I am thrilled with my decision to invest the time in obtaining my diploma from The Interior Design Academy. I was looking for a course which provided me not only with theory and know-how, but was also particularly career focused and emphasised the practical aspect of working within interior design. For example, how to interact with people and take on real jobs as part of the course requirements. This course offered me just that, and more.

The course also alerts you to problems you might encounter, tips and ideas, along with industry contacts and website information for further research.

I followed the course closely and endeavoured not to rush the tutorials in order to obtain a well rounded learning experience. Due to the flexibility of the course, I was able to work on my assignment at times convenient to me. This was great as my regular job can be demanding on my time.

An invaluable part of the course for me was that the tutors came from design backgrounds themselves. This meant information that was not only relevant, but already tried. My tutor would offer additional information beyond that contained in the tutorials including tricks of the trade which he found helpful in his own design practice. He would also provide unique examples from his own experience and offer advice or suggestions on my work for ‘next time’. All correspondence I received was relevant and encouraging.

Due to my history in other areas of design (graphic / web), I was looking at this course as a way to expand my creative skills and open more doors career-wise. I wasn’t sure what area of design I was interested in. This course was fantastic in offering in-depth information about a wide range of specialised areas. It encouraged me to look into areas I had not considered. For example commercial, hospitality and retail design – to name a few. This meant I was able to discover my own path within the framework.

After completing the course I am inspired and focused on my direction – residential design and consultancy for pre-sale preparations. One assignment requiring my to do a ‘sample consultation’ has led to undertaking the actual project. I am currently working on a renovation with a friend – we have lifted her carpets to reveal fantastic boards, had polishers freshen up the floors, rolled up our sleeves and repainted her lounge and dining area (adding feature walls), and meanwhile her furniture has gone to be re-upholstered in fabric which I sourced from a specific retailer.

I have also provided consultation to my local real estate agent suggesting ideas to improve his own apartment for sale. I am happy to undertake these projects free of charge while I establish a good network of contact and build experience. Having a sound portfolio is going to improve my potential for obtaining work and further develop my skills and establish a sound career. That is my ambition.

And when I reach that stage I will have all the resources I need from the course to guide me in setting up my own practice.

Sara Bradford