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Refitting or fitting out an existing outlet is undoubtedly exciting. Nevertheless, it often comes with associated interior design challenges. Addressing these problems with professionalism and care is critical to ensure the success of the project. So, in today’s blog post, we share some of the most common interior design challenges shopfitters and interior designer face and offer tried-and-tested solutions on how to overcome them.

Commercial interior design is a complex process aimed at designing and building spaces tailored to success. As part of this process, architects, interior designers and shopfitters work creatively together to find the best equipment, fixtures and fittings to achieve the highest levels of creative designs. The ultimate goal? To create spaces that attract and engage users and customers. To build spaces that seamlessly blend efficiency and high aesthetic value.

Often, achieving these goals means facing interior design challenges and learning how to overcome them. Today’s blog post is all about that. We present six common interior design challenges and share a few tips on how to overcome them.

The Challenges of Creating Great Interior Designs

Interior design is inherently subjective. What works in one particular setting might not work in another. As a result, one of the first interior design challenges is understanding the needs and wants of it. And while there are no one-size-fits-all solutions for every commercial space, great interior designs share a few common traits.

So what characterises great interior design? At its core, great interior design is all about finding a balance between high aesthetic appeal and overall functionality. In order to do that, interior designers need to carefully consider and find a balance between the various factors that affect the aesthetics and functionality of the space. Lighting, colours, materials, texture and form and quintessential in this regard. But so is efficiency. A carefully created interior design should cater to user needs and model environments tailored to efficiency and sales.

What are the most common interior design challenges?

But what are some interior design challenges interior designers face when redesigning a commercial space? What problems should you prepare for when renovating your space? And above all, what solutions exist that allow you to overcome these challenges?

Working with a small space

Creating an interior design concept for a small space is one of the most common design challenges interior designers and shopfitters face. The main challenge in these cases are related to making the space look and feel larger and creating a floor plan and layout that allows for maximum efficiency and optimises workflow. So, what can you do if you have limited space and no possibility to expand your business?

Fortunately, there are numerous tactics you can use to overcome this design challenge. One of the easiest and quickest solutions is playing with light and colour. Thus, glossy finishes, bright lighting and more natural light can help your space look and feel larger. Similarly, a minimalist style interior design can make the space feel less cluttered and crowded.

But focusing on making the space visually larger is not the only interior design challenge related to small spaces. Finding appropriate storage and display solutions is also critical. If that is the case, opting for multifunctional furniture and bespoke joinery can be the perfect solution. Thus, in a small restaurant, bar or cafe, you might consider investing in seating furniture with added storage areas below the seating. Extra drawers behind the counter or at the bottom part of shelves can be a great option in retail spaces.

Working with an old building

Similarly, older buildings can be difficult to work with. Not only do they require a more generous budget for the refit, but often the building also requires thorough structural and architectural works. The main interior design challenge, in these cases, is matching the existing architectural features to a more modern interior design without breaking the bank. So how can you do that?

Depending on the aims and scope of the works as well as the desired design concept, you have numerous solutions to choose from. One of the easiest and cheapest solutions is incorporating the existing architectural features into the new designs. With a bit of creativity, you can transform seemingly unattractive features into a more modern statement. Sanding down a wall to expose the bricklayer below, adding plants and greenery to the decor can create a very modern and rustic look.

When refitting an older building, you might also opt for a more industrial-style interior design concept. Exposed ducts and vents can be repainted in metallic paint, giving the space character and a unique vibe. Adding metal furnishing and fittings with some greenery can help breathe new life into these spaces.

Complicated Floor Plan

Many modern shops, stores and restaurants today are situated in old factory buildings or lofts having a more complex design. Changing the architectural features and designs poses its own challenges, as designers and architects often have to consider whether removing existing walls and features could weaken the existing structure and affect building safety.

Nevertheless, overcoming this interior design challenge is far from impossible. As a first step, you will have to assess the existing floor plan and find common points with the planned design. Consulting with an experienced architect and interior designer is vital during this process. They can evaluate the effect of the proposed changes in terms of building safety. Using modern technology, you can also reinforce existing walls while allowing you to tear down others.

Sudden changes and unforeseen problems

Every shopfitting and interior design project requires time to complete. If you want to revamp or refit your outlet, you probably know how important it is to think ahead and plan. Even so, sudden changes and unforeseen problems can always occur, which often lead to complications and delays. Finding quick solutions and addressing these problems promptly is critical in these cases. While there are no surefire ways to avoid these problems, there are a few things you can do to minimise the risk.

Once the fit-out process starts, it is easy to run into unforeseen problems, such as weakened base structure, mould, etc. that require additional work. While most interior designers and shopfitters can deal with these challenges in a timely manner, sometimes these problems require closer attention. While it is difficult to completely eliminate the risks, you can lower the chances by opting for an on-site survey. A careful analysis of the existing structures allows interior designers and architects to anticipate possible problems and prepare in advance to deal with them. In turn, this will help minimise downtime and avoid additional costs.

Limited budget

We all know that interior design and shopfitting project can become expensive. Working with a limited budget seems like a real interior design challenge that many owners are afraid of. But can you complete interior design projects without compromising quality? And is it possible at all?

Fortunately, there are many things you can do to reduce the costs of a fit-out. Planning ahead, prioritising tasks and upcycling existing fixtures and furnishings are a good starting point. If you are curious to find out how you can do that, make sure you read our tips on how you can reduce the cost of a fit-out.

Need help overcoming these interior design challenges?

In today’s blog post we talked about some of the most common interior design and shopfitting challenges our clients face. We hope that our tips will help you prepare and overcome these challenges efficiently. Nevertheless, you can always turn to professionals for help.

If you have a challenging interior design project ahead, you can always contact our team at Contrast Interiors for help. We employ a team of time-served architects, interior designers, joiners and shopfitters ready to take on any interior design challenge.

Having been in the interior design and shopfitting industry for more than a decade, we know how to solve many of the most challenging interior design problems our clients often face. Be it a partial or full refit, an old or new building, modern or traditional fit-out, our team can help.

Get in touch with us and book a free consultation today. We are always happy to hear from you.