This sounds more professional than it really is, most things in interior decorating can be broken down into processes. Then you can follow simple step by step methods to achieve them. This is how we achieve the client brief.
- List up all the project's details, address, number of rooms, number of family members, pets, lifestyle (professional, family orientated, teenagers with lots of friends, babies, loads of pets, retired and relaxed, home office etc) current style of the house, the type of construction, the budget, the overall content of
the project (ie renovate the kitchen and bathrooms).
- Take one item at a time and expand on them. For example Family Members - how many? What ages? What are their needs? This is especially important for the bathroom area - privacy, showers, baths, double basins, additional toilets etc. Current Style of the house, if it is a 1960's bungalow, what kind of style are you wanting to portray in the home? Is the whole house going to be updated eventually or simply the kitchen and bathrooms? Look for long term plans as well as present as these can effect the look of the whole house if it doesn't flow cohesively. The type of construction, this is vitally important for structural purposes, for example you may want to put granite bench tops in the kitchen, these are extremely heavy and if you had a timber framed floor would need additional engineering support for the floor, the same applies if you wanted to add marble to the bathroom floor on the first storey, again very heavy.
- The Budget - this is a major part of the brief, a good designer brings their project in on budget, this keeps everyone happy! It means that when you do your initial planning you are realistic as to what materials, fittings and fixtures are affordable, and you can set a priority list and use it to get the best quality project for your money.
- The Overall Changes - in other words, the scope of work. What do you want to do with your renovations. Is it simply a repaint with new carpet, drapes and furniture or more extensive construction and cabinetry work involved. List up what you want to achieve, what changes are required and to what rooms, what contractors will be involved and their input. This all helps when you want to define your budget and start prioritizing.
- Lifestyle - this is important when it comes to finding the right style of decoration. You need to find out how the occupiers of the home work on a daily basis. It is no use having a stark white kitchen with clean sleek horizontal surfaces when you have toddlers and babies and you spend all day making food for them. Getting everything out and putting it away again and again. You need something with user friendly appliance storage, easy access and a more softened look if you are going to spend most of the day in the kitchen. Same thing for a mass of teenagers you would need to allow a large space for a huge refrigerator as they will also eat all day!
- Then the most important part - the aesthetics! What style or look you or your client wants to achieve. This can also be the most difficult as it is the creative side of decorating. All the rest has been "accounting" lists and numbers, vitally important to any project but not the fun side of decorating that we all enjoy.