Welcome to part 2 of my 4 part series: What It’s Like Working With Full Service Designer. In part 1 I explained my onboarding process and what happens at our initial consultation. If you missed it – you can check that blog post out HERE.
After our initial 2 hour consultation, design fee and scope of work proposal is signed, and 50% of the design fee is paid I move onto my faaaavorite part – CREATE.
My Creative Process
At this point in the design process I have a very good idea of your wants/needs/wish list/style preferences, so I get to work on scheming up a custom and personalized design concept for your home! I draw my inspiration from YOU and your family, from the colors that you are drawn to, from travels that you have taken that have a place in your heart, from inspirational images that you have shared with me. I pull out my designer tool kit which allows me to bring those inspirational ideas to life. I use design books, magazines, fabric samples and textiles to create a scheme. Once I have a general scheme or mood that I am going to work with for your space I will start sourcing actual products or finishes that will be implemented in the design plan.
Now let’s talk a little bit more about that specifically. WHERE do I source products from. I am going to write an entire blog post on this topic because this is one of my most common questions.
As an Interior Designer I have access to the coveted trade only resources as well as purchasing directly from the manufacture at a designer discount. Think of it this way — Do you love Serena & Lilly? Well, Serena & Lily doesn’t manufacture their own products. They purchase from various vendors. I have direct access to THOSE vendors that sell to Serena & Lily, but I don’t have to pay retail price – and neither do you when you work with me!
I source majority of items directly from my vendors to ensure that you receive a custom design – that can’t be purchased off Wayfair! I even work with fabric workrooms to custom upholster pieces to make your space that much more LUX! Have you ever found a piece, let’s say a bench, that you LOVE – but it doesn’t come in the right fabric? Well, you CAN have that perfect bench WITH the perfect fabric when you work with an Interior Designer! It’s all about those details, it’s what makes the design! As an Interior Designer I curate all of those details for you to pull together a perfectly tailored design for you.
Working with Trades People
During this creative process I am also pulling in trades people to gather estimates for work that needs to be done. For example, a contractor for a built in or for refacing your fireplace, or my drapery workroom to get measurements and estimates for custom window treatments, or an electrician for any electrical work that may need to be done.
This may include another visit to your home in order to obtain these estimates – but again, you will not need to actively participate if you don’t want to. In fact – I encourage my clients to wait until design presentation as it can sometimes be difficult to see the whole picture – without getting the entire picture (which you will get a whole lot of at our design presentation meeting!) 🙂
All of my full service clients receive similar deliverables in order to explain and present my design concepts and ideas. These include (but are not limited to)
Floor plans (either furniture layouts or if doing kitchen/bath will do drafted floor plans)
Custom Color Palette
Selection of all furniture items/Accents/Accessories (if doing kitchen/bath will include all material and fixture selections)
Digital presentation board with all key design elements
3d renderings for an additional charge (which is included in proposal as an option)
**This is for client’s who have a difficult time envisioning their space and would like to see all of the proposed elements put into a 3d software program.
Floor Plans/Furniture Layouts
Digital Presentation Board
I bring all textiles and fabrics to our meeting so you are able to visually see and feel each fabric that will go into your space. I also bring large paint samples (with a few options to choose from). If we are doing a kitchen or a bathroom remodel or any project that requires materials – I will also bring material samples such as tile, stone (counter top), hardware, flooring (carpet, hardwood), etc.
For kitchen and bath remodels we will schedule a visit to the showroom so you can actually see plumbing fixtures in person. I would NEVER expect my client to purchase a brand new freestanding tub without being able to sit in in.
I come extremely prepared to our design presentation meeting with accurate budgeting updates. After we review the design concept and plan we will outline the quote for the project to move forward (cost of furnishings, accessories, warehouse receiving/storage, taxes, delivery). I also provide copies of the estimates received from the tradespeople that we will be bringing in to bring your project to life. The invoices for any tradespeople will be paid separately to the individual business in whom you are hiring for the work. Don’t worry though – I have these numbers all broken down for you to easily understand.
Payment Required to Move Forward
In order to move forward to the next stage of my design process 100% of the furnishings fee is due up front. You will be invoiced the full quote amount (as discussed during our design presentation meeting). Once the payment has been made and cleared I will move forward with ordering and procurement – which I will detail in Part 3 of this series!
The remaining 50% balance for the design fee is also due at this time.
Payments can be made via ACH or with Credit Card (3% credit card processing fee).
Of course there are sometimes revisions to be made to the design. Don’t worry – I account for those revision hours up front when I am calculating how many hours it will take for me to complete your project. If any revisions are to be made to the design, I will make those adjustments and we will schedule another design presentation meeting, either in person, or more frequently via Zoom.