Engaging an Interior Designer can certainly seem daunting to many.  First of all, because what do interior designers do? Also, how do you work with an interior designer and finally, how much is an interior designer is going to cost you?

Hiring an interior designer was once only for the rich. In contrast, now it’s quite common for savvy homeowners to hire interior designers to deliver their new home or renovation project and for good reason.  Hiring an interior designer can certainly help save time, money and a lot of headaches.

In this post you’ll learn above all what an interior designer does. Therefore, how an interior designer can help you and most importantly, how much you can expect to pay for an interior designer. I’ll also share my top tips for hiring an interior designer.

What does an Interior Designer do?

An interior designer offers you a professional view on making your space the most functional and beautiful it can be. As a result, an interior designer’s services can enhance your lifestyle and the way you live.

Interior designers can create the colour scheme, pick accessories, furniture and design cabinetry to suit your home and your style. For that reason, it can help you to realise the greatest potential of your home.

Interior Designers have access to a network of manufacturers, trade suppliers and tradespeople.  This means you’ll often end up with a more superior and unique result than undertaking a renovation or new build project on your own.

What can an Interior Designer help me with?

Interior Designers specialise in bespoke design and decoration services and for that reason can be tailored to suit your project and individual need.  Consequently, you can hire an interior designer to help you with;

Design Concepts

Interior schemes for kitchens, bathrooms, individual rooms and whole houses.

Source, Specify & Supply

Fixtures & Finishes including for floors and walls, tiles, tapware and lighting. Schedules and procurement services are available.

Space Planning & Design

Floor plan reviews and computer aided drawings including plans, elevations, perspectives & renderings.

Custom Soft Furnishings

Specifying & supplying fabrics & coordinating production of soft furnishings & window treatments.

Custom Joinery

Collaborating with cabinetmakers / joiners to design kitchens, bathrooms, wardrobes, shelving & built-in storage.

Industry Collaboration

Collaborating with architects, developers and builders to deliver your renovation or new build.

Walk in Pantry Kitchen Renovation Bella Vie Interiors min 1
Design by Bella Vie Interiors

Should I use an interior designer?

The job of an Interior Designer is to make your life easier.  As a result, an Interior Designer will save you time, energy and money by helping to make your renovation or build as hassle free as possible.

Interior designers don’t just consider finishes or furnishings. In contrast, they look at the best way to make a space function for their clients. Consequently, allowing them to see and realise the potential of a space through a well thought through design process.

An Interior Designer provides a service to help clients achieve their renovation or new building project goals with a functional, beautiful and valuable space.

An Interior Designer can create a strategy and concept as a result, providing you with a clear vision for your design or renovation project. Engaging an interior designer can certainly help move your project forward.

How do you work with an Interior Designer?

For a successful and enjoyable project, it’s important to do your research before engaging an Interior Designer to ensure you are working with someone who is going to meet your needs.

You’ll find that Interior Designers offer different services ranging from consulting only for DIYers, to Full-service Interior Design for a turn-key solution.  As Interior Design is such a personalised service, you’ll need to find one that matches your design style, budget and offers the type of services you require.  We are all unique and offer different things!

Ask questions and be comfortable with an Interior Designer before you engage them.  You may find that a complimentary Discovery Call is the best way to get to know an Interior Designer before you meet for a Design Consultation.

Start with a Design Consultation

Whether you intend to hire an Interior Designer for Full-service Interior Design or are running your own project, having the advice of a design professional before you make changes to your space can help avoid costly mistakes down the track, or add value to your property before selling.

A Design Consultation is the launching pad for every new project with Bella Vie Interiors. During a two-hour meeting you’ll discuss the scope of work, your goals for the space and your budget. Consequently, at completion everyone will have a clear understanding of your project requirements.

Priorities and challenges are addressed to solve what can be on the spot and map out your next steps.

A Design Consultation is also an excellent stand-alone resource for those running their own projects.

A Design Consultation is great for;

    • Launching new projects
    • Interior Design advice for your DIY project – ask questions on space planning, furniture layout, interior decoration, colour schemes and window treatments
    • Review and feedback on your building or renovation plans

Full-service Interior Design

Full-service Interior Design is a highly-personalised service designed to give you the beautiful, functional space you’ve always wanted.

Beginning with a Design Consultation, you’ll be guided through an organised step-by-step process to design your space.  We’ll liaise with trades and suppliers, source all items needed, arrange purchasing, installation and styling. As a result, our aim is to plan, prepare and deliver a completed interior space. Above all one that’s ready for you to enjoy your life in and we know you’ll love.

Luxury Full-Service Interior Design is right for you if;

    • You’re a busy, hardworking professional and want a beautiful home, but don’t have the time to shop, design or manage a project – you just want it done
    • You would like to renovate your home and need a trusted team of professionals to guide you through from start to finish
    • You want a beautiful home that enhances the way you live

Full-service Interior Design means an interior designer is by your side from concept to completion. As a result, they’ll create a home that’s unique to you. Your interior designer expertly manages every detail, large and small, so you don’t have to.

Designer On Call

The Designer on Call service is perfect for you if you would like more professional design advice than a 2-hour Design Consultation allows, but aren’t looking to engage an Interior Designer for Full-Service Interior Design.

This flexible approach allows you to use the design expertise of an interior designer in the ways that are best suited to you.

Designer On Call is based on your needs and goals.  Find out more here.

What is the process of interior design?

Interior Designers follow a design process to step a design or renovation process through from commencement to completion.  Consequently, this process varies depending on the scope of works being undertaken.

An Interior Designer can be engaged for a Design Consultation only to work through design dilemmas for a DIY project, similarly they can be engaged for Full-Service Interior Design which covers all aspects of delivering fully completed interiors or anything in between.

Our role as Interior Designers, is to listen to how you and your family want to live, and to communicate that through your newly designed space.  We provide you with clarity, confidence and creativity as we walk you through each step of the process for an easy and enjoyable experience.

The process of interior design working with Bella Vie Interiors looks like this;

Discovery Phase


This phase includes a Design Consultation, where we listen with a view to understanding everything about how you live, and how you want to live.  As a result, knowing your personal, family and social rituals ensures that we can design your home to fit you perfectly. We also discuss the direction of your project, share ideas, and above all decide how best to move forward.

Design Phase


Here we gather and refine ideas to develop a unique design concept for your home. Importantly, we’ll look at maximising liveability and use of space. As a result, we create a drawing package that clearly communicates the design intent across joinery, finishes, fittings and lighting and we present the finalised design including colour palettes, selections and other design features for approval. Decoration is the final step as we carefully select furniture and furnishings to complete the transformation of your space.

Delivery Phase


Finally, a team of trades to carry out the plan we have created together. Everything we’ve planned comes together as we transform your space into a thoughtfully curated design beyond your imagination and expectations. Together we create a home we know you’ll love.

Heritage House Bathroom Renovation Bella Vie Interiors min
Design by Bella Vie Interiors

How much does it cost to hire an interior designer?

For most people, it’s important to understand how much their design fees are going to cost prior to engaging an Interior Designer.

It is also important for an interior designer to understand their client, as the client determines how much money they are willing to spend on materials and labour and for the service of an interior designer.

A good fit between Interior Designer and Client is essential for a successful project.  Consequently, an experienced interior designer will work with their client to understand their budget and expectations.

In Australia, Interior Designers have a number of possible methods of charging fees.  These include;

    • Hourly fee, charged throughout the project as hours are accrued
    • Flat fee, given at the start of a project
    • Percentage of build and/or furniture and furnishing costs
    • A combination of the above

At Bella Vie Interiors, we charge a flat fee for the design phase of a project, then hourly for the procurement and delivery phase. We’ve found this to be the fairest for everyone, so that you’re not paying for any extra hours, and we are compensated for all time spent working on your project.

A guide to our Interior Design Fees;

Design Consultation – $600 for a 2-hour meeting

Designer on Call – $825 for a 5-hour block of professional design time.

Full-Service Interior Design projects start at $5,000 per space.

Furnishing typically starts at $25,000+ per room and includes furniture, soft furnishings, window treatments, floor rugs, art and accessories.  This can vary depending on your budget, design style and expectations.

Kitchens for the projects we work on, typically cost around $50,000 and bathrooms cost around $30,000.  Of course, we work on projects above and below this level, but it’s a good average to work on for mid-level projects.  The design fees for these rooms vary depending on whether you require a design only, design and selections or full-service interior design from start to finish. We work with you to determine your budget and preferences for level of specification required.

The cost of an interior designer is consequently dependent on the size and scope of a project. Interior design services are an investment, as an interior designer will save time, money and heartache.

Interior designers save their clients’ money by:
  1. helping them to achieve their renovation goals
  2. keeping them on schedule and on budget
  3. guiding decisions to achieve a practical and functional interior
  4. access to great resources and
  5. maintaining quality standards and compliance with safety codes.

4 Top Tips for choosing an Interior Designer

If you are looking to hire an interior designer, here are some tips to help you find the best interior designer for you and your project.


Consider your style and consequently look for an interior designer who will complement your project. Likewise, select someone who offers a similar style to your own.


Look at an interior designer’s previous work so you get a feel for the interior designer and their work.


Be realistic about your budget. Above all select an interior designer who works at the appropriate level to suit your budget.


Open and honest communications is essential, therefore don’t be afraid to ask questions or clarify suggestions.

Furthermore, you want the relationship with your interior designer to be one of mutual respect and understanding. You want them to listen to your ideas, but you must also be willing to listen to theirs – enter this relationship with an open mind.

IMG 4562 min


With gaudy colours and a seriously outdated kitchen, this home was in desperate need of a makeover.


It’s hard to believe this 1950’s home has now been totally transformed into this beautifully renovated home with a Hampton’s inspired interior.

Interior Design and Decoration Brisbane - Bella Vie Interiors-min
Design by Bella Vie Interiors

Resources to Help You Get Started

Are you in the planning stages for your new build or renovation project?   We have a number of Free Resources available to help get you started. They are available for download now.

Want to know more about working with Bella Vie Interiors?  Check out our FAQ’s.

Need More Information?

If you have any questions or would like help with your building or renovation projects, feel free to contact us for a no obligation discussion. 

Find out more by scheduling a Discovery Call through the button below.

From complete home transformations to single room renovations, all of our projects are inspired by the relationships we build with our clients.

If you are building or renovating, we’d love to hear from you to discuss creating a beautiful, liveable home for you.

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. Pingback: 10 Reasons Why You Should Hire an Interior Designer | Bella Vie Interiors

  2. Pingback: REVEAL | Modern Living, Classic Style | Bella Vie Interiors

  3. Avatar of 404 Not Found
    404 Not Found

    Touche. Sound arguments. Keep up the amazing effort.

  4. Avatar of Praveen Kumar
    Praveen Kumar

    Informative and insightful post on hiring an interior designer. Thanks for writing and sharing this post with us.

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