What You Need To Know Before Hiring An Interior Designer

Beautiful new kitchen in a classic country style

Thinking about hiring an interior designer? Well, knowledge is power, so before you get Googling there are a few simple things you should know to avoid you or your designer wanting to tear their hair out and make the process smoother and more enjoyable for everyone.

The role

Firstly, let’s cover what an interior designer actually does. As much as I’d love to spend all day jumping in mountains of cushions, it’s not just about making things “pretty”. Few people realise that designers, such as myself have some knowledge and training in architecture.

Essentially, what our core focus is, is on creating functional and quality spaces for the clients we work with, the fact that it looks amazing is the icing on the cake.

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Be Prepared

Not everyone has a clear idea on what they want, and that’s ok, for some that why they bring in an interior designer in the first place – to unmuddle their brain.

What is helpful, is when you are somewhat prepared and this is where Pinterest comes in handy.

Most of us have already done this, but if you haven’t, jump on Pinterest and create a board to save your images to. It could be an image of a room or simply a swatch of fabric, regardless, if the image conveys the feeling and style you’d like to achieve, save it. Your only limit is your imagination.

This process helps me as a designer to know what lights your fire, but above this, it feeds the conversation between us to look beyond aesthetics and cover the spacial requirements of your space.

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Budget

How much are you willing to invest? And be honest. As a designer I can work with a range of different budgets, what I can’t do is help without this number or at least a range.

Why do we need to know? Because your budget will determine what we can achieve with your space. Kitchens, for example, can cost anywhere from 30k to 200k depending on factors like layout, materials and appliances. So, if you’re on a tight budget, we don’t want to present you with a design you simply can’t afford, just as on the other hand if you’re investing at the top we’ll present a high-end design.

Trust the Process

It’s important to approach your designer with an open mind and enjoy the process. That’s why you hired a professional in the first place.

Don’t be fooled by the magic of tv, achieving good design takes time so be prepared with a realistic timeline and don’t micromanage. When micromanagement occurs, no one is happy. As designers, our job is to not work against with, but work with you to achieve not only what you want, but a result that is cohesive and functional.

Experienced designers also know what to prioritise to get the best result. Plus, we can save you from making costly and time-consuming mistakes.

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How Involved Would You Like us to be?

This is a key point as the level of our involvement can make a huge difference to the final result. Having your designer involved throughout the process is the recommended path to take as we will bring in our preferred trades and oversee the project for quality, budget, timeline and generally taking the stress off your shoulders.

So, before you select your designer it’s important to ask if they offer project management. If they don’t be prepared to be given a set of plans that you need to run with.

Think about longevity

I can’t stress this enough, AVOID TRENDS! When you’re making a large investment, you want it to last, not end up looking like a bad flashback to the 90’s. This is where a designer can come in handy as we can come up with solutions that you’ll love, that will also give you increased value and longevity.

But, if you do fall head over heels for a certain trend, introduce it in small doses such as cushions and decorative pieces. That way you’re not going to blow the budget if you decided to change it.

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