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Download "Designing Your Space" to learn more about hiring and working with an interior designer.

PART ONE   |   PART TWO



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Interior Design Basics

Interior design concerns itself with more than just the visual or ambient enhancement of an interior space, it seeks to optimize and harmonize the uses to which the interior environment will be put.

Many factors come into play in formulating the design solution. There is the space itself--its dimensions and construction--with its potential and its limitations. There is how the space will be used--for work or leisure, entertainment or worship, healing or learning. There is the meaning of the space, what it signifies--be it power, authority, security, wisdom, achievement, playfulness or serenity. There are practical considerations, like ease of access, amount of light, acoustics, seating and places to store or set things down. There are health and safety considerations, attention to special needs and more.

For more information, see the definition of interior design developed by the National Council for Interior Design Qualification.

Design Specialties
Designers often specialize in one or more specific types of interior design.  Some designers specialize in only residential or commercial (or, contract) projects, but many designers do both residential and commercial projects of various kinds.

Approaches
Conversely, many designers approach projects from different perspectives.  These approaches to design cut across specialties.

©2010 American Society of Interior Designers