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What Does It Look Like to Hire a Designer

One of the most frequent questions I get is "What does the process look like if we hire you?" - Such a good and reasonable question!

At a high-level, we design the space for you and then walk with you through construction and installation. (Someone once described us as a Construction Sherpa which makes me laugh, but isn't entirely untrue.)

At a more granular level, there are three phases to design work: 1) Discovery Phase 2) Design Phase and 3) Implementation Phase. Let's break them down...

Discovery Phase

In this phase, we will work with you to figure out what's working and what's not, what you love and what you hate, and your goals and dreams for the space. We start by conducting a site-visit and having an easy conversation discussing all the things above. We want to know about you and your family, how your household functions, and who has opinions that should be considered. We also send you a style survey and ask you to share a Pinterest board or other inspirational photos to get a sense of your style.

Design Phase

This is the fun part for us, but sometimes a quiet part for you as we work diligently to create and package your unique design. We take everything we learned in the Discovery Phase and get to work developing a mood board and direction for your space. Then we focus in on all the details (and there are usually ALOT!) We try to make every single decision for you. For construction, we're talking paint colors, grout colors, tile choices and lay pattern, cabinet layout, wood stains, etc. Or in the case of a decorative package, this would be more like sourcing specific furniture, rugs (and determining the appropriate size!), lamps, and pillows and deciding the most effective layout for your room. During all that, we're usually pretty quiet from your viewpoint, unless we have specific questions.

The end of the Design Phase is the fun part for you - we set up a Design Proposal meeting where we present everything we've been working on and bring samples for you to see and touch. You get the first glimpse into what your future kitchen/bathroom/living space might look like, and let me tell you, it is so fun! Seeing clients light up at the possibilities is one of the greatest joys of this work.

But don't worry - we're also getting feedback during this meeting. We try not to dictate design, but rather suggest because in the end, this is your space, your home, your story and it HAS to work for you. So, then there's usually a few edits before we officially complete the design phase and hand it off to you.

Implementation Phase

At this point in time, we do not coordinate construction. We have contractors we recommend and are happy to work closely with whomever you hire, but in the end, it is your responsibility to hire the labor. We will meet with you and the contractor for bids and part of our package is to do frequent site visits during construction and be available for troubleshooting as things come up. We don't abandon you just because the design phase is complete because good design doesn't come to fruition without intentionality and attention to detail throughout the entire process.

(Want to know a secret? We're working on creating a construction arm of the business, so hopefully in the near future, we can be a one-stop shop!!! Stay tuned.)

For decor work, you are in charge of ordering everything (unless it is a custom piece), and then you can use the layouts we provide to place things once they arrive. We're there to guide and coach you along the way, and just like in construction, to troubleshoot, as needed. We've found that we can offer lower design fees this way and clients are often happy to do the leg work with appropriate direction, resources, and guidance. (However, if that still sounds stressful, we do have Installation Packages where you can get that "HGTV Reveal" moment - just ask us!)

The process looks a bit different for every designer out there, so we hope this gives good insight into the way we work. Comment below with any other questions you might have about the design process.

And if you're interested in working with us, reach out!

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