Do you offer work experience placements or internships?
No, not at present. Unfortunately we cannot always reply to requests for this due to the volume of enquiries.
Why do I need a designer?
Most commonly clients come to us because they are overwhelmed by choice, and no longer have energy for making decisions. Sometimes clients can't work out how to make a space function properly, or they simply can’t visualise the end result. Perhaps a DIY project has never been completed and needs remedying. If there is time pressure to ready a room for a new baby’s arrival or an elderly relative moving in for example, a designer can help by removing the stress of decision making, undertake all the requisite planning and manage the realisation of the design.
What do you actually do?
First, we listen to clients to define the challenges within a space, then ascertain their likes, dislikes, dreams and desires. We research the problems to find the best solution. Time is spent carefully sourcing furnishings to ensure they are fit for purpose and appropriate for the particular project. Then we create a bespoke aesthetic to appeal to and uniquely represent the personality of the client.
How does it work?
All projects begin with a Bronze Service consultation on site, followed up with an illustrated, written report. From there, a fee proposal can be generated for clients interested in progressing to the Silver Service. Part of the Bronze Service fee is redeemable against the price of the Silver quote when a client proceeds with the project. Please request a brochure below for more details.
How long will it take?
Bronze Service Consultations can usually booked a week or two in advance, and the follow up report delivered around one week later. Silver Service design schemes can take up to a few weeks to generate, as samples of finishes will need to be ordered. Depending on the scale of the project, Gold Service installations can takeseveral months to complete from the first consultation. Furniture and curtains canhave a lead time of two weeks to two months. Our workload is variable, and we will always aim to accommodate your preferred timescale, provided we can still honour current client deadlines. So, please be sure to allow plenty of time for you project.
Many interior designers offer a free consultation. Why don't you?
We love our work and want to stay in business! Unfortunately conducting site visits and consultations free of charge undermines the profession of design, and is an unsustainable business model. We value transparency, so are clear about when a client is paying for a service. As an independent we cannot and do not disguise the true cost of designing by selling vast quantities of mass produced products. However; there is plenty of inspiration to be found on our blog, Instagram and Pinterest pages, all for free!
How do I know you are the right designer for me?
There are plenty of design companies to choose from and we all work slightly differently, so the best advice is to go with your gut instinct. A good working relationship between designer and client is vital to the success of a project. Larger scale jobs may last several months, so it is better to make your selection based on who you feel most comfortable with rather than on price alone. Our Bronze Service gives client and designer an excellent opportunity to see whether they would be a good fit for a longer term project.
How much will it cost?
It depends on the level of service that you need, and how much you want to spend. We charge a flat rate for Bronze Service, part of which is refundable against further design work. Estimating how much a particular design project will cost is a complex and detailed process that first requires gathering lots of information about the property and about client requirements. The Bronze Service familiarises the designer with the project, and the client with the designer, and then a fee proposal for further design work can be more accurately generated.
How do you charge?
We prefer to quote a flat fee, to minimise client anxiety over mounting hours. Bronze Service consultations are invoiced on the day. On Silver and Gold Service projects, hourly or day rates may apply but this will be agreed in advance. Timesheets are kept and made available upon request. Payments are staggered, usually in thirds, to spread the cost for the client and maintain cashflow for the designer. Payment is accepted in cash, cheque, BACS transfer and Bristol Pounds.
Why do I need to determine and disclose my budget?
It may seem impolite to ask for a specific figure, but It is far ruder to speculate how much a client might have or may wish to spend on a job. One person’s small budget is another person’s idea of a fortune, so it is essential to be clear about figures from the outset in order for clients to remain in control of their finances. Setting a budget also means Zoë does not waste time sourcing from the wrong position in the market, be it too high or too low. To avoid exceeding the budget, Zoë Hewett Interiors designates a percentage as a contingency budget, working to the remaining figure. This way, when there are surprises or changes that increase the total spend, the amount by which the budget is exceeded should be minimised. Zoë has worked with young people living in social housing, millionaires and people in between using the same principle - no matter the money.
What if I don't like your design scheme?
Zoë has not yet made a design scheme that a client has disliked. However, in the event of a client not liking a design scheme, it will be revised once to ensure client satisfaction. Further revisions will be chargeable.
I feel embarrassed to let a designer see my home or business, should I be?
Absolutely not. We have the vision to turn your dreams in to reality, and can see past any mess, neglect, clutter, DIY bodges or disrepair without judgement. Everyone loves a good before and after photo!
I previously hired an interior designer and had a bad experience, should I be hesitant to try again?
If at any stage while working with Zoë Hewett Interiors you feel concerned or unhappy, it is vital that you communicate it straightaway so your worries can be allayed or the problem solved quickly. It may be already in-hand and we simply forgot to say, or it may be a mistake but please always tell us immediately so that it can be resolved sooner rather than later. We use contracts and try to be clear about terms and conditions at the commencement of every project.
Do you sell the products you put in your schemes?
Yes, Zoë Hewett Interiors retails wallpapers and textiles from all the major fabric houses, keeping ordering convenient for clients. To avoid a one-stop-shop aesthetic, we like to source from a variety of different dealers, including one-off and unusual items from top secret suppliers that cannot be found on the high street. We are also happy to incorporate any items already chosen or owned by clients both to save them money and create a truly unique look for every project. As an independent, we specify products solely because of their suitability for a project.