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Interior Design vs. Interior Decorating

The Art and the Science of Interior Design

Photo: Michaela Satterfield

Photo: Michaela Satterfield

There is much confusion surrounding the field of interior design. Many wonder if it is a valid field, thinking there is little skill required in choosing sofa fabrics and drapery colors. Some believe you just have to have a “knack” for it — designing spaces requires little more than some extra creativity.

What many don’t realize, however, is that interior design is not just an art. There is a science to it.

While there are many similarities between interior decorators and interior designers, the fundamental difference is in education.

Interior decorators work to help clients choose décor for their homes. There is no doubt that this requires plenty of interpersonal skill and creativity. Decorators have a natural talent for deciding which things would work together. They are experts on finishes, accessories and furniture.

Interior designers, on the other hand, have obtained a formal degree in interior design, whether that be a Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts in interior design. The big concepts of interior design — like sustainability, universal design and an understanding of the construction of a building — are what interior designers may understand better than interior decorators.

Designers look beyond the surface of each building they design. They understand how homes and buildings work on a structural level. They work with architects and contractors to design the building from the blueprints to the finished product, keeping in mind important things like building codes and space planning.

The choice of hiring a designer or a decorator, then, depends on what kind of work you need done. If the work is primarily aesthetic, either a decorator or designer can get the job done. If there are more structural changes needed, a designer will have the education to get that done as well.

Michaela Satterfield

James Décor Writer

Sources:

https://newschoolarch.edu/academics/school-of-design/bachelor-of-interior-design/interior-designer-and-decorator/

https://www.thespruce.com/interior-design-vs-interior-decorating-1976740

Scandinavian Interior Design

The Cozy Minimalist Style

Photo: https://www.maxpixel.net/Home-Nordic-Household-2394831

Photo: https://www.maxpixel.net/Home-Nordic-Household-2394831

Like a light summer breeze, the Scandinavian interior design style is airy and soothing. The blank spaces are as intentional as the décor itself. Brought about by years of tradition, this style pulls off timeless and modern in the same breath.

This style originated in the Nordic region, which is notorious for long, dark winters. The goal of these interiors is to keep things bright and open, but cozy at the same time. This is no easy feat.

Originating in an environment where natural light is in short supply, the way light is used in these spaces is very important. Lots of windows with sheer coverings are popular.

Photo: https://pixabay.com/photos/stay-scandinavian-style-white-room-2132344/

Photo: https://pixabay.com/photos/stay-scandinavian-style-white-room-2132344/

Other minimalist styles are typically cold and uninviting. The Scandinavian style uses lots of textures — like blankets, rugs and throws — to soften the stark white that is a trademark of this style. Stark contrast, like black and white, is one aspect this style uses.

Another big difference between Scandinavian design and other modern styles is the use of color. While neutrals are an essential component, bursts of other colors are used as well. These colors are typically softer, like pastels.

The style is tidy and doesn’t have a lot of ornate detail. The details, however, are intentional. A well placed piece of artwork or pop of texture prevents the clean style from looking too cold.

Photo: https://www.pexels.com/photo/round-black-framed-mirror-on-the-wall-905198/

Photo: https://www.pexels.com/photo/round-black-framed-mirror-on-the-wall-905198/

Minimalist furniture is often used, such as Mid-century modern pieces. These pieces are slim and light, rather than bulky.

You won’t find wall-to-wall carpet in these interiors. Wood floors with plenty of rugs are the norm. Wood is typically light — like beech, ash and pine.

Nature themes are also common. You’ll find botanical artwork, plants and tree branches throughout Scandinavian spaces.

Like a refreshing summer breeze in the middle of winter, the Scandinavian style is a sure way to bring a refreshing yet cozy touch to your space.

Michaela Satterfield

James Décor Writer

Sources:

https://www.mydomaine.com/scandinavian-interior-design-ideas

http://www.contemporist.com/10-common-features-of-scandinavian-interior-design/