Interior Design Portfolio Tips

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Is there a preferred portfolio format by interior design employers?

The Interior Design Portfolio Format

Trying to decide what format to put your portfolio together in? Creativity is always appreciated, but interior design employers do have a preferred portfolio format they want to see. Syracuse University and the American Society of Interior Designers asked over 500 interior designers, all in a position to hire, what they wanted. Here is what they said were their preferences in an interior design portfolio:

• The preferred format by interior design employers is an 11” x 17” size in a portrait layout.

• Keep the layout as consistent as possible. Avoid changing from portrait to landscape in your portfolio if you can.

• Show anywhere from five to seven projects within twelve to fifteen pages.

   
Are there specifics parts of a project I should put in my interior design portfolio?

What to Put in Your Portfolio for an Interior Design Interview

What you decide to place in your portfolio for an interior design interview depends a lot on your education, background, and skills. However, a hiring interior designer is looking for a few main things. Make sure you show the best work that you can, that proves you have a good level of expertise as an entry-level interior designer. A hiring interior designer will want to see a complete project from the programming phase to completed construction documents. Include floor plans, elevations, renderings, AutoCad drawings, and lighting and electrical plans in your portfolio for an interior design interview.

   
What is an efficient way to keep my portfolio up to date?

Plan Ahead for Your Interior Design Portfolio

One way to keep your interior design portfolio in top form is to plan ahead. Keep your portfolio up to date by keeping samples of your work as you build experience working as an interior designer. Each time you complete a project, remember to maintain copies of your work for your own usage. It's much easier to build your interior design portfolio as you go rather than having to find copies of your work once you're on the job hunt. Remember to always check with the policy of your employer on obtaining additional copies of your work for personal usage.

   
How can I get my interior design portfolio to stand out?

Five Tips to Help You Put Together a Stellar Interior Design Portfolio

When you’re getting ready to interview for an interior design job, you need to have a great interior design portfolio. Remember that having a great portfolio to show at your next interview takes time and effort. Keep these tips in mind before you look for your next interior design job:

• Start with the portfolio case. Pick a case that is professional and representative of the industry and market you’re interviewing for. If you’re sending your resume to a mainstream design firm, go with a basic, nondescript portfolio case. If you’re applying to an edgy, trendy retail store, you might get away with a portfolio case with more pizazz.

• Spend some time to research other portfolios to get an idea of layout and design possibilities.

• Pick pieces representative of your best work. Don’t put in pieces that you have to apologize for.

• Prioritize the order of your portfolio pieces. Don’t simply throw in random examples of your work. Instead, imagine explaining your designs to your potential employer. Pick an exciting piece in the beginning and end of your portfolio.

• Target your portfolio pieces. Make sure that what you put in your interior design portfolio best represents the job you are applying for. Your portfolio doesn’t have to be set in stone. You can change some pieces out for new ones, depending on your job interview.

   
What is an alternative option for creating an interior design portfolio?

Build an Online Interior Design Portfolio

When you put together a portfolio for the next interview, consider creating an online design portfolio in addition to your physical one. Building an online interior design portfolio is one way potential employers can browse through your work before you even step foot in the door for an interview. You'll have the flexibility of showcasing your projects in an interactive format, show off your technological skills, and allow employers to browse through your work at their leisure.

   
How can I get my interior design portfolio to stand out?

Five Tips to Help You Put Together a Stellar Interior Design Portfolio

When you're getting ready to interview for an interior design job, you need to have a great interior design portfolio. Remember that having a great portfolio to show at your next interview takes time and effort. Keep these tips in mind before you look for your next interior design job:

• Start with the portfolio case. Pick a case that is professional and representative of the industry and market you're interviewing for. If you're sending your resume to a mainstream design firm, go with a basic, nondescript portfolio case. If you're applying to an edgy, trendy retail store, you might get away with a portfolio case with more pizazz.

• Spend some time to research other portfolios to get an idea of layout and design possibilities.

• Pick pieces representative of your best work. Don't put in pieces that you have to apologize for.

• Prioritize the order of your portfolio pieces. Don't simply throw in random examples of your work. Instead, imagine explaining your designs to your potential employer. Pick an exciting piece in the beginning and end of your portfolio.

• Target your portfolio pieces. Make sure that what you put in your interior design portfolio best represents the job you are applying for. Your portfolio doesn't have to be set in stone. You can change some pieces out for new ones, depending on your job interview.

   
Should I explain my interior design portfolio during the interview process?

Don't Just Let Your Interior Design Portfolio Do the Talking

When you create your interior design portfolio, the finished product should speak for itself. However, this doesn't mean that you shouldn't contemplate the explanation you'll give during the interview for your work. Before you even step foot into the door to your interview, be prepared with some dialogue. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

• Explain your thought process. Your interviewer wants to know how you arrived at the finished product.

• Walk your interviewer through the requirements of the project. An interior design firm wants to know about your problem solving skills.

• Don't forget to mention details such as fabric choices, lighting, and specific design concepts.

• Leave your interviewer with a good impression by speaking clearly and confidently. An interior design firm is also concerned with your people skills.

   
What options do I have for a portfolio case?

Portfolio Case Basics

Walk into any art store, and likely, you'll see a large array of portfolio case options to choose from. They often come in sizes including 8-1/2”x 11”, 11”x14”, 11” x 17”and larger. Here are some of the options available to put your interior design work in:

• The most common type of portfolio case you'll see is the basic black binder, either in an open book format or as an enclosed zippered portfolio. They come in vinyl or leather.

• An aluminum case is another option for a portfolio. This is a heavier, sturdy option for those who are interested in a stylish, sleeker appearance.

• A translucent poly vinyl carbonate option is another modern choice for those seeking a less ordinary portfolio case. Available in a frosted cover, you have the advantage of a lightweight portfolio that still denotes style.

• Another alternative to display your interior design work is the box portfolio case, which allows your pages to be contained loosely. This type of portfolio comes in a range of surface materials, including aluminum, fabric, and corrugated paper.

   
How can I get my interior design portfolio to stand out?

Five Tips to Help You Put Together a Stellar Interior Design Portfolio

When you're getting ready to interview for an interior design job, you need to have a great interior design portfolio. Remember that having a great portfolio to show at your next interview takes time and effort. Keep these tips in mind before you look for your next interior design job:

• Start with the portfolio case. Pick a case that is professional and representative of the industry and market you're interviewing for. If you're sending your resume to a mainstream design firm, go with a basic, nondescript portfolio case. If you're applying to an edgy, trendy retail store, you might get away with a portfolio case with more pizazz.

• Spend some time to research other portfolios to get an idea of layout and design possibilities.

• Pick pieces representative of your best work. Don't put in pieces that you have to apologize for.

• Prioritize the order of your portfolio pieces. Don't simply throw in random examples of your work. Instead, imagine explaining your designs to your potential employer. Pick an exciting piece in the beginning and end of your portfolio.

• Target your portfolio pieces. Make sure that what you put in your interior design portfolio best represents the job you are applying for. Your portfolio doesn't have to be set in stone. You can change some pieces out for new ones, depending on your job interview.

   
How should I go about putting my portfolio together?

Cater Your Interior Design Portfolio to Your Career Path

Your interior design portfolio is one of the most important aspects of your job application process as an interior designer. Your interior design portfolio shows what you are capable of, what you have had experience doing, your creative thought process, and your organizational skills. To highlight your best interior design skills, streamline the projects you showcase in your portfolio, whether they are class projects or pieces from your interior design career. Here are a few important reminders.

• Only put your best work in your interior design portfolio.

• Research the type of work the firm you are interviewing with does and put in portfolio pieces accordingly.

• Do not put pieces in your portfolio of work you have done if you are not interested doing that type of work in your interior design career.

For instance, if you have no interest in residential design, make sure you do not create a portfolio full of residential design projects.

   
How can I keep my portfolio updated and interesting?

Ways to Add a Fresh Perspective to the Design of Your Portfolio

It can be easy getting stuck in a rut when updating the design of your portfolio. In order to keep your interior design portfolio looking the best that it can, follow these suggestions to improve your presentation:

• Check with your professional organization to see what seminars may be coming up. Often times, you can find seminars where interior design professionals will give advice and critique the design of your portfolio.

• Gather with your classmates or colleagues to have a portfolio critique session. You can get valuable feedback and gain some new insights.

• Check your local library or bookstore in the design section for books on portfolios and design layouts for new and innovative ways to present the design of your portfolio.

   
Are there any specific types of markets employers want to see in my student portfolio?

Top Projects Interior Design Principals Want to See in a Student Portfolio

Want to know what types of projects interior design principals are looking for in a student portfolio? According to a 2005 survey conducted by the American Society of Interior Designers and Syracuse University, these markets are sought after among interior design principals looking to hire recent graduates: residential interiors, office interiors, hospitality, restaurants, retail, and spa design. The important thing to keep in mind is that regardless of the type of work design firms are seeking, always create your student portfolio based on the type of interior design specialty you're seeking work in.

   
How can I get my interior design portfolio to stand out?

Five Tips to Help You Put Together a Stellar Interior Design Portfolio

When you're getting ready to interview for an interior design job, you need to have a great interior design portfolio. Remember that having a great portfolio to show at your next interview takes time and effort. Keep these tips in mind before you look for your next interior design job:

• Start with the portfolio case. Pick a case that is professional and representative of the industry and market you're interviewing for. If you're sending your resume to a mainstream design firm, go with a basic, nondescript portfolio case. If you're applying to an edgy, trendy retail store, you might get away with a portfolio case with more pizazz.

• Spend some time to research other portfolios to get an idea of layout and design possibilities.

• Pick pieces representative of your best work. Don't put in pieces that you have to apologize for.

• Prioritize the order of your portfolio pieces. Don't simply throw in random examples of your work. Instead, imagine explaining your designs to your potential employer. Pick an exciting piece in the beginning and end of your portfolio.

• Target your portfolio pieces. Make sure that what you put in your interior design portfolio best represents the job you are applying for. Your portfolio doesn't have to be set in stone. You can change some pieces out for new ones, depending on your job interview.

   
What types of pieces should I put in my design portfolio?

Show Off your Talents in Your Design Portfolio

A great way to impress a potential interior design employer is to show them that you're capable of doing the work. By putting the right mix of projects in your design portfolio, you can do just that. Make sure you show a combination of conceptual design as well as your completed projects in your design portfolio. Show off your interior design skills by putting in a range of floor plans, lighting plans, renderings, and computer generated work. A well thought out portfolio showcasing your very best interior design skills will help get you hired for that next interior design job.

   
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