Ever wonder what inspires designers and renovation pros as they prepare to take on a project? From social media to mood boards, it turns out that the experts consult a variety of resources, proving that a great design idea can be just around the corner. Read on to learn where nine pros look for inspiration pre-renovation.
1. A Client's Lifestyle
"My inspiration for renovations comes from the client’s lifestyle and current stage in life. If our client is completing a renovation due to a growing family, we make sure to have lots of child-friendly access to spaces. Also, we will make sure to cover all pieces in stain resistant, yet soft fabrics to make life as easy possible. If we have a couple who are empty nesters, we will change the look of spaces based on the couple’s less family demanding needs, and indulge in certain spaces and streamline other rooms. Reason being, it allows an empty nester couple to shut the door and travel more easily." — Tracy Morris of Tracy Morris Design
2. A Client's Personality
"I find my inspiration from my clients, their stories, and their homes. There is a lot one can learn about a person, what they like or don't, where they grew up, what they do for a living, and what their hobbies are—all of these influence my designs. Also, if they like to travel and if it's a particular place that makes them feel good, we definitely discuss. I'm working right now on a room inspired by the Beverly Hills Hotel." — Iwona Petrov of yZiGN Interiors
3. The Home Itself
"When renovating, it is important to gain an understanding of the needs of the client and the story they have to tell, paired with what the home already has to offer. Gaining inspiration for how a homeowner interacts with their space, entertains, and how big of a renovation our clients are ready to take on, we can decide if their home needs one of our signature 'micro-renovations' or if it’s asking for a full down-to-the-studs renovation. To build a dream home, it’s important that the homeowner's personal needs are the inspiration, rather than a standard cookie cutter style." — Beth Dotolo of Pulp Design Studios
4. Social Media
"As an interior designer, I find inspiration for my renovations in many places. I draw from my formal education in design and from real life experiences I’ve had through the years. I find inspiration on social media platforms such as Houzz, Pinterest, Instagram, and in home decor magazines. I get most of my ideas though from my favorite designers on Instagram.
Time spent with loved ones at the beach is perhaps the greatest inspiration of all for me. I do get a lot of my inspiration from nature. The colors and beauty of the ocean, sand and sky, sunsets, and happy voices help me gain a fresh perspective and inspire my imagination." — Hannah Rasa of InSite Builders & Remodeling
"I gain inspiration from observing different cultures and styles when I travel. It's with this exposure through travel that I am able to gather new ideas to incorporate in my own design. When evaluating how to renovate, I make sure to truly listen to my clients and their needs, and then do as much research as possible. That could mean researching historical styles if it's a specific era of colonial Spanish [design] or really diving into the roots of a ranch home.
Lastly, I gain inspiration from my peers! I follow amazing designers that I admire, and am constantly feeding myself inspiration so that when new projects and styles come up, they come to the forefront of my mind." — Christine Vroom of Christine Vroom Interiors
"Books are always super inspirational as well for our team and we have collected our favorites over the past few years to use regularly. Right now, I'm inspired by Beata Heuman's book, Every Room Should Sing and Athena Calderone's Live Beautiful." — Jessica Nelson of Jessica Nelson Design
7. Mood Boards
“I like to stay very active and up to date on my socials, magazines, and online resources. Things that immediately inspire me are saved away to a folder for future reference. I really enjoy creating mood boards whether it’s for a current project, or just for fun. I photograph all of them, make a reference list, and attach it to the photo. It keeps my brain creative and I have an archive of personal creations that I love.
I also pay attention and make note of details whenever I’m in a space I really dig. Any restaurant, store, home, et. cetera. I observe layout, lighting, furniture, details in the hard finishes, and everything in between. I’m basically updating the creative part in my brain 24/7." — Eleanor Trepte of Dekay & Tate
8. The French Joie de Vivre
“We are always inspired differently with each kitchen renovation we are a part of, but always lean on our admiration and respect for the French joie de vivre. For each project, we always create beautiful spaces for our clients to use whether it be for cooking, entertaining, or just enjoying family—the kitchen and the memories made there are constant inspiration for future projects." — Maria Moraes, of L’Atelier Paris Haute Design
9. Location, Location, Location
"One of the biggest sources of inspiration is the location and the architecture of the home itself. My goal is always to create a cohesive interior that is harmonious with the exterior. I think of the full experience from when you first pull into the driveway to the moment you step foot into the backyard. I also lean heavily on my clients for inspiration as well. I want their project to feel like a commissioned art piece that they can't wait to show off to their friends." — Brittany Farinas of House of One