Interior Designer VS Home Decorator

interior design vs home decoration

Home Decor Vs Interior Design – What is the difference?

One of the most common questions that I used to get as a interior design student was; what is the difference between an interior designer and a home decorator?

Let’s get into it…interior designers and home decorators are two separate services to choose from while planning about making a few changes to your existing home design.

These terms are not interchangeable as both the services and qualifications vary from each other. In fact these terms are being misused by people across the world (at times including by myself here on the blog).

If you found yourself to this article, you must be curious to know everything about the differences in home decor vs interior design. Since both professionals carry different design objectives, there are a few visible differences between home decorators and interior designers to help you realize whose services you might be looking for right now.

Let’s jump straight into it!

interior designer vs home decorator

Photo by Ksenia Chernaya from Pexels

home decor vs interior design

Home Decorator

No Formal Schooling

Home decorators do not require any formal schooling to operate as home decorators as long as their major emphasis remains on making a home aesthetically appealing. Home decorators do not participate in the structuring or renovation of an interior.


Home decorators can opt for many certifications and courses that teach them to master home styling with colors, fabrics, space planning, decoration with furnishing and decorative pieces, room layouts, selection of furniture style, and much more.

Plenty of these courses are available to take online these days. These courses are available to facilitate home decorators in becoming more understanding of the different decor rules and how to apply them accordingly.


Home decorators are aimed at taking the décor of a space to the next level. They focus on assisting the clients in the selection of home décor style, color pallet, furniture type, décor accessories, the layout of the rooms, lighting plan and more.

interior designer vs home decorator

Photo by Artem Podrez from Pexels

interior designer vs home decorator

Photo by Karina Zhukovskaya from Pexels

Join Our Newsletter

Sign up for our design stories and design tips.

Plus get a free guide + worksheet:
“How you can reach your lifestyle dreams through your design”

Interior Designer

Interior Designer Education

Interior design is an art of science. Interior designers require formal schooling and professional training before entering the marketplace (this is the training that I started through an online school years ago called Rhodec, but unfortunately due to finances and more interest for blogging, ended up never completing my BA).

Interior designers participate in structural planning and execution of interiors of houses and other spaces. Interior designers are trained to deal with colors, fabrics, materials, understanding of spatial balance, knowledge of design styles and trends, drawing, architecture, computer-aided design (CAD) training, budgeting, time management skills, and much more.


Although interior designers possess professional certifications, sometimes, they are also required to pass exams and get registered by the government. After this, they are able to be called professional interior designers.

After graduation, the interior designers are supposed to practice their skills usually with already established interior designing companies to get hands-on experience before entering the marketplace or starting their own firm.


The interior designers are assigned to offer spatial planning, designing and renovation of a space. Interior designers do their work from scratch. From planning the floor plan of the house to doing the last finishing work; they are appointed to get everything done and to make sure all is planned out with safety codes in mind. Interior designers have a vast array of knowledge and exposure that help them do their job professionally.

See Also
Style with open books

Some interior designers are also focused on specific areas like the approach of holistic interior design.

interior designer vs home decorator

Photo by Monstera from Pexels

So should you hire an interior designer or a home decorator?

Choosing between them all comes down to the different objectives between a home decorator and an interior designer.

If you are in a phase to plan your home from scratch or going to renovate then you should go for an interior designer who will do everything from the beginning to end all on their own. They will also make sure all is being safely executed. From structural planning to execution and styling; interior designers have a lot more to do. They will have to ensure that every tiny detail of home décor and design must go according to your desires, for which they also need to work in coordination with contractors or architects.

If you, on the other hand, want to make your current home looking nicer and planned out better but with little or no renovations, then you can hire a professional home decorator (or even an interior designer).

The other difference between the two is usually a home decorator will have a lower fee than a fully trained and licensed interior designer or interior architect. Which of course is only fair considering the amount of schooling,m training and skills that are needed and utilized for this profession. So if you are opting for a new layout or a fresh take on your space then hiring a home decorator can make sense. What is good to keep in mind though, is to also check the different trade deals each of the different designers/decorators you get quotes on, since usually they will have access to different deals that can benefit your overall budget when sourcing furniture and finishes.

Was this article helpful to you?

I hope this article has been helpful in guiding you if an interior designer or a home decorator is the right move for your next project. If you have any questions, let me know in the comments below and I will happily address them.

Have fun creating your meaningful home!


Share Your Thoughts