Aspiring Interior Designer

Aspiring Interior Designer Q&A

My 13 year old niece, Bella,  dreams of being an interior designer.   Like me, she is spending her middle school years doodling floorplans.   This August, she spent a fun week and a half shadowing me at here at down2earth interior design.  She also spent a lot of time singing Hamilton in the car with me on the way to and from design consultations.

Here are some of her reflections:

What do you think the most challenging thing about being an interior designer is?

The most challenging thing about being an interior designer in my opinion is being able to look through thousands of different paint colors, types of furniture, fabrics, etc, and not getting overwhelmed. It can also be a struggle to stay organized when there are so many files, layouts, and choices.

What inspires you about it?

Interior designing is inspiring to me because I am able to see different personal styles and types of architecture. I love color matching and making mood boards.

Intern Moodboard

What’s one thing you learned about the field you didn’t know before?

One thing that I learned about interior designing is that when you are taking measurements of a room you always measure heights first so you don’t later forget to take them.   Floorplans are aerial but heights are needed for elevation drawings.

Intern Floorplan Sketch

Above: dining room floorplans, to scale, by my niece


What questions do you have about how to follow this career path?

Is it better to be an interior designer in a city or in the suburbs?

Amy’s take:  I love working in both.  In the city permitting or parking can be difficult to manage (at least in Philadelphia) and some of our favorite contractors won’t work down there as a result.  In the suburbs, sometimes distance from our office or from our favorite sources poses geographical challenges.  Other questions to contemplate are what is it like working in residential design vs. working in commercial design, or working for yourself vs. working for a bigger design firm.   All of these factors impact one’s career path.


What qualities do you think it takes to be a good interior designer?

I think that to be a good interior designer you need very good people skills. It is important to have a need to help people and know how to prioritize the client’s needs. You also need to not be afraid to share your opinion.


Check out our previous Q&A for aspiring Interior Designers >

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