A Day In The Life Of: An Interior Designer
What does a day in your life look like?
9:00 am: Head into our boutique showroom office with a cup of tea and a morning snack. Spend the first forty five minutes surfing interior design sites for latest news and trends – I can spend hours doing this – I love the colours and shapes and textures of my job!!
9:45 am:Start sifting through e-mails and responding to client calls.
10:00 am: First client arrives for her consultation. I have already visited her villa several times and made a blueprint for a design layout for the main living rooms which she wants overhauled but today’s meeting is to show her some of the items in the showroom which I included in the blueprint – some key pieces of furniture and a very charming modern gothic looking chandelier as well as several items in catalogues I have in my office. When I started out as an interior designer I didn’t have a showroom but it has really boosted my business to have one and actually show my clients some special items I have sourced from around the world.
12:00 pm: Client leaves. We have gone through brochures, finalized colour choices and even a few fabrics; now I need to source a couple of other fabrics to fit in with the scheme. She didn’t like the furniture items I recommended from the showroom but loved a couch in the catalogue and lot of accessories and we used one table-lamp and cushion as the main accents for the colour scheme. I am happy that we finally have some firm decisions and a very clear way forward. I start leafing through some other brochures and websites as I still need to source her some additional items of furniture to go with the pieces we have agreed on. I have a very good idea where to look given her tastes and our discussions and am confident the orders can be placed by end of week.
1:00 pm: Showroom is buzzing with clients. I have a very unique taste and clients love the items I source from Europe and the Far East and mix eclectically. I sell a couple of accessories, a footstool and a lounge-chair to a tourist couple who are awed by the ambiance of the store.
2:00 pm: Meeting at a new development we are doing the show villa for. I have already sourced all the furniture and a lot of it arrives today. Some has been there since beginning of week but I haven’t seen it yet. The fun begins! Unfortunately the set of dining chairs arrives with navy blue chenille fabric rather than the beige I ordered and I am livid! Also the cushions of one of the chairs does not seem right. On the phone trying to sort both matters out. There have been a lot of glitches with this villa – a Venetian mirror I ordered cracked, a bedpost canopy arrived the wrong size for the 4 poster bed in the master bedroom, some cracks on the wall appeared when we hung a major oil pointing . . . but its all part of the job.
4:00 pm: Show villa looking fantabulous and I make a note of some additional items needed but I have to run to another client meeting in the Palm. A European couple are using their Palm villa as a summer vacation home and have requested me to submit a proposal for decorating it as such. I take with me my giant colour boards, fabric samples, sketches and catalogues and head to the Palm. What is it with the traffic, its only 4 o’clock!!!
5:00 pm: Meeting at Palm went very well – we agree tentatively on colour scheme, design and direction. The house will have a very airy feel and our colour scheme will be mostly whites and neutrals with furniture sourced from the far East - and they have a rich collection of oil paintings sourced overseas which I will assist them in framing appropriately around the house. We agree to meet the following week at a furniture outlet store that sells some Asian items they had expressed interest in.
5:15 pm: Back in office and on phone with vendors to enquire about some outstanding orders. Place orders on some fabrics and start looking to source one discontinued fabric that I need urgently to reupholster a couch in a penthouse we completed a while ago.
6:30 pm: Meeting at construction site for another project; take note of measurements of the rooms, the quality of the light – I am responsible for everything in this house from the marble floors to the kitchen, bathroom, walls and lighting as well as all the furnishings. I like to get involved in projects at this early stage as the end product is always more refined looking that way in my opinion! I have already placed all major orders for this project as the client would like to move in as soon as the house is ready. We have been working on this project for months on end and my favourite part I think has been the designs I completed for the children’s bedrooms – delightfully original and colourful!
7:15 pm: Check emails again and head home to my own lovely rather messy flat. How I love the colours and textures and demands of my job!
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