Interior design is simply the art and science of improving the interior of an establishment to achieve a more aesthetically pleasing and healthier environment for those using the space. An interior designer typically is a person who plans, studies, coordinates, and oversees all of these improvement projects. The term interior designer does not refer to just the designers but also applies to those involved in managing and maintaining the space. This person has an in-depth knowledge of materials, processes, and construction. These are essential skills to understand how to create a space that will be functional, visually appealing, easy to maintain, and most of all safe. It takes knowledge of engineering, research, and business as well as creative thinking to create a space that meets or exceeds all of these criteria.
The first step to becoming an interior designer is gaining a basic understanding of the field. There are numerous schools and colleges that offer a variety of introductory courses on space planning, aesthetics, architecture, construction, and safety. These courses will help students gain a solid foundation in the fundamental tools of the trade. Upon obtaining their degree, students should have extensive experience within the field to help them in their career development.
Interior designers are often required to develop structural changes to the location of a space. In doing so, the designer must have an understanding of mathematics, aesthetics, and safety. These three factors must be considered when designing a structure to avoid potential safety hazards. Some structural changes, such as altering the layout of a room or opening a doorway is relatively simple. However, more drastic structural changes may require the expertise of structural engineers. Other times, simple structural changes can yield positive aesthetic results.
The second step to becoming an interior designer is to plan and implement a functional furniture program. Functional furniture encompasses every part of the home from door fronts, window treatments, carpeting, countertops, flooring, cabinets, furniture, lighting, heating, and windows. Although functionality is important, it is also important for interior designers to consider the mood of the homeowner as well as the desired design effect. This planning process will allow interior designers to select the correct furniture according to each individual.
In order to fully understand how interior designers create spaces, it is important to understand the concept of space planning. Space planning is comprised of several factors including room size, wall dimension, number of people expected in the room, layout, ventilation, as well as the desired style and scale of the room. An interior designer will create a floor plan through a series of meetings with homeowners to fully understand the desired design. Once fully planned, the interior designer will begin coordinating with contractors, suppliers, and sub-contractors to ensure that everything is constructed to specifications.
Once the floor plans and project management have been established, the interior designer will begin coordinating with the clients to pre-plan furnishings and color schemes. The client generally provides the artwork and style choices for the room while the interior designer constructs it according to the clients’ selection. Most interior designers will use computer-aided drafting (CAD) software to help with the design process. Computer aided design allows for both precise detailing and complete design control. Using computer aided tools, interior designers can create their floor plans and furniture selections in just a few minutes.