It's great that we all have different interests and ideas about how we live, it creates a well balanced society. The hardest part about this as an interior designer is putting aside your interests and ideas and getting into the client's headspace.
So here are some tips on how to work with quirky interiors.
- Show interest and get an understanding of how they live in their space.
- Find out what are the really important things in their interior that need to be retained and what is surplus to requirements, items put there because they had no where else to put them.
- Gauge how far they are willing to embrace new concepts and ideas, show them a few magazines and get a feel for what they like. Most people don't like change, so you have a privilege that they have asked you to do it for them, it is not an easy job. Take you time, this front end of a client designer relationship is critical.
- Go for a shopping excursion and get a feel for what catches their eye, you will soon start to see a pattern. You may not agree with their style and quirky ideas, but you have the skills to bring it together and make to look good and be functional.
- If skulls and crossbones aren't your thing, pretend that you are a set designer for a movie or play and create a challenge for yourself. I recently watched a movie where the whole house was full of American Indian paraphernalia, not to my taste, and yes it was quirky but edgy in a disturbing way!
- The main thing to remember is that you can design with a style, theme or period but you still need to make it a functional home. Take ideas and make them work , use period furniture and upholster it with a modern version of the fabrics of the period. Keep the room simple in design (like and art gallery) and decorate with the feature pieces. Make the quirky collections a focal point without distraction.
- Some people love to be surrounded in bright colors, this you may find quirky, but for some it is their way of expressing their personalities, bright yellows and bold reds, with a splash of purple. You can do this in a home if you don't mix them all in one space, make them transition from one area to another. Keep the decoration simple so it doesn't compete with the color.
I guess my take on entering other people's homes is that they are their sanctuaries and we are lucky to be given the opportunity to take a look at their lives and enhance their style and make the interior environment a more harmonious place to live no matter what form the decoration takes.
So take on the challenge, ensure you a gracious and sympathetic to their needs and you will find taking yourself out of your own comfort zone may be just what you need to improve your interior design skills.