How to Make a Career in Interior Design in 2022: There’s something beguiling and glamorous about being an interior designer. Professional interior designers are asked to revamp homes from top to bottom and are given complete access to the home (and an amount of cash) to get the job done.
It’s a role that requires a lot of imagination and a finger that’s continually on the pulse of home-based styles and fashions. But it’s also a job that requires meticulous planning and an eye for the small details. As such, there’s plenty to get on top of to become an interior designer. Here’s how you’ll get there this year.
Now, this isn’t a prerequisite for an interior designer, but it’s something that can really help you win the high-value clients. Of course, the best qualification that you can get is directly in the field, going to either a vocational college or a university to study the intricacies of interior design. That’ll really give you the experience and know-how to wow the clients that you’re trying to win later in your career.
Still, a background in the creative fields in general can help to prove that you’re someone with an eye for design. This might include having been an illustrator or a graphic designer, or even someone who’s helped with the architectural aspect of homes in the past. Any experience (and especially qualifications) will help you win more customers when you do set out in your career.
Getting qualifications is by no means the only way to impress potential clients when you approach them as an interior designer. You can also get on-the-job experience, which is often just as valuable as studying for a number of years to receive a qualification. Here are a few ways in which you can get the experience necessary to succeed in interior design:
- Contact a local interior designer and ask whether they’d be interested in taking you on as an apprentice. You can even offer to work for free for the first weeks, as the experience alone will be valuable
- Work on building sites, so that you’re aware of how homes work, which is a crucial part of the interior design journey
- Work in furniture stores or other interior design outlets so that you become aware of the styles that are out there and those that are in fashion
- Work as a blogger or as an influencer in the world of interior design
All of these options are open to anyone with an interest in moving towards interior design. They’ll help make you a more rounded individual, with knowledge that you can bring to bear in your later career.
Interior designers have for decades had to rely on their imaginations in order to picture the potential of an interior to completely transform into something that the client is looking for. That’s not the case today, thanks to a raft of technological solutions that can help any graphic designer visualize the interiors that they’re trying to create.
One of the more popular versions of this software is called Sketchup, though it’s regarded as a relatively basic and straightforward 3D modeling tool that doesn’t quite have all the features which ambitious interior designers might like to take advantage of. Find Sketchup alternatives with more features for you to play with, in order to begin really harnessing the power of technology to help you design better and more beautiful interiors.
There’s always an up-hill battle when you’re first starting out in any field. You won’t have the contacts nor the reputation to really find the jobs that most excite you, and if you go it alone you might take weeks to find your first project. That’s why we’d recommend you work with an agency or interior design firm first, so that you can get your first handful of projects under your belt.
You’ll often begin work as an assistant, which will mean that you’re not the individual who’s directly in charge of making decisions. Rather, you’ll help to organize the logistics of the plan, and you’ll source the materials and the furnishings that’ll come together into the vision of your mentor. This will give you valuable experience in the planning of projects, which will come in useful later in your career. It’ll also help you see how experienced interior designers work. Therefore, in these roles make sure you’re paying attention to your seniors: they have lessons to teach you that’ll help you become more successful later in life.
After some time working as an assistant, you’ll likely be presented with a choice: work towards a promotion so that you’re put in charge of projects or decide to go it alone and become your own self-employer businessperson. Your decision will depend on the level of autonomy that you wish to have in your career. Bear in mind that you’ll earn more from each commission if you work without a company – as you’ll keep all of the profits for yourself.
Given that monetary incentive, most interior designers set their sights on independence as soon as possible in their careers. That makes sense and it means that you’ll have more creative freedom as well as the freedom to choose the projects you work on. The key thing here is finding those projects.
As a newly independent interior designer, you’re looking to market yourself far and wide in order to draw in customers. Use social media and build an online portfolio so that people can check out your work. Be willing to put in the hours scouring through websites and getting in touch with potential clients. Make business cards and flyers and place them around town.
This might be a slow and iterative process, but you’ll quickly become known as a brilliant interior designer in your area, and work of mouth will win you more and more clients over time. Be patient and trust that you’ll find the projects eventually. Soon, you’ll find yourself turning people down.
Become a successful interior designer by following the tips outlined in this article – aimed at those who are just starting out in their careers.