After much research, I chose to undertake my studies with The Interior Design Academy because it suited my style of learning. I’m a do-er, not great at listening or textbooks, so university lecture halls were not my thing, nor was I spending years taking notes when I could be learning on the job.
The self-paced, flexible online learning means you can continue with your current job and lifestyle while studying and feeling supported and encouraged by a personal tutor.
Upon completing my course, I set up an ABN and started doing small design and styling jobs here and there before landing a full-time role with one of Australia’s biggest homeware brands, firstly managing their showrooms and, following that, as a buyer. My understanding of interior design, the consumer decision-making process and identifying design trends meant that I had great influence over the products that ended up in the showrooms of Australia; the skills and confidence of which I attribute greatly to The Professional Interior Design Course.
My career allowed me to travel the world and be immersed in the interior industry. I was even invited to judge the HIA Kitchen and Bathroom Awards in both 2011 and 2012, meeting and networking with some of Australia’s best design minds.
When I had my first child, my career was no longer compatible with my new role as ‘mum’. It was time to embark on my lifelong dream – owning my own interior design practice.
I shifted my focus and energy to building up my own business, Billy Hoo Studio. In our first 12 months, we have completed 7 commercial and 5 residential design projects and are looking forward to the challenges of the next 12 months and beyond.
If I have any advice for aspiring interior designers, it would be this – don’t be put off thinking you need a degree. A lot of interior design thinkers are not compatible with the lecture hall environment of study (that’s what makes us so creative!). This course is a great alternative, as long as you are willing to put in the hard yards outside of study.
Grow your network and be open-minded. Look at the greater industry, and don’t be put off considering roles that may seem only loosely related. The industry is really small once you’re in the door, so the possibilities are endless if you’re passionate and driven!