How to design

Interior design concept

Many customers are skeptical about creating an interior design concept, considering this stage ephemeral and unnecessary. In fact, this is the basis, without which it is impossible to create a harmonious interior. This is not a set of ready-made ideas and solutions, and the image of the future interior, as you see it.

Feelings and associations are important here. Probably you will not find anything similar in ready-made designer portfolios, and then you have to turn to art. If you have favorite works, trends or eras – this can be a great basis for developing a concept in a modern interpretation. It is always very interesting to work with such references – here the task is not only to show the special taste of the customer, but also to adapt it to modern needs.

The design concept – what is it?

It conveys the atmosphere and mood that needs to be created in the interior. It is impossible to describe in terms, everything is built on personal communication with the customer and the identification of his true desires.

The very concept of the concept – a very broad, it includes a set of ideas and preferences, which may not even realize it. The designer will help to formulate these thoughts and transform them into clear directions, which later will turn into specific tasks.

Documentarily, this part of the design project is a description of the future interior on 1-2 sheets, with vivid images that reflect the emotional component of the atmosphere of the house.

Why do you need a concept?

It outlines the circle of your preferences and creates the necessary framework in which the designer will work.

There is a myth that that is what designers are for – to implement absolutely all ideas, and the result must be flawless, fully meeting your expectations.

In practice, everything is different – to create a good interior design you need a framework, without it even the most interesting ideas will be blurred, it will be impossible to personalize them. This framework and are the outlines of the concept – when the creative space is defined, within it you can embody different ideas, and all of them will be in harmony with each other.

The concept solves several problems at once:

  • You yourself gain a clear understanding of what the ideal house should be like. Until there is no central line of work, all the ideas are scattered. And if you try to implement them one by one, the result will be far from what was planned.
  • Having a coordinated line of work ensures that you and your designer understand each other correctly. Such unanimity is necessary to achieve the desired result. For builders, such a mandatory tool is the project – without it, mistakes are inevitable. And the designer needs a concept in order to offer solutions in accordance with your wishes.
  • Provides a harmonious interior forever. Even when the work on the creation and implementation of the design project is completed, you will still have a reference point. It’s much easier to change your surroundings within the concept than to act at random, pursuing only utilitarian goals.

The design process

The concept is developed on the basis of your preferences, wishes, ideas – all this is discussed during the consultation and fixed in the requirements specification.

Working through this information, taking into account current trends and perspectives, our studio specialists create a general concept. This happens without the client’s participation, a whole team works on the content of the concept.

When the concept is ready, its key elements are manifested in the planning solution. Further, at the stage of 3D-visualization and creation of collages, working out of details becomes more and more detailed.

Just at this stage, the choice of materials takes place, architectural solutions are determined in accordance with the budget. By this time, the planning solution and arrangement of furniture in the rooms has already been agreed, but if necessary, you can make adjustments to the 3D visualization.

Important: We start making 3D visualizations only after a general vision of the concept, agreed with the client.

The 3D model of the future apartment is a digital implementation of the concept based on the suggested ideas. Thanks to this you can visualize how the finished apartment will look like. If there are new wishes about the concept, it is advisable to voice them at this stage, so you can make adjustments.

How to design

Stages of concept development

You tell us your wishes and ideas about how you want to see the future interior. This is discussed in person with our experts, who record your ideas for further elaboration. Ideally, if you already have a visual or textual description of the ideas you like, these can be photographs, renderings or articles with illustrations. The final embodiment of the ideas will be different from the given examples, here it is more important to capture the atmosphere and the nature of the setting, so that it corresponds as closely as possible to your ideas of beauty.

This information, obtained in the process of communicating with the client, is entered into the TOR – the main document describing the content of the concept.

The process of development itself occurs in our studio, the client is not directly involved in it. Detailed discussion of the concept, its form and components – this is not the part of the work, in which the client should be involved, because from the outside it can look somewhat “fuzzy” and difficult to understand, as any creative process. We have found by experience that this approach is optimal, since the stage of concept formation requires highly specialized competence and knowledge, which only specialists possess. The customer does not need to immerse himself in this process, he gets an almost finished product which can be evaluated – a planning solution. It is convenient and visual, because a person sees with his own eyes what the approximate result will be. He can express his opinion, influence the final planning decision – all of this is tangible and understandable, allowing you to build a comfortable interaction.

After the planning solution is agreed, we proceed to the creation of 3D-visualization – at this stage, there are specific details that will be transferred to the actual interior. Decisions are also made here about materials, finishes and decorating techniques.

In the design, the composition of the family and the approximate lifestyle of all household members must be taken into account. Therefore we always recommend collecting the wishes of the family in advance, at least in general terms – it helps to make the concept comfortable and aesthetically attractive to all. In the process of work some details may change, add and disappear – but the very fact that you consulted with the family will be very important in assessing the final result.

Style in the interior

It makes a difference the arrangement of furniture and accessories

It’s one thing when all this is distributed tastefully and expresses a certain idea, and it looks quite different if the work was done haphazardly, just to fill the voids. Anything you don’t like should be removed, except, of course, what is dear to the other members of the family.

Spend one or two weekends revising your collections. Sift all the photos, memorabilia, and mementos through the sieve of personal emotion and sentimentality. Set aside the most important things for future use as interior decorations, bringing it a touch of humanity, sincerity.

Postcards and stamps are suitable for decoration, from them you can create a table and wall compositions. As a background for these items is advisable to choose effective colors or textures. A selection of family photos in appropriate beautiful frames looks good. This, one might say, is a small art-historical gallery within the walls of your home.

Use a variety of materials/facilities

Curtains, bedspreads, pillows and tablecloths shape the image no less than wallpaper and furniture. When choosing them you need to take into account every detail: the color scheme, the pattern, the texture – all of it should not be out of your overall style. 

For example, for the safari style the leather and fur things with a pattern reminiscent of the color of animals will be the best fit. But they would be completely illogical for ethnic styles, where you should rather use patterns corresponding to the national motifs of the country which is the leitmotif of the interior.

The choice of color in accordance with the closet

Many interior designers suggest paying attention to your closet. If you are conservative in your clothes, then there is no reason to paint the walls and furniture in bright screaming colors. If, on the other hand, your closets have bright and trendy items of clothing, then the quiet, muted tones of the interior are not quite right for you. Hence the inevitable conclusion: dress your home the way you dress yourself.

Experiment with shapes.

Each style and direction is characterized by some common forms and moments or even used elements.

If we give an example of English style variants – then this element would be carved wood, which dominates the interior (complex shape of wooden furniture legs and exquisite cornices). This style allows for a large library, where books are placed on luxurious wooden shelves.

And for the style of high-tech on the contrary is characterized by a complete absence of everything “superfluous”. Flat planes without additional drawings and reliefs, and combinations based on a difference in materials, rather than on their decor. If you need to place a library in such an interior, it should probably be behind a closed door.

Boldly showcase your hobbies.

If you write music or play sports at home, it is better if your walls have additional soundproofing. Think about your neighbors! If you’re a fashion designer and artist, don’t forget the workshop, and if you’re gathering guests, plan a club-style living room. And if you’re a writer or academic, consider where your home will house a library. Let the people who come to your house guess what you do.

You can use your own work in the decor elements. This can be as a certificate or certificate, as well as paintings, or design crafts on the walls. Create your own world, make it so that you were happy and comfortable in it, and your profession received in this world a certain boost, thanks to properly chosen interior.

Do not be afraid to combine styles.

Believe me, it’s perfectly normal when you like several styles at once. Purism in creating your own interior (also with your own hands) is the hardest way. Relax and let yourself love variety. After all, eclectic looks not only spectacular and daring, but also creates real domestic comfort.

Be original.

As a rule, apartments and houses of extraordinary personalities are remembered for their individuality. They are not necessarily famous or very successful, but they have their own vision of the world, of themselves and of their homes. Note that the search for and expression of their essence through the interior does not mean narcissism. Elementary attention to the conditions in which we spend most of our lives is akin to taking care of our own health. It is as natural as, say, running in the morning and eating healthy food.

Add elements of art to the interior

Art is key to interior design. One of the golden rules of placing art in an interior is restraint. Do not overdo it with an abundance of tapestries, paintings and sculptures, art should be an accent, otherwise you run the risk of turning your house into a junk shop.

Do not be afraid to experiment and mix different styles. In a modern design is perfect for a statuette in the style of primitive art, and in art deco – an ancient sculpture. Try to dilute the interior with interesting and unusual things to make the room look cozier.

In a word, give free rein to your imagination, be honest and get ready to experiment! Then the interior will be authentic and individual, comfortable and stylish, and you will feel here – at home. And that, in the end, is your main goal.

Where to look for inspiration?

This is an important thesis, which in the long run will be a solid foundation for working on projects. Your subconscious mind is a “database” that is constantly being replenished, and it’s up to you to decide what it is. 

It is important to look as much as possible: visit exhibitions, bookmark the sites you like.

That is why it is important to look as much as possible: go to exhibitions, bookmark the sites you like. The easiest way to do this is with Pinterest: here you can create themed boards. Maybe an idea you like won’t come in handy now, but in the future it can play a key role in shaping your concept.

What should you focus on?

The best. It just so happens that most of the advanced designers work abroad, and the Internet allows you to follow their projects almost immediately. Print media regularly publish interiors worthy of your attention.

Every major publication also has an online version and editorial offices in other countries, such as France, Germany, Spain, Italy – be sure to research those, too. The editorial offices of the same magazine can differ dramatically depending on the country and mentality, and it can be very interesting to notice these differences. 

Everything should be conducive to work.

Create for yourself an environment in which you feel most comfortable to work in. Inspiration can be very capricious: sometimes even a minor annoying factor can scare it away. So keep the number of such factors to a minimum: regularly tidy up the workplace and keep all the necessary items at hand.

Create for yourself an environment in which you feel most comfortable to work.

The time that you choose to work is also important: if possible, it is better to choose when you can not disturb anyone, for example, in the evening.

Don’t forget to switch gears.

There are times when you find yourself up against an invisible wall, which does not allow you to move further. Thoughts do not gather together, and the solutions are not found, in addition, you are constantly distracted by social networks. All this speaks of banal fatigue.

If you believe psychologists, it can be prevented by switching every hour and a half for 15 minutes. Get out of your chair, make yourself some tea, pour some water, or just distract yourself. Try as much as possible to abstract from work and not to think about the tasks you were doing before.

On the weekends do a reset. If you spend all day in front of the computer, the best option would be a walk in the park; if you are engaged in mental activity, sign up for a gym.

Already got it all figured out?

Study history: read the writings of architects, look up biographies of designers. This will allow you to look at current trends on a historical scale, to see the big picture, understanding the nature of the mechanisms that drive our sphere.

Plus, understanding history allows you to predict events and how they affect related fields. Another plus: this way you won’t repeat others’ mistakes. Read more: someone may have already found the right answer to your questions.

Allocate half an hour during the day when you are free to be creative and do what you want to do. Experiment! In this small amount of time you will not only start to develop your key skills, but you can also create a pool of ideas that will sooner or later become part of your new project.

Interior design methodology

Functionally it can be both residential object – apartment, country cottage, mansion, and commercial premises: office, store, restaurant, etc. Despite the difference in volume, complexity and style of interiors you should always stick to common system principles and stages of work. This will help to avoid mistakes and simplify the interaction between the client and the contractor (designer or architect).

In total there are 3 main stages in the creation of interior design, as well as 3 parts of the design.

Stage 1. First of all necessary to collect raw data, based on which will be done design:

Measurement plan. It should contain detailed information with the size of the premises, the size of door and window openings, ceiling height, tied utilities. The quality of the measurement plan depends on the accuracy of the construction of design geometry of the premises and the calculation of material consumption for finishing. As a rule, the original dimensions provided by the customer, but responsible for their work designer or architect perform measurements independently.

Terms of Reference for Design (TOR). A very important document. It contains information about the customer’s wishes and requirements for the future interior: anticipated type and color of materials, design style, necessary furniture and sanitary equipment, etc. Questionnaire-questionnaire for TOR provides the contractor, and the task of the client to fill it. It is desirable to complete the job images with examples of completed interiors to accurately understand the stylistic direction for the design.

The contract for the work. Without a contract to begin the design is highly undesirable. In this case, neither of the parties will be immune from fraud or dishonest attitude towards the work, and it will be difficult to control the process and require each other to fulfill their obligations. The contract should at least prescribe the cost and composition of the work, payment stages, terms of performance and penalties for delayed execution of the order.

Stage 2. Design of interior design.

Part 1 – development of the concept and layout.

One of the most creatively difficult parts of the work, the main task of which is to find the best layout in terms of functionality and usability. The designer must offer options for arrangement of furniture and space zoning. Justify the advantages of one or more options. To build a 3d model of the layout and to offer a sketch solution to the materials.

The result should be agreed with the customer sketches – space planning with arrangement of furniture and equipment, as well as colors and materials. Can be both hand drawn and computer 3d model with a general visualization (preferably) with top views.

Part 2 – detailed visualization of all rooms separately.

At this stage, the most important thing is given to detailing and further development of the interior: adjusted the scale and size of furniture, worked through the geometry of the ceilings, supplemented as engineering items (light, sockets, switches, household appliances), and decorative elements with textiles – art objects (vases, paintings, statues), curtains, pillows, appliances, etc. Adjusts the texture of the finishing materials.

The result – quality visualization, which should accurately show the future interior.

Part 3 – construction drawings.

Now it is necessary to supplement the creative decisions with executive documentation so that the builders-finishers can bring the design to life. Here it is important to understand that the composition of the drawings and the density of their elaboration directly depends on the complexity of the design and the cost of design. Very often, cheap interior design proposals have a very weak technical, executive base. This can lead to mistakes in the course of repair and even a complete halt of the work. So it is better to clarify in advance what exactly the composition of the drawings provide the performer, what he is prepared to take responsibility in case of problems with the drawings and whether he will be able to consult or perform copyright supervision during the repair (usually this option comes with a fee).

In any case, the project must contain at least the following information (drawings):

  1. Construction and finishing plan with information and dimensions of walls and partitions to be erected, marking of doors, designation of wall finishes.
  2. The general design plan with the arrangement of furniture and explication of the premises.
  3. Flooring plan.
  4. Electrical plan with the binding of outlets / switches.
  5. Ceiling plans with lighting.
  6. Plan with the size of the furniture and equipment.
  7. Specification of materials consumption.

In addition can be developed sweep walls, detailing of the original (copyright) interior elements such as fireplace, staircase or built-in closet, as well as the selection of the manufacturer (with the name and part numbers) of all materials, fixtures and decor.

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