Imagine yourself in a finished space that looks amazing, works well and feels like you…a home that is the envy of your family and friends, the perfect place to host lively holiday dinners, or to cuddle up for a quiet night in.
Imagine the advantage of having 20 years of professional design and decorating experience behind you, giving you the confidence to put a room together, knowing that your ideas have been vetted by a seasoned expert.
When you schedule a Design Discovery Session we are at your service, providing the experience you need to feel confident in your home design decisions.
We meet with you in your home for a fast-paced 2-hour strategy meeting, where we’ll take the time to get to know you better so we can provide you targeted advice that speaks to your specific goals and lifestyle. We act as a sounding board for your ideas and provide advice on anything design-related from paint colours to furniture layout and beyond.
Following our meeting we provide you a written report capturing the recommendations that resulted from our discussion. For the DIY client this acts as a roadmap for you to follow as you work on your project. For the person who needs more help, this acts as a detailed scope of work for your project.
Like any exercise – the more you put into it, the more you get out of it. Your Design Discovery Session is no different. This initial meeting sets the tone for your project. Being prepared will ensure that our meeting is both fun and productive.
Below we’re outlining 7 things you can do to prepare for this important first step in your home renovation, design, or decorating project…
1. Know Your Goals
Do you want to make this house your family’s dream home for the next 20 years or are you fixing the place up to sell next year?
Knowing your goals is critical to getting the advice that you need. If you are fixing up a place up for a quick sale, we might suggest generic, inexpensive, cost effective solutions. Whereas if you are designing a dream home that your family will enjoy for a number of years, we will suggest more upscale customized solutions with longevity to stand the test of time.
2. Determine Your Budget
Knowing how much money you have to spend or what you are comfortable spending is a key piece of information for someone who will be guiding you through this process.
You should also consider what you will do if your budget falls short of what may be required to complete the project. Are you willing to compromise on the overall design or would you prefer to do things in stages?
A professional can provide feedback on whether your budget is reasonable and advise you on how best to proceed.
3. Consider How You Live in the Space
Have you heard the saying “Form follows function?” All that means is how you use a space will affect its design.
Your living room will be furnished and laid out quite differently if it is a formal reception room vs. the place where your family gathers to watch TV together.
4. Be Upfront and Specific about Your Needs
If you need carpets that hide the dirt because your dog sheds and the cleaning lady only comes twice a month we need to know that; if you have trouble reaching the toilet paper holder in its current location we need to know that too.
There is no judgement here and the more we know about your personal habits the better we are able to set you up to enjoy your home to the fullest.
5. Have All Materials Present for Consideration
We come to the Design Discovery Session prepared with our years of professional experience, a fresh set of eyes, a tape measure, and paint samples.
If there are specific things that you want us to take into account when providing you advice, we need those materials or items on-site for consideration.
If you want our opinion about whether your great aunt’s antique chair will work in your bedroom we need to see it, preferably in person.
6. Explore Your Likes and Dislikes
A picture really is worth 1000 words, which is why we ask you to create a Houzz ideabook or a Pinterest board where you compile half a dozen images of rooms that you love. This exercise gives you an opportunity to think about what you like and don’t like without worrying about how to identify your “style” in words.
We look through these images with you to clarify what appeals to you about each space. Typically a clear pattern emerges that helps us define your preferences.
7. Determine the Decision Makers
If you have a partner or a family member who is invested in the outcome of your project, they should be as involved as possible in the process.
They should collaborate in the pre-work listed above, whether it is weighing in on the budget or compiling images to show their preferences. At the very least, we insist that all decision makers participate in the presentation meeting where major decisions will be made.
Bonus Tip: Prepare to Be Distraction-Free
Don’t get us wrong…we love kids, however we will be able to make the most of our meeting together if you are focused and free of distractions.
We ask you to think of this meeting like a trip to the spa…it is a lot less relaxing if your 4 year-old is with you or your phone keeps ringing. Don’t you think? 🙂
Thanks for taking the time to read through our tips. If you take them to heart you will be assured of a rewarding Design Discovery Session that is well worth your investment. We look forward to helping you create the home of your dreams.
Have any questions about the design process? Reach out to us or leave a comment below, and we’d be happy to share more.
Until next time,