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    What is Interior Design and Decoration?
   

 

To start with, a ‘Designer’ could be classified as person who can visualize, arrange, organize and execute an idea.

Interior design and decoration, as the name suggests, is related to space design and decoration.  It is the art of developing spaces, which are aesthetically appealing, technically sophisticated and satisfying the needs of their occupants. An interior designer not only works on residential spaces, but also commercial spaces (offices, restaurants, hotels, airports, hospitals, etc), and each discipline requires its own set of rules, regulations and guidelines.  Hence, Interior Designers need to be extremely skilled, imaginative, creative, organized and most of all, highly disciplined.

In order to be successful, Interior Designers must have sound knowledge of building materials, construction techniques, technical drawings, code of ethics and last but not the least, business practices.
An interior designer must have a clear understanding and a level of expertise to be able to manage a typical project, which may include any or all of the following tasks:

 

   
   
Understanding a client’s needs, analyzing the goals of the said project, and developing the necessary documents to support the successful execution of the project.
Based on human science and behavioral study develop a suitable plan layout in 2D and or 3D, in order to best accommodate the client’s project needs.
   
Research and analysis of the project based on all safety norms, either environmental, health or rules and regulations based.
   
To incorporate the best suitable materials, textures, color schemes and related finishes, so as to project the perfect design concept meeting functional, maintenance and safety requirements.
   
Designing and Drawing the right furniture and fixtures, with detailed product descriptions and pricing, to facilitate procurement and installation of new furniture.
   
Guiding the client with project analysis services, including estimations, financial flow and schedules, material procurement management, project execution guidelines, etc.
   
Preparation of construction documents, consisting of plans, elevations, details and specifications, to illustrate non-structural and/or non-seismic partition layouts; power and communications locations; reflected ceiling plans and lighting designs; materials and finishes; and furniture layouts.
   
Services for liaison with government authorities and other regulatory bodies, to confirm the adherence with rules and regulations, and to get all necessary sanctions for the said project.
   
Coordination and collaboration with other service providers and labor contractors.
   
 
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These and several such services are often tasks at the hands of Interior Designers.
     
   
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Steps involved in the Interior Design Process.
     
   

Regardless of the type of project or space, the design process remains consistent for interior designers. The designer needs to come up with a master plan for the project. In order to come up with this plan, the designer must identify and document exactly what needs to be done. This is known as the programming phase. The first step is to understand the client's needs and the scope of the work to be done. Things to take into account in the first preliminary meetings are function, preferences, budget and general design direction. The next step is to visit the actual site where the work is to be done. The designer must document the space by taking note of its measurements and existing conditions. Designers traditionally drew their plans by hand, but those of today use CAD (computer-aided drafting) software. Once this information has been gathered, the designer will formulate the design plan and propose a budget for the client. The designer and client will continue to meet several more times until every piece of the design package has been reviewed and confirmed with the client. Due to the nature and scale of an architectural interior design project, it is absolutely essential that the designer eliminates as many surprises as possible. Surprises can end up being very costly. It is also important for the designer to foresee any issues that may occur in order to prevent them from happening. This comes with a proper education and experience.

Upon completion of the programming phase of the design process, the designer goes on to specify materials, finishes, furnishings and the equipment to be used in the space. Depending on the scope of the project and its parameters, the designer may need to submit drawings in to building planning departments. Most designers are not licensed architects, and licensed architects or engineers are needed for an approval stamp on the drawings.

When the entire planning process is completed and the project is ready to begin, the designer will help oversee the implementation phase. Some designers work with their own contractors, others leave the contractor selection up to the clients. Either way, the designer must oversee the contractors to make sure that the design is being executed properly and not compromised.

 
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So who are interior designers?
     
   

Interior designers are certified professionals who work to design internal environments that are pleasant, comfortable and functional. Some designers exclusively handle big projects like hotels, airports, major office buildings or interiors of theme parks. Others help clients in decorating their private homes. Designers prepare plans and other specifications for interior construction, furnishings, colors and lighting.

This has to be done keeping in mind the client's tastes, budgets and other requirements. Nowadays many designers use computer-aided designing methods to plan their layouts, as they are more precise and add color to their imaginations. At the end of the planning phase, they present their designs to the client for approval and make requested changes to their plan. 3-D presentations, scaled dimensional space plans and animated walkthroughs allow an interior designer to present design ideas more effectively to the clients.

It is also essential that the plans meet state laws, including building codes. So it is imperative that an interior designer keeps pace with the regulations and requirements of the state. The design plans need to conform to structural requirements, health and safety issues and building codes.

   

 
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