If you’ve never hired an interior designer, you probably have a few questions about how the entire process works. What do I need? Should I have an idea of everything that I want? Is my designer going to walk into my house and laugh at me?
Well, before you overwhelm yourself with questions, we’d like to help you out! We’ve compiled a list of the most important things to know going into an initial consultation with your interior designer. If you follow these tips, you’ll be ready for your designer to guide you through the steps of having the house of your dreams!
- Know what you plan on using your space for: In every home, function is just important as form. You want to redo your living room but do you want to keep it a living room? Do you want to convert part of it into an office? Or do you want a place for the kids to play with their Legos and crayons? Knowing this kind of information can help your designer make the most of your space and optimize every square inch of your home, right down to how many chairs you’ll need and exactly where they need to be placed.
- Have a budget: We know—budgets are scary. Really scary! But if you’re serious about rehabbing your home and making it your personal sanctum—or your no-holds-barred party space!—having a budget in mind before you meet your designer will do one of two things. The first is that it will help your designer understand the bounds within which they can shop for you, bringing beauty into your home for a price that you’re comfortable with. Second, it will help you set a price range for you to follow throughout the process, so you can establish peace of mind for yourself from the very beginning. Budgets can be scary but when they’re going towards a home renovation, they’re just one small step to getting the perfect space you’ve always dreamed of.
- Think of what style you like: Now, we understand this can be trickier. You might say, “Well, you’re the designer! Can’t you choose what I like?” While we could certainly dream up the most stunning, contemporary-looking home, if you’re more of a wrought-iron and velvet person and we put minimalist furniture and modern art on the wall— to say you would be less than content would probably be an understatement. So, be ready to tell your designer what kind of styles and looks make your heart flutter. Printing out pictures of rooms you enjoy, cutting out magazine pages, or even creating an Ideabook on Houzz.com are all things you can do to help your designer get an idea of what your taste leans towards. It’s your dream house—your designer is there to bring your vision to life!
- Make sure you’re prepared: A lot of time and energy can go into renovating a house. Unlike those episodes of HGTV, the work on your home can’t be completed in hour-long blocks (although we wish that were the case!). Before you start a project with your designer (and eventually your contractors), make sure you’re prepared for the job. That means understanding that your home will be dusty, that there might be considerable noise pollution, and that it will take longer than just one day to get the dream fireplace you’ve always wanted! Don’t feel daunted though—if you’re prepared for the process of renovating your home, the actual process itself will seem like a breeze!
While all of this might seem like a lot to absorb, they’re necessary steps for being prepared to hire a designer for the first time. Following the above points, you will certainly help your interior designer easily draw up the best plans for your home, giving you the magazine-perfect master bedroom, living room, or kitchen that you’ve always envisioned!
Alicia Friedmann Interior Design, LLC