Another post inspired initially by a meeting with potential clients-I honestly love my job, and every meeting, every house, gives me tonnes of inspiration not only for my designs, but also for my blog. A very recent meeting with a fellow interior designer, Suzzy Smith, somehow gave me even more confidence to write this post.
So, some of you might think that architects and interior designers do pretty much the same thing. It’s true that in some countries, for example, in the United States, or Poland, qualified architects decide to specialise more in interiors, and in fact do what an interior designer does in the UK. There exist, I’m sure, architects with very keen interests in interiors, who would be probably happy to undertake the job of designing the interior of a house, for example, but I would like to focus on how the job of an architect differs from that of an interior designer.
Let me start by quoting Albert Hadley, “The essence of interior design will always be about ‘people’ and how they live.” The architecture, on the other hand, focuses on ‘buildings’; yes, indeed, people factor is crucial here, but it’s not the essence of this discipline. Although architecture gave birth to interior design, the latter developed in a quite distinctive way, flourishing in the Renaissance period. It might be interesting to know that Interior Design as a commercial enterprise didn’t actually begin until the Industrial Revolution, which allowed for materials and products to be mass-produced (which we can enjoy even more of now:).
Now, coming back to the main distinction between Architecture and Interior Design. Architects normally use walls, floors and ceilings to define the spaces that are put together to make up a building. They are experts at designing from scratch. Interior architects (yes, they do exist as well), focus on taking existing structures and transforming them to suit new functions. Interior designers, like me, usually work with existing spaces, which require minimal physical alterations. The focus of interior designers is to transform the look and feel of a space through the use of colour, light, finishes, furniture, fixtures. You could say that interior designers are a link between interior architects and interior decorators; the latter undertake purely decorative projects.
None of this means architects and interior designers cannot work together. Quite the opposite, if the project is planned carefully, the knowledge and expertise of both coming together, could produce excellent results. I personally enjoy working with Goose Architects, who I highly recommend to everyone who is considering a building design.
Tip: When planning knocking the walls, consider contacting an interior designer, who will be able to handle not only space planning and decorative aspects, but also major structure changes.