Ask the Expert: How do I choose an interior designer? 10th July 2020 | IN DESIGN ADVICE | BY SBID

Your home should reflect your personality and taste and be attuned to your unique needs. However, achieving this on our own can be a real challenge, especially when your work and family commitments place so many demands on your time. When investing both time and money into a project, it’s important to know how to choose the best designer for it. You want your designer to unlock the space’s full potential by doing this in a creative yet practical manner. So how do you choose the right interior designer for you? SBID Accredited Designer, Katie Malik, founder and creative director of Katie Malik Interiors outlines some important considerations.

choose interior designer, Ask the Expert: How do I choose an interior designer?

Style Match

It’s absolutely essential that you research the designer’s portfolio to see whether you like their style and completed projects. Don’t approach designer’s based solely on their proximity to you or how high they come up in google search. You have to like what you see, so number one criterion when choosing a designer is the style match.

Reviews, Recommendations & Accreditation

A good interior designer will have the perfect balance between focusing on the bigger picture ultimately leading up to the final outcome, whilst also focusing on the immediate jobs which need to be done. Therefore, look for reviews and recommendations of the company. It’s important to understand the quality of work and the team you’re hiring before you fully commit.

Also, check whether the designer is accredited by or a member of a professional body, such as SBID – this would give you an added security that the work will be completed to the highest industry standards.

choose interior designer, Ask the Expert: How do I choose an interior designer?
choose interior designer, Ask the Expert: How do I choose an interior designer?
choose interior designer, Ask the Expert: How do I choose an interior designer?

Briefing & Action Plan

A good brief and a full and open discussion about what the job entails is the best way for your designer to work out a fee and a project timeline. Experienced interior designers have an abundance of planning experience when it comes to undergoing a design project, and they can provide a step by step plan of action with a start and end date. This takes the stress away from you, so you don’t have to this about the logistics so when choosing an interior designer, ask whether they can provide a detailed plan of the project and the space.

Vision & Design Advice 

An experienced designer will have a wealth of knowledge and contacts that they’ve built up over their career to enable them to collaborate with other professionals, such as lighting designers, landscape and garden designers, and architects. A good interior designer will take an interest in the architect’s vision for the building too.

You want a designer who is fully invested in the project – someone who’s passionate and willing to ensure your project is complete to the highest quality possible. You want someone who will take all of your own ideas on board and develop them in the best possible way, adding their own professional opinion. Look for an interior designer who will push you completely out of your own comfort zone, encouraging you to go for an original and refreshing design.

Click here to discover how to choose the right builder for a project.

The new Ask the Expert blog series invites you submit the questions about interior design you want help finding answers to, whether you’re a consumer looking to redecorate your home or professional looking for expert business advice. Please submit your questions to [email protected]

About the Author

Katie Malik, founder & creative director of Katie Malik Interiors built her career in residential interior design, assisting on projects in New York, Chicago and London before setting up her practice in 2014. Inspired by colours, the interplay between symmetry and asymmetry and wellbeing, Katie’s aim is to bring authenticity to each project. 

If you’d like to become SBID Accredited, click here to find out more.