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  • Writer's pictureAgi

Do you need an interior designer for your kitchen renovation? Or should you just rely on the "free" design by the supplier?

Today, I wanted to open up this topic as it is quite an interesting one - I think. There are pro's and con's to hiring an interior designer as opposed to sticking with the kitchen designer from your supplier, but before we dive into this, let me tell you about the very first lesson I was thought at Uni when studying economics back in 2017. There is no such thing as free! Just there isn't.

Anyways, this isn't to say you shouldn't take advantage of the seemingly free stuff. I do it too! But there is always a catch, however subtle that might be.

Now, let's move onto kitchen design, though, shall we? 😁

Interior designer vs Kitchen supplier designer for your kitchen renovation

I will get straight to the point: they are both perfectly fine!

What am I on about then? Well, 9 out of 10 times it is very obvious if a kitchen is designed by interior designer or by the designer of the kitchen supplier.

Even though a lot of times the supplier's designer is an interior designer, the final look just cannot be as detailed an personal as the space that was designed by an interior designer.

As an interior designer with a passion for creating opulent spaces, I often encounter a common question from my clients: "Is it worth hiring an interior designer for my kitchen when suppliers offer 'free' designs?"

Let's delve into this query and explore the invaluable benefits an experienced interior designer brings to your project, but I will also be honest about why a supplier's kitchen designer might be a really suitable option for you.

The Illusion of "Free" Designs

Suppliers enticingly offer "free" designs, a tempting proposition that may seem like a cost-effective solution. However, it's crucial to recognize the hidden costs and limitations that come with these seemingly complimentary services.

1. One-Size-Fits-All Approach

Suppliers often provide generic designs, aiming to cater to a broad audience - basically, they need to offer what sells.

These designs may lack the personalization required to reflect your unique style and preferences. A larger supplier may have more options with regarding finishes that could be combined, this would be essential to make the kitchen more interesting.

A lot of these kitchens would have standard sizes, and lots of lots of cupboards on all walls. You can't blame the supplier, though, they sell kitchens, so they need to sell you as many cupboards as they can fit in.

white kitchen with large island and mosaic backsplash
Lovely kitchen - designed by supplier

2. Limited Material and Fixture Options

Free designs may limit your choices to the supplier's offerings, restricting the use of premium materials and fixtures, while an interior designer can source from a vast array of suppliers.

While it may seem that they have a pretty good range to choose from, they will always have limited choices, as they just cannot practically sell everything.

Typically, handles and worktops fall into these categories, and let me tell you, you will pay massive premium for buying these from the supplier. This is not even an industry secret. Limited choices for premium prices? Hmm... not really sure about the value of free design now....

Of course, you can always source these things by yourself. It will certainly be cheaper, but you will need to take time to source things from different places and co-ordinate it with all other things that's going on. (While an interior designer will do that for you, no matter where the accessories coming from.) This is absolutely a viable option if you are up for it!

3. Lack of Personalization

Your home is an extension of your personality, and a generic design may not capture the essence of who you are. An interior designer brings a personalized touch, ensuring that every element aligns with your lifestyle and taste.

However, I would go further! Your kitchen is a significant part of your home and not a stand alone room. This means, it needs to be designed with the rest of your home also in mind, considering all other rooms it is connected to. If this kitchen is part of an open plan living space, then the importance of a cohesive design throughout your home is just simply not something you can ignore.

Kitchen suppliers' designers just do not consider the rest of your home.

The Artistry of an Interior Designer

Let's now have a look at the other side, what you get when you hire an interior designer to design your kitchen. I would also like to not one thing here: there are kitchen designers who work independently, and are basically interior designers specialised in kitchens. This kind of kitchen designer you absolutely want to work with and they are a great option when you only work on renovating your kitchen.

1. Tailored Designs

An interior designer tailors every aspect of your kitchen design to your specific needs, considering your lifestyle, preferences, and the architectural nuances of your space. As mentioned before, they will design your kitchen with the rest of your home in mind, so you won't end up with a beautiful new kitchen that has a different personality to the rest of the home.

When you have an interior designer on board, you can go fully bespoke on your kitchen cabinetry, as well, and that opens up practically unlimited options in terms of look. Forget about boring plain slabs or shaker style!

dark kitchen with solid oak with large island and an organic shape unique pendant above it
Beautiful, unique kitchen - designed by an interior designer

2. Access to Exclusive Materials

Working with an interior designer opens the door to a world of premium materials and fixtures that may not be available through standard suppliers. The most high end suppliers are "trade only", so you would probably not know about them at all. This ensures a distinctive, high-end finish that elevates your space and makes it unique. Designers often pass on their trade discounts to clients, in which case you would even save money.

3. Project Management Expertise

There are several trades involved in a kitchen renovation and some aspects of the design is very technical. Coordinating the various elements of a kitchen renovation project can be overwhelming. An interior designer serves as your project manager, overseeing timelines, budgets, and installations to ensure a seamless and stress-free experience.

Elevating Your Lifestyle with a Personal Touch

If you are a design conscious client who wants the best, then every detail matters. A professional designer goes beyond the surface, transforming your kitchen or bathroom into a work of art that resonates with your affluence and individuality.

So, do you need an interior designer for your kitchen? The answer lies in your desire for a space that transcends the ordinary, where luxury meets functionality, and where every detail is a testament to your unique style.

Ready to embark on this exciting journey? Consult with a skilled interior designer and witness the transformation of your kitchen or bathroom into a masterpiece that reflects the epitome of luxury.

RE-cap and summary

If you skipped to end, or simply love a table of comparison, this is for you!

Pros of Hiring an Interior Designer for Your Kitchen or Bathroom

  1. Tailored Designs

  2. Access to Exclusive Materials

  3. Project Management Expertise

  4. Long-term Investment

  5. Distinctive Style

Cons of Opting for "Free" Designs from Suppliers

  1. Generic Designs

  2. Limited Material and Fixture Options

  3. Lack of Personalization

  4. Potential Hidden Costs

  5. Missed Design Opportunities


About Me


I am Agnes, a structural engineer, economist and qualified interior designer.

My friends just call me Agi. :)

If you are planning a renovation or remodel of your home or looking to buy a new one I am your go to person!


After spending over 15 years in the construction industry, first as an engineer and later as quantity surveyor / commercial manager on multi ten million GBP projects, I decided to set up my own business and help people, like you, to live in their dream home.


Your space should be designed around you and your lifestyle and not the other way around, so I strongly believe in designing your home from the "inside out".


Get in touch with me early in the process to start your project the right way.

My Signature Service includes full service interior design and renovation management.

I basically take on your project as it was my own home, from the first step to the last, saving you time, money and frustration.

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