The Difference Between an Interior Decorator & Designer ~ Designer Homes

What’s the Difference Between an Interior Decorator and an Interior Designer?

Many people believe that the terms “interior designer” and “interior decorator” mean the same thing. But the truth is that this is not the case, and depending on the services you are anticipating, it may be crucial that you understand the difference. 

In the context of a home, interior design refers to the art and science of identifying the behavior of people to develop usable spaces and make aesthetic decisions. Generally, an interior designer holds a tertiary qualification in this discipline (typically a degree or advanced diploma in interior design) and is concerned with every aspect of how interior spaces are laid out, allocated, and used.

An interior decorator refers to the decorating or embellishing of a room with ornamental materials in order to present different esthetic choices. An interior decorator typically holds a qualification in interior decoration (normally a diploma) and is concerned with dressing an interior with things like paint, furnishings, floor coverings, and fabrics for aesthetic purposes. While interior designers can decorate, interior decorators cannot design.

Interior decorator

Decoration, or decor, is the decoration of an area or living space that works with lovely or fashionable objects. They work with color schemes of existing space to make it aesthetically pleasing.

Education/Training: To practice professionally, interior decorators aren’t required to have formal decorating credential or schooling because they focus primarily on aesthetics and don’t participate in renovations or structural planning. The decorating skills come into the picture after the structural planning and execution are completed to focus on making beautiful living spaces. Many professional decorators may have college degrees in related fields, but it is not a requirement for the profession. However, it is important they have flair for decorating.

What they do: Good internal decorators are adept at entering a place and transforming it into a visually appealing space. In the case of new spaces, they can assist customers in determining a style, selecting a color scheme, purchasing furniture, and accessorizing. Also common is the use of interior decorators to tidy up an existing place that needs to be upgraded or refurbished.

Interior Designer

An interior designer collaborates with architects to develop interior structural changes and go through building plans and has a lot of experience in terms of building structure.

Education/Training: Interior design is a profession that requires specific schooling and formal certifications. The work involved usually includes studying color and fabric, computer-aided design (CAD) training, drawing, space planning, furniture design, architecture, and more. Upon graduating, designers often apprentice with a registered and established interior designer before moving on to establish their own companies. In some states and provinces, professional designers are required to pass an exam and become registered with a governing council before they can be called designers.

What they do: Designers are comfortable with spatial planning and can help design and renovate interiors—from drawing up the initial floor plans to placing the last decorative accent. Designers don’t just enhance the look; they also enhance the function of a room. Interior designers may work on a construction or refurbishment project in several ways. There can be a wide range of approaches for different practitioners. Interior designers typically engage in all areas of interior space preparation and completion. They are also concerned with the sculpture, aesthetics, accessibility of work, and movement of the spaces in which we live. Other responsibilities and duties may include:

  • The room’s color palette
  • The arrangement of structures and accessories in the room
  • Wall and floor finishes
  • Ceiling glass window Treatments
  • Cabinet selection
  • Bathroom design
  • Range of toilets and furniture
  • Light design
  • Artworks, plants, and decorative objects like accessories

Interior design is a much longer project as a complete refurbishment of the room is needed. It is a personalized operation, taking every aspect, especially your specific requirements and desires into account and a more detailed interiors approach. Some of the things that separate interior designers from interior decorators are:

  • A degree in Interior Design or Interior Architecture from an accredited 4-year college or university, sometimes in addition to an existing Bachelor’s degree
  • Internship experience under a licensed professional
  • State licensing after passing the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam
  • Knowledge of art history, architecture, furniture, and industrial design
  • Knowledge of design technology (such as CAD) and skills in sketching, modeling, and drafting

If you’re trying to make a hiring decision, but the job you want to be done is to repaint or redecorate a room, an interior decorator can get the job done and might be the right choice.  However,  if you are working on a large design project, such as a kitchen and bath–building your home from scratch or making adjustments to your home’s structure, it is imperative that you choose an interior designer with high-quality experience for functional, safe, and beautiful design. Due to their training, designers typically work on commercial projects and residential spaces.

Designers guarantee the experience and problem-solving skills necessary to bring beautiful structure and design to your home. Designers can work directly with architects, obtain building permits, supervise construction or installation, and give advice on matters including electricity, plumbing, structural changes, ADA requirements, etc.

Designer Homes: Trusted and Reliable Home Design Services 

If you need design services for your project, Designer Homes is here to help you. We offer trusted and reliable home design services that will make your life easier. Our team of designers are experts in their field, so they know what it takes to create the perfect space for you and your family. You don’t have to worry about anything because we take care of everything from start to finish.

In addition to being a source for beautiful high-quality furnishings and decorations, Designer Homes has a team of professional interior designers that are ready to assist with all of your interior design needs. Our services provide multiple layouts and design options that fit your style and budget for any room. You will work with a team of designers and project managers to help you love where you live. Give us a call today!