The best interior designers in Canberra

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A black modern kitchen.

DNA Architects has been designing Canberra interiors since 2001. Photo: Supplied.

Perhaps you’re starting a new build in Greenway? Maybe you’re renovating a period home in Kingston? You might be looking to spruce up your office in Dickson? Or are just plain frustrated by the lack of inspiration that your current space offers?

Either way, it sounds like your lack lustre interiors are in desperate need of an overhaul. And, with many of us spending more time at home than ever before, now feels like the right time to act. While most of us recognise that functional spaces transform how we live for the better; we are generally challenged as to how.

This challenge typically poses more questions that it does answers. What are the tricks to maximising space? How can different styles be seamlessly blended? Where can we source one-of-a-kind pieces? And, who can point us in the direction of first class trades? Undoubtedly, these hurdles are better dealt with by the professionals.

Fortunately, an entire profession exists to service these exact needs. Let me introduce you to Canberra’s interior designers. Interior designers are masters of creating spaces that suit the way we live. Furthermore, they are highly skilled professionals who have undergone years of professional training to transform empty spaces into functional wonderlands – that look beautiful too!

In a world where form often trumps function, the challenge is finding the right designer for you. Why? Because finding the right designer will help to steer your interior dreams into a reality. But where does one find these interior oracles? I’m glad you asked! With this in mind we have put together a list of the best designers that Canberra has to offer. So, without further ado, let’s get into it.

What makes a great interior designer?

A great interior designer extracts a client’s vision, transforming it into a reality more beautiful than first imagined. Furthermore, they are masterful with space, form and function, and know what it takes to set the scene. For stunning and liveable spaces, consider these factors when choosing an interior designer:

  • Qualified, accredited, experienced. The best interior designers are tertiary qualified with years of practical experience. They are experts in spatial awareness and problem solving; form and function; and bringing concepts to life. Importantly, the cream of the crop will also be members of peak industry body, the Design Institute of Australia. Members are accredited, and must have a 5-years minimum experience base with a recognised design firm. Hence, a quick check on these essentials will help ensure a quality installation that stands the test of time.
  • Style philosophy. In many ways interior design is itself an artform, with creators aplenty and equally as many styles. Therefore, understanding your own interior design philosophy will help to find a designer can can deliver it. Is your interior designer a traditionalist; master of mid-century; modernists enthusiast; or all about country chic? A shared style philosophy and clear expectations will help ensure your vision is aptly translated and brought to life.
  • Form meets function. Looking beautiful is one thing, functioning perfectly is another! The best interior designs are masters at seamlessly blending form with function. They are spatial crusaders looking for innovative ways to utilise every square inch available. Importantly, they understand what it takes to create the mood and tone desired by every client. Subsequently, review their portfolio, visit their installations, and where possible speak to past clients.
  • Well connected. One of the advantages working with an interior designer is access to their suppliers. The best interior designers are incredibly well connected, with accounts at the leading supply houses. Knowing where to source items, and access to trade rates saves time money in the long run.
  • Impeccable project management. A finished design project is a feat in production, involving a plethora of trades and suppliers working around the clock. Great interior designers are superior project managers, work to clear timelines, and deliver in an agile fashion. Accordingly, be sure to request references from past clients for peace of mind that your project will be delivered on time, and on budget.

The best interior designers in Canberra

RiotACT’s editorial team has combed through 20 years of on-site comments to compile a list of the most recommended businesses according to you.

To be listed in our Best of Canberra series, each business needs to have consistently received positive feedback on RiotACT and Facebook as well as maintaining a minimum average of 4/5 stars on Google.

DNA Interiors

DNA Interiors

DNA Architects was established in 2001, and has worked on many projects, both standalone interiors along with interiors for the buildings they design. As an established multidisciplinary practice in Canberra, DNA is able to create integrated & cohesive interior & exterior spaces which are uniquely individual to their clients.

DNA covers a broad range of interiors, from residential to commercial & hospitality. Recently, they have designed the interiors for several of their own architectural projects, allowing them to approach the design with a well-developed understanding of the client’s requirements whilst also complementing and capturing the architectural intent.

The team at DNA Architects truly prides themselves on their high standards and quality they place on design and documentation. They are excited about interiors and passionate about working closely with their clients, dedicated to creating well-crafted individual design that evokes warmth and soul.

As Facebook user Luke Abbot writes in their review, These guys are designing some great spaces to live and work.”

10/14 Lonsdale Street
Braddon ACT 2612
Loft Studio Canberra

Loft Studio Canberra

Founded locally in 2018, Loft Studio Canberra has established a glowing reputation for delivering quality residential and commercial interior design and decorating services. Headed by Principal Interior Designer Kiara Shah, Loft Studio embraces a diverse range of clients and design styles to translate ordinary spaces into the extraordinary.

The team at Loft Studio believe that a house only becomes a home once it is personalised. They understand the challenges that come with designing beautiful spaces and believe that great design not only enhances lives; it also makes a difference to those that use and engage with it.

Loft Studio’s creative process involves a close examination of each projects context and needs which allows them to devise interior solutions accordingly. From discovering personal style to creating an entire lifestyle, Kiara and the team understand that a space must be aesthetically pleasing and functionally coherent with the needs of those living within it. For impeccably designed interiors with creative flair look to Loft Studio Canberra.

As Lynne Pezzullo shared on Google, Kiara had great ideas to complete our decorating and we are SO happy with her level of service and the outcomes we have achieved for artwork, rugs, chairs, consoles and side tables. Thanks so much Loft Studio!”

YOLK Design

YOLK is a Canberra-based interior design studio offering comprehensive design services for residential and commercial clients alike. Founded by local Canberran Nicola Smith, YOLK offers 20 years of collective interior design experience and an impressive track record of satisfied customers.

Known for their vibrant team, collaborative approach, high-quality design, and award-winning interiors, this team loves creating unique spaces which genuinely reflect their clients. If you are looking for functional and expressive interiors look to YOLK.

 RiotACT member FoothillsOfMtMajura had this to say about YOLK Design, Highly recommend Nicola Smith, Yolk Design.”

JMD Design

Canberra-based JMD Design offers innovative and beautiful interior design solutions. Founded by Julie Dalmaso, JMD offers a range of services from consultations through to execution for both residential and commercial clients.

With over two-decades design experience, Julie has an established network of trades and suppliers, and frequently collaborates with architects and builders. For clever and contemporary design solutions that make you excited to live in look to JMD Design.

Jo Arvonen shared this feedback on JMD Design on Google, Julie is such a talented interior designer. Her colours and ideas are fantastic and she’s a great person to deal with. I will absolutely without question use JMD Design again in the future.”

Journey Home Interior Design

Founded in 2012 by Nadine Neilson, Journey Home Interiors celebrates the classical, timeless, and sophisticated mood that traditional design offers. A consummate professional, Nadine has spent years refining her skills internationally and now delivers a truly world-class service in Canberra.

Passionate about transforming her frustrated clients into house-proud home owners, Nadine offers design strategy, decorating and furnishing, and renovating or building services. For sophisticated interiors and timeless spaces look to Journey Home Interiors.

Fusion Painting shared their experience on Google, Nadine from Journey Home provides our clients with a colour consultancy service. She has a fantastic ability to pick colours, materials and effects that work perfectly with the client’s space and individual tastes. We’ve had her weave her magic in our office space too and couldn’t be happier!”

If you’re looking for more information on design or construction services in Canberra, you might like our articles on the best architects, the best builders and renovators, or the best landscapers Canberra has to offer. And, if you need some design inspiration check out our article on the best furniture stores in the region.

Your experience with interior designers in Canberra

Thanks to our commenters who have provided insightful feedback. If you believe we have got it wrong, please let us know.

Have you had experience with any of the interior designers listed above? If so, share your feedback in the comments below.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does an interior designer do?
An interior designer works to understand behaviours and create functionally optimal spaces. They consider aspects like space, accessibility, efficiency, functionality, and acoustics as part of this process. Designers may also offer decorator services; or changing the aesthetics and impressions of interior spaces using furnishings and fixtures.
What is the difference between an interior designer and an interior decorator?
Although the terms may be used interchangeably, interior designers do differ from interior decorators. Interior designers focus on optimising the functional use of space; whereas interior decorators focus on the look and feel of it. Many interior designers can also offer decorative services.
Is using an interior designer worth it?
There are many advantages that come with hiring an interior designer. Their skills ensure clients maximise the usage - and appeal - of internal spaces. Their expertise can not only expedite the process; they can also provide long term cost savings due to quality selections and getting things right the first time. If you feel out of your depth with interiors, are looking to renovate, or have a large project on your hands, an interior design may be just what you need. Always weigh up the pros and cons to decide what is right for you.
How can I determine my interior design style?
Other ways to help determine your own design style include taking an inventory of your current décor, visiting fashion boutiques, art galleries or furniture stores, browsing magazines and websites, and even taking an online quiz. Being able to articulate your own interior style preferences will help when briefing an interior designer, and when making future purchases or changes to your décor. The design should also complement your lifestyle, so make note of what is important to you in your daily routine and ensure elements in your style uphold this!
What questions should I ask an interior designer?
Asking the right questions during your briefings will help you find the right interior designer for your project. Questions regarding their own interior style, services offered, charges and whether they can work with your budget, how they will present design concepts, who will be executing the designs, and recourse in the event that are unsatisfied may all help.

What's Your Opinion?


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10 Responses to The best interior designers in Canberra
Liz Rhynehart Liz Rhynehart 12:02 pm 16 Apr 21

Studio & You - excellent to deal with and amazing finish. Can’t fault them.

Re Morgan Re Morgan 9:49 am 16 Apr 21

Highly recommend Studio Black Interiors. Without a doubt the best in Canberra 🙂 ig: @studioblackinteriors

Barbara Cooper Barbara Cooper 1:03 am 14 Apr 21

Journey Home Interiors

Bob Bob 11:13 am 08 Jan 18

I’ve used Lauren from LO Design studio before and she was great to deal with and gave me exactly what I was looking for. Very impressed http://www.lodesignstudio.com

Antolin Antolin 5:30 pm 24 Jun 15
Kim F Kim F 9:04 pm 02 May 11

You could try Alex Kucharska, alexkuch@hotmail.com

Very creative and a lovely person to work with.

satyr satyr 1:07 pm 02 May 11

A relative of mine is a professional designer based in Sydney. She travels to Canberra fairly regularly. Her website is http://www.saltbox.com.au

I just wish I had the cash to get my house done 🙁

HerCanberra HerCanberra 7:51 am 01 May 11

Guys, noticed a typo on my last comment while submitting – can you please change ‘What’ to “That”! Sorry!

HerCanberra HerCanberra 7:49 am 01 May 11

What was to be my recommendation, too! She really knows her stuff, is great to deal with and doesn’t cost a fortune…

http://yolk.biz/

FoothillsOfMtMajura FoothillsOfMtMajura 8:21 pm 30 Apr 11

Highly recommend Nicola Smith, Yolk Design.

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