ideas. Like most professions, not every day is the same. Designers work with different clients who have different tastes. The diversity is what really makes the job so much fun. Exploring different styles and coming up with new and unique ways to put things together is truly the recipe for interior design.
As far as what a designer does, there are different steps to the design process. I bet you didn’t know that! How can there be steps to making a house look pretty? You just do it, right? Well, there are more pieces to the puzzle than that.
The first stage in the design process is the Design Consultation or the Programming Phase. This is where the designer meets with the client and discusses the project at hand. This is the beginning of it all, this is where the spark of imagination ignites. The two (designer and client) exchange ideas, inspirational pictures and feedback to start the process of the design.
This is what we call Schematic Design, where the designer takes all the feedback from the client and puts it all together. The designer takes the fact that you love blues and yellows while you also want comfortable furniture and puts it in the plan. Oh, and you need something that is easy to clean because the dogs and kids love to jump on the couch. The designer takes all of that information and implements it into the overall design. The Schematic Design is a type of “rough draft” of where to put things and how things need to function.
This stage is where a plan is put into place and is known as Design Development. From this, we create floor plans using cool programs like AutoCAD and Revit. We choose furniture, paint colors, finishes, and color schemes based on the designer/client consultation from Stage 1. This stage may take several meetings in order to make sure the design plan fits the clients, style, budget and lifestyle.This is where things start to come together and the vision is revealed.
Construction Documentation. This sounds super boring, because it is, but it is also very important. This process is when the designer takes the plan developed in Stage 3 and puts it in terms it can be understood by construction workers. This is typically where the general contractor is hired and brought on (if you choose to use one). The designer creates elevations, tile drawings, specification sheets, and adds specific details to each room. Sometimes this can take a while because the designer has to notate every last detail. From what paint is used on the trim, to how the tile is going to be finished in the bathroom renovation, there are a lot of details that need to be considered in order to make the project run smoothly.
Construction, this is where all of the hard work and planning come to life. The contractor takes their team and goes to work. They pull carpet, lay tile, paint the walls, and even build special details laid out by the designer such as built-ins or fireplaces. All of the ideas in the client and designers head are now slowly revealing themselves among the dust of the renovation. The kitchen cabinets function perfectly in the space with glistening quartz counter tops ready to help bake some delicious cookies for the kids. The new wood floors will now withstand all the running jumping and playing. While the tile is laid just right to bring the interest you need into your new warm and inviting home.
Once all of the construction is done and the dust has been cleaned up, the furniture will be placed and rooms styled with even more detail. Everything has its place and is set entirely to scale. The sofa fabric is just how you imagined, soft warm and cozy oh, and durable too. The pillows are perfectly fluffed and chopped in each corner of the sofa, bringing color pattern and texture into the room. The rug is evenly spaced and pulls everything together. This is what makes you fall in love with interior design all over again.
If you are looking to hire a designer, hopefully you can get an idea of what He/She will be able to do for you from this blog post. One benefit of hiring a designer is to take all the stress away from the client having to make all the decisions and to take over all of the planning and construction. The designer also has, what some would say a sixth sense, or a talent of designing a room that looks amazing and well put together. All you (the client) have to do is sit back and watch as your vision comes to life. And of course, reap the benefits of living in your newly renovated home.
If you are looking to become a designer, the field is very rewarding, but a lot more work than most anticipate. As a designer, you need to be very detail oriented and thorough. It takes a lot of time planning all the details, looking for the perfect furniture to fit the clients style, and organizing the whole project. However, the end result is so satisfying it really makes all your hard work pays off!
Now, I hope this was helpful in creating a vision of what the design process is like. Please leave your questions or comments below. And thank you for reading!