“Interior Designer” and “Interior Decorator” are often used interchangeably but there are some key differences. Though interior designers may decorate from time to time, interior design involves more than selecting beautiful furniture and adorning a space with fashionable things.
Interior Designer vs. Interior Decorator
One of the significant differences between the two is education. Interior designers are state certified after receiving a bachelors degree, obtaining work experience, and successful completion of the NCIDQ exam. Decorators, on the other hand, require no formal training or licensing.
Though both designers and decorators are concerned with the aesthetic of a space, designers look beyond the mere appearance of objects or materials implemented in a design; we carefully consider building codes, construction methods, building systems, fire and life safety, accessibility, and environmental issues when it comes to selecting fabrics, finishes, and furnishings. In addition, we work with the client to understand the psychology of a space and personalize it to fit the client’s need. We assess people’s behavioral patterns and culture, designing a space that is functional and improves the occupant’s quality of life, identifying any existing or potential design flaws and providing technical and creative solutions.
The Council for Interior Design Qualification (CIDQ) provides the following guidelines regarding the general practice of an interior designer:
The interior design process follows a systematic and coordinated methodology -- including research, analysis and integration of knowledge into the creative process — to satisfy the client’s needs and resources.
Designs respond to and coordinate with the building shell and acknowledge the physical location and social context of the project. Designs must adhere to code and regulatory requirements and encourage the principles of environmental sustainability. Source: CIDQ
Benefits of a Professional Interior Designer
By understanding building codes, systems, and construction methods, the addition of a professional interior designer on your project can lead to cost savings and a decreased likelihood of critical mistakes. We uphold a professional code of ethics and standards of practice and continually educate ourselves on industry standards. We often work alongside other industry professionals, such as architects, engineers, and contractors coordinating our design work with other trades to ensure that we deliver a quality project finished in a timely and safeguarded manner.