However, it is still a disturbing reality that interior designers and architects are often not given as much recognition for their efforts as is deserved.
A series of articles published in the US regarding the licensing laws of interior designers was met with a shocking reaction from the online community, receiving plenty of backlash from commentators in the industry.
Licensing laws in the US, which were focused on Alabama and Nevada in this particular series of discussion, can be stringent and all-encompassing. According to the American Society of Interior Designers this is because ‘every decision an interior designer makes in one way or another affects the health, safety and welfare of the public.’
The reaction to this statement got the strongest, and perhaps most negative reaction. One industry commentator stated such a sentiment ‘hardly passes the laugh test’, while another offering up a mocking ‘please be careful when moving furniture for purposes of design, people.’ Those two comments offered a clear indication of the condescending attitude that can be aimed at interior designers.
It is time that the industry and the public move beyond the concept that interior designers simply move around furniture and pick ‘pretty’ colour schemes. The sector is as much about the psychological as it is the physical. Much is made of the influencing powers of interior design elements for one reason and one reason only: they have been proven to be incredibly influential.
Studies have shown that designing spaces in a way that promotes healing can drastically reduce pain in patients and cut down a patient’s recovery time and that considered interior design in mental health facilities can reduce stays by up to 14 per cent.
When someone can create a space that affects your health, well-being, mood and even your actions, let alone the understanding of zoning, safety risks and building codes, it seems safe to say they should be trained and certified to a standard.
Licensing these practitioners not only allows them to be recognised as an important part of this industry, but also holds them accountable for our ‘ health, safety and welfare.’