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Sunday, January 17, 2010

Interior Design Sense - Importance of Planning Ahead

Hello everyone!

This is the first time I have ever posted a blog, hopefully I will get the hang of it fairly fast...and keep things interesting for you! I am looking forward to posting my take on the coming interior trends of 2010 & sharing my tips on the best places to shop on line & on the ground....

The reason behind this blog is to post my views on the in's & out's of contemporary interiors in Ireland, which have become increasingly popular in the last 10 to 15 years. More and more people are opting for a clean contemporary look now, as opposed to the softer more traditional interiors previously adorning our Irish homes. Also I am of course introducing myself, my business and hoping get feed back on any issues that you have experienced during your own building projects. You know...the kind of things that may have compromised your final result because a duct was omitted or a power cable didn’t appear where expected! I am interested in hearing comments from all the self builders, renovators, new home owners or existing home owners out there. Well, really just about any one who is making the most of the space they live in...I am in contact with clients everyday who come to me for advice when trying to create their perfect interior spaces for their homes.

So what exactly is interior architecture you may ask?

It basically refers to the design and coordination of the interior fabric of the building at a deeper level than an interior decorator would be involved, interior decorators mainly deal with an existing space applying a look to the room, where as many Interior Architects would be involved in the project from the begining shaping the room around a design concept. Interior Architecture can influence the interior structure of the room/building, positions of walls/doors/nibs etc. So working in conjunction with the project architect prior to commencement on site is extremely important. It is very easy to change door positions or nib walls on paper, moving them on site after they are built is far more expensive and time consuming....

My service entails developing a unique interior design concept for my clients, followed by a full set of technical drawings and schedules allowing accurate tendering prior to the build and cost control during the build and finally on site co-ordination services to help my clients implement the design right through to completion.

Some of my clients come to me halfway through their build when they encounter problems in developing their interior design concept or when trying to pull all their interior design ideas together. Many find it difficult to communicate their concept to the tradesmen (or women!) on site without having the correct drawings on hand or anyone to answer technical questions for them. Or worse still they have made some expensive mistakes!

I have found that many clients do not realise that building is an exact science. Contrary to the popular belief that "we can deal with that at a later stage"! The time to deal with it is right now. It is like this, it's 10mm or it's 20mm, it is obvious to me that these are not the same and it may sound insignificant to many but when you are dealing with contemporary interiors, being exact is key to achieving that streamlined look which is a contemporary interior trade mark. Contemporary interiors may look simple but the reason they look simple is because they are planned well in advance down to the millimetre. Therein lays their beauty.

Designing your dream bathrooms & kitchen, storage areas, electrics & lighting for example all take technical knowledge and on site know how. There is no reason why your entire home could not be fully designed and documented prior to breaking ground on site, but I have found more often than not so many couples plough ahead not realising that all elements in your home need to be pre-planned well in advance and are of an exact nature.

For example adding extra height to your ground floor ceiling during the build (which most importantly contravenes your planning permission) will affect your stairs, making it longer than originally measured. If an extra step is required the stairs may no longer fit in its allocated position. Changing the floor to ceiling height may also affect the angle of your stairs making it steeper, to the point that it may no longer comply with building regulations. So be very careful.

That’s all I have time for right now, but I will be back with another blog very soon.