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6 Ways We’re Different From Your Last Interior Designer


Have you ever worked with a designer you couldn’t wait to say goodbye to? Awk-ward. We’ve had several new clients tell us horror stories about their previous design experiences. All I can say to that is, we’re different. 

Have you ever experienced these 6 cringe-worthy designer faux pas? There’s a better way…

#1. Your last designer didn’t listen to you

You can tell your last designer didn’t listen to you when they present their design plan — ta da! — and it isn’t functional or practical for your lifestyle. Ouch. It’s as if they thought they knew what looked good, and your opinion didn’t matter. How disappointing, especially when you are investing so much time and money into designing your home.

With Coddington

You are at the heart of your home, not us. We are dedicated to crafting a lifestyle experience specifically for you and your family. To do so, we spend considerable time upfront to build strong, trusting relationships with our clients. It’s our job to listen and understand your needs thoroughly and without judgment. We don’t assume. We ask the right questions, and we listen.


From our Beach House project. Photographer: David Duncan Livingston

2. They Didn’t Get Your Style

Did it feel like talking to a brick wall when you spoke to your last designer about your style preferences? Did they raise their eyebrows at your ideas? If your taste and style were ignored or put aside for the designer’s style preferences, you may have been the victim of a designer’s ego. It’s not you, it’s them.

At Coddington

It’s only after we get to know you well that we will start to create your custom design. And because we’ve spent time building a relationship with you, we can present design choices that align with your style. We also don’t purchase a single item or move on with the project until you approve your custom design. 

And if there’s any element of the design that doesn’t feel right to you, tell us! Open door policy over here. We have thick skin and will be happy to adjust your design to perfectly fit your style.


From our San Francisco Style Project. Photographer: David Duncan Livingston

3. They Couldn’t Answer Simple Questions

There’s nothing more frustrating than posing a question to the designer in charge of your project, and getting crickets. Or the diplomatic non-answer that you see right through. When it comes to home, simple questions are not simple and easily brushed aside. They are a big deal, because they usually have to do with timeline and budgeting.

How much longer do you really have to share the hallway bathroom with your entire family? (I hear ya.) How much can you expect to spend? These Q’s need clear A’s. 

With Coddington

One of our core values is “No Haziness,” which means you will always know what we are working on and how much it will cost before any purchases are made. We tell it like it is, and that means talking openly about your budget and project timelines. Keeping a clear line of communication ensures that you know you have a savvy designer on your side, keeping you in the loop. Communication = trust. Trust = results.


From our San Francisco Style Project. Photographer: David Duncan Livingston

4. Your Last Designer Didn’t Take Responsibility

As designers, we do our very best to create renderings and layouts that give you an accurate feeling of each element and piece in the room. However, as a project comes together, a piece may come into the room, and it just doesn’t light up your life like it did in the renderings. That’s okay. It’s normal. 

What isn’t normal? Your last designer may have left those imperfect pieces and shirked responsibility for items you didn’t like. Then, you’re stuck with an item that feels off in your space, and each time you enter the room, it’s a reminder of that negative experience. That’s not peaceful. Or good client care.

With Coddington

It’s our goal to design with your JOY in mind — yes, just like Marie Kondo. (Love her.) Leaving you with a piece that feels off in your space doesn’t bring you joy and doesn’t sit right with us either. Translation: It’s gotta go.

We are always happy to replace one or two items at no charge. You may even call us years after the project to discuss anything that isn’t wearing well. We genuinely care about your happiness.


From our San Francisco Style Project. Photographer: David Duncan Livingston

5. They Were Disorganized and Missed Details

Having a disorganized interior designer is like that messy professor you had in college. Their desk was stacked high with papers, and when you went to their office to ask about your essay, their fumbled answer made you wonder if they had read your paper at all. (They didn’t.)

Unfortunately, you may have experienced this feeling with a disorganized designer as well. There doesn’t seem to be a clear system, rhyme, or reason to their process — or lack thereof. And with that disorganization comes missed deadlines and details that cost you money and time. Pass.

With Coddington

Working with an interior designer should give you complete peace of mind. We organize and thoughtfully manage our projects and teams. In fact, project management makes up 80-90% of what we do, and we’re more than good at it. It’s what makes us stand out and what keeps clients coming back again and again.

P.S. Because we are so organized and efficient, we naturally save you time and money. You’re welcome. 


From our San Francisco Style Project. Photographer: David Duncan Livingston

6. They Don’t Get Repeat business

After a bad experience with a designer, would you go back? I think I know the answer. You trusted the designer with your money and home. Now you’re stuck with impractical design choices you didn’t want in the first place. You will never go back again. And with good reason.

With Coddington

We know that investing with Coddington Design is worth every penny because our clients return again and again. But you don’t have to take it from us…

“I’ve worked with [Coddington Design] off and on for almost 5 years, with our most recent project involving a year-long remodel of my San Francisco house. The end result is not only gorgeous, but it is efficient.”

— Dina T., San Francisco

I think that says it all, don’t you? If you’re ready for a designer you can trust, why not get to know us? Book a no-strings-attached discovery call with us, and let’s chat.



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