Interior Designer / Stylist / Decorator

People often confuse the work of an interior designer with the work of an interior stylist/decorator. I hear several people come into a well-designed space and profess that they could do the same thing themselves. I’ve seen spaces that have been decorated having all the elements of furniture and decor in the room yet have been poorly designed. What is the difference between these and why should one hire a professional designer in some cases?

What is Interior Decorating? Interior decorating is the furnishing and adornment of a space with pretty things. These may be well-picked items that go with a theme or a particular design style. In the case of a layman/amateur, they may be items that they find appealing at the time they were filling the space. These can make a space look nice or it could end up looking uncoordinated and clumsy.

This is different from what an interior designer does. An interior designer may style and decorate a space, but an interior stylist does not design a space. “Interior design is the art and science of understanding people’s behavior to create functional spaces within a building. Interior designers apply creative and technical solutions within a structure that are functional, attractive and beneficial to the occupants’ quality of life and culture. Designs respond to and coordinate with the building shell and acknowledge the physical location and social context of the project. Designs must adhere to code and encourage the principles of environmental sustainability. The interior design process follows a systematic and coordinated methodology – including research, analysis, and integration of knowledge into the creative process – to satisfy the needs and resources of the client.”

This being said, everyone is free to style their spaces to their needs and budgets. However, it would help to understand some of the different design styles out there so that you could coordinate the spaces and have a natural flow from one space to the next.

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