Choosing the right interior designer is no simple task. Many factors come into play that will shape the experience and overall outcome of the design. Additionally, depending on the scope of your project, you could be working with your designer for months, possibly years. That's why we believe it's important you find someone right for you. In order to do that, you need to know how interior designers differentiate themselves in terms of service and style. To help you feel confident about your choice, here are some things to consider when hiring your interior designer.

STYLE

First and foremost, you want an interior designer who can give you a design that matches your aesthetic (or your business’s brand, for you commercial clients). Even if you don’t know your style, per se, you can easily determine if a designer’s style matches yours by looking at their portfolio. If their work speaks to you, add them to your list! You want someone who’s skilled in designing your aesthetic so they can personalize their design to you. 

 

modern versus transitional

Beyond Interior Design specializes in modern design with an international influence. We also help clients transition their home, breathing modern life into their current aesthetic.

LEVEL OF SERVICE

Another factor to consider is the level of service you’d like your interior designer to perform. For example, we at Beyond Interior Design are a full-service design firm. Therefore, simply put, when we take over a project, we handle everything — from design to build-out and everything in between. If you don’t have the know-how and time to put together a cohesive space, full-service design is a great option for you. 

On the other hand, you may want a designer to consult on your space, giving you ideas that you can later execute. Or you could, like many people, lie in the in-between and want a designer to create the design while you make the purchases and take over the build-out. No matter the level of service you’re looking for, there are designers out there for you. You just need to know what level of service fits your needs. 

SPECIAL INTERESTS

To further hone in on a designer that’s right for your project, consider what special interests or design goals you have and compare them to those of the designers you're considering. Are you someone who wants a connected house, aesthetically and wirelessly? If so, perhaps you want a designer experienced in incorporating smart-home technology into their designs. Do you live a natural and holistic life? Maybe you'd benefit from a designer who has biophilic and sustainable design principles at their core. The more aligned you are with your designer, the easier it is for them to create a space personalized to you. Even if they don't advertise their specialty, ask them more about what inspires them. The discovery process is a two-way street so take advantage of it!

natural organic interior design

COST OF DESIGN

When considering the cost of design, you must take into account the designer's fees as well as the implementation of the design. Still, understanding the cost of design can be tricky because numerous factors come into play. A designer's vendors (i.e. sources for furnishings, finishes, etc.) will heavily impact the overall cost, as will the level of service. With some services, such as e-design or consultation packages, the design cost is stated upfront, and you have more control over the vendors you purchase from. Therefore, the total cost of design is easier to grasp. For full-service design firms, it’s more complex, as a designer simply can’t provide an accurate project quote until after the products are sourced and the design is complete. 

Don’t worry, there are still ways for you to understand if your budget matches the cost of a designer. For one, you can tell them the scope and desired budget of your project and ask if that's accomplishable by their firm. You could also determine if the designer has a project minimum and what that minimum is. We’ll use ourselves in another example. Because we typically design custom kitchens, we average at least $60-$100K for kitchen remodels. Additionally, we have a $50K project minimum. If those numbers are not in your budget this time around, that’s totally ok! But it’s helpful to understand that early on so you can make the right decision when selecting a designer.

LEARN HOW TO CALCULATE AN ACCURATE BUDGET
FOR YOUR REMODEL OR REFURNISHING PROJECT!


THINGS TO ASK YOUR DESIGNER

Who oversees the build-out of my design? 

Some interior design firms hire general contractors to oversee the build-out of a design while other designers have the credentials (i.e. contractor’s license) to manage the project themselves. Many benefits come from hiring a designer who will also project manage the buildout, including streamlined communication, accurate implementation, and shared industry discounts. 

 

What’s your fee structure — hourly or flat-fee?

Most designers offer two types of fee structures, hourly or flat-fee, both of which are pretty straightforward. A designer either bills the clients for hours worked or creates a flat-fee based on estimated hours worked. Some clients really love the flat-fee because they know the number upfront. It’s important to understand that flat-fees are typically derived from estimated total hours plus hours for unforeseen issues or design edits. In other words, clients might pay for more hours than actually worked. Other people enjoying an hourly fee structure because they only pay for hours worked. They just don’t know the total cost of design fees until after services are complete. 

 

How transparent is your design firm? 

Transparency is key, especially for hourly-fee firms, because you should know where your money is going. One thing we do at Beyond Interior Design is offer monthly invoices with detailed descriptions of all hours logged. 


Now that you know what factors to consider when selecting your interior designer, you can confidently hire someone who will excel at your project. If that interior designer happens to be us, wonderful! We can't wait to speak with you more and start our journey together. 

 

beyond interior design style and cost

In early 2018, a Dallas resident, feeling aligned with our international modern style, hired us to redesign her 2-bedroom Uptown condo. The client needed more than new furnishings — she wanted a full remodel. As a registered contractor with the city, Juliana reminded the Dallas modernista that we could project manage the construction work and see the design to completion. In the end, our client wished to use her friend who was a general contractor.

When a client offers to use their own contractor, we respect that decision. Hey — maybe if we like their work we'll consider putting them on our go-to list. Even if the torch is passed, we still like to collaborate with the GC to ensure the design gets implemented properly. In this particular project, we became concerned after not hearing from the GC, and, after scheduling an on-site visit with the client to check in on the work, we were disheartened by what we saw.

Among the many minute, but noticeable, design details the crew ignored, they also sourced the wrong materials for the bathroom and hadn't waterproofed the tub. (They also installed plumbing lines incorrectly, eventually causing the entire condo to flood.) We had to notify the client, and she was grateful we did. Eventually, she hired a different contractor to oversee the work, which only led to more unfortunate events. The new crew demolished items not on the demo list, including her newly remodeled fireplace and installed a water heater too small to heat the tub.

Our rightfully exhausted client has expressed her regret in hiring a third party to oversee her project. Honestly, we just empathize with her. No one should have to experience this worst-case-scenario. Our main focus now is figuring out how we can come in to get the project on track and give her the design she's been dreaming of for over a year.

Our client's story has compelled us to share with you the benefits of hiring an interior designer who can legally oversee the project from design to end-of-construction. It's imperative we clearly outline those perks so you can make an informed decision about what qualifications you'll look for when hiring someone to give you the home of your dreams.

THE DESIGN GETS IMPLEMENTED

Passing along a set of construction documents and specifications to a contractor acts like a real-life, high-stakes game of operator. To the initial communicator, the message is crystal clear, but one tiny misinterpretation can completely change the meaning. Maybe they decide to go with a slab of granite for your kitchen countertops instead of marble, or perhaps they choose a smaller, flat teal tile when we had meticulously researched and sourced a large, textured one. Small changes, big implications. Simply said, when the person who designed your interior is in charge of managing the project, you can rest assured there will be no misinterpretations of the design concept we both agreed was best for the space.

teal tile modern design

CHANGES DON'T COMPROMISE DESIGN

As the general contractor of a project, our goal is to follow every specification to the tee. With that said, all projects incur some unforeseen changes. For example, if we design custom kitchen cabinets that extend to the ceiling, but the area's building codes prohibit ceiling-high cabinetry, as the general contractor, we can implement a change with the overall design in mind. A contractor without our unique skill set and inherent knowledge of the concept will make decisions that could compromise the entire space.

BEST MAN FOR THE TRADE

As designers, our primary goal is to give our clients the space of their dreams — the space we designed for them and of which they energetically approved. To ensure this occurs, we select the best tradesman for each job. This might mean we're organizing the work of nearly 10 different subcontractors, but we're more than pleased to do that if we know the quality of their craft is supreme.

THE BUCK STOPS HERE

When we oversee a project, the buck stops with us. If something does happen to go wrong in the construction phase, our clients simply reach out to us and we're immediately on it. It surprises many interior designers that we take on this responsibility (and liability), but having grown up around construction and contractors, Juliana is just as passionate about overseeing a design to completion as she is about creating it.

remodel interior design

SHARED DISCOUNTS WITH CLIENTS

It's common practice for general contractors to markup the cost of materials for a given job. For example, if the laundry room tile costs $5000, the contractor may apply a 20% markup, leaving the client with a $6000 bill. Because we're design professionals, suppliers often award us an industry discount, which we share with our clients. In other words, if our industry price is 20% less than retail, we split the $1000 discount with our client, saving them $500. Unlike the formally mentioned perks of hiring an interior designer who is also a GC, this practice may only be observed by Beyond Interior Design, but we thought it was worth mentioning (who doesn't enjoy exclusive discounts?!).


We still wholeheartedly believe and respect that, at the end of the day, you choose who manages your redesign. We simply want to guarantee our client's satisfaction. As cliche as that sounds, it's true. 

 

 

To get a sense of an interior designer's specialized style, one can peruse through the professional's portfolio of work. To truly understand the designer, though, you need to know what and who inspires them. By knowing these facts, you can see the whole picture of what your designer could bring to the table.

For our head designer, Juliana, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe has been one of those great inspirations. Juliana has embodied his "less is more" approach, which has shaped the way she designs spaces.

While an architect by trade, Mies van der Rohe paid great attention to every element of his designs, including the interior. He even created minimalist, and eventually iconic, items of furniture to fully articulate his principles.

One of his most known creations was the German Pavilion, which was showcased at the Barcelona International Exhibition in 1929. Mies van der Rohe and Lilly Reich's (his co-designer) work emblemized the Modern Movement of the early 1900s. While disassembled after the exhibition ended, the pavilion was so well received that the head of Barcelona's Urban Planning Department designated a team of architects to research and create an exact replica of the original design. In 1986, the new pavilion opened to the public, named as the Barcelona Pavilion.


Barcelona Pavilion Mies Rohe


In the original pavilion, Mies van der Rohe and Reich showcased a newly designed chair made of leather and steel, which later earned the name the "Barcelona Chair." Since the German Pavilion was set to host the King of Spain and German authorities during the opening ceremonies of the exhibition, the spaces were outlined by floor-to-ceiling panels of glass and various kinds of marble. The latter material, in particular, was posher than typical Mies van der Rohe style, but it needed to accommodate royalty. As did the furniture the reception guests would interact with. Cue in the Barcelona Chair.


Barcelona chair Mies van der Rohe


The simple but sumptuous article rose to the level of the meticulously designed pavilion. The final product pleased Mies and Reich so much that they created a Barcelona sofa, which appeared in a client's home for the first time that same year.


Design within reach Barcelona chair sofa

Barcelona chair, stool, and couch — designed by  Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Lilly Reich


Mies van der Rohe designed numerous furniture pieces throughout his career, each with their own essence of luxury, creativity, and simplicity. These elegant and pragmatic principles are what Juliana and the Beyond team bring to their designs every day.



The influence Mies had on Juliana is indescribable by words, but each of her concepts highlights a principle the German architect held so dearly nearly a century ago.


Barcelona pavilion interior design

 

Sitting around your friend's living room, sipping on your favorite evening cocktail surrounded by those who bring you great conversation and laughs, you're distracted. An eye-grabbing book lies on the surface of the space's centerpiece, the coffee table, and you can't help but imagine what wonders you'd see underneath the hard, matte-finished cover. You don't want to interrupt your friend who's discussing their favorite new podcast, but the book is tempting you to grab and explore every inch of it.

Taschen coffee table book on Bentley automobiles

Taschen's Extraordinary, The Spirit of Bentley

That's the power of a successful coffee table book. On a superficial level, it can hold more beauty than any one piece of decor, for each page is a new opportunity to see something spectacular. Additionally, coffee table books can be selected for their exterior color or design to complement the other decor you have on your table. On a personal level, they create an experience for the owner and guest of a space. They can be picked up, pored over, and provoking. Coffee table books can be inspirational and representational. Maybe you're a car enthusiast, so Be Extraordinary, The Spirit of Bentley by Assouline sits on your living room's coffee table. Your friends learn you might have an interest in the luxury, English automobile and your passion stares back at you every time you kick back and enjoy your space with loved ones or alone.

Selecting the right topic for your coffee table book might not be difficult, but choosing one that rises to the level of your interior design might take a little extra leg work. To make things easier, we'll tell you our favorite coffee table book publishers, great books for different interests, and some of our most-loved pieces.

ASSOULINE AND TASCHEN

We gravitate towards the coffee table book publishers Assouline and Taschen for two distinct, and different, reasons. If one of your interests falls under Assouline's categories, you will most definitely want to purchase their book on the topic. They think about design from every angle, and the pieces they produce never disappoint. Taschen, on the other hand, offers a variety of books. Their products can come in a wide range of designs and sizes, so you might not always get that large, hardcover, piece of art with Taschen. But don't be mistaken, they do publish that iconic coffee book style and they're sure to carry a book that covers a topic you're interested in.

BOOKS BASED ON INTEREST

DESIGN

Since design is our specialty, here are some rich books on design, ranging from fashion to architecture.

Assouline coffee table book on fashion, homes, and design


Taschen coffee table book on architecture


Assouline coffee table book on design

 

FOOD AND DRINK

Whether you're a creator or enjoyer, beautifully composed photos of food & drink never let you down. If anything, they inspire you to recreate the recipe for your next dinner party (or find a friend who will).

Assouline coffee table book art and cooking


Assouline coffee table book on cocktails


Taschen coffee table book food and drink

TRAVEL

Some of the best books are the ones that take you away, show you a different side of a culture or landscape that you've never seen but now dream to.

Assouline coffee table book on travel


Taschen coffee table book on travel


Assouline coffee table book on travel

OUR FAVORITES

There are some coffee table books we often style our homes with, whether it's because they play with the color scheme, we know the client will love the topic, or both. Tom Ford by Tom Ford and Bridgett Foley is a go-to book for us. It's an extremely versatile decor piece and the photography is unmatched.  The Chanel collection from Assouline is similar, as it's black and white, allowing it to fit any sleek, modern space.

coffee table books on design

Bvlgari Roma and Whiskey Cocktails are new finds for us that we love! Bvlgari Roma is a great color-pop piece while Whiskey Cocktails perfectly accents any bar setting.

Assouline coffee table books

 

You've seen a wide variety of books based on interest, style, and design — it's time you select a coffee table book that'll inspire and represent you. If you find multiple you want (and it's very likely you will), we're close to the holidays — put them on your gift list! Coffee table books make fabulous gifts for the holidays or for that house-warming party you've been invited to. They're thoughtful, beautiful, and sure to get well-used for years.

One of the first questions we ask new clients is "how would you define your style?" Since we're a modern design firm, we understand their general taste, but we need to know more to create a personalized space. Their response, however, can be a bit disorganized. And, honestly, what do we expect? They've come to us because they need help articulating their style and replicating it in their space. We don't expect them to familiarize themselves with all the subcategories within modern design.

When we take on a project, we help define the client's style. Of course, this is helpful for us to create a cohesive design, but it's also beneficial for them so they can make informed home decor/furnishing decisions in the future that match their style.

In other words, while not necessary, it's beneficial to know your style, which is why we've picked four unique modern designs that have personality in their own ways. At the end of the blog, if you see one of these examples and say, "OMG — that's totally my style!" then you can download the corresponding mood card to pin on your inspiration wall at home.

 


 

modern glam interior design

MODERN GLAM

Traditionally, "glam" decor features tantalizing textures, rich fabrics, and metallic accents to create an extravagant and opulent space. While sensually dramatic, it typically keeps to muted tones as to not fully overwhelm a space. Modern glam interior design incorporates the tempting textures, accents, and muted colors of glam, but it keeps to sleeker lines. It usually consists of less tufted furniture and ornateness throughout the home.

 

modern glam interior design

 

 

minimalist luxe interior design

MINIMALIST LUXE

Less is more.

Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, architect (1886-1969) 

For minimalist luxe, less truly is more. It strips away the unnecessary, creating a simpler way to live while simultaneously showcasing functional design. Minimalist luxe interiors will have a concise color palette, pared-down silhouettes, and clean, crisp lines.

 

minimalist luxe interior design

 

 

curated bohemian interior design

CURATED

Curated interiors are all about the individual, so there are no visually standard elements in this style. The basic concept involves taking the emotional and treasured pieces of someone's existing collection and combining it with new elements to create a space that exudes the individual's personality.

 

curated bohemian interior design

 

 

modern color pop interior design

MODERN COLOR  POP

Interiors that keep the sleek, clean lines of modern design but defy the rule of muted color palettes are prime examples of modern color pop. Colors aren't just schemes in these designs, they're the essence. Color pop spaces are loud, but (when done well) they also maintain the sophistication and timelessness of modern design.

 

modern color pop interior design

GET INSPIRED
Click on the mood cards below to download and print!

 

 

 

Furniture and decor stores like West Elm, Crate and Barrel, and IKEA dominate their market for a reason — they create attractive showrooms and catalogs that allow consumers to easily purchase their curated designs. All one simply needs to do is find a room they like through one of the store's "inspiration" sources, and they can purchase everything pictured, from the sofa and coffee table to the wall art and floor planter. These stores make it extremely convenient for people wanting a DIY interior makeover.

When it comes to designs for the individual, however, these brand-name stores fall short. They appeal to the masses, that's simply their nature. And that's ok because every piece in one's home doesn't have to be custom-made. In fact, incorporating a few unique, eye-catching pieces is all it takes to personalize a space.

Where do you find such items? Local shops.

KASART local art decor shop

Kasart, located in Dallas at 6025 Royal Lane St. 221.

Located in Dallas's Preston Hollow neighborhood, the curated modern art and decor store, Kasart, offers a variety of pieces sure to transform one's room. When customers shop here, they know they're receiving something special, as owner and interior designer Mariana Tagle only sources "items that are different and not easily accessible or too commercial."

The Peruvian designer moved to Dallas seven years ago, quickly making the modern aesthetic her market niche. Her professional background and travels around the world helped shape her cosmopolitan taste, and she wanted to share this with the Texas city. "In the past, Dallas had been built and decorated in a more traditional style," Mariana said. But she found clients to be extremely excited about "bringing contemporary life into their homes," and the success of her client consultations drove her to want more. So after six years of balancing a design business, her three children’s busy schedules, and waiting for the perfect location, Mariana opened her dream store, Kasart, in May 2019.

The inspiration behind Kasart was Mariana's desire to offer clients an opportunity to add a modern twist to any space. "I believe your home should be a place that brings you joy and nothing brings more joy than being surrounded by beauty. This doesn’t mean everything has to be modern but adding a few pieces can really elevate one's decor."


unique interior design decor and art


She carefully curates her collection, selecting pieces that are unique and full of personality. The art she brings in comes from "artists who are growing their presence so it’s a quality investment for the clients."


unique art for your interior design



It's hard to find personality and uniqueness in your staple home and decor stores, which is why it's so important to branch out and visit your local shops like Kasart. We hope this Shop Talk has inspired you to do just that!

 

...

In our previous post, we discussed how to set a reasonable budget for your interior decor and furnishing project. For those of you seeking help on setting your remodel budget, you probably felt a little left out. Well, guess what — in Part II of How to Set Your Interior Design Budget, you’re our main focus! 

Budgeting for a remodel is more complex than a refurnishing project simply because the cost of labor and materials aren't straightforward and readily available online. So we won't be helping you reach a reasonable number this week. Instead, we'll point out all the details that go into remodeling your space so you can see how each step of the process will affect your budget. Kitchens and bathrooms are typically the most costly and complicated, so those will be our main focus in this post, but we'll also cover general elements that apply to all jobs.project management fee for remodel

One of those common elements is the domino effect. For all projects, big or small, changing one thing often leads to changing something else. This could be out of necessity or for design continuity. The domino effect is often the most overlooked and costly part of a redesign. Therefore, it's always good to think about how one change will affect another element in that space or the spaces around it so you can budget appropriately. 

People often get caught up in the cost of materials (cabinets, countertops, flooring), but the cost of labor greatly impacts a project's budget. When making any considerable changes to a property, numerous tradesmen will be brought in at different stages of the project (i.e. plumber, tile setter, carpenter, electrician, demolition team, etc.). To overlook the subcontractors and organize the project timeline, a general contractor is needed. Each trade will have labor costs on top of the materials, and a general contractor will apply an additional 10-30% upcharge for project management. 



The factors that alter overall cost get even more detailed and specific depending on the project, so to help you see how those aspects (as well as the domino effect and labor) come into play, we'll break down every major element of a kitchen and bathroom remodel and expose the areas that'll greatly affect your budget.

KITCHEN

CABINETS AND COUNTERTOPS

cost of custom cabinets for interior designThe first question to ask yourself when it comes to cabinets is do you want custom or standard? Custom cabinets are exactly as they sound, they’re built custom to fit your space. Standard cabinets can vary in terms of height and setup (i.e. drawers, shelves, lazy susan), but the sizes are set. In wall-to-wall configurations, standard installations often require filler pieces to close the gaps created by the cabinets not being built specifically for that space. Hence why custom cabinets are preferred for a seamless design. If custom is your preferred route, budget anywhere from $15K to $100K, depending on craftsmanship and size of kitchen.

Cabinet finish also affects cost. Laminate and veneer come with a higher price tag, so people commonly choose paint. However, if selecting this option, you should also take into account the cost of hiring a painter, as cabinet installers usually don’t cover that service. 

When it comes to countertops, people often assume marble is the top-shelf of stone materials. In reality, the type of stone matters less (in terms of cost) than appearance. For example, an exotic granite slab will have a higher price tag than a simple marble one.

CONTINUOUS AESTHETIC

If the kitchen you’re remodeling is open or you’d like to open it up to another room, you must take into account the surrounding space. Once the two (or more) areas are combined, so are all encompassing elements. For example, we were hired to redesign someone’s open-concept kitchen in their Dallas condo. However, updating just the kitchen and not addressing the outdated style of the dining and living rooms would’ve created a discontinuity in the great space. We ended up redesigning the entire area to promote a continuous aesthetic throughout the space. Therefore, if you’re planning on having an open layout by the end of your remodel, we’d recommend also budgeting for updates to the adjoining space(s). 

before and after modern interior design

Our clients at Turtle Creek wanted to only remodel their kitchen. However, to keep style continuity throughout their open space, we also updated their living and dining areas.

ELECTRICAL AND PLUMBING

If moving major appliances, like an electric range or refrigerator, an electrician will need to be brought on board. Electric ranges require a special 240V outlet, which will need to be professionally installed in the appliance's new location. Fridges, on the other hand, operate on standard 110/120V outlets, but a professional needs to ensure an outlet is in the right position and the power comes from its own circuit. A plumber will also need to be involved in moving the water line to accommodate the refrigerator’s water hook-up. 

If you’re considering moving your sink or installing one in an island, this will also require the labor of a plumber. And when plumbing is affected, your walls (or flooring for the island) are too because your plumber will need to reconfigure the plumbing lines. So if you weren’t originally budgeting for drywall work or new floors, you might end up needing to. Can you see the domino effect at work here?

 

BATHROOM

CABINETS AND COUNTERTOPS

easy off-the-shelf cabinets

Click the picture to shop this look!

As mentioned earlier, the cost of stone countertops varies more on exoticness of the stone versus the material. The big thing you need to consider when replacing your bathroom countertop is whether or not they want to replace the cabinets as well. You may not mind your current cabinetry, but the question is do you like it enough to keep for years to come. It’s important to consider this because once the stone countertop is placed, the cabinets can’t easily be changed. 

If you do decide to change your cabinets, good news! Unless you’re stretching your cabinets from wall-to-wall or have a very particular design in mind, you can use standard cabinets from places like Wayfair, Ikea, or Lowe's. 

FINISHES

Changing your finishes, such as tub or shower hardware, isn’t as simple as it seems. The tub or shower system must match up with the valve placed by the plumbers, or you will have to install a new valve. In which case, a plumber’s services will be needed. Just as discussed in the kitchen section, if plumbing is affected, tile on the floor or walls most likely will be, too. The seemingly simple switch from silver finishes to brass is no longer so simple.



SHOWERS AND TUBS

The first question you need to ask yourself when trying to budget for your shower/tub remodel is do you even want both? More and more people are opting out of having baths to make room for more luxurious showers. If you have the room and want both, the next question is do you want it built-in or have it stand alone? Often, people think stand-alones are more expensive because they see the big price tag on the tub itself. However, if you want a built-in, you must also consider the framing of the tub and materials around it, in addition to the construction and installation labor. 

modern bathroom new build

Can you guess all the trades used in this master bath?

Showers are arguably more complex because everything is customized — the wall and floor materials, placement of shower system, glass or no glass, built-in shelf or seat. Every custom element requires a different trade. Of course, a plumber will need to be involved to install the shower system. A tile-setter will be responsible for wall and floor finishes. But before tile can be set, a concrete pourer must pour the concrete shower pan and waterproof it. A lot of trades for such a small space — we know!

WALL FINISH

Unlike other rooms throughout the house, there’s a larger variety of wall finishes used in bathrooms. Besides just paint and wallpaper, tiles, laminate, acrylic, and stone are all used in the high-moisture rooms. Here, the mode you select will affect your overall budget, depending on material and cost of labor to install (i.e. a tile-setter will accrue more hours than someone applying wallpaper). 



If this sounds like a lot, that's because it is! Remodel projects are complex and involved, which is why it's so hard to accurately budget for them. Hopefully, though, after reading Part II of How to Set your Interior Design Budget, you feel enlightened and can confidentially approach your remodel budget with an informed perspective.

 

Whether you're building a home, remodeling your new commercial space, or updating that early 2000's kitchen, it's hard to know where to start when setting your interior design project's budget. You may know how much you'd like to spend, but don't know if that number is even feasible.interior design bedroom

 

To be honest, it's probably not.

 

Now, don't think we say that to scare you — we say that to prepare you. As interior designers, it's our job to set cost expectations, and the earlier we can do that, the better. Imagine if you went to get your tires changed for the first time, expecting each tire to cost $20, and when you get there the serviceman informs you it'll be $100 instead. You're frustrated because you didn't prepare for this. It was your first time purchasing new tires, afterall. And the serviceman was just charging industry standard. But because the expectation didn't meet reality, you end up having a negative experience. That's why it's better to prepare you earlier rather than later.

 

So, how can you, the client, prepare a realistic budget before even approaching a designer? That's what we'll help you with in this two-part post. In Part I, we'll cover interior design budgeting for decor and furnishings.

 

1. PICK THE ROOM

This may seem obvious, but the first step is picking the room you want to redesign. You may only have one room, but if you have an entire house you should look at each room individually instead of grouping everything together. This will make the following steps much easier.

 

modern interior design bedroom

2. LIST OUT ITEMS

Look at your room and create a spreadsheet of all the possible items that would go in there. The most critical will be the items you probably don't think of — paint or wallpaper, hardware (i.e. curtain hardware, towel racks, etc.), art, accessories, rugs, pillows/pillowcases, plants and planters. If you have an inspiration photo from Pinterest or elsewhere, list all the items in that photo even if you think it's too much. It's better to overshoot then underestimate.

 

modern interior design sitting area

 

3. RANDOMLY SELECT ITEMS AT STORES YOU LIKE

Once you have your room's purchase list, head on over to your favorite home store's website (or in person if that's your thing). Take your list and randomly select items from that store that check each box. For example, if you've listed "king bed", price out a random king bed. The idea is to get a general budget, not a specific one. Specifics won't be needed at this point since you'll be entrusting your interior designer to make the best selections later on. Another benefit to the exercise is that it allows you to see how each item adds to the total cost.

 

modern interior design brands

Examples of home stores.

4. DESIGNER FEES AND INSTALLATION

Remember, you're not only buying new furnishings, but you've also hired a designer to create your interior's concept. There will also be an "installation day" — the day designers and crew come in to install your new furnishings. The cost of these services will vary based on the designer's cost structure, but make sure you consider each before finalizing your budget.

 

5. FINALIZE YOUR BUDGET

After working through your spreadsheet and considering service fees, estimate what your interior design project will cost. This will give you a reasonable budget. From here, you can finalize the budget you'll take to your interior designer.

 

We understand the reasonable budget will most likely be higher than your desired budget, and that's ok. If the difference is slight, you can discuss this with your designer. Maybe it's too far out of range for you, in which case an e-design route could be optimal (this option has minimal service fees, as the purchasing and installation are left to the client).

 

Whatever you choose to do once you've calculated your budget, at least you'll have made an informed decision!

 


STICK AROUND FOR NEXT WEEK!

Catch next week's Part II, budgeting for a remodel/new build.


 

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