• Marie-Louise

10 Questions To Ask Before Starting An Interior Design or Home Decor Project

Updated: May 27

I'm currently enrolled in an online course to get an Interior Design Certification. I have no idea what kind of value, if any, this certification will have, but I'm pretty sure I don't need to get one before decorating my own house.


So far, I've learned some pointless nuggets such as the fact that the Romans were the first group of people in recorded history to show off their wealth with lavish interiors. Well, that's very helpful information to have when choosing a paint colour for my kitchen cabinets...


However, I think some modules will definitely prove valuable when designing and decorating our new home. Firstly, this checklist of initial questions will probably save us a ton of time and money:

  1. Who is using this space?

  2. What purpose will the space serve?

  3. Is there a special access requirement?

  4. What kind of feel do you want from the space?

  5. What kind of furniture is essential in this space?

  6. How will these different spaces complement each other?

  7. What is your budget for this space?

  8. What are your future plans for this space?

  9. How will you move within this space and from this space to another? What are the travel paths?

  10. How will the materials used affect the cost in the future?

I'm going to test out this list of questions on our Phase 1 living room. It's a really small room that's open to both the kitchen and the dining room so we need to get the furniture and flow right on this one! Something like this is a bit too 'nordic boho' for my taste, but we probably don't have much more space than what's shown below.


Photo Source


PHASE 1 LIVING ROOM


Who is using this space?

Primarily 2 adults, 2 kids and 1 dog.


What purpose will the space serve?

The living room will be a space for us to gather and chat, play, entertain friends and watch a movie every now and then.


Is there a special access requirement?

At the moment, there is no special access requirement.


What kind of feel do you want from the space?

I want the living room to feel cozy and yet elegant - a friendly space that people want to hang out in that also isn't too scruffy.


What kind of furniture is essential in this space?

The required furniture for the living room is comfortable seating and a large low coffee table for us to play board games on and rest our feet or drinks on.


The one piece of furniture that we already own and are kind of resigned to using in this space is a grey Ikea sectional sofa. Given that our dog and kids are of the age where they still jump all over furniture, spending money on a new sofa seems silly. We'll save that for Phase 2!


Despite not loving sectional sofas, I do quite like the look of this room which has a very similar sofa to ours.

Photo Source


Right, continuing with the questions... On to number 6!


How will these different spaces complement each other?

The living room is open plan to the kitchen and the dining room so it's important that there's some kind of complementary colour scheme so it's not one big clashing mess when you enter the space.


What is your budget for this space?

Our budget for the living room at the first stage is practically nothing - we want to spend as little as possible!


What are your future plans for this space?

Our future plans for this space explain why our budget is so low. The property we're buying has two houses on it - one smaller one where we will initially live and another larger one which we'll be renovating to be our main home. We don't want to pour a ton of money into the smaller home as it will eventually just be used as a guest house.


How will you move within this space and from this space to another? What are the travel paths?

The living room space is kind of awkward as it's off to the left as you enter the house via the main door. The dining room is off to the right of the main door and the kitchen and bathroom are straight ahead, with the kitchen adjoining the living room. Basically, we don't want it open to the front door as that will ruin any coziness so we have limited travel paths in the living room.


How will the materials used affect the cost in the future?

The smaller house is already modernised and ready to live in so we don't get to choose the materials for anything other than furniture. I suppose the only thing we could change is the lightbulbs - that could bring the cost down in the future.


So there you have it - 10 questions that you should ask before you start any home decor or interior design project! Are there any other questions you think are vital to the planning process?


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