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Tips About Interior Design, from a Designer

by Nick, Digital Specialist | March 7, 2020

Ali is a superstar when it comes to interior design. She's one of Suburban's licensed Interior Designers. Check out our latest blog entry for tips and tricks about interior design, right from a designer!

When it comes to interior design, Ali is a superstar. She brings almost 40 years of experience as a licensed Designer at Suburban Furniture, working privately as well as a part of our Design team. She gave us some great tips and tricks about interior design to pass along to our clients. If you’re thinking about re-designing any room in your home, or if you’re moving into a new one and starting some scratch, she has some wonderful advice to keep in mind!

Have a vision. And stick to it. Start your planning by thinking about what you want the end result to be. Walk through your space and discuss what you want your room to look like when you’re finished with it. Forget about your budget for just a moment; if you could get anything you want, what would you get? Then, work backwards from there and figure out how to execute that vision. Even if you have to execute your plan in stages for budgetary or logistical reasons, always keep this picture in your mind’s eye so you don’t lose focus.

Spend your money wisely. Don’t spend money just to spend money. Ali mentioned a time when she was designing a living room for a client, and it made more sense for him to add a larger corner piece to his sectional due to the layout and the scale of the room. Even though this solution was more expensive than the smaller corner piece, there were practical, sensible reasons to spend the extra money in this case. However, another client was able to replace the lampshades on her current lamps rather than buying new, which saved them money.

But don’t settle, either. It’s better to wait and get what you really want, instead of settling for something that’s an imperfect fit. Spend your money once. Imagine going shopping and finding something that doesn’t quite fit your plan. Then, when you finally execute the rest of your plan, you’re either stuck with that less-than-perfect piece, or you have to spend even more money to get what you really wanted in the first place. If it’s something you really want, it’s worth spending the money to get what you wanted all along. Hiring an interior designer can help you stay on track and keep the end result at the top of your mind at all times.

Bring your ideas with you. Whether you’re working with a designer or doing it on your own, having an idea of what you’re looking for is always helpful. If you have pictures to support your vision of what you want, it will help you stay on track and make it easier to explain what you’re trying to find to a designer or a salesperson. According to Ali, even if a client is unsure of what exactly something is called- whether it’s a particular style, or the correct name for a certain design feature- having pictures of what you’re trying to accomplish makes the whole process easier.

Don’t forget these three things. Ali has found that her clients frequently overlook these three things when they’re planning out a new room:
- Traffic flow: A great-looking room can be ruined if it’s impossible to move around. Make sure you consider how people are going to move in, out, and through the room, and plan accordingly.
- Function: how are you really going to use the room? You might approach the design differently if you’re going to use the room as a formal living room versus a family room. If you’re moving into a new home, you might not even know this until you move in.
- Light: Not only do you need to consider where your light fixtures and lamps will go, but you need to be aware of how the natural light will affect the room as well. If it’s a room with a TV, for example, will there be a reflection from the sun at certain times of the day? If the sun comes into the room during a time when you’re not usually home, do you need to spend money on expensive shades? Again, this is something you might not know until you’ve been in the space for some time.

A huge thanks to Ali for her great advice for our clients. If you’re working on designing a new room, keep these great tips in your mind so you get the room of your dreams!