How to Become an Interior Decorator

Written by

Beatrice Harrison


August 14, 2014


Interior decorating is an essential aspect of interior design that is becoming increasingly popular for new and remodeled homes and commercial environments. Interior decorators are trained professionals that create attractive and functional spaces and make aesthetic improvements.

What does an interior decorator do?

Interior decorators help their clients create innovative, comfortable, and practical spaces for individuals and organizations. They are involved in a variety of decorating tasks such as selecting paint colors and fabrics, choosing and arranging furniture to improve the appearance and functionality of the area, finding the right flooring, lighting, and window coverings, and choosing attractive accessories. They meet with clients to discuss their needs, preferences, and budget and then they provide their recommendations and suggestions. Interior decorators must always ensure the spaces are safe and functional and meet the client’s expectations. Interior decorators often specialize in residential or commercial interior decorating. Many focus on environmentally friendly and energy saving decorating.

What kind of training does an interior decorator need?

Interior decorators typically need a bachelor degree in interior decorating, art, or other related area. Many colleges and universities and private interior decorating schools offer programs in interior decorating. Coursework often includes courses in modern trends, computer-aided design (CAD), colors and fabrics, furniture design, ethics, architecture, lighting, and furnishings. Many aspiring interior decorators obtain part-time positions and internships to gain practical experience while completing their education. After completion of training programs, most interior decorators complete apprenticeship programs. Some states require interior decorators to be licensed. Licensing requirements vary, but usually include completion of formal training, work experience, and passing a written and practical examination. Some interior decorators gain national certification from the National Council of Interior Design Qualification to remain competitive in the field.

What are the prospects for a career as an interior decorator?

Employment for all interior decorators is projected to increase faster than average for all professions, increasing 19% through 2016 (1). Job growth will be drive by increased interested in interior decorating and remodeling and economic expansion.

Job prospects are expected to be good with keen competition. Interior decorators with formal training and extensive experience will have the best prospects.

How much do interior decorators make?

As of this year, interior decorators with 1 to 4 years experience earned average annual salaries between $26,451 and $48,167. Those with 5 to 9 years experience earned average annual salaries between $21,600 and $61,042 (2).

A career as an interior decorator is an excellent choice for people who have a strong passion for decorating many different indoor environments. Creativity, perseverance, excellent artistic skills, and a good sense of style and visual taste are essential characteristics of interior decorators. Interior decorators must also have excellent communication and interpersonal skills to work with a variety of clients and other professionals. They must manage their time wisely and be able to adapt to the frequent change in styles and trends.

If you are serious about a career in arts and design, check out our list of the best online graphic design schools.

Becoming an Interior Decorator Requires Training, Start Today

Are you serious about becoming an Interior Decorator?  Then you need to get the required skills and training to do it! To start your new career, first you must decide what school you want to enroll in, so you need to gather info about potential schools. Use the College Mouse Degree Search tool to find the right course and college for you, and get started towards your new dream job today! If you want more personalized assistance, call (888) 389-7996 TOLL FREE to speak with a college advisor, who will help you find the best college for you. After you sign up for your course, make sure you fill out and submit the FAFSA so you can take advantage of any financial aid currently available to you!

Written by:  Beatrice Harrison

Educated at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, Beatrice Harrison has extensive professional experience in career counseling, having helped a growing number of job seekers find fulfilling and meaningful careers in a variety of fields and disciplines.

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