Frequently asked questions

Do I need an interior designer for my project?

An interior designer can help you create an overall vision for your project and produce beautiful, cohesive spaces. Building a new home, or renovating an existing home, is very time consuming. An interior designer can work through all the details, coordinate all the material selections, and facilitate completion of the project. An experienced designer can help keep your project running on time and on budget.

I have never worked with an interior designer before. How does it work?

Each client and project is different. The first step is to schedule a consultation so that we can discuss your project and how we can best help you.

When do I need to involve an interior designer on my project?

The earlier the better! You have the most options with the design at the initial planning stages.

What is the difference between an interior designer and an interior decorator?

"Many people use the terms "interior design" and "interior decorating" interchangeably, but these professions differ in critical ways."

"Interior design is the art and science of understanding people's behavior to create functional spaces within a building. Decoration is the furnishing or adorning of a space with fashionable or beautiful things. In short, interior designers may decorate, but decorators do not design."

"Interior designers apply creative and technical solutions within a structure that are functional, attractive and beneficial to the occupants' quality of life and culture. Designs respond to and coordinate with the building shell and acknowledge the physical location and social context of the project. Designs must adhere to code and regulatory requirements and encourage the principles of environmental sustainability."

"The interior design process follows a systematic and coordinated methodology—including research, analysis and integration of knowledge into the creative process—to satisfy the needs and resources of the client."

"Many U.S. states and Canadian provinces have passed laws requiring interior designers to be licensed or registered—documenting their formal education and training—and many of them specifically require that all practicing interior designers earn the NCIDQ Certificate to demonstrate their experience and qualifications. By contrast, interior decorators require no formal training or licensure." (from"

The state of Texas no longer has a title act for interior designers. So, anyone can call themselves an interior designer. However, interior designers that are licensed with the state can use the term "Registered Interior Designer". Dawn Hearn is a Registered Interior Designer with the state of Texas, #9501.

What is your firm's decorating style?

We enjoy working in a variety of styles and creating custom interiors to best reflect the interests and personalities of the client. The majority of our projects are classic and tailored whether they are traditional, rustic, eclectic, or modern.

What is your fee schedule/pricing structure?

We offer several options for how we can work with our clients. Please contact us to review the best way that we can help you.

Do you work outside the Austin metro area?

Yes. Each job is considered on an individual basis.

What are your business hours?

Our hours are typically 9:00 to 5:00, Monday through Friday. Evenings and weekends are by special appointment.

Do you work with remodelers and builders?

Yes. We can assist your clients in the design and material selections for their new home or renovation. We can help them break down the large amount of selections into manageable phases so that they are not overwhelmed with the decisions that need to be made. We specialize in staying ahead of your construction deadlines so the job can progress smoothly. We can help you and your client achieve a beautiful, finished project. Please contact us for more information about our services and packages for remodelers and builders.

What is "to-the-trade"?

To-the-trade showrooms do not operate like a retail store. They sell their merchandise exclusively to interior designers, architects, and design professionals at wholesale prices.

What is ASID?

"Founded in 1975, the American Society of Interior Designers is the oldest, largest and leading professional organization for interior designers. The Society's 18,000 practicing interior designers work in all areas of both commercial and residential design. Professional members of ASID must pass rigorous acceptance standards: They must have a combination of accredited design education and/or full-time work experience and pass a two-day accreditation examination administered by the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ)." (from Dawn Hearn is a professional member of ASID."

What is NARI?

"NARI's roots go back to 1935 when President Roosevelt's National Recovery Act established the beginnings of NERSICA (The North East Roofing, Siding and Insulation Contractors Association)."

"In 1956 President Eisenhower established Operation Home Improvement, a nationwide effort emphasizing the rehabilitation of existing housing rather than new construction. The National Home Improvement Council (N.H.I.C) emerged from this effort."

"By the mid-1960s, NERSICA no longer reflected the membership of the growing industry and its name was changed to the National Remodelers Association (NRA)."

"In 1983, the National Remodelers Association and the National Home Improvement Council joined to establish the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI). Today, NARI has 58 chapters nationwide and has enjoyed a sizeable growth period during the past decade."

"NARI's Core Purpose is to advance and promote the remodeling industry's professionalism, product and vital public purpose." (from Dawn Hearn is a member of NARI."

What is CAPS?

"The Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS) designation program teaches the technical, business management, and customer service skills essential to competing in the fastest growing segment of the residential remodeling industry: home modifications for the aging-in-place." (from"

Most of us want to remain independent and living in our homes as long as possible. Most of us don't make a plan of how we can age in place. Whether it is an illness, an accident, or age-related issues, the majority of us will have special needs at some point. Planning now can prevent these issues from threatening our ability to stay in our home.

Whether you are building a new home or renovating your existing home, the design of the spaces and the material and finish selections can be mindful of helping you be comfortable in your home for as long as possible.

Dawn Hearn received her CAPS certification thought the National Association of Home Builders in 2009.

Still have questions? Feel free to contact me.
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