6 Career Options for Interior Design Graduates
Wonder what you can do with your interior design education? Here are 6 careers you can jump into.
Updated 10 May 2022
“Our interiors are an insight into our brains. It is a collaboration of design, art, humor, irony, functionality, and the street.” — Amanda Talbot
Are you currently studying interior design? What career path are you planning to pursue?
At its very essence, interior design is the artful balance between functionality and aesthetics. Check out these jobs that play by the same principle.
#1. Interior designer
As an interior design graduate, you are trained to be the perfect interior designer.
From designing private residential areas to commercial businesses and spaces, there are plenty of opportunities for you out there. It is your responsibility to bring the client’s vision to life, balancing the need for pleasing visuals with practical functionality.
This job requires someone with an eye for detail, the discipline and determination to see a project through from start to finish and the ability to work and collaborate with people. Think you have what it takes?
#2. Film / TV set designer
The career of an interior designer isn’t limited to just designing living spaces and corporate offices. You can also go into the entertainment industry and join the production crew to design sets for films, tv shows and theatre.
Your role as a set designer will involve planning and producing drawings for sets (i.e. physical surroundings used during a scene). From there, your drawings will be constructed in realistic sets complete with props, furniture and scenery.
To succeed in this job, you’ll need to be creative with a flair of generating original ideas. The work can be stressful due to tight deadlines and having to work with a myriad of personalities (e.g. director, producer, costume designer, sound director, etc.) but seeing your set drawings come to life on stage or on the silver screen can be highly rewarding.
#3. 3D visualiser
Another job that deals with balancing functionality with aesthetics is 3D visualiser. A crucial role in architectural design teams, it’s your job to bring design ideas to life in a digital form through the use of computer design software.
As a 3D visualiser, you will create 3D visuals and photorealistic designs from architectural plans and drawings. This includes applying appropriate textures and lighting to the 3D models so that they appear realistic.
A good 3D visualiser should be proficient in design software and have an eye for conceptualising and visualising ideas.
#4. Event and exhibition designer
Like an interior designer, an exhibition designer is in charge of designing a functional space. However, they work for a different crowd of people.
An exhibition designer is specifically employed to work on commercial events and public exhibitions, like cultural exhibitions and trade shows. They might also work on temporary displays for retailers as well as conferences for trade, industry or education.
In this job, you’re not only communicating with your clients. The spaces you design are meant to appeal to the clients’ target market so you need to know how to balance between the two. You also have to be practical and resourceful, making sure to deliver high quality work while staying within the limitations of budget and space constraints.
#5. Furniture designer
Interior design graduates also have the option to specialise in furniture design.
Your role and workload may vary depending on whether you are self-employed or working with a manufacturing company but essentially, your duty revolves around coming up with furniture that’s both functional and aesthetically-pleasing.
So what do you need to succeed in this job? Firstly, you need to have an in-depth knowledge of the history of furniture design. This means knowing what is good and bad design as well as how to improve on current designs.
You will also need to understand the different types of materials you can use to create a good product. For designers working with manufacturers, picking the right material will also mean taking note of the availability and sustainability of resources, as well as pricing costs.
You might also need to have a basic proficiency in computer design software like AutoCAD, Inventor, SolidWorks and Photoshop.
Further down the line after accumulating practical experience in the interior design field, you can start considering starting your own interior design-related businesses. Now that you have insight into how the industry works, you can use it to start a business that meets the demands of the industry.
Some of your business options could be starting an interior design consultancy firm, furniture and lighting store and home furnishing company. In fact, if you’re looking for inspiration, look no further than Whitespade, an interior design studio, and CANVAST, a furniture and accessory store, both founded and owned by interior design graduates.
DID YOU KNOW
A degree in business can help you establish a strong business foundation that can help you when you start your own business.
From the success of interior design shows like Casa Impian and Divine Design, it is obvious that the world loves interior design. And why shouldn’t they? Interior design is certainly a fascinating and fun field.