Who To Ask To Create Spaces That Positively Affect How You Live?
Are you interested in creating spaces that positively affect how you live, work and play? The function of an Interior Designer is exactly that!
Interior design is a multifaceted discipline that deals with the art and construction of indoor environments. From concept to project management and execution, Interior Designers are creative problem solvers. Interior Designers think in three dimensions and are responsible for creating spaces and places that are stimulating, functional, user-centered and sustainable and at the same time, makes a statement!
Interior design is planning and design of man-made spaces, can be part of environmental design and is closely related to architecture. Creating pleasant environments are old as civilization itself, however the field of interior design is relatively new. Since at least the middle of the 20th century more descriptive terms have come into use. The term interior design indicates a broader area of activity and at the same time suggests its status as a serious profession.
The interior design industry has a range of specialized fields and niches that go beyond simple design tasks of enhancing the quality and functionality of interior spaces.
It is without a doubt that, as the industry keeps evolving, interior designers are redefining their roles in the profession; Many of them are re-assessing what it means to be a professional interior designer.
While most people are of the opinion that the scope of Interior Design Services is strictly confined to the inside of buildings – homes, offices, schools, health facilities, restaurants, etc…, it’s now known that exterior spaces, merchandising, and architecture are also fields that falls within this occupation.
What exactly is the function of interior designers?
An interior designer’s function is basically to create interiors that are not only aesthetically pleasing with the use of decorative furnishings, colour schemes, lighting, and materials, but also to ensure that spaces are versatile, functional, efficiently laid out, and safe to live within.
Professional designers are also expected to be skillful in technical drawing and space planning and must be able to read floor plans, sectional drawings, elevations, etc, and be aware of building & structural codes, universally accessible standards, and inspection regulations.
Specialized Fields in Interior Design
Specialisation differentiates professional interior designers from creative interior decorators or design enthusiasts.
Interior Designers can include the following niche services:
- Residential interior design services
- Commercial interior designing
- Interior design consultancy services
- Lighting design
- Space planning consultant
- Sustainable design
- Interior design project management services
Residential Interior Design Services – Residential
Residential interior designers can provide services for homeowners, architects, and real estate companies, to name only a few. In residential design, an Interior Designer can carry out minor or major home renovations, and may include developing plan layouts and floor plans. Renovation services can include anything from removal /repositioning of doors, windows and walls, to more tasks like space allocation, building custom cabinetry (kitchens, storage facilities, and wardrobes), custom furniture, and flooring.
Residential interior designers will also help clients choose furniture items, furnishings, textures, interior décor, and lighting and its effective use, space allocations, and colour schemes. They may also advise on style selection, use of artwork, flooring and window treatments.
Interior Designing – Commercial
Commercial interior designers provide interior design advice and services for clients seeking tasks like space planning and design of offices, restaurants, hotels, entertainment centers, studios, shops, boutiques, museums, banks, schools and libraries.
In many instances, a commercial interior designer may work closely with architects, builders, and engineers to ensure the overall design meets functional goals and is within a stipulated budget. Professionalism is reflected in creating interior spaces that are conducive, aesthetically pleasing, functional and empowering for the employees, their customers, and/or clients.
Commercial interior design services also include selecting appropriate interior finishes for floors, walls and ceilings, allowing for acoustics and effective lighting, choosing furniture and furnishings, and ensuring that all interior elements are well placed together and arranged in a manner appropriate for the commercial venue.
Interior Design – Consultancy Services
An interior designer may also offer consultancy services, as this is also an aspect of interior design. Professional services as an interior design consultant entail advising clients on anything related to the design of any interior space.
An Interior design consultant will typically work with an architectural or design consulting firm, or directly with a homeowner. Real estate firms also make use of interior design consultants to help ‘up’ the appeal of property for potential buyers.
There are many fundamental tasks associated with consultancy services providing vision for the spaces in their scope of work. They include first meeting with prospective clients to assess their design needs, navigating through all areas of importance to creating schematic floor plans and 3D and virtual reality renderings of designed spaces, formulating plans and blueprints that also specify all materials, where to source for products (if procurement and sourcing services are not included) and budgeting.
Efficient planning, organising and timeframe-driven execution are imperative to ensure successful projects.
Lighting design is very important for all interior spaces. For special effects it is an art on its own and services offered include developing lighting designs for residential and commercial projects ranging from homes and offices to theatres, museums, stages, event locations, malls, shops, cinemas, etc.
Lighting design services may also include creative illuminations of exterior residential or corporate super structures, fountains, parks, monuments and many other outdoor landmarks. A lighting designer, will decide and choose the types, styles, arrangement, and amount of lighting that’s best for the purpose of the interior space. It is likely they may have to work with electrical engineers and lighting fixtures merchandisers to achieve a successful implementation of your project.
Interior Design – Space Planning Consultant
This field in interior design can also fall within the interior design consultancy niche, however, it can equally be a stand-alone service. It involves space planning, space allocation, and a functional and adaptable interior design layout.
All professional interior design advice commences at the start of a project and is interpreted through space planning and whether they are developing a layout for a single room, an apartment, or an entire building /house. It is necessary to identify space requirements and functions, based on the client needs and space availability.
Before a Space Planning Consultant proceeds, he/she will need to determine:
- Where furniture and furnishings will be placed
- Whether space expansion or reduction is required
- How to create a traffic-flow that works efficiently
- How to meet the stipulated building codes
- How it will fit into a pre-determined budget
- How to ensure the space design is practical
Sustainable Interior Design
This is one of the fastest-growing areas of interior design in the 21st century. Sustainable Interior Design services incorporate healthy living and “green” or sustainable lifestyle with conventional interior design. It focuses on improving the quality of indoor life, as well as saving energy, reducing pollution and the impact that interior decoration materials have on our environment.
From the collection of rainwater to supplement wastewater needs, to using eco-friendly materials like bamboo and organic cotton, innovation is key as there are several ways to take a green approach when it comes to designing a sustainable interior space.
As a sustainable interior designer, projects address the following:
- Efficient use of space (e.g. micro-housing developments) by reducing interior construction materials, using built-in amenities, and generally reducing other resources to a bare minimum.
- A reduction in energy consumption – flooring with ‘warm’ materials like sustainable wood, windows and doors that maximize energy efficiency, and water-saving fixtures.
- Waste reduction by using reclaimed /recycled materials. For instance, furniture and furnishings are repurposed or refurbished to give them a new lease on life.
- The use of energy-efficient lighting by maximizing the use of natural daylight and minimizing the use of excessive artificial lighting.
- A conscious effort to use non-polluting materials and products and rather, use safe chemical-free products like woods that haven’t been treated with pesticides and hypoallergenic furniture.
Content is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
Why Boulevard Collection International?
The images in this article are our work and represent but a few design renderings of projects we designed and executed – all designs are done inhouse by our own designers.
Life’s pretty straight without Boulevard™. We bring interior to life; it is different. Look in the design, it makes everything better – it is how Boulevard™ design is done. A passionate pursuit of design; it’s that feeling. We have proven that detailed planning, comfort quality and livability are truly key to successful design of interiors. The variety in our projects have given us a wide and well-founded scope of experience to enable us to successfully execute contracts.
In line with our approach to comprehensively fulfil almost every aspect of interior design and décor supply for projects, is our ability to also correctly assist with various disciplines in our scope of works. Over many years, we have established healthy relationships with numerous international and local suppliers and service providers engaged in our operations.
Employed by Boulevard™ as interior designers and subsequently as project managers, these suppliers and service providers engage in clearly defined integral functions and capacities, as instructed by Boulevard™, to successfully complete our projects both technically and practically correct. As project managers we take from our clients all that needs to be managed in a way that we are empowered to act on behalf of our clients, whilst in conjunction with their ideals and input.
Relevant subject matter pertaining to unique and additional disciplines we are involved with in our projects, are fittingly researched and studied extensively – to the extent that we are fully capable to correctly advise on numerous aspects relevant to projects. In other instances, we have on numerous occasions successfully managed such disciplines that require careful and detailed input.
Our knowledge base further has its foundations from various suppliers and service providers we have approached over years to guide and advise us on different aspects, so as to enable us to confidently be in a position to provide correct and value-adding advice as well as problem-solving initiatives to clients. Such suppliers and service providers have been in our network for many years and understand our methodologies, goals and aspirations to successfully complete our projects – hassle-free to clients.
As a result, Boulevard Collection International™ is especially appointed in projects in foreign countries where we successfully manage and implement various aspects required for projects. Our infra-structure and methodologies applied ensures that the logistics of eg distance in another country, hardly plays any role in the success of our project goals and implementation.
Establishing the interior theme visually and ensuring we have a well-defined road map for the project, our expertise adds value to projects. It is a healthy idea to appoint professionals to guide the process along, albeit at a cost. Involving your interior designer at an early stage of your project, pays dividends and even save money with mistakes made that only surface during the build. Interior designers are known to also assist with proportional concepts of spaces and this is where we need to address the focus and goal of your project.
Author: Reneé Engelbrecht
REFERENCES: Boulevard Collection International™, The Art and Career Project, Design Centre & Touch Nickel