Tag Archives: Portland OR

Professional Interior Designers: Why You Need One and How to Find One

Do you ever find yourself standing in a room of your house, wishing you could figure out how to make it look “right”? Do you look at an empty white wall and freeze because there are just too many possibilities? If so, it might be time to consider interviewing some professional interior designers.

Regardless of the scope of your project, having an interior designer on your side will help you achieve the look you want. Reach out to Kym at Design Elements NW for a free consultation to start creating the home of your dreams.

What Does an Interior Designer Do?

Back in the day, the stereotypical interior designer was all about picking drapes and helping a homeowner accessorize. The old sitcom, Designing Women, may come to mind for some people. 

Professional interior designers in previous generations could come across as being over-the-top and only for the immensely wealthy.

Fortunately, modern sensibilities now recognize how valuable a designer is for just about any space. People want interiors that feel comfortable and luxurious and well-planned. They want their areas to feel welcoming and relaxing. Most importantly, homeowners want their spaces to feel right for them.

Gone are the days when an interior designer only considered paint colors and drapery styles.  Today’s professionals can play many roles and work in various settings:

  • Project Manager – Some interior design experts are the general contractor on their projects. They find and hire all of the sub-contractors needed to complete the job. For example, they choose who to use for cabinets, countertops, flooring, and more.
  • Remodel Work – Designers are not only there to help with colors and fabrics. They have the skills to help you envision a whole new space. They can draw up plans that show new layouts and additions.
  • New Construction – Brand new building projects are an excellent opportunity to utilize a professional interior designer. Working from the ground up. Your design expert can help with planning, blueprint assessment, and job completion.
  • Sustainable Building – Interior designers with training in sustainability help you make Earth-friendly choices. Typically, these practices focus on using energy-efficient appliances and eco-friendly building materials.
  • Universal Design – This type of design expertise focuses on making spaces accessible to everyone, regardless of age or physical abilities. It is also useful for allowing people to age in place.
  • Corporate Design – Interior designers do not work only in homes. Businesses and government agencies also need these services. Modern corporate and government spaces rely heavily on sustainable, universal design.

How Do Professional Interior Designers Work?

Each professional will have their own process, but in general, you can expect them to touch on each of the following areas.

Initial Consultation

Many designers offer a free short consultation to get the ball rolling. If you decide to move forward, you can expect a much longer and more thorough appointment the next time. The designer is likely to have you fill out a questionnaire to help them understand your wishes and goals. 

This step is when the designer will explain their process, their payment structure, and what you can expect from them. It is also when you should ask any questions you have about how the project will go. Don’t hold back. Construction and remodeling projects have a lot of moving parts, and you deserve to have all the information possible.

Budget Talks

No matter the size of your project or the size of your bank account, you have to set a budget with your designer. This step isn’t the most exciting and glamorous part of the process. But it is one of the most critical steps. It will determine almost every choice as you move forward.

Design Plans and Boards

Your design pro may ask you to start a notebook, file, or Pinterest board filled with examples of looks and styles you like. This collection could include color swatches, fabrics, or pictures from a magazine. If you have a specific statement piece that will be in the room, be sure to share that with the designer.

Eventually, they will create a design plan for you to approve. It may have drawings, 3D renderings, or a physical design board with fabric and countertop options attached. Their plan may include all of those pieces. They won’t move forward with the project until you approve the design.

It is vital to remember that after you give your approval, it is likely that any changes will involve a fee. So work through all the nuances with your designer before you give the green light.

Project Completion

Once you give the plan a thumbs-up, your design professional will work their magic. Depending on the scope of the project, there may be other check-in times along the way. At these points, you may need to approve the next step before work resumes.

For significant remodels or new construction, there will be a lot of people involved in the work. Throughout the project, you may see:

  • Electricians
  • Plumbers
  • Flooring Installers
  • Cabinet Makers
  • Window Installers
  • Painters

Final Walkthrough

Once the job wraps up, you and the designer will walk through and check everything. This opportunity lets you enjoy and admire your impressive new space. It also gives you the chance to discuss anything that isn’t quite right or that still needs attention from the design team. 

How Do I Find an Interior Designer?

When it’s time to overhaul your home or start a new building project, you want the best designer for the job. But choosing a professional for the project can feel overwhelming. Here are some steps you can take to be sure you have a great experience.

  • Seek referrals. Your friends and family may have someone they have worked with and can recommend. Asking around is a perfect first step.
  • Ask plenty of questions. When you meet with a prospective designer, ask all you can about their process. You don’t want any surprises down the road.
  • Look at their portfolio. Be sure to ask to see photos of the designer’s work. You want to find someone whose style suits you and your needs.
  • Find someone you connect with personally. You will be spending a significant amount of time with your designer. And you will need to make many decisions together. Be sure you feel comfortable with the person you choose. You want to enjoy a smooth journey to your new beautiful space.

A Design Expert at Your Side

When you need to find an interior designer you can trust, reach out to Design Elements NW. As the premier design firm in Portland, OR, we have the honor of helping our clients create beautiful spaces. We look forward to helping you reclaim the haven in your home.

5 Interior Design Tips and Tricks to Turn Your Bathroom Into a Spa

There is one room in your home where you just might be able to get some uninterrupted peace and quiet. In theory, your bathroom is a spot that should give you a little privacy and a chance to relax as you enjoy your tub or shower. You want to make the most of those minutes. So let’s look at some interior design tips and tricks you can use to give your bathroom a spa-like feel.

Those with young children might wonder what this privacy-in-the-bathroom thing is. But the day is coming. I promise! But no matter how much time you get to yourself, it’s worth the splurge to turn your bathroom into a spa.

Design Elements NW is the go-to interior design firm in Portland, OR. From new construction to spa retreat updates, our team turns your home into the haven you deserve. We’d love to connect and see how we can help with your next project. Reach out today for a complimentary consultation.

Why Worry About the Bathroom?

For many homeowners, the bathroom is the last project they think about in the house. Communal areas like kitchens and bonus rooms can take center stage for updates and upgrades.

But bathrooms deserve your attention, too. Estimates show that the average person spends up to two and a half years of their life in the bathroom. That’s a lot of hours. 

If you’re going to be in there that much, you might as well take advantage of some spa bathroom ideas. With some minor updates and changes, you can have a sanctuary you will love.

And decking out your bathroom isn’t just for aesthetics. Bathroom upgrades are one of the best investments you can make for resale value. Whether you plan to sell soon or not, updating your bathroom is a brilliant choice.

Create an Oasis With Interior Design Tips and Tricks

Transforming your bathroom into a home spa doesn’t require a significant investment unless you are ready to replace everything. By all means, if your time and budget allow, a full bathroom remodel will give you a stunning space.

But even if you aren’t quite ready for that scope of a project, here are five interior design tips to help you love your room.

1. Cut Out the Clutter

Think of any time you have visited a spa or seen photos online. Clutter isn’t a thing in those spaces. Bathrooms inherently have a lot of items lurking about, so you may have to be creative in keeping things organized. Consider using the following ideas to corral all the bathroom items that can take up space:

  • Wicker Baskets
  • Glass Jars
  • Shelves Above the Toilet
  • Shower or Bathtub Caddy

Whenever possible, keep items out of sight in a cabinet or closet. To achieve your spa feel, you should have minimal amounts of things out in the bathroom. Spending a little time and money to make sure everything has a home will go a long way to creating a peaceful room.

2. Go for Some Green

Living plants are an excellent addition to your bathroom space. They not only raise the spa ambiance in a bathroom; they are good for you. Studies show that plants help clean your air, reduce your stress, and provide an overall mental boost.

Choosing plants for your bathroom can be a little tricky due to the conditions in a typical home restroom. Generally, bathrooms have high humidity, wide temperature fluctuations, and low natural light levels. 

But this doesn’t mean you are stuck with fake greenery. Many houseplants can thrive in this setting. Many of them originate in tropical climates, which kind of fits the conditions in an average home’s bathroom.

  • Begonias
  • Aloe Vera
  • Bromeliads
  • Ferns
  • Chinese Evergreens
  • ZZ Plant
  • Orchids

Enjoy a visit to a local nursery to bring some lush greenery into your beautiful space. You will love how plants can make you feel.

3. It’s All About the Towels

What is one of the first things that comes to mind when you think of a spa experience? For most people, it’s the thick, luxurious towels. Your towels are one of the few things that come into contact with your whole body, so why not splurge? Take some time to shop for towels that feel and look amazing, and you will feel so spoiled every time you use them. 

And to take your home spa to the next level, think outside the towel rack when it comes to displaying your towels. Rolled up washcloths and hand towels can fit in a wine rack mounted on the wall. Folded bath towels look inviting when they rest on a wooden stool near the shower or tub. Or you can hang them on a decorative wooden ladder leaning against the wall. Any of these interior designer tips will help you forget you’re at home rather than at a day spa.

4. Don’t Forget the Candles

No spa is complete without candles. They immediately add a sense of calm and peacefulness to any room. Find a few places to tuck candles for a warm, serene glow. Or choose a spot where you can put 10-12 candles of varying sizes for a stunning display and comforting feel.

You have endless options when it comes to candles. You can find them in all sizes and colors, scented and unscented. Some even come with affirmations included. The addition of these gems is a quick, affordable way to transform your bathroom into a spa.

5. Add Your Posh Touches

To finish your transformation, update some of the basics in your bathroom. Having a luxurious rug underfoot and hanging a beautiful shower curtain are simple spa bathroom ideas that have a big impact. 

And don’t forget about the artwork. Including one statement piece that is in line with your design style will significantly change the look and feel of your new spa space. 

Design Elements NW Can Transform Any Home

Whether you’re ready to do a full remodel or need help with one area in your house, Design Elements NW can help. With our expert interior design tips and tricks, we help you achieve the home of your dreams.

Get started with a free consultation with Kym. Soon you’ll be on your way to reclaiming the haven in your home.

5 Best Home Improvement Projects for Resale

Interior design in Portland, OR

As spring approaches, many homeowners are thinking about getting their houses on the market. But it’s rare for a property to be sale-ready without some work. It can be hard to decide which home improvement projects are best for resale. But if you’re ready to list your home, or just want to enjoy some improvements, some remodeling options will give you the most bang for your buck.

And if you feel stuck about where to start on your updates, reach out to Design Elements NW for a consultation. Whether you’re ready to sell or just moving in, we have the expertise to make your dreams a reality and turn your home into a haven. We offer stunning interior design in Portland, OR, for all your home project needs.

How to Choose the Best Home Improvement Projects

Homeowners can often go into a state of “paralysis by analysis” when it comes to updating their homes. There is so much information in our modern world of Pinterest boards and DIY websites that it can stop you in your tracks. You could end up overpaying for something that won’t serve your purposes.

Perhaps you are getting ready to move and are wondering which renovations are a good idea. Or maybe you just want to be strategic in your home improvements for future resale. Either way, you are eager to get the ball rolling on some upgrades for your house. You can’t go wrong with these five top home remodeling projects since they bring an excellent return on your investment.

1. Kitchen Overhaul

Kitchen Interior Design

Long gone are the days of the kitchen being tucked away, out of sight. Now it is often the centerpiece of a home’s layout and welcoming design. Friends and family enjoy cooking together and lingering in the kitchen as they prepare meals. 

A beautiful, functional kitchen generally ranks at the top of the list for prospective buyers, so it should be the first area that gets your attention if you’re thinking about resale. You have a wide range of projects to consider, depending on your timeframe and budget.

For a simple update, consider fresh paint, new counters, and new cabinet faces. Making sure these pieces look clean, modern, and inviting will go a long way to showcasing your home. An interior designer can help you narrow down your color and style choices to just the right fit for your house.

For a more significant wow factor, consider a full kitchen remodel. Working with an expert designer and project manager, you can create a stunning showstopper. New cabinets, upgraded appliances, and a practical layout will give you a kitchen you can love for years to come, or one that will make potential buyers say, “Here’s our fabulous offer!”

2. Bathroom Addition

A bathroom addition may sound like a big undertaking, but it is well worth the time and money. Adding another bathroom or half-bath can recoup up to 130% of your investment, making it one of the best home improvement projects possible. And you don’t need to carve out as much space as you might think for this project. Even 18-20 square feet can work for a half-bathroom.

Bathroom Interior Design

Potential homebuyers often won’t even look at a house with only two bathrooms, so adding a third is a smart choice. And if you aren’t ready to sell yet, you can enjoy the convenience of the extra space while you still live there. 

Work with an interior design team to make sure the addition goes smoothly, and you end up with useful square footage to boost the value of your home. Many people choose to tackle this project when they are preparing to refinance. The ROI is high enough that it’s worth getting it done.

3. Energy Efficiency

Millennial homebuyers are looking for particular items on their must-have lists, and energy efficiency is one of them. Updating your appliances, windows, and insulation might not sound very glamorous, but they are valuable improvements. 

If you plan to sell, then these changes make your home more marketable. If you plan to stay in your house, then you will reap the benefit of lower energy bills. Either way, it’s a win-win situation.

4. Bathroom Upgrades

Adding a bathroom to your home is a valuable option. But if you’re not ready to tackle that job, consider updating the existing bathrooms in the house. A bathroom upgrade is one of the top home remodeling projects for resale. To make a simple transformation that will have a huge impact, consider replacing the following pieces for a fresh, attractive look:

  • Flooring
  • Vanity
  • Lighting
  • Mirror
  • Tub or shower
  • Paint
  • Tile
Bathroom Interior Design

Old, dingy bathrooms turn potential buyers away. But with an expert designer at your side, you can have beautiful spaces that make your home look fantastic and draw top-dollar offers. You can turn those outdated bathrooms into luxurious, modern mini-spas. And if you’re not looking to sell yet, then you can enjoy the renovations for yourself. 

5. Think Outside the House

Although everything inside your home is a potential selling point when you list your house, don’t forget about the outside. A prospective buyer’s first impression is critical. If the interior is now stunning, but you neglect the exterior, your property will not show well.

If you want to make your home sparkle for all of your guests and potential buyers, it may be time to replace or refresh these items:

  • Front Door
  • Garage Door
  • Deck or Patio
  • Landscaping
  • Front Porch

People want to have outdoor spaces that feel and look great, so these updates can bring a significant return on your investment. And by handling these projects at the same time, you make it easier to ensure a cohesive, put-together look for the outside of your house.

Work with the Experts

If you are considering any home updates, reach out to Kym at Design Elements NW. As the premier interior designer in Portland, OR, Kym is beautifying the Pacific Northwest one home at a time. From new construction to upgrades for resale, Kym will help you turn your home into a haven for all who enter. Give her a call today.