Starting Your Project Part 3: Inspiration

This is the fun part and where everyone usually starts. Before you meet with a designer or start shopping on your own, you need to gather a little more information on what you are looking for and the space you are envisioning. Not only will this focus your vision, but will allow you to easily relay your vision to others.

Photo by Pixabay on

A couple great places to start are Pinterest and Houzz. These sites allow you to gather your thoughts all in one place. By looking through photos, you can really dial in your likes and dislikes.

I recommend spending a couple hours saving or pining photos that you like, then go back through them and look for the similarities. Take notes about what you like and dislike about each photo. Dislikes are just as important as they will help you communicate to your designer your true vision. Even if you don’t use a designer, it will help to focus your search when it is time to find materials.

You can also use shopping sites to help you pull your look together. Often times manufacturers will have used designers to showcase their items in a space. You can use this to copy the look. For example:

Say I fell in love with this sink above. As you can see, there are some elements that the manufacturers designers have paired with it that go well. Since you already love the sink, you could use this photo as inspiration and make your like /dislike list.


  • Tile Backsplash
  • Faucet


  • Cabinets
  • Cabinet Hardware

You should create something similar for each of your inspiration photos. This allows your designer to get a feel for what you looking for. You may be thinking, why hire a designer if I need to do all of the inspiration work? You can leave it all in the hands of your designer, but spending a few hours at the beginning of the project will save you both a lot of billable time and truly get a space that reflects your style. After all, it will be you living in the space, not your designer.

Make sure to check out our other posts in this series:

Starting Your Project Part 1: Budget

Starting Your Project Part 2: Timeline

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