Do I have to go to school to become an Interior Designer?


If you have been contemplating to become an Interior designer, it’s quite possible that you must have asked this question to yourself, may be more than once. Not all successful businessmen go to school to become one, hence you may question – Can’t I be a successful Interior designer without having to attend a formal school or training? In the same breath, also consider getting a haircut from a person who has just acquired a brand new pair of scissors and thinks that he is good at using them on hair. Would you allow a similar amateur to touch your precious house? Thus, the debate is simple.
On a more serious note, if you have that grand flair for designing, a discerning flight of imagination and the aptitude to match with it to turn them into functional spaces, may be you can just also wing your dream of becoming an Interior designer. If you are able to evoke awe among people with your work and designing spaces comes to you with ease, project after project, then may be you have a natural talent. And by any chance, if you are not a genius, you might have discovered it by this time. But in all possibilities one of these days you might be required to present your certificate or license.
What will you gain by attending the Interior Designing school?
More than obvious gain would be that you will have a degree or a certificate, which will give you the onus of being a professional Interior designer. Moreover if you decide to go international, then you will be on way to write the exams to secure the license to practice your skills almost anywhere in the world.
Some of us can better assess our aptitude only when we put them to test. If you have been designing your friend’s homes and offices and they seem to like it, get enrolled for a formal training. Chances are that you will learn more about the subject and you will have rock-solid evidence of your talent. Else you would discover that you need to learn a bit more about the structures, lighting, reading blueprints, fixtures, coordinating fabrics, drapery patterns et al.
Formal training has organized curriculum and specialized training by experts in the field. Though you find yourself doing fairly well as a designer, you would discover your strengths as a designer and can choose your field of expertise within Interior designing. From being jack of all, you can go on to acquire expertise in lighting, fabrics or space planning. In all, whatever reason that you would deem good enough to be wanting to attend the formal schooling for Interior designing, you are bound to broaden your horizons in terms of learning the most updated methods, current trends and newest skills.
Career Opportunities with INTERIOR DESIGNING
In past few years, more and more corporate and business oriented people are calling for specialized services offered by interior designers. As a result interior designers are in great demand throughout the world these days. This has opened doors to many opportunities for the designers. The spectrum of jobs in interior designing is indeed wide, as space management and customized beautification of the space is desirable for across the board living spaces, be it residential or commercial or public in nature. The nature of interior designing services needed is also distinguished from one space to another, which adds to the number of openings for an interior designer. Interior designing is certainly not limited to home décor and residential spaces anymore. Corporate houses and other enterprises are opting to hire professional interior designers for revamping their offices.
Speaking of openings and job prospects for interior designers, the most common and preferred employers for fresher are contactors and architectural firms. Interior designers can work for them and get valuable experience. Designers can also choose to work with established designer firms. An experienced designer can move into the teaching, as he/she has been there and done that. Though freelance interior designers enjoy advantages of independent projects and flexible working hours, they need to network aggressively to garner recognition and bag assignments consistently hence.
Thematic designing is a very popular branch of interior designing nowadays. For example, the designing demands of a museum or an art gallery are very different from that of a lavish restaurant or mid-scale hotel. Clients with such specialized well-defined needs generally prefer a theme-specialist interior designer and pay handsomely too. Designers with environmental expertise have an evergreen career in the health care and hospitality sectors. Interior designers are also required for retail outlets designing. Not to mention, large-scale media-based designing, such as designing a film shooting set, stage ambiance or newsroom etc. cannot be accomplished without a team of professional interior designers.
All these opportunities and more make interior designing a very lucrative career. In addition, the salaries in this field are quite good. They are paid in lakhs of Rupees (Thousands of dollars, internationally speaking) As the level of experience increases, so does the paycheck.
Freelance as an Interior Designer
Building a career in interior design is certainly not a cakewalk. An interior designer literally does a tight rope walk act as he/ she handles multiple tools, aspects, constraints and expectations to harness the vast expanse of imaginative possibilities.  An interior designer uses fabrics and textures in harmony with architectural aspects, including constructional details of the building, electrical setup in the designing space, safety measures and other various restraining parameters. On the top of it all, the entire job must fit in the client’s budget and suit his/ her taste. Hence, a career in interior designing requires an impeccable ability to plan and manage multitude of pertinent factors, in company with exclusive sense of creativity.
One can go to a school or college for proper training in interior designing. A degree course is more beneficial, as it proves advantageous in the long run over short-term courses. Students go through internships that give them a practical experience of the field.  After graduating it is advised that one should work for some established design company or under some other experienced interior designer to gain experience and exposure. Working thus helps develop valuable business skills and meet esteemed contacts within the design industry. Gradually, one can handle individual assignments and take charge of the entire designing project. One can instead choose to still work for other major design firms, with a huge client base, to stay in touch with large-scale projects.


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