I often receive emails from young designers-in-the-making...
Last fall I received one from a high school student. Her questions were typical, like... “How do you become an interior designer?” You know—the most common curiosities and such; the ones any aspiring designer would have.
So, because I figure there has to be others out there like her who are wondering the same things, I’ve decided to share my response to her with all of you.
Hi! I've answered your questions down below. Good luck with your decision!
What should I major in college to become an interior designer?
You can major in interior design; those degrees are usually within the Human Science programs at major universities. Some are located in art or architecture.
If you’re wanting to go into commercial design, or work for a large design firm, a CIDA accredited school is where you’ll want to be. You can learn more about CIDA at http://accredit-id.org/. There you’ll find plenty of links to schools that are CIDA accredited.
If I decide to be self-employed, what type of work environment should I expect?
If you're self-employed, you can create whatever work environment you like! If you want to keep a small business, you can work out of your home. Or, if you want employees, and a large space for meetings and a library, you can get a feel for what my environment is like by reading "How I Designed By Dream Interior Design Studio Space".
Do I absolutely have to be GREAT at drawing? (For the record: I’d say I’m average, but I enjoy making art.)
To tell you the truth… I wasn't great. I wasn't even good. And that’s alright! Because you can learn to draw. It's the school's job to teach you. Drawing is a tool for design. The real creativity is in the visualization that goes on in your brain.
Does interior designing involve a great amount of mathematics? (I’m not that great at it.)
No—thank goodness, no. It’s not my forte either. And by the way... knowing mathematics does not mean you know accounting. To understand what your numbers mean you definitely do need some knowledge of accounting—well, that or a good CPA to keep you clear on it all.