Illustration by Lumen Bigott
With so many different options in the region, it can be difficult to determine how to choose an interior designer in Dubai. We’ve put together some of the key things to consider when choosing the right creative team to bring your space to life: Portfolio, Personality, Process and Pricing…
When you are considering how to choose an interior designer in Dubai, the first and perhaps most obvious thing to look at is the portfolio of projects the agency or designer has worked on. Their projects will be visible on the company website so take some time to search for and scroll through the credentials of the company. Ideally, the designer will demonstrate projects related directly to your requirements in which case it will be easy to envisage your compatibility on a project. At Brand Creative, a lot of our clients have seen our work for salons, F&B or retail and are confident that we are innovative and experienced in this area.
Mauzan Luxury Retail Interior, Al Ain
Conversely, if there are a lack of solid examples that are similar to your vision or industry, look at the way the designer approaches their projects. For example, do they have a certain signature style where each project looks the same or do they begin each project with completely new ideas? This will indicate the ability of the designer to come up with an original concept that is a unique and considered response to your brief.
Dunk n’ Dip Chocolate Café, KSA
When we first met the client for chocolate café Dunk & Dip, they were encouraged by the variety in our portfolio. The client was intrigued not only by our F&B work , but also the projects that demonstrated our imaginative thinking, such as Al Jalila Children’s Hospital. Through looking at the variety of creative projects and seeing our versatility, they were confident that we would create an exceptional design for the launch of their brand in Saudi Arabia.
Al Jalila Children’s Hospital, Dubai
Finalist in Commercial Interior Design Concept of the Year 2018
Once you chose an interior designer in Dubai you are entering a business relationship in which you will be spending a lot of time interacting with one another. As such, it is important that you not only trust the process of the designer but you also feel comfortable in their company. Understand who it is you will be communicating with throughout and make sure that you can establish a good, trusted working relationship from the beginning.
Brand Creative Dubai team
When somebody gets in touch at Brand Creative, we always encourage an initial meeting where we invite the potential client to see our studio, meet the members of the team and have a chat about how we can collaborate.
During the first meeting with an agency, do not be afraid to ask how their design process works. Each company will have a different procedure and it is always a good idea to have an understanding of this whilst you are in the selection process.
Brand Creative Studio Interior, Dubai
At Brand Creative, interiors projects begin with a research-focused strategy phase that informs our design process and ensures that the creative outcome fits the criteria on every level. Subsequently, we present the client with two different moodboards where the client can discuss their visual preferences and choose a direction to take. Only then will the designers begin the creative process, making sure that the client has been involved with the visual development from the very beginning.
The topic of pricing can be daunting as there is such a wide variety in the cost of interior design in Dubai. On beginning any type of project, it is important to plan your allocated costs beforehand to enable you to chose a company that is compatible with your budget. Fee proposals are usually submitted once the client has had a meeting with the design agency and discussed the brief and scope of their project.
Design fees vary for a number of reasons such as the size of the company, the success of their projects and the number of awards they have won. It is not simply a case of ‘the more expensive, the better’ or ‘go with the cheapest’, but more an overall consideration of what the agency offers within their fees. Be sure to select your designer based on an overall analysis of their abilities, credibility and offerings.
Carla on the Panel at Index 2018
Once you have selected your creative team, it is hugely beneficial to be transparent about the monetary allocation for fit out, furniture and finishes, as this will enable your designers to work towards a concept that will be in keeping with your requirements both creatively and financially.
Our Creative Director Carla covered the topic of “Delivering Excellence on a Budget” at the 2018 Index Exhibition Design Talks panel discussion, speaking amongst other industry leaders about the best way to navigate cost engineering in a design project. At Brand Creative we have worked on projects on both end of the spectrum, and work with our clients openly to ensure that their requirements are met in every aspect, beyond the visuals alone.
The process of choosing an interior designer in Dubai can appear complicated, but if you go into the process prepared it will be a positive experience. Take time to identify the key things you expect from a designer, determine your project requirements, do your research and go out and find the creative team who will do your project justice.
“How to Choose an Interior Designer in Dubai” by Helen Ampen, Brand Strategist at Brand Creative