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Reviews (35)

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George S

19 July 2019

We had a great experience with Design Inside! Our project went from February to July of 2019. Our designer Emmalie was wonderful! She was very accommodating of our schedule and very focused on providing us great direction on all the things we had to make decisions on, and there were a lot of them! She took the time to get to know us and our style and really gave us great direction. Our project was extensive, as we completely renovated a 3 bed 2 bath condo and the only things not touched were the 2 baths (fixtures and tile). Other than those, all paint, lighting, full kitchen (including appliances), and hardwood floors throughout were completely redone. We also liked that they will help you as much or as little as you like. You set the terms of what you would like them to help with. They helped us with all design decisions and their guidance was wonderful! We highly recommend Design Inside! More...

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Sandra Blakemore

9 January 2018

I really enjoyed working with Angela Murphy from Design Inside. I couldn't have completed my bedroom update and kitchen update without Angela. I was really busy with work and it was helpful to have her narrow down the choices for me and give me a professional guidance on how to update and add new selections to my existing decor. I felt she really listened to me and understood my style well. Angela brought a good range of choices for each item I needed. She was great when I had an emergency issue with an appliance. She helped me through the issue during off-hours. Angela completed the project on-time and on-budget. The contractors she used were very professional and perfectionists. I will be working with her again on future projects. More...

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Rebecca Pinney

5 December 2017

We are very pleased with our bathroom remodel. Our original 30 year old guest bath was brought into this century featuring a traditional style with some more modern touches in the tile surround and the mirror. Angie made the process very easy. We will definitely use Design Inside for future design projects. More...

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Joanna W.

16 November 2017

I highly recommend Design Inside. Kathryn & Bill are extremely professional and easy to work with. I had a very pleasant experience with them and will use Design Inside in the future!

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Joanna

16 November 2017

I highly recommend Design Inside. Kathryn & Bill are extremely professional and easy to work with. I had a very pleasant experience with them and will use Design Inside in the future!

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Neil P.

4 November 2017

We've worked with Katy and Bill for over 10 years now, starting with our townhouse remodel, then on a remodel of our current single family home and most recently on furnishings for a vacation property. They are talented, honest and so friendly. They are both wonderful to work with, and very adaptable- our styles and choices have changed over the years and they've given us suggestions we love every time. They have been there for us every step on the way on our projects, even coming over to hang artwork and give suggestions on small decorative details. We will definitely work with Katy & Bill again in the future and can recommend Design Inside without any hesitation. More...

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Mary W

21 October 2017

Katy is the perfect mix of practical and design savvy. In our first meeting, Katy helped me where to prioritize my projects for the biggest impact. In addition to directing me on where to invest dollars and where we could save.

We worked on several areas of my home in tandem...living room, hallway, master bedroom and guest room. Not to mention storage ideas and thoughts on future bathroom projects. The process was seamless and easy. We put a plan together in a few hours and we were off to the races.

One of the most enjoyable experiences in working with Katy was the ability for me to add my own personal touches along the way. She really adapts to her clients in terms of how involved they would like to be. For me, I had lots of ideas that Katy helped me bring to life, streamline and balance. And she also encouraged me to take chances with paint colors, fabric upholstery choices and more.

My gallery wall is one of my favorites! I could never have measured and hung with such precision. And my reupholstered hallway bench is one of my favorite stand-out pieces. Thanks Katy!

I love Katy’s design eye, easy-to-work with attitude and desire to put her client’s style into every choice. My condo is finally a home! Love it!

I highly recommend working with Design Inside and I plan on doing so for my next projects!
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Matthew F.

18 October 2017

In depth, knowledgeable, and able to adapt to your tastes.  I used Design Inside for a good portion of a condo and was very pleased with the finished product.

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Dorothy Jackson

18 July 2017

We needed to redecorate our living room. My husband found Design Inside on the internet. I was a bit hesitant about finding a decorator that way; but we had a fantastic experience with Emily Barry from Design Inside, and love our "new" room! She is not only a wonderful person, but a good listener and problem solver. Emily won't stop until she finds the option you want. When concerns or problems arose; she not only listened to them attentively, she solved them as quickly as possible. When Emily had a death in the family; one of her colleagues, from Design Inside, stepped in and did a wonderful job. I can't recommend Emily Barry, of Design Inside, highly enough! More...

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Felisa

8 July 2017

I loved working with Katy to redesign my painfully small master bathroom! She was on the ball, organized, and prompt with getting the project started and keeping it going. I was most impressed by her ability to precisely figure out what I meant the space to look and feel like. I don't do "design" talk and she really got to the heart of what I identified as our problems and had great ideas on how to fix them. The best part was that her ideas were not overly complicated, just things I would have never thought. She also didn't bat an eye when I asked her to find more budget friendly options. I will be working with Katy for additional help in other areas of the house and already recommend her without hesitation. More...

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Erin Metroff

5 March 2017

We worked with Design Inside over the course of a year on projects that continued to expand because we were so thrilled with the process, working relationship and outcomes. We used Kathryn's design expertise to remodel our kitchen, first-floor full bathroom, and front porch.

Working with Design Inside was money well-spent because Kathryn is talented in both technical and creative design. She measured and prepared for every contingency when creating a plan to transform our galley-style kitchen into an expanded and multi-purpose open-concept design that included kitchen, mudroom, and work space. She was efficient in helping us make design choices to update our bathroom, and concise with material recommendations and measurements needed to replace our front porch.

Kathryn and her team were respectful of our time, budget, and input. Every selection for purchase was presented as a choice, and we knew we were always guided to the best price point. Kathryn recommended when to pay for quality materials, and helped us find savings in other parts of the design to off-set the cost. We are most happy with the selections we would not have made without her involvement.

We could not have completed our home remodel without Design Inside, and would happily recommend them to anyone looking for guidance on small or large projects!
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Rosemary G.

27 June 2015

Courtney from Design Inside helped us create our urban oasis in the West Loop.  She did color selection, space planning and made furniture recommendations.  Courtney was respectful of our time and budget, and super easy to work with.  Project actually came in under budget, and Courtney promptly returned the remaining balance of our deposit.  I would recommend Design Inside to anyone looking for interior design services.- Pete and Ann G. More...

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plgraves56

27 June 2015

We needed design help with a condo in the West Loop. We found Design Inside and Courtney helped us with color selection, furniture and finishes. She was especially helpful with artwork and accessories. We were very pleased with the result! Courtney was a pleasure to work with, and Design Inside is a great choice for contemporary design.
Pete and Ann G.
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Chris C.

16 April 2015

Working with the folks at Design Inside has been a wonderful experience. I worked mostly with Abigail on a few rooms in my house and a small job at my mother's. Abigail is talented, responsive and an overall pleasure to work with. The time and expense I put into their services resulted in rooms we are very happy with and I spent my money much more effectively than had I tried to do it on my own. We designed a room for the kids to play in/recreation area, redid a powder room and came up with plans for LR/DR and two bedrooms. I'll use them again for sure. More...

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Jody P.

16 April 2015

We worked with Abigail to design our dining room and our bedroom, as well as to pick paint colors throughout the house.  Everything was great.  She was very easy to work with and communicated well.  Listened to our requests and with our input, we came up with design ideas to suit our family's needs.  She worked to keep things within our budget and worked hard to get everything accomplished in a timely manner.  We are very happy with the results and can't wait to start working on other parts of the house. More...

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Jennifer G.

24 February 2014

We used Design Inside for our recent condo renovation, and we were pleased with our designer, Abigail.  We had looked into three or four design firms and went with Design Inside because we got along well with Abigail from the initial consultation.  She's friendly and had suggestions from our first meetings.  Our remodeling scope was pretty basic (resurface hardwood floors, install new tiling, new lighting, new kitchen countertops/backsplash/hardware, painting, etc.)  We weren't planning on taking down any walls or putting up new walls - hence "pretty basic" in our eyes! The initial few weeks involved back and forth with designs and occasional meetings with Abigail so she could get a handle on what we wanted done.  Abigail was accommodating with meeting/phone times, and would often meet with us late afternoons or early evening.  She created designs we had never thought of doing (enclosing in structural poles, wainscoting, etc).  Abigail also was able to easily "read" my husband and I in terms of color schemes and we ended up choosing one of the first few samples of tiling and backsplash that she dropped off with us.  Kudos for that!  Abigail also provided us bimonthly hours summary / detail so we knew how much we were being charged for her services.  She would break down the time she spent working for us by the minute and it was helpful to see where our dollars were being spent.From a "grand overall design", Abigail did a good job, but when we started getting into the details in the later phases, we did run into a few minor issues.  I recommend ordering all materials / furniture / art yourself and not going thru Design Inside.   With a little work on the intranet, you can find it cheaper, not to mention a lower delivery charge.  We had a few material mix-ups with Design Inside - i.e. we received the wrong hardware; not enough tile or grout was ordered.  Abigail's measurements for the den were incorrect so she didn't order enough tile / grout  - her measurements for the wallpaper were also off, but this time we almost ordered too much.    The invoice system used by Design Inside is a little confusing and you should pay very close attention and track your own expenses.  It's hard to describe but trying to track all the bills and refunds with the invoices provided was difficult.  Overall - I would recommend Design Inside and Abigail for your remodeling needs.  I would just offer a bit of advice to double check measurements and order your own materials, but would still recommend the company.  Abigail provided different designs and options that demonstrated her design skills as well as her ability to connect with us in terms of what our goal of the remodel was.  In our eyes, that was key. More...

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Lara R.

25 October 2013

We contacted Design Inside because we couldn't decide on paint colors and backsplash tiles for our new condo. Abigail came for our consult full of ideas and prepared with samples. Once we settled on a few ideas, she had samples ordered for us and contacted several different tile stores to pull samples. Throughout the process, we frequently reached out to Abigail and she was extremely prompt in her response and always willing to help. We really felt like she went above and beyond to help us.Overall, we were very pleased with our experience. And, the price was great! More...

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Andrew J.

8 March 2013

A Big Yelp Woohoo! As good as it gets!Design Inside recently helped me redefine my living room/dining room areas, and man does it look good.  Kathryn and her team were excellent to work with throughout the process.  I have a very sporadic work schedule but they were able to patiently bob and weave to get everything done.  I am very happy with the outcome and a hidden bonus is that now I am in touch with some excellent craftsmen as well.The only downside is I have to fess up to receiving help from Design Inside when I get compliments from my friends...Thanks Kathryn and everyone at D.I.!!!!AJ More...

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Alex L.

5 February 2013

I can't say enough good things about working with Bill and Katy. I hired them about 4 years ago for work on my master bed and bath, and then 2 years later for the rest of my place. They did fantastic work, and I continue to get compliments on my place... people are surprised that a single guy living alone can have such a nice place. Almost offensively so, now that I think about it.A couple of things stand out when you work with the two of them, besides how nice, professional, and accommodating they are.The stagegate process. Given that this was my first time hiring professionals to help decorate, I really appreciated that at each step in the process I could change it, stop, or continue going. Much different from some of the other designers I talked to.The way I was presented options. I never felt like I had to do something a specific way, and if I didn't like the options presented they would go back and find other ones - they really wanted me to feel like it was "mine". But when I was stumped they would offer up their personal opinions on what would look best. Even though I'll joke to friends that "all I did was pay for it," it definitely feels like something I would have done if I had the ability to.That they would do as much or as little as I wanted in managing the work itself, and at very reasonable rates.Have I mentioned how nice they are?If I move I will hire them again. It's that simple. More...

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Patricia D.

5 February 2013

I once read that when it comes to service, you can get two of the following, but never three: speed, quality, and cost effectiveness. Kathryn and her team at Design Inside prove that it's actually possible to get all three! I was astounded that Design Inside was able to design a beautiful and unique space for my family so quickly. The turn-around on scheduling an appointment and having Design Inside produce a plan was less than two weeks. (folks, THAT'S OUTRAGEOUSLY FAST! Of course, mine may be a unique case; but judging by the air of normalcy, I'm inclined to say that speed is something Design Inside prides themselves on.) But not only was the plan beautiful and unique, it was delivered and presented with professionalism and clarity. Design Inside both mailed and hand-delivered the plans; the Senior Designer, Kathryn, took the time to explain them to me in layman's terms; she cheerfully answered all my questions and elaborated when she sensed I was confused or not entirely seeing her vision. Finally, I was impressed with Design Inside's pricing. Of course, there are a lot of folks out there who don't seem fazed by prices. After all, if you even have the luxury of *Thinking* about an interior designer, you must be loaded, right? But I am neither loaded nor unfazed by prices; I just have a respect for beauty and enough sense to know when it's time to call in the experts!  Money matters to me, and I want to keep my money. Kathryn and her team were reasonable, fair, and cost-conscious. In all, I just felt like they were working with me every step of the way. I'm quite impressed and look forward to moving ahead with them. More...

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Patricia Droz

5 February 2013

I once read that when it comes to service, you can get two of the following, but never three: speed, quality, and cost effectiveness. Kathryn and her team at Design Inside prove that it's actually possible to get all three! I was astounded that Design Inside was able to design a beautiful and unique space for my family so quickly. The turn-around on scheduling an appointment and having Design Inside produce a plan was less than two weeks. (folks, THAT'S OUTRAGEOUSLY FAST! Of course, mine may be a unique case; but judging by the air of normalcy, I'm inclined to say that speed is something Design Inside prides themselves on.)

But not only was the plan beautiful and unique, it was delivered and presented with professionalism and clarity. Design Inside both mailed and hand-delivered the plans; the Senior Designer, Kathryn, took the time to explain them to me in layman's terms; she cheerfully answered all my questions and elaborated when she sensed I was confused or not entirely seeing her vision.

Finally, I was impressed with Design Inside's pricing. Of course, there are a lot of folks out there who don't seem fazed by prices. After all, if you even have the luxury of *Thinking* about an interior designer, you must be loaded, right? But I am neither loaded nor unfazed by prices; I just have a respect for beauty and enough sense to know when it's time to call in the experts! Money matters to me, and I want to keep my money. Kathryn and her team were reasonable, fair, and cost-conscious. In all, I just felt like they were working with me every step of the way. I'm quite impressed and look forward to moving ahead with them.
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aplattin

5 February 2013

I can't say enough good things about working with Bill and Katy. I hired them about 4 years ago for work on my master bed and bath, and then 2 years later for the rest of my place. They did fantastic work, and I continue to get compliments on my place… people are surprised that a single guy living alone can have such a nice place. Almost offensively so, now that I think about it.

A couple of things stand out when you work with the two of them, besides how nice, professional, and accommodating they are.

The stagegate process. Given that this was my first time hiring professionals to help decorate, I really appreciated that at each step in the process I could change it, stop, or continue going. Much different from some of the other designers I talked to.
The way I was presented options. I never felt like I had to do something a specific way, and if I didn't like the options presented they would go back and find other ones - they really wanted me to feel like it was "mine". But when I was stumped they would offer up their personal opinions on what would look best. Even though I'll joke to friends that "all I did was pay for it," it definitely feels like something I would have done if I had the ability to.
That they would do as much or as little as I wanted in managing the work itself, and at very reasonable rates.
Have I mentioned how nice they are?

If I move I will hire them again. It's that simple.
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Joyce Bongard

2 February 2013

Everyone we worked with at Design Inside were respectful of our ideas, time and budget. Not knowing much about how to design a mudroom, they brought some fresh ideas to the table. We decided on a concept that worked well with the space and met all of our needs.

So if you have an idea but can't seem to figure out all the details - then call Design Inside. They will help make your concept a reality!
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davethetruth

2 February 2013

Interior design can be one of the more overwhelming things in life. I was extremely apprehensive getting help decorating my new home, but I couldn't do it confidently on my own. I feel like I know when things look good but I can't put it together myself. I've heard so many horror stories about decorators not worrying about how much you spend and just rushing through the job. Design Inside was NOT like this at all! I honestly couldn't be happier with how things turned out. Design Inside makes things look and feel amazing while always monitoring how much you're spending is the best way I can sum up my experience. Both Bill and Katy are extremely nice and made the whole experience actually enjoyable. Next time I move, I will absolutely have them help me again. I recommend them without hesitation. You will not be disappointed.

Dave
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Nick Yecke

29 January 2013

I've worked with Design Inside on multiple occasions now, they're fantastic. From picking paint colors, to hanging art, arranging furniture and even adding a new bar area in the basement.

From start to finish the Design Inside team has an incredible design style, is very very respectful of budget and are great communicators. I personally really enjoy interior design and the team worked with my tastes and opinions very openly, a great experience. I will work with Design Inside again in the future, there's no doubt.

Some photos of one of the projects: http://designinsidechicago.com/post/wicker-park-family-room-wet-bar/
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David G.

22 February 2012

Interior design can be one of the more overwhelming things in life.  I was extremely apprehensive getting help decorating my new home, but I couldn't do it confidently on my own.  I feel like I know when things look good but I can't put it together myself.  I've heard so many horror stories about decorators not worrying about how much you spend and just rushing through the job.  Design Inside was NOT like this at all!  I honestly couldn't be happier with how things turned out. Design Inside makes things look and feel amazing while always monitoring how much you're spending is the best way I can sum up my experience. Both Bill and Katy are extremely nice and made the whole experience actually enjoyable.  Next time I move, I will absolutely have them help me again.  I recommend them without hesitation.  You will not be disappointed. More...

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Larry S.

26 June 2011

The talent that Kathryn has for interior design is second to none.The way she can select colors for any home and decor ,and also for any home layout, is truly amazing. With  vast knowledge of interior design of furiture and window treatments, your house will have that pop look you have always wanted. I would recommend Kathryn and her team to any one I know. Great priceing , great end results ,and a great personality, what a combination. More...

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Brad O.

6 April 2011

I could not imagine having a more positive experience with interior designers than I had with Katy and Bill. They worked around my busy work schedule and met with me on evenings and weekends. Katy quickly assessed my personal style and brought me a handful of fantastic options for each item that I requested. The paint colors and tile she selected were perfect, and she found an amazing convertible living room table that gets compliments from every guest in my home. Also, because Design Inside charges by the hour (rather than as a percentage of purchases), they had no incentive to 'upsell' me to more expensive tile, fixtures, or furniture. The total cost of my redesign was very reasonable and within the budget I communicated to Katy and Bill. Perhaps most impressive, Katy managed the entire execution of the redesign on my behalf. I travel for work 3-4 days a week, so Katy received all deliveries and managed all subcontractors on my behalf. I would arrive home each week to see more of my condo transformed. It couldn't have been easier. Katy and Bill are consummate professionals, and I recommend them unconditionally - especially for first-time interior design users. More...

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S M.

24 September 2010

If it weren't for Design Inside, my husband and I would still be sitting on folding chairs and sleeping on an air mattress a year after moving into our new condo.  Soon after buying our place, we took one trip to a mammoth furniture store and quickly realized we had no idea where to begin.  Furniture, artwork, rugs, window treatments - we were completely overwhelmed with all the options out there.  I called Design Inside based on their reviews and their website, and a couple days later Bill and Kathryn came over to do a walkthrough.  They had such good ideas for every room and were extremely flexible with our budget constraints, style preferences, and timeline.  On top of their incredible design expertise, they are just a pleasure to work with.  They did an amazing job turning our house into a home, and we are very thankful we made that call to them. More...

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Teresa F.

4 May 2010

My husband and I have never had an eye for colors or decorating so we hired Design Inside to work on our apartment and help with our home office.  What started off as work on a small office eventually became a redesign of our whole place (not to mention my husband's office) because they were so amazing and beyond reasonable!  Katy makes you feel at ease and helps you figure out your style instead of pushing an agenda on you.  Never did they make us feel awkward when we'd have to reevaluate an idea and stick with a budget.  In fact, Katy would offer up a range of options at different price points and helped us figure out ways to make the most out of what we already owned.  Everyone who has seen our place has been blown away with what Katy did.  Her ideas, eye for design, and personality just make her a joy to work with.  We will use her every chance we get and recommend her to everyone. More...

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David K.

12 April 2010

Fantastic. I had hired someone who took a lot of my money and left my bathroom looking like crap. I feared I'd just have to live with it, but I decided a little more money might help. I contacted Design Inside and they responded right a way. Kathryn came out, looked at the room, quickly explained what was wrong, and named a number of possible fixes: from paint to larger choices. She then left and told me she'd work out some of the possibilities. Little did I expect a box with tiles choices and paint chips and text explaining what with what delivered to my door. Fantastic. We spoke a number of times and she listened was remarkable articulate. This was the best money I spend on the entire bathroom and my only wish is that I had called them first. I cannot praise these people enough. More...

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C H.

22 December 2009

Design Inside was exactly what we were looking for when the need to do some interior renovations became evident.  We knew we wanted a creative solution of high quality and good value.  This was our first time working with an interior designer and we went in with some trepidation, not knowing what to expect to spend or how we should expect to be treated as a young couple in a nice yet modest two bedroom condo (rather than the wealthy owner of a single family home who was looking to overhaul an entire floor).  The Chernes treated us like their one and only clients (though we knew we weren't), were forthright about probable expenses (going above and beyond in their estimates when asked), and came up with a creative solution after only spending 10 minutes in our home.  Along with their own expertise and just plain fun personalities, they also brought on board a fabulous husband-and-wife contractor team who were equally as excellent in the quality of their work.  Without the Chernes, we never would've identified these contractors on our own.  Kathryn added on some services midway through our project at my request, sleuthing out the perfect fabric for a chair I wanted to reupholster with all the seriousness of looking for the holy grail.  We are so happy with their work and only wish we had additional needs on which to seek their expertise.  Now how many people say that about their interior designers?  I wouldn't hesitate to recommend Design Inside to someone looking for an inspired, kind interior design team who brings high quality and excellent value to the table. More...

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Tom C.

12 December 2009

We contacted Design Inside because we were having difficultly picking out colors for our new condo.  We had never used a designer before and after using them I will call them any time we need any major work done.  They exceeded our expectations in every way and did a great job of finding out what our style was before they even started working.  Their fee is more than reasonable and they even helped us pick out fixtures via email for no charge. We probably even saved money by using them because I know we would have spent a lot on buying paint samples.  This doesn't even include the time and hassle of the process.  Hands down this is some of the best money I've spend on my condo. Thanks Bill and Kathryn. More...

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Robert J.

24 January 2009

I worked with Bill and Katy and they were absolutely fantastic.  They did a great job of identifying my style and blending it with their initial vision.  They did an incredible job of staying within my set budget and allowed me to make my own purchases, saving me a ton of money versus other designers.They interfaced with the contractor where necessary and stuck with the project to the very end.  At the end of the day, obviously the owner has final approval on everything so if something looks 'waiting room' like someone else commented, its because the owner made that final decision.I really can not speak highly enough of not just their design work but the designers as people.  Emails at all hours of the day/night are common because they will do what it takes to meet a deadline.  They will also do whatever it takes to get the project completed - no matter what it means.If you are designing on a budget as I was, I HIGHLY recommend Design Inside and quite frankly, can not speak highly enough of them. More...

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Beatrize N.

13 May 2008

Everyone can benefit from some professional help and this includes our homes.  A home if it doesn't feel right can cause you some anxiety and life is already fraught with enough stress.  Who needs more when they walk through their front door?  Not me!    It should be a haven from the stress ball world and filled with the things you like to have around you, after all it is the one environment that you can control.  Kathryn and Bill are the house therapists and they can help you get your stuff together in a non-threatening way. They are really nice, down to earth people, not stuck up designers who only work in certain zip codes.  They never made me feel bad and I was really inspired to start working on my place.So you can only afford Ikea but have caviar tastes..they'll work with you, just be brave and pick up that phone and have them come by.  I promise you won't have to sell a kidney to have a nice place. More...

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