Making The Most Of Your Smart Decision To Hire An Interior Designer

So you’ve decided to hire an Interior Designer–good move! Now what? Before you start planning your “reveal” party, you’ll need a basic understanding about the process to ensure that you get the most design for your dollar and that you have a fun and fabulous experience, no matter what type of project is ahead of you.

You’ll need to learn the basics of choosing the right design professionals, establishing a budget, outlining the details of the contract, considering your lifestyle and communicating your challenges.

Choosing the Right Designer: Beyond the Portfolio

Professionally trained Interior Designers have undergone extensive training in the various elements of modern and historical design, art and architecture. They have a basic foundation of knowledge that allows them to develop concepts in a variety of styles that range from traditional, contemporary, art deco, eclectic–or a combination of several styles.

That being said, not every designer’s talent is right for every project. For yours, you’ll want to choose someone whose portfolio “speaks” to you in a positive way. As with every profession, designers tend to develop personal styles that carry over into their projects. It could be the sense of clarity and order you see in the furniture arrangements, or maybe it’s a color palette that’s used in a unique way. It could be the modern touches worked seamlessly into a roomful of antiques, or the interesting textures of the fabrics.

Referrals are the best way to find a designer, so if the home of a friend or colleague appeals to you, by all means ask them for the designer’s number! You can also visit Web sites to get a better feel for the designer’s talent and personal style. Expect to spend a bit of time on the phone discussing your project with the designer and/or completing a questionnaire that will give them a better feel for your tastes and your project prior to the kickoff meeting.

You’re looking for someone you instantly trust and respect, who communicates excitement about your project, no matter how big or small, and who trusts and respects you as well. After all, this person is transforming your most sacred and cherished space!

Establishing a Realistic Budget

Everyone has a budget, so don’t feel bad about setting yours in stone…or tile, or brick. No matter what the amount, your designer should help you get the best value and the highest quality possible. Be wary of anyone that summarily dismisses your grand ideas based on budget alone: A first-rate designer will work hard to achieve your key design goals, perhaps by spreading the job out over time or suggesting alternative solutions for your project.

A great benefit of using a professional designer is that she has access to materials unavailable to the general public, so no matter what your budget, your home will feel unique and very “you.”

Your designer will also manage the entire process, whether it involves space planning, lighting design, purchasing, ordering, selecting finishes or monitoring the construction and installation of the project elements.

Outlining Terms of the Contract

Make sure you read and sign an official contract before any money exchanges hands or work begins. In addition to the legal aspects, a contract summarizes the plans you’ve been discussing such as your budget, design fees, accountability regarding subcontractors (painters, carpet layers, etc.).

You’ve selected the designers and signed the contract – now comes the fun part!

Considering Your Lifestyle

Your home environment should complement and support the way you and your family really live – or really want to live. For example, if you’re starting a home-based business, you might turn your cluttered garage into a functional office. If your spouse loves to cook, you might knock down a wall so the under-used formal dining room becomes part of the kitchen. Many families make the mistake of letting the layout of the home dictate their activities vs. reorganizing the space to embrace their lifestyles.

To ensure that your designer understands how you live now and how you want to live, share as many details with her as you can. Also share your personal tastes so she can incorporate them into the designs. If you hate plaid, tell her now, before she gets too deep into the first draft.

To help you better prepare yourself, answer these questions before you have your first meeting with the designer:

  • Are you a creative person? In what ways does your home limit your creativity or your hobbies?
  • Do you like the present color palette? Does it need updating?
  • Are they any rooms that feel cramped or stuffy? Any rooms that feel empty, cold or unwelcoming?
  • Is adequate, well-organized storage a problem? Can you find things when you need them?
  • Are your bathrooms functional, pleasing spaces? Do you or family members have special needs (e.g. grab bars, easy-entrance shower stalls, etc.)?
  • As you walk through your rooms, jot down your favorite qualities about each. Do you like the proportions? Is there adequate ventilation and lighting throughout your house?
  • Are there any rooms that you don’t use regularly? Could any of these rooms be used for more than one function? Could any of these rooms be used for a completely different function?
  • Does your home balance open space and private areas?
  • Does the entryway do its job of setting the stage for the rest of your home by welcoming guests and making a statement about the people who live there? If you normally come into your home through the garage, does that area welcome you?

Focus on Your Challenges

A designer works best when you share your “wish list,” express your ideas, and then keep an open mind. That means communicating how you want to live in the space and then entrusting the designer to make it happen. After all, you hired this person for her experience, talent and vision!

For example, one homeowner hired a designer to help her reorganize her tiny office so she could be more productive. Instead, the designer suggested that she move her entire operation downstairs, into the den she used once every two months to watch movies. She did, tripling her space and doubling her productivity in just three months.

Contrary to TV, where designers admonish clients for questioning their plans, real-life designers understand that you’re the person who ultimately needs to love the space. They want you to be happy and want you to give your input so you’re absolutely thrilled with the results (and so you’ll recommend them to your friends)! That’s why they do so much probing upfront about your tastes and how you live, then incrementally present their ideas throughout the process.

Hiring a designer is like giving a gift to yourself! You made the smart decision to hire an Interior Designer, you’ve been smart about the planning process, and now you can rest assured that the time, money and energy you spend returns truly smart, stunning results!

Latest Interior Design Trends to Beautify Your House

Living in a beautiful house is a dream many of us cherish for long. However, only a few among us take steps in the right direction and realize the goal of beautifying the home. Those who do look for latest interior design trends so that the spaces can start looking charming and inspired corners are transformed completely. Such home owners want neighbors and relatives to take note of the interior designing work and thus, search for ideas in magazines, on the web and on TV etc. They also make sure the interior design trends fit well into the trends of the modern times and meet societal ethos.

Let’s look at some of features of latest interior design trends –

Latest trend don’t fade out soon

Latest trends in interior designing won’t change soon as they’re quite unlike those in the fashion and tech industries. Rather, they stay in there and gradually get to people and grow on people across societies. They will be in vogue for years and you can find houses accepting them and assimilating their virtues in a slow manner.

They blend traditional and modern ideas together

Latest interior design trends are not any unique discovery or concept; rather, they are a coming together of the merits of the traditional and modern ideas. For example, the use of wooden materials is growing across modern structures and it’s like going back to the classical touch. And home owners now prefer small yet cozy spaces which was norm during the 60s and 70s.

Greater use of natural materials and colors

It’s true that home owners today do a greater use of natural materials and colors in beautifying the interiors of their house. In fact, hand-crafted items are also a fad these days among people aspiring for beautiful home interiors. Similarly, the use of modern geometry and colorful texture is on the up in interior designing. Not to forger, the use of glass or other see-through objectives is rising up steadily for transforming the interiors.

A touch of nature in design

Calm and cosy atmosphere is the latest desire for home owners when they design the interiors of the house. They want the spaces to get a cleaner and greener look at the cost of flashy ornamentation and gaudy enhancements. Using greener and natural materials or options to bring in a touch of nature is surely the latest trend with interior designing. This is why wood and green carpets are used more these days in interiors.

Hand-crafted items more in demand

Let’s admit it straightway – people want classy look and feel. They can vintage furniture and accessories, preferably hand-crafted ones to grace the interiors. The focus is to lend the interior a dash of artistic craftsmanship through the use of items hand-crafted with perfection. So, you can feel the difference with the way customized furniture are used these days.

More natural light, less dark shades

As per latest interior design trends, the focus is shifted to more natural lights and less dark shades. So, only those objects and materials are used that bring in more light and take out dark shades. Similarly, home owners today prefer bold patterns, objects with smooth edges, accessories with soft edges and bright primary colors.

Engaging Technology is Key to the Future of Great Interior Design

With nearly four out of five Americans online visiting sites, the internet clearly represents an increasingly important channel for design studios. Technology is in constant evolution and we want to explore ways to make it easy for customers to engage and get inspired and eventually translate and change their homes with our help.

For us these are the most inspirational times because it pushes us to make things everyday and to make things very simple for our customers to understand and at the same time provide them with the right tools to achieve a great environment. Many interior design firms and studios have great interior design services online such as: design styles centers, paint color palettes, paint techniques, room planners, furniture recommendations and customized floor plans which clients could access and engage via the internet, but more importantly these services are affordable most for a fraction of the price you would pay for a traditional interior design on site service.

We find that many customers go to the web to find inspiration and to engage in conversation. The intersection of creativity and technology creates a great venue for providing great interior design services, with easy to follow tools and many inspirations at affordable prices. We find that most customers that lean towards online services are looking for services from a professional interior designer and are willing to engage in some of the work themselves. Many do it yourself types find that getting recommendations and guidance of a professional designers is a key to achieving the look there are after and if budget is a factor this is a great alternative to creating the interior they always wanted.

We know that consumers are being very careful about their spending and online studios offer a great service that is affordable while working with their client budget. An despite the challenges facing interior designers, many are finding that by extending with confidence great interior design services online they could offer unique propositions at budget friendly prices, while engaging in a straight forward culture, to be open to new ideas, constant improvement, and team work they offer great interior design accessible to anybody.

In the end, we like to shop. But with people spending more time in their home or working from home, more will choose to make their home more beautiful and functional to best suit their lifestyles. Many will surf the web for their next room makeover or home renovation and we are excited for the creative design process of a client space and homes via the internet.

Challenging times spark creativity, ingenuity and months ahead show great promise. Digital innovations now offer us myriad opportunities to provide astonishing amounts of ideas and information online, interactive tools, and powerful dialogue online. Moving forward, we will continue to showcase stylish lives and dazzling spaces.