Our 9′ x 15′ design studio floor plan!
Interior Design is a process. It can be overwhelming, expensive and fraught with error. You can do it yourself if you are confident of you taste, have the resources, an infinite attention to detail, lots of time, love decision making and more important problem solving, and a courageous heart. Or you can work with a designer that can make the process manageable and even fun with a splendid result.
The collaboration, and it should be that, begins with an initial meeting, where dreams and wishes, needs and function are discussed along with budget and expectations.
This is where you share the size and scope of your project, and your sense of comfort and style. Budget should be discussed. Some people think this will encourage the designer to take advantage of that amount, that isn’t true at all, it is essential to determine if the budget is realistic for what you want to achieve. If not, it is your decision whether to scale back, do the project in stages or increase the budget. I am happy to accommodate. Discuss how you like to be charged. Options are hourly consultation and discount on purchases, or a flat fee that includes one fee for the hours estimated to provide you with the “recipe” for your project. Both options include floor plans, selections of fabrics, furniture, carpet, paint color and drawings for custom built ins as discussed. Purchasing can be done by you or a combination of you and designer. The industry has been moving towards the flat fee model and our design firm has embraced that. We are both then attuned to budget and time.
I encourage clients to bring pictures from magazines and books, shows a sense of your style and likes . Can also show what you aren’t comfortable with. It is a reference point to begin . You should also like your designer’s taste. While our clients’ rooms always look like themselves and not me as designer, there’s a sensibility that you embrace and a style with the designer you choose. You should also feel a sense of rapport with your designer and that should increase over time. I have clients that have come back for over 20 years and the relationship remains a joy.
The length of the project from concept to installation should be discussed and realistic. It depends on manufacturers, and carpenters and installers and of course how quickly you make decisions. In design we are dependent on so many people and relationships to delver the project. I like to install the project all at once, complete with accents and accessories. The client can then choose what they would like to keep but in the moment, it gives them the sense and splendor of the finished room. Voila!