What is an Interior Designer?

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period oak flooringcontemporary bedroom design

So what is an interior designer? In this blog we summarise how an interior designer works, drawing on our experience from being in practice for the past 14 years.

a Bath interior designer designed and installed this boutique bedroom

Anyone looking for professional help with a home renovation or refurbishment will use an interior designer. Taking our clients as examples, they want to understand the best use of space; they need help to choose suitable furnishings and fittings; they need guidance with colours and finishes. Often, they need help to carry out the work too. Interior designers help with all these things, and we provide more detail in interior design services page.

Home Renovation Budget and fees

Budget is clearly a consideration, and there is a level below which it is not cost-effective to engage an interior designer. For higher value home renovations, discerning clients acknowledge the value that an interior designer brings;  to create something special, while saving time and money.

What costs are we talking about? Well, for guidance, we are happy to publish our own interior design fees. We are also happy to share actual costs from past home renovations. However, you should remember that an interior designer will command trade discounts and negotiate good deals, and this in itself often pays for their fee. Recently we were able to save our clients £17 000 through experience and  negotation with contractors.

inside a glass extension

Typical home design projects

All of our clients required a level of assistance in refurbishing their homes. Some only had a single room to renovate – a space that had annoyed them for years and that needed doing up. Others wanted to refurbish their whole house. This included remodelling, building an extension or converting a basement. Our clients build up, down, left, right, and rearwards. Occasionally they purchase a plot and build from new.

Edwardian terrace extension with kitchen diner

What can an Interior Designer do for you?

First, let’s dispel any misunderstandings about interior designers; it’s not all about frilly cuffs and bottomless budgets. Equally, it is not about doing up properties on the cheap using offcuts from grandad’s trousers. TV programmes can be a bit misleading!

roman blinds and dress curtains

There are various flavours of interior designer. Taking our example, we offer a full service from concept to completion. Our creative designs show what is possible; our project management makes it happen. Other interior designers may only offer decorative advice, so clients need to choose the right type of service.


In more detail, we orchestrate everything required to renovate a whole property, build an extension, construct a new house, or refurbish a single room. We take the brief, produce the designs, write the specification, carry out competitive tenders, oversee the work and deliver the finished renovation. Where required, we submit planning applications and engage party wall surveyors and conservation officers too.


Moving to Bath – interior design for your new home

An interior designer can be a great contact for people moving to a new area. Clients moving to Bath, for example, often have a new job to prepare for and children to settle in. They need help to renovate their new home and are pleased to find an interior designer to manage the whole process for them from design to delivery.

You can read a testimonial from a client living in London, who was moving to Bath. Unfamiliar with the city, its builders and trades, he wanted to know who would be reliable; who would deliver a high quality service; who would provide value for money. From our experience of engaging builders, trades, architects, structural engineers and suppliers in the area, we knew who to use. We invited him to our own home, to meet with us without commitment, and to introduce him to one of our regular contractors. This is all about building trust and raising confidence.

circus bath

Bath Residents – interior design for your current home

Bath residents often want a new look for their home; to extend a property, refresh a tired interior, or renovate a kitchen or bathroom. Bath is a highly desirable place to live;  people tend to stay and fund home improvements rather than move and pay the associated fees. An interior designer can really help. Recently, we were asked to carry out a comparison between the price of renovation and the price of moving; our client then judged that it was right to stay in Bath, and so we began a refurbishment which transformed his home and the way he now enjoys his life. We’ve provided a separate page in our portfolio looking at this particular Victorian house renovation .

striped bedroom carpet in one of our bedrooms

If you are thinking of using an interior designer, find one who offers a free initial consultation so you can see whether the engagement will work. Whilst you may think that an interior designer would be beyond your budget, remember that they can save you money by avoiding mistakes, negotiating prices with suppliers, and passing on trade discounts. They also save you time and effort and produce a stylish design that will stand the test of time. If you are still asking “what is an interior designer?”, we invite you to find out more on our page of interior design services.

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