If you want your website to look good, then it is best to hire a graphic designer and a great web developer. Why then, would you assume that you can simply put your working and living spaces together all by yourself? If you want to create a cohesive look and feel for the spaces in which you live and work, a professional is needed there, too. Trust us on this: doing your own Feng shui rarely works out.
We’ve talked before about the different factors that go into hiring a graphic designer for your web and marketing materials. In this article, we are going to teach you about hiring and working with an interior designer in four quick steps. In many respects, the process is similar, but there are some things that make the process unique.
Know Thy Budget
Just like anything else, knowing what you can afford to spend on your living and working spaces is important. Unlike with a web or graphic designer, though, your budget won’t just pay for your designer’s time. Your budget also needs to be able to cover whatever it is that you and your designer want to buy (decorations, linens, and furniture) to create your space. If you have a taste for the higher end and/or designer pieces, then you’ll want to make sure that your operating budget has room in it for those things. Sometimes you do not always know these answers or even how to put together your budget. Your designer should know how to help there.
Match Your Style
Even if you aren’t sure exactly how you want the space to look, you most likely have a vague idea of what sort of style you want your design to embody. Maybe you’re modern and sleek. Maybe you’re into earth tones and pottery. It’s important to have this in mind before you hire a designer because you’ll want to make sure that the designer you hire can design in that style. Like top Houston interior design professional Sarah Elizabeth says on her website: “The dream always begins with a need.”
It is true that your designer is going to have some ideas and that part of a designer’s job is to come up with things you wouldn’t have thought of yourself. Even so, most designers require at least a few parameters in which they are expected to work.
The All Important Portfolio
When you hire a web designer you want to look at the different sites she has worked on, right? It is important to look at the spaces your potential interior designers have designed as well. Spend some time perusing each potential designer’s portfolio before setting up a meeting. The good news is that most professionals make their interior design portfolios available online. You can look at pictures of spaces at your leisure. Sarah says, “If all you see is one style, you’re probably going to get the same thing. Choose someone who knows how to design a lot of different styles and truly listens to their client, then you will be successful.”
Visiting the Spaces
Unlike with web and graphic designers, not all of their work can be perused online or by looking at slides. When you’ve used interior designers’ online portfolios to narrow your hiring field, it’s important to visit as many of the spaces that your candidates have designed as possible. There is a lot that can’t be conveyed in photos. Quality interior designers understand this and will have a list of references that would be happy to show off their spaces to other potential design clients.
When you do visit these spaces pay attention to how you feel while you are in them. Do you feel comfortable? Do you feel inspired? Do you feel judged or claustrophobic? Your first reaction to a space is important. If all you want is to get out of there, you probably won’t want to work with that space’s designer.
These are just a few of the different criteria that go into hiring your interior designer. If you’ve ever hired someone to build a living or working space for you, share your process in the comments!