How to start your own interior design business

Always wanted to be an interior designer? Here's how to start your own business...

Whats your style?

That’s not to say you need to only take on clients that share your style, but when you start an interior design business, you want to be targeting your ideal clients.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • What is your design style?
  • Do you want to focus on family homes or grand homes? (or both!)
  • Do you want to design homes for families with kids or just couples?
  • Do you want to design both indoor and outdoor spaces?
  • Do you only want to design kitchens & baths?

You get where we’re going with this. Find your niche, find your style, and you’ll attract the right kinds of people.

What type of service will you offer?

The first thing you want to plan are the types of services you’ll offer. As an interior designer, you want to make sure you’re not taking on more than you can handle. If you only want to design kitchens & baths, for example, you need to make it clear from the get-go.

If you’re going the e-design route, you need to make a list of specific deliverables.

  • Paint palettes
  • Mood boards
  • 3D renderings
  • Shopping lists
  • Detailed notes
  • Etc.

These might be slightly different than if you were to offer the full interior design experience (i.e., dealing with contractors, manufacturers and suppliers)

Get skilled

To be an interior designer, you don’t necessarily need any qualifications as such, more of a good eye. But, to get into the industry it is important you are skilled and understand the industry. Consider taking an interior design course.

 

Get online

This is a vital. You’re an interior designer, you create beautiful spaces, so when you start an interior design business, you need a website that matches your career. If you don’t have experience building a website, you might want to hire someone to do the job.

Building and perfecting your website will take a while. Don’t rush things, and don’t start promoting your website if it’s incomplete. Remember – your website is a reflection of you as a designer.

Build a portfolio

You need to showcase your designs and work to gain clients.

When you first start an interior design business, you might not have a portfolio yet – but that’s ok. You don’t necessarily need a huge portfolio at the beginning of your career.

Here’s what you can include in your portfolio:

  • Images of your own home
  • 3D renderings of spaces
  • Mood boards

If you have images of spaces you’ve designed for actual clients, even better! You should definitely include those as well.

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