There is often much confusion between the services of an interior decorator and an interior designer. However, the two professions are vastly different and require significantly different amounts of training and qualifications to get the correct experiences and ways of thinking.
Interior design understands the science of behaviours to help buildings have functional spaces. This can include the tiny details of the shapes of walls, the floors and the different elements that lend to the flow of a room. Good interior designs seek to reduce stress and promote productivity in a commercial setting. A professional interior designer needs knowledge of architecture and will often work with architects to design interior spaces.
Interior designers use spatial planning to help design and renovate spaces, this includes drawing up floor plans to finer decorative details. Their function is not just to design a space in which to exist, but to enhance the productivity of the room and emphasise its purpose.
An interior decorator is different to a designer in that they produce the tangible elements of a room. Decorators are skilled at transforming a room into a visually appealing state. This can include the renovation and implementation of walls for physical change but also the paint for cosmetic value. Commercial decorators can add value and style to space after a designer has created the physical forms.
Schooling is not required to practice professional decorating, however, there are several courses and classes available to help improve existing skills, these skills are often amplified through employment, apprenticeship, and practice with commercial firms. The lack of qualifications required is primarily down to a decorator’s role not impacting the legislation of health and safety, so there are fewer regulations to consider. However, there is a considerable amount of qualifications and degrees available to those pursuing a decorating career path, and a commercial decorator trained in health and safety regulations and legislation can make themselves a very appealing candidate to a prospective client.
Should I Hire a Designer or a Decorator?
Who you hire depends on your needs. Structural changes and renovations would require an interior designer due to their knowledge of architecture and the science of how a room works best for the people using it. However, if you do not need to change the foundations of your space and only the surface cosmetic elements, then a decorator would better fulfil your needs.