That’s a great question. Clients I work with often wonder what a registered interior designer (RID) does that’s different from other designers. It’s complicated so let me simplify and offer some insight so when you decide you need an interior designer for your project, you will be well informed and make a good choice based on your needs.
Anyone can call themselves an interior designer. There are of course certified kitchen and bath designers, interior decorators and stagers who provide interior design services, but to become a registered interior designer requires a formal interior design degree from an accredited institution, a 2 year apprenticeship, and passing the professional examination (similar to the architectural exam) — the National Certification of Interior Design Qualifications (NCIDQ). This is a long process, allowing RIDs to stamp construction drawings for permitting. This is one of the major differences between registered interior designers and other interior designers and decorators. Of course there are other paths that designers can follow but the RID path is the most involved, most technical and requires the most education. A very small percentage of interior designers are actually registered with the state of Texas.
Why is this an important distinction? RIDs can develop construction documents, meet regulations and building codes requirements, and apply sustainable design principles, as well as the manage and coordinate other professional services including mechanical, electrical, plumbing, – all to ensure that people can work, live, and learn in an aesthetically pleasing, and safe environment.
RIDs have mastered the ability to understand people’s behavior in order to create functional and beautiful spaces down to last adorning detail including, furniture, window treatments and art and accessories. RIDs work with architects on new construction, design remodels, relocate plumbing, and electrical, and design kitchen and baths. Just like doctors, lawyers and architects, registered interior designers must complete 12 hours of continuing education every year so they are current on both technical (codes, universal & sustainable design) and design trends.
RIDs can help save you time and money with their extensive knowledge and an array of resources – they are not typically tied to any one product or manufacturer. RIDs are client focused not product focused.
Creating a mindful and appropriate solution for a space for any use takes knowledge and an understanding of human nature that goes beyond the selection of color palettes and furnishings. If you want a collaboration that allows the best possible options for you, hire a registered interior designer for your next design project and you’ll be glad you did.
Cristie Schlosser, principal and owner of Schlosser Design Group, LLC has been practicing interior design for 18 years. She is a professional member of ASID and the 2015-2016 ASID Texas Chapter Dallas Design Community Chair. Cristie has won numerous awards and is a member of NARI, NKBA and USGBC.