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When a client hires an interior designer, they know that their own taste has some limitations. Oftentimes, they are not able to handle the details involved in producing a comprehensive and cohesive design palette for the project at hand, whether it is a whole house or one room. A client also wants to avoid the uncertainty of the unknown. That is why building a strong client-designer relationship and forming trust with a client is a vital step in the design process. Once this connection and understanding is formed, the interior designer can create a sophisticated space that will reflect the client’s personality while also making the space functional for their daily lives.

Discovering Personal Style

When hiring an interior designer, a client may be preparing for the question, “what is your style?” While common industry-driven terms such as Mid-Century Modern, Minimalism, Boho, Rustic, or Eclectic help an interior designer to understand a client’s style on a broad spectrum, it can be difficult to put one’s interior design aesthetic in a box. Maybe their style is a mix of Modern and Traditional, or they enjoy a Minimalistic look with an Eclectic feel. An interior designer will most likely ask questions and use visuals to help the client discover their personal styles, such as a client questionnaire and project look books.

personal style, Spaces with Personal Style

The artwork sets the backdrop for capturing the essence of the client’s style in this bedroom setting. © Wendy McEahern

Determining a Budget

The first step to a successful design project is a well-thought-out budget. However, developing an interior design budget can be challenging. An interior designer can help determine a budget that is right for each client, based on their personal wishes. When creating a budget, one must consider several elements: the design concept and detailed space plan, the quality wanted throughout the home, and final décor products and needs.

Calculating an interior design budget can be difficult for someone who has never managed a design project, especially a whole-home redesign. Hiring an experienced interior designer takes away the headache and stress of project management and puts faith in someone to bring your dream home to life but within budget. When beginning such a project, a professional will consider its uniqueness and budget and be certain that the design reflects the clients’ needs and style.

Managing Expectations

Managing client expectations is a crucial aspect of the interior design industry—especially during these uncertain times. In order to build a strong foundation for a trustworthy and rewarding client-designer relationship, a mutual understanding must be established from the start to finish of the design process. An interior designer should be upfront, honest, and prepared to answer any client questions. Once the budget has been discussed, the designer can dive deeper into the specifics of the project plans, describing them in detail to avoid any confusion later on. Oftentimes, an interior designer will create a design presentation to help the client see their vision and get them excited for what’s to come.

Authenticity is Key

Getting to know the client in an authentic way is the key to capturing their personal style. Seeing their unspoken wishes and picking up on subtle queues is the best way to ensure the design plans showcase their personality while also adding a professional touch.