Good Design: It's Not Just For “The 1%”

Good Design: It's Not Just For “The 1%”

Occupy Wall Street started on  September 17th and Occupy Chicago began a week later on September 24th – today is day 73.

This Movement touches and protests many political and social issues and positions from the banking bailout fiasco and the continuing mortgage chaos to free speech, environmental responsibility and gay rights.   But the core of the movement began with the inequality between the wealthiest 1% and the other 99%.  This inequality gets me in the gut for so many reasons-- economic, social, political and (of course) philosophical.   Design Sense is not a blog based on socio-political topics, so I won’t expound on my liberal/bred in Hyde Park leanings.  But there is a post that begs to be written for today!

It’s pretty obvious that for “the 1%” all aspects of Professional Interior Design can be available.  If the sky is the limit, the challenge is what to do among many choices.  The surprise might be that good Design is available not just to the 1% or 10%, but to many more…if approached properly and creatively.

How?  First, a Designer can (read: “should”) be able to work the cost of his/her services into the total that you spend.  By that I mean that if you work with a Designer, when you buy products, it makes sense to confirm that what you spend on merchandise plus the fees add up to what you would pay on your own (retail).  The costlier the products, the more you can save.  If you want to do your own shopping, a Designer can be the observer and the counsel that will keep you from making mistakes.  Those errors are sometimes color choices, materials, “bang for your buck” or, unfortunately, scale and proportion.  A Designer must make sure that everything fits properly in the space, looks proportioned and won’t fall apart.  Paint and painting isn’t free, but it’s paint.  “Ugly” is in the eye of the beholder, but if your furniture layout doesn't work out or the quality of what you buy is disappointing, it can be a huge headache for a long time.   Besides walls and furniture (and windows, lighting, accessories), advice on tile and flooring or bath/ kitchen remodeling might be truly helpful.

A  Designer (like me) could enjoy working with a tight(er) budget while still pulling together a personal and unique space.  There are so many ways to buy within a budget by redoing what’s already there (upholstery, refinishing) or shopping sales, showroom samples, vintage stores and DIY.

It might seem that designing for the 1% would be fun and creative.   It IS, but working with everyone else is fun as well, and often the work is more creative and more fulfilling, too.


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