Using an Interior Decorator

Updated on March 23, 2014
X.O. asks from Naperville, IL
5 answers

Have any of you used it in order to get the biggest bang for your buck?

I don't want to waste too much time and money buying items that might not function/look the way I expect them to, and then have to return them, or just not figure out what I'm doing until later. I tend to just buy items a little at a time and hope they come together.

How do interior decorators charge for their services? Is it a flat fee? Do I just give them a list of furniture pieces and accessories that we need, a budget, and they fill in the blanks, including their fee?

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answers from Washington DC on

The price range and the method of charging can vary greatly between designers, just as their specialties can vary greatly. Before becoming a mom I used to have a small interior design business. I charged by the hour for shopping, painting, design time, etc for some jobs and for others I gave them a flat quote for time and materials. It really depended on the job I was doing and the client's needs.

First, make sure they offer a free consult to come to your home and let you know what they can offer. While talking on the phone give them an idea of what you are looking for and your budget. You will know if they are in your ballpark this way. Remember, just because they come to your home for this consult you don't have to hire them. It is just to see if they are a good fit.

You can find a designer on line, in the phone book, or better yet, by word of mouth. Do you have any friends' homes that you absolutely love? Ask them if they used a designer-- or maybe they have great taste and may want to help you themselves.

Or you could find one at a furniture store or design center that you love. You may receive a discount on their merchandise or free design service this way. The catch here is that they will be pushing their own stuff.

Remember, designers have to make money too, so you will be paying extra for their knowledge, experience and sources, but if you don't know where to start, if could be very beneficial in the end. Not to mention saving you the leg work and headaches!

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answers from Chicago on

My dear friends MIL is a decorator. She comes in and gives ideas on what you should get to accessorize the space. She then brings multiple items for you to choose from. She charges for the items and her time.

You can also go to furniture stores like Walter E Smith, Pottery Barn, etc and show them pics of your space and they will help.

Do you have a friend that you like their style or that is good with decorating? Perhaps you can have them help. I've decorated a couple of my friends rooms. She gives me full reign and I have fun doing it, this way she doesn't have to pay a decorator.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

We had an interior designer for our main living space -kitchen, dining, living. Referred by a friend. Her house was beautiful. This lady brought all the stuff and we paid her by the hour and paid for the stuff. We had a small budget. She stay for a couple of hours and hung and set up her stuff. Turned out beautiful for $900.00.

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answers from Richland on

I have never used one but my ex's mom has. To me the biggest waste was not her fee but that you paid full price for all the items and it wasn't that great. Like the way she decorated her old house was better. Maybe that was a one of.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Santa Barbara on

Pottery barn has interior designers. I am not sure if this store is your style or if you want a designer that will not be from a specific store.

They offered to come to my house. I was not in the mood to commit to being pressured into buying a lot, or else I would have had her come out.

1 mom found this helpful
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