Is it just me, or is anyone else seeing the dramatic shift that has recently taken place in the design profession? When I was in school we focused on things like form, function, proportion and beauty. Once you had mastered the art of these fundamental design elements you were considered to be pretty much on your way. Now however, the role of the interior designer is expanding to encompass not only these basic elements, but much, much more.
Largely due to dramatic and unexpected changes in our economy, increased life expectancy, and a strong resolve on the part of our rapidly growing older population choosing to "age in place", we have added a lot of new terminology to the fray. Terms such as: communal living spaces, imposed lifestyle demands, and adaptive design. We as designers can no longer afford to limit our professional role to form, function and beautification. We also need to stay in touch with new leading edge concepts which shift more toward eco - friendly, energy efficient ideas and solutions designed to meet the diverse lifestyle needs of our clientele.
As a designer in Orlando and Central Florida, I am committed to working together with industry partners to design homes which will better address our growing need for communal living spaces. Homes designed so that generations can live together under one roof with shared center courtyards and common areas where family and friends can gather, as well as having individual living spaces where they can later retreat. Homes with dual Master bedroom suites for "baby boomers" caring for their aging parents or couples with adult children who for various reasons have decided to return home. Homes for young professionals who have chosen to pool their resources to share space and living expenses rather than compromise their standard of living.
Our role as professional designers should be revised to now include a commitment to work together promoting awareness and creating innovative design solutions for a changing world!