If you have never renovated before, or never worked with an interior designer, it can seem like a daunting (and lengthy) process in the beginning. There are so many decisions to be made and details to consider. Hiring a professional to help you should reduce some of that stress, and give you confidence in the choices being made. Yes, there is certain amount of creativity involved, but to be honest its also just as much about a systematic process as it is the pretty stuff. 

In an effort to clear up any questions clients have about working with Annie Bowen Design I recently put together some information on how we get from an initial phone call to completed project. Whether it’s a full renovation required, or a small interior decorating job, the steps are the same.

1. Initial meeting.

This is an appointment where we get to know each other and make sure we are a good fit. Together we view your home and discuss what you hope to achieve. The initial consultation helps to develop a clearly defined project brief and is the first step in the design process.

Following this meeting we are able to finalise a detailed estimate of design fees based on your specific requirements. You will receive terms and conditions associated with engaging Annie Bowen Design, as well as deposit and payment terms.

2. Trade Day.

To kick off the project we schedule a day to review your existing home in as much detail as possible. Appropriate trades join us on this day, allowing us to work through any practical considerations before we begin the design process.

Trade day allows us to further develop the brief and confirm a detailed scope of works for the project.

If your job is purely decorating, this day becomes a site review day where we measure the rooms, windows and furniture to be retained.

3. Design.

We are now ready to begin planning and designing your home. This can seem like a lengthy process but it’s important we approach this stage in a systematic and detailed way.

We consider the colour palette, floor plan, kitchen and bathroom design, fixtures & fittings, flooring, window treatments, furniture, rugs, artwork and more.

4. Documentation.

Floor plans and elevations are drawn, and (where required) we also put together realistic 3D mockups of the rooms.

Proposals are completed for all fittings, fixtures, furnishing and décor items chosen for your home, with descriptions, measurements and pricing.

All appropriate samples are collated, and a presentation document is ready for our next meeting.

Detailed schedules are prepared for all paint colours, finishes, joinery, etc.


5. Tender.

If you are renovating, your chosen builder(s) will receive floor plans, elevations and schedules outlining all colours, finishes, fixtures and fittings. This information allows the trades to quote accurately for the job.

We respond to any questions from the trades, attend additional site meetings where required, and work with you to review pricing as it comes in, helping you through the process of engaging a builder that suits your requirements.


6. Procurement.

Once you have chosen your builder, we coordinate the procurement process, ordering any required fixtures, fittings, furniture etc via our trade contacts. Delivery time frames and delivery fees, as well as deposit conditions, are confirmed at this stage.

7. Design Management.

With contractors now on site the changes to your home are underway. If renovating, your chosen builder is now running the project. During the construction process we would schedule site visits, as required, to check the design detail and advise on any variations that may occur.


8. Styling.

Now for the fun part. If you have ordered furniture, rugs, artwork and accessories for your home we would schedule an installation day (or two if we need to). We would take delivery of all items, ensure they are placed in the correct position, and style appropriately.


9. Deficiencies.

Is there anything missing? Are there are any building works, furniture items or accessories that need to be fixed or added? At this stage we follow up on anything outstanding or source extra items to complete your home. (See FAQs regarding the responsibility of your chosen builder).

10. Complete!

And hopefully a photo shoot to record your finished project.


I hope this information has helped give you an understanding of how we work at Annie Bowen Design. If you would like to discuss your upcoming renovation project, we would love to hear from you.