1. Interior Design is a “Fluffy” Profession
Interior Design is not all about playing with fabric swatches or fluffing throw pillows. Much of what we do involves dealing with how a space functions and is laid out. We also deal with a lot of issues that arise during a remodel, and sort out the nitty gritty details that come along with a design project so that our clients don’t have to. We’re often working on getting replacement pieces of furniture when something comes in damaged, or specifying the exact color and type of grout that should be used in a tiling project. All of these little things have to be thought through carefully for every design project.
2. DIYers Can Do the Same Thing as an Interior Designer
There are many reasons this is untrue. One main reason is that interior designers have resources that others do not have. We have direct relationships with the furniture manufacturers, who also sell to the retail stores that the general public has access to, which gives us more options and control over the furniture we are ordering. We also have sales representatives from these companies, who’s job it is make sure all of our questions are answered – very helpful! Interior designers also often have a formal education in interiors, which is important! We are familiar with building codes and we have a solid knowledge of material properties which clients don’t normally know.
3. An Interior Designer Will Make You Get Rid of Your Great Grandmother’s China Set
No, in fact, we love that you are so attached to your great grammy’s china! A good designer will never push their personal design style into your home, or force you to part with furniture or accessories that are important to you. But make sure you let us know which items are sentimental! We wouldn’t want to spend time (and your money) looking for a new light fixture for your dining room without knowing it once belonged to a great grandparent.
4. You Shouldn’t Tell Your Designer Your Actual Budget
We’ve heard countless people say that you shouldn’t let your interior designer in on the big secret: your budget. This comes from the fear that your designer will take advantage of the number that comes out of your mouth in some way. In actuality, telling your designer your budget is very important! By knowing how much money is available for the project, they can determine if the project needs to be broken into phases, what type of consultation would best suit you, what materials to use, or what contractor would be the best fit. One thing to note, is that your designer is not obligated to accomplish the entire scope of your project within your budget. Obviously, we would love to do so, but if a bid or estimate comes in over what you are comfortable spending, we will let you know right away. That’s where phases come in, or in some cases, we may suggest a consultation for ideas only.
5. Things Happen Quickly
This myth is largely generated by design shows on TV. Design shows are meant to be entertaining, and they have to fit an entire design project into 20 minutes of content. The thing is, most things in the design world move rather slowly. Items are backordered, orders need to be processed, custom cabinets and furniture pieces are built, and things ship in from all over the place! Just to get to the phase of ordering furniture or printing plans for a permit can take 6-8 weeks. If you want to know how long we expect each phase to take, check out this blog post that explains it all.
6. Design is Inexpensive
This is another misconception that has been brought on by design shows. The client on a design show mentions a budget and the designer says, “OK!” and gets to work. Before you know it, the house is completely transformed. Sometimes, dry rot or a roof leak come up unexpectedly and you see the designer break the news to the client over a phone call, during which, the client almost always agrees to the extra cost. No matter the situation, though, the actual expenses are not discussed much. Truth be told, any design project is likely to come in more expensive than you think. We go into budgeting details in this post. It gives a realistic breakdown of what you can expect!
7. Designers Are Only for the Rich & Famous
Although design projects often end up costing more than you would think, using an interior designer is not only something for the rich and famous! Most designers we know got into this business at least in part because they like helping people feel at home in their house! Because we want to help you, we can most often find a way to achieve the home design of your dreams. If your budget will not accommodate all that you want to get done, your designer can help break the project into phases! Also, many designers offer a range of services, and can help you find the service that is right for you! For example, we offer 3 different consultation options, all with different costs. You can check those out here. We would love to meet with you!