from the HIVE | Science vs. Magic
There is a BIG BIG difference between an Interior Designer and an Interior Stylist or Decorator (which is apparently a super dated word, whatever.) If you’ve never read my take on it, here it is as seen in our FAQ section:
Are you an Interior Designer or an Interior Decorator? What is the difference?
I am a Certified Interior Decorator. I specialize in the decorative finishes, accessories, color schemes and fabric/textile selections within a space, among other things. While I did receive a Professional Certification through CID International, as part of a personal and professional goal, in the State of Florida, you cannot legally call yourself an Interior Designer without the proper schooling, certification, licensing and credentials. In short, Interior Designers are more closely related to Interior Architects and Architectural/Technical skills, focusing on the functionality of a space as it pertains to its inhabitants. They are well versed in building codes and structural considerations and are licensed through a governing organization like ASID, as opposed to, Decorators who work strictly with the aesthetic and decorative components of an Interior. Decorators capture the personality and style of the residents and express it in their space. Many people use the terms interchangeably, but incorrectly, since there are some subtle and not so subtle differences between the two. The type of Professional you will need to hire for your project heavily depends on the Scope of Work and what the job entails.
In no way am I here to try and convince anyone that one is more important than the other. I actually believe both are essential to make the most out of your space, but that ultimately what it really boils down to is what exactly your project needs are. It is true that a well designed space can stand on its’ own merits and should, the oohs and ahhs of gorgeous architecture, a ceiling detail, windows, columns and a perfect layout are undeniable. The same power exists, though, in the tiny moments, the thoughtful details and the sublime vignettes as seen through the lens of a camera or experienced in person. These are the awww’s and aha’s that your heart can actually “feel.” What helps make a space truly come to life.
The level of expertise, training and technical skills a licensed, certified and credentialed Interior Designer has cannot be compared to someone who did not go through the rigorous curriculum of earning a degree. But, style, an eye for detail, and a way of putting the smaller things together through the use of color, texture, accessories, and scale does not come automatically to someone simply because they went to school for it either. Nor is it exclusive. There are many talented and capable design professionals, Stylists + Decorators included, whom’s innate flair, is a combination of instinct, preparation, dedication, and a serious respect for the craft and industry. Many of whom have also gone through their own technical criteria for accreditation. Their efforts cannot be overlooked!
“Interior Designers are scientists, Stylists are magicians.” - Vanessa Colyer Tay
It wasn’t until recently, when a close friend commented to me “it takes a true talent to pull off a magic trick like that,” that I understood the importance of each of our roles and how others view those roles. I loved it- it was the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me and I will treasure this small epiphany forever. As these two sentiments echo one another, I too realized, that both, the scientist and the magician, allow us (you, the public, whomever) to marvel at the unbelievable, while giving us something to believe in. While, aesthetics is at the center of it all and the driving force. We are quickly reminded that the true power of the experience, what makes a space memorable, lies in the wild, and if done really well, the subtle combination of the two- Science + Magic!