Interior designers draw upon their artistic sensibilities and understanding of architecture, engineering, and construction to translate the desires of their clients into pleasant interior spaces that observe building codes, ease the flow of traffic through rooms, and perform efficiently.
What You Should Know About Interior Design Careers
Most interior designers tend to specialize in one particular area such as residential or commercial spaces, or even in a particular subsection--hotels, for instance. Although most people know that interior designers make decisions about flooring, window coverings, cabinetry, lighting, wall coverings, or furniture, you may not realize that, as an interior designer, you are likely to design or even make some of these items yourself. This means you need extensive knowledge about materials and associated costs. Understanding building codes, engineering or architecture terminology, air quality, ergonomics, and green materials and practices is also extremely important.
Interior Design Training and Education
Jobs are highly sought after, making interior design a very competitive field. You need a college degree--preferably a four-year interior design degree. Follow that with an apprenticeship of up to three years and you can qualify to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) licensing exam--the license of choice among employers.
Interior Design Salary and Career Outlook
Interior design jobs should grow rapidly in the near future according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. As baby boomers age, they demand more functional, safer interior spaces, which, coupled with growth in the number of healthcare facilities, will increasingly draw on the services of interior designers. Growth is projected to be 19 percent through 2018, and will be particularly high for those with training in ergonomics or green interior design. The median annual salary for interior designers in May 2008 was $44,950.