New country, new house? Why you need an interior designer in your life

So you have just moved to Zürich with the family.
All is swimmingly good. In fact, you feel like you are on holidays still: the lake is so mesmerising and the mountains cut a fine figure in the background of that new breath-taking view from your balcony. Perfect, non?!

Well… only there are some nagging thoughts popping up every so often. New adventure full of excitement, yes but you wish things could be made a little easier for you to settle in. You’d like the kids to feel at home already, you know how important it is to create that family nest right now to ensure a sense of stability and grounding since everybody has just been uprooted once again. This new house you are renting overlooking the lake is perfect but… the bed you bought in the States doesn’t fit in the new bedroom, you keep stubbing your toes in the chest of draws which seems to be in the way every single time and the French oak dining table looks so awkward in that blank open-plan dining space. It just doesn’t work. And it drags you down because if you could have a pleasant, comforting interior, you could focus more on the kids and on hubby and create that little bubble of happiness and comfort that you are all craving right now.

Fear not. This is why I am here, this is why thousands of interior designers are here. See, there are some key benefits to hire an interior designer who truly gets you…

1 – You have a new interior… no need to reinvent the wheel!

So your new rented house in Küsnacht doesn’t feel like a home yet? Absolutely normal. It will take a little time, some TLC and a creative eye to re-think your existing furniture in its new settings. But it can be done and it can be fun! Suddenly you start seeing the latent qualities of Auntie Betsy’s old sideboard. An interior designer will see all your furniture with a fresh pair of eyes and will be able to suss out the potential and usage of every piece. An interior designer will give you new ideas, a new perspective on how to best match what you have with where you are. He or she will know how to maximise your space best, how to link it all visually together so that it looks complete and harmonious. Suddenly the headache disappears and you start creating a little place that resonates with you and is essentially true to your family values, perpetuating the laughters and memories. It becomes your happy place.

2 – Styling doesn’t require a UBS unlimited funds bank account

I think you’ll find that you can easily re-use 80% of your existing furniture in your new space. So, you may have to tweak a bit the remaining 20%, investing in new accessories or a couple of pieces of furniture to get to a coherent style and look.  Now, you don’t have to spend a fortune on accessories and a couple of new chairs for instance. There are lots of reasonable online shops in Switzerland (Interio, Maisons du Monde, Ikea,…) as well as some unique independent shops around. You can also shop in ‘Brockis’ (second-hand furniture shops) in and around Zürich: I can spend hours in those and unearth some real (cheap) little treasures for your home. You can create your own unique space with very little indeed and style it your way, exactly how you like it. And don’t forget this part is the real fun!

3 – It will actually save you money and a lot of time and effort

Well, if you have a tendency to buy something because it looks good in the shop or on screen only to realise that it’s a complete no-no once you get home: yes, an interior designer will save you money. If you tend to drive to 2, 3 or 4 shops and back again before making your mind up because you are so not sure: yep, still will save you money (and precious time and effort). Think about the cost of returning the item, exchanging or getting a refund. And what about painting a room that colour you saw at a friend’s flat only to realise it doesn’t work at all in your flat and you have to paint it all over again? Or simply the driving around and wasting time in the back of beyond trying to find that shop Claire recommended when you could be with friends, at your German lesson or working on that new online idea. With an interior designer, you will get clear inspiration boards, furniture layout, vision boards with actual recommended furniture and accessories for your interior based on your likes and your style. You will be shown items / ideas / shops you wouldn’t have considered. You will receive all of this in one go for your approval from your interior designer, either in your inbox or over a nice cup of coffee – it is a real shortcut to getting the result you want.

4 – You effectively get a professional makeover

Yes, your friend Sarah or Sam may have some brilliant ideas on where you could place your egg chair in the lounge or the colour you should go for in the master bedroom. The truth is, with an interior designer, you get an immediate and comprehensive plan of action into place for your space. Even if in your mind it is for the simplest project, such as re-thinking a corner in an open-plan lounge or styling a teenage girl’s bedroom, you will get the full professional service you deserve. An interior designer will look at the space as a whole and will work with the space as a whole. You won’t get a disjointed approach resulting in a disjointed style. It will be carefully thought through and detailed to achieve the wow factor, to encompass the little things that turn a space into your space.

5 – But do your homework first

After all, this is only the home you are going to live in for the next 3 years at least… so don’t rush it. Take the time to find an interior designer you click with, who can bring you some real solutions without appealing to the Versace gods or calling in Kelly Hoppen every single time (and billing you for it). Somebody who is on the same page as you and can almost anticipate your interior questions and dilemmas.

You certainly have to be crystal clear about budget and quality too, especially here in Switzerland. If you are happy to buy something that will pretty much last for your stay in Switzerland, then Maisons du Monde can work. If you actually want to fork out for something that will stand the test of time, then maybe steer towards a Flamant or a Pfister shop. If you want a unique, bespoke solution then you have to be prepared to pay more money for it – but then it will fit perfectly your interior. At all levels, for all items, be aware of the quality you are buying and the use you want out of it. Set your expectations right and you will be a happy bunny.

With all of this in mind, go for it, take the plunge! It is so much fun and empowering to create your home on your own terms with the professional guidance of someone who understands you and your lifestyle. And remember to keep enjoying that view from your new balcony on a daily basis: it really is pretty special.

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