• 14 June 2016

Creating your internal space

Creating your internal space

Building a new home is exciting.  It can also be daunting if you don’t have the right tools to feel confident in your design decisions.  At Green Earth Homes, we feel that your interiors are just as important as the building envelope.  One of the BEST parts about building is that it’s an opportunity to tailor your space to how you like it to function.  You are purchasing a brand new, never been lived in home that has been built to YOUR specifications, not someone else’s.  We all live differently from one another.  It’s important to understand what your requirements and motivations are in a new home – and I can help!

Something I learned while studying at University was this:  Architects design from the outside IN, Industrial Designers design from the person OUT and interior designers design from the INSIDE out. 

Here’s a little diagram:

Whilst understanding this basic principle of the designer’s strategy, you will come to realise how I am going to be working with you.  To an interior designer, the flow and functionality of the floor plan and the details of the interior space are the most important aspects of the home.  I will focus primarily on the areas that are of constant use like the kitchen and bathrooms.

When planning your home, pay close attention to how you want to feel in each area of the home because YOU are the most important item.  Not the lamp or sofa – but you.  A house is just an empty building without occupants.  It’s our job to ensure you want to occupy your home for years to come.   It’s also our job to ensure that you can stay in your home as your lifestyle changes.  If there are physical injuries or ailments to consider, let me know.  I can design in some strategies to make ageing in your home seamless and invisible. 

When building your new home, it’s also important to consider whether you’ll be purchasing new furniture or working with what you have.  If we’re working with existing pieces, take some photos!  Bring your photos to the appointment and we will ensure that they’ll fit with the new environment.  Also, please take photos of some of your artwork or heirlooms.  These items are your story and they need to be told.

Whenever I meet with clients for the selections appointment, I first like to get a ‘concept’ image.  This is just one image of a room, a piece of art, or an item of furniture that speaks to them.  It’s the motivation for the palette we’ll create. Often the image comes from Pinterest or Houzz. Or perhaps it’s a magazine clipping you’ve been carrying for years.  We then start extracting the ‘essence’ of the image and translating it into materials.  The floor is always the best place to start as it’s the area we will literally build on.  You need to be confident that the colour, the material and the feel of the floor will be something you will be happy with 10 years later.

After we’ve chosen the floor we then start adding more and more layers; the tiles, the stone, the joinery colours – until the palette starts to tell the story of the occupants.  The colours of the exterior follow. We will start to add texture and contrast.  By now you’ll have a very good sense of how your home is going to feel inside and out.  And please don’t be afraid to say that you cannot visualise the space.  Many can’t.  I’ve had clients that required full cardboard mock – ups of an office because they could not ‘see’ where their desk would be.  Everyone’s brain works differently. 

I will never force my style or taste on any client.  I will work with what brings a client joy.  I do however, clearly understand the principles and elements of design and will guide you towards a solution that will work for your style.  Every trend and every style is still governed by design principles and they need to be applied to every job.

Remember to always trust your instinct.   If you can’t trust your instinct, trust your designer!

Jennifer Ramey, Qualified Interior Designer B.A.D.I.D.

Interior Designer for Green Earth Homes