Interior Design Society - IDS

We (Carolina Rustica) are trade members of IDS, the Interior Design Society, based here in High Point, NC.   The IDS describes itself as an "independent national organization more than 4,000 members strong. One of the country's largest design organizations dedicated to serving the residential interior design industry, the Interior Design Society offers members community, education and business support. Founded in 1973 by the National Home Furnishings Association (NHFA) to support interior designers based within furniture stores, the Interior Design Society has long since expanded its focus. All qualified residential design professionals, including those who work in a retail environment, are welcome and encouraged to join IDS as an adjunct to their classroom education"

The Charlotte Chapter of the IDS is a great mix of design professionals, trade affiliates, and showrooms like Carolina Rustica.  We have only been a member for a few months, but I enjoy the meetings tremendously, and have reconnected with some designers I knew from over 10 years ago when I had Himal Home Gallery on Kings Drive in Charlotte.

There are two main designer trade groups, IDS being one and the American Society of Interior Designers, or ASID, being the other.   ASID is perhaps a little more established, and its certainly older, but I like the peppiness of IDS.   I think IDS is perhaps a little more casual as well.   Each has a place in the design world, however, and its a pity the two rival organizations are not the best of pals (putting it mildly).   We intend to become trade affiliates with ASID as well, when I have the time to go to the meetings on a regular basis.

At Carolina Rustica, about 15% of our business is done through the trade.  And that number is growing, especially as mid-market consumers cut back.    Typically, your upper end customers work through designers, but that does not have to be the case.  Actually, interior designers work on all levels and are happy to accomodate almost any budget.  Here is another insight: Interior Designers can save you money.  Its true!  Many are able to negotiate discounted pricing with showrooms and dealers like Carolina Rustica, and some (but not all, of course) may pass those savings through to you.  If you are doing a large room with lots of items to purchase, this can actually result in significant savings,  especially if your designer is working by the hour.

Each designer works on a different basis for renumeration.  Some get a percentage back from the showroom or retailer.  Some work on an hourly basis.  Some set a price for the job.  It really depends, and as I mentioned earlier, they are very flexible in terms of working within your budget.  And of course, the results are wonderful.  After all, that is what they have trained for, and it is rigorous training indeed.

So go ahead and contact a designer, whether he or she is IDS or ASID or any of the other certifying organizations...and get started on your dream room!