New Year’s Resolutions
• Drink more water.
• Exercise at least 30 minutes each day.
• Be nicer to my children.
• Finally hire an interior designer to fix what I don’t like about my home.
These are all admirable goals, but we like the fourth option the best. The most frequent reasons we hear for not hiring a professional designer are fear of the cost and fear of losing control. Cast your fear aside. We’re here to avenge the myth that interior designers cost a lot of money and force you to do things you don’t really want to do.
If the only thing we could do for you is help you avoid costly mistakes — such as buying a purple sofa (this really happened) — we’ve already saved you money.
Secondly, if we help you avoid uncomfortable discussions with a spouse who has different ideas on design than you, we’ve kept you from irreparably damaging a relationship.
Thirdly, we have a plethora of contacts for contractors and suppliers that have a proven trust record with us, which can only save you time, money, and emotional strain. So let us help.
Here is an actual quote from a client: “Please help me. My husband and I strongly disagree on the design of our new home. We go to Lowe’s and walk out empty handed and angry. I’m afraid I’m going to hurt him. Can you help us?”
True story. Couples counseling is part of the service.
Who doesn’t want that perfect and “pulled together” home? It’s important that you select a designer that understands your needs and that has a personality you can relate to, who understands your budget, and whom you can trust.
Here is the key to the kingdom. Not every interior designer takes the time to fully understand your vision. Each designer has their individual style, but the truly talented designer puts their preferences aside and focus on only you. You’ve got a limited budget? No problem. We’ve got a huge assortment of resources from which to choose. Hate shopping? We are combat shoppers and will do it for you.
Two important tasks to do before you meet with an interior designer are to establish your interior design style and establish a budget. Also decide what your living style is: casual, cozy, kid-friendly or clutter-free?
Be completely honest about your budget. Don’t be shy about talking about money. Be sure to ask about rates and billing. A combination of hourly rates, flat fees and markup on wholesale costs can be arranged to fit your needs. Perhaps you only want an hourly consultation to tour your home and make suggestions. Isn’t it worth a few hundred dollars to avoid costly mistakes or learn about new affordable alternatives?
A file of ripped out photo pages from magazines helps establish visual goals. If you have a sentimental piece of artwork or furniture to design around, be sure to let the designer know. These items become inspiration for a talented designer.
Also be honest about your opinion. If you don’t get along with or feel that the designer’s approach is not right for you, then speak up. After all, it’s your money.
Once you decide to take the big step, interview one or more designers, review their portfolio and ask for references. Determine how fees are to be structured. Establish the project scope, budget and schedule for completion and sign a contract. Finally, enjoy the process. You’re embarking on an exciting chapter in your life, so be happy.
Happy New Year and thank you for your devoted readership.
& Pamela Blythe