How to Choose an Interior Decorator to Enhance Your Home

How to Choose an Interior Decorator to Enhance Your Home

Interior Design
By Mateos Glen Hayes October 18, 2022

Some people think that interior decorating is choosing a new couch for their living room. Others will think of curtains, drapes, and perhaps some overstuffed pillows. Others will think of painting the walls a new, fashionable shade to match their mood and decor. Every one of these details can help you to bring the whole feel of your home together, especially so with the expert guidance of a professional interior decorator. They will be able to take what is a boring space and transform it into something that is not only functional but also shows off your personal taste. 

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Hiring a professional interior decorator can be a hugely beneficial investment in a myriad of ways. You may have a million good interior decorating ideas for how you want your home interior to look, but these will never become reality without putting pen to paper and sketching designs. An interior decorator provides you with the necessary expertise to bring your dreams to life. 

Of course, the process of hiring and working with an interior designer is by no means instant. It takes time to find the right person for the job, and more time still to work with them and bring your design to fruition. To give yourself the best chance at project success, take note of the following pointers on how to hire and work with your interior decorator. 

Designers Vs. Decorators

An interior decorator is principally concerned with filling the space conceived by an interior designer with character and color.

An interior decorator is principally concerned with filling the space conceived by an interior designer with character and color.

First off, you may be wondering what is the difference between interior design and interior decorating. While they may sound similar, the two professions are actually quite different in some important ways. Interior designers - as their name implies -  are far more focused on the design side of things. That means drawing up the sketch for the physical layout of your interior space. 

They decide how walls are positioned, the size of windows and doors, where staircases go, and all manner of other things connected with your interior configuration. The goal of their job, therefore, is to prioritize the practicality and usability of your space which is of course a very important task. After all, there’s no point in having a strikingly beautiful interior if you can’t live in it or use it every day.   

Interior decorators are focused on filling in the space that interior designers create. That means selecting and installing furnishings, decor, curtains, painting your home’s interior, and other elements that give the space character. Interior designers and decorators often work together as well so that aesthetic considerations are accounted for in the design. 

Assess Your Interior Decorating Needs 

Fragile luxury decor materials may be less than ideal if you live with a curious pooch or a mischievous kitty.

Fragile luxury decor materials may be less than ideal if you live with a curious pooch or a mischievous kitty.

If you have browsed the Internet or perused your phone book, you probably have already found a few interior decorators offering their services. So which one should you choose? Some questions you should ask first are how the decorator will design your home, given, for example, that there are rambunctious children and pets. If it is important for your home to be decorated with environmentally safe materials, will he or she be able to accommodate this?

While the decorator’s job is more focused on form rather than function, it is still important to make practical considerations. For example, some beautiful red velvet curtains can add a rich regal air to any cozy interior. However, this might not be the best investment if you have curious tykes or mischievous pets running around. Interior decor that is easily damaged and/or expensive to repair is less than ideal for a family home. In these cases, durable yet stylish materials are the smarter choice for the long term.   

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Determine Your Favorite Interior Style 

It’s important to ask yourself what it is you like, which colors and styles most pique your fancy.

It’s important to ask yourself what it is you like, which colors and styles most pique your fancy.

It’s no surprise that interior decoration has a lot to do with your own subjective tastes. To smooth out the design process, having a good idea of what it is you like and want is a great way to get started. While it may sound like a small task, figuring out what home interior decor you prefer can actually be a bit challenging. 

It’s not something you have to think about every day, and so a big part of this process is simply exploring the various materials and styles out there to see what clicks. Once you have a solid collection of interior decorating ideas, you can aggregate them into a style that comes closest to what you want. In this way, you slowly form a coherent mental picture of the interior decor you envision for your home. 

Home Interior Decoration Vision Boards 

Speaking of which, a vision board is an excellent way to make things easier. It creates a no-stress way to physically envision your preferred style. All you need is a corkboard and some thumbtacks. Populate your vision board with magazine pages, fabrics, wallpaper samples, Pinterest pictures, or literally any material or design that piques your fancy. This collection of snippets gives you a better idea of what you’d want to include and exclude from your home’s interior decor.

Researching Interior Decorators

The internet is the best place to start your search for the best interior decorator.

The internet is the best place to start your search for the best interior decorator.

The internet is a wonderful tool with many uses, one of which is that it can help you find home interior decorators near you. Once you have a list, the next step is to take a gander at the previous jobs your prospective interior decorators have completed. This gives you an idea of what their general style is which can help you determine if they are a good fit. Your local big box hardware store can also give you some pointers as to popular interior decorators in your area. 

Interviewing Decorators 

A good working relationship with your interior designer is essential for project success.

A good working relationship with your interior designer is essential for project success.

It is important when interviewing an interior decorator to keep in mind that your interior space should be freshened up and made beautifully, but should also be functional and livable. Some functional yet fashionable choices that good home interior decorators will make for any room of your home are carts and shelving that can hold up a lamp, candles, pictures, and other items, and can be easily moved around the room; or chests that can also double as a sort of storage unit, a seating area, or even as a table should the need arise.

In other words, part of your task with interviews is to ensure you and the decorator are on the same page with regard to the balance between style and function. Working with an interior decorator means you’re going to be interacting a lot, talking over styles and design choices. It is essential that the interior decorator you choose has a good understanding of your aesthetic and daily life so they can translate these needs into their design. You don’t have to be close friends, but developing and maintaining a comfortable work relationship with your interior decorator will make the whole project much easier. 

Budgeting Your Interior Decorating 

Your interior decoration budget should account for materials used, furniture, designer fees, and any other materials-related costs.

Your interior decoration budget should account for materials used, furniture, designer fees, and any other materials-related costs.

When you have found an interior decorator you are excited to work with, begin drawing up your plans together! Be sure to have a set budget so that both the home interior decorator and you know exactly what you are working with. Make sure that this budget is firm and will not change during the course of the project - even if it is to add in some new leather sofas. Interior decorating can be expensive even without the odd delays or setbacks, so it is important to have a budget that is both realistic and flexible. 

If you want something fancy, that will likely cost you, and it is better to figure those expenses into your budget so you have a transparent tally of what everything will cost - nobody likes unpleasant surprises. Another thing to factor in is that design professionals don’t really have a set fee structure and instead operate on a customer-by-customer basis. 

As such, it is best to nail down how much everything will cost as far as designer fees are concerned early on. Remember that your interior decorator’s fees won’t include furnishings. In this way, working with an interior decorator is not too different from working with an interior designer: good communication is what will win the day.

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MG

Written by
Mateos Glen Hayes

Written by Mateos Glen Hayes

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