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  • Writer's pictureAnna Roberts

What to expect when signing up to an Interior Design Course

Welcome Back! I have had such a positive response to my first blog that I wanted to start off by saying a huge thank you to everyone who read it. It is very nerve wrecking to put yourself out there so thank you for all your positivity.

As promised at the end of my last blog, todays one is all about my experience on my course at the British Academy of Interior Design and how I chose to specialise in curtains, blinds and soft furnishings.

I always knew that I would have the option to join my family business. However, the reason I chose to study before joining was because I wanted to work towards my new career and not just have it handed to me on a plate without any real knowledge or experience. I wanted to have credibility behind me but also the option to expand the business in the future to be able to provide more services alongside the soft furnishings and window treatments.

Before embarking on my chosen course, I did a lot of research on the various options that would be available to me. After careful consideration I decided to enrol onto the Diploma in Interior Design Home Study Course at the British Academy of Interior Design. A home study course was preferable for me to be able to fit studying around a busy family life and the content provided me with all the knowledge and experience that I believed would enable me to launch a new career.

So in September 2016 I was all signed up & good to go! Although the course material was available from the start, the assignments were only released two at a time. As much as I wanted to be able to see what I would be up against throughout the whole course, it was beneficial not to get overwhelmed at the same time. Believe me even access to two assignments at a time could get overwhelming on occasion!

In total I completed 10 assignments, ranging from site surveys & hand drawn technical drawings, spatial planning, sample boards, sketch books, building a database of materials and technical details, CAD, axonometric drawings, history of interior design from Ancient Greece & Rome to 20th Century design, lighting and electrical specifications. I am not going to lie, it was hard work returning to studying after nearly 20 years! There were a lot of very late nights and early mornings but part of the reason for that was because I was enjoying what I was doing.

My course gave me a great insight into the life of an Interior Designer and along the way I enlisted friends to help me by pretending to be clients so that I could take a brief from them or do a site survey of one of their rooms. This really enabled me to tie in real life experiences with the made up scenarios that were provided in the assignments.

After two years of studying I finally graduated with a Distinction! I think my husband and children were very relieved when it all came to an end. Our dining table could revert back to being a dining table again instead of having books, drawing boards & samples all over it. Evenings and weekends became our own again as I no longer needed to be constantly studying. It was pretty full on during those couple of years.

After a break over the summer it then became decision time, would I start my own business or join the family business & specialise in curtains, blinds & soft furnishings? Whilst I enjoy whole interior design projects, my real love and passion is for textiles and how they can transform a room. Also, the prospect of being able to carry on our family business for at least another generation was all too tempting. I am a sentimental sort and it really does fill me with great honour and pride to be able to do this. As a business that was started by my Grandfather 70 years ago, evolved over the years and formed into its current business, I couldn’t see it just stop when my parents come to retire. I am looking forward to seeing how the business will evolve during my time with the additional interior design services that I am now able to offer.

Thank you for taking the time to read this blog. I hope that you have enjoyed it.

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