THE DESIGN PROCESS

 

When you hire an interior designer, you want someone you trust.  You want someone who will listen to your ideas, understand your needs, solve problems, help you avoid costly mistakes, has in-depth knowledge of products, and will help you realize your vision.  There are many decisions to make and a professional designer has the training and expertise to plan, schedule, execute and manage your project from start to finish.  Ridley Interior Design has all of these traits and the expertise to achieve the results you desire.

 
The following information guides you through the design process and what is expected of the interior designer and what may be expected of you.  Some of this process can overlap, but this should give you a general idea of the overall procedures followed in new construction or renovation.
 
Consultation -  
All design services start with a consultation.  It can be a simple two hour consultation for on the spot recommendations, or the start of a larger project.   For larger projects, it is a chance for the designer to meet with you to determine the scope of the project, review your design goals, and discuss your budget requirements.  In order for you to prepare for questions that the interior designer may ask, please look at examples listed under “ASID - Checklist” attachment below.
 
Contract & Retainer –
Either a contract or a letter of agreement is drawn up and signed.  This agreement covers the location, scope of work, and method of compensation that is involved so expectations are clear for both parties.  A retainer may be requested for work to proceed. 
 
Professional Coordination & Collaboration - 
A team of professionals should be retained for consultations on new construction or major remodeling including the architect, interior designer, structural, mechanical, electrical engineers, and other specialty consultants.  The interior designer can assist you in assembling such a team of experts.  The right mix of specialist on a project can save you time and money. 
 
Concepts  & Spaceplanning –
The design process begins with research and analysis of your goals and requirements.  Documents, drawings and diagrams are developed that outline those needs.  Preliminary space plans and sketches are drawn to integrate your needs in the space.  Plans are checked for safety, function, and that they are aesthetically pleasing and appropriate.
 
Material  & Product Selections --
Selection of colors, materials and finishes are presented to you to help convey the design concept.  Interaction between the designer and client assures that the design is meeting the client’s expectations.  Furniture and fixtures may be specified at this time or after the construction phase.  The presentation may involve pictures of products, actual materials, or shopping together.
 
Constructions Documents --
Preparation of construction documents, when applicable, consist of plans, elevations, details and specifications to illustrate non—structural and/or non-seismic partition layouts, electrical placements, lighting designs, materials and finishes, and furniture layouts.  They may be hand drawn or done on AutoCad.  These drawings provide information that is necessary to obtain construction and fabrication bids from subcontractors.  They also may be reviewed and integrated into the architect’s plans on new construction. 
 
Review of documents –
All documentations, bids, and negotiations can be compared and evaluated by the interior designer to obtain the highest quality service at the best rate possible as the client’s agent. 
 
Project coordination / management –
Observation and reporting on the implementation of projects while in progress to completion can be coordinated through the interior designer, as a representative of and on behalf of the client. 
 
Procurement / Purchasing / Shopping –
At Ridley Interior Design, we have access to unlimited sources of vendors and custom products.  Our prices are extremely competitive, so you receive services and products at a good value.  Products may be presented to you through pictures, websites, or actual shopping.  When the designer does the purchasing, you are assured of timely follow through, expediting, and quality control. 
 
Storage Services –
When new construction or remodeling is taking place, the use of an inspection / storage / and delivery service is utilized.  This allows you the flexibility of completion of construction before installation.  Then, everything can be delivered at once.
 
Delivery & Installation –
Whether you want immediate delivery or prefer to wait for a turn-key installation, either option is available.  Immediate delivery may offer a gradual “satisfaction” of progress, whereas, installation of all items at once (including accessories) provides a completed panorama of your interior.
 
Accessorizing - 
Accessorizing puts the finishing touches on your home or office.  It shows your personality.  Existing and new accessories can be brought together to give the home or office that extra spark and vitality needed. 
 
Concierge Services –
Adding some of the luxury touches to an installation provide the ultimate in satisfaction.  Examples of these could be stocking the pantry and refrigerator, some wines for the wine cellar, a catered party, a chef or appliance/electronics tutor, luxury bed linens folded back, etc.

 

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Laura Ridley,
Jun 17, 2010, 2:36 PM
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