Updated: Jun 10
You may read this and think I am crazy for making this statement, but hang with me on this post and read to the end. I am going to share real life stories of clients who ended up wasting THOUSANDS of $$$ because they waited too long to hire a designer and they didn't have the information I am going to share with you here.
1- YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING!
Face it! You are not a designer. No matter how much Pinterest or HGTV convinces you that you are, you are not. There are things as a designer that we take into consideration when curating a space that would never cross your mind. Not because you are unintelligent or don't pay attention to details, but because you are not trained to think of every crazy detail that goes into a design. Every square inch of your home is covered when we put a design together.
STORY TIME! I had a client who moved into a new house and immediately starting picking things up here and there for her home. She knew exactly what she liked and felt very confident when making purchases. Before long she had an entire garage full of furniture and decor that she was ready to use to decorate her new home. As she starting pulling things in from the garage she realized she couldn't put the items in the places she thought she could because they didn't fit. They were either too big or too small. What did she do? She went out and bought more stuff!!!!!
After realizing she may need some help, she asked around in her friend circle if anyone knew a cheap decorator. Someone knew of a gal who knew of a gal who had a little side hustle and did some decorating. My client hired her to weed through the inventory she purchased and decorate her home with it... and so she did. She started hanging pictures and placing decor. She even had some furniture reupholstered for her. After sitting with her newly decorated home for a couple months, it didn't quite feel right, so she contacted me.
Upon walking through her home I could not believe my eyes! Nothing was decorated to scale, nothing went well together, art was hung too high or too low, the brand new fabric clashed horribly with the accents in the room and the area rug. I was beside myself! And she paid for this!
The first thing I did was edit her inventory. I made suggestions on things to get rid of and things to keep and where we would shop new. When my client went to return the items, she could not. She was outside the return window. Many of the items were antiques and she couldn't even get store credit. She ended up giving away hundreds and hundreds of dollars worth of art, furniture and decor because none of it went well together. On top of that, the fabric the decorator chose - she hated! But the decorator insisted that it was in and that it would grow on her. Well, it didn't. She paid several hundred dollars for the fabric and several hundred more to have her furniture redone and now she was stuck with it since she didn't want to pay to have it done yet again. I couldn't argue with that.
In the end, I was able to salvage the situation with some design finesse, but my poor client was out thousands at the end and a huge headache.
Take aways from this story:
1) hire a designer on the front end of your project - it will save you time and money
2) hire a designer who knows what they are doing! ask for references, ask to see their portfolio
3) invest! your home is an investment and so are the pieces inside of it. don't rush the design process, wait until you find what is just right for your space then pull the trigger
2- WE HAVE THE CONNECTIONS!
Most interior designers are highly connected to other professionals and tradesmen in the industry. When I take on a new client, it is not just me you are getting, but everyone I know comes along with me. Designers also have access to vendors that will only sell to retailers or designers and sometimes they give us a discount. Perk here is that you are getting unique items in your home design that not everyone else who shops at Target or Pottery Barn has. We can sometimes pass some of that discount on to the clients so you are not paying retail prices.
*DISCLAIMER: this does not apply to every retailer and does not apply to every deign service*
STORY TIME! I had a client who wanted to add some accents to their home in the way of wallpaper. They searched the internet high and low for the perfect one, but nothing stood out, nothing was so interesting that they had to have it. Many of the options seemed a little "been there, done that". When I got to that part of the project I was able to bring in wallpaper samples from a vendor that only sells to design professionals. The options were endless and super unique. They loved them all so much they couldn't pick one! Now of course, it is my job to help them make that choice and we found a stunning wallpaper that was perfect for their design.
STORY TIME! I'll never forget the reaction of a kitchen remodel client of mine when I told them I already had a contractor I would be bringing to the project. They were excited but also a little ticked off. When I asked about their mixed response they shared with me that they had spent weeeeeks calling around to different tradesmen trying to put their project together. They had called several painters, flooring companies, tile companies, plumbers and electricians. They had no luck finding someone for construction or cabinets and were still on the hunt.
They wanted to make sure that each professional was legit so they got references for all and spent time calling each one. This took sooooo much of their time and in the end they didn't feel comfortable with any of them, which is when they called me hoping I could help with design and project management. When they found out I had a fabulous contractor who came with great referrals that I trusted, had used before and had a great relationship with - again, they were excited but a little ticked off... mostly excited! They wasted so much time that they couldn't get back and it delayed their project for months.
STORY TIME! As designers we are a tight knit group of industry professionals. We share lots of information, sources and contacts with each other. It's such a wonderful industry to be in!
I have a client who was having a hard time visualizing their design that was taking forever to get started because of cabinet delays and inspections. During this wait time they were doubting the color scheme and material selection. I was on Instagram and saw another designer's stories where she had found this amazing woman from the Philippines who was doing the most life like renderings I had ever seen. I contacted her and had her create renderings for my client's project.
Can you believe that is a digital rendering and not an actual image!!!!! I am still blown away!
When I showed it to my clients they were shocked! They could not believe their eyes or that this was going to be their kitchen.
This was the text I got from my client moments after they saw their kitchen renderings. :)
Take aways from these stories:
1) hiring a designer may save you money on products and lots of time
2) hiring a designer will guarantee that your home is unique and doesn't look like a failed attempt at a recreation of a magazine ad
3) we know everybody! no matter who you may need on your project, we got you covered
4) we can help you visualize your newly designed space, making it easy to say yes to the process and the design
And that is how hiring a designer will be the best choice you can make when it comes to designing your home. You'll save time, money and peace of mind which has no price tag! I'll touch more on this in a future blog post about when to hire a designer on your remodel or new build.
Whether you are near or far, we have a design service for you! Contact us today with your questions or to schedule a consultation and find out what kind of magic we can bring to your home.