Maybe you just bought a new home. Or you’re planning a single room makeover or an entire home renovation. Some clients, especially those taking on their first interior design project, don’t know how or where to begin. That’s where an interior decorator comes in.
Maybe you think it will cost too much or fear you might lose control of your project. In this article, I’ll explain the reasons why it’s a good idea to hire an interior decorator for your home improvement project.
What an Interior Decorator Does
First, I’ll explain the difference between an interior decorator and an interior designer. For some projects, all you might need is a decorator.
Interior decorators don’t make architectural changes to a space. They help determine its look and feel by selecting and placing furniture and other decorative elements such as paint, textiles, window treatments, lighting and flooring, handling pretty much everything within the confines of how a room is structured. They are either hired to update an existing space or after any structural changes and renovations are completed. While they don’t usually work directly with general contractors and architects, they often collaborate with furniture companies or workshops that make window treatments and other accessories. An interior decorator’s job is to meet with clients to determine what they are trying to achieve with their project and to work within their budget to bring their vision to life.
Many interior decorators take courses focusing on disciplines such as space planning, room layouts and furniture styles in order to get certification to authenticate their practices. Organizations such as Certified Interior Decorators International (CID) and the Interior Design Society (IDS) offer programs and certification, although certification is not required for someone to work as an interior decorator.
A typical Interior Decorating Professional Certificate program gives students the skills and knowledge to have a successful career as an interior decorator. Classes include instruction in architecture, furniture style, and color theory as well as the basic business skills needed to be successful, as well as the principles and elements of design, room layout and space planning, and learning about wall and window treatments, textiles, flooring and lighting.
An Interior Decorator Will Save You Money
While an interior decorator’s fees might at first seem intimidating, think about the value you will get compared to the amount of money you will spend. A good decorator will save you money in the long run if the job is done right from the start, helping you avoid costly mistakes and make decisions that can increase the value of your home.
A decorator can help you stay within your budget while making sure your project stays on schedule, avoiding expensive delays. He or she might help you choose the materials that are a good investment, knowing where to find the best discounts, and understanding when to cut corners and when it makes sense to spend a little extra.
A Decorator Will Save You Time
Every design project, even small ones, is more time-consuming that you might think. If you’re a busy professional or a parent, managing a design project can be stressful, and take up way too many hours in a day.
An interior decorator will spare you the time and headache of trying to manage the project yourself. A designer will also narrow down the overwhelming choices among hundreds of items, from furniture, art and accessories to colors, fabrics and finishes, making it easier for you to make quick and efficient decisions.
A Decorator Has Contacts and Sources
Many interior decorators have connections with other industry professionals, such as custom furniture makers and millworkers. They also have long-standing relationships with sources and vendors, many of whom carry products that are not available to the general public.
You’re Hiring an Expert and an Advocate
Your interior decorator represents you, which means prioritizing your needs and desires, as well as your timeline and budget. Your designer is your advocate, working alongside other professionals on the project to make sure that the final outcome is exactly the one you want.
Interior designers can assist with material selection. They understand the pros and cons as well as the possibilities and limitations of the thousands of items that are available, and can visualize how they can best be used in your home. They inspect all items after delivery to make sure they are up to industry standards, and if something arrives damaged or doesn’t function properly, they are responsible for its return or exchange, which could be stressful if you tried to do it yourself.
For a design project of any size, it pays to hire an interior design professional. Your designer will help guide you through the entire process, whether it’s a single room makeover or complete renovation, orchestrating things every step of the way.