“I Use Antlers In All Of My Decorating”—Interior Design Is More Than Prettying Things Up

by Randy Murray on August 5, 2013

I am surprised at how many people who strongly believe that the design of their technology products, software, and applications are of vital importance and yet don’t seem to care at all about the places where they live and work. They trumpet the importance of Product Design, but seem to think that Interior Design is fluff, just about the surfaces of things, and completely unimportant.

I’ve grown to understand just how important design is in all aspects of life. Interior design is not simply decorating. It is creating spaces that help shape one’s mood and mental states. It is of vital importance.

We recently remodeled a substantial portion of our home. We gutted the master bedroom, bath, and closet, taking these spaces down to the stud walls and even removed the ceilings and raised them. It was a long and arduous process, not to mention expensive. But it’s in these last few weeks after the final coats of paint were applied and all construction finished, that I’ve really seen the difference that interior design can make. Our designer was part of the overall contractor team and she helped us make the choices about the physical structure of the rooms. And yes, she helped us to select paint colors and fabrics.

But she also helped us reconfigure how we used the room, what furniture we would use (some existing, some new), and how to light the spaces. The result is amazing. Our bedroom, a place we’ve used for almost 20 years, is now a retreat. It may also be one of the best places on earth to take a nap (although I took a glorious nap on the shore of Loch Ness a year ago and that was pretty sweet, too).

Our home theater looks and functions incredibly well, not because of the surface, but because everything in the room has a purpose and the design extends into the bones of the room.

Interior design isn’t about the surface of a space. It’s not just about how it looks. It’s about how a space is used and how you want people who use the space to feel. It takes thought and expertise, just like designing a great software app takes specific skills and experience.

My advice for you: find an interior designer who can work with you on your spaces of your home and office. You can also study interior design in magazines, books, and on TV to do it yourself. And, of course, the best way to learn about great interior design is to go to places with great design and experience them for yourself. Because that’s what it’s all about: not looking at pictures of how a place looks, but being there and seeing how it feels to be in the space.

Yes, Gaston (in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast) may be a bit over the top, but I get what he’s going for, even if my wife prohibits antlers in the bedroom.

The “I Use Antlers In All Of My Decorating”—Interior Design Is More Than Prettying Things Up by Randy Murray, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

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