*** Before reading this post, PLEASE READ THIS “DISCLAIMER”.  I don’t know if I mentioned this before, but I can be opinionated at times.  THIS is one of those times – continue at your own risk. ***

If you are a designer (or any creative type), do you ever look at other’s work and wish they just hadn’t?  Seriously, have you ever looked at pictures and thought to yourself “why?  WHYYYYYYY?”?  No need to answer this outright (although I  really would love to know), but just think about it.

As a designer (whether of a room, entire home, tablescape, event space, or even system(s)), I strongly feel like professionals MUST bring something to the table that others cannot.  As professionals we are expected to have insight, skills, techniques, insider info, access to deals, something that others do not.  I think we all strive to bring something unique to every project we touch, whether low end (i.e. dollar store finds), mid range (i.e. Ikea hacks), or high end (i.e. boutique and gallery masterpieces).  So when I see a professional project that looks like anyone could have executed, I get a little upset.

Okay, truth… I get offended and a little angry for a minute.  Not simply because of the execution itself, but (bigger picture) because we decorators and designers (especially those of color) have a hard enough time as it is just getting the recognition (and pay) we deserve.  In addition, there are so many resources available through networking and mentoring that there really is no reason (i.e. excuse) for sub-par design; when in doubt, ask a fellow designer.  So when these things happen, I KNOW that if I am thinking a design is not that great or even good, others (potential clients) are likely thinking it too;  AND they are also likely saying to themselves something like “that’s why I’d never pay for someone to come do blah blah blah for me.  I can do that“.

Indeed, if everyone could do it, we would not have fulfilling and successful careers. If there is one thing I have learned, it’s everyone is a designer until it comes time to get to work.


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  1. Your disclaimer caught my attention because of its clear honesty. Great share and I can always appreciate opinions, keeping in mind they are just that. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder who knows someone may look at what you saw as poor effort or quality and see a gem. I am just glad there is a variety of you wonderful designers to choose from 🙂 Keeps those rants coming I loved it. Blessed day

    1. I do totally agree. My grandma has a saying…. “beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and I be holding”. I just would hope that when we all assess, collaborate, and re-assess, honesty will prevail and we all end up with designs (or tweaks) that are eXtraordinary. 😉

  2. I don’t agree with the eye thing, we are not talking beauty we are talking design! If you have studied design 101 you know the basic fundamentals of good design ther is a difference between good taste and design. Design has rules and principles .. Concepts, Form follows function, focal point, line, shape, scale, balance, harmony , rhythm , placement, …ect ect ect

    1. Of course I see your point Celeste. In my response to Mari, I refer more to the person(s) who have not studied design. They just see what they see; and unfortunately it seems like there are some designers/decorators at varying levels that are in that same frame of mind.