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  • Writer's pictureaseelbysketchbook

Sharing My Mistakes - So you don't have to go through them...

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I recently had the opportunity to collaborate with a talented designer in Dubai on a fabulous project. This project pushed me out of my comfort zone in terms of styles and colors, and we made numerous decisions together.

Working on this project was truly enjoyable (and truly stressful, simultaneously). We achieved many outstanding features that turned out to be stunning.

However, as is common in any design project, mistakes were inevitable, especially considering the project's size and the short-ish timeline.

I have always had a fascination with {mistakes}, it's not my first time (nor will it be my last, I think) sharing my mistakes and suggesting ways to deal with them.

In the spirit of sharing and hoping to prevent others from making the same mistakes, I want to discuss these errors with you. If you ever undertake a large project on your own, try to return back to this page or make a checklist to help you remember that anyone can make the following flaws:

  1. INACCURATE MEASUREMENTS & WALL LEVELS: Astonishingly, this is one of those things that is consistently overlooked when it's the most important part of creating a functional, detailed, and beautiful design. This is your sign to double and triple-check every single measurement, particularly for custom-made items. When measuring, be sure to assess if the wall is straight. Sometimes, previous contractors may have made slight mistakes that are imperceptible to the naked eye. The only way to catch these errors is through precise measurements and the use of a level. For instance, if you have a niche that extends vertically on a wall, the top might not align perfectly with the bottom. It's no one's fault, but as designers, it's our responsibility to thoroughly check measurements. A common fix for wall flaws (tilted or skewed) is usually creating a shadow gap to give the built-in piece a parallel-looking alignment to said wall. Another solution (which I figured out months after completing the project) is using paintable caulk to blend in any difference in levels.

  2. COORDINATION: During the design process, you find yourself using multiple software platforms to illustrate your work to clients. Occasionally, decisions are made without proper coordination across all communication channels where your designs are shared. Despite having two designers on this project, it was still a challenge to consolidate all the information in one place. To avoid this, it's essential to establish a system and create a detailed checklist to ensure that all drawings align with what you're presenting to the client.

  3. COMMUNICATION If you make changes because something won't work, doesn't fit, or is too complicated to achieve, it's vital to communicate these updates with the client. Have them sign off on the changes and document them. Design changes are inevitable and will occur regardless of your intentions. Unfortunately, we made the mistake of occasionally forgetting to document certain changes.

  4. OWNING UP TO YOUR MISTAKES IS AN ART (and sometimes, you need to know when not to do it) Sometimes, admitting your mistake when you can fix it is ultimately foolish. In an ideal world, people would appreciate you taking responsibility and consider you noble. However, we don't live in an ideal world, to say the least. We made two major mistakes—one was communicated and cost us an extra $1500, while the other went unnoticed because we failed to communicate it effectively.

  5. NOT A MISTAKE, JUST A PERSONAL PREFERENCE: Collaborating with another designer is very tricky, you've got to be diplomatic, and you've got to respect that their process or ways might be different than your own. You might not always align or agree on everything, but it's important to know that collaborating isn't for everybody (and it definitely is not for me). I have a huge amount of respect for the lead designer of the project, she is still one of the most creative, fun-spirited women I have ever met. But having to adhere to someone else's schedule and style of work is not for me and it might not be for everyone. I have quit my previous jobs for the same reasons, I work better alone, and I will eventually learn to delegate but it will be very hard to be anyone else's 2nd chair.

By acknowledging these mistakes and learning from them, we can become better designers and avoid similar pitfalls in the future. Remember, even in the face of setbacks, it's crucial to remain adaptable and continuously improve our craft.

All love to you, wonderful designers,

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Comments (7)

Jun 26

This is truly great guidance for the aspirants of interior design. The guidance about who is an interior designer, how to get there, and how about the career path are so very well explained. Thank you for the very helpfulpost.<a href="">Best Modular Kitchen and Wardrobes | Interior Design for Home</a>


Nawara Adra
Apr 09

Great effort, best of luck in the course as well 🙌🏻


Jan 21

🤩 Thank you!


Dec 30, 2023

thank you !


Dec 20, 2023

Love this! thank you.


Mar 06, 2023

Hello, this is Alex your article is so beautiful to reading I have a same blog about fashion please visit here: Stylemenz


Oct 03, 2022

amazing..super detailed for every step! thanks for sharing Aseel

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