The leap of design – a new year resolution

Kim Moore Moodboard submission Part 1

I WAS ONCE TOLD there are a million reasons not to do something and its true! It’s always nicer to procrastinate than actually taking the first step to success and setting a goal.

Amongst other resolutions of mine which have flitted by the wayside, this one will stick… I hope! Positive thinking and progression are my aims for 2011, and I believe these two old pals can help you along the way to finally taking the serious plunge into interior design.

Now im terrible at taking my own advice but like a lot of others, an expert at giving it. For example, something as simple as entering a design competition, putting in a few hours of effort, glue and colour could actually give you a nice little return. Homing in on your talents and skills, taking yourself more seriously and having more confidence is whats needed.

A few hours work = free gifts!

I came across Catriona Doherty, a 51-year-old former student from The National Academy in Nottingham, who won first prize in a Laura Ashley “Inspired Design” competition. She scooped a massive £3000 to spend in Laura Ashley! Not bad for a few hours graft. Catriona completed her NDA Diploma in Interior Design last year and is proof that positive thinking and belief can result in progression and rewards.  She wasnt alone, Interior Design Tutor  and Architectural Designer Kim Moore also bagged 2nd prize and £3000 in the professional category for her mood-board submission. It sounds very American when I read it back, but maybe a pinch of Yankee faith is a good thing.

Catriona Doherty was thrilled with her win, “I just want to say a big thank you to the NDA tutors and all involved in the course, it was really well structured and literally gave me the know how and confidence to enter the competition.”

Have a look at the competition winners submissions and drool over their winnings by clicking HERE!

Distance Learning is not just for the mature student anymore

If the idea of developing your interest or hobby in interiors is swirling around your brain but you’re not sure how to go about it, look at distance learning or home study as its often called. Now this kind of education is always attached to the idea of a middle class housewife needing something else to fill their time whilst their husband works away. This stereotype is rubbish! With the new changes in tuition fees and the price of higher education skyrocketing, many younger design enthusiasts are opting for distance learning approach. One major benefit is you have complete control over the time it takes to complete a course and total flexibility ,so what might be appealing to younger students is there’s no getting up for 9 o’clock lectures! It’s important to do proper research to make sure the courses you choose are accredited.

Kim Moore Moodboard submission part 2


Gain valuable work experience.

Home study is a fantastic way to enable you to offer your services, (mostly free) resulting in a great wealth of experience, references and contacts. It’s well established that its “who you know, not what you know”, so get your finger in every pie you can. Being straightforward and a little pushy could land you a great work ex opportunity, even a job! Dont underestimate this tool, often what you learn on the job you’ll put back into your work and progress quicker.


The  National Design Academy are fully accredited by Staffordshire University and specialise in distance learning interior design courses. They’re Nottingham’s best kept secret. They offer flexible courses from diploma to degree level and provide course material delivered online, with tutors ready at hand to help.

KLC School of Design are a London-based institution offering interior design courses at its studios in Chelsea Harbour. They are established, accredited and also offer distance learning opportunities.

Limperts Academy of Design also offer distance learning courses in interior design. Not only that they provide courses in Landscape & Garden design and Image & Fashion styling. Although their BA Hons in Interior Design is actually run through The National Design Academy.

Hotcourses are a great online search engine for all sorts of courses and a quick tool to research  interior design courses available.

READ….. have a look at interior magazines like GOOD HOMES, PERIOD IDEAS, GOOD HOUSEKEEPING and 25 BEAUTIFUL HOMES to keep up to date with the latest design tips, courses, trends and news. There are also some great blogs online and websites on the links page.


Filed under 25 Beautiful homes, A new year a new career, distance learning, Education, Good Homes, Good Housekeeping, home study, Hotcourses, Kim Moore, Laura Ashley, News, Periord Ideas, The National Design Academy

8 responses to “The leap of design – a new year resolution

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