For some people, the idea of designing and decorating the space you live in is just too much. That’s why we sat down with Janet Brooks who owns and manages Janet Brooks Design to get the insider scoop of choosing the right interior designer for you.
Tell Us About Janet Brooks Design
Janet Brooks Design is a small design firm, with just four employees, who work hard to create a unique and personal living environment for every one of their clients, focusing on their preferences, budget, and lifestyle. Though we’re based in Arizona, we service surrounding areas and will often travel out of state to work on custom home projects.
I [Janet] began in interior design in Crested Butte, CO over 30 years ago, and had the privilege to work on very high end custom homes at the outset. Crested Butte is a ski resort, so there were many opportunities for not only second homes, but also slopeside condominiums, restaurants and retail spaces. I moved to Arizona in 1987 and began working on high end custom homes here, primarily in North Scottsdale in golf course communities. I have been professionally certified by the NCIDQ (National Council for Interior Design Qualification) and continue to earn CEU’s in additional and advanced studies. We have executed residential and commercial projects in California, Colorado, New Mexico, Texas, Illinois, New York, Florida and Hawaii. We have been the recipient of many awards for Excellence in Design from the industry’s professional association, the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID).
What Does Janet Brooks Design Aim to Do?
We pride ourselves in the creation of a perfect blend of our individual clients’ tastes, their budget, the lifestyle they will live in this home, and the architectural style of the house. No two clients are alike, no two custom homes are alike, and none of our projects are like any others we have completed.
Questions You Should Ask Your Interior Designer:
- Find out if the designer is familiar with, or has done other projects in, the style the homeowner is looking for.
- Get a sense of the price-range of the projects the designer usually works in and make sure that is a fit.
- Ask if the designer is personally involved in each project, or if he/she delegates projects to Jr. Designers
- Get a feeling for the designer’s current project load, and if he/she will have time in the schedule to give your project the time and attention it will require.
- Ask to talk to previous clients about the experience of working with the designer.
Qualities a Qualified Interior Designer Possesses?
An interior designer must have good Organization Skills for all of the details we are responsible for. Intuition in order to instinctively know what our clients want. Flexibility to be able to change direction mid-stream if needed, and of course Creativity, Creativity, Creativity.
What Is Your Design Philosophy?
I believe in the equal importance of Form and Function. Beautiful but impractical doesn’t work for me. I always strive to create the most stunning homes, but with the least amount of maintenance and worry possible.
Ideal Client/Interior Designer Relationship?
It’s all about building trust. An ideal client/designer relationship is strongest and most productive when the client trusts and the designer listens.
How Do You Know What the Client Wants?
I listen as well as I can, to what is said and what isn’t said. I ask a lot of questions, try to get to know them as well as possible, and check in regularly to make sure I am still on track.
How Important is it That Your Designer Sees You Through Start to Finish?
I am a thorough believer in the “team” approach to the design/build process. It’s a learning curve that begins when you first hear the clients’ dreams of what they might want in a home, through being part of designing the spaces (along with the architect), introducing them to various designs, materials and budgets, and watching their reactions. It’s a “getting to know you” experience, that gets richer and richer as time goes on. By the time the project is ready for furnishings, there is unspoken knowledge and communication between clients and designer, and the process is far easier and more efficient than at the outset.
What Services does Janet Brooks Design Provide?
Design development, space planning including furniture layouts, elevation drawings of interior walls including fireplace designs and design of built-ins, kitchen design and material selection, flooring material selections and design layout, detailed tile and stone designs for kitchens and baths, design of custom millwork and doors, selection of plumbing fixtures and appliances, creation of a Specification Manual documenting all designs and material specifications, budget management of all applied materials, furnishings and accessories, selection and design of all furnishings, including custom locally made pieces, area rugs, wall treatments and window treatments.