VLOG – Interior Designer Vs Interior Decorator

Hey all! In this vlog Im sharing my thoughts about interior designers vs interior decorators, what the differences are and why we all need a better understanding.
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36 thoughts on “VLOG – Interior Designer Vs Interior Decorator”

  1. You want to be an FF&E designer. I worked in the industry for years as an Interior Designer but classed myself more as an Interior Architect. However, there is apparently no such thing! I worked with lots of talented FF&E designers who were fantastic with fabrics, colour, furniture and lighting. Good luck!

  2. I'm so glad I came across your video, I wanted to do an Interior Design course but have no interest in learning how to draw a floorplan or elevations… I'm more on the creative side decorating residential homes. Does anyone know any good online courses for interior decorator?

  3. I finished BA Hons Interior Design last year. It gets really annoying at times when people ask me to design (decorate is what they meant) but can't blame them because even I didn't know see the difference. I went in thinking decoration too. But I am so glad it was so much more. It was overwhelming but absolutely an amazing experience 😍

  4. I'm an incoming eleventh grade student. This past few months I've been really fascinated with decorating. I thought that's what I want to do. However, when I started doing research about the course (universities offering them), the closest thing I can find was Interior Design. I was skeptical about the word 'design' that comes with it. I don't trust my drawing skills to be enough for that field. I have this side of me that loves color palettes and patterns and textures but I'm not the type who loves to draw that much. I've already acknowledged the creative side of me long ago and I want to follow this path but sadly, no formal education (I think) that introduces us to this career is available. A formal education that will nurture and let it bloom.

  5. Hi Sarah! This is a very good informative video, I appreciate your honesty! πŸ™‚ im currently studying a diploma of interior design online in Australia, but i definitely think i underestimated how challenging it would be as well haha! It takes so much discipline and motivation to do the assignments, so yeah, I feel you haha!

  6. πŸ™ŒπŸ½πŸ™ŒπŸ½πŸ™ŒπŸ½πŸ™ŒπŸ½πŸ™ŒπŸ½πŸ™ŒπŸ½πŸ™ŒπŸ½people need to understand that I move walls, I don't pick throw pillows, INTERIOR DESIGN IS A LICENSED PROFESSION like thank you for this video

  7. If you don't try you will never know, you dont like it. Successful people tried many things. Failing in a lot and then succeed in One, Sarah! Anyway, you are Pretty !!!

  8. I am an "interior designer" Dallas, Texas. The states have the same difficulty in understanding the differences. You have done a wonderful job in explaining. Thank you! The average person still doesn't get it. But that's okay. We just keep on explaining and working. And you are right, some are overwhelmed with the technical aspect of design, but do a wonderful job with their clients. For you, I think at some point when you daughter is older, being a decorator will bore you and you will want more control of your projects. I was a stay at home mom of two boys, and a student of interior design at the same time. Totally understand where you are!


  9. Thank you for sharing your story, I can completely relate I started my journey the exact same way. I was a working and started a distance learning course and found I suddenly had no time and was not prepared for all the practical work involved. That was last year but now I'm studying decorating full time but it's not simple as it seems. I love how relatable you are, keep it up.

  10. Finally someone speak up about this. Yes interior design is different from interior decorating/styling. I'm more think of interior design as brother/sister of architechture. They're on more technical side. Interior decorating is more on creative/fun side I think.

  11. Great video Sarah! I am an interior designer living in the US, and I do agree with the confusion of having people think that I am a decorator! I wanted to do interior design because I do have a passion for it, and I love the architectural part of it. A lot of schools and firms started calling it Interior Architecture, as it makes more sense for us because we don't really do the "decor" part that much. I still do pick colors and furniture pieces, but this isn't the focus of an interior designer. Keep up the good work!

  12. So what do you call yourself decorator or stylist? Since you didn't finish school is it difficult to explain to clients…What does your contract look like? I don't feel I need schooling to help someone style or decorate. I'm 40 with a 1 year old and dont have time to attend formal training. I love this vlog.

  13. Hello Sarah,
    I really want to study Interior Decorator, but everytime I search at Google. I can't find anything about it, only Interior Design everywhere. Do you know any schools that has decorator course? Like a undergraduate course. It would be really helpful! Thanks anyway πŸ™‚

  14. Hi Sarah – just wanted to say a BIG thank you for posting this. As a qualified interior designer and having studied almost 6 years+, I get so angry with people who call themselves designers when they are either decorators or stylists. As you mentioned, there is a HUGE difference. Interior designing is so much more technical and in depth than any of the others. I often wanted to quit as it was so complex and working full time too started to take it's toll, but I can say, it is the best thing I have ever done! Once qualified, you are armed with a ton of transferable skills that can take you anywhere! I wish you well in whatever you do Xx

  15. When you understand who you are, what you love to do, and know what your doing, you can get success, by spending time learning the specific craft, investing money into materials and resources you'll need, and getting hands on experience are important for developing a skill set for your appropriate career, no matter it is that your doing.

  16. Hey Sarah – I think you're such an inspiration. I found this video because I wanted to learn more about interior design. I recently had a baby and left my career working in software product development so I felt like "ahh…finally, someone who understands how crazy it is when you have a kid AND you moved on from a job AND you're trying to find your voice and your creative outlet". I've been considering some different careers that make use of my creativity and interior design is one of them. Haven't yet decided if I'll do interior design but watching your video makes me want to tune in more to learn about my strengths and my style and not just go after what everyone else is doing, or what's safe.

  17. Hey. Months later I know so I don't know if you'll see this. I've been wondering recently about retraining to do something hands on & creative after a period of illness. I've done painter/decorator/carpentry/odd jobs before while studying something completely unrelated and quite enjoyed it but felt that I'd like to expand it into something a) with more room for creativity and b) with the chance of being more lucrative. I'm still undecided as to whether I'd prefer to try my hand at interior design or interior decoration, both interest me, but thank you for putting your experience and thoughts on the matter out there.

  18. So interesting… I am an interior designer in the US and trust me, there is just as much confusion here as there is in the UK. The main difference, is the design education gives a designer the tools, not to only draw floorplans, elevations, etc. but a complete understanding of the "space planning" of a building. We plan commercial spaces including restaurants and bars, offices, medical and retail facilities, etc. We don't merely pick out the "decor" including the furniture, accessories, and paint. But we do all of those things as well. We can also design custom millwork and builtins as well as lighting and ceiling designs. SO much to cover, it would be impossible.
    Good luck to you πŸ™‚

  19. Sarah – I cannot tell you how DELIGHTED I am to have found this vlog! I am curently at the beginning of my course (same open learning one as yours), and am struggling to come to terms with what I've actually let myself in for. I think that I will push on with it (for now) but I can totally relate to the misinterpretation of what you thought the course would be about. I wish that I had done the actual degree course when I first left school, as I think that it is a brilliantly comprehensive preparation for becoming an interior 'designer'. However, as a busy mother tentatively exploring a second career, it's becoming apparent that my aspirations lie closer to the styling and lifestyle side of the interiors industry – something that drawing mathematically accurate room plans has brought sharply into focus!! Basically, I'm just so happy that i'm not the only one who has realised this 'after' commiting to 18 months of paying – duh! x

  20. To me, styling and decorating is much the same thing. Well I thought it was. I don't think there needs to be different labels and it could trickle down to the general public as it has in fashion. You could put interior decorator/stylist in your bio. With designer I feel like there is at least a couple of definitions which one is what you mentioned and the other is what I feel I am which is designing furniture, I wouldn't call myself just a furniture designer because it is so much more than just furniture, accessories, lighting, soft furnishings, everything that goes inside that a decorator or stylist would select or the other kind of designer would select to use. I'm not interested in moving people's walls etc. Right now it is only designs on paper as I don't have the funds to have anything produced and still researching where I could get things made. I've done a couple of online learning courses for business administration. I didn't really find it for me and found it didn't really teach me anything as it was so basic and just common sense and most of it was sending me off to do my own research and then answer their questions. I felt like I was wasting my time and being tested and not learning anything from the course and that it was pointless. I feel like why bother doing a course when if in the future I need to know and find something out and I can just look it up by myself anyway. I finished the first course. I didn't really have a choice because it was through a job agency and it was that or look for a job. I don't have a car and at the time my son was in school and I had to walk him there and walk back home and then go pick him up so it suited my lifestyle but it was hell when I had to continue when school holidays started. There was no pause button on the videos and I felt very stressed out because my son was only 5 and is autistic and ADHD but at that time he had been assessed for autism and it had come back negative but another year later he was assessed again at a different hospital with a different team at my request and he was diagnosed. It was stressful having to say to him now I have to study go be by yourself and be quiet and don't make noise and don't come and ask me a single question and don't talk to me otherwise I have to stop the video and start from the very start again and some videos could go for an hour. He wouldn't always remember not to bother me so in the middle of a video I was stressing trying to pay attention to it and remind him to leave me alone and be quiet. I had the noisiest neighbours from the Congo next door and school holidays were the worst. They had like 6 kids who would never go to bed and play outside being noisy after midnight and babies outside screaming and crying. The only time I could get some peace and quiet to do my course was between 1 am and 6 am. Then I had to start certificate 2 and I didn't finish because things had got worse at school. They had excluded my son so he was just going for 2 hours per day. I was volunteering in his class as his support person. Which made sense because otherwise I would have only half an hour at home before I had to walk back to pick him up and then I had to supervise his schooling at home which he didn't want to do and didn't get motivated to get on with easily till 8:30 pm and after 11 pm we would go to bed. I didn't touch my online course and my agency said I had to get an exemption approved which I did so that was the end of that. I am homeschooling him full time now and I am not considering any kind of online course. I'm trying to start up my fashion/interior lines, my magazine, blog, books and work on music and movie scripts. I was looking into some of the ways people make money on blogs and decided that most of it was not for me. I'm trying to promote a vegan lifestyle so some of the ads that people have wouldn't be suitable. I came across websites bloggers can join to put ads on their blogs and in the terms and conditions you can't just remove an ad easily or steer people away from the ad. Also I wouldn't say I'm a hobby blogger. I would say I'm a business with a blog so the way they set their sites up I don't feel like I fit into either of just two categories with no cross over. I wouldn't want my blog to be a hobby anyway. I'd want it to be a business. I've been working on my blog for over a year now and not very successfully. I haven't made a cent. I was thinking that I could set a donation thing up instead of paid ads that I don't approve of and offer advertising for brands that have the same values but right now that is just an idea sitting in my head. I've also been liking the idea of guest bloggers. I wouldn't want to work on a magazine all by myself but have a team of contributors on a bunch of different topics and have that on the blog too. I haven't done a first issue yet because that will all take money which I don't have so right now it is all just the blog https://www.bloglovin.com/blogs/rag-doll-13744543 http://www.facebook.com/RagDollMagazine http://www.pinterest.com/RagDollMag and @RagDollMagBlog @priscillacita which is my luxury fashion line which is pretty much a logo I'm working on, designs on paper and a toile that is a work in progress. I'm going to check out your no bull blog course after this. Would you be interested in guest blogging on my blog?

  21. Totally agree on this 'interior designer' label being put on everything!! Everyone always assumes I want to be an interior designer and yet, I really DON'T exactly for the reasons you didn't want to finish your course – because I really just feel very bored to tears thinking about executing floor planning and moving walls and creating scaled drawings etc. I love the styling and decor side of things and that really falls more into the realms of 'interior decorator' but people hear 'decorator' and assume you mean you paint walls for a living!! Gah. Agree there's a much better understanding and appreciation for the roles of both in the US more than here. Great way to open the dialogue and hell yeah, it's time to start embracing the term 'interior decorator'. Here's to another year of smashing it my dear πŸ˜‰ xx

  22. This is brilliant!! I have literally just handed my dissertation in based on this whole interior decoration v interior design debate. You're so right in what you say about the states, they have a much greater understanding and I believe appriciation for both careers. The confusion is so much over here that I think decorators are totally undermined , like you said you don't want to write in your bio "decorator" . But why not?! Your skills and talents are brilliant and they are what they are, but unfortunately the reason is due to a lack of education and understanding around the subject. So many talented decorators feel the need to either promote themselves wrongly or take up the education like you did when it's kind of unnecessary. Champion the interior decorator I say and celebrate for what it actually is!!! Not many people have the innate qualities it takes to be one. I'm hearin ya' sister!!!

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