From the KHI Design Studio – How to Think Like a Professional Designer Part II
Yesterday I wrote about the importance of having a process in design – even after years in the business, I have come to rely not only on my natural eye for style and design but understand that incorporating a structured process into my projects allows me even more freedom in that I don’t have to worry about not “dotting an ‘i’ or crossing a ‘t'”! The process ensures that ALL steps to a fabulous design will be met.
Today, I am sharing Step Two – Assembling Your Team!
Step Two: Based on your assessment, it is now time to assemble your team.
Get that pen and paper back out!
Questions to ask yourself: Will you need an architect? Carpenter, Painter, Designer, etc. Putting the right team together is important and engaging everyone that you will be working with is best done sooner than later.
You MIGHT need to hire an interior designer if…
The project involves carpentry – Designers work with carpenters all the time and the trained eye will help achieve the right scale when building new cabinetry or making changes that involve a good deal of carpentry.
You would like a sounding board – Often, designers are merely a great sounding board who will save you from making many costly mistakes just by allowing you to bounce off the multitude of ideas that will flood you on a project.
The space is awkward – Creating functioning floor plans is a must, but dealing with awkward spaces can be tricky and sometimes just a functional floor plan just won’t create harmony in a room. A designer can typically pull a rabbit out of a hat when it comes to awkward spaces. It is usually just a skill that seems to come with the territory. These situations are typically a designer’s “dream problem”!
You have too many architectural features or too few – A good designer will work alongside an architect or independently as well to make sure a room has good architectural features. This involves placing moldings or ironwork or glass blocks or transoms, etc. in all the right places. Designers also are constantly exposed to the plethora of products on the market and can make viable suggestions about what applications of those products might be visually stimulating and attractive.
The room has lighting issues – Skilled designers always lend a professional lighting plan that offers excellent task lighting, but lovely ambience lighting as well. Knowing where, what and how is important. This aspect is more than just a pretty light fixture or a lovely lamp. Knowing where the lighting should be placed and how to achieve the right lighting for the tasks at hand are crucial. The asthetic quality can then be addressed.
You are having difficulty deciding on color – Color is one of the largest elements you will live with on a daily basis. While it’s an easy fix, designer’s have the ability to see more into a color than most people do. It’s easy for a designer to see 4 or more colors within one color chip. You will often hear them refer to color in multiple terms. Such as, I often say grey green or blue green, or lime green versus just green. It’s a brick red, a rosy red, a blue red or an orangy red, not just “red”!
You need someone to pull it all together – Accessorizing and completing the look is a must. You might want to engage a designer at this stage, although most would agree that the best results usually occur if you assemble your team early on in the process.
You want to save money! Yep, that’s right. Designers will save you money over and over again by keeping you from making mistakes. How many times have you selected the wrong paint color? Not been able to skillfully decorate a mantle, bought a piece of furniture that was too big or too small? Created a room that didn’t function well. As a designer, we walk into homes everyday and fix problems relating to a space. In fact, I often say, I can do it with my eyes closed. Truth is, on almost every job I have saved the client enough money on costly mistakes that would have occurred that my fee was more than paid for!