I’ve been running my own business now for about 6 years and throughout that time I’ve streamlined my process and have a clear strategy to how I carry out the design on each project, whether it’s a single room design or a total home renovation.
Essentially the process is similar from the offset.
However many of my clients are new to working with a designer and have no idea of what to expect, perhaps have different expectations or just want to understand how it all works and what part they play. Which is absolutely fine, we all want to know what we get for our buck these days and interior design services is no different.
So it made sense to detail that here, maybe you’re on the fence about hiring a designer, or want to but just not sure what happens etc? Possibly you're considering working with me and want more info on what to expect - well please do read on....
Ok so we’ve agreed a price, signed the contract and got all the paperwork out the way. Then we can begin the fun design journey.
We start with a design meeting and this is where we have an in depth chat, hopefully with a cup of tea/coffee, about the project discussing your vision; what you want to achieve, the parameters of the job and any special requirements. We discuss the dreaded budget and as hard as that conversation can be it’s really instrumental to starting the design in the right way. Having no idea of budget means you could have designs presented to you that are out of reach or it can make you go around in circles and isn’t the best use of the designers time.
we go through design specifics and costs so I know how to proceed after the meeting.
Once the design meeting is complete, all measurements are taken, reference photos and any other relevant info which all forms the brief I work towards from there on in.
I take all that info and digest it and begin to research ideas relating to what was discussed. I create a mood board detailing notes from the meeting to refer back to, include colour scheme ideas, general and more specific ideas such as any joinery details etc as necessary.
We then we review this either via zoom or email…it’s mostly to check I’ve listened well, interpreted your thoughts well but also to throw ideas out there to get your views on how to move the design forwards.
With the nod to go ahead we then get stuck into the design itself.
This is the most time consuming part of the process, in finding the right products that work with the whole scheme, fit with the budget, are the right size, work within the timeframes with delivery timescales etc.
There’s a lot to consider at this stage and gathering as many samples means we can check the colours will work together with other elements, so things like wood, fabrics, paint samples all have to be put together to create the scheme. That perfect table might have to be discounted if the size isn't right, the colours don't work with the other options...it's like doing a giant complicated jigsaw puzzle.
Once we have picked all those lovely pieces and are happy with the colour palette, budget is all on track, we spend time creating the visuals to then get this across to the clients of how it will all sit together, this can be 2D and 3D visuals, floor plans, any joinery drawings and product sheets detailing all chosen options.
All of this all gets put into a presentation ready to talk the client through and explain as best we can the design in our heads..
This is the first time you, the client, gets to see the full design post the initial mood board of ideas - it's both a nerve-racking and exciting time to show you all the hard work of the design we've been nurturing and bringing to life.
Now to get a whole design 100% spot on is absolutely amazing but it doesn't always work out quite this way. Sometimes there are areas open for discussion if there are multiple options available, or perhaps you don't like some options picked out for you and that's absolutely fine. We get that sometimes we may not pick out everything absolutely perfect or you may want to see other options just to make sure - it's all about being adaptable.
Post the design meeting any amends are addressed and the design resubmitted for approval.
What if I am doing a total home renovation?
Well addressing a whole home all at the same time we know is super overwhelming, so we then try to breakdown the process into more manageable chunks. This could be looking at certain rooms at different stages, perhaps looking at the ground floor then the next floor and so on.
We try to remove the overwhelm the best we can - it will feel overwhelming the bigger the project as there are lots and lots of decisions to make but hopefully by going through the design process we refine the options and fine tune the design in a way that doesn't feel quite so daunting.
What if I want a whole redesign?
Well changing a whole design is possible but doesn't fall within the remit of the design process, small amends are absolutely fine but totally changing things changes the game completely. This would incur additional design time but hopefully we never get to that stage.
What if I don't like the design?
Well this will all come down to how well the design meeting goes, how well you communicate to me, giving as much info of what you want, so magazine cut outs, Pinterest boards, who you follow on instagram for inspo - sharing all of this doesn't influence my design but it does open a window into your mind a little to get a better picture of your style and tastes and guides in the right direction.
What if I want to take my time with a whole home design?
We absolutely get this, thinking of your home all in one can be too much for some people. If you're not on a tight deadline and can stomach the longevity of a project rolling into months then it's perfectly fine to let the design progress naturally, so taking smaller steps, fewer decisions at each meeting etc - keeping an open mind and letting the design come together almost organically. I find this can work so well as you get more ideas and inspiration as the process continues and you can potentially enjoy the experience more.
Although if you are pushed for time or just prefer to get it all done in the shortest time possible then this is also fine, it just means it can be more intense and lots of decisions to make in quick succession..as long as you're prepared for that.
I hope this helps explain how I work and also what to expect if you worked with me....hint it will be fun and an enjoyable journey with fabulous results just for you.
Thanks for reading