My Design Strategy: The Five P's
As I am working on design projects in parallel with going to school to complete my Interior Design certificate, I created an over-arching strategy for the day-to-day which goes hand-in-hand with the interior design acumen. This probably stems from my days at managing a team at Microsoft, but it also has a lot to do with being a mom and wife in a busy life. Must have a foundation and process for the passion or things can go in too many directions. So here it is, not always in this order:
PATIENCE - Design has a lot of moving parts, timelines, and people involved. I am not necessarily the most patient person but I have trained myself to slow down with projects in order to do my best work. For example, the design phase of a project can take weeks. Lining up contractors can take months, furniture deliveries, etc. The finished product will always be beautiful, but it will require patience!
PERCOLATE - This is the most important to me. (Though my kids hate this word. :) I find that decision making in design is so personal and there are many layers with the process. On Monday I may love a certain sofa and/or fabric in a room and by Tuesday I am going a different direction. This part of the process can be the most fun in design so I have learned to enjoy the search and embrace all facets of the project. Open myself up to new colors and ideas and I will get clarity along the way, I just have to trust my instinct and enjoy the ride. I have respect for the process so I try not to rush into any short term decisions, or impulse purchases. I give myself a time period in which to entertain different themes and ideas for a project, percolate, and then finalize the decisions so that I can stay on task.
PRACTICE - As I am new to formalizing my projects I have chosen to practice a lot on my own home, and/or friends homes. The more practice the more comfortable I am. Drafting, drafting, drafting. Paint colors, furniture lines, history of a home, etc. There is so much to learn. The more practice involved the better the outcome.
PERFECTION-LITE - So, I have a degree of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder; my family would say it is severe but I think it is quite normal. :) I am not necessarily a perfectionist which I am thankful for in the world of design, but I do like things a certain way. I find that when working on projects I need to be open to pivoting often. Making a room perfect is not possible as our perception can be so different from a finished product. Relax and do my best. Focus and balance.
PEACE - Once the process and the percolating are at rest I think it is important to be at peace with the project. There is an end to each one, where the camera comes out and the room(s) are complete. I try to enjoy this conclusion as much as possible and be at peace with all of the parts of the puzzle.