June 15, 2012

an E-Decorating experience
One of the amazing things about the internet is how its made our world so much smaller, the instant connections and communication has opened up so many opportunities, like Virtual Interior Design.
 Christine, a super talented Interior Designer in NYC helped me decorate a room in my house
and all this was done via the Internet!





I was lucky to meet Christine online so was thrilled to have her help me out.
The plan was to re-arrange our formal living room which wasn't being utilised and turn it into a fun hangout room for the whole family.
Storage was so important as I was also moving all my books, crafty papers plus a workspace
and trying to figure out a layout was doing my head in - I was stuck!
The room has a fireplace, kooky small windows and a large french door leading to a porch.  I knew I wanted a whole wall full of books ( I have a lot of books...) so it was SO great to have Christine there (well,  over there in NYC) - such a huge help.
Our budget was very small but Christine offered SO many great ideas, options and advice.   We emailed often and she really understood what we needed!   The final presentation was a 10 page document.  We've bought most things but I still need to add a few more touches, art work needs to be put up and i will reveal our changes soon (promise)...you can see Christine's inspiration for the room below.


For those new to E-Decorating, I asked Christine to explain how her online decorating services work.
My online decorating service is an easy three step process that's fun and easy to implement. 
I will be personally working with you one on one to create a space that you want to live in. 
It's the like having an onsite interior designer but  instead we will communicate via email, phone and skype. 
You can choose from different services that I offer, for example a full room service like a living room or home office where I come up with the concept for the space, the floor plan, and make furniture, color, fabric, and accessories suggestions based on your space criteria, and how you want to feel in the space.
Or you can choose a specific service like window treatments or lighting where I will choose the best window treatment or lighting option that best fits your space and what you are trying to achieve.  

After choosing and purchasing the design service, you need to fill out a comprehensive design profile questionnaire where you will tell me about your space, let me know how you live in the space, how you want to feel in it, and your design style. You will need to send me requested snapshots of your space, measurements and drawings of  your floor plan and elevation, inspirational tear sheets, or your pinterest moodboard.  I will provide you with advice on how to take pictures,  how to measure your room, how to catalog heirlooms and treasures you would like to keep
 When I receive all your information, including pictures, tearsheet, drawings and design profile questionnaire, I will schedule a Skype talk to review your profile and pin down your priorities via phone or Skype.  
 After our conversation, I will start to work on your space.  Then, in 4-6 weeks you will receive a personalized decor package especially designed for you and your space complete with floor plan and elevation for furniture placement, color suggestions, furniture suggestions, fabric and accessories, shopping guide and a to do list - either delivered to your doorstep, or to your inbox.  After receiving the design package there is an unlimited email communication for 14 days, along with two 30 min. skype conversations to go over your design package and any other questions you might have

Is this process suitable for anyone?
Yes, the online decorating service is suitable for anyone -  first time homeowners, entrepreneurs working from home,  singles or couples moving into their first apartment - who is happy doing some of the legwork themselves, like measuring and sketching out the floor plan, taking pictures of the space, cataloging what they want to keep and (this is the fun part) who will enjoy being their own decorator and decorate and their own pace.  I will give  you guidance, suggestions, and homework to do throughout the projects, you get to do the purchasing and installations at your own pace.  
An example would be if you have a sofa that you are keeping  that needs to be reupholstered, I would select the fabric and send you the fabric sample, give you guidance on buying the fabric and questions to ask the upholsterer, and you would be responsible for purchasing the fabric, and finding an upholsterer of your choice. 
If you are a DIY, you will be a perfect fit, because this process is very hands on.   Also if you want to keep the design cost down, online decorating is considerable less than having an on-site designer, and you can still benefit from my design experience and expertise.  

If someone is like me who had never worked with an Interior Designer before, what can they expect? 
A lot of people think that interior designers only choose colors and fabrics, this is simply not true.  Choosing colors and fabrics is part of the process but we also take into consideration how you live in the space, and devise a plan around this.  When working with an interior designer, you can expect us to give your home continuity, function, and beauty.  We can save you money by eliminating decorating mistakes.  
To ensure that the interior designer give you the best service the owner also needs to be prepared with some information, like deciding on budget, know what colors they like or dislike, have pictures from magazine or online to  show what they like or dislike.  The more information you can give the designer the better.  Communication is key between you and the designer to develop a great space.  On the other hand, the designer should listen to your needs, and ask you questions that you have not thought of, and give you fresh perspective of your space, and how to make the best use of it.   
As an interior designer we are here to help you  make the best use of your space that speaks to you, that is comfortable, and makes you happy.  

Again, for people like me who adore many Decor Styles, how can you focus on a paticular style or does functionality in the room override everything?
For a beautifully decorated space, it does not only need to function well, but it also need to create a mood and feeling of the family or the person that lives in in the space.  For a person that likes many decor style it is totally fine to mix decor styles, it's interesting and it shows the owner's character.  A lot of people think that they can only have one decor style in a space or a house but this is not true.  We can mix old with new, modern with traditional, and it will work well.
We don't have to sacrifice style to satisfy the function of the space.  Functionality of a space does not depend on the decor style, it is more about choosing the right furniture that is suitable, proportioned, that fits the space and on the  proper arrangement and flow of furniture, taking into account the traffic patterns in the room and use of space.
 An example of mixing decor style could be a chesterfield sofa, mixed in with mid-century modern side chairs, and a contemporary lucite coffee to create a fun and elegant space.  As long as the furniture is suitable  and well proportioned in the space and not obstructing the traffic pattern it's good.  

Why did you want to be an Interior Designer? 
It all started in my childhood bedroom, when my family and I moved into our new house.
It had walnut paneling on all four walls, drab yellow drapery and some really bad furniture.  I don't even think you can imagine how bad it was! I was seriously traumatized by my ugly bedroom.
So I became an advocate for good design, because I don't want anyone to suffer like I did.  I want people to love their space in a way I never could, and I understand how important it is to live in a space that can transform you. 
I believe that good interior design is important, because it's not just about creating beautiful spaces, but about creating harmony, transforming one's lifestyle, and being happy and productive.  
With the online service being more affordable it allows me to reach more people and help them lead a happy and more productive life by creating a space that they want to live and be comfortable in.  
I do still offer traditional face to face interior design in NYC area.  

To contact Christine head on over to her Blog and Facebook page!
Thanks Christine!!

5 comments:

  1. Love the floorplan and the suggestions for furniture. I am sure the room will look stunning when finished:)

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  2. Thanks Julie-Ann
    cant wait to show you all!

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  3. Sounds like a great experience! I have been thinking about e-design but have too much on my plate right now. I'm happy to see that you had a nice experience and got what you wanted out of it!

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  4. Wow! How could I not know that such a thing existed? When I'm ready, I will definitely look into an e-decorator.

    Andrea
    (BYW2.0)

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  5. I love this post! I offer e-decoration services for kids rooms over in the UK where its a relatively new concept. People are very surprised how well a distance design can work - but what Christine says is so true, it all depends on great communication between the interior designer and the client. I'm really pleased you've found working with an e-decorator such a positive experience too!
    x Ursula (BYW)
    PS - love how varied your blog is!

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Thanks for stopping by and taking time to comment!! i really appreciate it!
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