Technology Keeps the Interior Design Industry Moving Forward

Now that the economy is recovering and consumers are willing to spend money on their homes, architect and interior designer Abby Randall explains how the industry is evolving to keep up with the latest trends.

When the stock market crashed and the recession kicked in, multiple industries across the country—including architecture and interior design—were pushed to the back burner. But now that the housing industry is on the mend and the economy is recovering, more and more homeowners are willing to invest in their properties again.

Abby Randall, one of the architects and interior designers behind the Chicago-based company Randall Architects, is seeing this resurgence in demand play out first hand. She and her husband first started their company when the market got really tough. But even though that may not seem like the best time to start a business, they decided they’d invest in themselves instead of trying to find work in an economy that wasn’t hiring. Their decision to go into business for themselves paid off—Randall Architects has been building and enhancing people’s homes for over a decade. And now that homeowners have more money to spend, Randall says there are a few new trends that are dominating the industry across the board.

“It’s clear that consumers are starting to feel more comfortable about spending money on their houses again. But the things that they’re looking for now are completely different than they were in the past,” said Randall. “Instead of designing their homes to be luxurious and glamorous, the current trend is all about convenience and comfort. It comes down to the fact that when people make the decision to invest in their homes, they’re choosing to spend their money in a more meaningful way.”

Beyond convenience and comfort, technology is the other factor determining how consumers redesign their homes. Smart homes are more popular than ever, especially now that advanced upgrades can be made without any visual clutter.

“Architecture and interior design have always been constantly changing industries. But technology has taken that rapid pace to the next level,” said Randall. “Homes can now be outfitted with the latest technology without any cords or visible markings. And that type of technology is only expected to become more advanced as time goes on.”

With technology continuing to dictate the latest home design trends, Randall says that working with an expert is more important than ever before. Because there are so many upgrades available to homeowners today, it’s impossible for consumers to keep up on their own.

That ultimately leads to one of the biggest roadblocks facing the interior design industry today: being able to think outside the box. When a homeowner has grown accustomed to living in a certain space for years, it can be difficult—or even impossible—for them to envision their house to look another way. That’s where the value of an interior designer comes in. They have the ability to open consumers’ eyes to new ideas that previously weren’t on the table.

“It’s essential for homeowners to know that their interior designer has a strong knowledge base of the housing and architecture industries before signing on to work with them. Home design is based entirely on trust. You need to believe that whatever your interior designer suggests should be considered, even if it’s something that you have trouble envisioning yourself,” said Randall. “I initially got my start as an interior designer after working as an architect for years. The industries go hand in hand—you can’t build a great space without having an understanding of what’s going into it.”