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The Most Costly Mistake People Make Before Hiring an Interior Designer

I'm Erika Ward

Over a decade ago, I exchanged my corporate life in building construction for an opportunity to enhance your personal home via decoration and renovation.  My mission? To help busy professionals make their homes their sanctuaries.

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It’s a fact. When you buy a larger house you need more furniture. Whether it’s a cocktail table, a sofa, or an entire room of furniture–like most people, you want it NOW!

However, your impulse to buy immediately sets you up for the most costly mistake people make before hiring an interior designer.

Clifton Road Sunroom, Erika Ward Interiors

Let’s be honest.

Are you guilty of purchasing new furniture on your own and then asking your interior designer to “make it work?” It seems counterintuitive don’t you think? What you’ve done is perform a portion of his/her job then ask that they pull it together assuming you’ve done it right. This makes my head spin.

Here’s a more common scenario—you’ve painted several rooms in the house but then realize the new wall color(s) relates to nothing else in your house.  It’s a sad day when you realize the mess you’ve made.

Professional help will always cost less than fixing a mistake.

Disappointment sets in when you think of the time and money you wasted doing it yourself. Everything comes to screeching halt when the end result is nothing like your original vision. I’ve had more than my share of emails with these types of design dilemmas. However, the likelihood of  these projects becoming success stories is largely based on whether or not the potential client is willing to let go of their bad choices and embrace the idea of hiring an interior designer.

Collaboration is key.

Education is a large piece of my design process and helps clients to understand what will work and not work in a space. For example, if they purchased a rug that was too small for the space then bringing in a larger rug will instantly help them to see which option is the better choice. Or if the artwork is hung too high or too low, the right adjustments suddenly makes sense. But there are time when things get a little complicated, particularly when dealing with color.

Looking at color is different from seeing color.

I recently took a three-day live course, Specify Color with Confidence Workshop, led and founded by world renowned colorist, Maria Killam. This course has singlehandedly helped me to better explain how I distinguish undertones in colors. In other words, I can help you to see why, out of a hundred of white paint samples, which is best for your home environment. Or show you how to use the color blue to freshen up your 90’s house with pink-beige finishes—at least until you’re ready for a remodel.

pictured with Founder and True Colour Expert, Maria Killam

Once you have a professional that understands color, you quickly realize how the right color not only impacts your paint selection.  It also impacts the color flow path of your furniture, lighting, artwork, rugs, countertop, tiles, and the list goes on.

Here’s the wrap up, Folks.

STOP. Take a deep breath and truthfully evaluate your ability to move forward in making a large investment into your home without professional help. Hire an interior designer to avoid costly mistakes. You wouldn’t fight a court case without an attorney.

The bright side is that your bad decorating choices won’t land you in jail. However, you will feel like a prisoner of ugly color selections without wise counsel.

Call (404) 507-6110 or email us for help today! As certified, true colour experts, we’d love to assist you in making the right selections the first time.

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  1. Maria Killam says:

    Thanks Erika for the mention! It was a delight to have you in the course!! xo Maria



Over a decade ago, I exchanged my corporate life in building construction for an opportunity to enhance your personal home via decoration and renovation. My mission? To help busy professionals make their homes their sanctuaries.

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