Tips For Writing An Interior Design Brief

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On my last post I stated the importance of attending an Interior design school so if you have not read that you should check it out, however today I will be talking to you about an important topic that it at core of achieving an aesthetically pleasing Interior Design Project especially when you have a highly demanding client. Let’s understand what interior design brief is……

An Interior design brief is a written summary of a design project that is being planned between the interior designer and the client. Let’s just put it this way, it is the foundation of any interior design project and it provides structure, guidance and direction to your work. Aside this stated roles it performs, you actually need it when dealing with amazing Clients (you know what I mean…Lol) …. I have worked with some Clients and O my, this brief right here has saved me a lot of time…Smiling, so you really want to read to the end to avoid some challenges when dealing with you Clients….

Nigerians can be extra so when gathering information from a client especially in lagos, you should start by documenting the most important objectives. I will be dropping some of the tips I give my students at Simplinteriors school of Interior Design and Entrepreneurship which is One of the Best Interior Design School in Lagos –Nigeria, so you can also benefit from this tips. When getting your brief from your clients you need to get information around design or architectural features, preferred furnishings and finishes. Take this from me with my over twelve years as professional Interior Designer the design brief needs to be very detailed so as to not raise ambiguity later on in the project (Save yourself that stress).

Both Parties must be Specific, I say this because the essence of the Brief to help each party realize the desired results of the project. The role of the interior designer is to have a very detailed design brief for the project.  Once you have a clear and precise design brief, you must infuse the professionalism in you, this means sharing your inspiration as well to inspire your client.

As an interior designer you are also tasked with choosing a style or design approach for the project according to the Interest of your Client.  This style must meet the client’s requirements so therefore, the better you know your client’s needs, the better you will be able to produce something that they are completely happy about.

Another Important point here is as the Interior Designer you have to be creative. When you handle clients you need to present yourself as a master in your field. Some clients might be saying they want this or that but you are in a position to give them a better view as to why some options might not be right and providing a better option. You are the designer hence you be creative and also carry out the administrative part of the project and manage it in a timely fashion.

One profound aspect I will not leave out of the post is the fact that Design Briefs helps with accountability. Yes, at Simplinteriors school of Interior design and Entrepreneurship students understand the essence of accountability when it comes to dealing with clients. It just helps you to be more accountable through the design process and execution. The fact still remains that briefs usually change over time and are adjusted as the project goes on however it will be on record that at the beginning of the project this was the information given by the clients on what they wanted to achieve with the project. At this point am sure it is getting clearer to you. For me I call it a MAJOR BLUEPRINT, because it informs your decisions and guides the overall workflow of your project, from conception to completion.

 Like I tell my students Make notes on your design briefs once you start the project. Keep your proposal along with it, as well as other important documents. Highlight the important parts of each, or make notes in the margins. Don’t just look it over at the beginning and then file it away somewhere. Effectively using a design brief throughout the process can result in a much better end result.

Now let’s move on to What to Include in an Interior Design Brief.

1.Define the vision of the Project: The first thing to define is why the project is happening. You should ask questions like… What problem is this project trying to solve? Let me give you an example here, the interior Design brief you will collect for a Hospital cannot be the same with a Night Club (I think that says it all). Spend time with your client, have them lead you through the vision in their own words? Is this a redesign or reworking of an existing site, or is it a completely new design? What is the overall vision for the space you are creating? What do you want the space to feel like? What do you want the space look like? What sparked the need to create this space? What other spaces inspire you? Do you have examples of other spaces that deliver on just what you wish to see in this space? Do you have a style and theme in mind? What are the mandatories for this space? What are the absolute NO’s? This information can help you determine the overall style for the project.

You see all of these tips am giving you for free, this is just 1/3 percent you will learn in the top interior design training school in Lagos-Nigeria. Let’s go on…..

2.Project overview

  When I tell you this is also one of the most important path you should not leave out. A project overview section of your brief should provide a clear and concise description of your design project. It should cover the what and why behind your project. Though some projects are more in-depth than others. In your Interior Design journey, you will meet some Clients that want a completely custom solution to their spaces while others just want you as the Interior Designer to adapt an existing template they already have in mind.

3.Available Accessories/Materials:

For some Clients they already have some of the materials or accessories needed for the project, while for other you will have to get them from the beginning of the project to the End. It is important to have proper record of what is readily available so you are aware of the necessary materials to be made available during the execution of the Interior Design Project.

4.Budget: Now we are here, I know you have been waiting for this part…LOL. Lets be honest Budget can be a touchy subject for some clients. Some clients feel like if they share their budget with you before you give them a quote, you’ll overcharge them. Other feel you will charge them the maximum amount for the least amount of work while this next set of clients want you to perform magic on a ridiculous Budget…LOL. What some Clients fail to understand if the fact that when you as the Interior Designer have the knowledge of their budget it is easier tailor your services to give them the most benefit for their money. Well let me just tell you the fact here you really need to stress this to your clients, but trust me you will definitely meet some resistance from some clients



This has to do with time constraints. You will meet Some clients that have no idea how long it takes to design, they don’t understand that good design takes time, and that it’s not just a matter of creating a pretty picture, while other clients have certain deadlines that they want to meet.

N.B: Try and confirm why they want things to fit within a certain period of time and if that schedule is flexible. It’s easier work with clients while knowing their restrictions upfront, you will form a better working relationship and plenty of repeat and referral business which is a very important marketing strategy for your business.

To learn more and take your passion for interior design to the next level, register for the ten weeks’ interior design training programme and become a professional Interior Designer in few months.

For more information visit or fill out the form or you can visit the training centre at 71 Falolu street off akerele surulere –Lagos.



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