Entering Interior Design Awards: 5 Things to Consider
Entering interior design awards can be a great way to showcase your work and network with others in the industry, but not all design awards are the same. With so many creative competitions out there, you need to look closely at what you’re really getting into. Here are our top tips for determining which awards are worth your time – and which are not!
Who’s really the winner?
It’s easy to get carried away with daydreams of clutching that prized trophy on the podium but what is the true cost of winning? Some Awards charge successful entrants’ extra fees for exposure, for example to be featured in a winners’ book. We’ve even seen competitions require the winner to pay for their own award! Attending the awards ceremony can be a caveat of ‘winning’ too. If there are hidden fees, you know the award is not really about creative merit. Find out before you enter what is included in your entry fee and weigh up whether it’s really worth it.
Achieving success in industry awards is an opportunity to maximise your professional exposure and reputation. With so many competitions around, you want to ensure you’re targeting the ones that will really allow you to shine. Don’t be seduced by the glitter and instead look at the organisation behind the competition. Are they an industry specialist? Do they really understand the business of interior design? Do previous winners embody the creativity you want to be known for? Why win a vanity trophy when you could collect a prize that resonates in your industry?
Something old, nothing new?
Awards should celebrate the latest and best talent. They are a chance to see how the interior design industry is innovating and discover the rising stars. If the entries include projects that are a few years old, the list of finalists can be a bit of a let down. Imagine a film from 2011 winning the 2019 Oscar for Best Picture? Check the T&Cs clearly to ensure your latest work sits side by side with the freshest creativity out there.
Pressing the ‘submit’ button ten minutes before deadline is a common (and stressful) aspect of awards entries, but some competitions mysteriously lack a deadline. This is confusing for entrants, not to mention unfair, and indicates that the entry process will continue until a category has been filled. Great design competitions exist to reward creative achievement, not to fill sales targets. Ensure the deadline date is clear and avoid the stress by not leaving your submission until the last minute!
Call in the experts
Interior design awards should go to innovative and exciting projects, but who exactly is making that call? Any honour worth its salt should be awarded by an independent panel of experts who display excellence in their own careers. Find out who the judges are: what is their experience? Do they work for reputable companies? Look closely at the judging process – does it note technical or creative excellence, or both? Understanding who the judges are and what they are looking for allows you to submit a project with a greater chance of success.
Use our tips every time you’re considering submitting an awards entry to ensure you’re only entering prestigious awards. If you do win, you’ll know your project has been judged by the best to be a truly inspiring example of creative excellence.
To find out more about the SBID International Design Awards, visit www.sbidawards.com