Sitting one-on-one with founder and CEO Noa Santos, we talk about why it's important to incorporate design (and therefore an interior designer) into our lives.
How does a well-designed space differ from one that is ineffectively or poorly designed?
“A well-designed space makes you feel good, and yet so many people walk through their front door or go to their office, and they’re not excited or bettered by the space they’re in. Good design is a dialogue. You should affect the space you’re in, and your space should then affect you. Both positively.”
Good design is a dialogue. You should affect the space you’re in, and your space should then affect you. Both positively.
Why do you think, then, that typically people settle for a space that is less than ideal?
“I think people are afraid. It’s complicated to execute a well-designed space. There are a lot of moving parts and life gets in the way. A poorly designed space is often why people choose to spend their time outside of their home. They prefer to go to cocktails at a restaurant as opposed to having people over to their home, or they prefer to go on a vacation to find a space that they really love. It’s sad that people have to do that, because once you have a home that you’re really proud of, you will spend more time in it. That’s why it’s worth the investment.”
When should someone hire an interior designer for their home?
People should hire an interior designer when they’re ready to embark on a journey. Design doesn’t have a discreet beginning and end; it’s a constant conversation with yourself. And sometimes you need a partner to help you have that conversation. That’s why you often see clients and interior designers having lifelong relationships and even friendships, because once you start that conversation, you don’t want it to stop. It’s similar to the way you think about your wardrobe. It’s a reflection of who you are. Yes, clothes are pretty to look at, but they mean something more when you put them on. That’s what a space does. It gains complexity and profundity when you inhabit it and when it reflects who you are.”
We often talk about life milestones at Homepolish, but it is important to recognize that design is an ongoing journey that will change with your life.
“Milestones are triggers. Having a baby, moving in with someone, even separations… these are all triggers which help people become more conscious of their space. Your space, your office, your home has such a profound impact on your life. People have thought of home design as something to buy, or something to start and then end, but I think of design like a vacation. It’s a life experience. Looking back, you will be happier having spent time in a place that you loved.”
People have thought of home design as something to buy, or something to start and end, but I think of design like a vacation. It’s a life experience.
How do you think a Homepolish designer can help you assess your space?
“Design starts by asking the right questions more than anything else. It’s about assessing not only how you want your space to look but also how you want your space to add value to your life. For some, a space is an area for solitary escape. For others, it is a place to showcase. The beauty of meeting an interior designer in person or even face-to-face by video is that a design professional will be able to ask the right questions and take the design to a personal level. That’s reiterated by our designers over and over again. Design isn’t just a matter of aesthetics but a matter of living well.”
Can you speak a little to how a designer can help you budget and plan a project? After all, this is probably the biggest holdup in the design process in the first place.
“It all comes down to a level of expertise. People can often underestimate the time and money needed to complete a space. E-decorating deals mostly in deliverables… a mood board, a shopping list, a timeframe in which everything will be supposedly completed. The client is left on their own to complete the project. But in reality, a shopping list, a mood board, is only 10% of the way through a project. There is so much project management, so much change involved throughout the process that you never really get to an ‘end’ in designing. Designers help you through the constant evolution of a room as you continue to grow, and they guide you to making more thoughtful decisions.”
Designers help you through the constant evolution of a room as you continue to grow, and they guide you to making more thoughtful decisions.
Beyond the level of expertise, what does a designer bring to the table?
“Without a designer, people tend to be more risk-averse. They don’t have anyone there to validate their ideas, so instead they skimp on style, buying pieces they may not actually love simply because they don’t have the confidence to go for the navy blue sofa or the emerald accent chair. They end up buying pieces that are simply “whelming.” The furniture doesn’t excite, and the pieces seem disposable without that personal connection. Sure, they are functional, but the owner doesn’t feel any attachment.”
“People also underinvest when it comes to scale. They go with smaller rugs, or under-furnish homes because of a lack of surety. Rooms go under-utilized. A designer ensures that a space will reach its maximum potential. A lot of people have amazing instincts. There isn’t a right or wrong answer in design, just as there isn’t in fashion. With all of the information out there, people should feel empowered to curate their unique style. A designer is there to aid as a partner and help you follow your instincts. The end result should be a reflection of your passions and loves.”
People should feel empowered to curate their unique style. A designer is there to aid as a partner and help you follow your instincts. The end result should be a reflection of your passions and loves.
What do you think of a designer’s ability to introduce a client to new ideas? Why is it that a designer can introduce nuance to a space more than your typical consumer?
“Nuance comes with experience. A designer should be able to surprise you whether it’s an undiscovered vendor or a clever way of utilizing a corner you never noticed. There’s an artistry that can only come with time and practice.”
Why should someone hire a Homepolish designer as opposed to all the other design options out there?
“Find the right solution for you. Homepolish can be tailored to your budget. If you don’t have money to spend, use Homepolish magazine and the Homepolish Instagram for inspiration and as a resource to start to understand your own style. Homepolish is there for you when you’re ready to start a long-lasting design conversation. We want our clients to indulge in the richness of bespoke design.”
Ready to start the interior design journey? Book a Homepolish designer!