Do Interior Designers Really Need a Degree?

Many budding interior designers grapple with the dilemma of paying a small fortune for a design degree. But of course, there is the tempting idea of employing other affordable alternatives – like watching YouTube tutorials and building a portfolio from scratch. As an aspiring interior designer, you should be thinking beyond sustaining your dream. Dreams do not feed people and pay the bills – jobs do. There are good jobs in interior designing and they are available for the qualified.

So how do people who hire interior designers define “qualification”? Is a strong portfolio enough? Or is a Bachelor’s Degree in Interior Design a key factor to unlocking your future career?

Let us discuss your options:

How do you plan to begin your career?

Without a degree:

Starting your interior design career without guidance is like piloting a plane for the first time without training, auto-pilot, or GPS. To avoid an epic crash, you either need to have an extreme amount of genius, good luck, or both. Practicing the software skills you need may not be the largest challenge. But if you have plans to start freelancing on your own, you will lose out to students who took hands-on modules that taught them how to work with materials and industry machinery. This path is not recommended unless you have contacts in the industry and someone who is willing to teach you the ropes for free.

With a degree:

If you want some guidance from professionals by joining a big design agency, you will need the qualifications – Especially so when you want to work in competitive countries like Singapore. Having a degree also allows you to branch out into teaching the subject after you have gained at least five years of relevant working experience. Not to mention, graduating from a top design school looks good on your portfolio. It also boosts the confidence of your future clients whether you intend to join a design company or start your own freelancing services.

Do you have the skills and determination to make your own portfolio?

A design portfolio shows off your skills to potential employers. Whether you choose to go through a design course or learn on your own, most people will begin with close to zero knowledge or technique. To be a competent interior designer, you will need to master the following skills:

– 3D software like 3D Max Studio

– Various Adobe Creative Suite software like Photoshop and Illustrator. Web designing programs like Dream Weaver are helpful, but not necessary.

– Auto CAD for 2D and 3D works.

– Ability to work with traditional tools like pencils, rulers and other drawing instruments for concept sketches or detailed blueprints.

– Space planning, decorating, and finding potential beauty in a variety of places.

An ideal portfolio contains around 15-20 pieces that display the skills stated above.

It is possible to create an interior design portfolio without formal training. However, degree students have significantly higher likeliness of producing works of better quality because they have guidance of professional lecturers. Another plus of attending interior design classes at a good design school is that you simply learn much more. You will meet people who inspire or challenge you to do your best. And also, you will understand more about industry practices that are not available in textbooks. All your experiences in school will reflect in your portfolio. Going to school is one of the fastest ways to grow as a professional interior designer who is capable of handling multiple paid assignments.

How can you improve your career prospects in interior design?

If you already have a Diploma and relevant working experience, apply for a top-up degree to increase your chances of getting that raise you want. If you have just graduated from high school or want a career switch, look out for intensive courses so that you can gain both an Advanced Diploma and Degree in three years.

Looking for a fresh perspective? Consider searching for design schools abroad. Studying overseas looks good on your résumé because it shows your ability to live away from your comfort zone. It also increases your chances of success if you study in the country you want to work in.

In a nutshell, going to school gives you skills to make a great portfolio that can give you entry to a company that values design ability. A degree comes in useful when you want to avoid your job application being binned by HR personnel of large interior design agencies. Art directors normally screen through works only after a candidate has been shortlisted by their company’s HR department.

Interior Design Online – The Easiest and Most Affordable Way to Design Your Dream Home!

Are you thinking about remodeling your home or are you perhaps just looking for a couple of simple and inexpensive ideas to improve your home into a better looking place where you could truly enjoy the time with your family and friends? In this article we will explain you how you can get the designer help to turn your home into an amazing place, for a minimal cost! The answer lies in getting online interior design service which will help you transform your home into a most wonderful and enjoyable place. You can get the help of a licensed online interior designer for a minimal fee, up to 10 times cheaper than any regular interior designer, prices per design start at as low as 50$!

Now everybody can afford the help of an interior designer, because everybody deserves a beautiful home to live in! And you get to work with your very own designer that will answer all your design problems from the convenience of your home, at the time that is most suitable for you!

But you might ask why would you hire designer in the first place – why not just design your home on your own? A lot of people are sceptic about getting help of interior designer because they think designers are too expensive, do not put enough attention to their clients wishes or because they simply think they can design their home on their own. With the introduction of interior design online help, the prices of interior design help became so low that practically everybody can afford them. Our designers also put special attention to our clients wishes which are our first and foremost priority!

The designer help can make a BIG difference in how your home turns out. If you do not design you home well, it can turn out totally different then what you had wished for and as a place where you simply won’t feel comfortable living in! Your home is the place where you should relax from your everyday stress at work and truly enjoy the time with your family so it is really important that it is designed well and has a nice, relaxing and enjoyable atmosphere. Interior designers study interior design for 6 years at college and they know exactly how to turn your home into an amazing place!

Designer can help you make all your wishes about your desired home a reality with simple and inexpensive ideas, he can make you computer drawings of exactly how your new home will look like so that you can see in advance if it works well for you or if you would like to make some changes so in the end, interior designer can actually save you LOTS of money and broken nerves!

So how does Interior Design Online work?

You work with your very own licensed and experienced designer. He can help you with just a simple design, like color, furniture arrangements or lighting suggestions for your room, but he can also make you a complete room renovation design and design you your room from scratch. It is completely up to you to decide what kind of design help you would like.

IT WORKS AS SIMPLE AS THIS:

STEP 1: You simply browse through the wide variety of available design packages on the web site of online home design service and choose the one that works best for you.

There are so many to choose from you will definitely be able to find the perfect one for you. You can see exactly what includes the design package that you choose and the exact price, which is truly the best there is on the market today. Be careful to check if the design service you choose to work with specifies their costs well enough to make sure that in the end you won’t be paying a lot more for the design then you anticipated in the beginning.

Once you order your design online, the designer will ask you to send him a couple of pictures of the room the design is for and ask you a couple of simple questions about your design problems and the desired look you would like to create in your room.

STEP 2: After a couple of days you will receive your room design by email. VOILA! It works as simple as this. If you wish so, your design can also include links to actual pieces of furniture available for purchase online, so you can buy the items online and finish the project yourself. In this way you will get a classy and elegant designer look for your room and a room that will truly look amazing and where you will be able to truly relax and enjoy your life, for a minimal cost!

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!