Cerulean Design & Decor

about cerulean


The Cerulean Design Process keeps you in-the-know at all times. It allows us to work through a checklist and ensure your design is what you want. And most of all, it eases the stress of renovating your home or room. We want our clients to always feel relaxed and comfortable with the decision they have made to hire Cerulean to design and decorate their homes.

My clients come to me overwhelmed with looking at fabrics and furniture, visiting showroom after showroom, looking at pictures on Google, and getting a hundred-and-one opinions from every Tom, Dick and Harry. They’ve changed their mind every day on which direction they want to go. When I arrive at their home there is invariably masking tape on the floor showing where things could go! I love clients like this because I know I can help them! By the end of the first meeting, they have begun to trust me. And you will too!

Below is an outline of my design process and I’ve included images of work I have done. I would be happy to discuss this in more detail in person.

I am pretty easy going….if you are too, let’s work together!

Pre-Project Stuff

Meet + Greet Questionnaire: Once we set up a time to meet, you will receive questions related to your project. This helps our meeting become focused on the project.

The Meet + Greet:  We review your project needs and I put you at ease. And I’ll ask you a bunch of other questions and you can ask me some too.  I will show you some of my recent work as it pertains to your project. This helps you see the type of documents that I would create for you, further putting you at ease.

References:  I will encourage you to call my clients and ask about me. In the meantime, you can visit my reviews on Google to get an idea if my clients like me. They do, just so you know!

Business Stuff:  If you decided to hire me, this is where we get down to business. We will go through my contract line by line, project scope and fees. Sounds boring…but let me assure you that the contract serves both of us, not just me.

Once the contract is signed then I ask for a payment of 50% of the fees. The other 50% is due once the project is completed. I like to keep it simple. And did I say that I work on flat fees? This way, you know how much it will cost and there will be no surprises in the end. 

The Launch

Congratulations! I am so happy we will be working together on your renovation or design project. Now the work begins…for you have homework to do! Clients are usually excited about the homework because they know things are happening.

I will send you a detailed email outlining the tasks that you must do before our Design Meeting. Things like…

In-Depth Questionnaire:  This is where we go into detail about your lifestyle, design style, and more questions about the project.

Pinterest Board:  Collecting images of spaces you love gives me an even better idea of your design style. We will review these images and I’ll ask you what you love about them. So be ready to answer!

A Budget Worksheet:  I specifically create one for your project so you can see all that will be involed. And yes, I will need to know your budget. And I will ask you outright (I’m not one to shy away from talking money). The only way I can help you is knowing how much you are willing to spend as it will direct my design development. And I will certainly let you know if your budget is not sufficient. Most people do not realize how much things cost, but that is where I come in.

All of the above are due 4 days before our Design Meeting. This gives me a chance to review it, ask for clarification if needed and get ready for our meeting. 

Design Meeting:  An intense working meeting where we nail down a lot of stuff and I ask a ton more questions as we review your homework. It usually lasts about 2 hours. I am usually pleasantly exhausted following this meeting, as are my clients. Before I leave, we will set up another meeting as we launch into our next step – Design Development.

My clients trust me and have confidence in me

as their design partner in their renovation or redecorating project.

Phase 2: Design Development

So depending on your project – full renovation, a new kitchen or simply a built-in design for your living room – these steps may be customized to reflect your needs.

The Plans:  If you require a new floor plan, a built-in design, a space plan for new furniture, a kitchen or bath plan, this is where I get technical! I actually enjoy this part. I will take detailed measurements of your space so I can recreate it in my Home Designer Pro software. From this plan, I can begin to modify it based on your needs identified in the Design meeting.

The floor plan is to scale and shows the size and position of each piece of furniture. The rendering of the built-in allows the client to “see” it  before it is built. 

We will work together to ensure your new space is functional and addresses all your needs. We will refine it until it is perfect (within reason, that is…I usually do two main revisions, followed by tweaking the design details.)

Design Development and Refinements:  If you are doing a full renovation or one room renovation, I will develop mood boards that reflect the style you have indicated in your questionnaire. A mood board contains a selection of items that represent the look and feel of your room. By choosing the board that best reflects what you want, I can then begin to choose materials that will reflect this style.

The above mood boards show two different “feels” for a mid-century kitchen. The client chose the Rustic Mid-Century, which made choosing finishes I knew they would like.

This is where the design begins to come to life!  I will source a selection of samples that will serve the design and together we will choose the design elements of your space, for example flooring, cabinetry, lighting, etc. I will bring you through this process, explaining why I selected each element. In the end everything comes together in a beautiful design! And we actually have lots of fun in the process. And I do all the work!

The Design Guide: This is a full and complete Design Guide that you can hand over to your General Contractor. It will have everything you need too implement all aspects of your project.

The Design Guide contains the final floor plan, elevations, the final design, complete with the schedules for your design. You will receive numerous documents that will detail all your selections – colour, size, product number, manufacturer, cost at time of sourcing, and where it was sourced. You will also, if applicable, receive an electrical plan, reflected ceiling plan (lighting), paint plan, flooring plan, tile plan (usually if there is a decorative piece involved). 

The Reflected Ceiling Plan is ideal for electricians as it locates each light and identifies the type of switch you want. A lighting schedule accompanies this plan and lists each light and details of its location.

The Flooring plan above shows the size and position of tile inlays. It is document like this that make your General Contractors job sooo much easier!

I bring peace of mind to my clients and take that overwhelming feeling away.

Final Payment:  Once the Design Guide is approved, the final 50% payment will be made.

NOTE: if you are looking for full service interior design services, the process is about the same. Read about my Elite Design + Sourcing where I create the design, source all furniture and accessories AND purchase them on your behalf. How’s that for elite service?

Phase 3: Design Management

The Design Management service is optional and is charged on an hourly basis. You will receive a weekly report on any hours incurred but payment is not required until the final walk through.

Sourcing Quotes:  I can assist in obtaining estimates from general contractors and other trades by attending meetings with you, managing the estimates to ensure they include all costs, and doing a walk through of the existing space.

GC Meeting:  I believe in open communication between designer and the contractor and trades. Meeting with the team to review the design plan and documents is essential to the design being implemented the way you want it. I will review the details with the GC, electrician, plumber, and any installers (flooring, tiles, cabinetry, etc).

Construction/Renovation:  During the actual renovation, I will be available for any questions or site visits. If you are from out of town, it is important that your designer is able to visit the site weekly, if not more, to identify any design issues or concerns with the quality of work. 

My clients know I am there to help them

and I will go above and beyond to do so.

Phase 4: The Final Stuff

Deficiencies:  It is important to have an eye for detail when doing the final walk through…something I have and will benefit you greatly. I will join you and your GC on the final review and point out any concerns I have with the final work.

Final Payment:  We collect the payment for Design Management services.

Feedback:  I will provide you with a final questionnaire to gain feedback on how you liked working with me, my processes, quality of work, etc. I will also ask you to complete a Google Review as well.