SBID History

The Society of British & International Interior Design (SBID) was founded in 2009 by Dr Vanessa Brady, OBE. Having spent over 30 years in the Interior Design industry, Vanessa found that interior design as a profession was not regulated, nor was there a clear separation between an interior design hobbyiest and a professional.

SBID Accredits professional interior designers, architects and manufacturers to the highest standard. The organisation aims to promote best practice and expert knowledge in the interior design industry, create routes to market for design professionals and strengthen the links between emerging industry talent and the creative industries. SBID is active in 46 countries and is represented across the world through its partnerships and International membership

SBID membership include interior designers, architects, developers, specifiers and construction professionals. They operate across both the commercial and residential sectors and represent the range, diversity and international spread of the global design industry.

Dr Vanessa Brady

Since its incorporation SBID has lobbied at the House of Commons for change to regulation of interior design as a profession. As the representative member for the interior design industry within the All-party lobby group for business, SBID provides the British economy with evidence of the annual financial growth for commercial design as an industry.

Pioneering British Interior Design Standards

SBID is the only British interior design accrediting body to be inducted into The European Council of Interior Architects (ECIA)– A representative body for European professional organisations in Interior Design and Architecture.

Founded in 1992, ECIA currently represents 14 national organisations, with over 6000 professional Interior Architects/Designers. ECIA is the highest level of measured knowledge and best practice for interior design throughout Europe, by each recognised country. As the standard-bearer for professional British interior design, SBID developed new European relationships through the ECIA for UK interior design where previously, due to a lack of existing standards, Britain had been excluded. SBID placed Britain on a level playing field within Europe for interior design and globally amongst counterpart organisations; creating a British standard of education, competence and practice for the first time

The first in UK education-based route to accrediting an Interior Designer was originally adopted from the European Charter of Education (ECIA). Based on the European framework, The Society of British Interior Design (SBID) pioneered accreditation for British Interior Designers in 2009. The SBID Accreditation framework is now internationally recognised across the interior design industry and has influenced other accreditation organisations to follow the education-based accreditation framework for accrediting British Designers.

To ensure continued learning and improvement of accredited designers, SBID requires the criteria for an SBID Accredited Interior Designer:

  • 3 years of measured education with a degree in interior design or overlapping sectors
  • 5 years of work experience in the field of design
  • 24 SBID-recognised CPD points per annum
  • Proof of professional indemnity insurance

Measuring Interior Design Education Standards
& Accrediting Course Content

A Memorandum of Understanding between SBID and Interior Educators at a variety of universities, groups and forums, formed an agreement to improve the outcome of course content for a career in the interior design industry. In review SBID dissolved the initiative and revived it in 2011 directly with individual universities empowered to provide an interior design degree.

In 2015 SBID was awarded independent status by the UK government to measure interior design education and accredit university course content for interior design degrees. The accreditation for Key Information Statistics relates to measured educational and business processes forming part of each university’s central government funding status.

SBID acts as an independently accredited inspector of course content ensuring each course meets all-inclusive standards. SBID assesses how fit-for-purpose tuition transfers to the commercial world and interprets the data into a ‘standard’ the success is outcome that translates income generated directly back into the treasury.

Business Overall Winner

Student Competitions

In 2018, SBID partnered with BE OPEN Think Tank to launch Designed for Business, a national design competition for final year creative students and graduates studying interior design, decoration, fashion and art & design with a prize of £30,000. The competition aims to showcase emerging creative talent and nurture relationships between those in studies and the working industry.

SBID also founded Get me 2 the Top, a second competition that provides much needed work experience which aims to give winners the tools and advice they need to kick-start their careers while studying. It runs both in the UK and Ukraine. Winners are awarded a 3-month paid internship with a leading design agency, architectural firm or manufacturer.


In 2019 SBID launched a new digital platform SBIDPro, a global engagement and knowledge hub for professional members. The platform is open to manufacturers now and will be available for designers soon.

SBID International Design Awards

Launched in 2011, the SBID International Design Awards recognise, reward and celebrate talented businesses and individuals in the interior industry. Since their inception, the awards have been regarded as one of the international design industry’s biggest accolades. The categories cover a range of design sectors, including hospitality, wellness and high-end residential.

2019 and beyond

In 2019, SBID is marking its 10-year anniversary at international events, including Salone Del Mobile and Maison & Objet.

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