What Does a Design Timeline Really Look Like? - Blakely Interior Design (2022)

The true nature of a design project’s timeline can be tough to nail down without some expertise. And home makeover shows, though entertaining, certainly don’t help create realistic expectations. If you’re considering an interior design project now or in the future, it’s important to have realistic expectations. Success in the real world is very different from success on TV.

To help pull back the curtain, I’m sharing the phases and timelines you can expect from a design project with or without construction. In short, most full service design projects will take at least 6 months to complete all phases, and often times longer depending on the scope of the project. It’s important to factor this into your desired completion date!

Calendar and notepad ready? Let’s go!

Edit: Due to the pandemic, we are still seeing many delays in production and shipping due to shutdowns. These types of delays are unfortunately out of our control, but we have learned the amount of cushion needed to properly construct your project’s schedule. We will map out your exact timeline together, but for a quick estimation, add 20% to all timelines quoted here.

What Does a Design Timeline Really Look Like? - Blakely Interior Design (1)

Phase I: Assembling a Team You Trust

I talked about how to assemble your design project’s dream team here, but as far as timeline goes, you’ll want to start finding your squad well in advance.

Design and building professionals will have to schedule your project around their current work and thanks to the uptick of the economy, most of us are usually booked several months out. (Once you decide on a design or contractor, get on their schedule!!!)

One of the reasons we suggest starting your team with a designer is because we use your goals (shared in your initial design consultation) to create a schedule for everything: every meeting, presentation, necessary approval, construction or design phase, and project wrap-up.

This lets you plan ahead and keep your personal schedule as uninterrupted as possible.

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Timeline: A few weeks to a few months, depending on the team members needed

Phase II: Schematic Design

What Does a Design Timeline Really Look Like? - Blakely Interior Design (2)

The Schematic Design phase consists of a fully conceptualized plan for your space. Just a few of the many details we nail down in this phase:

  • Your project timeline, complete with all phase, meeting, and presentation dates
  • Space plan based on your desires and needs
  • List of products that will need to be sourced
  • Range of possible investments for Good, Better, and Best levels of furnishings
  • Design concept boards to capture the “vibe” or “feel” of the space

This is crucial for any successful design project, but especially if your project involves construction. We’ll know in advance how many walls are staying, whether plumbing is getting moved, and the general level of finishes you want.

This is a HUGE advantage for getting accurate quotes from contractors!

Standard Timeline for Schematic Phase:

  • Single Room: 2-3 weeks
  • Whole House: 4-6 weeks


Design Timeline with Construction:

  • Single Room: 2-3 weeks + 2-4 weeks to obtain contractor quotes
  • Whole House: 4-6 weeks + 4-5 weeks to obtain contractor quotes

Phase III: Design Development

This is where we really get down to business! Taking your budget and the concepts we developed in the Schematic Design phase, we’ll make selections for every detail in your space… furnishings, fabrics, finishes, lighting, plumbing fixtures, draperies, trim, etc.

For construction projects, we make all selections that will impact construction first (i.e. we pick tile, flooring, etc. BEFORE sourcing sofas and rugs).

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Every. Last. Detail. To be mindful of your budget, we also collect quotes and samples as we go — which we make sure to align with our predetermined timeline.

Next, you’ll be presented with our selections! You’ll have the opportunity to share any feedback and receive any revisions. Once approved, we create proposals for the items, receive payment, and submit official purchase orders on your behalf.

Standard Timeline for Design Development Phase:

  • Single Room: 2-3 weeks for selections + 1-2 weeks for revisions and proposal creation
  • Whole House: 4-6 weeks for selections + 2-3 weeks for revisions and proposal creation


Design Timeline with Construction:

  • Single Room: 2-3 weeks for construction selections + 1-2 weeks for revisions
  • Whole House: 4-6 weeks for selections + 2-3 weeks for revisions

Please Note: If materials are specified during this phase but not ordered shortly thereafter in Phase IV, you run the risk of your items becoming unavailable and potentially pushing back your timeline.

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Construction Documentation

This is the process of finalizing all drawings, which usually include a final space plan, reflected lighting plan (RCP), switching plan, millwork elevations, as well as detailed finish and material schedules. This simply tells the contractor and his team what materials were selected, where they go, in what direction.

For large projects, this could be hundreds of line items! Keeping them all straight is imperative to ensure proper installation — and other reason why our meticulous organization is so important.

Timeline: 2-4 weeks, but up to several months for an architectural project

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Phase IV: Item Procurement

You won’t see much going on during this phase, but this is when the most magic is happening behind the scenes — and our buttoned-up processes really come into play!

Procurement involves placing highly detailed orders for your items, communicating with vendors and manufacturers, tracking shipments and deliveries, handling any issues that arise, and storing every item with the utmost care in our warehouse…

…along with receiving the items, checking them for damage, managing them as needed, and prepping the lot for delivery.

This is also when we start planning and gearing up for Phase V, your highly-anticipated Install Day!

Standard Timeline for Procurement Phase:

  • Single Room: 1-2 weeks for ordering + 6-12 week lead time
  • Whole House: 2-3 weeks for ordering + 6-12 week lead time


Design Timeline with Construction:

  • Single Room: 1-2 weeks for ordering + 2-6 week lead time
  • Whole House: 3-4 weeks for ordering + 2-6 week lead time

Please Note: Any delays in payment will delay the ordering of your materials selections, which runs the risk of your items becoming unavailable and potentially pushing back your timeline. (Gasp!)

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[Construction-Only Phase] The Actual Construction

Once construction is underway, you can expect renovations to take anywhere from 3 weeks to several months depending on the scope of your project.

You’ll know the timeline of your construction project well in advance (see Phase II), so you can schedule around it and keep your usual lifestyle as uninterrupted as possible.

Timeline for Construction: 3 weeks to several months, depending on the scope

What Does a Design Timeline Really Look Like? - Blakely Interior Design (6)

Phase V: In-Home Installation

Treat yourself to day out while the Blakely team goes all hands on deck! This is the moment when we finally get to install the items we’ve ordered for you and professionally style your space to the nth degree.

You know that moment on design shows when the homeowners gasp, laugh, and cry all at once? When you arrive home at the end of the day and see your new space, you’ll know exactly how all those emotions are possible!

Don’t worry, though — we’ll all be laughing and crying right along with you. 🙂

Standard Timeline: 1 day, 2-3 days for larger projects

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Whew! Not quite the snap of the fingers TV makes it out to be, right? But I can tell you… the final result is no less magical. More so, in fact, since it’s yours.

While these time estimates should help you calculate a rough start date and timeline for your project, our Interior Design Project Planner is an equally valuable resource for you. Be sure to download it if you haven’t yet!

Xoxo,

FAQs

What are the 5 stages of the design process interior design? ›

Interior Design Process – The 5 Phases. Strategic Planning Phase. Conceptual Development Phase. Design Development Phase.

How long is the interior design process? ›

In short, most full service design projects will take at least 6 months to complete all phases, and often times longer depending on the scope of the project.

What is the most important thing in interior design? ›

Space. While all seven elements on this list are indispensable components of interior design, space is perhaps the most important to get right.

What are the four steps in the interior design process? ›

The main phases in the design process are:

Concept Development. Presentation. Design and Documentation. Execution.

What are the 7 principles of interior design? ›

Along with balance, rhythm, emphasis, scale and proportion, contrast, and detail, harmony and unity complete the seven principles of interior design—the fundamental elements that help create beautifully designed interiors. Think of them as an interior designer's guiding forces.

What is the design process? ›

Design process is a way of figuring out what you need to do, then doing it. Along the way you might solve one or more problems, try to achieve a goal, and/or create something specific. The first critical step to understanding the design process is that it's not about working the “right way” or “wrong way”.

What is an interior design schedule? ›

What is an Interior Design Schedule? Your interior design work schedule template is your map and guide for each stage of the project journey, including what work will be required and knowing how long each step will take in the timeline.

What is the work schedule like for a interior designer? ›

Interior designers typically work Monday through Friday, though some weekend and evening work is sometimes required. At larger interior design firms or in a retail role, designers typically work anywhere from 40-50 hours per week, though many work closer to 40 hours each week more consistently.

How many hours does it take an interior designer to design a kitchen? ›

Basically designing and delivering one room of window treatments would take approximately 12–15 design hours, from beginning to conclusion of fixing. Similarly designing a kitchen would require approximately 25–30 hours from start to finish.

What is the basic of interior design? ›

These interior design elements include space, line, forms, light, colour, texture and pattern; and keeping them balanced is the key to creating an aesthetically pleasing interior.

What is great interior design? ›

The Great Interior Design Challenge is a British television interior design competition broadcast on BBC Two from 20 January 2014 to 19 January 2017. Each series aims to find "Britain's best amateur interior designers".

What are the main stages of interior design process explain with an example? ›

The Meeting (Excitement and Exploration, Programming) The Work (Space Plans, Materials, Design Boards, and Decisions) The Waiting (Quotes, Proposals, Orders, Deliveries) The Rush (Installation, The Reveal)

What is the first step in interior design? ›

Step 1: Understand Space and Requirement

The first step of the interior designing process is to understand the space and the requirements of each room.

What is the 70/30 rule in interior design? ›

Using 70% cool colours and 30% warm colours, he gets the colours to pop. It's the small amount of warms that makes the cools come to life.

What are the 8 elements of design? ›

All visual designs are composed of eight elements (Point, Line, Shape, Form, Tone, Texture, Color, and/or Text). These elements are combined and arranged to create a desired visual appearance.

What makes a great living room? ›

It makes people at ease and feel like they want to open up. Has the perfect mix of art that complements the room's style, along with a healthy dose of negative space to give the eyes spots to rest. It also has art that has meaning to the people who live in the space, so that every viewing fills them with inspiration.

What are the 5 basic principles of developing an interior design concept? ›

Look for the principles of design as well: Size & Proportion, Balance, Rhythm, Emphasis, and Harmony. If all of those things are there and done correctly, the designer did a great job.

What is the design process steps? ›

This human-centered design process consists of five core stages Empathize, Define, Ideate, Prototype and Test. It's important to note that these stages are a guide.

What is the first step of the design process? ›

Discovery is the first step of the design process, where teams work together to develop an understanding of the problem they are trying to solve, and define the path they will take to explore solutions.

How do I plan an interior design project? ›

How To Plan Your Next Interior Design Project (+ A FREE Downloadable Project Planner Workbook)
  1. PUT YOUR VISION TO PAPER. First things first, you need to work out what you are visualising as the end result. ...
  2. SET A BUDGET. ...
  3. GATHER IDEAS AND INSPIRATION. ...
  4. COMPILE A LIST OF MATERIALS AND RESOURCES. ...
  5. CREATE A PROJECT TIMELINE.

What is the design development phase? ›

Design Development Phase or “DD” means the phase in which design documents are continued from the approved schematic design phase, and which begins to identify site, mechanical, electrical, plumbing, structural and architectural details.

What should be included in an interior design contract? ›

Your contract should include:
  • An introduction to your company.
  • A statement of work.
  • Your purchasing and warranty terms.
  • Your payment terms and refund and cancellation terms.
  • A clause for outside consultants and contractors.
  • The terms for photographs and publicity of your work.
  • An intellectual property clause.
  • Termination terms.
18 Aug 2022

How do interior designers make 6 figures? ›

Marketing your business plays an integral role in helping you put your business (and yourself) on the map and making more money as an interior designer.
  1. Be active on social media.
  2. Use paid advertising.
  3. Get a pro account on Houzz.
  4. Revamp your website.
  5. Start a blog.
28 Mar 2022

What is an interior designer job description? ›

Job Summary:

The Interior Designer will create functional, safe, and aesthetically pleasing spaces by assessing space requirements, determining optimal furniture placement, and selecting decorative items, all while adhering to relevant blueprint, building code, and inspection requirements.

How long does an interior designer take to design a house? ›

Interior design is a process including several people, steps and processes. Depending on the scope of the project, the complexity of the renovation process, the process of interior design takes around 14-31 weeks all in all.

How many hours does it take to design one room? ›

For 20 to 25 hours, you'll have a complete design for your room. If you work this way, you likely get your decorator to give you a flat fee price for the space.

How much should I charge as an interior designer? ›

Most interior designers charge for their time by the hour, anywhere from $50 to $500 depending on their experience. On average you can expect to pay $100 to $200 per hour, typically totaling around $5,200 in design fees, not including the cost of furniture.

What hard skills do interior designers need? ›

What hard skills do interior designers need?
  • Drafting and drawing. Interior designers use drafting skills to create visual representations of structures. ...
  • Computer-aided design (CAD) ...
  • Codes and building standards. ...
  • Project management. ...
  • Construction methods. ...
  • Materials and texture. ...
  • Design principles. ...
  • Lighting and color schemes.
2 Sept 2021

What skills should I have as an interior designer? ›

6 Essential Skills Every Interior Designer Needs
  • A creative eye and attention to detail. First and foremost, you'll need to be highly creative. ...
  • Trend identification. ...
  • Knowledge of sustainable practices. ...
  • Superior communication. ...
  • Sketching ability and computer knowledge. ...
  • Organization.

Is being an interior designer hard? ›

Learning technical skills

While working as an interior designer is a highly creative field, mastering the technical skills required can make being an interior designer hard. Designers often need to be skilled in sketching, digital imaging, computer assisted design (CAD) and 3D modeling.

What is a good design? ›

Good design is a concept defined by industrial designer Dieter Rams's principles: It makes a product useful and understandable, is innovative, aesthetic, unobtrusive, honest, long-lasting, thorough to the last detail, environmentally friendly, and involves as little design as possible.

What are the 3 principles of design? ›

3 Design Principles That Are Guaranteed To Improve Your Art
  • 1) Hierarchy. The first design principle, and most important, is referred to as Hierarchy. ...
  • 2) Balance. Another valuable principle of design is called Balance. ...
  • 3) Scale. The last principle that is vital to your art piece is Scale.
25 Aug 2014

Who won the Great Interior Design Challenge 2022? ›

After a tough final, Banjo Beale was named the winner of Interior Design Masters 2022! Congratulations!

Who won the Great Big Tiny design Challenge 2022? ›

Dom Kane, 31, from Wakefield, was announced as the winner of the show when the final aired on Sunday, May 15.

What is the role of interior design in total design process? ›

Interior design is the art and science of enhancing the interior of a building to achieve a healthier and more aesthetically pleasing environment for the people using the space. An interior designer is someone who plans, researches, coordinates, and manages such enhancement projects.

What are the elements of interior design and explain it? ›

What are the 7 elements of design? The 7 elements of design consider space, line, form, light, color, texture and pattern. A balance of these elements is vital to every scheme.

What is design analysis in interior design? ›

Design analysis is the systematic process of developing a design including all information discovery, planning and communications. This can be applied to any type of design including the design of physical things such as buildings and intangible things such as software, information and processes.

Which room should I design first? ›

The first rooms you should decorate are your living room and kitchen. These rooms are in the highest traffic areas in your home, and therefore, should be done first. Afterward, decorating the master bedroom (and other used bedrooms), followed by bathrooms and guest bedrooms, is the best room order for home decorating.

What are the 5 steps to the design process? ›

The Five Phases of Design Thinking

The short form of the design thinking process can be articulated in five steps or phases: empathize, define, ideate, prototype and test.

What is the 80/20 rule in interior design? ›

It's called the 80-20 rule and it's very simple: if you decorate 80% of a room in neutral colors, you can get very colorful with the other 20%.

How many colors is too many in a room? ›

How many colors should you use in a room? According to the 60-30-10 rule, you should only use three colors in any room – although you can successfully incorporate many different tones of these three colors.

Should all walls be the same color? ›

Should I paint my entire home one color? As a general rule of thumb, you should never paint your entire home one singular color. That isn't to say that you can't use the same color in some capacity throughout your entire home; however, it shouldn't be the primary wall color in every room.

What is the first step of interior design? ›

Step 1: Understand Space and Requirement

The first step of the interior designing process is to understand the space and the requirements of each room.

What is the design development phase? ›

Design Development Phase or “DD” means the phase in which design documents are continued from the approved schematic design phase, and which begins to identify site, mechanical, electrical, plumbing, structural and architectural details.

What is design development in interior design? ›

Design Development

They are space planning to ensure everything fits well in the space and reviewing specifications with a general contractor. As the client, you can expect one or two meetings in this phase to review the final design, preliminary floor plans and elevations as well as furniture.

What is the 70/30 rule in interior design? ›

Using 70% cool colours and 30% warm colours, he gets the colours to pop. It's the small amount of warms that makes the cools come to life.

How do I develop an interior design plan? ›

10 easy steps for a great interior design
  1. Step 1: Take the measurements of your room. ...
  2. Step 2: Identify the best natural lighting. ...
  3. Step 3: Choose what to plan your design around. ...
  4. Step 4: Decide on colours. ...
  5. Step 5: Gather a colour patchwork. ...
  6. Step 6: Start with the walls. ...
  7. Step 7: Consider the floor.

Why is the design phase important? ›

The design phase, or pre-construction phase, for commercial construction is especially important because you want to ensure that every decision being made will maximize your investment. With a creative partner you can trust, this pre-construction phase will help set your project up for success.

What is a design and development plan? ›

The purpose of the design and development plan section is to provide investors with a description of the product's design, chart its development within the context of production, marketing, and the company itself, and create a development budget that will enable the company to reach its goals.

What is the role of interior design in total design process? ›

Interior design is the art and science of enhancing the interior of a building to achieve a healthier and more aesthetically pleasing environment for the people using the space. An interior designer is someone who plans, researches, coordinates, and manages such enhancement projects.

How do you handle an interior design project? ›

Project Management for Interior Designers: 6 Tips for Staying Organized
  1. Set a morning routine. ...
  2. Set a project schedule and communicate timelines for each phase. ...
  3. Brush up on your budgeting and invoicing skills. ...
  4. Delegate your work. ...
  5. Look for an interior design project management software. ...
  6. Organize your digital files.
13 Aug 2021

What should be included in an interior design contract? ›

Your contract should include:
  • An introduction to your company.
  • A statement of work.
  • Your purchasing and warranty terms.
  • Your payment terms and refund and cancellation terms.
  • A clause for outside consultants and contractors.
  • The terms for photographs and publicity of your work.
  • An intellectual property clause.
  • Termination terms.
18 Aug 2022

What is the 80/20 rule in interior design? ›

It's called the 80-20 rule and it's very simple: if you decorate 80% of a room in neutral colors, you can get very colorful with the other 20%.

How many colors is too many in a room? ›

How many colors should you use in a room? According to the 60-30-10 rule, you should only use three colors in any room – although you can successfully incorporate many different tones of these three colors.

What is a reasonable budget for interior design? ›

No matter the billing strategy, most interior design projects will cost, in total, between $1,500 to $12,000 for the designer themselves, not including furniture costs. The average for a typical home is about $5,000.

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