What you may not know about interior design

As Michael Smith once said to me, "Why do you need school? Everything you need to know is on Top Design."  I am pretty sure he was kidding.

On Twitter last week I was directed to a lovely rant about DIY design on the blog of Anne Lubner Designs and it also reminded me of a favorite post on Vicente Wolf's Blog.  To top it all off, on Apartment Therapy Friday there was a post about "Call A Designer.Com".  Whew!  This is How to Get A Designer Going 101!  Designers are angry at those that didn't go to school (umm that's you Michael Smith, Vicente Wolf, Robert Stilin) and get licensed.  Designers are angry at the clients for thinking they have the talent and know-how to do it themselves (they watch HGTV for goodness sake!).  They are angry at other Designers for giving too many secrets away (free advice on blogs! Advice by the minute!)

Its a hard time to be in the interior design field, considered a luxury service.  It is also a time when the internet makes all designers incredibility accessible to clients as well as giving clients unlimited advice, how-to information, and sources.  My stance is this, to be a designer you must have talent.  Talent for design, talent to charm clients, talent to manage a project, talent to run a business, and the talent to know your weaknesses and hire people to make up for them.

And you potential clients out there, yes there are some things that you can do yourself, but there are big and little things you don't even know to think about.  Designing is more than just picking out furniture and paint colors.  Does the backplate cover the jbox?  Is the boxspring level with the siderail?  Are you going to railroad the fabric?  Will that awful roll-arm sofa you just bought fit through your front door?  And beware that former-lawyer turned Designer you hired from your Mommy and Me Class may have just as much experience as you.  And please don't let your contractor choose your plumbing or the location of the light switches because he got a good deal from some guy.