How to choose an interior designer? How to find an interior decorator? Well, if you’re thinking about hiring an interior designer, you might be finding it a bit daunting, and we don’t blame you.
Entrusting the design of your home to someone else can be a big step, especially if it’s something you’ve always done yourself. Spending money on an interior designer can also be a huge commitment, but no fear. We understand, and to help you get closer to the home you’ve always dreamed of, we’ve compiled a list of helpful tips for choosing an interior designer to make the process as easy as possible for you.
Locate Some Interior Designers
Before you figure out which interior designer is the right one for you, you need to find them. But how to find an interior decorator? Great question! There are lots of ways you can compile a list of interior designers, and its good practice to contact different designers you’ve found in different places, so you get a solid selection of designers to choose from.
One of the best places to start is on a search engine; it’s as easy as typing in ‘local interior decorators’ and hitting the enter button. This search should bring up a list of local interior decorators so you can begin with those who are close to you. If the list you’ve compiled of local interior decorators isn’t doing it for you, you can branch out from there. If you’re social media savvy, use social media to find designers; jump onto Pinterest in search of an amazing interior designer, or search through hashtags on Instagram (this is good for inspiration too).
Sometimes old-fashioned ways are just as good; it doesn’t all have to be done online. You can browse through interior design magazines and pick out the names of the designers who stand out to you, as well as contacting friends and acquaintances to see if anyone has any recommendations. Once you’ve got an interior designer shortlist together, you can start the process of making a decision.
One of our best tips on how to choose an interior designer is to get inspired. Come up with a few ideas yourself and get a grasp on what’s fashionable at the moment, what’s classic, and what you want to see in your home.
Browsing through Pinterest is the perfect and easy way to find inspiration, as is looking up interior design hashtags on Instagram, or flipping through interior design magazines. If you have some idea of what you’re after, you’ll find it much easier to choose the perfect interior designer, trust us.
Get to Know Your Interior Designer
If it’s your first time doing this, and you have no idea how to choose an interior designer, one of the best ways is to simply get to know them. Spend time learning about them and their career, learn about what they stand for and what’s important to them and what they like and dislike about their job.
Lots of other questions will come from getting to know your interior designer, and it helps you build rapport and create a good relationship (which is essential in collaborating with your designer).
Don’t just stop with your proposal from one interior designer. Make sure you speak to a few and see what each of them come up with before making your decision. This’ll give you the best idea of which designer you’ll work best with, which you feel has the best ideas and which has captured your vision best.
You’ll see things you like and don’t like when comparing interior decorator proposals, making this a great way of getting to know what you want. Don’t shy around asking for more designs and ideas from your interior designer and don’t be afraid to speak your mind.
Check the Price
It’s all well and good choosing the perfect designer, but what about the perfect price? And how much does it cost to hire an interior designer anyway? Make sure you’re getting a good deal by comparing quotes and prices from one interior designer to another and compare the service you’re getting.
The cheapest option may not always be the best option – you may get more for your money with one of the more expensive quotes, so go through them with a fine-toothed comb and ensure you are getting plenty of bang for your buck. Comparing also gives you an idea of how much an interior designer is charging on average, which is particularly important if you’re hiring an interior designer on a budget.
Ask for a Portfolio
Check out the portfolio of your interior designer – have a look at the breadth of their previous work. From this, you’ll be able to check out their history of designs and evaluate the scope of their previous work.
You’ll also be able to judge their level of professionalism by doing this (and it’s good for ideas too). You can ask your interior designer for extra references too, enabling you to find out what your interior decorator was like to work with from other people.
Check Out Their Interior Decorators
Interior designers usually never work alone and come equipped with a team to help them problem solve. You should be as discerning with their team members as you are your interior designer. After all, these are going to be the people working in your home, so you’ll want to make sure you’re comfortable with them being around.
Get to know a bit about them; how long they’ve been an interior decorator, how long they’ve worked with the team and how much experience they have.
Look Them Up Online
Another one of our fail-proof tips on how to choose an interior designer is to look them up online and on social media. Tap their name into a search engine and see if they have a website boasting a portfolio; browsing through this will give you a great idea about their eye, how they do business, and what’s important to them.
You might also come across reviews from previous customers, which are always worth a look when you’re thinking about hiring someone for any role. If they have a social media presence and are active on platforms such as Pinterest, Instagram or Facebook, you can use these to examine their previous work, as well as the comments people leave on their photos. It might just be that make or break moment to help you narrow down your decision when your designer has an online presence and is happy to show off their work to the world.
Know Your Budget
Be aware of how much you have to spend, and whether that amount is flexible. Having an amount in mind will help you rule out an interior designer who is too expensive straight away. If you have to work within a budget, make sure your designer is aware of this, and that there is no room for movement on it. Any savvy designer should be able to work with your budget if you remain fixed on what the range is, and if they can’t stick to that – then they aren’t right for you. Simple as that.
Making your interior designer aware of your budget from start to end will also help you avoid disappointment when it comes to expensive luxury products. If you can’t have them as an option in the first place, you won’t be able to fall in love with something you can’t afford.
Lead image via Spruce