Digital Design-How to work remotely with a designer


Across the country, people are spending more time at home than ever before – and many are realizing that their spaces might need a refresh or a total overhaul. Thanks to tech-savvy designers, interior grandeur can be achieved virtually.

Atlanta-based designer Gina Sims is one of many interior designers offering virtual design services to help clients get the spaces they want while respecting social distancing. She has offered her virtual service, called eDesign, for years, but has seen increasing demand since people returned home with more time to look at their walls. Some designers, like Carmeon Hamilton of Memphis-based Nubi Interiors, took the opportunity to move from designing in person only to providing digital offerings and services. “The coronavirus was the confirmation I needed,” she says Beautiful House. And if more time at home has taught us anything, it’s the importance of living in a space that you love. Here’s what to know before embarking on digital design services.

A dining room by Sandra Funk

Marc Weinberg

Digital design services are more affordable than full service design, but more work for the owner

Sandra Funk of New York-based House of Funk has been offering a digital design service for three years. His program involves the customer sending him pictures of the room as well as the dimensions. In return, the customer gets a fully executed design with a link to recommended products for purchase. On the other hand, when she and her team provide a full design service, they take care of everything from project management to purchase to installation. “When we take on all of this work and responsibility, we obviously get paid for it. So that’s the big difference. Pay someone else to run it instead of doing it yourself, ”says Funk.

Brittany Tompkins of MP James in Southern California said: “The ideal customer for this is someone who is on a budget and also doesn’t mind ordering, doesn’t mind putting the furniture together. same, but who just really needs help with what to do. should put in their space and what looks good and where to shop. If you’re okay with putting furniture together and sourcing items yourself, then you’re golden.

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An interior by Brittany Tompkins.

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Working with a designer, even virtually, can be more personal than using design services.

It’s understandable that homeowners want to use virtual design companies like Modsy and Havenly, companies that also make design suggestions based on photos of your room. Their prices are affordable, with plans starting at just $ 89. But then you would lose the personal touch of a designer who works with you from start to finish. Even working virtually with a designer, you can make a connection and make your voice heard.

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A living room by Sara Noble.

Courtesy of Noble Designs

Many designers use video conferencing for design consultations. Sara Noble of Noble Designs in Kansas City is a fan of Zoom when it comes to working with virtual clients. “With Zoom, it’s so easy to make eye contact during a conference call and see body language and understand what the person is saying more clearly,” she says. It also gives her the ability to show customers the exact items she’s talking about through Zoom’s screen sharing.

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A living room by Gina Sims.

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For the best digital experience possible, be careful with your measurements and photos

Since designers cannot walk into clients’ homes to take measurements on their own, they rely heavily on the client to take good measurements. Funk says, “It’s a skill set that designers learn early in their careers and they learn to be crazy. But it’s hard to translate for someone who isn’t an engineer, an architect, or a designer.

To get the right dimensions, Funk suggests taking the overall measurements first and drawing your room as best you can. Then incorporate the smaller dimensions and make sure that when you add them up they match your overall dimensions.

Taking photos is easier, but still a process. The goal is to give the designer pictures of each corner of the room. Noble suggests standing in a corner and shooting around the room, trying to capture the same corner twice so you can piece the room together. “You create a panoramic view and we can piece it together,” Noble explains.

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A Cameron Hamilton bedroom.

Courtesy of Nubi Interiors

There is a designer for every budget

While these online services are more affordable than going all out, the price tag can still shock you. But there really is a designer for every budget, so take your time and shop around. Even among the designers we spoke with, there is a whole range of prices and services available: Tompkins’ plans start at $ 350, Sims electronics design services start at $ 675 for small parts, and Funk charges a flat rate. of $ 2,500.

When choosing a designer’s virtual blueprint, keep your goal in mind – are you looking to make some changes or do you want a complete overhaul? – and don’t forget that a good design is an investment. And keep Hamilton’s words in mind: “I believe with all my heart that right now, when people are forced to stay at home, it is more important than ever that people live in spaces where they like to be. Now this is something worth investing in.

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