A common frustration we have heard when chatting with interior designers is that when they look at the images of completed project they have worked on, they realise that key design features they have specified have been replaced with ‘something vaguely similar, sourced from an alternative supplier’. Rather than having that special piece that draws the whole scheme together and makes it work, there is something else in its place that they do not recognise.
It must be disheartening for a designer, after carefully considering the various options available, and how the different features interact with each other, to finally get to see the finished works and realise that it is not as you had envisaged.
Why do contractors change the specified finishes?
There are many reasons why the build contractor may either be required or choose to change suppliers and/or product specifications. There may be feasibility issues with the design, manufacture, or installation of the finish, there may be a budget shortfall, or the contractor might simply be trying to cut costs and maximise their profits. However, there are also steps the designer can take to mitigate this risk during the design phases.
Key project information to discuss with specialist contractors to maximise the chances of specifies finishes remaining
In this blog, we will look at the key information designers should discuss with contractors to ensure to ensure they see their actual designs come to fruition. As it is our speciality, we will talk from experience and use specialist decorative glass in the following examples:
1) Glass panel location within the design scheme.
This basic one to start off with, but certain products are suitable and will pass BS code requirements when location in one position but will definitely not in another. One example of this would be glass which cannot be toughened (such as stained glass) – it would obviously be totally unsuitable as a shower screen.
2) The maximum glass panel size required.
This one is key as certain designs or styles of glass cannot be made larger than a set size. For example, laminated fabric or metal mesh panels are limited by the production width of the fabric/mesh that is to be laminated.
3) The budget allowed for this glass installation.
For many people, disclosing the budget may seem counter intuitive. However, as a bespoke designer and producer our glass can vary drastically in price points. By discussing the budget when providing the design brief, it ensures that the right products, at the right price point, will be recommended.
4) The project completion date.
If a project has a short completion date, then the risk is that costs may be higher than originally quoted in order to put a rush on things. This could be due to having to purchase raw materials from higher price suppliers quickly, or having to send drivers to collect materials instead of waiting for normal delivery rounds, or needed to pay staff overtime to work longer hours in manufacturing.
If only a partial or guesstimate answer is available to any of these pieces of information, then an informed guess is still better than no information at all and will still increase the odds of your specified finishes being realised.
Daedalian Glass Studios are happy to offer a free 30-minute design consultation via phone or video call to any interior designers, architects or specifiers who with to discuss a project concept. We will sign a non-disclose agreement prior to the consultation if required and provide impartial advice regarding design feasibility, budget, and manufacturing timescale.
To arrange a free design consultation, please email email@example.com.