How to find an interior designer

Hello,

I wondered if anyone has any idea how we would go about finding an interior designer?  Our area is Luton, Bedfordshire

Basically the goal is to have the whole house refurbished/renovated to a good standard as its very dated and in need of modernization and so we wanted to get most things done and thought that we should have an interior designer help us work out what to do and then try and find professionals to do the work.

We are a bit novice in getting tradespersons in so any advice would be appreciated.

Sam

Replies

  • twopennytwopenny Forumite
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    Interior designers have very different ideas and taste between them.
    You need to find people who've had work done by them and see how you like it and how easy they were to work with.
    I would think they have a gallery of their previous work online which would be a good starting point and find two or 3 you like.
    I'm sure they have favourite workmen they will recommend but be cautious. They may not be the best but on commission.
    Again ask around your new neighbours who will have a selection of recommendations

    The only normal people you know are the ones you don’t know very well

  • Rosa_DamascenaRosa_Damascena Forumite
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    Ask yourself whether you really need an interior designer. If you are clear about the function of the space and the kind of decor you like, will it be that hard to get the space right? You can always add the finishing touches heh you start living with the refreshed rooms.

    P'Interest is your friend.
    No man is worth crawling on this earth.

    So much to read, so little time.
  • SistergoldSistergold Forumite
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    As above you really really need to get a personal recommendation really due to their different styles. In the end you might find some are as clueless as all of us. At least a self botch will be you trying to move things in the direction you thought you wanted rather than someone giving you what they think you are asking for or worse still doing their own thing. 
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  • edited 14 May at 8:34AM
    DoozergirlDoozergirl Forumite
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    edited 14 May at 8:34AM
    Ask yourself whether you really need an interior designer. If you are clear about the function of the space and the kind of decor you like, will it be that hard to get the space right? You can always add the finishing touches heh you start living with the refreshed rooms.

    P'Interest is your friend.
    We're all about money saving but I will absolutely guarantee you that someone who does this stuff every day will, without doubt, come up with something you haven't thought about or considered.  

    The first house I did looks zero like my last one.   Totally amateur, no idea how to use space.    Countless houses later and my own house actually lends itself to being tidy, because I know how to maximise on what is available and know enough tricks to fill a book.  It's an absolute joy.   

    I'd agree that Pinterest is your friend though.  Even if you employ someone , it's the best opportunity to show someone what your style might be.  
    Everything that is supposed to be in heaven is already here on earth.
  • Rosa_DamascenaRosa_Damascena Forumite
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    1,000 Posts Second Anniversary Name Dropper Photogenic
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    Ask yourself whether you really need an interior designer. If you are clear about the function of the space and the kind of decor you like, will it be that hard to get the space right? You can always add the finishing touches heh you start living with the refreshed rooms.

    P'Interest is your friend.
    We're all about money saving but I will absolutely guarantee you that someone who does this stuff every day will, without doubt, come up with something you haven't thought about or considered.  

    The first house I did looks zero like my last one.   Totally amateur, no idea how to use space.    Countless houses later and my own house actually lends itself to being tidy, because I know how to maximise on what is available and know enough tricks to fill a book.  It's an absolute joy.   

    I'd agree that Pinterest is your friend though.  Even if you employ someone , it's the best opportunity to show someone what your style might be.  
    True, but equally the OP (I assume) does not want to pay for something that may not be quite to their taste or work for them. The process is iterative and inspiration is unlikely to hot the OP overnight but I think there is a real benefit to living with the space for a while. (That is what I am doing with part of my new build - didn't use it at all during winter but it is coming into its own now the weather has turned. It looks fine as it is and I deliberately didn't spend a fortune on dressing it and my ideas are growing all the time).

    I was watching that C4 Ikea makeover show this week. Some aspects were very practical and I loved the parquet flooring but the decor was not to my taste at all. I found the cheap rug on the floor particularly offensive.
    No man is worth crawling on this earth.

    So much to read, so little time.
  • edited 14 May at 9:59AM
    DoozergirlDoozergirl Forumite
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    edited 14 May at 9:59AM
    Ask yourself whether you really need an interior designer. If you are clear about the function of the space and the kind of decor you like, will it be that hard to get the space right? You can always add the finishing touches heh you start living with the refreshed rooms.

    P'Interest is your friend.
    We're all about money saving but I will absolutely guarantee you that someone who does this stuff every day will, without doubt, come up with something you haven't thought about or considered.  

    The first house I did looks zero like my last one.   Totally amateur, no idea how to use space.    Countless houses later and my own house actually lends itself to being tidy, because I know how to maximise on what is available and know enough tricks to fill a book.  It's an absolute joy.   

    I'd agree that Pinterest is your friend though.  Even if you employ someone , it's the best opportunity to show someone what your style might be.  
    True, but equally the OP (I assume) does not want to pay for something that may not be quite to their taste or work for them. The process is iterative and inspiration is unlikely to hot the OP overnight but I think there is a real benefit to living with the space for a while. (That is what I am doing with part of my new build - didn't use it at all during winter but it is coming into its own now the weather has turned. It looks fine as it is and I deliberately didn't spend a fortune on dressing it and my ideas are growing all the time).

    I was watching that C4 Ikea makeover show this week. Some aspects were very practical and I loved the parquet flooring but the decor was not to my taste at all. I found the cheap rug on the floor particularly offensive.
    No interior designer is going to put in anything that you don't like!  It's a design process with a world of options, not a surprise makeover with some free stuff from a sponsor.    I don't watch TV makeover programmes like my paramedic friend can't watch Casualty.  It's not real.  

    A rug is the least of it, as well.  The interior architecture is the most important - the things that theoretically wouldn't fall out of you turned the house upside down.  Little things like door placements can have a massive impact on how useful a space is.  
    Everything that is supposed to be in heaven is already here on earth.
  • gwynlasgwynlas Forumite
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    What you are looking for is an interior design company who will advise on your internal architecture needs, and be able to help you draw up tenders to have the work done not just advise on fabrics, furnishings etc as a store based interior designer might do. A lot depends on how much you are prepared to spend as this service does not come cheap, think the likes of George Clarke, and any tradesman they recommend are probably well paid as well. It would help if you were to convey quite clearly what you were hoping to achieve  within the house. If you are planning a total refurbishment  but done in stages you would have to structural issues such as plumbing and rewiring completed for the whole house initially before going on to decirate and style certain areas. Further questions on here with current layout etc might clarify your thinking.
  • Rosa_DamascenaRosa_Damascena Forumite
    4.4K Posts
    1,000 Posts Second Anniversary Name Dropper Photogenic
    ✭✭✭✭
    Ask yourself whether you really need an interior designer. If you are clear about the function of the space and the kind of decor you like, will it be that hard to get the space right? You can always add the finishing touches heh you start living with the refreshed rooms.

    P'Interest is your friend.
    We're all about money saving but I will absolutely guarantee you that someone who does this stuff every day will, without doubt, come up with something you haven't thought about or considered.  

    The first house I did looks zero like my last one.   Totally amateur, no idea how to use space.    Countless houses later and my own house actually lends itself to being tidy, because I know how to maximise on what is available and know enough tricks to fill a book.  It's an absolute joy.   

    I'd agree that Pinterest is your friend though.  Even if you employ someone , it's the best opportunity to show someone what your style might be.  
    True, but equally the OP (I assume) does not want to pay for something that may not be quite to their taste or work for them. The process is iterative and inspiration is unlikely to hot the OP overnight but I think there is a real benefit to living with the space for a while. (That is what I am doing with part of my new build - didn't use it at all during winter but it is coming into its own now the weather has turned. It looks fine as it is and I deliberately didn't spend a fortune on dressing it and my ideas are growing all the time).

    I was watching that C4 Ikea makeover show this week. Some aspects were very practical and I loved the parquet flooring but the decor was not to my taste at all. I found the cheap rug on the floor particularly offensive.
    No interior designer is going to put in anything that you don't like!  It's a design process with a world of options, not a surprise makeover with some free stuff from a sponsor.    I don't watch TV makeover programmes like my paramedic friend can't watch Casualty.  It's not real.  

    A rug is the least of it, as well.  The interior architecture is the most important - the things that theoretically wouldn't fall out of you turned the house upside down.  Little things like door placements can have a massive impact on how useful a space is.  
    Perhaps I've watched too many interior redesign shows on UK TV Gold / HGTV over the years. I find them fascinating in a car-crash kind of way.
    No man is worth crawling on this earth.

    So much to read, so little time.
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