For some reason, actresses can become “Designers" on widely-watched TV shows because they can sew curtains. OK, I guess? On the other hand, this week, highly professional representatives of the Interior Design industry in Illinois are spending time talking to legislators in Springfield about new legislation. New regulations would separate and license qualified Interior Designers to give them more autonomy plus the ability to complete and manage their own projects. IIDC (Illinois Interior Design Coalition) is working towards true professionalism in my industry.
Just because the Internet and HGTV/ DIY television are giving out all sorts of free advice and guidance, it doesn't mean that what they "teach" you about remodeling and design makes you qualified to handle your own project, and certainly not anyone else's. Know what? It’s lots harder than TV tells you it is.
Nowadays, we can find shiny magazines (too many to enumerate) in Starbucks and all kinds of showrooms (usually free), with “articles” about design. They are published for those who pay hefty (in my purview) dollars for ads in those very same issues. Just because it’s in a magazine, it’s not necessarily good design, and not always something to emulate. Seriously, do you want to look like all the celebrities in "OK"? These mags are not Architectural Digest, Elle Décor or House Beautiful. Some of these “advertising rags" –as they were once called--publish admirable interiors, but the subjects are not chosen that way.
Web sites offer advice on doing your own remodeling and design/decorating. There are also (seemingly) endless numbers web sites for buying the furniture, accessories and whatever you might need for your projects. Some wholesale of vendors have sites where they will sell to anyone, but NOT at “net” cost without proper credentials. Please remember that you should get what you pay for and often not more.
I was recently in conversation with an expert in a specialized field of construction. She was telling me how much more difficult it is to communicate directly with the consumers when they come to buy from her directly . It's partly because shoppers don’t know the terms (“lingo”, perhaps) or have an understanding of the specification and construction process. She was very direct in telling me that the hardest part of those interactions and meetings (as it were) is that these poorly-educated buyers interrupt and talk over her as if they know as much as or more than she does about her specialty! It makes selling and completing the job difficult and lots more time-consuming. DUH.
Honor your limitations. Design and construction snafus can be incredibly expensive mistakes. Get help when you need it. Look for a real professional.
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