What is an Interior Design Assistant?

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

An interior design assistant is an employee of an interior designer or interior design firm who provides support services. Some people use such positions as part of their training, to gain valuable experience when can be used when they work as interior designers, while others enjoy the support aspect of the interior design field, and are career assistants. To become an interior design assistant, someone usually needs some experience and training in the field, and some schools and colleges offer degrees or certificates to interior design assistants which can be used to increase employability.

Interior design assistants may be responsible for choosing smaller furniture pieces to compliment a design.
Interior design assistants may be responsible for choosing smaller furniture pieces to compliment a design.

Interior design assistants often travel with their employers or independently. They may take notes for interior designers, measure spaces, and gather information about job sites. They also work with vendors of products, shopping for specific products requested by an interior designer, researching product options, and placing custom orders for special products. Interior design assistants usually have an excellent knowledge of vendors, and establish good relationships with local vendors of products and services related to interior design, ranging from electricians to paint stores.

Interior design assistants can specialized in subfields of design, such as decorating for offices.
Interior design assistants can specialized in subfields of design, such as decorating for offices.

An interior design assistant may not be involved in the creative process, but he or she can definitely be involved in the development of renderings and presentations. Some designers welcome creative input from their assistants, especially in cases where an assistant is in training to become an interior designer, while others do not appreciate input or suggestions. Like interior designers, interior design assistants can also specialize in subfields of interior design, such as decorating for restaurants, interior design in offices, or staging homes for sale by real estate agents.

Like other assistants, an interior design assistant can be involved in scheduling, establishing a schedule and making appointments for an interior designer. They can also order supplies for the office in addition to obtaining supplies for specific jobs, and they may be responsible for tasks like arranging transportation, setting up meeting rooms for presentations, and supervising work on the site where the design is taking place.

Many interior design firms hire multiple interior design assistants who may be assigned to specific designers or shared by the members of the firm. Individual interior designers may hire on one or more assistants as their practice expands and they find that they need assistance with administrative tasks and the fine details of daily work. When evaluating job opportunities, interior design assistants may want to consider the amount of pay offered, available benefits, opportunities to work with famous designers, and the possibilities for professional advancement for someone in an interior design assistant position.

Event planners may consult with interior design assistants on decorations.
Event planners may consult with interior design assistants on decorations.
Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a wiseGEEK researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

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