Home Decorating and Staging
Insider Secrets to a Beautiful Home

FAQ Career in Interior Decorating
for Students

FAQ Career in Interior Decorating for Students

Frequently I get emails from students working on assignments to help them decide what career they want to pursue. When you're still in school it can be tough to imagine what kind of work you want to do for the next 30 years. A lucky few seem to know right from the beginning. But most of us figure it out along the way.

I've had several careers in my life and I enjoyed each one in different ways. There were always things I didn't like about one or another, but no career will ever be perfect all the time. What you do want, however, is to do something where the positives far outweigh the negatives.

In other words, something you love. Something where you lose track of time and feel absolute exhilaration when you get it right. Something that provides value to you and to others. And if you're lucky, something you love so much you'd want to do it even if they didn't pay you.

But you want them to pay you. You deserve to be paid in direct measure to the value you provide. And the more prepared you are in terms of education, training and experience, the more beauty you will add to this world, and the more valued you will become.

Parade of Homes Solterra 2008

Many of the questions I receive fall into the same basic categories, so I've compiled the following for those of you who may be interested.

FAQ Career in Interior Decorating for Students

  1. Do you enjoy decorating? I enjoy decorating very much. Each home is different, but after awhile you start to notice a pattern. Things just seem to fit together in ways that create a harmonious outcome. It's like music. You use all the same notes but you can make many different songs. In decorating you use all the same tools, but with different results.
  2. Is it very difficult? It's harder at the beginning when you're learning everything. Then it gets easier and you have more confidence in yourself. You realize you can deal with just about any situation. You even welcome the challenges because they lead you to new discoveries.
  3. What gave you the idea to make this your long term career? I’ve always loved looking at houses. And I’ve always enjoyed art, decorating, color, books and magazines about decorating, interior design, and landscaping. I love being in a beautiful home and I love helping others make their homes more beautiful and functional. I get excited about it!
  4. What do you do daily for this job? Each day is different and that’s part of the fun. One day I may be picking out tile, paint, counters and cabinets for a client. Another day I may be helping someone rearrange their furniture to make their home look better. The next day I might be picking out rental furniture to put in a vacant home to get it ready to sell. Then there’s always the business side, billing and keeping records. I also try to work on my website as much as possible.
  5. What education is needed for this job? An Interior Design degree is the official education for this job. But I don’t have one. I took several staging training courses and mostly learned by doing. I take workshops whenever I see a good one because you can never know too much. I also study magazines like House Beautiful, Architectural Digest, Traditional home, Veranda and others to keep up with trends.
  6. How do you know you're cut out for the job? If you love creating beautiful spaces, you’re probably cut out for the job. I think you’re potentially cut out for whatever makes you happy and excited when you’re doing it.
  7. Any tips if I make this my career? Learn all you can about color, fabrics, decorating trends (they change gradually every year) how to arrange rooms, and business. At the bottom of every career you have to earn an income and manage money. Then, start practicing at home. Rearrange your bedroom, or other areas of the house. Most decorators start out decorating their homes, dollhouses, their room, etc.. Decorate your friends rooms (if they'll let you!). And most of all, make it fun. If you work hard and enjoy what you do, you will succeed. For a bird's eye view of the staging business see home stager.

This list of FAQ Career in Interior Decorating for Students covers all the basic questions I've received from students so far. I hope the answers give you some insight into the business and help you decide what career you might like to pursue.

If you have a question that I haven't covered, feel free to ask it on my Help page. Thanks for your interest and good luck. I wish you much happiness and success in your chosen field!

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FAQ Career in Interior Decorating for Students

Alex Hinst is the author of Home Decorating and Staging and owner of Alex Hinst Designs, located in Denver's Historic Highlands.

Alex Hinst Designs has hundreds of success stories in both private and investor home renovations and is dedicated to helping you create your perfect home.