ABOUT THE AUTHOR | Mariana Alvelo is an Interior Designer at Álvarez-Díaz & Villalón.
We shared 5 things about architecture you should learn, now it’s time to learn about interior design!
Interior design is a branch of environmental design that focuses on the layout and form of interior spaces within buildings. It is a transformative tool that facilitates the betterment of individuals, businesses, and society when combined with conscious architecture or by itself. Here’s what we can learn about interior design and the effect it has on human beings.
1. We can change behavior and thought processes through the successful implementation of interior design strategies.
Design elements combined with consideration to the user’s needs and the context surrounding them, can help implement new routines and improve existing ones. Through the conscious selection of materials and colors, strategic positioning of carefully chosen light fixtures, and the layout of furniture pieces and partitions inside a room, an interior designer can invite and suggest how individuals behave, circulate and socialize in that space. An interior design’s ability to modify behavior can be particularly important when it’s the setting for raising children at home, treating patients at a medical facility, or training new employees at a restaurant, for example.
2. The physical space that comprises a store, an office, a hotel, or a home should be a reflection of the values of those who inhabit it.
Interior design is a tool that can align the shared values of the users with the identity of the space they inhabit. In other words, interior design is what makes an interior space look like the brand they represent and the users they want to attract. For example, in our El Estudio project, we used light, materials, space planning, and visual branding to communicate the yoga studio’s values. El Estudio’s design conveys the desire to make guests feel welcome but contained, relaxed but at the same time energized, and detached yet aware that you are a part of a larger community.
Interior design can have that same effect on a home. Comfortable furniture pieces, controllable access to sunlight, and welcoming textures can create an inviting and energized space for family gatherings or a cozy and subdued area for naps. The design possibilities are endless, and the end result can certainly be beneficial for a family (in a home) or a company (in a business).
3. Interior design is a respectable profession that requires a college degree and a license to practice.
To be adequately prepared to provide purposeful and responsible solutions to our clients, interior designers need to be educated, trained, and licensed in this profession. Contrary to popular belief, it is not legal to identify as an interior designer without a license to do so. When sourcing an interior designer for your next project, make sure that they are a registered professional. All interior designers at AD&V are licensed and ready to provide creative, sustainable, and inspiring design solutions.
4. Interior design is a tool that eases accessibility for all individuals.
The design of any product or environment, can either promote or hinder equitable participation of people, regardless of gender, age, class, or physical movability. An interior designer has the legal obligation to follow building codes and regulations. They also have the ethical responsibility to go the extra mile and ensure that their design decisions not only comply with the minimum requirements but actively pursue equal participation of the diverse inhabitants of a space. As a profession that is part of a society that is trying to guarantee equality for all individuals, interior design has a considerable role in this fight. At AD&V, we employ universal design principles.
5. Interior spaces, along with the details that encompass their design, are the actual settings for the milestones that happen indoors.
Everything that has ever happened indoors has been positively or negatively affected by design elements such as furniture, colors, lighting, space layout, and acoustics. These elements, along with the physical sensations and emotions that accompany them, construct our memories of our homes, school classrooms, hospital rooms, and concert arenas: the settings of memorable past life events. Interior design has been consistently present in our lives, whether we are aware of it or not. Consciously designing these spaces allows us to shape and make them as enjoyable, beautiful, and functional as we need to have more enjoyable memories, work better, and be better.
Interior design can affect the way we live for the better. It can modify behavior, make spaces more inviting, improve our quality of life, facilitate ease of use for all, and convey what we believe as individuals. Next time you inhabit an interior space, be conscious of the immense value and beneficial power its design has on us as human beings.