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What to Look For in a Designers Interior Portfolio?

Everyone wants to live in a home that’s beautiful, warm and comfortable. You may have plenty of ideas from pinterest but not necessarily the skill set or the time required to bring it to life on your own. This is where interior designers come in. With an eye for aesthetics and the ability to understand spaces and what looks good in them, interior designers can transform spaces and bring your vision to life. The question you may have is how to hire designers for your home? You need to look into the designers interior portfolio. This is a presentation of all the work they have completed until now. Here are a few points to keep in mind when you go through a portfolio.

Underlying Design Style

Every project is a balance of the designer and the client’s aesthetic sense. If the client has a maximalist style, the designer will need to channel it and work around it. That said, people choose to work with a particular designer based on the designer’s own style too. So, you will be able to see an underlying design aesthetic binding all the projects. From a small studio to a 6000 ft luxury apartment, there will be a common design story running through everything. Think of it as the designer signing their work. Once you identify this style, see whether it matches your style or not. It may be a colour that you see in every project, a style of lights or maybe an architectural detail.


It isn’t true that only the elite can afford designers interiors. Interior designers work with a range of budgets. The same space can be decorated within a 5 figure or a 7 figure budget. Some designers take on only big-budget projects while others are more versatile. So, you need to see the average budget of projects they have worked on. If you’re working with a small budget, you’re more likely to find interior designers just starting their careers.

Ability to Stick to Budgets

When you set a budget for your interiors, you must set a buffer. Interior projects have a tendency to cross the initial budget by about 10%. This isn’t something to be alarmed at. But, if more than a few of the designer’s projects overshoot the initial budget but a high percentage, it’s cause for concern. There are two reasons this may have happened. The clients may have set an unrealistic budget but it would have been the designer’s responsibility to give them a more realistic budget at the onset of the project. Another reason could have been unclear decisions. On paper, changing the colour of a wall seems like a very minor change but in reality, it involves multiple steps- each with a cost.

In short, if you look at budgets that have gone out of control, the fault may not be solely with the designer but given that the designer is the professional in this space, it falls under his/her responsibility.

This is a presentation of all the work they have completed until now. Just like adding stair skirting boards.

Colour Preferences

Not every project a designer completes makes its way to their portfolio. It’s quality, not quantity that counts here. They’ll pick up their best work for their portfolio. So, when you look at their portfolio, you’ll get an idea of what they consider ‘good’. Along with design styles, colours is an important point to consider. Any colour can be made to look good depending on how it’s used. Try and get an idea of how the designer balances colours and what tones they prefer. Some designers may show a tendency to use neutral shades while others may have a bolder palate.

Scope of Work Possible

Lastly, interior design is a lot more than just placing a sofa against a wall and accessorizing the coffee table. There may be construction work involved, furniture that needs to be built in, lights and electricals to be installed, wall finishes, modular kitchens, etc. When you see a portfolio, consider the scope of work completed and what all the designer’s team is capable of. Some designers have in-house teams while others outsource work to contractors. The former is preferable as quality control is easier.

Do You Need an Interior Designer?

You don’t move into a new home every day. When you move into your home, you want it to be perfect in every way. Remember, it costs more to undo and redo rather than do something correctly the first time. So, to save yourself the trouble of second guessing your choices and having to constantly work on your home, it is always best to work with an experienced designer. Designers interiors are all about making a space aesthetically pleasing, functional and comfortable for you. It’s worth the investment. So, if you’re thinking of a new home, start browsing through portfolios and shortlisting designers you can see yourself working with.

Find here – How to Buy Your First Home.

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