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How To Prepare For Your Interior Design Consultation

by : Caitlin Stevenson | Interior Designer, Tailored HQ

The first consultation with your Interior Designer is the most important stage in the Design Process, as it establishes the foundations for the project and how both parties will work together. If you were to think of your project as similar to a good book – you want to make sure the first chapter tells us all of the important details about Who, What, When, Where and How.

If we are able to get a clear understanding of these elements, the process is so much smoother for both parties. So, here are a few things to ponder and jot down in a notebook (over a glass or two of red wine) to ensure you get the most out of your consultation.

The Who’s

The most important part of any design is to ensure that it WORKS for the people who use it day-to-day. In your consultation, we will ask plenty of questions to get an understanding of who is there, who visits frequently and generally, who we are accommodating in the design. We will also establish who is the main contact for the design (if there are multiple people involved)

Things to note down:

  • Each Family Member/Housemates Name and Age Group
  • Frequent Guests? For Example; inlaws or out of state friends (if the guest room is part of the scope)
  • Any Pets? Are they usually indoors or outdoors?
  • Any Special Requirements?
  • Who will be your primary decision maker? – responsible for communicating ideas, changes and decisions to the other party if they are not able be at meetings etc
  • The What’s & Where’s

    It might sound obvious but writing as many answers that you can to the question “WHAT DO YOU WANT US TO HELP WITH?” is extremely helpful to the process. It is very easy to use up all of your consultation time jumping from room to room, so to maximise what you and your designer will get out of the conversation a short, summary of each space and WHAT you want to happen is Key.

    Things to Note down:

  • Start with each room that you want us to work on.
  • For each room: Note the primary function of that room, no matter how obvious it might seem (For Example bed 2 & 3 might be Sleeping but Bed 4 might be ironing and occasional guest room – Or it might be your Yoga room – we won’t know unless you tell us. This part helps us to determine priorities in your design and direct the budget.
  • Jot down anything in there that doesn’t work the way you would like
  • Note down anything that you love and want to stay the same
  • The When’s and How’s

    Now that we’ve spent some time establishing the scope, the remaining items will be a discussion of

    When: Including expected timeframes, Turnarounds for design elements.

    How: We will discuss the budget and any other parameters that may impact the design and a brief chat of HOW we intend to bring the design to life. You will also receive a SCOPE OF WORKS document after the meeting more detailed notes on the whole project so don’t worry if you forget something or if we’ve run out of time.

    Things to Note Down:

  • Your Ballpark figure for what you are committed to spend toward your design. You don’t need to have a money tree in the backyard but you do need to help us set realistic goals for the design. We will review it in the consultation but it helps to have a talk about it with all family members first =)
  • Your Estimated timeframe.
  • These five items will drive the direction of your design so they are worth discussing with all involved parties, prior to your consultation to ensure everyone knows what the expectations are that we can give you the absolute maximum value possible for your money.

    Ready to jump in?