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Decorating vs. Interior Design

We often get asked the question, “What is the difference between interior decorating and interior design?”

We recently completed two projects that although very similar in some regards, they were very different in their mission and execution. We are going to introduce two of our recent Miami Design projects to help explain the differences (and similarities) between a decorative project and an interior design project.

This week, we are going to cover the first step that is required for both kind of project – the concept presentation. The below example is from our decorative project, Elegant Escape, in Aventura, FL to use as an example.

First, we establish the overall mood and materiality for the home:

Decorating vs. Interior Design


Decorating vs. Interior Design


Then we create boards reflecting what the interior mood will look like. The photos are selected by the designers in line with their vision that is created from the initial conversation with the client:

Interior_Design_and_Decorating Interior_Design_and_Decorating Interior_Design_and_Decorating


Next step is to create a floor plan of the space to reflect exact measurements and space planning:



After the layout is finalized, we create renderings, sketching and drawings of what each individual room will look like:

Interior_Design_and_Decorating Interior_Design_and_Decorating Interior_Design_and_Decorating Interior_Design_and_Decorating


Interior Design Next Steps:

After the concept presentation is reviewed with the client, for interior design projects, we move forward with a design development presentation, followed by a furniture and lighting presentation, and then an accessory selection presentation. Meanwhile, the designer is working on and producing construction documents that are reviewed by the city as well as an architect to ensure all plans adhere to state laws and requirements. After all furniture items have been approved, purchased and delivered to a warehouse, we begin the construction phase. This is where a general contractor supervises gutting out the old homes (always a fun part!), demolishing walls, adding levels and floors, fixing electrical and lighting plans through-out the house, laying new flooring, applying fresh paint, configuring an A/V plan, fixing plumbing etc along with the interior designers supervision. After the construction is complete (months later), we move in furniture, perfect the layout and design, add accessories and walk the client through their reveal. Through out the entire process, furniture selection and placement is just a small piece of the puzzle.

Interior Decorating Next Steps: 

For interior decorating jobs, after the concept presentation is reviewed with the client, we move forward with a furniture, lighting and accessory presentation. After all items have been approved, purchased and delivered (to either the home or warehouse, depending on the size of the project) we then move in and arrange all furniture. At the same time, we are coordinating with any required carpenters, painters, electricians, handymen etc. to complete their installations. Once the apartment is ready for its reveal, we walk the client through with an explanation of the design.

STAY TUNED for more detailed posts on these next steps for both of these projects as we guide you through the design process!!

Guest Blogger

We pride ourselves in surpassing the focus of design by delivering luxurious and innovative homes that directly correlate to our client’s needs.

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