I’ve been in many conversations with people that question the relevance or need of an Interior decorator or designer. “Surely people can do it themselves?” I have been asked countless times! Well… yes I’m sure they can! And many have tried…. And then called me or a colleague to come pick up where they went wrong or ran out of steam. So I have compiled 9 reasons why I think it’s a great idea to bring in the professional.
1. They save you money (and who doesn’t like to save a buck or two!)
Interior decorators/ designers are not only for the rich and famous! Contrary to belief, in the long run, a well-chosen decorator can actually save you money. A good decorator/ designer needs to also have some decent project management skills so that they can help you plan and co ordinate the stages of your project effectively. This way they can hopefully reduce those expensive mistakes often made by renovators. Of course, unexpected things do happen in every project but with a good plan these can be reduced as much as possible.
2. They help formulate a budget and stick to it
For some renovators the budget is a scary monster for two reasons. There are those that have no idea what is realistic costing and don’t know what to set as a budget. There are others that know exactly what they want to spend but are uncertain of how to allocate and divide it. This is where the designer comes in. Being ‘in the business’ they are familiar with the current costs and can set a realistic budget for their clients. By spending time with clients and assessing the clients needs and wants, the designer can then divide the budget accordingly setting a fairly detailed budget break down.
3. They save you time (and time is money!)
Quite a large number of my clients’ stories are similar…. They have spent countless hours and many litres of petrol searching for those ‘perfect’ items for their home. When they get home they realised that nothing really gels, the scale/ sizing is totally wrong and/ or they don’t actually like what hey have bought! When you take this into account then hiring a pro that will do this all for you is a timesaving no brainer! For the most part, samples are taken to the clients’ home and pictures sent via message or email. Every now and then a client may need to meet at a show room but it is then a planned meeting at specific places – no endless driving around!
4. They’re good at liaising (most of us really do like to talk shop)
In a well run project, the architect, decorator, landscaper, builder, and/or any other contractor involved, all need to be on the same page. It happens more often than not, that the designer co-ordinates all the above ensuring that the end vision is achieved as smoothly as possible. This is crucial in managing time and money.
5. They have contacts
Decorators and designers have industry related connections. This makes sourcing of fabrics, furnishings and building supplies etc. a whole lot easier than it is for the client. Designers also have access to many wholesalers and trade only dealers thereby ensuring some unique pieces in your home - pieces that you wouldn’t be able to just pick up off the shelf at the local retailer. Often designers can negotiate better deals with contractors and suppliers because of their relationship.
6. A trained and experienced eye (and hopefully a natural flair too!)
Designers have a tendency to see things that you don’t. Sometimes it may be as small as changing the position of furniture that dramatically changes the feel of a space. We are trained to know more than just ‘pretty things’ but also about positioning, scale, textures, colour, harmony and juxtapositions. With these in mind a designer can maximize the spaces aesthetics, functionality and efficiency.
7. They’re on top of trends but won't compromise your style
Those in the industry are exposed to the new trends almost daily! Reputable designers and decorators will make sure they have their ear to the ground when it comes to what’s happening in the design world. Because of this exposure we are able to bring these new trends into the concepts of our designs. But herein lies the trick – a good designer will never compromise the style of their client. Armed with the knowledge of what is new, we subtly merge our clients style with newer trends – never losing sight of their character. In this way we can for example, bring an old traditional home into the new century while still staying true to its beauty.
8. They bring focus to your vision
Even naturally creative people with a amazing style and taste often need help in directing their décor dreams. Lets face it – there are so many options out there for fabrics, furnishings, fittings, finishes, etc. that it can become overwhelming. The designer will direct your vision and break it down into a manageable project. The designer will also know which contractors are out there and which are the better to use. Often times clients have an idea of what they want but are not sure who they need to contact to deliver that vision.
9. They increase the value of your home
I will never suggest something to my clients that will jeopardise the value of their home in any way. The return on investing in the interiors of your home is not only comfort and improved lifestyle but also the fact that it makes your home more appealing to potential buyers when you and if you decide to sell.
The designer should consider how renovations or additions will affect the lighting and feel of the home once done and what spaces are and could be used for. A sense of cohesion and flow must never be compromised. A designer should also be able to guide you on what will give you the most bang for your buck with the allocation of your budget – especially when you are thinking of selling!