Where Do You Start?

When I am working with my clients on renovation projects or building a new house, I am often asked where do we start?

On my Blog this week we will discuss the design process and more specifically where is the starting point for putting together a design scheme.

The first stage in the process is to decide on the look and feel you want to achieve in your room/s. If you would like some suggestions on how to decide on your look and feel, check out this Blog – You Need A Plan.

Once you have clarified your design direction, you need to select an anchor point to start your scheme from. This may be a piece of art that you love, a favourite colour, a fantastic piece of furniture or a favourite accessory.

The starting order is the opposite of painting a room, where you start working from the ceiling down. When putting together a design scheme I nearly always start with making flooring decisions first; timber, carpet, tiles and working up from there.

The flooring choices need to be based on practical considerations such as durability, cosiness, temperature, cost, allergies, children and pets. The colour choices available are more limited in the range of flooring available and the flooring creates an anchor to base the rest of your scheme on.

Once you have decided on the combination of flooring finishes, the colour choice is the next critical step, as it will set the tone for the whole interior.  Are there any existing colours are there that you need to work with?

Once you have the floor colours and finishes decided, the next step is to work on your fabrics, both for window treatments and upholstered furniture. While there are many different fabrics available on the market, when you narrow it down to the price point you are working in, the type of fabric and the pattern and finish; your choices are much smaller than paint colours for example.

If you are using wallpaper now is the time to make your selections and to work them in with your fabric choices.

Once you have decided on your fabrics and they are all working together and working well with the floor, you need to decide on hard surface finishes and colours, such as benchtops or non-upholstered furniture.

The final decisions to be made are the paint colours. The paint colours available on the market are literally endless. You can even take a favourite colour on a piece of fabric, wallpaper or piece of art and ask the paint colour to match it for you. You have so much flexibility with paint selections, which is the main reason for leaving this till last.