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Design Dilemma
Design Dilemma

Using a designer

azelizabethNovember 18, 2012
I have never used a designer and feel I may need to. I am getting overwhelmed and just can't pull the rooms together. How on earth do I find one and what are the key things I should look for? Do they do small projects and is it usually a per hour fee?
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Where do you live? Sometimes stores have in house designers if you are going to buy furniture there e.g.. Ethan Allen or smaller boutiques stores. I would also go to my local paint store and ask if they can recommend someone. Most will do small jobs. Most charge by the hour...starting at about 50$ and sky is the limit. But I find paying a designer saves you money in the long run...they really do prevent costly mistakes.
1 Like    Bookmark   November 18, 2012 at 6:58AM
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I am in AZ.
    Bookmark   November 18, 2012 at 7:00AM
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A Kitchen That Works LLC
Working with a professional designer will save you time, money and quite possibly your sanity. To find designers in your area go to the "Professionals" tab here on Houzz and type in your city to find people in your area. You can do a similar search on a professional trade association such as the National Kitchen ans Bath Association or American Society of Interior Designers. Note that very few states have licensing for designers (unlike contractors) so this is not a good criteria to use in your search however looking for professional certifications is as it demonstrates a dedication to ones profession. Reviewing websites and portfolios is your next step followed by phone interviews. Design services is a relationship business so in the end the most important criteria in selecting a designer is not whether you think they have the best "style" but rather it is do you feel you connect with that person and that they are respectful of your needs, budget and ideas.
    Bookmark   November 18, 2012 at 7:15AM
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Also, ask around and get recommendations as well. Once you do your homework and ask others, you'll find someone that stands out.
    Bookmark   November 18, 2012 at 7:56AM
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The advice above is excellent. I would also like to recommend carefully checking any designer's portfolio, references, and years of experience. As with any field, you will find people with a wide range of styles and competency levels. You might consider paying for an hourly consult so that you can get a sense of the designer's style and expertise. Also, I do not recommend starting a new business relationship with large projects or high price-point or custom pieces. There is often a long wait time for delivery and you can be many thousands of dollars down the road when installations start and you realize that the selections were poorly made. Start with smaller projects and build to larger as your confidence in your designer grows. The extra time will give the designer a chance to get to know your style, too, and will improve his/her chances of success. Though the interview process can feel a little bit awkward, putting in the time and effort upfront will save you money and regret down the road.
    Bookmark   November 18, 2012 at 8:17AM
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