philosophy. Designing a space is an intimate and personal endeavor, so it’s
important that you connect with the person that you’ll likely be spending lots of
time with to make your house a home.
Take this opportunity to express your
vision and ideas for the project, too. You
will be working closely with the designer,
and you will want someone that you feel
will make the right choices according to
your specifications and will listen to your
ideas and concerns. The following are
good topics to cover with prospective
• Inquire about the designer’s education,
training, experience, professional affili-
ations and other credentials. Ask to see
their portfolio and talk to former clients.
• Discuss the designer’s fee structure.
Designers work with a variety of fee
structures, based on a number of
variables. A retainer, which is a sum of
money paid to the designer and
applied to the balance due at the termination of the project, may be required.
• Ask about other services the designer
can provide and costs.
• Discuss project duration or deadlines
and the designer’s availability for taking
on the project within your timeframe.
• Establish parameters for updates and
ongoing communication between you
and the interior designer. Who else will
you be talking to in the office besides
your designer, for example? Make sure
you meet any assistants who will be
MAKING A DECISION
Once you’ve interviewed several designers,
compare their estimates – and know that
the one that is least expensive may not
always be the best. At the end of the
day, it really comes down to personality
first, and then style. Decide on whom
you’ll work with best, and then you’re
Also, differences in each proposal reflect
variables such as level of service and
quality of merchandise, so be sure to ask
for details if you need them. Once you
hire a designer, make sure you have a
signed contract before any work begins
or you deliver any deposit money. Then
it’s time to address specific project needs
and goals and come up with a plan of
action and a timetable for completion.
The more input you provide, the easier it
is for your interior designer to respond
with additional ideas and to create
spaces that will meet your aesthetic, functional and budgetary goals.
GARDENING IN DENVER
According to the Colorado State
University Cooperative Extension, the
average elevation of the state of
Colorado is 6,800 feet. In fact, three-fourths of the nation’s land above 10,000
feet is within its borders, which can have
a big impact on your lawn and garden
For example, Colorado’s low humidity,
fluctuating temperatures, heavy calcareous soils and drying winds often restrict
plant growth more than low temperatures, so it’s best to select plants that tolerate the area’s soil and climate conditions.
GREAT LANDSCAPING CAN
Landscaping not only helps showcase the
beauty of your home, but when done
correctly, it can also help reduce your
overall energy cost. Consider that proper
landscaping around your home can
reduce heat gain in summer by as much
as 50 percent and heat loss in winter by
up to 25 percent. And that can translate
into considerable savings on your monthly
You can also control wind velocity near
your home with properly placed plants. A
sun pocket around trees and other plants
offers an excellent location for a patio or
greenhouse. If outside activities are popular,
properly placed shade trees, fences and
windbreak plantings reduce wind, provide
shade and create a sun pocket for warm
weather, perfect for recreational pursuits.
The trees you choose are important, too.
Not only do they also add beauty, but
they can also help cut energy costs, clean
the air, reduce noise, create privacy, and
increase a property’s value. Trees add
visual appeal to a patio, pool or play
area, or they can be used to separate
spaces and provide space enclosure.
And those trees with color or distinctive
features are attractive accents in your
overall landscaping picture.
The amount of moisture needed can help
determine which species are suitable for
your yard. Be sure not to plant your tree
where it is mismatched with the amount of
available light. Every locality has its problems with particular insects or diseases, so
avoid the species that are prone to having
Ask a certified arborist, nursery professional,
urban forester, or extension agent about
which trees will thrive in your area. The
Colorado State University Cooperative
Extension has county offices prepared to
help with individual gardening needs. They
have a supply of leaflets that can provide
detailed information on the selection and
care of trees, shrubs, garden flowers,
vegetables and lawns. For more information,
It’s easy to see that the metro Denver area
offers plenty of choices to make your
home a wonderful place to live and relax,
including interior designers, specialty
furniture stores, landscaping, and more.
Choose wisely and ask for advice, and
you’ll be enjoying your new interior – and
exterior – in no!